Focusing on the Military Committee of the North Atlantic Alliance and its role in shaping NATO, this book examines the development in Western societies of structures for Allied civil-military relationships and their influence on Western alliance since 1914. As Bland states in his introduction, The need for a Military Committee composed of national Chiefs of Defense was recognized during the early discussions of NATO organizations. However, the concept approved in September 1949 by Foreign Ministers has not been subject to much analysis since that date. As the Military Committee is composed of the chiefs of defense of most NATO nations, it represents a powerful influence on the NATO policy process. Filling the void of information on the Military Committee, this book undertakes the difficult task of measuring the Committee's influence in the policy processes of NATO. Concluding with recommendations for the reorganization and Europeanization of NATO's military structure, including the disbandment of Allied Command Europe and the office of SACEUR in favor of a regional European structure, this book challenges the appropriateness of the present military structure of NATO. This conclusion is linked to the idea that America should reduce its commitments to Europe and that they should be taken over by Europeans. Bland addresses and challenges current suggestions about how such a devolution of responsibilities should take place. Students and scholars of military studies, military officers, and officials who study and work in the North Atlantic Alliance, will find this book a source of new insight and valuable information.
Covering all Pacific islands involved in World War II military operations, this book is a detailed, single source of information on virtually every geo-military aspect of the Pacific Theater. Arranged regionally and, to the extent possible, chronologically according to when islands entered the war, entries provide complete background information. Along with island names, nicknames, Allied code names, location, and wartime time zones, the entries include such topics as the island's physical characteristics, weather, health hazards, historical background, native population, natural resources, and military value. Japanese and Allied strategies and operations, military problems caused by terrain, military installations, Japanese units and key commanders, Allied units and key commanders, and brief battle descriptions are also covered along with the island's postwar status. A valuable resource for researchers, historians, military history enthusiasts, and war gamers, the book provides complete background information on the geo-military aspects of the Pacific Ocean region, its islands, and the roles they played in the war. 108 maps provide specific information. Until now, geo-military information could only be found by searching four to ten publications on each island.
This book follows Italy's military history from the late Renaissance through the present day, arguing that its leaders have consistently looked back to the power of Imperial Rome as they sought to bolster Italy's status and influence in the world. As early as the late 15th century, Italian city-states played important roles in European conflicts. After unification in 1861, the military would become the nation's unifying force, the melting pot of the state. Italy's industrial and then colonial expansion brought it into the wars of the 20th century. The rise of fascist movement was the disastrous consequence of Italy's desire for colonial and military power, a history that the nation still confronts as it seeks to play a role in world politics.
Wealthy, urban Italy has always had great political, cultural, and strategic importance for Europe. The leaders of its independent city-states intervened militarily in struggles among the European powers to its north and west but also against the expanding Muslim empires to its south and east. Italian culture supported military innovation, developing (for instance) new fortifications and naval organizations. After centuries of division, which limited Italy's power against the larger, unified European nations, the military played an important role in the nationalist unification of the entire country. Rapid industrialization followed, and along with it Italy's forays into overseas colonialism. Italy became a major power, but its turn to militant fascism during its expansionist era continues to haunt its state and military.
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