Magazine
Latest Issue

Grand strategy

With weapons of mass destruction in private hands, will American power and European co-operation give way to a global police state?

By Robert Cooper   December 2002

Good laws and good armies are the foundation of the state, said Machiavelli. The Shield of Achilles (Allen Lane), the book by American grand strategist Philip Bobbitt, is about just that: armies, laws and the state. To put it another way, this book is about legitimacy. The great wars around which the argument is structured were fought about different ideas of legitimacy; and the great peace settlements that ended them were attempts to embody the new legitimacy that emerged with victory.

Armies are vital to legitimacy. The first duty of the state is to protect its citizens from foreign attack.…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect