The Right to Political Self-Determination: A Kurdish Case Study and Tool for Democracy Building in the MENA Region
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The Right to Political Self-Determination: A Kurdish Case Study and Tool for Democracy Building in the MENA Region
19 July @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
The issue of political self-determination: a cardinal principal of international law states that peoples – based on respect for the principle of equal rights and fair equality of opportunity – have the right to freely choose their sovereignty and international political status with no interference.
In recent years, we have moved away from the use of militaries to guarantee stability in those regions of the world most prone to instability – the MENA region being a perfect example. It is therefore necessary to explore new paths, and consider the emancipations of ethnic minorities to promote not only democratic change when confronted with despotism and/or state-run religious fundamentalism, but to also reinvent the concept of statehood as a vehicle for regional stability.
The Kurds, arguably the largest ethnic community in the world without a state of their own remain scattered across Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, under fear of oppression by their respective host countries. And though the legal foundations first for the emancipation and then for the legal right of self-determination of the Kurds were laid with the Treaty of Sevres in August 1920, such hopes were subsequently dashed.
More recently, the terrible advances of Islamic radicalism in the MENA region makes it imperative to revisit the concept of political self-determination and consider the possibility that aspiring nations not only deserve to see their aspirations met, but that such ambitions could help not only promote stability but help drive off terrorism.
By kind invitation of Mary Glindon MP, The Henry Jackson Society is delighted to invite you to a discussion around political self-determination of the Kurds and other minorities in the Middle East as a driving force for democratic change and the containment of dangerous radical ideologies.
Kamil Albishoka is an experienced researcher and International Law specialist whose main focus areas are human rights, public freedom, criminal justice and security, Kamil holds a Masters in Human Rights from the University of Birkbeck University of London and is currently working as a researcher and project manager at London Centre for International Law Practice.
Dr Bahar Baser joined Durham University’s School of Government and International Affairs in 2021. Previously, she was Associate Professor at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations, Coventry University where she led the “Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation Research Group”. Prior to that, she was a postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Warwick at the Department of Politics and International Studies between 2012 and 2014.
Dr Baser completed a PhD in Social and Political Sciences at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy. During her PhD, she had the opportunity to work as a Visiting Research Fellow at Humboldt University (Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences) in Germany, REMESO (Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society) in Norrkoping, Sweden and the Instituto de Ciencias Sociais (ICS) in Lisbon, Portugal.
She is an expert in the area of diaspora studies, peacebuilding and conflict transformation, with a regional focus on the Middle East. She has conducted extensive research on diaspora engagement in peace processes, post-conflict reconstruction and state-building in the Global South. She has published extensively on stateless diaspora activism and mobilisation in Europe with a specific focus on host states’ counterterrorism policies, radicalization of diaspora members and transnationalization of homeland conflicts.
She is the editor of Kurdish Studies Series published by Lexington Books and the co-editor of Diasporas and Transnationalism Series published by Edinburgh University Press. She is also a senior associate research fellow at the Security Institute for Governance and Leadership in Africa (SIGLA), Stellenbosch University, South Africa and visiting professor at Tampere Peace Research Institute, Tampere University, Finland.
Catherine Perez-Shakdam is a French Jewish political analyst and commentator for the Middle East. A former consultant for the United Nations Security Council on Yemen’s War Economy; her research was instrumental in better understanding Yemen’s political landscape and actors’ financial interests.
Her writing and commentaries on the Middle East have graced the cover of countless publications, including the Huffington Post, BBC Arabic, BBC Persia, Voices of America, and the Times of Israel.
In 2017 Catherine was the only Western media personality to have been granted an interview with now-President Ibrahim Raisi.
Her ability to move close to Iran’s Leadership and have access to key information as to the regime’s propagandist structure bought her the ire of Tehran and allegations that she had operated in Iran at the behest of foreign powers.
Once a close friend to Nader Talebzadeh, Catherine had a front row seat to the inner-workings of the Islamic Republic.
Mary Theresa Glindon (born 13 January 1957, Newcastle upon Tyne) is a British Labour Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tyneside since 2010.
She was born Mary Theresa Mulgrove. She attended Sacred Heart Grammar School, an RC girls’ direct grant grammar school in Fenham, now known as Sacred Heart Catholic High School, Newcastle upon Tyne.
