According to Lecture 16 combat, means productive action. Therefore, during the world wars, Korea or Vietnam wars it meant to fight. According to Kindsvatter (285), after analyzing or the four battles, he concluded that nothing much should be expected from war. According to his book American Soldiers, Kindsvatter starts by showing the soldiers motivation before the war. The soldiers applied selective service (rallying to the flag) as there inspiration.
The American soldiers on the battlefield experienced many commonalities. From the conflicts, the soldiers faced elements that are notable in many twentieth-century generations. They also, had a range of experience from fear, to significance of comradeship, to both emotional and physical privation. The wars had different intensities though, as the world wars were colossal struggles that needed the efforts of the whole nation. The Korea and Vietnam were just remote wars on land amid the confrontation of superpowers according to Kindsvatter. The Asian wars that are Korea and Vietnam needed no victory as there was in the world wars; therefore the experience was different from that in the world wars.
According to Kindsvatter chapter thirteen, the veteran who had served in the world wars and the war in Korea. He could highlight that the war wars were no parallel to the deadly patrol battles above truce village in Korea during the final year of the war.
Finally, the American soldiers missed the trench war that was the worst warfare. The American joined the war three years after their allies (Kindsvatter 289). Therefore, the question is would the American soldiers been ranked in the front line like the French had they joined the war early or would they have sustained high causalities similar to Canadian or Australian soldiers.
Bargaining and Coercion in World War 1
Coercion according to class notes lectures 11, is an external incentive to pursue someone into action, the spurs maybe threats or force. Bargaining binds the interests of the entire population to the states fate. After the end of World War 1, several historians tried to explain the reasons why the United States joined the war. According to this paper, we will look at the ideas brought about by Fromkin, and they include;
The decision of Germany to start unconditional submarine crash in 1917. The aggression by Germany made America to declare the war, but he blames Wilson for his insistence that required Germany to respect American rights in 1917. The rights for American were to travel and also, trade anywhere they liked. Also, the Zimmermann telegram threatened the American security. The telegram sent by the Foreign Minister of Germany, Arthur Zimmermann that was promising Mexico territory in the United States if they supported the border war. The telegram was seen as a culmination of Germany sabotage campaign done to draw away the American's attention from Europe.
The desire of Wilson to lead the reshaping of the postwar relations among nations, basing his agenda on collective security, self-determination and open trade (Fromkin 38). Wilson wanted to make the world to take the example of the American humanitarianism. According to Ray Stannard, the secretary in Wilson's press activities by Wilson wanted to make united states the leading nation in spreading capitalism as well as democracy. Therefore, United States was to take part in the war to get a lead role in tabling peace.
Finally, the geopolitical view by Wilson. The victory of Germany was a threat to the ability of America to steer head European power politics. Also, the fact that Germany was bringing the war closer to American shores allowed Wilson to enter into the war.
Structural theory and Cold War
The structural approach is a social framework that aims at bringing all units of the society together hence, promoting solidarity and social stability. The theory makes two assumptions were power distribution essence of power and anarchy. The Second World War had a significant change in the international politics structure. Although, the system was still anarchic the terms of power distribution that were fundamental were altered with by 1945.
The multipolar world was washed away, and two powers aroused that is the Soviet Union and the United States. The two were the new bipolar superpowers of the modern world. The shift impacted on the old power nations in Europe (France, Great Britain, and Germany). Their actions of freedom, security relations, and their fate were constraints in the power balance. The countries faced structural obstacles hence they could not producer their security thus they could no longer keep the internal balancing strategy; therefore they were forced to rely on another external balancing through seeking American protection by forming alliances. The European nations agreed to be security consumers and also, to accept the United States influence in affairs of Europeans.
France and Britain could not uphold their empires. Due to structural constraints the nations had no powers to keep dominating away from home as they had lost their capital cities. Their Economic powers were also weakened as well as their military. Also, the power balancing hindered European nations from power competitions. Hence America was the continental provider of security. Germany was no longer a threat to France security and vice versa.
The countries had more gain from choosing butter over the gun, and they could not match the Soviet Union on their own. Engaging in competitions among themselves was counterproductive to their national goals. Therefore, they had to find a solution on how to be consequential as the peace of Western Europe no longer lied on their relationship but that of the United States and the Soviet Union.
