New PDF release: Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the

By Yuen Foong Khong

From global struggle I to Operation barren region hurricane, American policymakers have again and again invoked the "lessons of background" as they reflected taking their state to battle. Do those ancient analogies really form coverage, or are they essentially instruments of political justification? Yuen Foong Khong argues that leaders use analogies now not only to justify regulations but in addition to accomplish particular cognitive and information-processing initiatives necessary to political decision-making. Khong identifies what those projects are and exhibits how they are often used to provide an explanation for the U.S. determination to interfere in Vietnam. counting on interviews with senior officers and on lately declassified files, the writer demonstrates with a precision now not attained through past reports that the 3 most vital analogies of the Vietnam era--Korea, Munich, and Dien Bien Phu--can account for America's Vietnam offerings. a different contribution is the author's use of cognitive social psychology to help his argument approximately how people analogize and to give an explanation for why policymakers frequently use analogies poorly.

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Officials inflicted on the American public in the 1960s are likely to find the skeptics' hypothesis that analogies are used for justification and advocacy much more plausible than my argument that analogies are used for analysis. To begin with, numerous analogies were invoked, apparently without much discrimination. If one were to catalog the different analogies invoked in the one-year period under study, the list would run the gamut from Algeria to Manchuria to Turkey. A strong justificatory tone can often be detected in the way these analogies were used.

X. 3 Gelb and Betts, Irony of Vietnam. pp. 2, 25. THE perspective, it was important not to lose Vietnam. It was not so much because of territory, industrial potential, or democratic ideals. "4 This explanation of the United States' intervention in Vietnam contains broad essential truths. Policymakers were preoccupied with containing communism and maintaining credibility. Moreover, Vietnam is but one of many postwar cases of the use of force that seem explicable by the containment framework. The other cases are Korea (1950), Guatemala (1954), Lebanon (1958), Cuba (1961), the Dominican Republic (1965), and Grenada (1983).

7) and second, why policymakers often use analogies in suboptimal ways (chap. 8). Since the rationale for explaining the latter has been discussed in chap. 2, the discussion of decision-making in this chapter focuses exclusively on the selection of options. 48 CHAPTER 3 tween the fall of 1964 and the fall of 1965. By the fall of 1964, it was increasingly clear to U. S. policymakers that South Vietnam was in danger of losing the fight with the Vietnamese communists. S. combat troops to help stave off a South Vietnamese defeat.

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Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965 by Yuen Foong Khong


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