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World Crisis


Wednesday 23 March 2011
SOAS Vernon Square Campus, Room V122
5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London Development Studies’ Neoliberalism, Globalisation, and States Research Cluster presents

A Clash of Principals and Interests: Canada’s role in the latest inning of the Great Game – the Global War on Terror.

Michael Skinner

To justify Canada’s role in the Global War on Terror, Canadian politicians and opinion-makers framed this world war’s first battlefront in Afghanistan in three ways: 1) as a struggle of principal to spread democracy and universal human rights; 2) as a necessary show of support for Canada’s closest ally and largest trading partner, the United States; and 3) as part of a necessary strategy to ensure national and global security. However, economic and geopolitical interests outweigh concerns for liberating Afghans or securing global peace. Despite failing to liberate Afghans or provide greater security, the Global War on Terror is liberating capital, securing investors, and fulfilling many of the strategic objectives outlined in both the US National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy. In recent decades, Canadian foreign policy interests have generally converged with those of the United States within an emerging empire of capital. Aggressively pursuing these mutual interests may exacerbate conflict in Afghanistan, the Greater Central Asian region, and around the globe.

Michael Skinner Biography:

Michael Skinner is a Researcher at the York Centre for International and Security Studies, a Researcher with the Afghanistan Canada Research Group, and a doctoral candidate in Political Science at York University. He is currently researching and writing his doctoral dissertation titled Peacebuilding, State-building, and Empire-building: Interventions from Central America to Central Asia during the Empire of Capital. In 2007, Skinner and his Afghan-Canadian research partner Hamayon Rastgar travelled throughout Afghanistan where they asked Afghans from all walks of life to comment on the international intervention. Since their return, both researchers have frequently been invited by academic and activist organisations, as well as news agencies across Canada to speak about Canada’s role in the Global War on Terror. Michael Skinner has written a number of reports, academic papers, book chapters, and journalism articles about the international interventions in both Central America and Central Asia. He is also a frequent foreign affairs commentator on The Michael Coren Show broadcast across Canada on the CTS television network.

Vernon Square Campus, V122, Wed. 23 March 2011, 5-7pm
Penton Rise
London , WC1X 9EW

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World Crisis