Decisional Dilemma: Structure, Function, and the NSC Staff   [open pdf - 5MB]

From the thesis abstract: "The Iran-Contra Affair, and the subsequent investigations, threw blinding light on the National Security Council [NSC] Staff, an organization that has grown dramatically in bureaucratic power since its inception 40 years ago. Much of the criticism of the Staff, however, has been directed at the personalities involved in this singularly unsuccessful operation and has neglected its more important implications for the national security system as a whole. In reality, this unfortunate episode, like other problems that have surfaced from time to time, had its roots in a mismatch between the national security structure and the essential functions that must be performed by the NSC Staff. These functions include: 1) Administration, 2) Coordination, 3) Supervision, 4) Adjudication, 5) Crisis Management, 6) Policy Formulation, and 7) Policy Advocacy. As can be demonstrated throughout the history of the NSC Staff, the extent to which the national security structure supports these functions will determine the degree of systemic success enjoyed by the administration in national security affairs. For that reason, the structure must command higher visibility and greater attention o the part of the president."

Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC): http://www.dtic.mil/
Media Type:
Help with citations