The talk will focus on how power and war were understood before and after the Russian full-scale invasion on Feb 24, 2022, and what we must learn from this.

About the speaker:

Professor Phillips O’Brien is the Chair of Strategic Studies and Head of the School of International Relations at the University of St Andrews.

He has published widely on issues of conflict, politics, war and strategy in the 20th and 21st centuries. Amongst his books are: ‘How the War was Won: Air-Sea Power and Allied Victory in World War II’ (Cambridge University Press, 2015) and ‘The Second Most Powerful Man in the World: The Life of Admiral William D. Leahy, FDR’s Chief of Staff’ (Penguin/Random House 2015).

He has also published multiple articles in major journals including Foreign Affairs, Diplomatic History, the Journal of Strategic Studies, and, Past and Present. In 2024 he will publish a new multi-archival study of grand-strategy making in World War II with Penguin/Random House, entitled: ‘The Strategists: How Churchill, Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini and Roosevelt were Made by and Made War’. He is now working on a book examining the War and Power in the modern world since 1815.

Professor O’Brien has been particularly active as an analyst and commentator during this most recent phase of the Russo-Ukraine War. He has worked with scholars and analysts in Ukraine, the rest of Europe and across the Atlantic to try and digest some of the lessons of the war and to understand why the pre-war analysis was so fundamentally flawed. His commentary has been published regularly in The Atlantic, The Times, The Spectator, The Telegraph and other major newspapers and journals, while he has made media appearances for outlets in more than 15 countries, including MSNBC, CNN, NPR, BBC, DWand L’Express.


Diplomacy, Security

Global Germany

Monday 10th June, 2024

Global Germany

Grand Strategy

Is the UK capable of grand strategy? with William James