NATO’s deterrence moves in the Baltic States: falling into Russia’s trap?

Dr Rod Thornton NATO has decided to increase the number of troops it has operating (technically, either training or exercising) in the Baltic States. Included  in this contingent will be no less than four British tanks. The stated reason for this deployment is to ‘deter’ Russian aggression against Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. All well and… Read More NATO’s deterrence moves in the Baltic States: falling into Russia’s trap?

Why Islamic State is wrong: Sykes-Picot is not responsible for controversial borders in the Middle East – but the British military is (Part 1)

This is Part One of a two part series on Sykes-Picot and the controversial borders of the Middle East. Dr Rod Thornton The Sykes-Picot Agreement, reached during the First World War by Britain and France, has recently been given renewed prominence. This has come about with the claim by Islamic State (IS) that this accord… Read More Why Islamic State is wrong: Sykes-Picot is not responsible for controversial borders in the Middle East – but the British military is (Part 1)

A Capital Mistake: Evidence and Defence in the Brexit Debates

Professor Matthew Uttley & Dr. Benedict Wilkinson In one of his more exasperated moments, Sherlock Holmes turns to his long-term companion, Dr. Watson and chides him for his impatience, saying ‘It is a capital mistake to theorize before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment.’ Strong words they may be, but wise ones… Read More A Capital Mistake: Evidence and Defence in the Brexit Debates

Tale of Two Visits: THE UK’s Outreach to China and India

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

The UK Decision on Syria: The Only Solution Is a Political Solution

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

The UK Decision on Syria: Lions roar, mice squeak – the response of a ‘terrorist sympathiser’

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’

The UK Decision on Syria: The View From Russia

DR TRACEY GERMAN The news that the British parliament had sanctioned airstrikes against IS in Syria, and that the first missions had taken place, has been widely reported in Russia. The move is likely to be seen as vindication for Russia’s ongoing operation there: with the French launching airstrikes against Syria at the end of… Read More The UK Decision on Syria: The View From Russia

The Act of Killing

DR CHRIS TUCK Previous Defence-in-Depth blogs have covered ‘forgotten battles’: this blog addresses the consequences of a forgotten war: the undeclared war fought between Britain and Indonesia from 1963-66, termed by the Indonesians Konfrontasi (Confrontation). Small wars often have large consequences, even if those consequences do not always impinge on western consciousness. In Jakarta, fifty… Read More The Act of Killing