The Ambiguities of Power: British Foreign Policy since 1945

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Using formerly secret government documents and independent sources, this historical study argues for a radically revised understanding of Post-war British foreign policy. Dr Curtis shows that, contrary to the impression usually conveyed by both academic writing and press coverage, British policy, in both intention and effect, had been far removed from the principles it has conventionally been assumed to be based upon: the pursuit of peace, the promotion of democracy and human rights, and the relief of poverty. ...
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Overview

Using formerly secret government documents and independent sources, this historical study argues for a radically revised understanding of Post-war British foreign policy. Dr Curtis shows that, contrary to the impression usually conveyed by both academic writing and press coverage, British policy, in both intention and effect, had been far removed from the principles it has conventionally been assumed to be based upon: the pursuit of peace, the promotion of democracy and human rights, and the relief of poverty. The book covers the whole of the post-war period. It examines British foreigh policy planners' aims abd interventions in a host of Third World countries, as well as looking at the special relationship with the United States. The study is brought up to date with an examination of the war against Iraq, policy towards Indonesia/East Timor and Britain's role in the new Pax Americana.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Drawing on formerly secret government documents and independent sources, argues that both the intent and the effect of postwar British foreign policy has been very different than the professed goals of peace, democracy and human rights, and the relief of poverty worldwide. Covers the western world and Britain's place in it at the end of the war, colonial imperatives in the Middle East and elsewhere, the negligence and slaughter of people in the Third World, support for US aggression, and continuing positions and actions. Paper edition (unseen), $25.00. Distributed in the US by Humanities Press. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781856493482
  • Publisher: Zed Books
  • Publication date: 8/15/1995
  • Pages: 256

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1 Aims and Priorities 10
2 Threats and Remedies 29
3 Colonialism under Decolonisation 56
4 Controlling the Middle East: the Early Years 87
5 Unpeople 116
6 The Special Relationship: US Aggression, British Support 146
7 The Practice of International Order 180
8 The Ongoing War 211
Index 242
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