Browsing All Posts published on »April, 2011«

Henry Kissinger as a guide to the Arab Spring

April 23, 2011


It won’t surprise readers to learn I’m a fan of Henry Kissinger. Two books which shaped my early thinking on foreign policy were Diplomacy and A World Restored, the latter a textbook in returning order and legitimacy to regions destabilised by revolution. On Wednesday, Kissinger appeared with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Charlie Rose […]

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 […]

The limitations of a nudge-nudge, wink-wink war

April 11, 2011


My regular sparring-partner on Libya, Daniel Korski, has written today about the frustration felt by some over NATO’s handling of the campaign. They detained a ship carrying weapons to Misrata last week, and the rebels have criticised the organisation for being ‘bureaucratic and backward-leaning’ when it comes to the air campaign. Daniel concludes, ‘it is […]

Mistaking Libya for the world

April 6, 2011


There is nothing like an international crisis to make pundits think they are foreign policy experts, as I wrote last month; and a common problem with their “take” is that they believe the crisis tells us something troubling about the future. When Russia invaded Georgia in 2008, the media predicted a new Cold War. I […]

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 […]

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

April 1, 2011


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 […]