Category Archives: Online Journal

“The Practice of Strategy: Two Case Studies from British History” by Kenton White

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A presentation to the Mackinder Forum Seminar #26, “Colin S. Gray: Master of Strategy and Geopolitics,” February 28, 2021 Introduction In his book Strategy and History Colin wrote, ‘Strategy is the bridge between military power and political purpose. Its state of repair is highly variable. Moreover … it is a bridge that… Read more »

The Arctic’s Emerging Geopolitics: Recommendations for the U.S. and its NATO Allies

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by Bert Chapman (Purdue University) ABSTRACT The Arctic region possesses significant oil and natural gas resources and is becoming an increasingly important arena of geopolitical contention.  Canada, China, Denmark, Norway, Russia, and the United States are acutely interested in gaining and maintaining access to its waters and natural resources.  Warming temperatures are… Read more »

Halford Mackinder: The Pivot and the Heartland by Brian Blouet

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Brian Blouet College of William and Mary Why does Mackinder evolve from the Pivot paper (1904) to the Heartland thesis (1919)?              In 1904 Mackinder identified four possible contenders for control of the core of Eurasia. The contenders were: the German empire, the Russian empire, China, and Japan. Mackinder added, should… Read more »

The “Decisive Storm” that Changed the Geopolitical Balance of the Red Sea by Shaul Shay

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The “Decisive Storm” that Changed the Geopolitical Balance of the Red Sea Shaul Shay A year has passed since the Saudi-led Arab coalition launched a war in Yemen after the legitimate government was overthrown by the Iranian backed Houthi rebels.  Saudi Arabia under a new king, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al… Read more »

China’s Nine-Dashed Map: Maritime Source of Geopolitical Tension

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By Bert Chapman Government Information, Political Science, & Economics Librarian/Professor of Library Science, Purdue University Libraries, West Lafayette, IN. Posted October 30, 2014. Abstract:   The South China Sea  (SCS) is becoming an increasingly contentious source of geopolitical tension due to its significance as an international trade route, possessor of… Read more »

The Ukrainian Crisis, Part IV: In Extremis

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James D. Hardy, Jr., PhD & Leonard J. Hochberg, PhD Diplomacy seeks to smooth the edges and round the angles of international relationships in the endless search for accommodation.  But the power asymmetry among states and the unbridgeable differences among cultures and religions often make accommodation difficult.  Beyond that diplomacy is complicated… Read more »

The Ukrainian Crisis, Part III: The Deal

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James D. Hardy, Jr., PhD and Leonard J. Hochberg, PhD In eastern Ukraine disorder bubbles on, violence expands, the subterranean power of militias and the Russian special forces grows, and the authority of the Ukrainian government evaporates.  This has been going on since March 2014, and will continue into May and… Read more »

The Ukrainian Crisis, Part II: Borderland

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James D. Hardy, Jr, PhD and Leonard J. Hochberg, PhD Ukraine is a new manifestation of an old eastern European political phenomenon, the multi-national state.  The old eastern European empires, Austria-Hungary, Tzarist Russia, the Ottoman Empire, and Imperial Germany, had formed before nationalism became the dominant means of self-identification in the… Read more »

The Ukrainian Crisis, Part I: Weighed in the Balance

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James D. Hardy, Jr., PhD and Leonard J. Hochberg, PhD When the Russians moved into the Crimea, pundits and politicians, including Hillary Clinton, commented that the reasons given by Vladimir Putin for the invasion were the same as those used by Adolph Hitler at Munich in 1938.  Ethnic Russians (Germans) were… Read more »

At Play in Mackinder’s World: A Cartographic Essay

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“As we consider this rapid review of the broader currents of history, does not a certain persistence of geographical relationship become evident? Is not the pivot region of the world’s politics that vast area of Euro-Asia which is inaccessible to ships, but in antiquity lay open to the horse-riding nomads,… Read more »