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Definition In military operations, the term ‘Decision’ refers to a determination made by a commander or leader after considering all relevant information and possible courses of action. It outlines a plan for how to proceed in achieving an objective or dealing with a situation. A decision involves selecting a particular course of action from a […]


In military operations, the term ‘Decision’ refers to a determination made by a commander or leader after considering all relevant information and possible courses of action. It outlines a plan for how to proceed in achieving an objective or dealing with a situation. A decision involves selecting a particular course of action from a range of possible options.

Key Takeaways

  1. The military term ‘Decision’ refers to the act of choosing a particular course of action among several alternatives. It is a critical step in military operations and involves extensive analytical and cognitive processes.
  2. A ‘Decision’ in military operations can greatly influence the outcome of a mission or conflict. It could lead to victory or defeat, depending on the situational understanding, accuracy of intelligence and timing.
  3. ‘Decision’ in military context is not always made instantly. It involves deliberate planning, continuous assessment of the situation, and revisiting previously made decisions. Therefore, it is not just about making decisions, but also about managing them throughout the military operations.


The military operations term: Decision is of critical importance as it directly impacts the success or failure of a mission or operation. ‘Decision’ in military terms refers to the superior’s calculated judgement or choice made after considering all available information and possible outcomes.

Making an effective decision means understanding the scenario, accurately evaluating options, predicting potential repercussions, and taking prompt action. It requires strategic planning, risk assessment, and good judgement.

This process is essential in military operations because it ensures the best course of action is taken to safeguard national security, protect military personnel, achieve mission objectives, and potentially save lives. Consistently making sound decisions can lead to increased operational effectiveness and strategic advantage over adversaries.


In military operations, the term “decision” is paramount as it is a fundamental part of strategic planning and tactical operations, affecting both the onset of a mission and its subsequent developments. Its purpose is to shape an effective course of action that aligns with the operation’s objectives, resources, and constraints.

Military decisions often tackle aspects such as setting particular goals, determining the allocation and maneuver of forces, choosing the appropriate strategies and tactics, and deliberating on the timing and location of attacks or defenses. In the process of a military operation, a decision also serves to anticipate potential scenarios and prepare contingency plans.

It could mean the difference between victory and defeat, life and death, thus these decisions must be both tactical and pragmatic. Military leaders use their experience, critical analysis of intelligence, context understanding, and risk assessment to make informed decisions that could remarkably influence the outcome of a conflict.

Consequently, the decision-making process is not a unilateral action, it usually incorporates insights from different levels of the military hierarchy, presenting a remarkable example of collective intelligence at work.

Examples of Decision

Operation Neptune: This was the code name for the D-Day landings on June 6, 1944, during World War II. The decision to initiate this operation, one of the largest amphibious military assaults in history, was taken after careful consideration of multiple factors such as weather, geographical conditions, available troops, and enemy strength. The decision to proceed with Operation Neptune marked a critical turning point in the war.

Operation Desert Storm: In the 1991 Gulf War, U.S. President George H.W. Bush made the decision to launch Operation Desert Storm to liberate Kuwait after it was invaded by Iraq. This involved a massive air campaign followed by a brief ground invasion. The decision making process involved evaluating the risks, the potential for success, and the likely reactions of allies and enemies.

Operation Neptune Spear: This was the decision by President Obama to launch a mission to capture or kill Osama bin Laden in

This high-stakes decision involved considering intelligence reports, operational capabilities, potential political fallout, and risks to the Navy SEALs tasked with carrying out the mission. Following intense deliberation and review of various scenarios, Obama made the decision to proceed, which led to bin Laden’s demise.

FAQs: Military Operations – Decision

What is the role of decision making in military operations?

Decision making is a crucial component of military operations. It involves assessing situations, considering various options, and making informed choices. These decisions affect the planning, control and execution of military operations, ultimately influencing their success or failure.

What is the Decision Making Process in military?

The Military Decision Making Process (MDMP) is a US Army seven-step process that incorporates detailed planning and clear, concise decision making in military operations. The steps include: receipt of mission, mission analysis, course of action (COA) development, COA analysis, COA comparison, COA approval, and orders production.

Who makes the decisions in military operations?

Decisions in military operations are typically made by high-ranking officers such as Generals, Admirals, or Colonels. The level of the decision maker can depend on the scale and impact of the operation. However, in the heat of battle, sometimes lower-ranking officers or soldiers may have to make quick decisions based on the situation at hand.

What is the concept of command and decision in military operations?

Command and decision in military operations refers to the process by which a commander formulates, adjusts, and issues orders and instructions to subordinate units to achieve the mission. The decision-making process is critical to the success of the command, and proper training and understanding of the command system is crucial for effective decision-making.

How does technology influence the decision-making process in military operations?

Modern technology significantly influences military operations, including the decision-making process. Innovations like artificial intelligence, machine learning and data analytics can provide valuable insights making the decision process more precise and efficient. It allows military leaders to make decisions based on real-time data, improving the speed, accuracy, and effectiveness of their decisions.

Related Military Operation Terms

  • Appeal
  • Ratings Decision
  • Notice of Disagreement (NOD)
  • Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA)
  • Compensation & Pension Exam (C&P)

Sources for More Information

Sure, here are four reliable sources for information on the military operations term ‘Decision’:

  • U.S. Army: This is the official website of the U.S. Army, which provides detailed information about military strategies, tactics, and operations.
  • U.S. Department of Defense: The Department of Defense’s website is a thorough resource for all things military, including operational terms such as ‘decision’.
  • Marine Corps University: The Marine Corps University offers a wealth of information on military operations and strategies, both historic and current.
  • The Joint Chiefs of Staff: The official website of the Joint Chiefs of Staff offers comprehensive information on joint military operations and decision-making processes.

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