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The Anglo-American military relationship: Institutional rules, practices, and narratives

Rees, Wyn; Davies, Lance


Professor of International Security

Lance Davies


The Anglo-American military relationship is a vital yet neglected area of study. This article argues that the British military have actively cultivated a relationship with the U.S. military that has contributed to the longevity of the broader so-called "Special Relationship", even in the Trump era. The article contends that the complexities of the military relationship can best be captured by the theoretical lens provided by Lowndes and Roberts that combines different strands of institutionalism to focus on rules, practices, and narratives. The intense linkages between the United States and United Kingdom have become routinized, enabling them to adapt their peacetime cooperation to conflicts, and thereby address post-Cold War security challenges. The article draws upon semi-structured interviews with senior British military officers as well as policy documents to explore how these patterns of collaboration have become ingrained in patterns of both thinking and behavior.


Rees, W., & Davies, L. (2019). The Anglo-American military relationship: Institutional rules, practices, and narratives. Contemporary Security Policy, 40(3), 312-334.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 10, 2019
Online Publication Date Mar 1, 2019
Publication Date Mar 1, 2019
Deposit Date Feb 19, 2019
Publicly Available Date Sep 2, 2020
Journal Contemporary Security Policy
Print ISSN 1352-3260
Electronic ISSN 1743-8764
Publisher Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 40
Issue 3
Pages 312-334
Keywords Political Science and International Relations
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Peer Review Statement: The publishing and review policy for this title is described in its Aims & Scope.; Aim & Scope:; Published: 2019-03-01


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