2021 Abstracts Stage 2

Kantian Perspectives on the use of Government Powers in Overseas Counter-terrorism operations

The aim of this project is to investigate the current counter terrorism dilemma concerning the targeted killing, using drone strikes, on British terrorists overseas. It will be explored through a Kantian perspective and criticised, ultimately arguing against Kant’s theories. The primary case study used throughout the project is on the 2015 Reyaard Khan killing, ordered by PM at the time, David Cameron. There are four subsections within the dilemma to be explored: firstly, whether it is morally sound to kill at all, then assuming for the purpose of the essay that it is, whether it is ok to do so without a fair trial. The project will also investigate whether the British Government should be killing British citizens overseas when the death penalty is illegal in the UK, and if they are not, should they be passing on intelligence to the US for the Americans to send the drones instead?

2013 Abstracts Stage 2

Can American Foreign Policy Between 1945 and 1989 Be Explained? Understanding the Role of Philosophy in International Relations Theory

This paper locates the origins of international relations theory in the philosophical tradition.

By exploring these foundations I develop a complex understanding of the content, qualities and development of IR theory.

This enquiry is designed in order to demonstrate the following claim: that in order for philosophy to remain a valuable discipline it must adapt.

Over the course of the paper a number of thinkers are referenced: Hobbes, Kant and Hume are primary focuses.

2008 Abstracts Stage 3

The War on Terrorism

This project investigates the motivations behind different terrorist attacks. From what drives them to become involved in terrorism to the different positions that are open to them and finally the effectiveness of their role and the influence of society’s perception. I decided to title my project “The War on Terrorism”. By my title I do not mean the campaign that was initiated by America and joined by other countries throughout the world to ‘curb the spread of terrorism’. My project will discuss the reasons why this campaign will not work. This War on Terrorism was authorized by the United States Congress under the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists and was passed on the 18th of September 2001 after the attacks on America on 9/11. The object I plan to focus on is a scene from the film ‘The Kingdom’. The reason for this is because it is a film about terrorism, which I think compliments the objective I am trying to prove. The reason why I chose this is film is because at the start of the film when the terrorist bomb goes off in the housing compound, Agent Fleury whispers in one of his associate’s ears in comfort something we as the audience cannot hear. Then in one of the latest scenes when the leader of the terrorist group is shot and is dying he whispers to a young girl in comfort something that again we as the audience can’t hear. Then in the final scene each person reveals what was said to them. It was, “Don’t worry, we’ll kill them all.” This for me is very significant because it showed that even though the American agent was claiming to be bringing justice to the terrorists he was actually just looking to kill them all for killing his comrades. Both sides had the same objective, they both wanted to kill. How will this ever stop terrorism? My parallel territory was the Cold War as I believe no other event in history has affected world politics as the same way the Cold War did in the mid 1940’s till the early 1990’s. Terrorism has taken its place in modern day politics. The concepts I identified throughout my project were power, identity and the loss of identity. I believe America’s waging of war on terror was just an assertion of power and way in which to reinsert them as the main hegemonic power throughout the world. A philosophers whose work I have used is Ted Honderich, especially his work terrorism for Humanity which raises many difficult questions that are unavoidable at this moment in time as the war on terror rages. Questions related to the morality of terrorism and the use of political violence. In this work Honderich’s arguments for and against terrorism are directed towards the goal of the Principle of humanity. The questions which are raised throughout run along the lines of when is terrorism right, if ever? And when is it wrong? And what are the reasons for it being wrong? The main reason I chose this philosopher to focus on is because throughout this work he implores us to open our minds and explore political philosophy but he reminds us that even though we are opening our minds to see the bigger picture it does not mean we have to lose our convictions. Other philosophers I chose to look at are Castell and his work on resistance and identity, Habermas’s philosophy at the time of terror and Baudrillard and his fatalist theory,

2007 Abstracts Stage 3

Leo Strauss: a Political God and his Disciples?!

In my project I will be examining how the Bush Administration has been influenced by the work of Leo Strauss and how this has affected their rule, both in relation to the use of civil religion in America and their foreign policy. Following the War on Terror, many scholars and journalists have been quick to announce that the Bush Administration has been infiltrated by ‘Straussians’ who are using Straus’s work to support their use of Noble Lies. However, it is necessary to assess whether these politicians are distorting the meaning of Straus’s work in order to support their own agendas. To support the main arguments in my project, I will be looking at a variety of works by Strauss and the documentary “The Power of Nightmares” by Adam Curtis. Some of the concepts being explored include; Civil religion, War, and Myths/Noble Lies.