What role do diplomats and diplomacy play in the 21st century?
That’s the topic that the BBC Radio 3 discussion programme Night Waves: Undercurrents looked at on 9 November 2005.
E3G Chief Executive John Ashton was one of the panelists.
This week the president of China is in Britain for a 3 day visit. Open mention – at least – of the execution of 10,000 of its citizens last year is off the diplomatic agenda. So what role do diplomats have in the 21st century? Where are the boundaries between human rights and national interests? Or are diplomats just the eyes and ears of a state with no power or influence?
As former ambassador Sir Christopher Meyer’s memoirs DC Confidential are serialised this week- showing his frustrations at not being able to influence Tony Blair to take more of a powerful stance over the invasion of Iraq with President Bush and Blair, tonight’s Night Waves: Undercurrents Phillip Dodd asks if in the 21st century diplomats have less power in international relations they had in the past.
Joining him will be:
Richard Aldrich – Professor of International Relations and Politics who knows about the history of diplomacy;
PJ O Rourke – the fearless master of gonzo journalism who is far from diplomatic;
Margaret Anstee – who worked for the United Nations in international diplomacy in some of the most dangerous countries in the world; and
John Ashton – a former diplomat who now runs an NGO in order to change international policies.