Citations of RUSI experts, analysis and events in the global media from November 2010.
Terrorism in the UK
The terrorist threat to the UK was highlighted by a number of high-profile events in the news and within RUSI. From the Yemen Air-Cargo Bomb Plot to Olympic Security, high profile speakers gave their views at RUSI concerning the ever-present danger of terrorism to the UK's security.
The Yemeni air-cargo bomb plot brought into focus the threat from Al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula and the UK's need to reassess its security policies. RUSI analysts were asked for their assessment of the threat from this Al-Qa'ida cell to the UK.
The Home Secretary, Theresa May, gave an address at RUSI concerning the terrorist threat to the UK and the government's response to it on 3 November, shortly after the Yemen Bomb Plot was foiled. In the speech, the Home Secretary talked about the incident and outlined three key areas that the government would focus on to combat terrorism in the UK.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson gave a speech at RUSI on 'Building National Resilience' on 24 November. The Commissioner said that, whilst several significant threats to UK security have been disrupted since 9/11, the threat from terrorism was a persistent and constantly changing landscape that the police, security services and public must work together to address. The UK police chief also said that the terrorist threat level was on a three year high since the 2007 nightclub attack in London.
Looking at the issue of terrorism from a legal stand point, the Rt Hon Lord Justice Gross outlined a variety of areas where national security impacts on the courts at the RUSI Intelligence Oversight Conference on 16 November. The conference and Lord Justice Gross' address coincided with events concerning the Guantanamo Bay settlements to prisoners and the press coverage reflected this.
RUSI's Olympic and Paralympic Safety and Security Conference boasted a number of high profile speakers, including Secretary of State for Security Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones and the Deputy Director of the Office of Cyber Security and Information Assurance, Air Commodore Graham Wright. The conference received a lot of press coverage not just for the discussions on the Olympic Games being a soft target for terrorism, but also for the government's plans to tighten up the Games' cyber-security.
The Korean Peninsula Crisis
The artillery exchange on 23 November between North and South Korea sent shock waves through the international community as the prospect of the resumption of hostilities between the two nations almost became a stark reality. The North's bombardment of Yeonpyeong Island was met with condemnation and puzzlement from world leaders and journalists alike, and the analysis of RUSI experts was sort after to help to clarify the exact reasons for the incident.
The Lisbon NATO Summit
In the shadow of European austerity measures, the NATO summit promised a new strategic concept that would bring the Cold War organisation into the 21st century. The key issues discussed were the new missile defence project, NATO plans for Afghanistan and NATO cuts and streamlining. The presence of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, the rumours of Russia joining NATO and the multilateral agreements reached between NATO and Russia were also major developments from the Summit.
UK-France Military Co-operation
The UK and France signed a historic defence treaty on 2 November, bringing the two countries closer together and setting the ground work for a greater share in military capabilities between them. This was seen as a vital move from both governments due to the recent cuts in defence spending on both sides of the channel. However, many remained sceptical that such an agreement was a good idea or would indeed last very long and RUSI analysts were in demand for their thoughts on the issue.
Iran Nuclear Capability
Iran's continuing development of nuclear weapons despite UN sanctions has become a keener issue than ever, especially due to this month's WikiLeaks revelations. Our Middle East experts were asked their views on whether Israel or the US would take action against Iran if international demands for them to stop their nuclear programmes continue to be ignored.