Browsing All Posts filed under »Strategy«

From the Archives: Civilization III

June 12, 2012


Daniel Knowles of the Telegraph wrote a great piece on the video game Civilization today, which I used to play constantly before I went to university. The following is an account I wrote of a scenario I played in August 2007 (it was the day before I received my A Level results, so I had […]

Alison Vandenburgh: The Walsh Exchange

February 23, 2012


This is a guest post by Ms. Alison Vandenburgh of Georgetown University, which explains to readers what I think sounds like a great project there. Alison got in touch with me recently about promoting the Walsh Exchange conference on the blog, and I thought this was the best way to do it. When thinking about […]

Why Britain is not isolated in Europe

December 13, 2011


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 […]

Libya: A clarification

August 18, 2011


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, […]

Younes, smugness and the future of Libya

August 2, 2011


I have been smug about Libya for a while now. This afternoon, at lunch, a friend of mine complained that I seem to use Twitter simply to express smug satisfaction about this ill-considered war. “Facebook, too,” I added, with a smirk. The killing of General Abdel Younes, a senior rebel commander, and the retributions going […]

Passionately moderate-ism

June 24, 2011


President Obama announced the withdrawal of ten thousand troops from Afghanistan, plus twice that number out by next summer, in a short statement he made Wednesday night at the White House. Others have written about the announcement and discussed the issues surrounding it much better than I could hope to, but there was a section […]

Realism: to be sandwiched between craziness and naivety

June 21, 2011


Late this morning I tweeted sardonically, ‘If I had a pound for every pound I had for each day a government minister said Gaddafi is on his way out…’ The next thing I know, I’m being asked to speak on the BBC World Service about the surprising durability of the regime three months after our […]

Where is the Special Relationship going?

May 24, 2011


President Obama begins his state visit to the United Kingdom today, so, understandably, there has been a lot of focus on the Special Relationship; much of it typically pessimistic. I haven’t helped with my latest piece for Egremont criticising the new US-UK National Security Board (NSB). The board is supposed to keep officials on each […]

Israel and its inability to think strategically (still)

May 23, 2011


Last summer, when perennial concern about Iran’s nuclear programme grew hysterical, Ron Tira, a noted Israeli strategic thinker, wrote that the importance of an attack on the country was not the operation itself but manipulating international reaction. ‘It is necessary to examine Israel’s response to different events, for example, the Turkish flotilla to the Gaza […]

The onward march of T-BAGging

May 22, 2011


Last November, I wrote it was time for the ‘blogification’ of our academic giants, (T-BAG for short), as punditry was stifling foreign policy debate. We had to persuade the great and the good to come out of their academic obscurity and engage in new media, however ghastly it is, so that we may cast down […]

Afghanistan, David Cameron and British grand strategy

May 17, 2011


Yesterday, the Daily Telegraph reported that David Cameron has told the military to draw up plans for an early exit from Afghanistan. American commanders are alarmed by this and they are putting pressure on their British counterparts, as it might hasten an early US withdrawal. The story also ties into concerns the United States supposedly […]

Failed states and their threat to our country

April 21, 2011


Why does David Cameron support the war in Afghanistan? This is the title of a speech I’m giving soon, in which I examine his stated reasons for backing our involvement and explore possible ones. “Our forces are in Afghanistan to prevent Afghan territory from again being used by al-Qaeda as a base from which to […]

War as emotional catharsis by other means

April 4, 2011


Anne-Marie Slaughter, who wasn’t exactly George Kennan as Director of Policy Planning at the State Department, asked opponents of the Libyan intervention to please read this blog post. Its author, a student at George Washington University, explained why he has decided to support the intervention after first opposing it. His change of heart was triggered […]