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Orient is a delicate matter: Military in political processes in Asian countries

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A review of the collective monograph "Armed forces in the Modern East" edited by D.V. Streltsov discusses the role of the armed forces in the socio-political development of the eastern states. The authors of the monograph focus on the legal status of the armed forces, its role in providing security, its participation in political and economic processes, as well on the relationship between the army and society, and important issues of the armed forces reforms. According to the authors of the book, the study of the role of the armed forces in the eastern states policy did not lose its relevance for many years. This role has deep roots in the history of the formation of statehood, the peculiarities of political processes in the Afro-Asian world, modernization processes, which were objectively related to the active role of the armed forces. The authors pay special attention to civil-military relations, which vary widely depending on the specific conditions in the eastern states studied: Egypt, Israel, Turkey, Pakistan, India, Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia, China, North Korea, and Japan. The authors show that the periods of increasing the role of the military in political and economic processes had not only negative, but also positive aspects. The armed forces often acted as guarantors of the statehood during crises and served as a support in carrying out social and economic reforms. The authors conclude that due to the high potential of conflict in the East, the influence of the military will remain high in most states, although not necessarily in direct form. At the same time, in many cases, certain mechanisms of checks and balances have been created, preventing immoderate influence of the military. Thus, societies to a certain extent adapted to the historically high role of the military.




Konyshev, V. N., & Sergunin, A. A. (2019). Orient is a delicate matter: Military in political processes in Asian countries. Polis (Russian Federation), (1).

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