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War on Terrorism - Ethics Project

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War on Terrorism Case Study Analysis
GM530 Managerial Decision Making
Week6 Assignment
Keller Graduate School of Management
Ravi Murugan
February 14 2011
Prof. Marc Friedman

Discuss the different decision personalities/styles advising Bush.
Bush’s war cabinet consisted of a select group of senior administration officials. They were George Bush, Richard Cheney, Andrew Card, Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, George Tenet, Robert Mueller, Donald Rumsfeld, John Ashcroft, Henry Shelton, Paul O’Neill, Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Armitage who held secret meetings for weeks and had experience in foreign affairs. Five of these people planned and executed the Persian Gulf War with bush’s father and so had his trust (Cheney, Rice, Powell, Wolfowitz and Armitage). For our personalities discussion I am selecting just the key persons who were advising or feeding input on different matters.

i) George W. Bush: He prefers to lead by setting a broad direction and delegating responsibilities to trusted subordinates and leans heavily on his advisors. He is careful in his selection and chooses loyal people who are given goals and left to work on it. His lack of foreign policy experience contributed to his heavy reliance on his counsel and advisors. He knew how to delegate authority and hold people accountable for their responsibilities and authority. He listened more and then made a decision, which he stands firm to. He is more of not the details oriented person but draw a clear outline, set goals. Also he wanted more information from even the second line officials to understand the problem. All he needed is just walk over and talk one on one or get a briefing from their way of describing a problem instead of going through the memo.

ii) Dick Cheney: He was very experienced after serving as Secretary of Defense, Congress man and White house chief of Staff. This gained Bush’s trust and he always turned to Cheney for advice and his opinion. Cheney shunned the spotlights but he was the “backseat”. He usually gave his advice to the president in private but asked tough questions during meeting. He had a close relationship with Rumsfeld and Powell because of their long work history iii) Colin Powell: He had served four presidents as adviser, military leader, cabinet member and now secretary of state. Bush’s description of him as “a tower of integrity and common sense” best describes his style. Powell finds himself operating across a fault line (attitude). He is a multilateralist as opposed to other advisors who are unilateralists. He is interternationalist while they are America first and often seen as a moderation force in the administration. iv) Condoleezza Rice: She earned a PhD in political science and was a professor. She is described by her colleagues as “soft-spoken” yet “tough, decisive and unafraid of going against the grain” and “ a terrific team player”. She breaks things down to clear, common-sensical ways and a great moderator and facilitator. He relationship with Bu9sh’s father and experience gained her Bush’s trust and she was one of the final people he spoke to before deciding.

v) Donald Rumsfeld: Being secretary of defense, he had his believes that US had to improve its weapons, develop new capabilities because the nation has faced threats during the cold war. He told America wasn’t prepared and had become too hesitant to employ its military might. His place in the war cabinet was indispensible as he was coming to move forward and not backward and had been somewhat right. He had built his experience from working many years as an executive in the public and private sector.

How did Bush use different inputs to reach the decision?
The president went through rigorous screening of the ideas and inputs of his war cabinet before making his decision of going after the attackers. The idea of a CIA team to move up within the northern Alliance of Afghanistan and begin a series of covert operations around the word was his decision. Including the British in its war plans, and that the team was not to over throw Hussein. The major decision was going to war and how to present it to the American people.
In addressing the issue to Congress and the American people and subsequently world at large, the president relied on mainly the input of Rice, Powell and a few advisers. Rumsfeld argued against mentioning Bin Laden’s name but Rice disagreed and he ended up keeping one reference of it. Rice and Powell also supported Hadley’s recommendation and Bush chose to heed to their advice.
After discussions with heads of states of other nations, and his war cabinet, the following were the inputs considered. - Greson penned a powerful line for speech “This is not just act of terrorism. This is an act of war” Bush agreed the characterization but removed that line from the speech. He told Hughes that our mission is reassurance. - But then again in the speech bush made a very strong stand regarding nation’s response to terrorism. Made a bold pronouncement of “We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them”. - Bush also chose to declare his administration’s new policy during that evening’s speech without seeking input from Vice President Cheney or Secretary of State Collin Powell. He did solicit advice from Rice though. - Universal agreed that there had to be a response and an immediate one. - Secondly when Bush decided not to “pound sand with millions of dollars in weapons”, Blair advised him to move quickly to line up international support for a military campaign. - Rumsfeld’s question “do we focus on bin Laden or more broadly?” was a good one. Rumsfeld wanted the focus to be on terrorism at large but Powell and Cheney’s opinion made the President consider focusing on bin laden first. - The war of terrorism was not only of military actions as the NSC under Adviser Stephen Hadley proposed. It advocated a comprehensive campaign including diplomatic, financial, investigative and humanitarian efforts. The goal was to eradicate threats to the United States, which the president agreed and also added that the country has an obligation to defend its allies as well. - The scope of the campaign was next and Powell, Cheney and bush thought they should start with Al Qaeda and the Afghanistan Taliban regime. Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz idea to go to Iraq and remove Hussein was not accepted as Powell and Shelton expressed opposition against this. - President conferred with Cheney and Rice in two separate meetings. - Cheney and Bush discussed the issues that had been debated by the War Cabinet. - Later Bush asked Rice to join him in his cabin at Camp David. Bush described how to proceed in the war effort where Rice also gave some additional insights and comments on Bush’s plan of action.

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