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The Edge

Paperback / ISBN-13: 9780349140513

Price: £9.99

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The size of western armed forces, their stocks of weaponry and their readiness for combat are declining. Meanwhile, growing nationalism is hampering international cooperation and fuelling conflict everywhere. The west’s will – as well as its capability – to shape the world is ebbing away.

Beset by economic woes, western countries are continuing the post-Cold War process of disarmament at the very moment that many believe a new Cold War is starting. NATO members have compared Vladimir Putin’s foreign policy to that of Adolf Hitler, newly empowered groups such as ISIS, not to mention some governments, are tearing up the rulebook of acceptable international behaviour, and the military prowess that the western world once regarded as its prerogative is being dwarfed by countries like India and China.

Tightly argued by Newsnight’s diplomatic and defence editor Mark Urban, THE EDGE is a sharp polemic that breaks new ground in examining the workings and consequences of these geo-political tectonics, and shows just how rapidly the balance of power has been upended.


An essential alarm bell about Western military weakness
In clear and concise prose, Urban lays out the way in which an entire continent has chosen the path of wholesale disarmament. It is impossible to read this authoritative book without feeling a deep sense of alarm, indeed of wonder, that our leaders have chosen to take such breathtaking risks . . . Urban delivers a compelling message
Daily Telegraph
My own professional experience tells me we should be listening very carefully to what he has to say
Richard Dearlove, former Head of MI6, Prospect
This slim, compelling study argues that the West is foolish to let its strategic muscle weaken
Sunday Telegraph
One of the best commentators on defence and diplomacy . . . always a reliably authoritative presence . . . Concise and cogently argued, Urban's book deserves a wide readership, as it makes an excellent starting point for a debate that should range way beyond the usual defence interest suspects
Michael Burleigh, The Times