Constraints on UK World Power Projection and Foreign Policy in the New World Order: the Maritime Dimension

  • Michael Clarke


`Power projection’ is back in fashion as the stability of the international order is threatened now more by the weakness of states than by their strength. The desire and ability to project power for policing, crisis management, conflict prevention and to obtain influence in the world order reflects a world freed from the imperatives of the Cold War and the ideological competition that it entailed. But the freedom of individual states to project power is now paradoxically constrained by the structure of international interdependence that finally finished off the Cold War and which has replaced it as the dominant trend in world politics. It is not fear of our adversaries or respect for the rules of a dangerous bipolar game that now constrains the major states from projecting their power so much as an awareness of how difficult it is, these days, to make such projected power effective in achieving our aims. This is particularly so for the United Kingdom, a state that has aspirations to a world role, a maritime and expeditionary tradition and the luxury now of a relatively stable international environment in which to operate.


Foreign Policy Monetary Union Power Projection External Policy Conflict Prevention 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1999

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  • Michael Clarke

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