Debates over civil-military relations have reached a fever pitch since the 2016 presidential campaign and the beginning of the Trump administration. Many have focused on the top-down questions: What role should retired generals play in our political system? What are the consequences of having so many former military leaders at the upper-most ranks of a presidential administration? Should we be worried about the state of civilian leadership in the Pentagon? But to put those in their right context, it is important to look at civil-military relations from the bottom-up. How are ethics taught to our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines? What is the state of the profession of arms? What does it really mean for the American people to honor their troops? In this episode, we tackle many of these questions from the top-down and the bottom-up with a terrific panel of experts: Loren DeJonge Schulman of the Center for a New American Security, Alice Hunt Friend of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and Steven Foster of the U.S. Army and one of the contributors to Redefining the Modern Military: The Intersection of Profession and Ethics.
Listen to the full conversation on War on the Rocks.
More from CNAS
CommentaryThe Army may have hit this year's recruiting goal, but the service still has a long way to go
A year after missing its recruitment goals for the first time in more than a decade, the U.S. Army announced on Sept. 17 that it will meet its target of 68,000 new soldiers fo...
By Emma Moore
CommentaryHow to Make the U.S. Military Weak Again
No-first-use, or the idea that the United States should not use nuclear weapons unless first attacked with them, has gained traction everywhere from the House Armed Services C...
By Brent Peabody
CommentaryThe U.S. Military is Not, and Can Never Be, Afghanistan’s Police
In 1829, the father of modern policing, Sir Robert Peel, established “Peel’s Principles” to describe the role of police at large. Almost 200 years later, policing has changed ...
By COL Sarah Albrycht
CommentaryEvery Marine a Blue-Haired Quasi-Rifleperson?
All the U.S. military services suffer a shortage of competent and experienced cyber talent. But with a tiny pool of eligible candidates willing to do work for the Department o...
By Emma Moore & Nina Kollars