This paper analyzes the political economy of the creeping militarization of U.S. foreign policy. The core argument is that in integrating the “3D” approach—defense, development, and diplomacy—policymakers have assigned responsibilities to military personnel which go beyond their comparative advantage, requiring them to become social engineers tasked with constructing entire societies. Evidence from The U.S. Army Stability Operations Field Manual is presented to illustrate the wide scope of responsibilities assigned to the U.S. military. The tools of political economy are used to analyze some of the implications.
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