Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Strengthening Civil Military Relations

Civil control of the military is managed and maintained through the sharing of responsibility for control between civilian leaders and military officers. Specifically, civil authorities are responsible and accountable for some aspects of control and military leaders are responsible and accountable for others. Although some responsibilities for control may merge, they are not fused. The relationship and arrangement of responsibilities are conditioned by a nationally evolved regime of principles, norms, rules, and expectations concerning civil-military relations. Although a Government may be stable for long periods, it can change as basic causal factors such as values, issues, interests, personalities, and threats change. Alterations of rules and decision-making procedures account for the dynamic nature of civil-military relations, while alterations of norms and principles account for conflict in civil-military relations. Differences between states in the sub continent account for the particular national character of civil-military relations, much as like-minded Governments account for cross-cultural similarities in civil-military relations.

The first is that the military must reach out to the civilian world. Given the essentially universal agreement that civilians must control the military, the duty falls upon the military to find ways to talk to civilians, not the other way around. The second is that civilians must articulate a clear vision of what they expect in terms of the military mission. And the final suggestion is that the most practical and effective means of bringing about dialogue and understanding is to be bilateral education, in which both military and civilian elites would jointly attend specialized schools. Such schooling would emphasize military-strategic thinking, Indian history and political philosophy, military ethics, and the proper relationship between civil and military authority.

The increase in diversity among military personnel (all regions, multi lingual, all religions) has essentially strengthened ties between society and the military, especially those ties weakened by caste, language and religion in civil society. The results of wars China War of 1962, Indo Pak wars and JK & NE terrorism which had weakened our Civil Military Relationships now has further deteriorated with the advent of Naxal and Mao terror. This is obvious from news reports and analysis which led to massacre of CRPF Jawans.

Presently the advisers on military affairs to GoI are the IPS and IAS and randomly a few selected Military Strategists. The Military needs to do more to a healthy, sustainable and endurable CMR. The Military should be more Vocal especially now that we have an upgraded "Officer Cadre" after implementation of AVSC recommendations.

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