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Thoughts on War$
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Phillip S. Meilinger

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780813178899

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813178899.001.0001

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American Military Culture and Its Influence on Strategy

American Military Culture and Its Influence on Strategy

(p.127) 9 American Military Culture and Its Influence on Strategy
Thoughts on War

Phillip S. Meilinger

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter reviews US military culture and how each service has a different tradition and ethos. These differences affect how soldiers, sailors, and airmen view war, and how they plan to fight. It is amazing how often the services disagree on fundamental concepts of military organization, doctrine, and the use of force. These deeply held differences of opinion were shaped by unique service cultures that have had a profound effect on American military strategy. The advent of “jointness” was an attempt to correct the short-sighted parochialism of previous generations and introduce a more holistic view of war.

Keywords:   American military culture, service ethos, joint operations, Alexis de Tocqueville, militarism, Samuel Huntington, military strategy, annihilation, gradual response/escalation, National Guard, Vietnam War

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