Archive: News & Articles

A Profile of Terrorist Activity on European Soil: The Vienna Attack and Balkan Connections

Since 2013, the rising trend of terrorist incidents in EU countries has traced a vicious cycle of twisted ideologies where each act feeds on another’s aftermath, thus creating a virtual community of hatred. While it is one more battle won on the terrorists’ list, the attack in Vienna on 2 November 2020 reflects once again […]

SNMCMG1 Command Changes

In a ceremony held remotely by video teleconference on 14 January 2021, Commander Audrius Venckunas (Lithuanian Navy) handed over the command of Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group One (SNMCMG1) to Commander Jan Wijchers (Royal Netherlands Navy). During the seven months of Lithuanian command: SNMCMG1 covered almost 10,000 nautical miles. flew the NATO flag and contributed […]

ThinKom Completes Tests

ThinKom Solutions, Inc. has recently completed successful over-the-air tests of a pair of 17-inch active diametre K/Q-band phased-array antennas communicating through an Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellite. The tests verified that the antenna, based on ThinKom’s patented Variable Inclination Continuous Transverse Stub (VICTS) architecture, meets or exceeds all performance metrics for operating effectively with the […]

Italy’s Defence Multi-Year Planning Document 2020-2022

The release of the Italian MoD’s Multi-Year Planning Document 2020-2022 (Documento Programmatico Pluriennale or DPP 2020-2022) last October and the related discussion in Parliament underscores the level of attention paid to defence planning and funding despite the challenges and budget restrictions caused by the economic crisis resulting from the pandemic. The Parliament’s authorisation of the […]

Equipping Medical Responders for CBRN Scenarios

Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) threats are considered differently from conventional “kinetic” threats for many reasons, both in the defence and counterterrorism settings. A key principle behind categorising these threats differently is that they cause injuries and illnesses significantly different from bullets and bombs. Until the 20th century, disease generally killed more soldiers in […]

Protecting NATO’s Northern Approaches

Governments who operate according to different standards are seeking to exploit opportunities in order to impose their own set of values on the future development and governance of the Arctic region. Writing an article about NATO’s northern approaches and how to protect the Arctic seems an almost impossible task given the ever-increasing interest in the […]

The Art of Electronic Eavesdropping

Signals intelligence (SIGINT) is the general term for the interception of signals. It has two main components – Communications Intelligence (COMINT) and Electronic Signals Intelligence (ELINT). As its designation suggests, COMINT involves the interception and analysis of communications between organisations, military units, and individuals. One subset of COMINT is traffic analysis – a process that […]

“I would like to see the EU to take full responsibility for its maritime dimension”

With the new 2019-2024 European Commission came a change in its structure. Reinforcing the EU’s defence capacities as an area of priority, the department of the Commission responsible for EU policy on defence industry and space, DG DEFIS, was established. ESD had the opportunity to speak with Vice Admiral Hervé Bléjean, Director General of the […]

Pivot to Asia – Europe’s Declining Significance from a Geo-Strategic Perspective

No sooner had Donald Trump and his Secretary of Defence Mark Esper announced the withdrawal of some 12,000 US soldiers, than commentators in Germany were largely in agreement: the step, according to public opinion, was a “campaign of revenge” against the renegade NATO member Germany. In fact, there has been a lot of pent-up friction […]

Europe Builds up Fleets of 8×8

An increasing number of countries in Europe have now purchased new fleets of wheeled Armoured Fighting Vehicles (AFV) in the 8×8 configuration. In some cases, these have replaced tracked AFV while other countries have deployed a mix of tracked and wheeled AFVs. When compared to their tracked counterparts, wheeled AFV have a number of advantages […]

Armoured Vehicles from Eastern Europe

In addition to ongoing counterinsurgency operations in Africa and the Middle East, recent trends point to the possibility for a greater conflict in the future between equal rivals in view of worsening relations between NATO, Russia and China. In the event of such a conflict, the use of armoured vehicles will be key since it […]

Limitations on Defence Imports to India

India is the world’s second largest arms importer. Will a ban on defence imports be enough to boost its defence industry, making it self-reliant? Can it duplicate the success of indigenous buying programmes witnessed in the USA, China, Russia and across Europe? Emblazoned on India’s sovereign flag is a spinning wheel. It is there as […]

The True Nature of Sino-Russian Relations

The oft-repeated mantra praising a special and comprehensive strategic partnership in Sino-Russia relations is more often heard from the Russian side than the Chinese. While Russia is certainly viewed by Beijing as a reliable economic and trade partner with its oil, gas and arms exports to China, the Chinese do not overemphasise this relationship. Instead, […]

BrahMos Missile Developments Coming

Yury Laskin Tests of several modifications to the BrahMos cruise missile to extend its range are planned for 2020, one of Russia’s top defence industries officials announced at the ARMY-2020 Forum. India, with whom Russia developed the missile, is among the top exhibitors at the show, having a strong national pavilion. In June, the BrahMos […]

The Brussels Backdrop – President Trump And NATO: A Mid-Term Review

President Trump has been in office for two years now. In the previous Brussels Backdrop, we covered President Trump as a person and his statements on NATO before becoming president. In this Brussels Backdrop, we will assess US foreign policy under Trump and his course of action towards NATO and the European allies. Is NATO […]

Viewpoint from Prague – Current Threats in the Cyber World

We are living in fascinating times we could not even imagine just a few years ago. And we enjoy freedom: We can buy products in our cities that were made on the other side of the world. We can travel almost anytime and anywhere, we can communicate almost free of charge with anyone on the […]

Viewpoint From Edinburgh – Scotland’s Take On Brexit

If the UK’s contortions over Brexit were portrayed in art form, something by Hieronymus Bosch might provide a useful model. At the time of writing, British MPs have voted twice (possibly more by the time you read this) to reject the deal that Theresa May’s Government agreed with the EU last November; they have also […]

Viewpoint From Belfast – The Irish Border Poll: We Need Facts

Military expediency dictated that Britain retained an interest in having a foothold in Ireland for many centuries. But on 9 November 1990, Peter Brooke, the then Northern Ireland (NI) Secretary of State, declared that Britain had “no longer any selfish, strategic or economic interest” in NI and would accept unification.” The Good Friday Agreement (GFA) […]

Viewpoint From Dublin – Brexit: It Is Such A Pity

There are any number of ways to gauge the mood of the ordinary man and woman in the street, and, frequently, the most accurate is the most unsophisticated – listening to them where you meet them, on trains, taxis, and in public places. The talk in Ireland today is about many things, and just one […]

Viewpoint From London – The Headwinds Of Brexit Uncertainty

At the time of writing this viewpoint only two weeks remain before the United Kingdom is officially due to leave the European Union. There is still no clarity as to how, when or even if departure will take place. The resulting political crisis speaks volumes about the inadequacy of Britain’s political class to deal with […]

Cyber Defence: NATO’s Challenges

With our societies increasingly dependent on modern information technologies, rapidly evolving cyber threats pose a growing threat. NATO will have to find a response. Since the 1990s, billions of people worldwide have been using information and communication technologies (ICT). The Internet has evolved from a simple information exchange platform to the backbone of modern economies […]

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