Military experts, not political amateurs, should decide whether we go to war

Rob Johnson

Moderator: Dr Robert Johnson

Robert Johnson is Departmental Lecturer in the History of War in the Faculty of History and a member (Deputy Director) of the Changing Character of War programme at the University.

Hew Strachan

Proposer: Professor Hew Strachan

Hew Strachan is the Chichele Professor of the History of War and a Fellow of All Souls. He is the Director of the Changing Character of War programme at the University.

Vernon Bogdanor

Opposer: Professor Vernon Bogdanor

Vernon Bogdanor CBE is Professor of Politics and Government in the Department of Politics and International Relations. He is a Fellow of Brasenose College, an Honorary Fellow of The Queen's College, and a Fellow of the British Academy.

Opening statements - 28 Jan 10

  • Dr Robert Johnson

    Against the backdrop of the Iraq Enquiry, the question of who decides that the nation... read more

  • Professor Hew Strachan

    Hew Strachan

    Britain's wars between 1982 and 2003 were swift and much more effective than mili... read more

  • Professor Vernon Bogdanor

    Vernon Bogdanor

    One good definition of democracy is that it is government by amateurs. Government is ... read more

Update 1

  • 04 Feb 10
    Professor Hew Strachan

    Hew Strachan

    Vernon Bogdanor and I do not disagree about the need for ultimate political responsib... read more

  • 08 Feb 10
    Professor Vernon Bogdanor

    Vernon Bogdanor

    We are debating the issue of whether military experts, not political amateurs should ... read more

Update 2

  • 11 Feb 10
    Professor Hew Strachan

    Hew Strachan

    The fact that little divides my views from those of Professor Bogdanor might suggest ... read more

  • 15 Feb 10
    Professor Vernon Bogdanor

    Vernon Bogdanor

    Little divides me from Professor Strachan, but that little is of some importance.We a... read more

Closing statements - 18 Feb 10

  • Professor Hew Strachan

    Hew Strachan

    First of all, let's get one canard out of the way.  The issue of political c... read more

  • Professor Vernon Bogdanor

    Vernon Bogdanor

    This seems to me one of those rare debates in which the very process of debate has en... read more

  • Dr Robert Johnson

    This debate has illustrated the value attached to constitutional arrangements for the... read more

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military expert. Credit: Toby Whiting, PAD
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