For many years, the U.S. military has been among the most trusted of American institutions, certainly the most trusted part of the U.S. government. It has maintained that status despite its failure to achieve success in the post-9/11 wars. Americans seem to have accepted the argument that this failure has more to do with the political constraints placed on the military than on the military’s doctrine, planning, and execution. They have continued to accept the military’s self-image as a profession rather than a self-interested bureaucracy, and have supported its professional ethos understood as duty, honor, and sacrifice.
But attitudes toward the military seem to be changing. According to a recent survey conducted by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute, the number of Americans who express a great deal of confidence and trust in the military has dropped from 70 percent to 45 percent in just the past three years, including an 11 percent drop since February.Read More