Excellence in Scholarship and Learning


The Adoption of a Pro-US Foreign Policy by Spain and the United Kingdom

José María Aznar and Tony Blair’s Personal Motivations and their Global Impact

Nathan Jones holds a PhD in Politics from the University of Nottingham. He is an Independent Researcher of Spanish, British, and Comparative European Politics. He has also taught European Politics and Spanish Language at the University of Nottingham.

The alliance between Prime Ministers José María Aznar and Tony Blair represented a crucial moment in recent European and World politics, owing to the divisive nature of their support for the United States in the wake of the terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001. The extent of their collaboration, combined with their interventionist approach to tackling global threats, reflected an unprecedented level of cooperation between Spain and the United Kingdom.

This book sets out to explain Aznar and Blair’s foreign policy and how they came to support the United States. Understanding their relationship is imperative to explaining divisions over European reform, intervention, tackling rogue states, the response to 9/11, and the war on terrorism. This critical period in world politics has been subject to significant academic analysis, but the motivations behind the adoption of a pro-US foreign policy by Aznar and Blair have hitherto not been examined from a comparative perspective. Analysis uncovers factors that have either been overlooked or understated in terms of their influence throughout the Aznar–Blair relationship, particularly regarding their alliance in the European Union before September 2001. This compelling comparative study is invaluable to explaining how two leaders from different political backgrounds and traditions became such close allies, and how they came to support US foreign policy despite the pressures of deep divisions within the EU political bloc.

Published in association with the Cañada Blanch Centre for Contemporary Spanish Studies


Hardback ISBN: 978-1-84519-835-0
Hardback Price: £60.00 / $74.95
Release Date: March 2017
Page Extent / Format: 272 pp. / 234 x 156 mm
Illustrated: No



List of World Leaders

Timeline of Key Events

Introduction: Framing and Structuring

Chapter 1: The Academic, the Journalistic, and the Political

Chapter 2: Method and Framework of Analysis

Chapter 3: 3 March 1996–10 September 2001

Chapter 4: 11 September 2001–18 March 2003

Chapter 5: 19 March 2003–14 March 2004

Conclusion: Common Grounds

Technical Appendix


From the Guest Series Editor's Preface by Paul M. Heywood,  Sir Francis Hill Professor of European Politics, University of Nottingham

Jones makes a strong argument that, in order to understand the reasons for Aznar and Blair supporting the United States, it is necessary explicitly to compare the development of their respective foreign policies, rather to treat each as a separate case. Their similarities are so striking that to discuss foreign policy in isolation overlooks a number of salient points that add an important new dimension to the understanding of why Aznar and Blair took the domestically highly contentious decision to remain close allies of the United States. The book also highlights the role played by the leaders of France and Germany, who inadvertently cemented the alliance between Aznar and Blair.

Books can be ordered by phone or online

Ordering in the UK, Europe, Asia, Australasia, South America and Rest of the World

Gazelle Book Services
Direct sales tel.: +44 (0)1524 528500; email:
Web ordering:

Ordering in the United States and Canada
Independent Publishers Group (IPG)
Direct sales tel.: (800) 888-4741
Web ordering:

Bookseller Ordering
Information is provided under the Resources tab.

eBook Ordering
e-Book type availability can be sourced via by book title. Kindle availability is via Amazon .com and sites.