So I still have some troubles with yesterday's class.
Did we ever really answer Douglas' question as to how we evaluate current situation? It seems to me you can't ever really guess which model a country will follow. We know countries can change their grand strategies and ways of thinking so looking at the past can only really tell you what was done in the past. Sure if a country has stayed the course and has been 100% consistent it could help us- but does that happen?
As for rational choice, I think it's interesting to think of in terms of the American presidency. If Bush were up for re-election would we still be in Iraq letting things progress as they are? It seems to me a president might be more likely to pay attention to what's rationally right for the country he represents when he could stay in the White House for 4 more years. When you are not facing the campaign trail, perhaps you start to think more in terms of you and your best interests.