Iran at the precipice

Iran at the precipice

By Jonathan Power July 24, 2019 There’s never been a full-scale war between two nuclear-armed states. If Iran one day did cross the nuclear threshold the same deterrence will apply. No one rational would want to provoke their own incineration. Columbia University professor, Kenneth Waltz, the distinguished theorist on the conduct of war, wrote in […]

Netanyahu’s dead end

Netanyahu’s dead end

By Jonathan Power July 17, 2019 A sword of Damocles hangs over the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. The sword of Netanyahu hangs over Palestine- and Israel. Which will fall first? A court case approaches. A new election in September approaches. Netanyahu is being accused of a serious crime of corruption. He is fighting not […]

Putin’s attack on the “liberal idea”

Putin’s attack on the “liberal idea”

By Jonathan Power July 9, 2019 The attack on “the liberal idea” by Vladimir Putin in his long interview in the Financial Times at the end of June is still vibrating in my mind. First, I’d like to know if the Russian people share his views on immigration. In Britain and the US, despite the […]

Putin versus the People

Putin versus the People

By Jonathan Power July 2, 2019 Here’s a joke, borrowed from a Russian website. The Russians always have had a dry humour. “Trump, Merkel, May and Macon – Putin is heartily sick of them all. They keep calling and calling, so he switches his phone to voicemail. His message says; “Hello, you have called Russian […]

Who is president Xi of China?

Who is president Xi of China?

By Jonathan Power June 25, 2019 Xi Jinping, president of China, remains an enigma. You watched him on television this past weekend reviewing the dancing in Pyongyang in the company of Kim Jong-un and his face is near to expressionless when in repose. He doesn’t stand like an arrogant man and we recall that time […]

The US makes bad mistakes in the Persian Gulf

The US makes bad mistakes in the Persian Gulf

By Jonathan Power June 19, 2019 In 1980 in his State of the Union address President Jimmy Carter said: “Any attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States and such an assault will be repelled by any […]

Russia is bitter about the West

Russia is bitter about the West

By Jonathan Power June 11, 2019 When I was in Moscow three weeks ago, I was briefing myself for an interview with the Soviet Union’s last president, Mikhail Gorbachev. As it happened he had to cancel it as he went into hospital for tests. One of the American academics I always read is Gordon Hahn, […]

To St Petersburg with love

To St Petersburg with love

By Jonathan Power June 4, 2019 I’m on the 250 km/hour train hurtling from Moscow to St Petersburg when it suddenly clicks in my mind. My apologies for being so stupid, but despite regular trips to Russia over many years I have only suddenly got it – I too have been brainwashed about Russia by […]

Is Brexit coming or going?

Is Brexit coming or going?

By Jonathan Power May 29, 2019 Brexit grabs the attention of much of the world, not least because Britain once had an Empire and ruled a great part of the world’s peoples. And it’s the caretaker of the English language, the Empire’s most important legacy. Add to that the BBC, the world’s favourite and most […]

The Security Council must stop the US going to war with Iran

The Security Council must stop the US going to war with Iran

By Jonathan Power May 22, 2019 Amnesty International reported this week that an Iranian lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, has been sentenced to 38 years in jail and 148 lashes. She has dedicated her life to defending women accused of removing their hijabs in public. The persecution of human rights dissidents in Iran appears to be getting […]