A Polite Request and a Gun
This is perhaps a somewhat specialized case, in that the Iraqi troops were faced with overwhelming military superiority, and would almost certainly have been defeated in any case. However, other desperately overmatched armies have fought back fiercely, sometimes with very disagreeable consequences for an enemy confident in its superiority. On the other hand, there have been numerous recent cases where armies melted away in a similar fashion even when faced by enemies who on paper they could easily defeat.

More will be said below about military power and its relationship to power in general and to coercive force. The remarks above, however, are sufficient to illustrate the ambiguities of power. The remainder of this essay will consider the meaning of power by comparing and contrasting the definitions and analysis of Dennis Wrong, in his book Power: Its Forms, Bases, and Uses, with that of Peter Bachrach and Morton S. Baratz, in their article "Decisions and Non-decisions: An Analytical Framework."

As a sort of pre-definition, this discussion is concerned with power in the human, relational context, and particularly with political power in the broad sense -- including, for example, the power of employers over employees, but not the power of friendship or love. Nevertheless it is notable that the word "power" is associated not only with potentates and cops but with engines and with storms. Indeed, the power of car engines and electricity is p

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    Bachrach Baratz | Saddam Hussein | Analytical Framework | Richard Lionheart | Power Human | Baratz Wrong | Wrong Willing | Bachrach's Baratz's | bachrach baratz | exercise power | political power | coercive force | Bachrach Baratz's | definition power | willing obedience | bachrach baratz nd | power exercised | baratz nd | power power | force -- | Dennis Wrong | exercise power direct | saddam hussein recently | decisions non-decisions analytical | non-decisions analytical framework |  
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