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노벨 경제학상 수상자인 셸링도 미국에게 북한의 안보우려를 진지하게 받아들일 것을 요구하고 있군요. 미국이 북한에 안보위협을 해소시키는 것이 모두에게 이익이 된다는 지극히 당연한 주장이 안보의 게임이론의 권위자에 의해 다시 한 번 확인된 셈입니다.

그런데 안보 문제, 특히 명예를 죽음보다 소중히 생각하는 체제의 경우 전쟁의 문제를 단순한 '이익과 손해'의 관념을 가지고 게임논리적으로 계산하는 것은 무척 위험한 일이 아닐 수 없습니다.

실제로 셸링은 게임이론의 대가로 평가받지만, 그는 베트남 전쟁에서 미국의 북베트남 폭격을 게임이론적으로 '쉽게' 뒷받침한 중대한 오점이 있습니다. 그에 관한 자세한 기사는 뒷부분에 실었습니다.

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노벨상 셸링 "美, 北과 불가침조약 체결해야"

WSJ인터뷰 "테러 보단 온난화가 더 위협"

    (뉴욕=연합뉴스) 이래운 특파원 = 게임이론 분석으로 올해 노벨 경제학상을  수상한 토머스 셸링 교수는 7일(현지시간) 북한 핵문제를 해결하기 위해 미국은  북한과 불가침 조약을 체결해야 한다고 말했다.

    셸링 교수는 이날 월스트리트 저널과 인터뷰에서 "북한과 이란은 핵무기가 전쟁 억지력이 될 것으로 여기고 있으며, 그 무기를 사용하는 것은 원치 않는 것 같다"면서 이같이 말했다.

    셸링 교수는 특히 "북한이 만약 암시장에서 핵무기를 10억 달러에 팔고  싶어한다면 어느 누구도 더 높은 가격을 제시할 수 없도록 미국은 50억  달러를  제시해야 한다"고 역설했다.

    국제적 이슈인 '안보'와 '군비 경쟁'을 해석하는데 게임이론을  적용해온  셸링 교수는 우선 북한과 이란이 핵무기 개발을 시도하는 것은 러시아나  미국의  군사적 개입을 막기위한 것이며, 핵전쟁을 일으키려는 의도는 없는 것으로 분석했다.

    그는 이어 "세계 제2차대전 당시 독일이 절실히 필요로 하는  많은  천연자원이 있었다"고 전제, "미국은 그것들을 원해서가 아니라 그것들이 독일에  가지  않도록 천연자원들을 사들였다"면서 이를 핵암시장에도 적용해야 한다고 주장했다.

    셸링 교수는 "핵물질이나 실제 핵무기를 암거래하는 시장이 나타난다면  미국이 그 암시장에 들어가 예방적 구매를 하는 감각과 능력이 있을 것으로 생각한다"고 거듭 강조했다.

    `부시 행정부가 핵위협에 어떻게 대처하고 있느냐'는 질문에 셸링 교수는 "부시 행정부가 잘못 대처해서 인지, 아니면 원래 불가능한 임무여서 인지는 몰라도  북한이나 이란 핵문제는 성공적이지 못했다"면서 "특히 북한에 대해서는 실용적이지  못한 것 같다"고 비판했다.

    그러면서 그는 "북한에 대해서는 침공하지 않는다는 확신을 심어주어야 한다"면서 "북한이 불가침 조약을 진지하게 받아들인다면 핵무기를 개발할 필요를 덜  느끼게 될 것"이라고 설명했다.

    셸링 교수는 이밖에 테러리즘은 큰 위협이 아니지만 지구 온난화는  큰  위협이 될 수 있다며 지구 온난화에 대한 적극적인 대처를 주문했다.

    lrw@yna.co.kr
(끝) <저작권자(c)연합뉴스. 무단전재-재배포금지.> 2005/11/08 01:02 송고

----------------------------------------
All Pain, No Gain
Nobel laureate Thomas Schelling's little-known role in the Vietnam War.
By Fred Kaplan
Posted Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2005, at 1:43 PM ET



His "game theory" didn't work so well in the real world

Thomas C. Schelling won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences this week. Today's papers note his ingenious applications of "game theory" to labor negotiations, business transactions, and arms-control agreements. But what they don't note—what is little-known in general—is the crucial role he played in formulating the strategies of "controlled escalation" and "punitive bombing" that plunged our country into the war in Vietnam.

This dark side of Tom Schelling is also the dark side of social science—the brash assumption that neat theories not only reflect the real world but can change it as well, and in ways that can be precisely measured. And it's a legacy that can be detected all too clearly in our current imbroglio in Iraq.

Schelling made his mark in 1960 with a book called The Strategy of Conflict, in which he applied principles of bargaining to the practice of war. (He had been an international trade negotiator in the 1940s, and while he wrote his book he was a strategist at the RAND Corp., the Air Force think tank where nearly all the defense intellectuals cut their teeth in those halcyon days.)



He saw war as essentially a violent form of bargaining. There were, he wrote, "enlightening similarities between, say, maneuvering in limited war and jockeying in a traffic jam, deterring the Russians and deterring one's own children … the modern balance of terror and the ancient institution of hostages."

