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

Analogies at War

Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu, and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965

Paperback Published: 1st July 1992
ISBN: 9780691025353
Number Of Pages: 304

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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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One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 1993 "Khong's interviews and newly declassified documents make a compelling case the American decision-makers in 1965 used historical analogies not only to justify decisions but to make them, most notably in the process of rejecting options."--Foreign Affairs

List of Figures and Tables
The Argument
Analogical Reasoning in Foreign Affairs: Two Viewsp. 3
The AE Frameworkp. 19
America's Vietnam Optionsp. 47
The Cases
Containment, Analogies, and the Pre-1965 Vietnam Decisionsp. 71
Koreap. 97
Dien Bien Phup. 148
Munich and the 1930sp. 174
The Implications
The Psychology of Analogical Reasoningp. 209
Conclusionp. 251
Bibliographyp. 265
Indexp. 279
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691025353
ISBN-10: 0691025355
Series: Princeton Paperbacks
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 304
Published: 1st July 1992
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.37  x 1.96
Weight (kg): 0.42