• Politics and Strategy

    Matthew Harries: Jeremy Corbyn doesn't go nuclear

    30 September 2015.  Something remarkable happened in British politics on Wednesday; something that has not happened for a generation. The leader of the opposition, Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn – who would, as things stand, become prime minister if Labour were to win the 2020 general election – said that there were no circumstances under which he would authorise the use of nuclear weapons. In doing so, he accelerated the arrival of a confrontation that...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Mark Fitzpatrick: Ten ways to build on the Iran nuclear deal

    30 September 2015.  Once the Iran nuclear accord survived the 60-day US Congressional review period, attention turned to how to prevent Iran from cheating and how to constrain its problematic behaviour in other areas. Less ink has been spilt, however, on how to expand on the deal to further reduce nuclear dangers and regional instability. Call me Pollyanna, but here are ten ways to build on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). 1...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Elizabeth Pond: Will Ukraine snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?

    28 September 2015.  The good news from Ukraine is that after half a year of intensive shelling across the Donbas ‘truce’ line, the big guns went silent on 1 September and have stayed silent ever since. Russia has reined in the hotheads among its proxy separatists in eastern Ukraine who wanted to keep on fighting and seize more Ukrainian territory with the superior heavy weapons Moscow has showered on Donbas over the past...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Massimo Franco: A Latin American Pope Arrives

    21 September 2015.  For months, Pope Francis has been telling his closest advisers that he wants to arrive in the United States via the south of the American continent. Now he is following through on that symbolic geography. The Pope’s 22–27 September visit to the United States matters in both strategic and domestic terms. Touching US soil after a three-day stop in Cuba is already a remarkable novelty. It is as if Pope...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Avis Bohlen: Iran – An Opening for Diplomacy?

    16 September 2015.  Negotiation is an essential tool of diplomacy, as weapons are of war. The recently concluded Iran deal represents a major diplomatic achievement arrived at by long and patient negotiation. Its significance is likely to go far beyond the terms of the accord itself and must be judged in a broader diplomatic and strategic context. The Iran nuclear deal is important first and foremost for the stringent limits it places on...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Thomas C. Moore: Iran – Non-Proliferation Overshadowed

    16 September 2015.  The world’s major powers once agreed that Iran was no place for uranium enrichment or the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel. United after 9/11 and the jarring revelation of the A.Q. Khan proliferation network, they worked to defeat nuclear proliferation and terrorism – and the nexus of the two in Iran – without military force. They launched criteria-of-supply negotiations in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG); a moratorium on transfers of...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Bruno Tertrais: Iran – An Experiment in Strategic Risk-Taking

    16 September 2015.  The luxury of being a policy analyst is that one can afford to say what politicians cannot: ‘it’s complicated’. If I had been voting on the 14 July nuclear deal with Iran, I would have had to abstain. American and European diplomats worked hard to close most of the avenues and loopholes that Iran could exploit to advance its nuclear programme. The enriched-uranium stockpile and the number of centrifuges will be...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Matthew Harries: Morons, Losers and Leaders

    14 September 2015.  I’ll tell you what happens with impossible promises. - Neil Kinnock, 1 October 1985. I ‘We cannot waste this defeat’, said Harriet Harman, interim Labour leader, after her party’s bitter loss in Britain’s May 2015 general election. ‘We will dare to look over the precipice at what happened.’ Looking over the precipice, Labour saw the smouldering wreckage of an election campaign. The post-mortem has been traumatic, not least because, as late as election...

  • Politics and Strategy

    Mark Fitzpatrick: Iran – A Good Deal

    10 September 2015.  The more I study the Iran nuclear deal, the more deeply I appreciate its worth. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) agreed in Vienna on 14 July is better than all three of its antecedents. It goes beyond the political accord struck in Lausanne on 2 April, walking back from none of the parameters of that accord as described by the United States. Among other virtues, the verification procedures of the...

  • Politics and Strategy

    William Choong: Pacifism and the problems of history

    01 September 2015.  Recently, I was interviewed by a Japanese broadcast journalist on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s bid to push through legislation that would enable Japan to participate in collective self-defence with its allies. The journalist was taken aback when I said that the move was not controversial, given that Japan has already embarked on a process of gradual normalisation of its military for decades. In Japan, such views would be attacked by...

Politics and Strategy Homepage

The Survival Editors' Blog

Ideas and commentary from Survival editors and contributors

Latest Posts