Explaining the Bay of Pigs and Vietnam, 1965 Decisions
ARMY WAR COLL CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
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The alternative conceptual frameworks for analyzing governmental behavior developed by Graham T. Allison in his book, Essence of Division, Explaining the Cuban Missile Crisis, are applied to the questions of why the Bay of Pigs operation of 1961 was approved by President John F. Kennedy, and why President Lyndon B. Johnson committed US combat forces to Vietnam in July 1965. The decisions are examined for two reasons. First, the paper attempts to determine if the frameworks or models produce different explanations of why the decisions were made and the value of the models in the governmental decisionmaking process. Secondly, the role of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff in those decisions is highlighted to provide examples of how national-level policy decisions are translated into military plans and operations. The study indicates the models are useful in the decisionmaking process suggests that behavioral aspects have considerable impact on the process and the models can assist in implementing decisions.
- Administration and Management
- Government and Political Science
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics