From the Editor

From Parameters,  Winter 2002-03, pp. 2-3.

In This Issue . . .

David Jablonsky provides an insightful review of the American national security state, from its origins in the National Security Act of 1947 to the aftermath of 11 September 2001. Should a form of government resultant of the Cold War continue in its present structure a decade after the fall of the Berlin Wall and in light of the threats to global security following 9/11? Jablonsky examines the need for change against a backdrop of American history, analyzing national interests, national security policy, and grand strategy to determine if our present form of government is sufficient to protect America’s core interests. The author concludes that the institutional form of US government is indeed changing as America reevaluates its grand strategic functions.

Martin Cook examines the advisory role of the military in the application of force as major powers increasingly demonstrate a propensity to use military forces in the defense of humanitarian causes. Will this willingness to use force in the name of human rights create a new world order, replacing the Westphalian tradition? What is the proper role for the military in this new political and moral relationship? The author opines that the military’s cultural expectation as to the use of overwhelming force to ensure the safety of its forces may require reconsideration when viewed with regard to issues such as proportionality and noncombatant immunity. If military experts are to exercise their professional expertise (management of violence) in this new environment, they must be more attuned to the ethical, political, and diplomatic constraints affecting their decisions.

Robert Wilkie presents the first of three articles in our feature examining “The Uncertain Future of Europe and NATO.” His review of NATO’s future explores the question that has preoccupied America’s European allies for over 50 years: whether to be a good Atlanticist or a good European. With NATO and the European Union both expanding their spheres of influence, old jealousies based on fears of American hegemony and European indolence continue. Wilkie’s trip through NATO history since the fall of the Soviet Union provides the reader with an understanding of the strategic framework required to ensure the successful continuation of the alliance and its competitor, the European Union. The author supports a relationship comprised of a NATO based on American primacy providing a strategic framework for operations outside the European theater, with the European Union focusing on a military force capable of dealing with contingencies on the continent.

Rebecca Johnson and Micah Zenko continue our look at the future of Europe and NATO with their analysis of the alliance’s role in the global war on terrorism. The authors contend the Bush Administration has purposely resisted NATO’s attempts to play a more active role in the war against terror. They adroitly examine the rationale behind the Administration’s opposition to a muscular NATO presence and the advantages of coordinating such a war through NATO channels. Their examination concludes with a proposed structure for a NATO-led effort.

Our final article in this feature deals directly with the proposition of continued NATO expansion. Ryan Hendrickson’s article argues that Slovenia should be


invited to join the alliance at the November 2002 summit in Prague. Although recent announcements have proposed an expansion that could include anywhere from seven to ten new members, Hendrickson makes the case that Slovenia is most deserving. In addition to Slovenia’s fully functional democracy and unwavering support for NATO’s broader strategic mission, perhaps the most important factor in Slovenia’s favor is its geographic location. Slovenia would serve as a bridge between the two “islands” of Italy and Hungary.

Kimberly Field and Robert Perito make the case for an intervention force to support stability operations. Such a force would provide the capability required to establish public order and assist local governments in providing for their own security and rule of law. The force would be composed of four elements: robust military forces; police-constabulary units; civil police officers; and lawyers, judges, and penal system experts. The authors analyze military and international civilian police missions in Haiti, Bosnia, Eastern Slavonia, Kosovo, and East Timor to call for the creation of a federal US Civilian Police Corps capable of partnering with military forces in stability operations. The authors are quick to point out that this organization would require congressional approval and appropriate legislation.

John Gentry provides a status report on the yet unproven technology that the Department of Defense is counting on to generate significant operational advantages for US forces in the 21st century. His article serves as a wake-up call to all who believe a revolution in military affairs (RMA) is going to provide any marked increase over current capabilities. Operational inadequacies, technical limitations, and fundamental institutional problems, the author contends, doom any prospects for radical improvement. He bases this prediction on the “four fundamental problems” of the Joint Staff’s Joint Vision 2020. Gentry concludes with a series of recommendations for a new vision based on a revitalized military culture.

Eugene Smith continues our examination of the privatization of conflict. Smith presents a cogent argument for the employment of private military corporations (PMCs) in conflicts characterized as Military Operations Other Than War (MOOTW). As this new form of conflict spreads throughout the world and the demand for military forces becomes ever greater, PMCs offer specialized expertise at lower costs. The author provides a history of the privatization of conflict and concludes that PMCs will, by necessity, make up an ever increasing portion of required forces.

Our final article in this issue is Carl Haselden’s analysis of the impact that Korean reunification might have on future US military presence in Northeast Asia. He reviews each of the factors on which the number of US military in the region is based in an effort to determine how best to adjust our military presence. Haselden predicts that following reunification the number of US forces in Northeast Asia would certainly be smaller, but we should not be anxious to abandon our presence in Korea and Japan. The author concludes with a warning that remaining forces be thoroughly schooled in the skills associated with a more complex multinational and interagency environment.

Book Reviews provide a particularly rich and diverse array, including Richard Halloran’s sterling review of Henry Nau’s At Home Abroad: Identity and Power in American Foreign Policy. Tony Joes’ revealing look at Ralph Peters’ Beyond Terror: Strategy in a Changing World and Allan Millett’s candid consideration of Making War, Thinking History by Jeffrey Record also headline this feature. – RHT

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Reviewed 1 November 2002. Please send comments or corrections to