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Title: British foreign and defence policy as a background to Maltese affairs 1945-1964
Authors: Vella, Martin (2001)
Keywords: Military policy
International relations
Malta -- Politics and government
Great Britain -- Politics and government
Issue Date: 2001
Citation: Vella, M. (2001). British foreign and defence policy as a background to Maltese affairs 1945-1964 (Master’s dissertation).
Abstract: This thesis is primarily a study of post-war British foreign and defence policies and about how their decline brought down With it British global naval power, particularly in the Mediterranean. Britain's post-war economy and finance went through terrible fluctuations that weakened further her capacity to act independently in international affairs like she used to do in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. The intensification of the Cold War in the late 1940s led Britain to seek and strengthen her partnership with the United States of America. However, this transatlantic alliance was the genesis and eventually the consolidation first of America's hegemony over Western Europe and consequently the rise of her maritime supremacy in the Mediterranean, a presence represented by NATO and the Sixth Fleet. The dawning of the Superpowers, therefore, was one main reason why Britain was incapable to keep up the economic and financial burdens as expected from a truly world power. In her bid to strengthen her defence muscles, a basic factor that would give credibility to her independent foreign affairs policies and interests in the eyes of both Superpowers and other powers, she tried to reorganise her colonial empire. At the same time that she was doing so, however, she granted India, Pakistan, Ceylon, and Burma independence. These were contradictions that demonstrated how much fragile Britain was in comparison to the pre-1939 epoch. Added to Britain's decline in her international status was the technological factor. In 1952 Britain became an atomic power, in the wake of the Korean War. World War II showed that the days of the battleship, as the backbone of Fleet power, were over. British maritime supremacy had been on the wane since the late nineteenth century, as Mahan had well observed. But the strategic use of air power, particularly of the bomber, combined with the atomic, later on nuclear, deterrent the entire concept of warfare was but on unprecedented scale of awe inspiring massive destruction. Technology had changed drastically the border-limits of devastation wrath by global war. No country, both physically and morally, was immune from this cataclysmic threat.
Description: M.A.HISTORY
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacArt - 1999-2010
Dissertations - FacArtHis - 1967-2010

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