President Carter Made During The Iranian Crisis Essay

808 Words Nov 12th, 2015 4 Pages
This paper identifies how the decisions President Carter made during the Iranian crisis primarily derived from the political climate of the time rather than from Carter’s own indecisiveness. Through an examination of both domestic politics and the advice given to Carter by top American officials, this paper illustrates how ordering a rescue mission proved the only viable option that President Carter ultimately heard from his advisors. The domestic politics during an election year mandated that President Carter only consider options that could resolve the crisis before the election. Similarly, many of Carter’s advisors misunderstood the difficulties of rescuing the hostages and consequently suggested ideas with little to no chance of success. These two factors thus severely constrained the choices available to Carter and greatly affected his eventual decision to authorize a rescue mission. The method of analysis undertaken in this paper has implications for future efforts to understand presidential actions, as it provides an alternative to some of the popular, existing methods of critiquing presidential decision making and allows one to gain a more holistic understanding of why presidents choose certain courses of action over others.

The Iranian hostage crisis served as one of the first challenges to modern America’s unilateral exertion of power in an increasingly volatile Middle East. Among those involved, no one faced more criticism for his or her role in the crisis than…

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