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Creating Military PowerThe Sources of Military Effectiveness$
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Risa A. Brooks and Elizabeth A. Stanley

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780804753999

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804753999.001.0001

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Social Structure, Ethnicity, and Military Effectiveness: Iraq, 1980–2004

Social Structure, Ethnicity, and Military Effectiveness: Iraq, 1980–2004

(p.55) Chapter 3 Social Structure, Ethnicity, and Military Effectiveness: Iraq, 1980–2004
Creating Military Power

Timothy D. Hoyt

Stanford University Press

This chapter investigates the effect of government policies intended to control internal division on overall military effectiveness. It specifically addresses the case of Iraq from 1980 to 2004. This case indicates that there is a distinct trade-off between improving military effectiveness and preserving internal security. Iraq was involved in three major wars from 1980 to 2004: the Iran-Iraq War (1980–88), the 1991 Persian Gulf War, and the 2003 U.S. war. The Iraq case supports the hypothesis that discrimination in training and education does adversely influence military skill and quality. Discrimination also harmed the capacity of the military to respond quickly to developments on the battlefield. In general, the Iraq case shows that discrimination on ethnic grounds can significantly affect the ability to mobilize resources in war, and policies that are less discriminatory appear to mobilize resources more efficiently and to create higher levels of military effectiveness.

Keywords:   government policies, military effectiveness, Iraq, internal security, Iran-Iraq War, 1991 Persian Gulf War, 2003 U.S. war, discrimination

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