British foreign relations stand at a crossroads. A series of disastrous wars have undermined popular support for the exertion of British military power, while Britain’s choice of international allies – from Donald Trump to the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia – increasingly inspires deep unease and discomfort.
The Corbyn moment has focused overwhelmingly on domestic economic policy. But any incoming Labour government would assume control of one of the most powerful states in the world. This entails a significant set of responsibilities, which our movement needs to fully engage with and prepare for. Our collective failure to give adequate focus to the war in Yemen since 2015 suggests that there is much work to do on this front.
This session will equip participants to engage more closely with foreign policy issues. It will provide historical context, and break down the distinction between the “domestic” and the “foreign” to show the deep interconnectedness between the two spheres. It will challenge elite framings of UK foreign policy discourse, particularly the assumption that the British state is a benign actor in the world.
Dr David Wearing is a Teaching Fellow in International Relations at Royal Holloway, University of London, expert on UK foreign relations in the Middle East, and author of “AngloArabia: Why Gulf Wealth Matters To Britain”.