Essays

The Responsibility to Protect: a new response to humanitarian suffering?

Antony Lewis • Jul 6 2010 • Essays

The “responsibility to protect” principle (R2P) has radically transformed the international community’s approach to major cases of humanitarian suffering, shifting its focus from “intervention” to “prevention”. Nevertheless, the tragic case of Darfur has clearly demonstrated its limitations.

Hobbes and Thucydides: How the fathers of Realism differ from their offspring

Lea Wisken • Jul 1 2010 • Essays

If the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes has been called a “father of Realism”, then the Greek historian Thucydides must surely be its forefather. This essay is going to compare Hobbes’ and Thucydides’ opinions on the sources of state-behaviour with respect to Realist standpoints, questioning whether they can justifiably be classified as belonging to this school of thought.

Visual Culture in Politics: The Obama “Progress” Poster

Jeremy Low • Jun 28 2010 • Essays

The 2008 US Presidential Elections was a watershed in American politics which culminated with Barack Obama being sworn in as the nation’s first African-American president. The “Progress” poster by street artist Shepard Fairey was an important medium in which the message and ideals of Barack Obama were instantly transmitted to the public.

Democratization and Peaceful Relations

Jonathan Weitzmann • Jun 25 2010 • Essays

The proposition that democratic states do not fight interstate wars against each other is one of the most influential ideas in international politics in recent years. Since 1974 eighty-five authoritarian regimes have ended. Yet of these, only thirty states have survived as fairly stable democracies. It seems the shift away from dictatorial rule towards a form of governance offering a more liberal and democratic stance has not always concluded with the construction of peaceful domestic and international relations

The Dalits of India: education and development

Erik Fraser • Jun 23 2010 • Essays

There have been many attempts to help increase the quality of life for the Dalits through development focused on enrolment in primary education. But, can education-based development programs work?

Does Democratization Equal Peace?

Joely Denkinger • Jun 22 2010 • Essays

The unstable phase somewhere between autocracy and well-established democracy presents the most challenges to peace at home and abroad. Limited definitions of the transition process and its endpoint are counterproductive for democratizing countries, as is bestowing the label of ‘democracy’ when it is inaccurate, and relying solely on elections. We cannot hope for the democratic peace thesis to be realized until countries move out of the transition phase and become truly established democracies

Have Eurosceptic Fears About British Sovereignty Been Realised?

David Sykes • Jun 20 2010 • Essays

If Britain were to break free of Europe it would flounder as the rest of the world passes by, carrying Britain in its current, with Britain having no control over its heading. This would mean that the citizens of Britain, rather than being active entities whose actions and ideas are amplified by the EU, would be reactive to forces outside of their control in a small and powerless, but foolishly proud, nation state.

A World Without Nuclear Weapons?

David Gardner • Jun 18 2010 • Essays

Pierre Gallois, an advisor to Charles DeGaulle, argued that the mere possession of a nuclear arsenal was enough to deter other nations from waging a war, and as a result he argued that the spread of nuclear weapons would increase international stability. Colin Powell may have been naïve when he said that he wished to see zero nuclear weapons in the world, but hopefully true debate from a practical and realistic perspective will help to make the world a better place

Will the Cluster Munitions Convention prove ineffective?

Daniel Gray • Jun 16 2010 • Essays

Cluster munitions consist of a ‘container’ that contains a number of smaller sub-munitions or ‘bomblets’ which scatter over a large area and explode on impact. The Convention on Cluster Munitions 2008 is set to come in to force on the 1st of August 2010; hailed as an historic addition to International Humanitarian Law, it seeks to prohibit to use, production, stockpiling and transfer of cluster munitions.

The Enduring Wisdom of Sun Tzu and Clausewitz

Brad Smith • Jun 15 2010 • Essays

This essay will assess the relevance of the principles developed in On War and The Art of War to the conduct of war by International Security Assistance Forces in Afghanistan, contrasting the resilient lessons of each philosopher in modern combat. The result is solidified in the idea that war is dynamic -a dialogue that is malleable to whatever will is imposed on it-yet there are universal characteristics of war that are pervasive across time and culture.


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