Mackinder Forum Virtual Seminar #54: Professor Brendan Simms, “Hitler and Geopolitics”

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On Saturday, April 2, 2022, Professor Brendan Simms addressed the Mackinder Forum on “Hitler and Geopolitics.”

ABSTRACT: We tend to think that we know everything that needs to be known about Hitler and that he has no relevance to today. Brendan Simms, author of a biography of Hitler and co-author more recently of Hitler’s American Gamble, shows that this is not the case. Far from being fixated on the Soviet Union and Bolshevism, as still widely believed, he was primarily concerned with the power of Anglo-America and Jewish international capitalism, as he understood it. These preoccupations very much part of the international scene today and many of the thought structures of Hitler’s time endure.

BIOGRAPHY: Brendan Simms is Professor of the History of European International Relations and Director of the Forum on Geopolitics at the University of Cambridge. He is also founder and President of the Henry Jackson Society, a London-based think tank devoted to the spread of democracy and human rights worldwide, and President of the Munich-based start-up think tank Project for Democratic Union, which seeks to establish a single Eurozone state on the lines of the Anglo-American unions. His publications, which have been translated into many languages, European and non-European, include Europe: The Struggle for Supremacy: 1453 to the Present Day (Penguin Press, 2013), Britain’s Europe: A Thousand Years of Conflict and Cooperation (Penguin Press, 2016) and (with Benjamin Zeeb) Europa am Abgrund. Pladoyer fuer die Vereinigten Staaten von Europe (C.H. Beck, 2016). Recently, Simms published Hitler: Only The World Was Enough (Penguin Press, 2019). His current concern is how to establish a new order for the continent after Brexit which recognizes both Britain’s power and her interest in the success of the European integration project.


Brendan Simms, “The Long Shadow of Hitler. Why Spectres of Nazism are Haunting the Present,” New Statesman, 30.8-5.9.2019.

Brendan Simms, “Against a ‘World of Enemies’: The Impact of the First World War on the Development of Hitler’s Ideology,” International Affairs 90: 2 (2014) 317–336.

Brendan Simms, Hitler: A Global Biography, Basic Books, 2019, chapter 17.