Assala Khettach, Assistant Editor of Insight, a Turkish journal on politics and international affairs, and Christopher Kinsey, Reader, Defence Studies Department. King’s College London Ever since the early 1960s, Africa has been plagued by mercenaries. They started to apply their trade, first in the Congo, then later in Nigeria, Angola, Libya and other countries where… Read More Local Libyan Perceptions of Russia’s Wagner Corporation
Rod Thornton and Marina Miron, Defence Studies Department, King’s College London Much has been made of last month’s destruction by Russia of one of its defunct Soviet-era satellites (Kosmos 1408) in a test-firing of a Nudol direct-ascent anti-satellite missile (DA-ASAT). The possibility of the debris produced by this strike hitting the International Space Station (ISS)… Read More Russian space weapons: Testing the Nudol and Putin’s political warfare agenda
Dr Kevin Blachford, Defence Studies Department. King’s College London The “Western way of war” (TWOW) is a concept that was most notably defined by the historian Victor Davis Hanson who viewed the Ancient Greeks and their form of decisive infantry battle as the wellspring of a unique Western tradition. It is an ideal of well… Read More Which Greeks in the Western Way of War?
Dr Christopher Kinsey, Defence Studies Department, & Ronald Ti, PhD candidate, Wars Studies Department, King’s College London Cargo cults exist to this day in the South-West Pacific. They arose following World War Two after vast quantities of materiel were left by the departing Allied forces. The belief sprang up that more of this vast wealth… Read More The UK Integrated Review and security sector innovation: a ‘Cargo Cult’?
Dr Christian Tripodi, Defence Studies Department, King’s College London Recent events in Afghanistan brings to the fore some sobering considerations for Western policymakers. From whether the move will be interpreted by the West’s strategic adversaries as a display of weakness rather than ruthlessness; the extent that the new Taliban regime may now play host to… Read More The Integrated Review, failing states, and why persistent problems persist
Christopher Kinsey, Defence Studies Department, and Bob Parr, PhD student at King’s College London and a 25-year veteran of UK Special Forces Images of appalling violence and humanitarian distress surrounding the recently completed crisis evacuations from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul have brought into sharp relief the failure of the Afghan Armed Forces to… Read More Governments and Mercenaries: A New Era of Cooperation after Afghanistan?
Dr Zeno Leoni, Defence Studies Department The Communist Party of China (CPC) will be celebrating its 100th birthday on July 1, 2021. It is an anniversary that comes at a very symbolic moment. Ironically, just as the international campaign for the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to change course from state capitalism to a free-market… Read More Why there is much to celebrate as the Communist Party of China turns 100
Dr Tim Benbow, Defence Studies Department There has long been a tendency to understate and misunderstand the role of the Royal Navy’s capital ships in the Second World War. A few years ago, I wrote an article (naturally with an associated blog on Defence in Depth) that explored the role of aircraft carriers in supporting… Read More Battleships, D-Day and Naval Strategy
Dr Frank Foley, Department of War Studies, King’s College London The UK looked set to undermine the international prohibition against torture, but stiff opposition, including from former senior officers and prominent defence figures, forced a change. The UK’s Overseas Operations Bill passed into law at the end of April following a long debate on whether… Read More Britain’s U-turn on torture – how defence figures defended human rights
Wing Commander Phil Holdcroft, Defence Studies Department MA Student “Reflecting on 18 years’ service as an officer and helicopter pilot, I don’t believe I’ve ever formally received dedicated psychological resilience training. Furthermore, I don’t think I’m in the minority. I’m not for a moment suggesting that the rigours of aircrew selection, pressures of flying training,… Read More Psychological Resilience — the missing golden thread?