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The Army You Have
How Junior Officers Built Up, and Tore Down, the Weinberger Doctrine
The Army You Have

Adam Joyce - Author
Price: $90.00 
Hardcover - 288 pages
Release Date: April 2019
ISBN13: 978-1-4384-7357-4



Analyzes how soldiers at the middle level of the Army, and the networks they forge, can transform the way America wages war.

In 1984, Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger proclaimed a new American way of war, one that would guide security policy for more than a generation. If elected officials send the nation’s men and women into combat, he announced, they must adhere to strict criteria: the strategy must be clear, the public must support the war from start to finish, and the military must be allowed to win with overwhelming force. More than twenty years after this seminal moment, the United States overturned the Weinberger doctrine as it sought to recover from the disastrous early years of the Iraq War. Instead of fighting with overwhelming force to defeat enemies, its Army would aim to secure foreign populations and rebuild societies. Just as important, civilian officials were no longer admonished to formulate clear strategies and guarantee the public’s will for war. In The Army You Have, Adam Joyce examines how the Weinberger doctrine came about and why it was overthrown. He demonstrates that over many years—long before the official changes—junior officers developed ideas at odds with their leadership and then forged alliances with officials and experts outside the Army to transform the prevailing way of war. Joyce takes us inside the thinking of these junior officers by exploring their oral histories, declassified correspondence, monographs, and published articles. By evaluating this rich evidence and synthesizing literatures of international relations, American political development, and historical institutionalism, he provides a framework for analyzing how hierarchical and seemingly intractable institutions can change in gradual, unpredictable—and, ultimately, enduring—ways.

“This important work contributes to both the study of military innovation and institutional change, broadly defined.” — Benjamin M. Jensen, author of Forging the Sword: Doctrinal Change in the U.S. Army

Adam Joyce is a scholar of American politics and foreign policy in New York.

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