Browsing Category International

NATO and the Future of Europe–US Relations after Afghanistan

Lord David Owen reflects on the history and future of Europe–US relations in an essay for the RUSI Journal, 2022 (Royal United Services Institute, London)

“We are living in a very strange and worrying political world, with the rise in military might of President Vladimir Putin’s Russia and President Xi Jinping’s China being set against internal criticism of NATO within Europe, and Europe’s falling out with the US over Afghanistan.


Remember Kissinger’s advice to the Ukrainians

Lord Owen and other distinguished observers write to the UK’s Financial Times, 23 February 2022

“…..Vladimir Putin’s demand that Ukraine be barred from Nato is the latest iteration of a Russian policy stretching back to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.”

“In his article ‘The empire returns’ (The Weekend Essay, Life & Arts, January 28) Serhii Plokhy correctly says that president Vladimir Putin’s demand that Ukraine be barred


Nato must meet Russian aggression with determination – and meaningful sanctions

Lord Owen writing in the UK-based PoliticsHome ‘HouseNews’, 17 February 2022.

“Vladimir Putin’s encirclement of Ukraine has re-established the unity of NATO and brought the people of Ukraine far closer than before….. (NATO) has never been neutral and wee will not be neutral about any invasion of Ukraine.”

Read the full article here.

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China’s latest acts of oppression must act as a wake-up call

Lord Owen writes in The Times, 26 November 2020

Read the full article here

The third breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration by the Chinese Communist Party should serve as a wake-up call not just to Britain but to her allies as well.

The pace at which President Xi has dismantled Hong Kong’s democracy through the purging of pro-democracy and the recent arrests of former pro-democracy lawmakers only points to


Britain Must Step Up to the Global Stage to Protect Hong Kong

“China’s disregard for international law under Xi presents a shared challenge.”

Lord Owen, writing in the online ForeignPolicy.com magazine, June 23, 2020, 4:30 PM

Read the original here: Britain Must Step Up on HK

The 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration was the brainchild of two formidable political leaders, China’s Deng Xiaoping and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

Since the handover of Hong Kong in 1997, the international treaty has generally worked …


Lord Owen speaks on the Middle East crisis

Lord Owen, speaking in the House of Lords Queen’s Speech Debate, Tuesday 7 January 2020.

My Lords, as we talk in this Chamber, the Middle East is once again a powder keg of extreme danger…. We have to ask ourselves now what mechanisms we have for restarting (a) dialogue; it has not restarted and shows no real sign of restarting…. (The) UN Secretary-General and the UN Security Council have a


…For a post-Brexit Britain the challenge is abundantly clear. It is to make an urgent decision – I am surprised it has not already been made by this Government – to increase our defence spending from 2% to, at the very least, 2.5% and as soon as possible up to 3%.

Lord Owen speaking in the House Of Lords debate on the National Security situation, Thursday 19 April 2018

The full text is here: 19.4.18HL

“There are three dangerous potential military crises on the international agenda: North Korean nuclear weapons; eastern Europe, focused on Ukraine; and the Middle East, focused on Syria. Any or all of these could bubble over into serious military conflict.

“… Churchill did not say that jaw-jaw …


“…There is a group in Whitehall who are not reconciled to Brexit, who are pushing hard for decisions to be taken in … areas of defence policy on an absurdly short timescale. Post Brexit defence policies will take time to evolve and a lot of consultation and the UK military voice needs to be heard loud and clear.”

Speech by The Rt Hon Lord Owen to the Henry Jackson Society’s British Foreign Policy After Brexit’ event, London 19 April 2018

Full text here: 19.4.18HenryJackson

“There will either be war in the Middle East over Syria and possible increased military activity in Ukraine, or there will be a meeting between President Trump and President Putin trying to resolve these two potential conflicts. …It is a simple fact …