Introduction to International Relations Lecture Brink - PDF document

Introduction to International Relations Lecture  Brink
Introduction to International Relations Lecture  Brink

Introduction to International Relations Lecture Brink - Description


Slantchev Department of Political Science University of California San Diego May 11 2005 Overview Having discussed strategies of coercion in two generic situations deterrence and compellence we now turn to the problem of using inherently incredible ID: 63662 Download Pdf

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IntroductiontoInternationalRelationsLecture9:BrinkmanshipProfessorBranislavL.SlantchevDepartmentofPoliticalScience,UniversityofCalifornia–SanDiegoMay11,2005 Havingdiscussedstrategiesofcoercionintwogenericsituations(deterrenceandcompellence),wenowturntotheproblemofusinginherentlyincrediblethreatstogainbargainingleverage.Somethreatsinvolveactionsthataretoopainfulforboththeactormakingthemandtherecipient.Ifthepainthatthethreatenerwouldcausehimselfbytheexecutionofthepromisedactionistoogreat,thencommitmentstrategiesofthetypesthatwediscussedmaybetoodangerousfortheycanirrevocablycommithimtoacourseofactionfromwhichthereisnoescape.Wenowstudyalternativeriskstrategies,orbrinkmanship.Thesedonotinvolvepre-commitmenttacticsbutinsteadrelyonagenerationofrisk.WestudytheSixDayWarof1967asanexampleofabrinkmanshipthatwentoverthebrink. Becauseitmayberationaltouseforceundercertaincircumstances,thethreattouseforcebecomesaforeign-policytoolthatcouldbeusedtoachievebetterbargainingoutcomesinmixed-motivesituations.Weexaminedtwoarchetypalsituations.Inthe“rst,anactorattemptstoestablishacrediblecommitmenttorespondtoattemptstochangethestatusquo;thatis,hetriestoopponentfromdoingsomethinghedoesnotlike.Inthesecond,anactorat-temptstoestablishacrediblecommitmenttocontinuein”ictingdamageonhisopponentwhiletheopponentpersistsinacourseofaction;hetriestohisopponenttoundohisalterationofthestatusquo.Wediscussedseveralstrategiesthatactorscanusefordeterrenceandcompel-lencepurposes,andnotedthattherearemanywaysonecouldalterthestrategiccalculationsoftheotheractor.Althoughweanalyzedexamplesthatinvolvedmilitarysituations,itisimportanttorealizethattheconceptsaremuchmoregeneralandcanbeappliedinwidevarietiesofcircumstances.Atanyrate,thethreattouseforcecouldberegardedasaninstrumentofpolicy,muchliketheClausewitzianconceptionofwar.Until,thatis,youconsiderthearrivalofnuclearweapons.Howcouldaninstrumentofsuchenormousdestructivepowereverbeutilizedforpoliticalpurposes?Thenuke,butitsverynature,seemstodefyrationaluse.Eventhethreattouseitseemsincredibleagainstanopponentsimilarlyequipped.Thenuclearweaponsseemtohavecausedarevolutioninmilitarythinking,inparticularinrelatingmilitarymeanstopoliticalendsbyundoingthecredibilityofthethreattoemployit.nuclearrevolutionlaidbarethecredibilityprobleminawaythatprevi-ousweaponsdidnotmakepossible.First,eveninacrisisbetweenanuclearandnon-nuclearstate,itisnotclearthatthenuclearstatecancrediblythreatentoresorttonuclearweapons.Itissimplyhardtoimagineathreatthatinvolvesrat-tlingtherocketsoveranissueofperipheralinterest,andalmostanythingshortofonesownsurvivalcouldbedeemedperipheralwhenitcomestonukes.To-day(nowthatweknowtheeectofanuclearstrike),launchingnukesagainstanon-nuclearstatewouldcauseimmensemoralopprobrium,andwouldnotbetoleratedbycitizensinanycountrythathasarepresentativegovernment.TheU.S.didmaintainapostureofmassiveretaliation,accordingtowhichitcouldpotentiallyresorttonukesinresponsetocrisesthroughouttheworld(liketheKoreanWar,forexample).Butiftheexplosionofsuchcrisesisanyindication,thisparticularthreatwasnotbelievedbyvariousadversarieswhowentaheadSecond,inacrisisbetweentwonuclearpowers,thedangersmultiplytoadegreethatitmakestheresorttotheweaponappeartotallyirrational.Threat-eningwithnukes,aswediscussedwhenwetalkedaboutcrisisstability,couldbeinherentlydangerousifitcancausethereciprocalescalationoffearofsur-priseattack.Andwhenthetwosideshavesecond-strikecapability,thenusingnukesseemstobecomecompletelyirrationalbecauseregardlessofwhostrikes“rst,bothopponentswouldbesurelydestroyed. crucialtoourunderstandingofwarandpeace.Crises,however,arenotlimitedtomilitarycon”icts.Justaboutanymixed-motivebargainingsituationinwhichtheactorsworkwithasenseofurgency(e.g.againstadeadlineofsomesort)wouldqualifyasacrisis.Ofcourse,mil-itarycrisesthatinvolvepotentiallythedeathsofmanyandthedestructionofpropertyarethatmuchmoreintenseanddangerousthanordinaryones.Webeginwithaverysimpleformulationofcrisisbargaining,onethathasbeenextensivelyusedtodescribethetensedynamicsofthesituation.Thisistheso-calledGameofChicken.Theoriginalgamegoessomethinglikethis.Twoguysinsouped-upcarsraceagainsteachotherdownanarrowroadinfrontofacheeringcrowd.Eachcanchoosetokeepgoingorswerve(weassumethatwhenevertheyswerve,theyswervetotheright).Iftheybothswerve,theyavoidcollisionandneithergainsanything.Ifoneswervesbuttheotherkeepsgoing,the“rstlosesfaceandisdeclaredawimp,andtheotherisdeclaredthetoughguy,winsinreputationandtheadmirationofthegirlsinthecrowd.Ifneitherswerves,theycollideanddie(wedonotknowwhetherthisresultsinreputationalgainorloss).Whatwouldtheactorsdo?Ifoneoftheguysbelievesthattheotherwillkeepgoing,thentheonlyrationalresponseistoswerve.Conversely,iftheotherguyknowsthathisopponentwillswerve,towhichtherationalresponseistokeepgoing.Theoutcomeoftheconfrontationisthatnocollisionoccurs:oneoftheguysswervesandtheotherwins.Thatdoesnotseemtohelpusalotthoughbecausetherealquestionis:Whoisgoingtobetheonetoswerve?Howdoesoneguyknowthattheotherwouldswerve,andhowdoestheotherknowthatthe“rstonewillkeepgoing?Iftheybothknowthis,thenwhydoesthewimpevenbotherenteringthecontest?Hemightaswellconcededefeatattheoutsetandsavethegas.Onlyifthemenaresomewhatuncertainabouteachothersrashnessdowehavearealcontestandarealcrisis.Letsthinkofthesituationasagameinwhichtheplayersarenotquitesureabouteachothersresolve.Suppose,forexample,thatyouropponentcanvaryintoughnessfrombeingquitewimpish(andthereforelikelytoswerve)tobeingquitefoolhardy(andthereforelikelytokeepgoing).He,ofcourse,knowshisownlevelofwimpishnessŽbutyoudont.Similarly,heisnotawarejusthowfoolhardyyouare.Naturally,boastingaboutonestoughnessisunlikelytocon-vinceanyone,soatestisrequired.Wearenowinaracethathasthepotentialtoendindisaster:Eachguycouldkeepgoinginthehopesthattheotherwouldturnouttobelessunstableandswerve“rst;iftheyreachapointofno-return,theycouldeasilydie.Whenactorshaveasymmetricinformation,therealwaysexistsarealriskofdisaster(thisisanalogoustotheexplanationforwarasabargainingbreakdownduetoasymmetricinformation).Eachactorpresseshisadvantageasfaraspossiblewithoutknowingexactlywheretheopponentsbreakingpointis.Youcanseehowtheycangooverthebrinkwhiletakinganescalatingsuccessionof