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The war in Iraq 2003
Ben Tonra

This chapter analyses the interaction of the four narratives when faced with the short-term policy issue of the 2003 Iraq War. Three very different pictures emerged from the narratives' representation of the Iraqi conflict: one of imperialist aggression, one of illegal conflict and one of regrettable war. This chapter explains that there was no sustained attempt within the Irish debate to initiate and develop a European discourse vis à vis this conflict and discusses the fissure between the Irish and Global discourses over attitudes towards the United Nations.

in Global citizen and European Republic
Ben Tonra

This chapter sums up the key findings of this study on the role of national identity on Irish foreign policy. It explains that each narrative outlined Irish foreign policy history in a different way and discusses how a particular narrative came to dominate the public debate and thereby successfully to marginalise other competing perspectives. The findings of this study reveal that Irish foreign policy has indeed been a reflection of Irish identity, just as contrasting visions of that very identity have contributed to the shape of Irish foreign policy.

in Global citizen and European Republic
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Ireland in a changed Union
Ben Tonra

This chapter examines Irish foreign policy and the EU. This includes discussion of the security debates around the EU’s near neighbourhood and the EU’s changing security outlook, arguing that “hard choices are coming into view” for Ireland. It also assesses the impact of Brexit on Ireland’s international stance, noting the former importance of the UK as a close partner for Ireland within the EU and analysing the subsequent attempts to shore up Ireland’s foreign policy.

in Ireland and the European Union

This book reviews a variety of approaches to the study of the European Union's foreign policy. Much analysis of EU foreign policy contains theoretical assumptions about the nature of the EU and its member states, their inter-relationships, the international system in which they operate and the nature of European integration. The book outlines the possibilities for the use of discourse analysis in the study of European foreign policy. It sets out to explore the research problem using a political-cultural approach and seeks to illuminate the cognitive mind-maps with which policy-makers interpret their political 'realities'. The book provides an overview and analysis of some of the non-realist approaches to international relations and foreign policy, and proposes an analytical framework with which to explore the complex interplay of factors affecting European foreign policy. The book suggests one way of seeking theoretical parsimony without sacrificing the most defining empirical knowledge which has been generated about Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) over the years. It argues that while the sui generis nature of CFSP presents an acute problem for international relations theory, it is less pronounced with regard to traditional integration theory. The book discusses the dimensions of European foreign policy-making with reference to the case of arms export controls. Situated at the interface between European studies and international relations, it outlines how the EU relates to the rest of the world, explaining its effort towards creating a credible, effective and principled foreign, security and defence policy.

Between international relations and European studies
Ben Tonra and Thomas Christiansen

This chapter offers a reflection upon an European Union (EU) foreign policy complex that seeks both to address the major definitional issues surrounding the nature and direction of the EU's external relations but which also draws our attention to contemporary theoretical debates in both international relations and European integration. Many texts on the international capacity of the EU focus upon the development of decision-making and policy within Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP). The field of study in European political cooperation (EPC)/CFSP has been dominated by empirical accounts of decision-making, policy-making and regional or issue-based case studies. Fewer studies have sought to make explicit theoretical claims upon CFSP and to situate it in broader debates within either European studies or international relations. In the early twenty-first century, the EU is making massive leaps to expand both geographically and sectorally.

in Rethinking European Union Foreign Policy