Zirker, D. (2015). Introduction. In D. Zirker (Ed.), Forging Military Identity in Culturally Pluralistic Societies: Quasi-Ethnicity (pp. 1–15). Lanham, Maryland, United States: Lexington Books.
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The "Third Wave of Democracy" has had a decidedly mixed impact on the world's military establishments. An increasing appearance of "tribal behavior" and social isolation of military institutions in a post-conscription era, wars of attrition fought conservatively by volunteer forces against ethnic armies, religious tradition versus various versions of modernity, these patterns are rapidly becoming the hallmarks of our age. The end of the Cold War, and of ideology as a driving force of conflict has had profound impacts upon our understanding of socio-political development in virtually all parts of the world. In an important sense, identities-ethnic, religious, linguistic and even historic-have replaced the dichotomous ideological divide that characterized the Cold War. Social science axioms of that now almost-forgotten period have collapsed, along with the major "East Bloc" political systems, while pre-WWI obsessions with conceptualizations of culture, identity, religion and ethnicity have increasingly come to dominate political behavior.
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