Comment/OpEd

In Britain and Across the World, An Age-Old Schism Becomes Ever More Bitter - Sunday Times 3 Jan 2016

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http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/focus/article1652282.ece Original Version: For most Westerners the Shia-Sunni conflict has been a confusing but distant phenomenon that rumbles along in the background of Middle Eastern and South Asian politics: an obscure theological dispute within Islam that only makes headlines when a Shia mosque is destroyed in Pakistan or Hezbollah blows up a Sunni leader in Lebanon. [Read more…]

Rwanda, Britain, and the Strange Case of General Karake (Politico Aug. 19, 2015)

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Rwanda, Britain, and the Strange Case of General Karake (Politico Aug. 19, 2015)

Why Does Europe Hound Rwanda – A self-reliant, tough, no-nonsense country is hard to patronize, perhaps? Supporters of Rwandan General Karenzi Karake celebrate after he was granted bail | Getty Travelers queuing at London’s Heathrow airport two months ago witnessed something peculiar: the very public arrest of Rwanda’s intelligence chief, Lt. Gen. Karenzi Karake, as he was [Read more…]

Reparations for the Raj? Mr Tharoor, you must be joking! (Politico Aug 3, 2015)

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Reparations for the Raj? Mr Tharoor, you must be joking! (Politico Aug 3, 2015)

The controversial Indian politician Shashi Tharoor sparks a polemical debate at the Oxford Union LONDON — An Oxford Union debate in which a senior Indian legislator, Shashi Tharoor, made a very funny speech last week calling for Britain to make reparations to India for the sins of the Raj, ignited a social media firestorm that culminated [Read more…]

Aid is no substitute for defence - as Michael Fallon knows (Spectator Coffee House 30 June 2015)

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Aid is no substitute for defence - as Michael Fallon knows (Spectator Coffee House 30 June 2015)

It’s been obvious for a while that the Prime Minister is exasperated by the way American and other allied officials – including President Obama himself – keep expressing concern about Britain’s rapidly shrinking defence capabilities and the prospect of yet more defence cuts. David Cameron also dislikes being reminded that he lectured other Nato leaders about meeting the alliance’s [Read more…]

Why the UK's "Prevent" strategy Isn't working (Spectator Blog June 18, 2015)

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Telling young men that ISIS is ‘dangerous’ will only encourage them to go “The dreams in which I’m dying are the best I’ve ever had’ When we were both sixteen, my then-best friend Dave carved the above lyric on his school desk. It was from the song ‘Mad World’ by the band Tears for Fears and [Read more…]

It's Crazy to Cut Defence and then Boost Foreign Aid (Daily Express June 5, 2015)

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It's Crazy to Cut Defence and then Boost Foreign Aid (Daily Express June 5, 2015)

BOTH David Cameron and George Osborne have stated at various times that the defence of the realm is the first duty of any government. Despite this and despite the PM’s urging fellow Nato leaders to spend the required minimum of two per cent GDP on defence, the Government has announced that the UK’s fast-shrinking and demoralised Armed Forces [Read more…]

In Defense of Tony Blair, Peace Envoy (Politico.eu May 28, 2015)

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The former prime minister worked hard on the Middle East. But it was an impossible job. LONDON — You don’t have to be a devoted fan of Tony Blair to see that the mockery he has received concerning his resignation as Middle East peace envoy is unfair. Much of the criticism he received during his eight [Read more…]

Honey, I Shrunk the Kingdom (Politico.eu May 21, 2015)

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On foreign policy and defense, David Cameron’s UK is behaving like a second Belgium. LONDON — During the British general election Ed Miliband scored a hit that few noticed. In a speech at Chatham House he accused David Cameron of pursuing an “isolationist” foreign policy that has led to the “biggest loss of influence for our country in [Read more…]

The Afghan Handover (The Weekly Standard Nov.17, 2014)

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The Afghan Handover (The Weekly Standard Nov.17, 2014)

It’s not too late for the president to rethink his arbitrary end date Kabul With less than two months to go until the end of the mission, the International Security Assistance Force headquarters in Kabul can feel a little forlorn. You still encounter an amazing mix of uniforms, headgear, ethnicities, and accents, with Macedonian troops brushing [Read more…]

Enemies, Allies and Kurdistan (Weekly Standard, Nov. 03, 2014)

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The Case For a Major New US Military Base It is not clear at the time of writing if Turkey will or will not allow the United States to use the NATO air base at Incirlik for airstrikes against ISIS forces in Syria and Iraq. On October 13, national security adviser Susan Rice announced that Turkey [Read more…]