Can Hierarchy Dodge Bullets? Examining Blame Attribution in Military Contracting

Austin P. Johnson, & Kenneth J. Meier
The increased outsourcing of national security endeavors to private military companies (PMCs) raises questions concerning public evaluations of their performance and the extent to which government officials are held accountable. We use a survey experiment to test public blame attribution associated with a failed military operation that was conducted by either regular or private military personnel. Our findings suggest that there are multiple mediating pathways in the process of attributing blame in foreign policy. Furthermore,...
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