Zirker, D. (2015). Conclusion. In D. Zirker (Ed.), Forging Military Identity in Culturally Pluralistic Societies: Quasi-Ethnicity (pp. 123–128). Lanham, Maryland, United States: Lexington Books (an imprint of The Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc.).
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/13473
Two critical points are highlighted in this examination of what we have chosen to call "quasi-ethnic identities" in military establishments: First, that although the emergence of this phenomenon has been, at best, gradual and incomplete, it has been increasingly aided by a global learning curve; and second, that its goal or strategy, the strengthening of military autonomy and bargaining power, includes the further isolation and alienation of the military from mainstream society, and hence from democratic practices. As to the first point, information exchange is now so rapid and so pervasive that even a relatively remote military establishment such as that of Guinea or Suriname can be fully aware within hours of developments in "military organizational engineering" across the globe. Of the cases in this volume, only Guinea, Tanzania and Algeria have fully established independently "invented" military cultures, the "quasi-ethnicities" that are the subject of this book. Of those, only Guinea has thus far been able to use its development to establish a largely separate, autonomous and independent military organization for purposes of bargaining, and maintaining a unified military position, and been able to maintain a relatively healthy budget and avoid the civil wars, albeit through a protracted military dictatorship, that have beset all of its West African neighbors.
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