The Armed Forces and Democracy in Latin America
The political role of the military is one of the most important questions facing Latin American societies seeking to consolidate new democracies. ... Show synopsis The political role of the military is one of the most important questions facing Latin American societies seeking to consolidate new democracies. Despite the return to elected civilian governments, undemocratic patterns of civil-military relations persist in much of the region. Still, the political power of the armed forces is varied and often less dominant than expected. In key countries, military influence is declining, although effective democratic control of the military remains elusive. In The Armed Forces and Democracy in Latin America, J. Samuel Fitch analyzes the contrasting patterns of military power in post-transition regimes. Drawing on a wide range of sources, he shows how learning from the past, the domestic environment, and the international context affect military beliefs about their role in politics. His analysis includes policy recommendations for U.S. and Latin American leaders trying to promote democratic civilian-military relations.