ROBERT SEELY Russia’s intervention in the morass of Syria’s civil war was as dramatic as it was sudden. To date, much of the Western punditry has been pondering the question, what is Russia’s aim? Is it to attack IS, support Assad or challenge the West? Is it sending a message to global audiences of Russia’s… Read More Russian Messaging and Intention in Syria: Perception Through Strategic Culture?
DR CHRISTOPHER TUCK The Strategic Defence and Security Review 2015 (SDSR15) document is in many respects both muscular and ambitious. It has a global focus, taking the view that ‘engagement is not an optional extra’ on the basis that domestic and international security are now linked inextricably. It argues for the need to ‘act decisively’… Read More SDSR 15: Five Questions
This post is based on a seminar series talk organised by King’s College London’s Regional Security Research Centre (RSRC), which took place on 24 November 2015. By DR AVINASH PALIWAL As the UK tries to reenergise its economy, manage its diverging interests with the US and the EU, and debate its role in the Middle East (especially the… Read More Tale of Two Visits: THE UK’s Outreach to China and India
By DR AMIR M KAMEL In July 2015, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed between the P5+1 (the US, UK, France, Russia, China plus Germany) and Iran, and hailed as a landmark agreement. The JCPOA is concerned with the alleviation of sanctions levied against Tehran in return for the scaling back of… Read More DID US SANCTIONS SUCCEED IN BRINGING IRAN TO THE TABLE?
by Dr ROBERT T. FOLEY In the summer of 1916, in the midst of one of the First World War’s most cataclysmic battles, the German army did a remarkable thing. During the course of the battle of the Somme, it created a new defensive doctrine. What is most remarkable about this is that it did… Read More Horizontal Military Innovation and Lessons Reports
ANNA BRINKMAN The creation of foreign policy and the prosecution of war are often largely dependent on the personalities and circumstances of those in power. This is, perhaps, a disconcerting truth that can be mitigated by the development of international law, alliances, and multilateral or unilateral treaties. The mitigation, however, only goes so far, as… Read More The Antigallican Affair: British Foreign Policy and the Personalities of the Spanish Court in the Seven Years’ War
DR JILL RUSSELL To clarify in advance: I am not a wanton proponent of war or the use of force. I do not pretend that air strikes are an answer on their own. With those disclaimers out of the way, it is also important to understand when force is a necessary component to policy. ISIS,… Read More The UK Decision on Syria: The Political Calculus on ISIS Has Changed
DR CHRISTOPHER TUCK After much controversy, Britain is now bombing ISIL targets in Syria. But the intensity of the debates surrounding the decision to bomb is unlikely to be rewarded by any immediate commensurate outcomes on the ground. Britain’s decision to bomb Syria is largely therefore of symbolic importance. That doesn’t mean, however, that the… Read More The Uk Decision on Syria: Bombing Syria matters: Britain’s involvement doesn’t
DR DAVID B ROBERTS An outline of a modus vivendi with Russia is required if there is to be any progress in the fight against Da’esh. Otherwise, the vaunted 70,000 strong ‘moderate’ forces will continue to be attacked by Russia. Indeed, their bombing campaign to date has been almost exclusively focused on forces other than… Read More The UK Decision on Syria: The Only Solution Is a Political Solution
BILL PARK Yesterday’s vote approving the PM’s desire to bandwagon with the UK’s US and French NATO allies in bombing IS targets in Syria will make little difference to the majority of Syrians. The British strikes against oil facilities that came in the immediate wake of the vote might make a small dent in IS’s… Read More The UK Decision on Syria: Lions roar, mice squeak – the response of a ‘terrorist sympathiser’