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The military covenant and British civil-military relations : letting the genie out of the bottle.

Forster, Anthony (2012) 'The military covenant and British civil-military relations : letting the genie out of the bottle.', Armed forces and society., 38 (2). pp. 273-290.


This article reviews debates surrounding the Military Covenant and explores its salience for contemporary British civil–military relations. It explores why the concept of the Military Covenant was created, the nature of subsequent debates, and finally it reflects on the wider implications of this research. Locating the Covenant in debates concerned with the changing nature of the military profession, this article argues that the Covenant was created in 2000 as a response to a challenge to the Army’s right to be different and thus its jurisdiction. However, tensions caused by new missions in Iraq and Afghanistan subsequently transformed the Covenant’s use and meaning. Senior commanders extended the use of the Covenant to establish the boundaries of their expertise and legitimacy, whilst external actors with a variety of competing interests used the Covenant to contest “authoritative discretion” of the military within a clearly delineated professional space.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Military profession, Military Covenant, Civil–military relations 'gap', Professional stress.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Record Created:20 Jul 2012 15:05
Last Modified:08 Aug 2012 09:47

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