Monthly Archives: May 2013

The World Island: Eurasian Geopolitics and the Fate of the West (Praeger Security International)

71zJ9Qm5LzL__SL1500_The 20th century was dominated by three visions of Eurasian geopolitics: ‘The World Island,’ ‘Containment,’ and ‘Prometheism.’ “The World Island: Eurasian Geopolitics and the Fate of the West” posits a fourth vision of Eurasian geopolitics: the 21st-century Geopolitical Strategy for Eurasia. Through an original and comprehensive analysis and synthesis of the ideas of Sir Halford Mackinder, George Kennan, and Jozef Pilsudski, this title reestablishes fundamental Western strategy objectives. It analyzes the state of and potential for Western engagement with China, Afghanistan, Turkey, Russia, and other Eurasian states and sets out what is at stake for the West in the Eurasian theater. Promoting a robust strategy to further and protect essential Western values, the author argues for the development of trade and energy links, coupled with the promotion of good governance and the facilitation of policy independence, integration, and Western-orientation among the Eurasian nations

The Landgrabbers: The New Fight Over Who Owns The Earth

91kfQt1QLSL1500What do City speculators, Gulf oil sheikhs, Chinese entrepreneurs, big-name financiers like George Soros and industry titans like Richard Branson buy when they go shopping? Land. Parcels the size of Wales are being snapped up across the plains of Africa, the paddy fields of Southeast Asia, the jungles of the Amazon and the prairies of Eastern Europe. Why? The money men will tell you that their investments will bring an end to world famine. But is this more about fat profits and food security for the few?

The race is on to grab the world’s most precious and irreplaceable resource. In this brilliant piece of investigative journalism Fred Pearce moves from boardroom and trading floor to goat-herder’s hut and flooded forest. The result is an eye-opening, extraordinarily important examination of the most profound ethical and economic issue in the world today.

The Power Surge: Energy, Opportunity, and the Battle for America’s Future

51DLPm0ysuLThe United States is in the throes of two unfolding energy revolutions, and partisans – convinced that only their side holds the key to American prosperity, security, and safety – are battling over which side should prevail.

In The Power Surge, Michael Levi takes readers inside these revolutions to find out what’s really happening—and which side is right. From the back roads of Ohio where old friends are warring over fracking, to the wilds of Colorado where speculators are chasing the holy grail of oil, he shows how oil and gas production, after decades in decline, are being propelled upward by new technologies and high prices, prompting predictions of an economic renaissance and energy independence within sight. He also visits California eco-startups developing game-changing technologies and Midwest manufacturers betting on a new energy future, showing how more efficient cars and trucks are increasingly dominating the road and costs for renewable energy have plummeted, leading many to herald a future that moves beyond fossil fuels and saves the planet.

Armed with on-the-ground lessons, and drawing on insights from economics, politics, international relations and climate science, The Power Surge takes on the big claims made by both sides in the fight over American energy, explaining why the purists are often wrong. Both revolutions in American energy, Levi argues, offer big opportunities for the country to strengthen its economy, bolster its security, and protect the environment. The Power Surge shows how to seize those opportunities with a new strategy that blends the best of old and new energy while avoiding the real dangers that each one poses.

Sweeping in scope, provocative yet thoughtful, The Power Surge is necessary reading for anyone who wants to understand the changes roiling American energy, and what they mean for our future.

Geopolitics: A Guide to the Issues (Contemporary Military, Strategic and Security Issues)

81kzL3BFyPL__SL1500_An important book on a topic that has been neglected for too long, “Geopolitics:
A Guide to the Issues” will provide readers with an enhanced understanding of
how geography influences personal, national, and international economics,
politics, and security. The work begins with the history of geopolitics from the
late 19th century to the present, then discusses the intellectual renaissance
the discipline is experiencing today due to the prevalence of international
security threats involving territorial, airborne, space-based, and waterborne
possession and acquisition. The book emphasizes current and emerging
international geopolitical trends, examining how the U.S. and other countries,
including Australia, Brazil, China, India, and Russia, are integrating
geopolitics into national security planning. It profiles international
geopolitical scholars and their work, and it analyzes emerging academic,
military, and governmental literature, including ‘gray’ literature and social
networking technologies, such as blogs and Twitter.

The Ashgate Research Companion to Critical Geopolitics (Ashgate Research Companions)

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Since the late 1980s, critical geopolitics has gone from being a radical critical perspective on the disciplines of political geography and international relations theory to becoming a recognised area of research in its own right. Influenced by poststructuralist concerns with the politics of representation, critical geopolitics considers the ways in which the use of particular discourses shape political practices. Initially critical geopolitics analysed the practical geopolitical language of the elites and intellectuals of statecraft. Subsequent iterations have considered the role that popular representations of the international political world play. As critical geopolitics has become a more established part of political geography it has attracted ever more critique: from feminists for its apparent blindness to the embodied effects of geopolitical praxis and from those who have been uncomfortable about its textual focus, while others have challenged critical geopolitics to address alternative, resistant forms of geopolitical practice. Again, critical geopolitics has been reworked to incorporate these challenges and the latest iterations have encompassed normative agendas, non-representational theory, emotional geographies and affect.It is against the vibrant backdrop of this intellectual development of critical geopolitics as a subdiscipline that this Companion is set. Bringing together leading researchers associated with the different forms of critical geopolitics, this volume produces an overview of its achievements, limitations, and areas of new and potential future development. The Companion is designed to serve as a key resource for an interdisciplinary group of scholars and practitioners interested in the spatiality of politics.