Mary was selected in February 2010 as Labour candidate for the safe seat, while a Councillor for Battle Hill Ward on North Tyneside Council, after the previous MP Stephen Byers announced in November 2009 that he would not contest the next election.
At the general election in May 2010, she beat Liberal Democrat Councillor David Ord in to a distant second place to hold the seat with 50.7% of the votes, despite an 8.7% swing away from Labour. Glindon is a member of the Labour Friends of Israel and a member of the Labour Friends of Palestine and the Middle East.
As an MP her parliamentary voting record has included opposing the ‘bedroom tax’ and increasing welfare support for those unable to work due to illness or disability. She voted against raising tuition fees to £9000 and against the cut in the Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) for 16- to 19-year-olds. She has voted for measures to curb climate change and for measures to raise the level of income tax for those earning over £150,000.
In 2013 she was one of 161 MPs to oppose the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, though this was partially due to the fact the act was not ‘equal’ in that members of the public sector same sex couples would not be eligible for the same pension rights, which she stated during the debate. She is also a listed member of the House of Commons’ All-Party Parliamentary Pro-Life Group, opposing abortion.
She was a member of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee, and the Communities and Local Government Select Committee, as of 2010 and 2013, respectively. She was Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) to Mary Creagh when she was Shadow Secretary of State for Transport until 2014. Mary was re-elected on 8 May 2015, with 26,191 votes and 55.9% share of the votes cast. Mary has been a member of the Her Majesty’s Opposition Whips Team since April 2020.
Mary married Ray Glindon, also a Councillor, in 2000, however, Ray sadly died in April 2021.
The Henry Jackson Society was pleased to hold a discussion on political self-determination, focusing on the Kurdish people. Mary Glindon MP began the conversation by introducing the speakers. Catherine Perez-Shakdam discussed the positive impacts that Kurdish self-determination could have on the region. Dr Bahar Baser highlighted the different geopolitical contexts of political self-determination in Iraq and Iran and the controversial role of the PKK in this process. Kamil Alboshoka explained the link between self-determination and international law with, particularly, human rights being a significant factor. Finally, the speakers answered questions on the role of the international community in this process, the impact of the Syrian war on Kurdish self-determination, and the Iranian understanding of peace.
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The Henry Jackson Society is delighted to play host to a conversation between Ed Husain and Dr Alan Mendoza on “Among the Mosques: A journey across Muslim Britain” – Ed Husain’s latest book. Having travelled the length and breadth of the country and explored the full extent of the diversity of Britain’s Muslim population and … Continued
As the US-led full NATO withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan gets underway, severe security considerations remain largely unanswered. The Taliban are likely set to seize more control in the imminent and inevitable power vacuum. A growing Islamic State in Khorasan Province, in addition to a resurgent Al-Qaeda, are also taking root across the country. Weekly … Continued
The Islamic Republic of Iran has designs on Britain. Whilst Iranian actions in the Middle East have long been critically examined, too little attention has been given towards Iran’s influence in this country. This event introduces a detailed report by Dr Paul Stott which considers the following areas – politics, religion, the media, culture, diaspora … Continued
In May 2021, the Biden administration waived sanctions on the company building the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline. US Congress concluded that the sanctions were not in their national interest and have adopted a different approach to what some have called a ‘geopolitical prize’ for the Kremlin. Critics have argued that the US is prioritising … Continued
In November, Glasgow will be hosting the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26). With the presidency in its hands, the United Kingdom is keen to make a success of it and see countries across the world adopt more ambitious targets to cut carbon emissions. The United States’ renewed commitment to tackling climate change under the … Continued
So far within UK public debate the one area of cyber which has received little attention is offensive cyber operations. This appears to be changing, with the public announcement of the National Cyber Force (NCF) being created in November 2020, and recently detailed further in the Integrated Review. Given the construct of the NCF as a predominantly military … Continued
For the past five and a half years the United Kingdom has wrestled with its diplomatic attempts to try and bring the Iranian regime to nuclear compliance, in accordance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Originally conceived by the Obama administration, the so-called nuclear deal sought to curb Iran’s nuclear programme, which many in … Continued
89% of Russians feel pride in the Soviet victory over Nazism in World War Two. With the number of Soviet dead estimated at 27 million, the significant role it continues to play in Russian popular and political culture is to a certain extent understandable. But the Kremlin has co-opted this tragic and heroic legacy for … Continued
