Bacevich_Outline - The New American Militarism Wilsonians...

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The New American Militarism Wilsonians Under Arms Ideals such as spreading democracy and freedom have existed since the time of Wilson Difference between then and now: the practice of using force to spread these values Then - America historically had a small standing army - Fear of militarism was a politically relevant issue Now - Large defense establishment - No political candidate could stand against the use of force - Technology has increased expectations about effectiveness of military power to achieve ends- “normalization of war” - Status of soldiers and military establishments has increased- on both left and right Problem: as policy has become militarized, military has become increasingly separated from American society The Military Profession at Bay In the aftermath of Vietnam, the military sought to break away from the political establishment they believed had led them into that mess Architect of the new army: Gen. Creighton Abrams - sought to restore the bond between the military and the American people- instituted a system that mandated the presence of a reserve component in every American division- political consequences to calling up the reserves and therefore of going to war - sought to shift the balance of civil-military authority back toward the military- thought McNamera and the Whiz Kids had micromanaged the war without considering the expertise of soldiers Postwar Amnesia - Army decided not to learn the lessons of Vietnam, but to restyle the type of conflicts it would fight- emphasis on the large ground encounters it could win- prepared itself to fight a massive ground war against the Soviets Weinberger Doctrine- series of preconditions that would have to be met before the
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This note was uploaded on 02/20/2009 for the course HIST 3140 taught by Professor Logevall, f during the Spring '08 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

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Bacevich_Outline - The New American Militarism Wilsonians...

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