Analysis Of Graham Allison And Philip Zelikow 's The International Arena

1827 Words Sep 27th, 2016 8 Pages
After reading Graham Allison and Philip Zelikow’s Essence of Decision the task of trying to make sense of complicated government actions in the international arena appears slightly less daunting. In a scientific method approach the authors create a test in which they present three models (1. Rational Actor Model, 2. Organizational Behavior Model, and 3. Governmental Politics Model) for analyzing a government’s actions and then demonstrate as well as compare their utility using the following three critical questions from the infamous Cuban Missile Crisis, why did the Soviet Union place strategic offensive missiles in Cuba, why did the United States respond with a naval quarantine of Soviet shipments to Cuba, and why did the Soviets withdrawal the missiles from Cuba? (Allison and Zelikow, p.5). Allison and Zelikow set up their test of these models with the idea that the rational actor model obscures many important answers to why a government adopted one course of action over the other (Allison and Zelikow p.3). It is their hypothesis and plan to show how their newly developed models, organizational behavior and governmental politics, will provide better tools for analysis to answer questions about government actions than the long standing rational actor model. While this is what the authors desire as an outcome of their test it becomes apparent that each model is equally beneficial and can aid in further refining explanations provided by the other, since each is focused on a…

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