The United States military plays a vital role in the international community. While the military plays a role in many areas around the world to include promoting diplomacy, by way of its protection of diplomatic posts worldwide, the most important role it plays in deterring war. The military plays a pivotal role in protecting the U.S., allies, as well as U.S. interests. While U.S. diplomacy and economic strength play significant roles in preventing conflict, the military is the ultimate deterrent (army.mil). The U.S. deters potential aggressors by persuading them that the cost of aggression far outweighs the benefit.
One area in which the U.S. military may play a role in the domestic arena, is supporting civilian law enforcement agencies. U.S. forces may be called upon to assist within the 50 states and its territories to assist with acts/threats of terrorism, as well as when requested to aid law enforcement agencies. The FBI recognizes four situations in which the military may be asked to assist domestic law enforcement involving a threat/act of terrorism (Blake, J.D., 2003). The four areas are: (a) providing technical support; (b) interdiction of an event and apprehension of the responsible party; (c) restoring law and often after the fact; (d) abating the consequences of a terrorist act.
When evaluating the role the U.S. military plays within our government, the first thing that comes to mind is the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the primary military adviser to POTUS, Secretary of Defense and the National Security Council (NSC) (jcs.mil). While the Chairman advises the previously mentioned individuals, each member of the Joint Chiefs are military advisers and may be called upon for their respective expertise regarding the branch of service they represent.
Blake, J. D. (2003, January 27). Terrorism and the Military’s Role in Domestic Crisis Management: Background and Issues for Congress. Retrieved August 2, 2018, from http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/crs/rl30938.pdf
Joint Chiefs of Staff. (n.d.). Retrieved August 2, 2018, from http://www.jcs.mil/About/
The Role of Forward Presence in U.S. Military Strategy. (2017, August). Retrieved August 2, 2018, from https://www.armyupress.army.mil/Journals/Military-Review/English-Edition-Archives/July-August-2017/Shunk-Forward-Presence/