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Ironing things out
on 11 February 2006
In this brilliant book, Thatcher discusses the state of the world at the start of the 21st century and the way forward, drawing on her considerable experience and keen insights. Chapter One: cold war reflections, touches on many subjects from the information revolution to the victory of the West in the cold war. Chapter Two looks at the American achievement including the concept of a unipolar world, military preparedness, defence technologies and missile defence.
Chapter Three deals with Russia, the legacy of communism, the role of the IMF, the failed economic reforms, the country's relations with its former Soviet colonies and what remains of its military power. Part One of Chapter Four explains why Asia, with half of the world's population and a third of all dry land, matters so much. Part Two deals with the Tigers: Singapore, South Korea and Indonesia, whilst Part Three is devoted to Japan. The next chapter, Asian Giants, deals with China (including Taiwan and Hong Kong) and India.
In Chapter Six, rogue states, religion and terrorism are discussed, with particular reference to North Korea, Islam, Iraq, Syria, Lybia and Iran. In Chapter Seven, Thatcher discusses human rights, genocide, the Yugoslavia and Rwanda criminal tribunals, the international criminal court and European court of human rights.
Chapter Eight investigates the Balkan wars whilst Chapter Nine is devoted to the European Union. Thatcher investigates the roots of the European idea, the European economic and social model, the pensions crisis, the common agricultural policy, the Euro currency as a means towards a superstate and the bureaucratic, anti-democratic nature of the EU.
Thatcher warns against the creeping loss of sovereignty to unaccountable EU bureaucrats who have only contempt for democracy. The next chapter looks at the current situation of the UK by investigating all the options of how her country might extricate itself from this mess. She advises Britain to stick to the Pound and to renegotiate the structure of the EU.
The last chapter strikes a devastating blow to the critics of capitalism by illustrating how well the free economies have been performing as opposed to the shackled economies of the remaining authoritarian regimes. She also dissects the absurdities of the global warming scare and discusses globalism and its enemies.
The postscript deals with accountability and the Magna Carta in a delightful description of Thatcher and her husband's visit to the memorial at Runnymede. She concludes the book with the observation that the political culture of the English-speaking peoples has given the world the ideas that power should be limited, force should not overrule justice plus the conviction that individuals have an absolute moral worth.
There are 20 full color potgraphs, 13 maps and 8 tables that enhances this highly readable and illuminating text. Bibliographic references are scattered throughout and the book concludes with a thorough index.