This chapter offers an analysis of the decision code of Khaled Mashal, the former leader of the Hamas organization. Using the Applied Decision Analysis (ADA) method, it…
This chapter offers an analysis of the decision code of Khaled Mashal, the former leader of the Hamas organization. Using the Applied Decision Analysis (ADA) method, it examines five decisions made by Mashal in 2011–2017. The analysis suggests that Mashal tends to use mainly the poliheuristic decision rule in these decisions, and considers the political-organizational dimension of Hamas as non-compensatory. Thus, Mashal made these decisions by first eliminating any alternative which risked his organization’s political status, and only then he rationally chose the alternative with the greatest expected utility from the remaining ones.
Understanding how leaders make foreign policy and national security decisions is of paramount importance for both the policy community and academia. It is our assertion that decisions in these domains can be explained best by tracing the cognitive process leaders go through in formulating and arriving at their decisions, using the applied decision analysis (ADA) method.
Consequently, this chapter introduces readers to Applied Decision Analysis (also see Mintz, 2005; Mintz & DeRouen, 2010), which is utilized throughout the chapters comprising this volume. We describe the methodological and theoretical implications of the research findings presented in this edited volume. Specifically, the range of leaders analyzed in this volume using ADA (namely, Vladimir Putin, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Khaled Mashal, Mao Zedong, and Saddam Hussein) substantiates this method’s capacity to provide robust analysis of decisions made by leaders from diverse nations and cultures. We conclude this introduction by providing a brief summary of the chapters that are included in this volume.
This volume is the second of two volumes analyzing decision-making, policy, and strategy of 12 prominent political leaders from the East and West through the lens of ADA. The chapters comprising both volumes seek to uncover how political leaders make decisions: their decision calculus and the motives and factors affecting their crafting of foreign as well as national security policies. The concluding chapter outlines the empirical and analytic contributions of ADA and poliheuristic theory to analysis that should be undertaken in national security and foreign policy affairs. Specifically, the chapter underscores ADA’s policy relevance and ramifications vis-à-vis intelligence analysis, international security analysis, as well as cross-cultural decision-making studies of rivals and allies.