committedirrevocablyalready.Allofthesecommitmentdevicesareinherentlyextremelydangerousbecauseifbothactorssucceedinestablishingacrediblecommitmentnottoswerve,disasteriscertain.Sincetheoutcomeissoawful,itisperhapsexcusabletodisbelievethatactorswouldseektocommitthemselvesinsuchanirrevocablefashion.Morelikely,theywouldattempttoleaveanescapeclausethatwouldhelpthemgetoutofthesituationshoulditbecomeunbearablyhotŽ.(And,justasnaturally,eachactorwouldexpecttheothertohaveleftanescapeclauseforhimself,andwouldcon“dentlypressforwarduntiltheybothcollide!)Sometimes,athreatissimplytoobigtobecredible.Weshalldiscussthreestrategiesthatmayhelpwithusingthreatswithdisastrousoutcomes.First(andquickly)weanalyzeastrategyofstrategicirrationality.Next,welookattwostrategiesshareanunderlyinglogicbetweenthemselves.Oneisthethreatthatleavessomethingtochanceandtheotheristhestrategyof.Thesestrategiesdependonthewillingnessoftheplayerstorunariskofundesiredandunintendedconsequences.2IrrationalitytotheRescue?LetsbeginwithonepossiblesolutionŽtothecredibilityproblem.IfIcancon-vinceyouthatIamirrationalorstupidandthereforecannotunderstandyourcommitment,Irendermyselfimmunetoyourthreatsandwinbecauseyou(be-ingtherationalandsmartone)wouldhavenochoicebutbackdown.Childrenoftenunderstandthismuchbetterthanadults.Akidpretendingtobedumbornothearissimplyimplementingaprettygoodtacticofmakinghimselfunavail-abletoreceiveinformationaboutyourverycrediblecommitmentthatisnotinitsinterest.Akidknowsthatifheacknowledgeshearinghismomcallinghimtocomehome,hehasnochoicebutgohomeorelse.Playingwithabandonandignoringhereversternershrieksisamuchbetterstrategy,whichheonlyhastodefendwiththeinnocently-soundingIdidnothearyou!ŽThisideaoffosteringstrategicirrationalityisnotlimitedtochildren.Pres-identNixon,forexample,onceremarkedtohisNationalSecurityAdvisorandlaterSecretaryofStateHenryKissingerthatitwouldbegoodfortheRussiansandtheNorthVietnamesetothinkthathewasoutofcontrolŽandsocouldusethenukesifanagreementonpeaceisnotachievedsoon.Thiswasanattempttoescapetherationallogicthatprecludedtheuseofnuclearsinsuchaperiph-eraltheater.Dontbelieveme?HeresPresidentNixonin1968onhisMadmanIcallittheMadmanTheory...IwanttheNorthVietnamesetobelieveIvereachedthepointwhereImightdoanythingtostopthewar.Welljustslipthewordtothemthat,forGodssake,youknowNixonisobsessedaboutCommunism.Wecantrestrainhimwhenhesangry„andhehashishandonthenuclearbuttonŽ„andHoChiMinhhimselfwillbeinParisintwodaysbeggingforpeace. 3RiskStrategies:BrinkmanshipBrinkmanshipmeanstakinganissuetothelimit,totheedgeofthecli,hope-fullywithoutgoingoverthebrink.Itdoesnothavetobewar,anyoutcomethatismutuallyhurtfulissuitableŽforbrinkmanship.Rockingaboatintheopenseawhenneithertherockernortheotherpersoncanswim,isbrinkman-ship.Refusingtoagreeonasettlementuntilthe11thhourbeforeadeadline,isNotethatitsonlybrinkmanshipisboththeactordoingitandhisopponentaresubjectedtograverisks.Itdoesnotworkifonlyoneofthemis.IfIrocktheboatandcannotswimbutyoucan,thenIamnotwalkingonthebrink,Iamjustanidiot.IfIrefusetonegotiateacontractanduponitsexpirationIamoutofajobandyouarefreetohirescabs,thenIamnotengaginginbrinkmanship,Iamgoingyouafavorbyconvenientlyremovingmyselffromyourconsideration.Similarly,ifIamtheonlyonewhocanswim,thenmyactionissimpleextortion.WegenerallyreservethetermbrinkmanshipŽforsituationswherethedisasterifpainfultoeveryoneinvolved,andsoeachactorhasincentivestotrytoavoidHeresSecretaryofStateJohnFosterDulles,calledthemasterofbrinkman-shipanddiplomacy,ŽwritinginLifeMagazinein1956:Youhavetotakechancesforpeace,justasyoumusttakechancesinwar.Somesaythatwewerebroughttothevergeofwar.Ofcoursewewerebroughttothevergeofwar.Theabilitytogetthevergewithoutgettingintothewaristhenecessaryart...Ifyoutrytorunawayfromit,ifyouarescaredtogotothebrink,youarelost.Wevehadtolookitsquareintheface...Wewalkedtothebrinkandwelookeditintheface.Wetookstrongaction.Schellingoersthefollowinganalogytohelpexplaintheideaofbrinkman-ship.Imagineachessgame.YouareplayingtheWhitesandIamplayingtheReds.Thegame,asusual,canendinwin,loss,oradraw.However,wenowmodifythegamebyaddingafourthoutcomecalled,whichisstrictlyforbothplayersthansimplylosingthegame.Forexample,ifdisasteroccurs,webothpayhefty“nestoathirdparty.Thenewrulesspecifyveryclearlywhatcausesdisaster.Speci“cally,ifeitherplayerhasmovedhisknightacrossthemiddleoftheboardandtheotherplayermoveshisqueenacrossthemiddle,thendisasterstrikesimmediately.Itdoesnotmatterwhethertheknightorqueenaremoved“rst.Howwouldtworationalactorsplaythisgame?Onethingwecantellforcertainisthatitwillneverendindisasterbecausethisoutcomeisalwaysundercontroloftheplayersandtheybothhaveincentivestoavoidit.Thedisasteroutcomecanonlyoccurifsomeplayerdeliberatelymakesamovethatendsthegameaccordingtothenewrule.Sincedisasteristheworstpossibleoutcome,norationalplayerwouldevermakethismove. Inthemodi“edversionofthemodi“edchessgame,however,thiscertaintyisgone.Whatsmoreinteresting,playersareabletothreateneachotherwithadisasterthatwouldhurtboth.Thiswasnotapossibilityintheoriginalmodi“-cationbecauseoncesomeonecommits,theothercannotpressurehimtoretreatbythreateningtomovehischesspieceacrosstoo.Thecertaintyofdisasteren-suresthatnosuchthreatcanbecredible.Inthisversion,ontheotherhand,suchthreatscanbemadeandprobablywillbemade.Youcanapplythetechniqueofconstrainingyourownchoicestothisenvi-ronmentaswell.Forexample,supposeyouhavemovedyourqueenacrossandIwanttocompelyoutomoveitback.However,youaremuchmoreresolvedthanIamandwebothknowit.IfIcanbringmyselftoruntheriskofdisasteratleasttwice,however,Icanwinnevertheless:Imovemyknightacross,therebyplacingusbothinjeopardy.However,sinceIknowthatinthewarofnervesyouwillprobablywin,Ithenmoveanotherpiecesuchthatitblockstheknightswayback.NowIcannotretreatevenifIwantedtoanditisuptoyoutodosome-thingtorelievetherisk.IfIcancommitmyselftocontinuetoruntherisksandmakecleartoyouthatyouaretheonlyonewhocandiusethesituation,youwouldhavenochoicebutbackdownandretreat.Thestrategyoftakingyouropponenttothebrinkofshareddisasterandcom-pellinghimtoturnback“rstisbrinkmanship.SchellingcallsitmanipulatingthesharedriskofwarŽanditreallyinvolvesthedeliberatecreationofriskthatcanonlyberelievedwhentheopponenttakesanactionthatsuitsyourpur-poses.Brinkmanshipisawarofnerves,itisaboutrisk-acceptanceandfearmorethanitisaboutcoolrationalcalculations.Whydontwejustthreatenwithsomethingcertain?WhysimplyŽcreateathatsomethinghappen?Threateningwithtoobigastickcanbeaproblembecauseitmaylackcredibility.Forexample,considertheoriginalmodi“cationofchess.SupposeyoumoveyourqueenacrossandIverballytellyouthatunlessyouretreatIwillmovemyknightandwebothendupwiththedisastrousWehavealreadyseenthatitdoesnotmatterwhetherthisoutcomehurtsyoumorethanithurtsme.Aslongasithurtsmesuciently(anditdoesbecauseaccordingtotherulesitisevenworsethanaloss),mythreatwillnotbecredible.YouobviouslycannotavertthedisasterImakethe“nalmove.Iknowit.YouknowthatIknowit.AndIknowthatyouknowthatIknowit.Wealsobothknowthatitisuptometomakethefatallastmove.YoucanjustsitsmuglyandsmileatmewhileIrailagainsttherulesbeingstackedinyourfavor,theworldbeingcoldandheartless,andnobodycaringaboutmypredicament.Noneofthatwouldhelp,ofcourse.Youwinandwebothknowit.Asimilarproblemoccurswiththreateningmassiveretaliationinresponsetoconventionalmilitaryinfractions.Thestickistoobigandtoodangeroustobebelievable.EvenwhentheUnitedStateshad“rst-strikecapabilitymanywonderedifthisnationcouldusethenukesforathirdtimewithimpunityandwithtotaldisregardoftheextentofthethreattheyaresupposedtodiuse.Say ponentstandstoloseeverything,hewill“ghtbackashardashecan,whichisnotwhatwewant.Weonlywantthemtobackdown.Supposethatinsteadofinitiatinganuclearwar,whetherdeliberatelyorbyaccident,wetargetSovietcitiesbutonlydestroyone.Wethentellthemthatunlesstheyretreatwewilldestroyanother.Iftheydontretreat,wedestroyasecondcity.Andsoonandsoforth,graduallyturningthepressureup,butal-wayslettingthembackdown.Thereasonsuchastrategymightworkisbecausedespiteofthepain,theSovietsareleftsomethingtheycarefor:theirothercities.Itisthethreattodestroythesecities,notthepainofhavingalreadylostsome,thatmightcompelthemtobackdown.Thisstrategygraduallyimposescostsontheopponentbut,moreimportantly,itthreatenstoimposemorecostsinthefuture.Aplayerwouldbeunabletothreatenwithmorecostsifitdestroyseverythinghisopponentvaluesinonefellswoop.Athreatthatleavesquiteabittotheadversaryisalotmorecred-iblethanamassivemurderousone.Infact,partofthecredibilityproblemwiththemassivethreatisgeneratedbytheconsequencesofnuclearwar.Ifwethreatenwithamassivenuclearstrike,thentheSoviets,withnothingtolose,haveincentivestostrikebackandimposeasgreatcostsonusaspossible.Withalimitedstrategy,ontheotherhand,theymaybeinducednoteventoretaliatebecausetheyareafraidthatiftheydo,theywouldloseevenmore.Ifyouthinkthatthisiscoldandheartless,youareright.However,RobertMc-Namara,theU.S.SecretaryofDefenseduringtheKennedyandJohnsonadmin-istrationsmadeaspeechin1962inwhichheproposedthisverystrategy,theso-calledNo-CitiesDoctrineŽ.TheRussianswereveryquicktodenounceitbyclaimingthatnolimitedoptionexistedinanuclearwar.Oncethemissilesstart”yingallbetsareo.TheSovietsquitecorrectlyperceivedhowsuchastrategywoulddenythembargainingpower.Theyhadalotofimprecisemissileswithwhichtheycanthreatenmassivestrikesbutnotcarefullimitedretaliationinreturn.Sotheydidnotlikeit.Theessenceofthisapproachisverysimilartotheoneusedbythethreatthatleavessomethingtochanceinthatitbreaksthelargeinherentlyincrediblethreatintoaseriesofsmaller,credibleones.Thestrategyoflimitedretaliationalsoincreasesthecredibilityofthethreatoffuturedestruction.Byexercisingthelimitedoption,aplayercandemonstratethatitsresolveisgreaterthanthatofitsadversary,justlikewiththethreatthatleavessomethingtochance,whereitdidsobyrevealingitswillingnesstorunrisksofdisaster.3.3TheGenerationofRiskObviously,theseareverydangeroustactics;theywouldnotworkunlesstheyweredangerousbecauseitisthegenerationofriskthatmakesthempotentially.Howisthatriskgenerated?Rationalopponentswouldnevercrossthebrinkofdisasterwillingly.How-ever,evenrationalopponentsmaydosounwittingly,unintentionally,andbyaccidentorsheerbadluck.Theessentialideahereistoblurthebrink.Ifyou resolvebysendingEgyptiantroopsintotheSinai(aftertheSovietsliedtohimthatIsraelwasmassingtroopsontheSyrianborder).HewasinnopositiontoattackIsraelwhile“ghtinginYemen(whereEgyptwasbackingrebelsagainstroyalistssupportedbySaudiArabia),andconsequentlyhetriedtoensurethatIsraelwouldnottakehisactionasapreparationforwar.Tothisend,hesentthetroopsopenlyhopingthatthiswouldservethedualpurposeofdeterringaggressionagainstSyriawithoutprovokingapreemptivestrikeagainstEgypt.However,eventstookalifeoftheirownasthecountriesbeganslidingdowntheprecipicetodisaster.EmboldenedbytheoutpourofpublicsupportforhismoveintotheSinai,NasserdecidedtoupthestakesanddemandedthewithdrawalofUNEFforces.TheU.N.SecretaryGeneralUThantcapitulatedwithoutsomuchasaskingtheGeneralAssemblytoconsiderthematteraspertheoriginalagreement.TheU.N.forcewaswithdrawneliminatingthelastshieldIsraelhadagainstEgypt.Predictably,theanti-Israelivoicesescalatedtheirrhetoric:nowthattheU.N.wasnotprotectingtheZionistentity,Žthetimehadcometowipeitoutinwar.Caughtinthemomentumofhissuccess,NasserblockadedtheStraitsofTiranagainonMay22,cuttingoallIsraelishippingandstoppingthecovertsupplyofIranianoil.Thismarkedapointofnoreturninthecrisis.IsraelhadalwaysmaintainedthatclosureofthestraitswasacasusbelliagainstwhichIsraelwasfreetore-spondwithforceinself-defense.Nasserwasunpreparedforwar,andhenceoneisdrawntotheconclusionthathemusthavehopedforsomesortofdiplomaticresolutionofthecrisis,perhapsaninterventionbythesuperpowersthatwouldallowhimtoescapewithhisreputationintact.Theclosureofthestraitswasnotdesignedtoprovokewar,butwasanactofrisk-taking,inwhichNassermayhaveunderestimatedthenervousnessoftheIsraelis.AssoonasNassergavetheappearanceforpreparingforamilitarysolutionoftheZionistproblem,theArableadersralliedaroundEgypt.TheArabforcesbeganmobilizing,reachingoveraquarterofamilliontroopswith2,000tanksand700aircraft.Israelhadgoneonalertthreeweekspreviouslyandwasreelingundertheintensepressure.YitzhakRabin(ChiefofSta,CommanderoftheIsraeliDefenseForces[IDF])sueredanervousbreakdownthatputhimoutofcommissionforawhile.Desperately,theIsraelistriedtogetPresidentJohnsontointervenesomehowandcompelNassertoopenthestraits.TheAmericanspreferrednegotiationsandwarnedIsraelthatifitdecidedtopreemptitwouldbealone.Negotiationswentnowhereandtherewasnotimeforpatience.TheSovietsweresupplyingtheArabswithmassiveamountsofarms.Onthe30thKingHus-seinsuddenly”ewtoCairoandJordansignedadefensepactwithEgypt.ThechoirclamoringforIsraelsdestructionreachedacrescendowithIraqjoiningit.TheEgyptian,Syrian,andJordanianarmiesswelledwithcontributionsfromKuwait,SaudiArabia,Iraq,andevendistantAlgeria.TheIsraelispanickedandpressedAmericaoncemoretostepinanddiusethecrisisor,failingthat,let

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