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Swords and Ploughshares - Lord Paddy Ashdown to speak at LSE

Lord Paddy Ashdown, former leader of the Liberal Democrats and high representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina between 2002-06, will participate in a public event at LSE on Monday 21 May. He will be joined by Professor Mary Kaldor, LSE, who will act as discussant to the points raised by Lord Ashdown as he discusses the topics raised in his new book, Swords and Ploughshares: bringing peace to the 21st century.

There have been 15 UN-led interventions since 1946, and there are at least 74 wars in progress today. Drawing from his varied experiences, as a Royal Marine officer in the 1960s, leader of the Liberal Democrats from 1988-99, and high representative in Bosnia from 2002-06, Lord Ashdown will discuss the successes and failures of peace-keeping operations, question what lessons have been learned - and what lessons keep being forgotten.

The men and women of the British armed forces are currently engaged in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Balkans in 'peacekeeping operations'. How do we avoid these missions turning into long-term entanglements, like the current disaster that is Iraq? How do we bring our soldiers home? And what do we do about 'failed states' that are havens for gangsters and terrorists? Paddy Ashdown fears we will soon see major wars between nation states. Many will begin as minor conflicts that will expand into full-scale wars unless the international community intervenes.

  • Paddy Ashdown was leader of the Liberal Democrats between 1988-99, before becoming high representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina between 2002-06.
  • Professor Mary Kaldo is co-director of the Centre for the Study of Global Governance at LSE, and was a member of the International Independent Commission to investigate the Kosovo Crisis.
  • David Held, also co-director of the Centre for the Study of Global Governance, will chair this event.

Swords and Ploughshares is on Monday 21 May 2007 at 5.30-7pm in the Old Theatre, Old Building, LSE, Houghton Street, London WC2A. This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis.

Ends

To request a press seat, please contact Jessica Winterstein, LSE Press Office, on 020 7955 7060 or email j.winterstein@lse.ac.uk| 

10 May 2007

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