Perilous Options
6%
off

Perilous Options : Special Operations as an Instrument of US Foreign Policy

4.16 (6 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 3 business days
When will my order arrive?

Description

Throughout the history of warfare, small battalions of warriors have repeatedly conducted sudden strikes on enemies deep within enemy lines with limited resources. These strikes rely largely on surprise, speed, and maneuver to defeat an often numerically superior enemy. In the past three decades, the United States has repeatedly used such special operations in an effort to achieve key foreign policy objectives. Many of these operations carried out by highly trained commando forces have failed. In Perilous Options: Special Operations as an Instrument of U.S. Foreign Policy, Lucien Vandenbroucke examines the use and misuse of special operations through an in-depth analysis of four operations - the Bay of Pigs invasion, the Sontay raid to rescue POWs in North Vietnam, the Mayaquez operation, and the Iran hostage rescue mission. He identifies recurrent problems in the way the United States government has prepared and executed such operations that account for their poor outcomes. These include faulty intelligence, poor interagency and interservice cooperation and coordination, inadequate information and advice provided to decisionmakers, wishful thinking on the part of decisionmakers, and micromanagement from outside the theater of operations. In addition to identifying the recurrent problems that have plagued U.S. special operations in the past. Vandenbroucke explores the extent to which recent efforts to revitalize the U.S. operations capability have addressed these problems, identifying additional changes that can improve the government's ability to plan, evaluate, and execute such operations. Drawing extensively on recently declassified government documents, interviews with keydecisionmakers and participants, and other primary material, Perilous Options is the first systematic in-depth analysis of the way the United States plans and executes strategic special operations. This-original analysis will be essential reading for scholars and students of United Statesshow more

Product details

  • Hardback | 268 pages
  • 158 x 234 x 26mm | 579.99g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • maps
  • 0195045912
  • 9780195045918

Back cover copy

Throughout the history of warfare, small battalions of warriors have repeatedly conducted sudden strikes on enemies deep within enemy lines with limited resources. These strikes rely largely on surprise, speed, and maneuver to defeat an often numerically superior enemy. In the past three decades, the United States has repeatedly used such special operations in an effort to achieve key foreign policy objectives. Many of these operations carried out by highly trained commando forces have failed. In Perilous Options: Special Operations as an Instrument of U.S. Foreign Policy, Lucien Vandenbroucke examines the use and misuse of special operations through an in-depth analysis of four operations - the Bay of Pigs invasion, the Sontay raid to rescue POWs in North Vietnam, the Mayaquez operation, and the Iran hostage rescue mission. He identifies recurrent problems in the way the United States government has prepared and executed such operations that account for their poor outcomes. These include faulty intelligence, poor interagency and interservice cooperation and coordination, inadequate information and advice provided to decisionmakers, wishful thinking on the part of decisionmakers, and micromanagement from outside the theater of operations. In addition to identifying the recurrent problems that have plagued U.S. special operations in the past. Vandenbroucke explores the extent to which recent efforts to revitalize the U.S. operations capability have addressed these problems, identifying additional changes that can improve the government's ability to plan, evaluate, and execute such operations. Drawing extensively on recently declassified government documents, interviews with keydecisionmakers and participants, and other primary material, Perilous Options is the first systematic in-depth analysis of the way the United States plans and executes strategic special operations. This-original analysis will be essential reading for scholars and students of United States foreign policy, contemporary diplomatic history, and political science.show more

Review quote

`His engaging, well-written book offers a compelling critique of US strategic special operations and valuable lessons for policymakers.' Political Studies `The author has made full use of the Freedom of Information Act to gain access to government documents and his research is impressive. The 43 pages of notes are essential for future researchers and there is an extensive select bibliography.' International Affairsshow more

About Lucien S. Vandenbroucke

Lucien S. Vandenbroucke is a Foreign Service Officer at the U.S. Department of State. He is a former Brookings Institution Research Fellow.show more

Rating details

6 ratings
4.16 out of 5 stars
5 33% (2)
4 50% (3)
3 17% (1)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X