Risking NATO: Testing the Limits of the Alliance in Afghanistan

Risking NATO: Testing the Limits of the Alliance in Afghanistan

Risking NATO: Testing the Limits of the Alliance in Afghanistan

Risking NATO: Testing the Limits of the Alliance in Afghanistan


"Superb… Flanders's convincing and smart synthesis of the evolution of an official police force, fictional detectives, and real-life cause célèbres will appeal to devotees of true crime and detective fiction alike." – Publishers Weekly, starred review

In this fascinating exploration of murder in the nineteenth century, Judith Flanders examines some of the most gripping cases that captivated the Victorians and gave rise to the first detective fiction

Murder in the nineteenth century was rare. But murder as sensation and entertainment became ubiquitous, with cold-blooded killings transformed into novels, broadsides, ballads, opera, and melodrama- even into puppet shows and performing dog-acts. Detective fiction and the new police force developed in parallel, each imitating the other- the founders of Scotland Yard gave rise to Dickens's Inspector Bucket, the first fictional police detective, who in turn influenced Sherlock Holmes and, ultimately, even P.D. James and Patricia Cornwell.

In this meticulously researched and engrossing book, Judith Flanders retells the gruesome stories of many different types of murder, both famous and obscure: from Greenacre, who transported his dismembered fiancée around town by omnibus, to Burke and Hare's bodysnatching business in Edinburgh; from the crimes (and myths) of Sweeney Todd and Jack the Ripper, to the tragedy of the murdered Marr family in London's East End. Through these stories of murder- from the brutal to the pathetic- Flanders builds a rich and multi-faceted portrait of Victorian society. With an irresistible cast of swindlers, forgers, and poisoners, the mad, the bad and the utterly dangerous, The Invention of Murder is both a mesmerizing tale of crime and punishment, and history at its most readable.


Since August 2003, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has had a substantial military presence in Afghanistan, culminating in operations spanning the country beginning in October 2006. For the first time in the history of the alliance, NATO is operating on territory outside of Europe and is responsible for the security of a nonmember state. The risks and implications entailed in such a mission are far reaching, to say the least, and, in some ways, can be compared with other momentous challenges that NATO has confronted over its 60-year history.

This monograph evaluates NATO’s role as an alliance, both with regard to its internal dynamics and its role in facing external security threats. It focuses on NATO’s role in Afghanistan in particular and the implications that this undertaking and its results could have for the future of the alliance.

The document is an outgrowth of a research project, “Risks and Rewards in U.S. Alliances.” The project sought to examine pressures on alliance structures, and on U.S. allies more generally, to better understand what the United States and its key partners seek to gain from such alliances; how changing security circumstances are shaping and, in some circumstances, recasting the nature of these partnerships; and, more generally, to explore the costs and benefits of sustaining alliance relationships into the future. Additionally, the project aimed to shed light on strategies that could maximize the benefits of key partnerships into the indefinite future, as well as strategies to share and distrib-

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