- Format: Paperback
- ISBN: 978-1-5261-0901-9
- Pages: 376
- Publisher: Manchester University Press
- Price: £25.00
- Published Date: October 2016
- BIC Category: European history, POLITICAL SCIENCE / General, Politics & government, International relations, United Kingdom, Great Britain, Humanities / British & Irish history, HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain, POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / General, Society & social sciences / International relations, Society & social sciences / Politics & government
Recent votes in the House of Commons on British military intervention have put foreign policy at the heart of public consciousness. This book examines fifty years and nine premierships - from Harold Wilson to David Cameron - to offer a unique account of the growing role of the prime minister in foreign policy making.
The prime minister now spends more time on foreign policy than at any previous period outside war, but excepting crises the public and MPs themselves remain relatively ill-informed on the subject. Written by a senior parliamentary researcher and based on first-hand interviews with former foreign secretaries, Cabinet ministers, senior civil servants, party officials, military chiefs and diplomats, this book provides an insider account of votes on military intervention in Syria, and raises questions around the vetting of those who seek the office of prime minister and the educating of the electorate.
'As someone who worked at close quarters for five British Foreign Secretaries and three Prime Ministers, I had a worm's eye view of the growing foreign policy role of the British Premier. Sam Goodman's account is detailed, forensic and subtle. For this is not a straightforward story and the interplay between Prime Minister and Foreign Secretary has been shaped by personality as well as by a political dynamic. Goodman understands, and he tells a fascinating story with authority and compelling clarity. Anyone looking for a concise, accurate and interesting account of the big events and challenges in British foreign policy over the last half century will enjoy this book and want to keep it as an invaluable source of fact and insight.'
'Sam Goodman's book gives an excellent overview of the main foreign policy challenges faced by nine British Prime Ministers over the last 50 years and how they dealt with them. It draws richly on first-hand accounts, is very well-written and will be a valuable source of reference for politicians and students alike.'
Sam Goodman is a Senior Parliamentary Researcher and has worked with Members of the House of Commons, the Foreign Affairs Select Committee and the US House of Representatives
Foreword by the Rt Hon. Lord Owen
1. Harold Wilson, 1964-70
2. Ted Heath, 1970-74
3. Harold Wilson, 1974-76
4. James Callaghan, 1976-79
5. Margaret Thatcher, 1979-90
6. John Major, 1990-97
7. Tony Blair, 1997-2007
8. Gordon Brown, 2007-10
9. David Cameron, 2010-15