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Jeremy Waldron: Equality of Opportunity

19 September 2002
Against Equality of Opportunity 
by Matt Cavanagh.
Oxford, 223 pp., £25, February 2002, 0 19 924343 3
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... and entitlements over these.’ Now, almost thirty years later, we have another critique of equality of opportunity, another attack by a well-trained philosopher on this apparently moderate ideal. MattCavanagh’s attack is not the same as Nozick’s. Though Cavanagh takes seriously the Nozickian challenge – he calls it the ‘libertarian objection’ – he doesn’t think it’s unanswerable ...

Worse than a Defeat

James Meek: Shamed in Afghanistan

18 December 2014
The Good War: Why We Couldn’t Win the War or the Peace in Afghanistan 
by Jack Fairweather.
Cape, 488 pp., £20, December 2014, 978 0 224 09736 9
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Investment in Blood: The True Cost of Britain’s Afghan War 
by Frank Ledwidge.
Yale, 287 pp., £10.99, July 2014, 978 0 300 20526 8
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British Generals in Blair’s Wars 
edited by Jonathan Bailey, Richard Iron and Hew Strachan.
Ashgate, 404 pp., £19.95, August 2013, 978 1 4094 3736 9
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An Intimate War: An Oral History of the Helmand Conflict 1978-2012 
by Mike Martin.
Hurst, 389 pp., £25, April 2014, 978 1 84904 336 6
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... 2006 belongs to Tony Blair. And yet it takes two to indulge in unnecessary wars: the leader to tell the military what to do, and the military to tell the leader that it can be done. Ledwidge quotes MattCavanagh, who worked in Downing Street on the Helmand plan, as saying that the chiefs of staff told them taking on Afghanistan’s largest and potentially most difficult province ‘was an ...

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