Coalitions form and dissolve overnight between the strangest of bedfellows. Dire enemies momentarily join forces to battle someone else, then resume their old fight as if nothing had happened. The only way to get a decision to stand is to "shoot the losers" - line up everyone who opposes the decision and shoot them down. Otherwise, they begin to undermine the decision before the ink is dry on the paper. Quite often, the real debate begins only after a major decision has been made. Time and again, I have listened to senior officials express total frustration when issues they thought were settled suddenly reappeared.
- Colonel James Burton describing decision making in the Pentagon