UK National Security Strategy: 100 days old

by | Jun 27, 2008


(Updated 26 July 2008)

By my estimation the UK’s national security strategy is 100 days old. So what initiatives from the UK NSS have gained traction? What ideas have been quietly dropped? And what proposals are still hanging around in the ether?

In his statement to the House of Commons Gordon Brown listed the following:

1. The publication of first a ever cross-departmental strategy for supporting service personnel, their families and veterans. To be published in mid/ late July (my guess Thursday 17th July)

2. Increase the the number of security service personnel by 4000. Ongoing but growth constrained by training capacity

3. A 10 per cent increase in resources for the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre To be confirmed – relatively easy to do.

4. Set aside funds to modernise GCHQ’s interception capability. To be confirmed

5. Publication of a national register of risks.  Published soon

6. The creation of a National Security Forum. NSF will be a NDPB. See here for details

7. Introduction of a resolution in both Houses that enshrines an enhanced scrutiny and public role for the Intelligence and Security Committee. No obvious sighting – to be confirmed

8 & 9. A new bargain to non-nuclear powers and an international conference on the related issues later this year. No news – unless conference was this one (which I don’ think it was)

10. The creation of a standby international civilian capability for fragile and failing states (Brown commits 1000-strong UK civilians including police, emergency service professionals, judges and trainers). No news

11. Between now and 2011 £600 million for conflict prevention, resolution and stabilisation work around the world, including in Israel and Palestine, Darfur, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq and Afghanistan, Kenya and the Balkans. Not new money but I think a repeat announcement from last year’s Comprehensive Spending Review.

12. Britain to pay for 850 Burundian troops as part of the African Union peacekeeping force. Confirmed

13. Creation of an integrated civilian-military headquarters headed by a civilian in Helmand. To be confirmed

14. 30 per cent Increase in Foreign Office staff to Middle East and South Asia. Ongoing

15. Creation of a UK wide civil protection force. (Initiative seems to have been dropped)

If I have missed any initiatives out/ or you know things have changed please post a comment.

Author

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    Charlie Edwards is Director of National Security and Resilience Studies at the Royal United Services Institute. Prior to RUSI he was a Research Leader at the RAND Corporation focusing on Defence and Security where he conducted research and analysis on a broad range of subject areas including: the evaluation and implementation of counter-violent extremism programmes in Europe and Africa, UK cyber strategy, European emergency management, and the role of the internet in the process of radicalisation. He has undertaken fieldwork in Iraq, Somalia, and the wider Horn of Africa region.


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