Browsing All Posts filed under »France«

From the Archives: The New Year’s War in Gaza

November 16, 2012

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With it kicking off in Gaza again, I thought I’d post an unpublished article I wrote in late 2009 about what I called the New Year’s War in Gaza. Some of the observations are understandably dated, but I think the piece is still relevant. At eleven o’clock Saturday morning, on December 27th 2008, the New […]

Sykes-Picot is not to blame for Syria

August 16, 2012

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For many in the Arab world, the Sykes-Picot Agreement is what the Yalta conference was for many conservatives in the United States during the Cold War. It is a betrayal of a people seeking freedom, a damning indictment of Great Power politics, and the source of all the problems in the Middle East. As with […]

Why Britain is not isolated in Europe

December 13, 2011

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Since the European Summit on Friday, when David Cameron blocked an EU-wide treaty, many in the media have talked a lot of balls about the United Kingdom and “isolation”. Those who have criticised the Prime Minister, (who, funnily enough, have mostly been Europhiles), have bemoaned our lack of “influence” in Europe. If one follows the […]

David Cameron and the European crisis: some hard truths

December 9, 2011

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I woke up this morning to discover history had been made, or so I was told. Europe and the United Kingdom have parted ways. At a summit in Brussels this morning, David Cameron had used our veto for the first time to stop a ruinous financial transaction tax, but he has also isolated the country […]

What’s in the name of a fascistic, oppressive, unjust foreign policy…?

September 19, 2011

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Last week, when Prime Minister Erdogan of Turkey toured the Middle East, aligning himself with the Arab Street despite his dodgy credentials to do so, a Turkish analyst on Twitter rejected that this was ‘neo-Ottomanism’ on his country’s part. If the region had anything to worry about, it was the neo-colonialism of the Western powers, […]

Libya: A clarification

August 18, 2011

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Since February, when the drumbeat for war with Colonel Gaddafi began, and I made an awful racket in response, I have been bugged by someone called Kellie Strøm. He has supported the intervention from the beginning and regularly makes obtuse comments about my opposition. Yesterday, Strøm pointed out my apparently uncertain position. On 17th March, […]

Ellis of Benghazi!

August 16, 2011

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This letter, which has been classified for fifty years, sheds a fascinating light on British foreign policy in the early 21st Century and the career of Lord Litherland (more popularly known as “Ellis of Benghazi”…) 16th August, 2011 To the Rt. Hon. William Hague MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs My dear, […]

Three books

May 11, 2011

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Dan Drezner, the commentator realists go to now Stephen Walt is crazy, posed a tough challenge to foreign policy bloggers a couple of weeks ago. We had to choose three books which would help our politicians better understand international relations, but which wouldn’t require a graduate course to understand. Here are my picks: Alfred Duff […]

Gaddafi, ‘threat’ and the art of seeing behind hills

April 1, 2011

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I have kept quiet about Libya since the intervention began, as I felt it’d be better to wait for things to go pear-shaped and then sing the ‘I told you so!’ song. Facebook has been handy for venting my frustration, however, and last night I asked if there was any proof to the claim that […]

Libya, The Spectator and the limits of punditry

March 13, 2011

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There is nothing like an international crisis to make pundits think they are foreign policy experts; to the actual experts, each sloppy op-ed is like someone pushing to the floor a trolley full of brass instruments. As the uprising in Libya has turned to armed rebellion, I have had to cover my ears to avoid […]

What to do in Libya?

March 10, 2011

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The clamour for a no-fly zone over Libya is deafening; and so frightening is the sound that politicians may soon lose their heads and concede to creating one. I keep asking myself: what would the no-fly zone be for? James Forsyth, political editor of The Spectator magazine, seems to think it’d help the rebels defeat […]

Forget Garibaldi and Palmerston; listen to Lord Salisbury

March 2, 2011

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David Cameron gave a statement on the Libyan crisis Monday, telling MPs he will not tolerate the violence and that he had asked the Chief of the Defence Staff to look into creating a no-fly zone. The American Weekly Standard described him as ‘Churchillian’, which should’ve been a warning to the Prime Minister that perhaps […]

Crispin Burke and Courtney Messerschmidt: Shi Lang!

January 19, 2011

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The rise of China and its implication on security in East Asia is conspicuously missing from the blog, but this guest post by Crispin Burke and Courtney Messerschmidt begins to correct this. It puts concerns about Chinese military technology into a more critical perspective, especially its new aircraft carrier. Crispin is a US Army captain […]