Class Notes (1,100,000)
CA (650,000)
UTSG (50,000)
POL208Y1 (500)
Lecture 9

POL208Y1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: Excomm, Crisis Management, Strategic Dominance


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL208Y1
Professor
Lilach Gilady
Lecture
9

This preview shows pages 1-2. to view the full 8 pages of the document.
International Crisis 14:19
Why Study International Crises?
Most wars are preceded by crises and escalation
If want to understand war – we need to understand international crisis,
and particularly decision making during crisis
If we wish to avoid war we need to improve crisis management skills
Bipolarity; Nuclear weapons; the Cold War
The need to manage crises became very acute during the cold war
What is an international crisis?
Herman: An international crisis is composed of three criteria
1. Surprise
2. High-level of threat
3. Short decision time
We can create a typology of events by looking at the three dimensions
We can think of it as a cube
Situational Vs. Behavioural Explanations
What affects the outcome of a crisis?
Situational (structural) variables: The structure of the crisis (decision cube),
the structure of the system
Behavioural variables: the quality of decision-making and skill of decision
makers
Chicken Game
(r,c)
Straight Ahead Swerve
Straight ahead Crash (0,0) B – chicken (3,1)
Swerve A – chicken (1,3) Tie (2,2)
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com

Only pages 1-2 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

There are two Nash Equilibriums  the only way to survive in Chicken is to
always do the opposite of what your opponent does
Chicken: Summary
No dominant strategy
We want to do the opposite of what our opponent chooses to do
Uncertainty, high risk
The best way to play chicken is to avoid it
The rationality of irrationality
Being seen as a crazy actor is beneficial because it forces the other side to
being the chicken
Behaving irrationally can be rational in a game of chicken by forcing your
opponent to swerve
Brinkmanship: a policy of pushing a dangerous situation to the brink of
disaster (to the limits of safety) in order to achieve the most advantageous
outcome by forcing the opposition to make confessions
The Cuban Missile Crisis I
In 1959 Fidel Castro takes over Cuba
In the beginning it is not very clear whether or not Castro would become an
ally or an opponent to the US
November 1960 John F. Kennedy is elected
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version

Only pages 1-2 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

January 1961  Bay of Pigs
Failed attempt by CIA to topple Castro
Made it clear to Castro that the US will not stop until he is out of power
June 1962 USSR decides to introduce nuclear missiles to Cuba
Heart of the Cold War
US has nuclear missiles in Europe that can target Russian destinations
USSR does have missiles with such a long range to hit USA  causes an
imbalance
16 October 1962, US images  Crisis: Surprise, limited time, threat
Soviets are building a nuclear missile base in Cuba
Those nuclear missiles could be operative within 13 days
Ex-Comm: 20 senior decision makers; secret; constant meetings; JFK not a
member; recordings; 13 days
JFK is to come and get updates but he is not in the room
He does get recordings of the discussion
Does not want people to try to impress him, or guess what he wants to do;
wants open minds
Offered as an example of good decision making
Possible American Response:
Ignore the Missiles (swerve in the chicken game)
Use of diplomacy  diplomatic discussion
Not enough time for diplomacy
Could lose face
Not very clear what you could do
find more resources at oneclass.com
find more resources at oneclass.com
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version