January 13, 2021

Now Is a Bad Time to Weaken Civilian Control Over the Military

By ​Jim Golby

From the election of Abraham Lincoln that preceded the U.S. Civil War until last Wednesday, Americans were able to take the peaceful transition of power between presidents for granted. The value of a nonpartisan military under democratic civilian control seemed abstract and theoretical, something for other nations to worry about. The mob attacks on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 are a sudden reminder of just how vital a nonpartisan military really is—even in the United States.

The mob attacks on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 are a sudden reminder of just how vital a nonpartisan military really is—even in the United States.

President Donald Trump has largely ignored the laws and traditions governing U.S. civil-military relations. But problems in the relationship between the military, politicians, and the public began well before Trump’s tenure and will remain after he is gone. If the United States does not reverse these trends soon, it will likely find itself in an even more dangerous situation in the coming decades.

Read the full article from Foreign Policy.

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia