New Research Published

As some of you know, along with my continuing research into the Clinton administration, I have been working on a project to compare and contrast the Nixon and Obama administrations and their use of wars of choice.

I am delighted that the second paper in this series has now been published and invite you to read it, along with the first paper and my other academic pieces HERE

I hope you find the work to be both interesting and challenging and welcome your thoughts.

 

Hillary Rising

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I am delighted to announce that my second book will be published on January 7, 2016 by Biteback. Titled, Hillary Rising, the book will be a timely examination of Hillary Rodham Clinton and her rise to her current position as presumptive nominee for the Democratic Party in the presidential election of 2016.

On 12th April 2015, Hillary Clinton announced that she would run for President in 2016, casting herself as the ‘champion of everyday Americans’. After three decades of public life and intense media scrutiny, what drives this most intriguing and polarising of political figures? What kind of president will she make?

My new political biography will be a clear-sighted, non-partisan analysis of Hillary Clinton’s rise to power, tracing her path from Republican adolescent to First Lady, Senator, Secretary of State and Presidential candidate to uncover her core principles and her political ideology.

As the only book on Hillary’s life and career by an expert on Bill Clinton’s presidency, it draws on original interviews with close associates of both Clintons and on a wealth of recently declassified materials from the Clinton archive to reveal the continuities and differences between Hillary and Bill, and whether it is realistic to talk of a ‘Clinton dynasty’.

Hillary Rising can be pre-ordered NOW from Amazon HERE

 

 

JDB, Policy Briefs and Politics

Several years ago, my colleague (Dr. Mike Keating) and I sought to introduce a new form of assessment to our students that bridged academic rigor with real-world practical skills. The result was the Policy Brief.

Having introduced the concept to our students we felt the process involved was worthy of wider attention so we sat down, put our heads together once more and produced an article that was subsequently published by the Political Studies Association in their publication ‘Politics.’

All well and good you may say, but why mention this now?

Well the editors have just issued a new publication dedicated to articles that address Learning and Teaching and have chosen to include our piece along with only 8 others that it refers to in the introduction as being ‘the best articles on learning and teaching that have been published in ‘Politics’ in recent years.’

I’m delighted that our work has been recognized and thrilled to be able to bring it to you HERE.

Hope you enjoy it.

JDB and the Foreign Affairs Committee

On Tuesday October 15 I was very proud to appear before the UK Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee as they begin hearings into the direction of the US-UK relationship under the coalition government. We covered a great deal of ground and I am delighted to be able to bring you coverage of that event:

Full details of the hearings can be found HERE

The hearings can be watched HERE

My testimony runs from 15:37 to 16:13.

 

JDB Speaking At Chatham House

On Thursday September 5, 2013, I was honoured to be invited to address an invited audience at the Royal Institute of International Affairs at Chatham House. Founded in 1920 and home to the famed ‘Chatham House Rule,’ the organisation is ranked No. 1 Think Tank outside of the US, and No. 2. Think Tank Worldwide.

I led off discussion in at a debate entitled, Syria: The International Response, and was honoured to be joined by author Dr Alan George, Chatham House
Research Director of International Security, Dr Patricia Lewis, and Rt Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP, Chairman, Intelligence and Security Committee; UK Foreign Secretary (1995-97). The session was masterfully chaired by Philippe Sands QC, Barrister, Matrix Chambers; Professor of International Law, University College London.

It was a wonderful evening in which I was able to address the development of the US position in regard to Syria and the impact that this has had on US-UK relations. It also enabled me to address the forthcoming debate in Congress.

The presentations were followed by a lively and informed Q&A session that further added to the evening.

A very nice photograph of the evening is available HERE

I was delighted to receive a very kind letter from Deputy Director of Chatham House Events, Catherine O’Keeffe:

 

On behalf of Chatham House, I would like to thank you very much for coming to speak to our members and guests yesterday evening. The audience greatly appreciated the opportunity to hear you discuss Syria and the international response. Your insights on US foreign policy were particularly valuable to the discussion.

Equally appreciated was your participation in the question and answer session, where you addressed a diverse set of challenging issues with great clarity. We received many positive comments from participants on how much they valued the new insights you were able to share with them.

 

 

Obama’s Power Play

This is just a short posting, as the UK Parliament is recalled to debate events in Syria.

Across the Pond, the President has a dilemma. He was elected as the apparent antidote to George W. Bush but has prevaricated in the face of slaughter in Syria for over a year. Now it appears that an air strike is imminent. So what has brought this about?

Here are a few choice quotes that may give us a clue:

‘American political leaders interpret society-wide silence as an indicator of public indifference…’ (xvii)

‘No U.S. president has ever made genocide prevention a priority, and no U.S. president has ever suffered politically for his indifference to its occurrence. It is thus no coincidence that genocide rages on.’ (xxi)

‘Over the course of the last century, the United States has made modest progress in its responses to genocide. The persistence and proliferation of dissenters within the U.S. government and human rights advocates outside it have made a policy of silence in the face of genocide more difficult to sustain.’ (503)

‘ American leaders did not act because they did not want to.’ (508)

‘One mechanism for altering the calculus of U.S. leaders would be to make them publicly or professionally accountable for inaction.’ (510)

‘The United States should stop genocide for two reasons. The first and most compelling reason is moral. When innocent life is being taken on such a scale and the United States has the power to stop the killing at reasonable risk, it has a duty to act. It is this belief that motivates most of those who seek intervention.’ (512)

These are not the quotes of a wild-eyed outsider, but of the current US Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, drawn from her Pulitzer Prize winning book, ‘Problem From Hell.’

Having recruited Power to the administration and promoted her at the start of his second term, how could Obama not be influenced by such thinking?

Having accepted a position in an administration, how could Power remain in post if the US did not act?

We shall see how both the president and his ambassador respond to the developing situation in the coming days…

Update and Thanks

As the British new academic year looms large on the horizon and the new football season kicks off, I thought I’d update you on my activities these past weeks.

First, however, let me thank all of you who have subscribed to my blog this summer. The numbers are truly humbling and I thank each and every one of you. To all of you who have taken the time to visit my site and in many cases subscribe to receive updates, my heartfelt thanks. I encourage you all to connect with me on Linkedin and also to follow me on Twitter.

Over the summer I’ve been working hard on my book, Clinton’s Grand Strategy: US Foreign Policy in the Post-Cold War World, now under contract with Bloomsbury. I’m scheduled to deliver the manuscript on March 31, which sounds a long way away, but I can tell you it is only 225 days from now!

I’ve also written 2 papers contrasting Barack Obama and Richard Nixon. One focuses on their campaigns to achieve the presidency, the other deals with their times as president. Both have been submitted to academic journals and I have had positive feedback to date. I look forward to updating you on publication details.

I have been invited to give a paper addressing President Obama’s foreign policy in regard to the Middle East and will be flying to Rome in October to deliver this.

I’m also pleased to be attending the BISA US Foreign Policy Group conference at the University of Warwick in September and anticipate submitting two further papers to conferences for eventual publication before the end of the year.

I’ve been working with a range of media organisations over the summer, including LBC97.3 and The Voice of Russia, as well as appearing regularly as the Agenda Setter on Monocle24. Links to these appearances can be found on my RADIO page.

I have also been working with Aljazeera America as it prepares to launch in the United States on August 20. The station has been engaged in real-time rehearsals and I have been working with them covering several stories dealing with US foreign policy and anticipate doing so following their launch next week.

So, all in all, a rather hectic, busy but extremely rewarding summer so far. I hope that my updates, both on this site and on Twitter, keep you informed, engaged and entertained. Feel free to get in touch and let me know what you think.