DR CHRISTINA GOULTER As Dr Huw Davies suggested in this post, how successfully the British armed forces incorporate their recent experience of counter-insurgency operations in Afghanistan and Iraq into doctrine and planning is likely to shape future perceptions of those campaigns. The fight against the Taliban has not ended, even for the West, because some advisory work by… Read More COUNTER-INSURGENCY: A QUESTION OF VICTORY
This post is based on a paper presented at an event organised by the Defence Culture and Languages Centre (DCLC) and King’s College London’s Regional Security Research Centre (RSRC), titled ‘Regional Study Day: North Africa’, which took place on 21 October 2015. By DR AMIR M KAMEL After four years since Libya first experienced its own… Read More LIBYA: SOME CONTEXT BEHIND THE ONGOING UNREST
DR RICHARD HAMMOND As with many of the historically themed posts on this blog, this one relates to an anniversary. November 2015 marks 75 years since the Fleet Air Arm’s famous raid on the Italian Navy at Taranto. For the loss of just two aircraft, a small force of British biplanes heavily damaged three battleships,… Read More Taranto Revisited: 75 Years On
DR SIMON MOODY Thinking about future war is important. Very important. History is replete with examples of military organisations that became the unwitting authors of their own demise because they failed to adapt to the changing military environment in which they operated. The French were out-fought and out-thought in 1940 because of a stagnant military… Read More Future War: Thinking the Thinkable
DR ALISON HAWKS —The data presented here was drawn from a large-scale study of armed private security contractors, of which this blog post is one aspect. The study set out to explore the perceptions and realities of being a private security contractor after military service. Of the men and women who completed the survey (n=1516),… Read More What Private Security Contracting can Teach Us About Recruitment and Retention in the Armed Forces
DR DAVID MORGAN-OWEN On the morning of November 3rd 1914 German battle cruiser bombarded the popular resort town of Yarmouth on the Norfolk Coast. The Daily Mail reported how the German ships ‘appeared suddenly out of nowhere, revealed in the dim haze of dawn to steam drifters five miles of Lowestoft, fired on a British… Read More Planning for war in the North Sea 1912-1914
DR DAVID ROBERTS On 1 November 2015, the UK Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond inaugurated the beginning of works constructing the UK’s first permanent military base in Bahrain in the Persian Gulf since 1971 when the UK withdrew from the region. Using language that almost seemed to deliberately hark back to Britain’s colonial days in the… Read More UK in the Gulf: to Engage or not to engage?
DR JEFFREY MICHAELS AND DR ANDREW GAWTHORPE In a recent article in a special issue of Small Wars & Insurgencies, we considered the contribution Hollywood has made to our understanding of counterinsurgency and nation-building during the Vietnam War. The war has been the subject of so many blockbuster films that it is inevitable that they… Read More Film Portrayals of Counterinsurgency and Nation-building in Vietnam