The National Security Advisor and Presidential Decision Making
Publication Year: 2009
Published by: Texas A&M University Press
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I would especially like to thank former NSC advisors Brent Scowcroft and Anthony Lake for consenting to be interviewed on this project. Former NSC staff members and State Department officials Harold Saunders and Philip Zelikow also provided valuable input. As well, I would like to thank Fred I. Greenstein for reading an early draft of the manuscript and offering ...
Introduction: The Case for the Honest Broker Role
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Analysis of presidential decision making, particularly in the area of foreign and national security policy, is a critical area of research. It examines processes and dynamics that are truly consequential in their results. Its implications and findings bear great significance when put into practice. In studying decision making, much attention has focused on a range of...
CHAPTER 1. The Foundation of Honest Brokerage: Truman’s Executive Secretaries, Eisenhower’s Special Assistants
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The workings of the national security policy process during the Truman and Eisenhower administrations provide important insight into the origins and early operations of the National Security Council (NSC), the broader process of policy making, and the development of the NSC advisor’s role as an honest broker. The experience of the Eisenhower administration ...
CHAPTER 2. The Decline of Honest Brokerage: Bundy as NSC Advisor
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The appointment of McGeorge Bundy as John F. Kennedy’s NSC advisor marked an important watershed in the evolution of the role of the NSC advisor. Under his early direction much of the organizational apparatus of the Eisenhower-era national security system was dismantled. The role of honest broker as the center point of the NSC advisor’s responsibilities ...
CHAPTER 3. The Costs of Absent Brokerage: Henry Kissinger as NSC Advisor
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Examination of Henry Kissinger’s tenure as NSC advisor presents both a hard and an easy case for the notion that some conception of the honest broker role, albeit expanded, ought to be central to the NSC advisor’s position. The easy case is made by critics, such as Seymour Hersh and Christopher Hitchens among others, whose accounts portray him in a ...
CHAPTER 4. The Benifits of Balanced Brokerage: Scowcroft as NSC Advisor
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Analysis of Brent Scowcroft’s role as NSC advisor is particularly important in understanding how a modern, post-Eisenhower occupant of that role can meet some of the requirements of honest brokerage, yet at the same time take on—judiciously—other tasks such as serving as personal counselor to the president or acting as a diplomatic channel....
CHAPTER 5. Weak Brokerage, Insurgency, and Recovery: The Reagan NSC Advisors
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The six NSC advisors who served over the eight years of the Reagan presidency provide an interesting set of cases about how that role can be defined so differently, especially under one president. Some, such as Richard Allen, were largely coordinators. Others such as Frank Carlucci and Colin Powell were more honest brokers. Some, such as John Poindexter, ...
CHAPTER 6. The Costs of Failed Brokerage: Rice as NSC Advisor
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Analysis of the broker role in the George W. Bush presidency is important for a number of reasons. First, the rhetoric, if not at times the practice, of serving as an honest broker was, at least initially, embraced by Condoleezza Rice when she took over as NSC advisor. The broker role was also in George W. Bush’s mind when he picked Rice for the ...
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The role of the NSC advisor has evolved significantly since the Eisenhower years, a period of time when being a “neutral broker” occupied center space in how Robert Cutler and his two successors defined their jobs. Policy advocacy and increasing public visibility—and sometimes diplomatic efforts and political involvement—are components of the job for ...
APPENDIX A. Assistants to the President for National Security Affairs (NSC Advisors), since 1953
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APPENDIX B. The Others: Rostow, Brzezinski, Lake, Berger, and Hadley
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Page Count: 504
Illustrations: Bib. Index.
Publication Year: 2009