On the 12th February 2021 the Chinese Communist Party banned BBC World News from broadcasting within China. The move was seen as a response to the decision by Ofcom, the UK’s broadcasting regulator, to revoke the license of Chinese Global Television Network (CGTN). Following an investigation, Ofcom concluded that CGTN “is controlled by a body which … Continued
Since the end of the Cold War, the 15 successor states to the Soviet Union have adopted different paths to their economic and political transition. Some, like those in the Baltics, have become democratic and liberal, while others, such as Belarus and Tajikistan, remain authoritarian regimes. ‘The Westernization Report’, issued by the Washington D.C.-based StrategEast … Continued
Tensions are mounting as Russia continues to move troops and equipment to Crimea and the Ukrainian border. The UK and USA have unequivocally voiced their support for Ukraine and its territorial integrity but this new wave of Russia aggression poses the question: what can we do in the long-run to better support Ukraine? In particular, … Continued
Islamist extremism still continues to dominate the terror landscape. In the last decade we have seen the emergence of a number of new Islamist groups and a series of attacks perpetrated by terrorists acting both under the instruction of - and inspired by – Islamist terror groups. Most recently, ISIS and its barbaric ideology has … Continued
In the wake of the UK Government’s Integrated Review and accompanying Defence Command Paper, the UK Armed Forces are set to undergo a seismic structural change in how they operate. In particular, the British Army is to significantly reduce troop numbers in addition to a reduced heavy armour capability. However, there is more funding available … Continued
Disengagement and deradicalisation are terms often used interchangeably, with little meaningful inquiry as to what either imply. Accusations abound of the failures and deficiencies of the measures employed to ‘cure the terrorist’, often with little appreciation of the complexities of human behaviour and the plethora of social, psychological and environmental factors which can influence behavioural … Continued
From cultural nationalism to white supremacy, the far-right has become a significant counter terrorism priority over the last few years across Europe, the UK and North America. Far-right inspired plots, attacks and arrests are on the rise. This is a result of the increased membership of cultural nationalist, white nationalist, and white supremacist groups and … Continued
The cyber security insurance market never took off as expected and is currently facing a major crisis as claims from companies hit by the escalating ransomware wave hit the insurers. Still, Jan Lemnitzer argues that a well-regulated insurance market could provide protection to companies and solve the big issue in cybersecurity that years of awareness … Continued
In the foreign policy they pursued for more than 60 years, Jack, Bobby, and Ted Kennedy offer valuable lessons for President Biden. Throughout their lives, the Kennedy brothers believed that America must play a prominent role on the world stage, and that it could serve as a beacon for others to emulate. They feared war, … Continued
The US and EU’s lack of a coherent strategy towards the Western Balkans has emboldened Russia to hinder the region’s integration into the EU and NATO. In recent years, the Western Balkans has been at the forefront of Russia’s strategy to expand its global influence and undermine the West. These strategies have included more traditional soft … Continued
The crimes of the Chinese Communist Party in Tibet are well known as too is the failure of governments around to world to say, let alone do, anything in response. For years Freedom House placed Tibet as the second least free place in the world and since the 2008 Tibetan uprising suppression there has intensified. … Continued
Across the Eurasian landmass, authoritarian regimes are using deeply subversive means to destabilise the liberal democratic global order. A revisionist Russia is actively engaged in using below-threshold means to destabilise NATO partners across Europe. In the Baltic states and across eastern Europe, Russia continues utilising cyber-attacks and information warfare, whilst recently utilising sophisticated disinformation campaigns … Continued
It is almost five years since the Oxford English Dictionary named “post-truth” its word of the year. Since then, the onslaught of fake news, disinformation, and conspiracy theorising have not only remained unrelenting, the problem has grown worse. With the COVID-19 pandemic, a maturing environment and practice of disinformation has found its ideal host, a … Continued
On the 1st of February 2021, newly re-elected State Counsellor of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi was forcefully detained by a military junta, alongside other members of her National League of Democracy (NLD) party. This coup took place hours before her confirmation in Parliament. Leader of the Military, Min Aung Hlaing, claimed that the NLD … Continued
We are delighted to host celebrated investigative journalists Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan as they discuss their timely and fascinating book The Compatriots: The Brutal and Chaotic History of Russia’s Exiles, Émigrés, and Agents Abroad. Building on their extensive expertise on Russian intelligence, this event will discuss the complex and changeable role of Russian émigrés … Continued
On 25th January 2020, the UK’s Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation, Jonathan Hall QC announced a new review into terrorism across the prison estate in England and Wales. This timely announcement comes in the wake of a number of terrorist attacks perpetrated by radicalised offenders released from across the UK prison estate and an increase … Continued
