Thinking Ahead: David Cameron, the Henry Jackson Society and British Neo-conservatism

Klaus Dodds, Stuart Elden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Conservative party under David Cameron's leadership has embarked on a series of foreign policy initiatives which appear to revise the political right's traditional reluctance to interfere in third-party conflicts with no obvious British interest. This article looks at whether this shift is substantial through an examination of Cameron's and William Hague's foreign policy pronouncements. Its particular focus is to discuss whether the Henry Jackson Society, a group of academics, parliamentarians and journalists, is exercising any influence over Conservative party foreign policy discussion. Finally, we consider how critics including individuals associated with the Henry Jackson Society have evaluated Cameron's and Hague's tentative interventionist convictions. It is suggested that the notion that idealism in foreign policy has to be conditioned by realism is actually a reworking of Blair's foreign policy, especially when applied to overseas intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)347-363
Number of pages16
JournalBritish Journal of Politics and International Relations
Issue number3
Early online date9 Apr 2008
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2008


  • UK foreign policy
  • Henry Jackson
  • Conservative Party
  • Geopolitics

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