Military Options | Model Diplomacy

There are a great range of military options available to policymakers in the United States You have large conventional forces that go up against armies on the other side

You can use missile strikes, airstrikes, a combination of the two You can use ships to signal presence A great example is our aircraft carriers signaling to the rest of the world that the United States will keep the seas open for business And then you have things like space, and missiles, and special operations raids And on the very high destructive end, we do have nuclear weapons

Some on the things that we use military force to do include ousting a regime that is hostile to either the American government or maybe to its own people We also use military force to attack terrorist organizations We use military force to deter people from doing bad things– and that's really important because often the threat of force is much more effective than actually using force We also have a presence around the world with military force, and that serves to assure our allies and to dissuade our possible adversaries One of the most important ways to use military force is in a role of building the peace, or keeping the peace

And we call those peace building or peacekeeping operations And one of the things that we are very good at and that we spent a lot of time doing is helping military forces of other countries get better so that they can solve their own problems The Prussian military officer named Clausewitz connected political ends with military means You don't want to use military force to go kill people or to break things That could be a means to an end, but the end is always the political goal

In the end the civilians make the decisions over the United States military If you consider the last 75 years we have seen the range of military options, everything from World War II, where every part of our economy, every part of our society was mobilized, all the way to the special operations that have been occurring in our time against terrorist groups Recently the United States has used military tools in ways that don't involve killing and capturing people or destroying things The disease Ebola broke out in West Africa, and the United States military was sent by the president to do some very important things including building isolation shelters, and also advising the medical operations As we go away from the Cold War and into the information age, it's interesting to think about how our military force has had to adapt

And there's a great debate both within and outside of the military about what cyberspace really means for military options in the future We of course want to defend ourselves and our interest in cyberspace, but we also have the option of using this connectedness to go out against our adversaries, and possibly use offensive operations as well Interestingly, there's almost no problem where military force alone offers a solution And every potential option has advantages, and most of them have disadvantages too A great example of that is the problem that President Obama has dealt with going after ISIS

He has had to figure out what the best possible options are, out of a bunch of bad options And sometimes in our messy world that's exactly what's required of our policymakers

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