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Preface and Acknowledgements

This book was finalised during my DAAD Postdoctoral Fellowship at Paul

H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), Johns Hopkins University, during a ‘working from home’ regime amid the COVID-19 pandemic, in my apartment in Washington, DC, only a few blocks away from the White House. The final thoughts occurred in the context of heightened civil-military relations in the United States, as the Pentagon distanced itself from the Trump administration’s decision to deploy troops to the nation’s capital to end protests that turned violent in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd. Within days, the protests escalated, with extensive looting and property destruction in downtown DC. In this context, approximately

I, 600 active-duty troops were deployed to the DC area. It was unsettling during my usual walks at the National Mall to observe dozens of troops armed with semi-automatic weapons patrolling World War II Memorial and proximities. The dystopian image of the DC national guards standing on the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial was so suggestive of the developments - this picture received global attention and outrage. Active-duty troops and armoured vehicles patrolled on Pennsylvania Avenue, National Mall Park and surroundings for days. The most prominent thought in my mind at that time was: “So much military on the streets I have seen only in Pakistan!”. Also, during the curfew that was issued for three consecutive days for Washington, DC, I had to recall the curfews I experienced during the field research in conflict zones. But wait, the things here were yet different! Only days after Trump’s bizarre photo op at St. John’s Episcopal Church near Lafayette Square, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley apologised, and the Secretary of Defense Mark Esper declared that he had not been informed about the photo op - both later testified on the military’s role in civilian law enforcement before the US House Committee on Armed Services. It followed several days of op-eds and video messages by active and retired military generals, including by General Milley, and letters issued by the Department of the Navy of the United States Naval Forces Europe-Africa, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the National Guard Bureau, inter alia. Those letters, op-eds and such a proactive military surprised many. In a revealing example of what we can call a ‘paradox’ of military professionalism, the military’s message was all the same: Americans have the freedom of peaceful assembly; the military is committed to civilian oversight as per Constitution, but better do keep us out from these protests, as military operations are not appropriate response tools, and instead the root causes of the riots need to be addressed - “The catalyst for the current situation may have been the death of Mr. George Floyd, but we should all understand that the outrage sparked by his death goes much deeper across many communities in our great Nation. (...) Bias, prejudice and intolerance have no place on our team” (Department of the Navy, 3 June 2020). It became quickly clear that, while there were many parallels, civil-military relations in a democracy were so much different than in hybrid orders. And this was reinforcing exactly the argument made in this book, which puts the base for a new theory of civil-military relations, and which I am delighted to present to you.

The author is tremendously thankful to all civilian and military representatives who agreed to be interviewed for this research, and whose participation in this research was under strict anonymity and under the auspices of the ethical approval obtained prior to the field research. Without their inputs, this work would not have been possible. The author would like to acknowledge the funding by the Irish Research Council, ZEIT-Stiftung Hamburg and YERUN Brussels for research relevant for this book. I am sincerely grateful to the two anonymous reviewers for their substantive engagement with this manuscript and extremely helpful comments.

Special thanks to Professor Risa Brooks, Marquette University, and Professor Peter Feaver, Duke University, for writing, respectively, the Foreword and the endorsement for this volume. Their seminal scholarship has been pivotal for advancing security studies and civil-military relations theories, and was sine qua non for this book. Enormous thanks to my supervisors in the research programme ‘United States, Europe and World Order’ at Johns Hopkins University, Paul H. Nitze SAIS, Professor Kristina Spohr and Professor Daniel Hamilton, who have been extremely accommodating of my research schedule and always responsive to my requests, with sagacious and wise pieces of advice. I am also profoundly appreciative of the preeminent comments provided to the previous versions of this work by Professor John Doyle, Dean and Director of the ‘Institute for International Conflict Resolution and Reconstruction’ at Dublin City University, a prescient scholar in peace and security studies, and to Associate Professor Walt Kilroy for relentless exceptional advice and help with my scholarly work and field research. Immense thanks go also to Emeritus Professor Subrata Mitra of Heidelberg University and Dr. Jivanta Schottli, Dublin City University. I am also profoundly indebted to my lovely colleagues at the Foreign Policy Institute and Kissinger Center for Global Affairs, Johns Hopkins University SAIS, Washington, DC, as well as to my former colleagues and peers at the School of Law and Government, Dublin City University, and at the

University of Konstanz, who have been always supportive and understandable of my literally continuous working, sometimes until midnight, at the weekends and on holidays - “When I come to the office you are here, when 1 leave the office you are here, do you ever go home?” was a question that 1 heard so many times in Dublin, Washington, DC, and Konstanz. And finally, I am profoundly appreciative to my family in Iasi, Romania, and my family in Emmendingen, Germany. Without my family in Romania, none of this would have been possible. 1 wholeheartedly thank my mom, dad, grandmother, sister, uncle and aunt, who have been always supportive of my endeavours and sometimes seemingly unattainably high levels of ambition. 1 was lucky to have studied and lived in seven countries on three continents. Coming along has not always been easy. I understood immediately the cause of the protests in Washington, DC, and the message of the Black Lives Matter movement. I dedicate this book to reaching more democratic, tolerant, just and peaceful societies in the United States, Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere in this great world.

 
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