The United States and Chinese navies have just narrowly avoided a dangerous collision. This was not an accident but an escalation, a show of force on the part of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) to drive out the US Navy from what China considers its territorial waters in the South China Sea.
The US administration pretends that its decision to withdraw from the nuclear deal with Iran is a radically new approach which may change the entire regional strategic equation, similar to the huge policy reversal towards China executed by President Nixon in the early 1970s. But the Trump White House will be disappointed; the comparisons with Nixon are misconceived.
An independent, government-commissioned report to inform Britain’s national shipbuilding strategy makes very pertinent recommendations, but it fails to bridge the divide between economic considerations and operational requirements.
US President-elect Donald Trump’s preference for retired and serving generals for leading positions in his administration is controversial and has stimulated a renewed debate about the nature of the civil–military relationship.
The RAF’s acquisition of the RC-135 ‘Airseeker’ represented a deliberate effort by both the RAF and US Air Force to set the conditions for further integration. The current lack of greater progress on this vision will represent a lost opportunity for both air forces that will only serve to drive up operating costs.