Tim Willasey-Wilsey

Visiting Professor, Department of War Studies, King's College, London

Tim Willasey-Wilsey is a Visiting Professor of War Studies at King's College, London. As a former British diplomat for 27 years he served mainly in Southern Africa, Central America and South Asia. In addition to a posting in Islamabad, Pakistan Tim was a frequent visitor to India, Afghanistan and North East Asia as a Director in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Since leaving government service he has been advising British companies on international affairs and government relations. He is an elected member of the Council at Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs). Tim writes and lectures on a wide range of subjects including South Asia, Liberation Movements and Insurgency, Terrorism, and Conflict Resolution. He has an MA (First Class) in Modern History from St Andrews University in Scotland.
Expertise

Afghanistan, Indo-Pakistan relations, Pakistan, Insurgency and Terrorism, Asia Pacific Security, Conflict Resolution

Last modified: September 17, 2021

Recent projects

afghanistan airport Courtesy: Haroon Sabawoon
13 August 2021 Gateway House

Afghanistan: Limited options for regional powers

The Taliban’s rapid advance towards Kabul shows clear signs of learning from previous failures. The chances of a revival of the old Northern Alliance are minimal. Regional powers are left with the option of maintaining diplomatic contact with the Taliban whilst not taking any assurances on trust.

istanbul summit: last chance for afghanistan Courtesy:
26 April 2021 Gateway House

Istanbul Summit: Last chance for Afghanistan

The Taliban should have been reintegrated into Afghan society several years ago. It is now probably too late to persuade them to accept anything less than a dominant role in Kabul. However, Turkey, Pakistan and the United States may have one last chance to pressure the antagonists into a negotiated settlement, perhaps along the following lines.
Joe Biden_final Courtesy: Tim Willasey-Wilsey
31 August 2020 Gateway House

Biden’s ancestral Chennai connect

U.S. presidential candidate Joe Biden has an ancestral connect with India, as does his vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris, both tracing it back to Chennai, then Madras. During the 19th century, brothers Christopher and William Biden worked for the East India company, taking the rather arduous ship route between London and India. While William died at an early age, Christopher went on to Captain several ships during his service and eventually settled down to a prosperous life in Madras.

Junagadh_Map-01 Courtesy: Gateway House
24 August 2020 Gateway House

Pakistan should drop Junagadh claim

Pakistan’s recent claims on Junagadh is a response to its frustration that the big powers and Islamic world have failed to respond to India’s unilateral action in revoking Article 370 and incorporating Ladakh and Kashmir under New Delhi’s federal control. But the continuing claim is only damaging to Pakistan’s cause.

shutterstock_716498572 Courtesy: Shutterstock
27 February 2020 Gateway House

The 2020 retreat from Kabul

The signing of an agreement between the U.S. and the Taliban on February 29 may result in the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, which is contingent upon the Taliban’s adherence to certain conditions. The end of the West’s 19-year-long Afghan campaign – if Pakistan does not turn spoiler – is of vital interest to India
120416-N-ZI635-259 
INDIAN OCEAN (April 16, 2012) The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) and the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Halsey (DDG 97) participate in a passing exercise with Indian navy ships during Exercise Malabar 2012. Carl Vinson, Bunker Hill, and Halsey comprise Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 1 and are participating in the annual bi-lateral naval field training exercise with the Indian navy to advance multinational maritime relationships and mutual security issues. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman George M. Bell/Released) Courtesy: Wikimedia
24 April 2017 Gateway House

Military option in North Korea too risky

As the United States considers its policy options towards North Korea it must understand that Pyongyang has been thinking about military conflict for decades. It too will have military plans and they could pose major challenges for the U.S. This is why China and South Korea–and U.S. regional experts too–prefer the diplomatic route
Afghan Taliban Courtesy: Flickr/ResoluteSupportMedia
5 January 2017 Gateway House

Moscow shifts Afghan stance: what next?

The Russians have concluded that the Afghan Taliban offer a better shield against the Islamic State than the old Northern Alliance. A negotiated settlement in Afghanistan could be achieved if Washington and New Delhi join Moscow, Beijing, Islamabad and Tehran in a joint effort.