Citations of RUSI experts, analysis and events in the global media from October 2010.
The National Security Strategy and the Strategic Defence and Security Review
The lead up to the release of the National Security Strategy and the Strategic Defence and Security Review saw a furore of speculation on what the review might contain and the possible impact on the UK's security. RUSI analysts gave their views to the press on the dangers and needs of cutting the defence budget, on what capabilities should be kept and what the UK could afford to let go.
The release of the SDSR came with a few surprises, most notably a much lower cut on defence spending than most analysts were expecting. The controversial scrapping of the Harriers and Nimrod alongside the decision to keep on building the two new carriers created a lot of talking points where the analysis of RUSI experts was much sort after. The commitment to cyber defence was also commented upon by RUSI analysts.
COVERAGE: Telegraph, Guardian, Channel 4 News, Daily Mail, Telegraph, BBC News, Guardian, Today Programme BBC Radio 4, Daily Politics, Yahoo, Wales Online, Associated Press, Australian, Times, Guardian
The world recession has led not only to the UK reviewing its defence spending, but also to defence reviews across Europe and in the US. With our defence spending so closely linked to our relationship with the US, RUSI Director Michael Clarke debated whether Washington would continue to take us seriously given the outcome of the SDSR. Furthermore, the idea of strengthening our military ties with France was once again being touted in the press, especially after Etienne de Duran wrote a Future Defence Review Paper for RUSI on the very subject.
General Petraeus Delivers a Speech at RUSI
General H. Petraeus, NATO's senior commander of troops in Afghanistan, delivered a speech at RUSI on the international mission in Afghanistan. Amid concerns that military cutbacks in British defence may damage the NATO alliance, Gen Petraeus praised the UK forces, saying they are vital to establishing peace in the region. He also offered his deepest condolences to the family of the kidnapped aid worker, Linda Norgrove, killed during a rescue mission in east Afghanistan. The investigation into her death, he said, was active, transparent and a personal priority for him.
The Defence and Security Review Survey
RUSI asked 2,015 people from the defence and security community whether they agreed or disagreed on ten key statements covering the outcome of the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR). According to 68 per cent of respondents, the SDSR was a lost opportunity for a radical rethink of the UK's position in the world and 58 per cent believed the US would take the UK less seriously in terms of military capability as a result of the cuts. However, 94 per cent believed that the government was right to make defence part of a wider review of national security. Professor Michael Clarke noted that the responses seem to reveal a mixture of relief and disappointment; relief that the expected cuts were not higher than 8 per cent, and disappointment that the exercise has not really settled any of the defence arguments.
The coalition government declared an increase in resources to combat cyber threats following the SDSR. Neil Thompson, director of the Office for Cyber Security, spoke of a 'step change' in the coalition government's approach to the developing threat at the Critical National Infrastructure conference hosted by RUSI.
Environmental Security in the Arctic Ocean
With the opening of new sea routes through the ever more rapidly melting ice of the Arctic Ocean, the security issues surrounding this resource rich part of the world has increased substantially over the last few years. Professor Paul Berkman wrote a Whitehall Paper for RUSI outlining the requirements for keeping peace in this most fragile and volatile of environments, which generated a substantial amount of press interest.
Terrorism and insurgency
Security levels across Europe were raised this month due to reports of an increased terrorist threat to major cities in the UK and on the Continent. Foreign Offices across the world warned their citizens about travelling to Europe and the Head of the Resilience Department at RUSI, Tobias Feakin, and senior RUSI analyst Elizabeth Quintana were asked to comment on the new terror threat emerging against Europe.