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Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution, 1982. First Edition. First Printing. 190, footnotes, tables, index, usual library markings, residue of DJ having been pasted to the boards, edges blacked Studies in Defense Policy. For much of the nation's history, the participation of blacks in the armed forces was approximately in line with their proportion in the total population. This changed during the 1970s. By 1980 one of every three Army GIs and one of every five marines were black. Many Americans look with approval on the growth of black participation in military service, since it often affords young blacks educational, social, and financial opportunities that constitute a bridge to a better life not otherwise available to them. But for other Americans, the opportunities are outweighed by the disproportionate imposition of the burden of defense on a segment of the population. A socially unrepresentativ e force, it is argued, may lack the cohesion considered vital to combat effectiveness. Others fear that such a force would be unreliable if it were deployed in situations that would test the alliance of its minority members. The authors of this book examine evidence on both sides of the issue.