AUTHORAllison, Graham / Zelikow, Philip
TITLEEssence of Decision: Explaining the Cuban Missile Crisis
PUBLISHERAddison Wesley Longman, Inc.
CITYNew York, NY

This book is a study of the decision-making processes behind the Cuban Missile Crisis. The authors, Graham Allison and Philip Zelikow, utilize three decision-making models: the Rational Actor model (RAM or Model I), the Organizational Behavior model (Model II), and the Governmental Politics model (Model III). Model I sees decisions as being made by a monolithic entity, such as the United States or the Soviet Union; Model II describes decisions as being the output of government organizations; and Model III has decisions result from collaboration between political actors. After a chapter devoted to theoretical elaborations of those three paradigms, the authors use them to analyze the Cuban Missile Crisis, noting differences in emphasis that would yield different reasons for the placement of missiles in Cuba, the decision by the U.S. to blockade the island, and the Soviet Union's decision to remove the missiles. This is the second edition of the work, revised and updated after the disclosure of new documents on the crisis.

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