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Leadership and foreign policy

Why did Tony Blair take Britain to war with Iraq? Because, this book argues, he was following the core political beliefs and style—the Blair identity—manifest and consistent throughout his decade in power. Kosovo, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan, and finally Iraq were wars to which Blair was drawn due to his black-and-white framing of the world, his overwhelming confidence that he could shape events, and his tightly-held, presidential style of government. This new application of political psychology to the British prime ministership analyses every answer Blair gave to a foreign policy question in the House of Commons during his decade in power in order to develop a portrait of the prime minister as decision maker. Drawing upon original interviews with major political, diplomatic and military figures at the top of British politics, the book reconstructs Blair's wars, tracing his personal influence on British foreign policy and international politics during his tumultuous tenure.

The Conservatives and Europe 1846–59
Author: Geoffrey Hicks

This book examines the mid-Victorian Conservative Party's significant but overlooked role in British foreign policy and in contemporary debate about Britain's relations with Europe. It considers the Conservatives' response—in opposition and government—to the tumultuous era of Napoleon III, the Crimean War and Italian Unification. Within a clear chronological framework, the book focuses on ‘high’ politics, and offers a detailed account of the party's foreign policy in government under its longest-serving but forgotten leader, the fourteenth Earl of Derby. It attaches equal significance to domestic politics, and incorporates an analysis of Disraeli's role in internal tussles over policy, illuminating the roots of the power struggle he would later win against Derby's son in the 1870s. Overall, the book helps provide us with a fuller picture of mid-Victorian Britain's engagement with the world.

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The Hungarian writings
Editor: Gareth Dale

When Karl Polanyi, in a letter of 1934, gave an account of 'the inner development' of his thought, he divided it into two periods. The first was his early life in Hungary, until 1919, the second was the fifteen years that followed, in Viennese exile. This book begins with a survey of Karl Polanyi's early life, and a summary overview of his engagement in emigre politics during his spells in Austria, Britain and North America. He became a central figure in its radical counter-culture, the members of which were to exert an influence upon twentieth-century thought. Polanyi's practical activities initially focused upon the Galilei Circle, a freemason-funded organisation of students and young intellectuals. The first part of the book talks about how ritual and superstition encompassed his everyday life. It discusses Mach's examination of the ideas concerning the so-called 'bodily' and 'spiritual' worlds; explaining why they are as they are, and elaborating useful concepts and rules. The next part explains history: the capitalist system will turn socialism into a state religion, just as the Roman Empire took over Christianity. Karl Kautsky's latest work presents a poignant picture of the disorderly retreat of Marxist socialism. The book looks at the Crossman intervention that is expected to weaken Winston Churchill's intellectual influence upon British foreign policy, and thereby hopefully open the way towards a better understanding, around the world, of the new, socialist Britain. Representative samples of his correspondence from these three periods are included in the final part of this book.

Between ambition and pragmatism

Britain and Africa in the twenty-first century provides the first analysis of the state of UK Africa policy in the era of austerity, Conservative government and Brexit. It explores how Britain’s relationship with Africa has evolved since the days of Blair, Brown and Make Poverty History and examines how a changing UK political environment, and international context, has impacted upon this long-standing – and deeply complex – relationship. This edited collection provides an indispensable reference point for researchers and practitioners interested in contemporary UK–Africa relations and the broader place of Africa in British politics and foreign policy. Across twelve chapters, the book’s contributors examine how far UK Africa policy has been transformed since the fall of the 1997–2010 Labour Government and how far Conservative, or Conservative-led, Governments have reshaped and re-cast links with the continent. The book includes analyses of UK approaches to diplomacy, security, peacekeeping, trade and international development in, or with, Africa. The contributions, offered by UK- and Africa-based scholars and practitioners, nonetheless take a broader perspective on UK–Africa relations, examining the changing perspectives, policies and actions of political parties, advocacy groups and the UK population itself. The authors argue that the Afro-optimism of the Blair years no longer provides the guiding framework for UK engagement with Africa. It has not, however, been replaced by an alternative paradigm, leaving significant space for different forms of relationship to be built, or reconstructed. The book includes a foreword by Chi Onwurah MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Africa.

Open Access (free)
US–UK relations in the era of détente, 1969–77
Author: Thomas Robb

This is the first monograph length study that charts the coercive diplomacy of the administrations of Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford as practiced against their British ally in order to persuade Edward Heath’s government to follow a more amenable course throughout the ‘Year of Europe’ and to convince Harold Wilson’s governments to lessen the severity of proposed defence cuts. Such diplomacy proved effective against Heath but rather less so against Wilson. It is argued that relations between the two sides were often strained, indeed, to the extent that the most ‘special’ elements of the relationship, that of intelligence and nuclear co-operation, were suspended. Yet, the relationship also witnessed considerable co-operation. This book offers new perspectives on US and UK policy towards British membership of the European Economic Community; demonstrates how US détente policies created strain in the ‘special relationship’; reveals the temporary shutdown of US-UK intelligence and nuclear co-operation; provides new insights in US-UK defence co-operation, and revaluates the US-UK relationship throughout the IMF Crisis.

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Stephen Benedict Dyson

cumbersome. The scope and ambition of Iraq policy was characteristic of a consistently proactive, interventionist foreign policy strategy. Finally, the belief that he could be simultaneously influential with the Americans, persuasive to the international community, and convincing to the British public was a hallmark of Blair’s confidence in his own efficacy. Indeed, the central argument of this book is that British foreign policy has been decisively shaped by this worldview and leadership style of Tony Blair during his time in office. Simply put, I argue that a convincing

in The Blair identity
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Rhiannon Vickers

provide an alternative foreign policy. This dearth of material occurs despite the fact that foreign policy has always been an area of contention for Labour, providing the arena for some of the most intense tribal warfare within the party; and it has contributed to the myth that Labour has been insular in its outlook, not much interested in international affairs, and has made little in the way of contribution to British foreign policy. This study, therefore, seeks to rectify this gap in the literature on both the political ideology and the history of the Labour Party

in The Labour Party and the world
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Rhiannon Vickers

exclusive. Because of this, Labour has tried to rethink the nature of British foreign policy. This study has argued that Labour has sought to offer an alternative to the traditional, power politics or realist approach of British foreign policy, which had stressed national self-interest. This alternative was a version of British foreign policy based on internationalism, which stressed cooperation and interdependence, and a concern with the international as well as the national interest. While this concept of internationalism is very vague, at its heart is the idea that

in The Labour Party and the world
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Steven Kettell

2 Old and new British foreign policy after 1945 evolved within a strategic context of progressive imperial and economic decline, Continental moves towards the integration of Europe, and the ‘special relationship’ with the US. One of its central aspects, as the post-war period unfolded, was a desire on the part of British governments to establish closer ties with the US as a means of compensating for Britain’s decline as an independent Great Power. Yet relations with both Europe and the US remained variable during this time, and the problems of decolonisation and

in New Labour and the new world order
Bill Jones

members, plus vacuous statements on wider global issues. The spheres of foreign policy In his perceptive book Between Europe and America , Andrew Gamble (2003, pp. 30–4) recalls Churchill’s 1946 invocation of Britain being at the touching point of three spheres: the British Empire; Anglo-America and Europe. Gamble suggests that ‘Britain’ should now be seen as a ‘union’ of its devolved constituent parts. There were at least three areas in which postwar British foreign policy could invest its emphasis, often represented by three spheres: Europe, America and the

in British politics today