The key dilemma among Cold Warriors of the day was the emerging nuclear parity between the United States and the Soviet Union. President Dwight Eisenhower was relying on a policy of "massive retaliation"—if the Soviets invaded Western Europe, we would pummel their country with nuclear weapons. But if the Soviets also had nukes, this policy would no longer be credible, because they could strike back against our country, too. So, what to do?

Schelling's answer was to retaliate "in a punitive sense" by "putting pressure on the Russians" through "limited or graduated reprisals," inflicting "civilian pain and the threat of more"—in short by sending signals with force, upping the ante in the bargaining round, intimidating them into backing down.

In his next book, Arms and Influence, published in 1966 but conceived a few years earlier, he went further. "The power to hurt," he wrote, "can be counted among the most impressive attributes of military power. … To inflict suffering gains nothing and saves nothing directly; it can only make people behave to avoid it. … War is always a bargaining process," and one must wage it in a way to maximize "the bargaining power that comes from the capacity to hurt," to cause "sheer pain and damage," because they are "the primary instruments of coercive warfare."

When, in the early months of 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara were looking for ways to step up military action against North Vietnam, they adopted Schelling's concept.

The link was direct. McNamara's closest adviser was an assistant secretary of defense named John McNaughton, who had been friends with Schelling since their days administering the Marshall Plan in Paris. They were both teaching at Harvard when Schelling got a call to come work at the Pentagon; he didn't want the job, but he recommended McNaughton. His friend objected that he didn't know anything about arms and strategy, but Schelling told him that it was easy, that he would teach him everything. And he did.

Schelling's lessons can be seen clearly in the classified memorandums reproduced in The Pentagon Papers, the top-secret history of the Vietnam War that Daniel Ellsberg leaked to the New York Times.

On May 22, 1964, National Security Adviser McGeorge Bundy sent a memo to President Johnson. "An integrated political-military plan for graduated action against North Vietnam is being prepared under John McNaughton at Defense," he wrote. "The theory of this plan is that we should strike to hurt but not to destroy, and strike for the purpose of changing the North Vietnamese decision on intervention in the south." Two days later, Bundy sent a follow-on note recommending that the United States "use selected and carefully graduated military force against North Vietnam," that troops be deployed "on a very large scale, from the beginning, so as to maximize their deterrent impact and their menace. A pound of threat is worth an ounce of action—as long as we are not bluffing."

In an interview 25 years ago for a book that I was writing about the nuclear strategists, Schelling told me what happened next. McNaughton came to see him. He outlined the administration's interest in escalating the conflict in order to intimidate the North Vietnamese. Air power seemed the logical instrument, but what sort of bombing campaign did Schelling think would best ensure that the North would pick up on the signals and respond accordingly? More broadly, what should the United States want the North to do or stop doing; how would bombing convince them to obey; how would we know that they had obeyed; and how could we ensure that they wouldn't simply resume after the bombing had ceased?

Schelling and McNaughton pondered the problem for more than an hour. In the end, they failed to come up with a single plausible answer to these most basic questions. So assured when writing about sending signals with force and inflicting pain to make an opponent behave, Tom Schelling, when faced with a real-life war, was stumped.

He did leave McNaughton with one piece of advice: Whatever kind of bombing campaign you end up launching, it shouldn't last more than three weeks. It will either succeed by then—or it will never succeed.

The bombing campaign—called Operation Rolling Thunder—commenced on March 2, 1965. It didn't alter the behavior of the North Vietnamese or Viet Cong in the slightest. Either they didn't read the signals—or the signals had no effect.

On March 24, almost three weeks to the day after Rolling Thunder began, McNaughton—again following Schelling's lesson—sent the first of several pessimistic memos to McNamara: "The situation in Vietnam is bad and deteriorating." Our aim at this point, he wrote, should be merely to "avoid a humiliating U.S. defeat." Keep up the pressure to affect the North's "will" and to provide the U.S. with "a bargaining counter" so that we "emerge as a 'good doctor.' We must have kept promises, been tough, taken risks, gotten bloodied and hurt the enemy very badly." But victory was not in the cards, and we should seek a way out.

The bombing escalated. When that didn't work, more troops were sent in, a half-million at their peak. The war continued for another decade, killing 50,000 Americans and untold numbers of Vietnamese. McNamara grew increasingly disillusioned but kept up the pretense of a light at the end of the tunnel. In the spring of 1967, John McNaughton died in a plane crash.* In November of that year, McNamara, exhausted and in despair, resigned—or he was fired, it's never been clear which—and went to wring his bloodied hands in the World Bank's fountains.

Tom Schelling didn't write much about war after that. He'd learned the limitations of his craft. If Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz had studied history better, they, too, might have appreciated those limits before chasing their delusional dreams into the wilds of Mesopotamia.

Correction, Oct. 12, 2005: John McNaughton died in a plane crash, not a helicopter crash as this article originally and incorrectly stated.


Fred Kaplan is Slate's "War Stories" columnist and the author of The Wizards of Armageddon.


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