Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

The Cult of the Persuasive: Why U.S. Security Assistance Fails

  • Rachel Tecott Metz
| Winter 2022/23


The U.S. Army struggles to persuade military leaders in weak states to professionalize their forces. But it is often to the advantage of foreign leaders to keep their militaries weak. Why does the army not try to coerce partners instead of persuading them? It serves the army’s bureaucratic interests to prioritize its role as a fighting force rather than an advisory group. Leaders have developed an ideology—the cult of the persuasive—to advance their interests even at the expense of U.S. foreign policy goals. 

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

Rachel Tecott Metz, "The Cult of the Persuasive: Why U.S. Security Assistance Fails," International Security 47, no. 3 (Winter 2022/23): 95–135, 

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