Here is the latest nomination in our series highlighting people David Cameron should consider appointing to the House of Lords.
If you would like to nominate someone, please email Jonathan Isaby with your suggestion, ideally including key arguments for the nomination as well as biographical information. The sources of nominations will be treated confidentially where requested.
No. 50: Michael Burleigh
A reader from London writes:
"I would like to nominate Michael Burleigh for appointment to a House of Lords in need of greater historical, intellectual and cultural insight. I feel that Burleigh, as one of Britain’s leading historians, authors and commentators, would make a tremendous addition to the Upper House.
"Burleigh has held numerous academic posts both at home (UCL, New College Oxford, LSE, Cardiff and Buckingham University) and across the Atlantic (Rutgers, Washington & Lee and Stanford). His books command an international audience and have been translated into eleven languages. He has also been active in television history – indeed he holds the rare distinction of having won three television awards (British Film Institute Award for Archival Achievement, New York Film and TV Festival Bronze Medal and an Emmy for Best TV Documentary) and the Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction for The Third Reich: A New History in 2001.
"Michael Burleigh would be a compelling candidate simply on the basis of his credentials as an historian, but he is also a remarkably engaging, and engaged, commentator on the present. Besides being a regular contributor to the The Telegraph, The Times, The Sunday Times and The Daily Mail, Burleigh is also an authority on terrorism and security. Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke has recommended Burleigh’s latest book – Blood and Rage: A Cultural History of Terrorism – as required reading for counter-terrorism officers. Burleigh has advised the Conservative Shadow Defence Group in the House of Commons, and his work is often referenced by David Cameron, for instance in his speech on foreign policy and counter-terrorism in Islamabad last September. Indeed his recent works Earthly Powers and Sacred Causes have drawn praise from still more exalted quarters, as conveyed by His Holiness the Pope!
"Burleigh has also made a major contribution to medical ethics through his work on Nazi Germany (for instance Death and Deliverance: Euthanasia in Germany 1900-45 and the Channel 4 documentary ‘Selling Murder: The Nazi Euthanasia Programme’), and has lectured extensively to medical audiences, here and abroad.
"Moreover Burleigh is active on the advisory boards of Standpoint magazine, and the think-tanks Policy Exchange and New Culture Forum, which currently represent some of the liveliest and most important mediums of forward-thinking and debate in this country.
Michael Burleigh’s combination of historical perspective, and informed insight into some of the most important matters of our time, would make a better House of Lords. A thinker so highly regarded across the globe would surely provide just the kind of intellectual substance sought by a Conservative Government under David Cameron."
> Previous nomination: Stanley Fink