Introduction: Culture and the Military



The soldier’s expertise is war. War, according to Carl von Clausewitz, is “an act of force to compel our enemy to do our will” (von Clausewitz C, On war. Everyman’s Library, London, 1993, p. 83). It is a realm of expertise that puts extreme physical and mental demands on a person. It has long been accepted, however, that the “soft skill” which is commonly referred to as cultural competence, is an integral part of soldiering in today’s military operations. What cultural competence means in a military setting is the topic for this book, and this introduction summarizes and discusses some of the main issues raised in subsequent chapters.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Military AcademyNorwegian Defence University CollegeOsloNorway
  2. 2.Jackson School of International StudiesUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA

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