From Global Empire to Superpower British Colonial Experience and Strategic Thought in the U.S. after 1945


Recent events are characterized by a prompt growth in civil conflicts: from disorder for racial reasons to international collisions and civil wars of a religious, ethnic and territorial character. These circumstances even more often return the academic and expert communities to the history of the formation and develop- ment of a policy to ensure internal security. At the same time London and Washington within «humanitar- ian interventions» of the end of the 20th, the beginning of the 21st centuries make active and regular attempts to move to others soil (Afghanistan and Iraq are the most indicative examples) their own experi- ence of providing internal security. Understanding and forecasting the prospects of this transfer of an alien model of forming a system of internal security demands a deep analysis not only of its main components, but also of its ideo-logical sources.

The special role of law enforcement agencies and departments (intelligence, counterintelligence, police, army),  the inconsistent choice between the principles of democracy and safety require-ments (including the extrajudicial restrictions of the rights of the foreign and own citizens authorized by the authorities on the territory of Great Britain and the USA) are still valid nowadays, allowing to say that the methods of providing internal security developed in the colonial past of Great Britain are still considered valid by a considerable part of the expert community of the USA (though aren't always effective in practice), and studying them has not only an academic, but also a political value.

In the light of the recently declassified documents on the activity of security services of Great Britain and the USA after World War II, in countries of «the third world» and also the modern international contradic- tions connected with attempts to introduce the model of providing internal security created on the basis of colonial experience of Great Britain to various countries of the modern world, there is a need to study this policy, and the development of structures, forms and methods of providing internal security in Great Britain and the USA as the universal recipe for «counterinsurgency operations» and «operations of stabi- lization». The present article represents the analysis of this process in the conditions of «Cold war» and

«War on terror» at the level of strategic thinking as one of the most characteristic and essential aspects of transition from an era of global colonial empires to an era of nuclear superpowers.


empire; superpower; strategy; counterinsurgency; Great Britain; USA.

Authors: Stanislav Malkin

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