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Endurance and WarThe National Sources of Military Cohesion$
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Jasen J. Castillo

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780804789103

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804789103.001.0001

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The United States, 1968–72

The United States, 1968–72

(p.188) 7 The United States, 1968–72
Endurance and War

Jasen J. Castillo

Stanford University Press

Chapter seven argues, according to cohesion theory, that the United States deployed a professional military to fight the Vietnam War. This professional military grew out of a combination of weak regime control over American society and strong organizational autonomy for the armed forces to train. As such, U.S. armed forces displayed strong battlefield determination and flexibility but their staying power slowly deteriorated when the war became a stalemate and American political leaders began a drawdown of personnel to end the country's commitment to the war. Furthermore, cohesion theory explains why the U.S. military did better than primary group theory would expect.

Keywords:   cohesion theory, military cohesion, United States, Vietnam War, Tet Offensive, Viet Cong, professional military, regime control

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