Relaciones cívico-militares II.


Por Carlos Pissolito.

Ladies and gentlemen; soldiers and civilians...
The goals of my second lecture are:
Emphasis on the government/state aspect of the triangle/circle.
How governance affects security and Rule of Law (RoL)
How governance will shape CMI.

Please pay attention to the introduction. We are facing a complex phenomenon with non-linear implications. However, in order to help my lecture I will simplifies certain concepts, but please be aware, as we have just said, that reality is more important than ideas.

I know that I showed this slide few moments ago, but please keep in mind that most of the wars, conflicts and crisis are waged "within the people" and remember the causes: most of the occasions war and conflicts took place in urban areas and, second and most important, people are the aim of military operations.

Para ver la exposición en Power Point haga click en el link:

Since Ancient times, controlling military was a difficult task. The noble dogs: "gentle to their own and cruel to enemies." (Plato)
In Modern time there are two possible and rational systems:
Objective control: is a form of civilian control based on effort to increase the professionalism of the officer corps, carving off for it an sphere of action independent of politics. This is consider the "classical approach" and it has been explained -mainly- by Samuel P. Huntington.
Subjective control (also call fusionists): aims to tame the military by civilianization it. This is consider de "liberal" approach and has been developed by various sociologists, like: Guttmann, Jasnowitz , Moskos.
Which is the best? let me to tell you a brief story. The objective control was endured by the United States, a nation that never suffered a coup d'état.
On the contrary, my country, Argentina, always oscillated from militarism to fusionist theories, suffering many "revolutions" when the militarist were up or unconditional political subordination of the top rank officers when fusionist took power.

A sovereign state is a nonphysical juridical entity that is represented by one centralized government that has sovereignty over a geographic area. International law defines sovereign states as having a permanent population, defined territory, one government, and the capacity to enter into relations with other sovereign states.
Traditionally, state has had two main tasks:
“monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force”  (Weber).
protection and promotion of the economic and social well-being of its citizens. (Various).
However, “…the international system in moving away from an assembly of distinct, territorial, sovereign, legally, equal states toward a more complicated structures.” (van Creveld).
A short story can tell us how valid is van Creveld asseveration. In 1990, the US governed conducted by George Bush Senior invaded Iraq in order to liberate Kuwait. Later, his son, Jorge Bush Junior invaded again Iraq in order to produce a regime change.  Recently, the actual US President, Barak Obama ordered military operations in Iraq against what is called "The Islamic State", which isn´t a state in traditional terms. In few words: just in 25 years, the US government moved to fight a state in two different opportunities (Iraq), to fight a non-state entity in almost the same territory and over the same population.

Please, paid attention at the following definition of Governance. It refers to "all processes of governing, whether undertaken by a government, market or network, whether over a family, tribe, formal or informal organization or territory and whether through laws, norms, power or language."
According to that definition, governance, needs primarily and basically, one element: power. Power is defined as the ability to influence or control the behavior of people.
But, as History and experience teach us, power may be mandatory, but it isn´t enough in order to enjoy legitimacy and obtain consensus and moral authority.
There are two types and situations when a government can obtain legitimacy. Firstly, when it is elected. It should done legally, which in most of the cases, it implied by popular vote. And, secondly, when its governance is exercised pursuing the “common good”. Which it is a good shared and beneficial for all or most members of a given community.
Normally, Anglo-Saxons authors put emphasis on the legality of the process  (the observance of the rules the RoL) and Latin thinkers do in legitimacy of exercise (Common good).
However, both agree that RoL and the moral legitimacy will enhanced authority and consensus. Facilitating any governance activity. On the contrary, the lack of some of the two elements will restrains your consensus and, at the end, your power.

For far society is the more complex of the three elements and the most peculiar. Every society has a particular structure based on groups, institutions, organization and nets.
Groups: There an homogenous gathering of individuals with a common interest. They could be ethnic, religious, political groups, amongst others.
Institutions: Institutions are groups which the pursuit a common good.
Organizations: Organizations can be formal or informal. They pursuit specific good.
Nets: are connections established by several means of communications.  Recently, several social nets, like Facebook and Twitter have acquired a vital importance.

Surrounding, penetrating and interacting with the groups, the institutions, the organizations and the nets there is culture. Designed as: "the way of life, especially the general customs and beliefs, of a particular group of people at a particular time." (Oxford Dictionary).

Behaviors: is the range of actions and manners made by individuals, organisms, systems, or artificial entities in conjunction with themselves or their environment.
Attitude: An attitude is a posture, ranging from extremely negative to extremely positive. Or even, ambivalent.
If we consider humans being from a philosophical point of view, we can agree that all of us are related to tree main human conditions: truth, goodness and beauty.
Believes: is our relationship with we consider the truth.
Values: values are related to goodness and reflect a person's sense of right and wrong or what "ought" to be.
Cultural patterns: Express our sense of beauty an each culture has its own myths, representation, symbols, etc.
Communicating and connecting everything there is a Language; understood as complex systems of communication used by human It could be verbal, written and corporal. Also is important the notion of metalinguistc, which the language in its relationship with cultural context.

As we have said we will enjoy few resources for our complex CMR activities. - These resources are made, in general terms,  by men, ideas and materiel. Their importance is, also, is this order.
Specifically, they are:
Doctrine: there isn´t a specific doctrine on CMI. However, there are several documents of CIMIC elaborated by NATO. Also, recently, have appeared some civil homepage with relevant information.
Organization: Normally, military organization should be customized in order to adapt to specific mission requirements.
Training: Since CMI is a process in which almost all military functions participate, there is a need to reflect this in a wide spectrum of courses syllabuses. Also, practical exercises are very useful, especially when all actors (military and civilian) participate in order to increase interoperability
Logistic: There is specific need for communications arrangements, specially with civil actors.
Leadership: All CMI process relies heavily on the will, understanding and consistency of the CO.

There isn´t an established formula neither a recipe. Therefore, the temptations for improvisation is there.
However, there are principles and procedures that should be observed. Only a prudential judgment could bridge the gap from theoretical principles with real field circumstances.
Prudence is a virtue, or in order words an operational habits that can be acquired by training and education.
Consequently, educated men and women are the best toll for CMR.