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date: 25 February 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter summarizes the theoretical basis for the study of civil–military relations and then discusses the military as a political actor in the United States, other consolidated democracies, post-communist and other formerly single-party states, and developing states. The maintenance of healthy civil–military relations depends strongly on the government’s overall legitimacy, which can be threatened by changing technology, societal fragmentation, or government weakness and incompetence. The domestic civil–military relationship can affect international security dynamics through its effects on domestic regime stability and ability to reduce ungoverned spaces, foreign policy decision-making, and relative military capability.

Keywords: military, civilian, authority, democracy, governance, professionalism, expertise, dissent, control

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