(Original post by LondonLT)
How far has britains role in the world changed in the years 1951 to 2007?
- Reasons for decolonisation in the light of changing british & world circumstances
- The decision to join Europe: reasons for and against
- Britains so called special relationship with the USA
- Britains changing priorities post-Cold War
- How far Britains role has changed since 1951
Was Britain still punching above her weight in terms of foreign affairs above 1951?
How important had thatcher and blair been in creating a new image of Britain abroad and has it been successful?
How well had Britain adjusted to changing circumstances between 1951-2007?
Some key areas:
***1951-1964: a time of adjustment and search for a new role***
- britain was already in retreat from empire but a public brought up on imperial illusions found realism difficult to accept. would a commonwealth be an acceptable substitute?
- britain misunderstood the speed of independence and its ramifications
- suez was a defining moment and showed Britains dependence on the USA
- britain economically was overstretched- defence spending and independence nuclear deterrent
- links with the USA seemed more relevant than joining the European movement
- By 1964 the wind of change was blowing for britain and there had been some successes in providing independence
***1964-1975: a change in direct and antagonism with the USA***
- the decision to join Europe had an impact on relations with the USA, especially in light of Vietnam
- Wilson's relations with rhodesia and ramifications for foreign policy
- Britains need to cut military commitments and the withdrawl from "east of suez" after the 1967 devaluation crisis
- by 1975 britain focus seemed to be Europe and the medittaranean and a form of realism was finally taking place
- heaths focus on Europe caused a rift in relations with the USA
***1975-1990: a time of hubris***
- the resolution of the issue of rhodesia but continued controversy with the commonwealth over south africa and apartheid
- the falklands- a remnant of empire, a second Suez or a chance to make MT?
- post Falklands, a resurgence in nationalism and pride
_ europe was the central focus for thatcher yet it caused immense problems within europe & the british govt
- thatcher as cold war warrior. her admiration for the atlantic alliance and reagan. her contribution to the end of the cold war.
***1990-2007: a chance to forge new relationships***
- Britain continued dialogue with, and ambialence towards, europe and the promotion of an enlarged europe
- blairs attempts to bridge the European USA divide
- blairs involvement with NATO and its ramifications in the Balkansm Iraq and Afgha: principled or opportunistic?
- how far had blair damaged britains reputation in the world by 2007?