Combat Behavior during World War 1
The soldiers in World War 1 endured brutal warfare. For months, millions fought away from home, and they faced several experiences both emotional and physical. The war combined technological armies and mobilized men who walked to a deadly, horrific and terrifying battlefield.
In the late years of 19th-century technology come up with machine guns that were efficient defensive weapons, created a fire zone that was deadly (Fromkin 73). The laborers, as well as soldiers, dug trenches and placement of machine guns that they used to shield themselves from enemies and could attack without being exposed. Position gas was introduced in 1915, and war tanks in 1916 made the combat unpredictable.
Life experience was overwhelming, men had time to take part in their family activities, and they had shelter this was before the war. At the start of the war, artillery was used to destroy the known terrain, trees as well as buildings were reduced. Sounds of artillery and machine guns increased both friendly and from enemies. Soldiers were made to spend time on waits, in silent sections there was little war, and there was troop boredom as the expectations and excitement before the war were not met. The wait was monotonous but the order to attack changed everything.
Soldiers had to climb out of trenches, with their weapons and move to the enemy's field. The aim was to get to the enemy's defending troops. After eliminating the defenders, the attacking soldiers seized the location. The tactic was a theory as most attacks were unsuccessful, high casualties and the wounded were carried back for treatment, and the dead were buried if there was a break from fights.
Domestic Commitment and Compliance in War
Compliance during war times is brought about by the fact of following commands by soldiers from their seniors. On the other hand, domestic commitment is the degree of respecting the legal orders. According to Kindsvatter, in the militaries there are hierarchies, and there exists a chain of command, service members are required to follow the rules given by their superiors. Unauthorized absence and failure to comply with the orders on the battlefield it is treason hence punishable with death.
During the First World War, the French demonstrated high compliance. They began to resist and reject combat demands in 1917, and they were not willing to advance into enemy territories (Poli 142K). The soldiers from France displayed all levels of compliance. Although, not frequent they portrayed maximum non-compliance, minimum non-compliance, minimum compliance and maximum compliance.
Maximum noncompliance was noted where the soldiers turned against each other and killed their troop. During the period the militaries are afraid, and they tend to make peace with the enemies. Secondly minimum noncompliance it is where soldiers are disobedient, there are free riding and shirking. Also, minimum compliance, the soldiers follow commands minimally. They only engage in what they are required to, and finally, the maximum agreement is a situation where the soldiers engage in heroic acts.
The relative infrequency of War in East Asia and Relative Frequency of War in Europe past 1500
Formal and informal frameworks form East Asia countries; the frames include market economy, diplomatic norms, sovereignty state, and capitalism. The structure was formally in Europe, but from the 19th century, East Asia nations began to absorb them. The process of absorption was forcefully and took place gradually, the wave of industries from western countries and the imperial expansion got to the shores of nations in East Asia systematically. Opium wars followed the adaptation, collapse and decay of Qing dynasty portray how strong the waves were.
The encounter with western nations was only a story. There is a belief that East Asia was a world and had a distinct system before the entrance of western alternatives. Traditionally the system was a hierarchy, and China had both economic and geopolitical advantages, it gave the region stability for an extended period due to Confucianism influence. Harmony, nonviolence, and order helped it.
The Confucian teaching took place not only in China but also in states neighboring them such as Japan. The extent of the learning impacted in infrequency or no wars in the hierarchical structure. According to Andrade, as the narration advanced, there existed a constructive explanation in International relations among the East Asia countries. That shows the existence of different principles of organization that regulated interactions between states in the region.
Due to the existence of strong economies in European nations. The countries competed across lines of security, economics, and colonies, therefore, the free market structures that never regulated countries from their interactions lead to frequent wars in Europe past 1500.
Andrade, Tonio. The Gunpowder Age: China, Military Innovation, and the Rise of the West in World History. , 2017. Print.
Fromkin, David. Europe's last summer. Who started the Great War in 1914? Vintage Books. 2005
Kindsvatter, Peter S. American Soldiers: Ground Combat in the World Wars, Korea, and Vietnam. Lawrence, Kan: Univ. Press of Kansas, 2003. Print.
Poli 142k: Politics and warfare