Global politics are a process of negotiating perception and identity, within and between states. Beyond Defence looks at how this negotiation plays out in areas relevant to the formation of defence and security policy, particularly as they affect East Asia and North America. We also have secondary focuses on political economy and defence procurement strategies. Here you will find articles and shorter posts several times weekly promoting in one way or another a deeper understanding of issues in each of these areas. Anyone wishing to guest write or suggest topics of interest is welcome to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org or via the comments section. I am also happy to provide content to others.
Beyond Defence proceeds from two basic insights. The first is that conflict and co-existence have much more to do with the attitudes and perceptions the players bring to the game than any fixed set of national geopolitical interests or collisions of values. Thus, to improve relations requires clarifying perceptions and modifying attitudes. This blog will therefore spend considerable time providing insight into the political thinking and internal problems of various countries. This project will be heavily grounded in political economy perspectives.
The second of our basic insights is that strategic thought often takes on a life of its own in the minds of those creating it. Defence procurement particularly is an area tangled in many layers of strategic, political and financial complexity, in which governments are so easily convinced to spend excessive amounts of money on premises that either have little to do with national defence proper or can be shown in historical terms to be highly inadvisable. Thus, the second focus of this blog will be to examine the processes behind the waste of public money in defence projects and to examine more effective and cost-effective procurement strategies.