Advertisement

The Influence of the British Secretariat Tradition on Twentieth-Century International Peace-Keeping

  • Robert S. Jordan
Part of the St Antony's book series

Abstract

The evolution of one of the most effective means of achieving some measure of multinational co-ordination and possible amelioration of international political rivalries took place as a consequence of the great colonial — or imperial — expansion of Great Britain into the non-European world. One result of this expansion was the Boer War in South Africa. In the wake of the generally poor performance of Britain in this war, and because of the growing awareness in London that the Empire needed more systematic overseeing, a means of co-ordinating Britain’s military affairs was introduced, called the secretariat method. In fact, stretching even from the Seven Years’ War, as Peter Nailor points out, a new concept of imperial security was slowly evolving: ‘The particular aspect of Imperial defense that pervades and illuminates the British experience is the cooperation (or lack of it) between the Imperial power and its self-governing possessions.’1 More to the point of this chapter, Nailor observes:

… British Imperial defense is the story of a relationship that in some respects is more like that of an alliance than of central and dominant authority imposing and executing a series of objectives: a relationship in which persuasion and example — and indecision — have as much place as economic and political uncertainty or agreed strategic perspectives.2

Keywords

Prime Minister Security Council North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Grand Strategy Privy Council 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

  1. 1.
    Peter Nailor, ‘Britain and the Imperial Staff’, Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr and Uri Ra’aman (eds), National Security Policy: The Decision-Making Process (Hamden, CT., 1984) pp. 3–4.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    Franklyn A. Johnson, Defence by Committee: The British Committee of Imperial Defence, 1885–1959 (London, 1960) p. 13.Google Scholar
  3. For Hankey’s view of this book, see Stephen Roskill, Hankey, Man of Secrets, vol. I, 1877–1918 (London, 1970) pp. 138–42.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    For a brief review of the evolution of the CID Secretariat, and the later career of one of Hankey’s trusted lieutenants, Sir Hastings Ismay (later Lord Ismay), see Robert S. Jordan, The NATO International Staff I Secretariat, 1952–1957: A Study in International Administration (London, 1967) especially Part I. Sir Charles Ottley became unpopular because, rather than remain a passive secretary who synthesised other people’s thinking, he preferred to advance his own ideas as well (interview of Robert Jordan with Lord Ismay, 28 May 1959).Google Scholar
  5. 6.
    Lord Hankey, The Supreme Command 1914–1918, vol. I (London, 1961) p. 52.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    (Ibid.) See also John Gooch, ‘The Army and Empire’, in his The Plans of War (London, 1974) Ch. 2.Google Scholar
  7. 10.
    The Rt. Hon. L. S. Amery, CH, My Political Life, VII: War and Peace 1914–7929 (London, 1953) p. 172.Google Scholar
  8. 11.
    Lord Riddell, Lord Riddell’s Intimate Diary of the Peace Conference and After, 1918–1923 (New York, 1934) p. 69.Google Scholar
  9. 17.
    John P. Mackintosh, The British Cabinet (London, 1962) p. 272n.Google Scholar
  10. 20.
    Ministry of Reconstruction, Report of the Machinery of Government Committee (London, 1918) p. 6.Google Scholar
  11. Lord Hankey, Diplomacy by Conference: Studies in Public Affairs 1920–1946 (London, 1946) p. 72.Google Scholar
  12. 21.
    George Rublee, ‘Inter-Allied Machinery in War-Time’, The League of Nations Starts: An Outline by Its Organizers (London, 1920) pp. 30–1.Google Scholar
  13. 22.
    Harold Nicolson, Peacemaking 1919 (New York, 1965) p. 110.Google Scholar
  14. 27.
    Article in The World Today, March 1924, as quoted in C. Howard-Ellis, The Origin, Structure and Working of the League of Nations (London, 1928) p. 171.Google Scholar
  15. 30.
    Leon Gordenker, The UN Secretary-General and the Maintenance of Peace (New York, 1967) p. 5.Google Scholar
  16. 32.
    Egon F. Ranshofen-Wertheimer, The International Secretariat (Washington, 1945) p. 49.Google Scholar
  17. 36.
    Trygve Lie, In the Cause of Peace (New York, 1954) p. 41.Google Scholar
  18. 39.
    Quoted in John Ehrman, Grand Strategy (London, 1956) VI, p. 322.Google Scholar
  19. 40.
    Winston Churchill, The Second World War (London, 1950) II, p. 16.Google Scholar
  20. 41.
    Winston S. Churchill, The War Speeches of the Rt. Hon. Winston S. Churchill, compiler Charles Eade (London, 1952) II, p. 217.Google Scholar
  21. 45.
    S. E. Morison, in American Contributions to the Strategy of World War II (London, 1958) did not mention Lord Ismay in his discussion of the British war planning system. This is unfortunate.Google Scholar
  22. 46.
    J. R. M. Butler, Grand Strategy (London, 1957) II, p. 250.Google Scholar
  23. 47.
    Stephen S. Schwebel, The Secretary-General of the United Nations (Cambridge, 1952) p. 18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 52.
    See Robert S. Jordan (ed.), Dag Hammarskjöld Revisited: The U.N. Secretary-General As A Force in World Politics (Durham, NC, 1983).Google Scholar
  25. 54.
    (Interview with Ismay, 28 May 1959; The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (Paris, 1957) pp. 38–9.)Google Scholar
  26. 65.
    (Edmund Taylor, Washington Post, 15 April 1956.)Google Scholar
  27. 66.
    As related by C. L. Sulzberger, New York Times, 22 May 1957.Google Scholar
  28. 67.
    The Times, 5 June 1957. The Hankey discussion in this chapter is based partly on my chapter in Robert S. Jordan (ed.), International Administration: Its Evolution and Contemporary Applications (London and New York, 1971).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© John B. Hattendorf and Robert S. Jordan 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert S. Jordan

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations