The United Kingdom

  • Paul Cornish

Abstract

Since 9/11, governments around the world have been struggling to describe and respond to a radically changing international security landscape, and to extrapolate lessons for domestic security and defence policy. This has not been a calm and detached intellectual exercise, but has been accompanied and influenced by a series of diplomatic shifts and other, often much noisier events: military operations in Afghanistan; improved relations between the United States and Russia; the enlargement of NATO; the opening up of the Central Asian republics, diplomatically and militarily; the non-compliance of North Korea with nuclear non-proliferation norms and practices; and Libya’s decision to declare and renounce its development of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons. At the time of writing (September 2004), disagreement over the US-1ed military action against Iraq in 2003 and its aftermath continued to divide the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and to undermine the United Nations Security Council. Governments have also renewed their interest in the old, cold-war problem of ‘civil defence’: how to prepare for a major attack on cities and facilities, and how to manage the consequences of such an attack for domestic society and government.

Keywords

Dust Europe Brittle Explosive Defend 

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Notes and references

  1. 1.
    On ‘catastrophic terrorism’ (deaths of 40,000 or more per event) see A. Carter, J. Deutch & P. Zelikow, ‘Catastrophic terrorism: tackling the new danger’, Foreign Affairs (November/December 1998). On ‘megaterrorism’ (deaths of 100,000 or more per event) see R. L. Garwin, ‘Are we safe yet?’ [Interview], IEEE Spectrum Online, January 2003, www.spectrum.ieee.org/WEBONLY/publicfeature/jan03/elude.html On ‘religious terrorism’ see M. Juergensmeyer, Terror in the Mind of God: the Global Rise of Religious Violence (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000).Google Scholar
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  3. 2.
    See W. Laqueur, The Age of Terrorism (London: Little, Brown & Co., 1987);Google Scholar
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    See House of Commons Defence Committee (HCDC), Defence and Security in the UK: Volume I (London: The Stationery Office, 24 July 2002), para. 60.Google Scholar
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    For an analysis of the threat to economic targets, see D. Claridge, ‘The vanguard of the new counter-terrorism’, Security Monitor (1/4, November 2002), 13–15.Google Scholar
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    UK Home Office, Dealing with Disaster (UK Resilience website, third edition, www.ukresilience.info/contingencies/dwd/introduction.htm downloaded 7 April 2003), chapter 1. See also HCDC, Defence and Security in the UK, paras 160–2.Google Scholar
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    House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts (PAC), Facing the Challenge: NHS Emergency Planning in England (London: House of Commons, HC 545, 16 April 2003), Minutes of Evidence, Appendix 1, Question 126 (i), Ev 17.Google Scholar
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    See K. Jeffery and P. Hennessy, States of Emergency: British Governments and Strike-breaking Since 1919 (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1983).Google Scholar
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    B. Durodié, ‘Perception and threat: why vulnerability-led responses will fail’, Security Monitor (1/4, November 2002), 17.Google Scholar
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    M. Prisk, Eternal Vigilance: the Defence of a Free Society (London: First Defence, January 2003).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Paul Cornish 2005

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  • Paul Cornish

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