Paying the Human Costs of War: American Public Opinion and Casualties in Military Conflicts

Paying the Human Costs of War: American Public Opinion and Casualties in Military Conflicts

by Christopher Gelpi, Peter D. Feaver, Jason Reifler
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691139083

ISBN-13: 9780691139081

Pub. Date: 02/09/2009

Publisher: Princeton University Press

From the Korean War to the current conflict in Iraq, Paying the Human Costs of War examines the ways in which the American public decides whether to support the use of military force. Contrary to the conventional view, the authors demonstrate that the public does not respond reflexively and solely to the number of casualties in a conflict. Instead, the book

Overview

From the Korean War to the current conflict in Iraq, Paying the Human Costs of War examines the ways in which the American public decides whether to support the use of military force. Contrary to the conventional view, the authors demonstrate that the public does not respond reflexively and solely to the number of casualties in a conflict. Instead, the book argues that the public makes reasoned and reasonable cost-benefit calculations for their continued support of a war based on the justifications for it and the likelihood it will succeed, along with the costs that have been suffered in casualties. Of these factors, the book finds that the most important consideration for the public is the expectation of success. If the public believes that a mission will succeed, the public will support it even if the costs are high. When the public does not expect the mission to succeed, even small costs will cause the withdrawal of support.

Providing a wealth of new evidence about American attitudes toward military conflict, Paying the Human Costs of War offers insights into a controversial, timely, and ongoing national discussion.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691139081
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
02/09/2009
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
280
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS viii
LIST OF TABLES ix
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS xiii
CHAPTER ONE: Theories of American Attitudes toward Warfare 1
CHAPTER TWO: America's Tolerance for Casualties, 1950-2006 23
CHAPTER THREE: Measuring Individual Attitudes toward Military Conflict 67
CHAPTER FOUR: Experimental Evidence on Attitudes toward Military Conflict 98
CHAPTER FIVE: Individual Attitudes toward the Iraq War, 2003-2004 125
CHAPTER SIX: Iraq the Vote: War and the Presidential Election of 2004 167
CHAPTER SEVEN: The Sources and Meaning of Success in Iraq 188
CHAPTER EIGHT: Conclusion 236
BIBLIOGRAPHY 265
INDEX 283

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >