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You ask and they respond, here is a question for the Call of Duty:® Black Ops 2 developers that we received on our @CallofDuty Twitter!
tayyib_chaos: @CallofDuty Can you change the storyline by the choices you make in #BlackOps2?
Treyarch: Yes, there will be choice events in the campaign that will effect the story. One way we are doing this is through Strike Force levels, which are new to Call of Duty and introduce, non-linear/sandbox-style gameplay to the single-player storyline for the first time. This is how they work – at several points, the head of special forces will address you and let you know that a conflict has arisen (a "proxy war," happening parallel to the main storyline) and that you need to handle it. You'll choose your mission and be inserted into the action. Once you're in, you'll be in a sandbox map and be required to achieve several objectives. While playing, players will be able to take control of the battle like never before, being able to assume control of any member or robot/drone from their squad – even zooming out and playing in an Overwatch mode. You can play with all the toys — you can play however you like – whatever you feel you need to do to advance the action. Whichever point of view you assume, you are able to set waypoints, issue commands – do whatever you need to do — to succeed at the level. And there lies the implication to the level: you will either succeed or fail a mission (a first for Call of Duty). Either way, the game and the story will continue on and the cumulative impact of your Strike Force accomplishments will ultimately shape the geo-political story arc of your single-player experience.