The Afghanistan Effect: Isolationism in US Foreign Policy

On September 28th 2021, General Mark Milley, US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, testified before the US Senate Armed Services Committee regarding the end of US military involvement in Afghanistan. The general responded to Senator Hawley’s question on the evacuation of US citizens: “Strategically, the war is lost…. Continue reading

Not Your Grandparents’ Grand Strategy: Rethinking Liberal Hegemony

Since the end of the Cold War, America’s commitment to a grand strategy of liberal hegemony has habitually set the parameters of foreign policy debate. The bipartisan consensus in Washington D.C. sees the United States as the indispensable nation whose leadership is required in perpetuity in the name of upholding… Continue reading

From Trinity to Trump: The Politics of Nuclear Memory in the 2020 Election

The 75th anniversaries of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings in 2020, while having low-key, in-person gatherings on account of COVID-19, still resonated through a range of electronic and broadcast media, as did the controversies surrounding them, whether historic or current, including reflections on ongoing nuclear policies.[i] Existing academic studies… Continue reading

Book Review: “America in Afghanistan: Foreign Policy and Decision Making from Bush to Obama to Trump” by Sharifullah Dorani

Sharifullah Dorani. America in Afghanistan: Foreign Policy and Decision Making from Bush to Obama to Trump (I.B. Tauris, 2019) The new book by Dr. Sharifullah Dorani, “America in Afghanistan: Foreign Policy and Decision Making from Bush to Obama to Trump” is not just another story of Afghanistan’s troubled past, but… Continue reading

Book Review: Liam Kennedy, Afterimages: Photography and U.S Foreign Policy

The distance between global politics and its mediation to the individual is perhaps as proximal as it has ever been in our current moment, where information technologies and social media reduce the disconnect and render world crises as visible, immediate concerns. Photography, as the most readily-available and instant of all digital visual technologies, sits at the heart of how geopolitics and, specifically, conflict are culturally consumed. Such ideas are brought to the fore in Liam Kennedy’s latest publication Afterimages: Photography and U.S Foreign Policy (2016), in which he recounts American foreign policy, from the Vietnam War to the War on Terror, through the lens of photographic mediation. Continue reading

Book Review: Constructing Presidential Legacy: How We Remember the American President by eds. Michael Patrick Cullinane and Sylvia Ellis

From presidential farewell addresses to depictions of presidents in film, advertising and literature, Michael P. Cullinane and Sylvia Ellis’s edited volume Constructing Presidential Legacyoffers a valuable addition to the growing body of literature concerning American presidential legacies. Continue reading

Our Latest Longest War: Losing Hearts and Minds in Afghanistan

Aaron O’Connell is a veteran of the Afghanistan war — the aptly dubbed ‘latest longest’ one for the United States — where he served as Special Assistant to General David Petraeus. The book’s title evokes both the spectre of America’s other endless war, that in Vietnam, as well as the… Continue reading

More on War by Martin Van Creveld

“You may not be interested in war, but war may be interested in you.” (p.1) How many of us want to read about war? Does it remind us all of pain, loss, blood and misery? Martin Van Creveld’s newest book, “More on War”, is not a story of these things. He uses examples drawn from military history to explain what war is and add More to what we already know on this difficult subject. 

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University of Nottingham: Review: HOTCUS Inaugural Work-in-Progress Meeting

Review: HOTCUS Inaugural Work-in-Progress Meeting, University of Nottingham, 19 October 2018 At the inaugural HOTCUS work-in-progress meeting, two developing journal articles were discussed: Dr Miguel Hernandez’s (University of Exeter) paper, ‘”The Menace of Modern Immigration”: Nativism and Violence in the 1920s Ku Klux Klan’ and Dr Alex Bryne’s (University of… Continue reading

Book Review: Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism: U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security, 1920-2015, by Melvyn P. Leffler

Safeguarding Democratic Capitalism presents a selection of work from one of the world’s leading scholars of US foreign relations. Together these essays offer an elegant and engagingly written survey of twentieth century US foreign policy and national security debates. Continue reading