standing armies", or the role of the British military in the intellectual underpin- ings of the American Revolution. True, scholars are poling about in this maze even yet. The search for a "useable Indian" represents such new ideological stud- ies in colonial wars and violence. What is far more worrisome is today's igno- rance of the reasons why the colonial founding fathers throught as they did about major issues like incipient Cromwellianism. Maybe we are just desensitized as we move from Vietnam-King Richard I toward 1984 in time! Any new synthe- sis, however, can reevaluate still relevant mind-sets from an earlier period, but integrate them with other issues, the real events, and package in a manner to make them meaningful as well as understood for today's world also. 15
Somehow, all this must breathe with the life of "man". We increasingly depopulate our studies in history as we econmetricize, sociologize, or systemize earlier eras. We must return to living history in order to capture the terror and brute force - nay the thin thread of actual survivability of mankind - in this New World. Undoubtedly rawness of colonial existence will remain indistinct on a daily basis. Battles may have been only an orgiastic release from the tensions of daily survival. Still, we can do far more in word and image with the shabby but shrewd colonial contractor haggling with his nattily dressed counterpart from the regular commissariats of Spanish, French, or English armies. A little imagination - somehow now imparted to budding scholars in our universities today - could do wonders with such fascinating figures as British mercenary captain, Colonel Henry Bouquet, a Swiss by birth, redcoat by adoption, anathema to Guardsmen superiors and American town-fathers alike. Picture him stuck in a frontier hamlet like Carlisle, Pennsylvania, sweating to forge an Anglo-American combat team to conquer the French/Indian host, but at the same time probably worried more about his career pattern, promotion denials, and "ticket-punching" than the actual battle. Here then is that chord which unites soldiers across the centuries. Here lies the key to getting today's generations to "relate" to an earlier era through some semantic linkage; something real and vital to their own lifestyle. 16
This new synthesis would show what most of us have perceived about the military for sometime. Regulars or militia, Spanish, French, or British - it makes no difference - all represented a handy, organized arm of varying sizes for use by a government. Such a force was thus available as an instrument of imperial pol- icy, however that policy might be defined by home government. But such an institution also served as an instrument of some ill-defined local need and policy. But, whether in combat, exploration, administration, ideology and policy, or purveyor of civilization, colonial military establishments instituted the tradition of service to society and state in the New World. Other historians may already be plowing the furrows for us.17 It is time for military historians to step abbro- gating their responsibility to place their own craft in the broader context of man's past. The colonial Americas seem like a worthy place to meet the challenge!