2020 was a turning point for Britain. Following the death of George Floyd in the US state of Minnesota, a wave of Black Lives Matter demonstrations took place in the UK. The protests, as far-reaching as the Shetland Islands to the Isle of Wight, have undoubtedly had an impact on various spheres of British life … Continued
Since the last National Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS) has been established, the world has endured global cyber attacks in WannaCry and Not-Petya, financial losses to cyber crime have ballooned and show no signs of slowing down. There is a clear and present need for a new generation of NCSS, but what directions should UK … Continued
In 2014 army chief Prayut Chan-o-cha launched a coup which brought himself and the Thai military to power. Five years later elections, widely seen as unfree and unfair, took place in an attempt to legitimise this rule. The junta remained in power, marking yet another setback for democracy in Thailand. This has not occurred without … Continued
Most who study or work to prevent and counter violent extremism and terrorism do so with one overriding purpose - to reduce, or even prevent further victims of terrorist attacks. Consulting survivors and the families of those lost to terrorism holds significant potential for the continued development of preventative and responsive strategies to terrorism - … Continued
India will soon have the largest population in the world, and in ten years is predicted to have the third-largest economy and defence budget. It is no wonder that Prime Minister Boris Johnson was keen to visit New Delhi for the country’s national day last month. While Covid may have cancelled this trip it has … Continued
Even in prison, Aleksei Navalny has continued his epic battle against Putin’s kleptocracy. On 19th January, Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation released their biggest investigation yet into their most sensitive topic yet: Vladimir Putin’s own wealth. The video detailing Putin’s $1billion palace reached 85 million views in just six days and sparked large-scale protests across more than sixty … Continued
In the wake of the Prime Minister’s much-vaunted recent announcement of the uplift in defence spending, the Royal Navy are set to be the big winners with increased frigates and destroyers bolstering the navy’s fleet. On the back of this announcement the UK-led Carrier Strike Group is set for its first operational mission this spring, … Continued
In the 2019 Queen's Speech, the Government announced it was “considering whether to follow allies in adopting a form of foreign agent registration”. The Government’s announcement followed a series of concerning accounts of strategic adversaries conducting disinformation and aggressive lobbying operations in London, at the risk of undermining the UK’s democratic system. In order … Continued
On 17th July, 2014, passenger jet Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 was destroyed over eastern Ukraine. All 298 people on board were killed, their bodies strewn across the cornfields of east Ukraine. These people were victims of Russia’s proxy war in Ukraine, which rages to this day and has claimed over 13,000 lives. Immediately after MH17 … Continued
2020 marked a testing year for the English education system. Over the course of the Covid-19 pandemic, there have been concerns that exam cancellations and the shift towards greater virtual learning, carries the risk of widening existing social and economic inequalities in England. In addition to this, cultural fault-lines have emerged over the content and … Continued
Anybody familiar with Russia will recognise the constancy of campaigns launched by state, quasi-state, and non-state actors – from law enforcement officers to so-called journalists and internet trolls – to discredit out-of-favour figures by the spreading of damaging information about them and their alleged activities. This phenomenon — “black PR” (chernyi piar) — emerged in the 1990s and has over time become a … Continued
The past few months have been especially terrible for Hongkongers. Their city, which over the past few years has bustled with political activity and protest, stood still. However, it was not just the fear of COVID-19 which kept people off the streets. The introduction of the national security law, in the summer of 2020, has … Continued
The December 2019 General Election will go down as one of the most dramatic in postwar history. Shattering Labour’s ‘red wall’ of previously safe seats in working-class towns across the Midlands, Northern England, and Wales, Prime Minister Boris Johnson led the Conservatives to their largest parliamentary majority since 1987 – with former Labour leader Jeremy … Continued
RSVP No European country has suffered as grievously from jihadist terrorist as France. Nearly three hundred people have been killed in a succession of outrages since 2015. President Macron has responded to the horrific murder of schoolteacher Samuel Paty, and the deadly knife attack committed at the Notre Dame Basilica in Nice, with a robust … Continued
Next year marks the centenary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. For Xi Jinping it is the first milestone in completing his ‘China Dream’, the last being 2049 which marks 100 years since the founding of the People’s Republic. By this point Xi hopes to restore China as a great nation, one … Continued
The election of Donald Trump in 2016 ushered in a very unique and controversial style of US Presidency. The development and delivery of US Foreign Policy by President Trump and his administration was at times both bold and brash, marked by unilateralism, and has been characterised by some as rife with internal conflicts among Cabinet … Continued
The 2020 US Presidential Election will go down as one of the most fascinating elections in American political history. While outgoing President Donald Trump has been soundly defeated in terms of the both the popular and Electoral College vote, initial voting data suggests that he unexpectedly managed to build on his 2016 support among both … Continued
WHEN 16:00-17:00 BST 7 December 2020 WHERE ONLINE Speakers: Lt. Col. (Ret.) Glen Grant Defence & Reform Expert, Ukrainian Institute of the Future & Senior Fellow, Institute for Statecraft, UK Moderator: Dr Alan Mendoza Executive Director, The Henry Jackson Society RSVP HERE The Henry Jackson Society and British-Ukrainian Aid are delighted to announce British-Ukrainian Aid’s … Continued
Following the Labour Party’s disastrous showing in last December’s UK General Election, much has been said on the breakdown of its relationship with traditional working-class voters in the industrial heartlands. However, figures suggest that there has also been a notable fraying of ties between Labour and British voters of Indian origin. In Harrow East – … Continued
Watch this event back here: https://youtu.be/C-IdqsZUhVg See the event transcript In response to China’s rise, the term ‘Indo-Pacific’ has become increasingly popular among strategic policy circles. The United States, Japan, Australia, and India have all created their own Indo-Pacific strategies or approaches, each with a slightly different interpretation – and ambition – for the … Continued
The Chinese Communist Party's actions in Hong Kong show that it is increasingly willing to act in ways that violate international norms, laws and expectations when it sees doing so as being in its own interests. Nowhere is this truer than in circumstances in which President Xi perceives the legitimacy of the party to rule … Continued
Following the police homicide of African-American George Floyd in the US state of Minnesota on 25 May 2020, a wave of civil unrest involving Black Lives Matter activists has gripped America’s major cities, from the eastern state of California to the western state of New York. However, the death of George Floyd has thrust issues … Continued
On 9 August, Belarusians took to the polls in their country’s presidential election. Aliaksandr Lukashenka, the five-term president, claimed a landslide victory, but there is compelling evidence that the vote was rigged. For the past week, citizens have protested against Lukashenka’s government and the election results. These protests have led to a troubling police crackdown, … Continued
Since the outset of the global Coronavirus pandemic, fundamental assumptions about our world have been called into question. Much of this reevaluation has focused on the question of trade. With nations unable to obtain essential supplies including PPE amidst the pandemic, import security has come to be seen as a national security concern. Nations have … Continued
President Vladimir Putin’s Russia seeks to weaken Western institutions and governments. Its disinformation campaigns attempt to exacerbate pre-existing divisions and create polarisations in societies. These campaigns are often most visible during elections, but they do not stop when the ballot box closes. Instead they are one of a number of tools in the Kremlin’s broader … Continued
The HJS Virtual Event Series: ‘Religious Freedom in China: A Spotlight on Repression’ – Thursday 16th July, 4pm-5.30pm (BST)
China today is facing the worst crackdown on human rights since the Tiananmen massacre in 1989. Across the board, basic freedoms are severely restricted and human rights widely and systematically violated by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). But there is one freedom which is experiencing, arguably, the worst repression since the Cultural Revolution, and that … Continued
How does the Chinese Government engineer its victories around the world? How has this threat influenced different aspects of our societies? How does it seek to persuade our leaders, policymakers, and elites to take decisions in its interests? These questions are no longer the niche interests of security analysts but real and present threats to our … Continued
The recent Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrations in the UK, following the police homicide of George Floyd on 25 May 2020 in the US state of Minnesota, have thrust issues such as trust and confidence in British public institutions into the spotlight. But messaging around the issue of black lives has become intertwined with the … Continued
A discussion with the chairs of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs, Defence and International Development Select Committees: Tom Tugendhat MP, Tobias Ellwood MP and Sarah Champion MP Covid-19 has interrupted HM Government’s Integrated Strategic Review. The pandemic – and the geopolitics behind it – has forced Britain’s strategists and policymakers to think harder about how the … Continued
20 years ago, Sir Robert Cooper’s updated pamphlet – The Postmodern State and the World Order – was published. It focused on the changing strategic situation in Europe. His argument, in a nutshell, was that globalisation and the end of the Cold War had rendered Europe a very different place to what had gone before. … Continued
The HJS Virtual Event Series: ‘Prof. Niall Ferguson: In Conversation – How Coronavirus Will Change the World of International Relations’
All event times are in BST. It is evident that Coronavirus has transformed our world. But what will its impact be on international relations and global politics? Whether it is changes in the international order and how that order interacts, the future of globalisation, China’s global role, the relative strengths of the free versus … Continued
Event times are in BST. While most look on a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic with worry, and view it as a challenge to be overcome, there are dangerous, hate-filled actors who consider these troubling times to be a gift. A golden opportunity not to be wasted. Far-right extremists – both abroad and closer … Continued
HJS VIRTUAL EVENT “Russia and the High North: How Should the West Engage the Next Chair of the Arctic Council (2021-23)?”
All event times are in BST In 2021, for a two-year period, Russia will chair the Arctic Council, the leading intergovernmental forum promoting cooperation in the Arctic. It will do so whilst the region – and the world – grapples with the coronavirus pandemic, ongoing tensions between Russia and the West, and uncertainty over … Continued
Beijing’s plans to impose a ‘national security law’ on Hong Kong’s independent judiciary have provoked an international outcry. The EU’s top diplomat has said that China’s attempts to strengthen its control of Hong Kong pose a threat to the rules-based international order. The proposed law conflicts directly with China’s international obligations under the legally-binding Sino-British … Continued
HJS VIRTUAL EVENT: “Brian H. Hook & The Rt. Hon. Jeremy Hunt MP: In Transatlantic Conversation on Iran”
It is easy to forget this now, but at the start of 2020, the biggest flashpoint for many international policy-makers was not a global pandemic in the making, but the vexed question of how to handle Iran. When US President Donald Trump withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in 2018 supported by the … Continued
The HJS Virtual Event Series: ‘COVID-19 and Social Media – Meeting Challenges using Lessons Learned from Countering Terrorism’
Following the extensive use of social media platforms by extremist groups and terrorist organisations for propaganda and recruitment purposes, technology companies have taken important proactive policy decisions on removing material and banning users from their sites. This discussion will focus on whether some of the same techniques and lessons learned can be applied to new … Continued
All event times are in BST Ukraine is used to fighting crises – and at the moment it is fighting three. The country currently has had around 20,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, in a population of almost 42 million. It has the lowest testing rate in Europe, and the health care system is dilapidated … Continued
All event times in BST Covid-19 has hit Western and Southern European countries – Spain, Italy, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland – particularly hard. Across the continent, governments have implemented ‘lock downs’ to contain and repress the spread of the virus. China and Russia have seized on … Continued
Event times are in BST The United Kingdom (UK) is currently in second place behind the United States (US) in terms of the national number of COVID-19 deaths, and also ranks highly in terms of active cases. There are of course valid criticisms to be made about using ‘league tables’ without adjusting for population … Continued
Covid-19 has left a trail of destruction everywhere in its wake, but one of its most pernicious impacts is likely to be in the advances made by authoritarian states – and putative authoritarians – against their own populations but also against the free world. Human rights violations and suppressions of dissent that would normally spark global … Continued
Event times are in BST In a provocative new thesis – laid out in his book “Has China Won? The Chinese Challenge to American Primacy” – veteran diplomat Professor Kishore Mahbubani takes as his starting point the common idea that the defining geopolitical clash of the century will be between the USA and China, … Continued
As Europe is to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of WW2, national narratives of those historic events hugely differ across Europe. Identity and historical memory are often hijacked by populist and nationalist agendas and history suddenly enters the political mainstream. In Britain, the tabloid media has often fallen back on spurious references … Continued
Since the end of the Cold War, Britain established an increasingly ‘global approach’ to its foreign, security and defence policy. This approach foresaw the acceleration of globalisation, the rise of liberal democracy around the world, the continuity of Western technological ascendancy, and conditions preferable to a less cohesive and robust British nation-state. With the onset … Continued