Iraq's post-invasion 'vortex of violence' was not the result of bad decision-making after the fall of Saddam, but the inevitable consequence of George W Bush's invasion plans, writes Britain's foremost Iraq historian, Charles Tripp, in the new issue of The World Today.

Ten years on from the invasion, Professor Tripp points to three costly lessons that must be learned about intervention if the West is to avoid making the same mistakes elsewhere, not least that any military intervention will have regional repercussions.

Amid a global railway revival, Beijing has ambitious plans to connect Asia with Europe, as it seeks to build a new 'Silk Railroad'. Michael Binyon reports that as technical problems are solved one by one, the political obstacles in the way of creating a transcontinental rail route through Iran, and perhaps Afghanistan, loom ever larger.

China's growing international presence is also being felt in the world of fashion. Angelica Cheung, editor of Vogue China, tells Alan Philps that her magazine 'is the one Vogue that has a soul'. Elsewhere, CIA veteran and author Susan Hasler reports on the sexist culture in the intelligence community and says the real enemy facing female agents... is men.

Finally, how the Australian government has taken on the tobacco industry and won. Since December 2012, all cigarette packets have been available only in dark, drab packaging with no logo, brand imagery or promotional text. Australia's smoking rates are now among the lowest in the world, with some smokers even claiming that cigarettes in plain packaging 'taste different'.

Notes to Editors

The World Today is Chatham House's bi-monthly international affairs magazine. Articles from the current issue are available online and are open-access.

To view articles from previous editions, please contact the Press Office or subscribe to The World Today.

Read full issue online>>