chapter  13
38 Pages

Naval diplomacy

WithGeoffrey Till

Despite the fact that naval diplomacy is as old as civilisation, the great masters of maritime thought only partially dealt with its complexities. The greater costs and risks of applying force in the nuclear age concentrated naval minds on the issue of what could be, and should be, the role of navies in situations short of outright and major war. When Turner took over the US Naval War College at Newport, he put such ideas into practice by completely revamping its educational syllabus so that his students studied the demands of presence alongside those of war-fighting. The academic analysts produced their own varying taxonomies of the purposes and methods of naval diplomacy. Naval diplomacy is at its most effective when properly integrated with all other aspects of a nation's foreign policy. Indeed, to paraphrase Corbett, naval diplomacy is best understood as part of a maritime diplomacy in those many situations where the sea is a major factor.