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UK MoD Integrated Review Launched

14 Sep 20. The Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy will define the government’s vision for the UK’s role in the world over the next decade.

The UK’s departure from the European Union is an opportunity to define and strengthen our place in the world at a time when the global landscape is changing dramatically, including as a result of COVID-19.

To achieve this, the Government has launched the Integrated Review, an ambitious initiative which will:

  • define the Government’s ambition for the UK’s role in the world and the long-term strategic aims for our national security and foreign policy
  • set out the way in which the UK will be a problem-solving and burden-sharing nation
  • set a strong direction for recovery from COVID-19, at home and overseas, so that together we can “build back better”.

The Review will cover all aspects of international and national security policy, such as defence, diplomacy, development and national resilience.

The Integrated Review is being led by the Prime Minister with the National Security Council, and is a whole-of-government effort with colleagues from across Departments, including Defence, contributing. The guiding principle of the Integrated Review is to ask ourselves what the threat is and whether we have the capability to meet it.

Threats the UK will face

On September 11th the UK’s Chief of Defence Intelligence commented on threats the UK will face in coming decades. Lieutenant-General Jim Hockenhull looks to the future, outlining the changing character of the threat and the role of UK Defence.

The UK’s adversaries are developing new ways of operating, backed up by cutting edge military capabilities that leverage advanced technologies, the Chief of Defence Intelligence today warns.

In the first ever media briefing at Defence Intelligence’s Cambridgeshire base, Lt Gen Hockenhull has said that the shifting global picture has changed the character of warfare in ways that will challenge the West to keep pace with adversaries who do not play by the rules.

Global players such as Russia and China continually challenge the existing order without prompting direct conflict, operating in the expanding grey-zone between war and peacetime.

Conflict is bleeding into new domains, such as cyber and space, threatening our cohesion, our resilience and our global interests.

Chief of Defence Intelligence, Lieutenant-General Jim Hockenhull said:

Whilst conventional threats remain, we have seen our adversaries invest in Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and other ground-breaking technologies, whilst also supercharging more traditional techniques of influence and leverage.

As we have seen in Salisbury, hostile states are willing to take incredible risks. We must make sure that we have both the intent and the capability to ensure that such wanton acts of irresponsibility will not go unpunished.

Traditionally more comfortable in the shadows, Defence Intelligence [DI] have been brought to the fore by recent developments. Tasked with watching for global instability, tracking threats to the UK and monitoring human rights violations, amongst other things, analysts at DI provide advice to senior officials, shaping the Government’s approach to emerging threats and supporting UK forces deployed across the globe.

DI are already well placed to make this shift. Operating the world’s only fully integrated TOP SECRET collaboration centre, they are already working closely with 5 Eyes partners and other allied intelligence agencies.

Moreover, in their support to the Coronavirus response, they have already proved their agility and adaptability when faced with new challenges. Possessing the UK’s sole strategic medical intelligence capability, they rapidly shifted focus the Covid Assessment Team, or CAT. This moved their analysts from tasks such as assessing the UK’s overseas medical capabilities and understanding bio-hacking, to assessing the current and future threat posed by COVID-19. (Source: https://www.gov.uk/)

BATTLESPACE Comment: It will be interesting to see which pending contracts such as Challenger 2 LEP, Ajax, Warrior CSP,  Boxer, MRV(P), Land Ceptor, Type 26, Type 31, SkyNet 6, Morpheus, Wedgetail and other contracts progress through Main Gate and IAB during the Review. Previous Reviews have seen a stop in many projects causing delays of years in some cases.

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