But are military officers, specifically flag officers (generals and admirals), also political partisans? Increasingly -- and sadly -- they are. More important, the brass is profoundly "political," which is to say that its recommendations and decisions are hardly ever made for purely tactical or operational reasons.If only we could get Civil War historians and readers to accept these ideas. Sorry to report one glaring error, however:
... the current political system practically demands that the top military leaders declare (through actions or statements) their political leanings.
It is no coincidence that the chairman selected during the Clinton administration, as well as many of the top commanders, are openly Democrats today.
To become a flag officer requires political (nonpartisan) skill. To become a member of the inner circle requires political (partisan) affinity with the commander in chief.
Military historians are still arguing about civil-military relations in the Civil War.No, not at all. Actually, Lincoln's infallibility was settled during the Centennial and opposition to his views are today viewed as impudence.