Geopolitics of Foreign Aid (Elgar Mini)

71bg68hExOL__SL1200_Foreign aid remains a crucial policy tool of donor countries, and many countries throughout the world have been or continue to be recipients of aid. In this two-volume set, Professor Milner and Professor Tingley bring together the key published articles from a variety of disciplines which explore and elucidate the geopolitics of foreign aid. The volumes investigate the motivations for giving aid, the politics surrounding aid for donors and recipients, the role of international institutions and military aid. With a comprehensive and authoritative introduction by the editors, this title will be a valuable reference for scholars and policy-makers in many fields who wish to better understand this significant feature of modern geopolitics

The International Politics of the Persian Gulf (Modern Intellectual and Political History of the Middle East)

51O7RYn0hTLIn this outstanding volume, the editor has assembled an all-star cast to provide an up-to-date assessment of the causes and consequences of the security challenges facing the Persian Gulf states. The text provides important historical and regional context, including the legacy of border disputes that continue to bedevil the region.”—Lawrence G. Potter, Deputy Directory, Gulf/2000 Project

For much of the contemporary history of the Middle East, the Persian Gulf has stood at the center of the region’s strategic significance. At the same time, the Gulf has been wracked by political instability and tension. As far back as the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Britain zeroed in on the Persian Gulf as a critical passageway to its crown jewel, India, and entered into protectorate agreements with local ruling families, thus bestowing on them international legitimacy and, eventually, the resources and support necessary to ascend to kingships. Today, the region is undergoing profound changes that range from rapid economic and infrastructural development to tumultuous social and cultural transformations. Far from eroding the area’s political significance, these changes have only accentuated rivalries and tensions and have brought to the forefront new challenges to international security and stability.

Together, the essays in this volume present a comprehensive, detailed, and accessible account of the international politics of the region. Focusing on the key factors that give the Persian Gulf its strategic significance, contributors look at the influence of vast deposits of oil and natural gas on international politics, the impact of the competing centers of power of Iran and Saudi Arabia, the nature of relationships among countries within the Persian Gulf, and the evolving interaction between Islam and politics. Throughout the collection, issues of internal and international security are shown to be central.

Drawing on the comprehensive knowledge and experience of experts in the region, The International Politics of the Persian Gulf shines a bright light on this area, offering insights and thoughtful analyses on the critical importance of this troubled region to global politics.

Geo-Politics of the Euro-Asia Energy Nexus: The European Union, Russia and Turkey (New Security Challenges)

511x93gK5DLSince its seminal origins in the European Coal and Steel Community, EU market
integration has been advancing in the field of energy as in the wider economy.
However, Russian gas cutoffs to Europe in 2006 and 2009 served as a stark
reminder that many member states remain vulnerable in terms of the physical
security of their foreign energy inflows, a glaring Achilles heel of the EU that
has risen to unprecedented prominence on its policymaking agenda. Turkey, an EU
candidate member, has been emerging as a new and potentially more stable and
independent ‘corridor’ for a wider diversity of pipeline-based hydrocarbon
exports to the European market. This book offers a freshly provocative look at
the nexus linking EU security, trans-Turkey energy supply routes to Europe and
Turkey’s EU membership negotiations, arguing that Europe’s collective energy
security prospects have become increasingly tied to Turkey’s progress towards
joining the EU.

Understanding Global Security

41O0DuPGInLFully revised to incorporate recent developments in world politics, the second edition of Understanding Global Security analyzes the variety of ways in which people’s lives are threatened and/or secured in contemporary global politics. The traditional focus of Security Studies texts – war, deterrence and terrorism – are analyzed alongside non-military security issues such as famine, crime, disease, disasters, environmental degredation and human rights abuses to provide a comprehensive survey of how and why people are killed in the contemporary world.

New features to this edition include:

  •  analysis of key international political events of recent years such as the War in Iraq, Hurricane Katrina and the Israeli incursion into Lebanon
  • recent developments in the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) and the ‘war against terror’
  • new data on deaths attributable to global warming and the contribution played by this in ‘securitizing’ the issue on the agendas of sceptical states
  • examinations of ‘lifestyle illnesses’, largely spread by the diffusion of Western culture, like smoking or diabetes
  • greater analysis of recent diplomatic and institutional developments in the area of security: the Human Security Network and the UN Commission on Human Security.

User friendly and easy to follow, this textbook is designed to make a complex subject accessible to all. Key features include:

  •  ‘top ten’ tables highlighting the most destructive events or forms of death in that area throughout history
  • boxed descriptions elaborating key concepts in the field of security and International Relations
  • ‘biographical boxes’ of key individuals who have shaped world events
  • further reading and websites at the end of each chapter guiding you towards the most up-to-date information on various topics
  • glossary of political terminology.

This highly acclaimed and popular academic text will continue to be essential reading for everyone interested in security.