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Questions tagged [military]

Questions related to that of the military of any country applicable. May include questions about the actions or inaction of the military or questions about the armed forces themselves or questions about government action related to the military.

63
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11answers
18k views

Why don't the other countries of Europe maintain as massive a military as Russia does?

The countries that are in my inquiry list are: --------+----------+-------------+-----------+--------- SN | Country | Population | GDP | DefExp --------+----------+-------------+---------...
45
votes
12answers
15k views

Why isn't demilitarization used as a defensive strategy?

If a country was to disband any and all of its military, and sell off its military assets, wouldn't it be an effective way to prevent an invasion? Because after this, it's clear to anyone that this ...
38
votes
2answers
12k views

What medical costs burden the military enough to warrant banning all transgender people?

Reported in Donald Trump bans transgender people from serving in the military President Trump tweeted: “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United ...
38
votes
3answers
8k views

What was Eisenhower's warning about?

Eisenhower in his farewell address warned the American people about the United States Military Industrial Complex and its emerging power. According to Wikipedia The US spends more on the military ...
35
votes
9answers
10k views

Why would Assad use chemical weapons in the civil war as of 2018?

The US has recently accused the Syrian government of using chemical weapons in the civil war. However it seems to me that Assad has little to gain from doing so: Chemical weapons give a casus belli ...
33
votes
2answers
7k views

Why was Congress able to create an Air Force without a constitutional amendment?

Article 1, Section 8 of the US Constitution enumerates the powers of Congress and includes the creation of military forces: To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use ...
27
votes
4answers
2k views

Is President Erdogan of Turkey staging a coup attempt?

With the currently unfolding events in Turkey (attempted coup by the military) one of my first harsher reactions is this: Is President Erdogan trying to have a quasi coup (or quasi terrorist plot) ...
24
votes
5answers
6k views

What incentives (or stated motives) did the US have to attack Syria?

What were the motives stated for for the US attacking Syria or incentives to do that? It doesn't seem like there was any immediate threat from Syria to the US. (After all, they neither have ICBM's ...
24
votes
1answer
6k views

Do POWs typically get paid for their prison time?

The recent release of Craig Bergdahl has me wondering about the status of prisoners of war from a strictly economic standpoint. When a soldier is POW, he is clearly not in a position to be able to ...
22
votes
5answers
2k views

Why does the United States still keep substantial numbers of soldiers in Europe?

If I recall correctly, the US maintains about 30,000 men in Germany alone and thousands more in different European countries. I understand the need to project power and to rapidly deploy to any ...
20
votes
1answer
10k views

What were the military men doing behind Donald Trump when he began his speech?

Shortly after Trump was sworn in and began giving his speech there was a group of military men that lined up in formation behind him. They stood there for a short time before walking back. What were ...
19
votes
7answers
6k views

Why won't Israel just capture Palestine?

There are many small-scale conflicts currently going on around the world between two countries,where one or both deny other's right on some piece of land. like India vs Pakistan on Kashmir. N.Korea ...
18
votes
3answers
4k views

Why does Trump want to increase military spending?

From what I understand, Trump is an isolationist / non-interventionist, at least more so than previous presidents. On the other hand, Trump wants to massively increase military spending: [Trump] ...
18
votes
1answer
611 views

How are women integrated into the North Korean military?

Background Korean People's Army soldiers (per Wikipedia) About 25% of North Korea's population is in either an active duty role or a reserve/paramilitary role in the Korean People's Army, and North ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

What's the point of having thousands of nuclear missiles?

According to Wikipedia, the US and Russia has close to 8,000 nuclear warheads each. Other known nuclear powers, the UK, France, China, India, Pakistan and Israel has a couple of hundreds each. The ...
17
votes
4answers
6k views

Why is the US president commander-in-chief?

Democratic governments are often set up in such a way that no single person holds too much power, even the president/prime minister/etc. In the US, you e.g. have the Congress. This means that if the ...
17
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4answers
3k views

Politicians to remove sexism in registration for potential conscription in the USA?

