The Strategic Defence & Security Review (SDSR): A Brave New World for UK Defence and Security

The Coalition Government's spearheading of the Strategic Defence & Security Review (SDSR) comes at a time of widespread transformation in the defence and security sectors. Decisions made in upcoming months will heavily impact not only short term strategic planning in Afghanistan. They will also shape the structure and function of essential security roles currently filled by the Royal Air Force, the Royal Navy, and the Army. Inevitably, strategising solutions to fiscal limitations within the tri-service arena will affect significant touchstones of UK defence - from NATO to Trident to expeditionary deployments.

"My Government will fully support our courageous armed forces and undertake a full Strategic Defence and Security Review."
- Queen’s Speech, 25 May 2010

At this time there is nothing more critical than understanding the choices and challenges that face the UK MoD as these decisions are made. The Green Paper published on 3rd February 2010 laid out some key areas that will help frame the Review:

  • Given that domestic security cannot be separated from international security, where should we set the balance between focusing on our territory and region and engaging threats at a distance?
  • What approach should we take if we employ the Armed Forces to address threats at distance?
  • What contribution should the Armed Forces make in ensuring security and contributing to resilience within the UK?
  • How could we more effectively employ the Armed Forces in support of wider efforts to prevent conflict and strengthen international stability?
  • Do our current international defence and security relationships require rebalancing in the longer term?
  • Should we further integrate our forces with those of key allies and partners?
  • To what extent and in what areas should we continue to refocus our current efforts on Afghanistan?

These issues and more will be discussed in Defence IQ’s exclusive Webinar. Listen to high ranking experts within the UK Defence Community discuss the strategic implications for the UK military and for national security, as a whole. Join us in the discussion - post your comments and interact with others on our Defence IQ Networking forum .

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