Decision making in the grey zone : lessons from Truman, Eisenhower, and the development of nuclear strategy
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The character of modern conflict is changing. The foundations of the international system are shifting as near peer adversaries, regionally destabilizing revisionists, and global networks of terror and crime mix in an environment awash in new technology. Unfortunately, the strategic paradigms that have defined U.S. policy since 1945 are inadequate in the face of this new reality. The focus of this study is not the creation of a new paradigm; instead, it seeks to define the contours of strategic decision-making that best serve the modern moment. Seeking such a model, I analyze the assumptions and processes at play in the creation of nuclear strategy during the Truman and Eisenhower administrations. Their approaches to the new strategic reality that nuclear weapons introduced were quite different, and the lessons those differences provide are instructive for today.