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Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965 (Princeton Paperbacks)

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Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965 (Princeton Paperbacks) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From World War I to Operation Desert Storm, American policymakers have repeatedly invoked the "lessons of history" as they contemplated taking their nation to war. Do these historical analogies actually shape policy, or are they primarily tools of political justification? Yuen Foong Khong argues that leaders use analogies not merely to justify policies but also to perform specific cognitive and information-processing tasks essential to political decision-making. Khong identifies what these tasks are and shows how they can be used to explain the U.S. decision to intervene in Vietnam. Relying on interviews with senior officials and on recently declassified documents, the author demonstrates with a precision not attained by previous studies that the three most important analogies of the Vietnam era--Korea, Munich, and Dien Bien Phu--can account for America's Vietnam choices. A special contribution is the author's use of cognitive social psychology to support his argument about how humans analogize and to explain why policymakers often use analogies poorly.

Synopsis:

From World War I to Operation Desert Storm, American policymakers have repeatedly invoked the "lessons of history" as they contemplated taking their nation to war. Do these historical analogies actually shape policy, or are they primarily tools of political justification? Yuen Foong Khong argues that leaders use analogies not merely to justify policies but also to perform specific cognitive and information-processing tasks essential to political decision-making. Khong identifies what these tasks are and shows how they can be used to explain the U.S. decision to intervene in Vietnam. Relying on interviews with senior officials and on recently declassified documents, the author demonstrates with a precision not attained by previous studies that the three most important analogies of the Vietnam era--Korea, Munich, and Dien Bien Phu--can account for America's Vietnam choices. A special contribution is the author's use of cognitive social psychology to support his argument about how humans analogize and to explain why policymakers often use analogies poorly.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. 265-277) and index.

Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables
Acknowledgments
Abbreviations
Pt. IThe Argument
Ch. 1Analogical Reasoning in Foreign Affairs: Two Views3
Ch. 2The AE Framework19
Ch. 3America's Vietnam Options47
Pt. IIThe Cases
Ch. 4Containment, Analogies, and the Pre-1965 Vietnam Decisions71
Ch. 5Korea97
Ch. 6Dien Bien Phu148
Ch. 7Munich and the 1930s174
Pt. IIIThe Implications
Ch. 8The Psychology of Analogical Reasoning209
Ch. 9Conclusion251
Bibliography265
Index279

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691025353
Subtitle:
Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965
Author:
Khong, Yuen Foong
Author:
Yuen Foong Khong
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton, N.J. :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Military - General
Subject:
United states
Subject:
International Relations
Subject:
Vietnamese conflict, 1961-1975
Subject:
Decision-making
Subject:
Southeast Asia
Subject:
1961-1981
Subject:
International relations -- Decision making.
Subject:
United States Foreign relations 1963-1969 Decision making.
Subject:
Vietnamese Conflict, 19
Subject:
Asia - Southeast Asia
Subject:
American history
Subject:
Political Science and International Relations
Subject:
World History/Comparative History
Subject:
Political Sc
Subject:
ience and International Relations
Subject:
World History / Comparati
Subject:
ve History
Subject:
Vietnam War, 1961-1975 - United States
Subject:
World History-Southeast Asia
Subject:
Political Science and International
Subject:
Relations
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Princeton Paperbacks
Series Volume:
no. 1
Publication Date:
April 1992
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
9.25x6.05x.77 in. .93 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Children's » General
History and Social Science » Military » General
History and Social Science » Military » General History
History and Social Science » Military » Strategy Tactics and Deception
History and Social Science » Military » Vietnam War
History and Social Science » World History » General
History and Social Science » World History » Southeast Asia

Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965 (Princeton Paperbacks) New Trade Paper
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Product details 304 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691025353 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , From World War I to Operation Desert Storm, American policymakers have repeatedly invoked the "lessons of history" as they contemplated taking their nation to war. Do these historical analogies actually shape policy, or are they primarily tools of political justification? Yuen Foong Khong argues that leaders use analogies not merely to justify policies but also to perform specific cognitive and information-processing tasks essential to political decision-making. Khong identifies what these tasks are and shows how they can be used to explain the U.S. decision to intervene in Vietnam. Relying on interviews with senior officials and on recently declassified documents, the author demonstrates with a precision not attained by previous studies that the three most important analogies of the Vietnam era--Korea, Munich, and Dien Bien Phu--can account for America's Vietnam choices. A special contribution is the author's use of cognitive social psychology to support his argument about how humans analogize and to explain why policymakers often use analogies poorly.
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