According to Wikipedia, only men are required to register for the draft with the Selective Service System in the US. Some feminists want equal conditions for men and women. Are there any USA ...
16
votes
8answers
9k views

How are states supposed to protect themselves when the National Guard is under the federal government?

Recall the second amendment: A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. Great, so states have ...
16
votes
2answers
997 views

When may the President of the United States order military action without congressional approval?

The USA has many times in the past taken military action with only the President's order to back it up legally. It was Jefferson that set the precedent of using the military to enforce foreign policy ...
15
votes
10answers
2k views

How could it happen that Ukraine soldiers did not try to defend against the invasion?

What I do not understand about the current Crimea crisis, is how could this invasion be successful without anyone firing a gun. Weren't there ukranian soldiers stationed in Crimea? Maybe the soldiers ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

What are the arguments for the militarisation of the European Union?

Since Maastricht the European Union has been developing a military element. Firstly with the Common Foreign and Security Policy, then (via the Western European Union vehicle) the European Security and ...
13
votes
2answers
18k views

May the US president launch a nuclear bomb without any oversight on any target?

According to Article II, Section 2, Clause I of the Constitution, the President of the United States is commander in chief of the United States Armed Forces. Source: Wikipedia How does launching a ...
12
votes
2answers
356 views

Why would a US armed forces branch not give back a property (it took over during wartime) for free?

Short context (inspired by a post on Aviation.SE): In 1941 the Navy took over Bennett airfield in NYC and banned all commercial and civilian flights. After WWII the airfield was meant to return to ...
11
votes
1answer
942 views

Do countries inform each other about ballistic missile test launches?

Informing potential adversaries about intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) test looks logical, to not trigger false alert. I can't find any info - do countries do it? Do some protocols exist for ...
11
votes
1answer
279 views

How did Turkey manage to create a springboard for its defense industry so fast?

As far as I recall, Turkey was mostly dependent on the USA and Israel for its defense needs until recently. Turkey sought Israeli assistance to modernize its large fleet of F-4 Phantoms and bought ...
10
votes
6answers
6k views

What makes countries dependent on US-supplied defense equipment?

I was reading that the USA is blocking Turkey from acquiring F-35s. Turkey is reportedly anxious, and throwing some hollow threats. I have two questions regarding this: Why are countries like Turkey ...
10
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5answers
5k views

What exactly is the purpose of the Non-Proliferation Treaty when nuclear weapons can be substituted with conventional explosives?

With the destructive power of nuclear weapons, it's understandable the concerted effort by many world bodies to vigorously regulate and control the ownership of nuclear weapons. The NPT is one of such ...
10
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2answers
1k views

Who legislates military law?

Where does United States military law come from? I'm vaguely aware that the military is governed by the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). This power stems from the constitutional authority of ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

How would Germany increase its military size beyond 370,000 personnel?

A followup question from this answer. Germany is currently bound by the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany from 1990. It, among other things, prevents Germany from having over 370,...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Why does the US still have military bases in Japan and South Korea?

Why does the United States still have military bases in Japan and South Korea? As far as I'm aware, the bases are large, active, and the source of a reasonable amount of controversy within the host ...
9
votes
2answers
7k views

Who controls the British Armed Forces?

I'm trying to research this for a friend. I understand that the government of the United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy, in which the Queen is the head of state and the Prime Minister is the ...
8
votes
4answers
714 views

Did Turkey take revenge of Russian attacks on ISIS by downing the plane?

Is it possible that Turkey downed the Russian jet because they did not want Russia to be attacking ISIS (and maybe the Syrian Rebels)? It is quite clear that Turkey is the one who buys Oil from ISIS ...
8
votes
1answer
440 views

How much do those bombs and missiles cost which are not used up and get outdated?

Big military powers are in a constant need to improve their weapons otherwise they might lag behind. This means that there must be tons of unused bombs, missiles, etc.. which they didn't use up but ...
8
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3answers
570 views

Is America the only country where army officer appointments have to be confirmed by congress?

Are there any other countries where army officer appointments have to be confirmed by parliament/congress?
7
votes
2answers
383 views

Under what circumstances are military personnel not combatants?

In U.S. policy, when are military personnel not combatants? This question is inspired by a comment that jpmc26 left on my answer here. The comment says: I'm not sure "noncombatant targets" ...
7
votes
3answers
939 views

Why does USAF buy F-35?

The F-35 program is justified on two grounds: F-22 is too expensive (similar to F-16 being the cheaper alternative to F-15) F-35 can be used by AF (F-35A), Marines (F-35B) and Navy (F-35C) (similar ...
7
votes
2answers
190 views

Have congressional hearings any effect concerning military scandals?

While I was researching the topic of the F-35 I noticed a certain pattern in military politics which comes up again and again. In the TFX program Boeing was the clear winner of the Request For ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Why did Obama commute Chelsea Manning's sentence?

I honestly don't understand, she leaked hundreds of thousands of US government documents to WikiLeaks when she was a Private in the U.S. military, and she's going to be released on 17 May 2017 after ...
6
votes
2answers
976 views

Why are partisan groups in Afghanistan called terrorists?

In the WWII the same people who were hiding in the mountains of Yugoslavia, Slovakia, Romania, Ukraine etc. were called terrorists by Nazis too. Today they are known as partisans and are respected in ...
6
votes
3answers
292 views

Are there examples of military forces that aren't rigidly authoritarian?

We commonly think of military forces as being rigidly hierarchical, and committed to following orders to a suicidal extreme for individual soldiers. But, are there examples of military forces ...
6
votes
2answers
544 views

Do any European politicians advocate shutting down American bases in Europe?

The USA has military bases all over the world (including in some EU countries such us Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Greece) which is expensive to their economy. List of military bases here. On ...
6
votes
2answers
249 views

Criticism of Trump's drawdown of forces in Afghanistan, what would be the alternatives?

We've recently seen high level departures from defence officials in the Trump administration. And criticism and concern by allied governments. Those frustrations are motivated largely by the US ...
6
votes
2answers
506 views

Why is Russia going to withdraw from Syria?

According to this news article, President Putin says that Russia will start withdrawing from Syria, after a relatively brief presence in the area. Why does he choose to withdraw at this moment, and ...
6
votes
1answer
390 views

What are the key differences between the Stolen Valor Act of 2005 and the Stolen Valor Act of 2013?

I read that there were supreme court decisions overturning stolen valor convictions based on the first amendment after the 2005 act became law. Is there a significant difference in the 2013 act ...
6
votes
2answers
215 views

Is Terrorism defined by its purpose or its effect?

Britannica said this: Terrorism, the systematic use of violence to create a general climate of fear in a population And I got this from wikipedia: In its broadest sense, terrorism is any act ...
5
votes
1answer
303 views

Why are military academy cadets nominated by congress members?

On a related note, students at the military academies are nominated by individual senators and congressmen. Upon graduation, Congress passes a law to commission the new officers. (from a recent answer ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

What does it mean when the US military “fires” a commander?

What does "firing" mean when the US military "fires" a commander? Is it different than being "relieved of duty"? (E.g., it was reported today in the NY Post that in the aftermath of the incident ...
5
votes
1answer
271 views

Did McCain change his opinion on transgender people in the military?

See this reddit thread for Trump supporters. The indication seems to be that McCain changed his stance on transgender troops in the military just to get back at Trump. Is this true? The first ...
5
votes
2answers
148 views

Negative impact of the Ottawa treaty / Convention for Cluster Munitions for the modern army?

The Ottawa treaty prohibits anti-personal mines, the Convention for Cluster Munitions prohibits cluster munitions. Several nations with modern armies are signatories of the treaty. I was wondering if ...
5
votes
0answers
107 views

Is a professional army more likely to act against its own people than a conscript army?

Is there data about how the mode of a states army affects the probability that it is employed against its own people? I mean is it more liklier that the army is used to supress the own people or a ...