The UK’s Naval Nuclear Reactors: Ageing Ungracefully?
Worrying reactor test results have prompted the Ministry of Defence to schedule an unexpected reactor replacement for the UK’s oldest nuclear-armed submarine, at a cost of £120 million. If forensic tests exacerbate these concerns, the financial costs of reactor replacement may not be the UK’s only worry.
11 Mar 2014
The Politics of Surveillance
There seems to be a political consensus on the need for surveillance of digital data that is proportionate to the danger faced by UK citizens. However, to counter threats, agencies face the challenge of sifting through huge volumes of data while maintaining the trust of the public.
7 Mar 2014
Hazards of the Space Junkyard
The recently Oscar-nominated film Gravity underscored the very real danger of space debris from old and existing satellites and space missions in the low earth orbit. Reducing the number of satellite missions will not be enough, and there are a number of initiatives underway to have space junk removed.
3 Mar 2014
Russia’s Crimea Gamble: another Reckless Putin Move
President Putin believes he can escalate and de-escalate the conflict in Crimea at will. But that is the same fallacy of omnipotence which has led Mr Putin to gamble so often on Ukraine, and lose the bet every time.
28 Feb 2014
Russia and Ukraine: the Empire Will Strike Back
With a revolution under way, it is unlikely for Russia to have tanks rolling into Ukraine. But humiliated now for a second time there, Russia does not need a military intervention to achieve its objective of squeezing Ukraine hard.
24 Feb 2014
Iran’s Nuclear Diplomacy: How the Gulf Feels Threatened
Stoking sectarianism, threatening stability and interfering in sovereign countries: Iran already is a source of instability to Gulf countries even without a deal on its nuclear programme. Feeling vulnerable, Gulf countries may look to US alternatives to guarantee their security.
18 Feb 2014
Iraq on the Edge of the Abyss
With elections in 2014, the situation in Iraq may unravel, with ramifications not only for the stability of the Iraqi government, but for the broader security of Iraqis and even the integrity of Iraq itself.
3 Feb 2014
The Syria Geneva-II Talks: ‘The Only Show in Town’
While both refuse to talk directly to each other, and threaten withdrawal at the slightest pretext, both sides realise that this dialogue is the only means acceptable to the international community to move forward.
29 Jan 2014
Iran's Nuclear Diplomacy: A Response from Oman
For the Gulf as a whole, Iran’s nuclear ambitions represents the most serious ongoing threat to the security of the region as a whole. However, there is diversity of opinion, reflecting important differences in the strategic circumstances and historical experiences of each Gulf state.
28 Jan 2014
Iran's Nuclear Diplomacy: A Response from Egypt
If Iran were to overtly cross the nuclear threshold, Egyptian restraint may be temporary, since Egypt may start its own nuclear programme or find itself fully supporting Saudi Arabia’s attempts to seek parity with Iran.
27 Jan 2014
Iran's Nuclear Diplomacy: A Response from Turkey
Turkey is wary of Iran’s nuclear programme and its development of ballistic missiles. Whilst Ankara pursues dialogue with Tehran,Turkey will also put in place conventional assets to help defend Turkish territory.
27 Jan 2014
The United States Implements Defence Export Control Reforms
Export controls for the US defence industry are being reformed. This is a strategic judgment by the Obama Administration where ‘higher fences around fewer items’ of very advanced technologies are designed to counter threats to the US from advanced states or near-peer competitors such as China.
22 Jan 2014