Today Jim Murphy MP is outlining Labour’s approach to ‘preventative intervention’, learning the lessons from the past and preparing for the future.
The key features of preventative intervention are below.
• Establish adaptable Army units who would focus on cultural embedding and conflict-prevention at the invitation of at-risk nations, tasked with training, stabilisation, policing and combat-prevention.
• Greater training of UK Forces in languages (almost 60 languages are spoken in North and West African states. West Africa is one of the few places where French has parity with English. According to MoD figures of the 145,000 members of UK Forces none speak Nigerian or Ga, one speaks Portuguese, just 78 speak Arabic and only 101 speak French. Linguists and military intelligence were highlighted as ‘pinch points’ in the 2012 MoD Annual Report).
• Greater training of UK Forces in cultural understanding, situational awareness and a wider range of humanitarian skills.
• Strong supportive expeditionary capability and enablers, including C4-ISTAR, naval resources, unmanned technology, helicopters, airlift and close air support.
• Boosting civilian skills, including gearing Defence Intelligence to new threats and using UK citizens around the world through the Reserves.
• Greater training of overseas Forces, with ‘Sandhurst in the Sand’ replicated elsewhere, coordinated by the UK alongside our allies.
• Examining a supplement of additional places for at-risk nations’ future leaders at Sandhurst, Dartmouth and Cranwell, as well as the Royal College of Defence Studies and the UK Defence Academy.
• A more strategic, leading role for the National Security Council in co-ordinating the diplomatic, developmental and defence efforts as part of the UK security strategy.
• Proactively helping to build the capabilities and encourage the participation of regional multilateral groups such as the African Union, ECOWAS and Arab League.
• Unifying European NATO nations around the principles of preventative intervention in a commitment to modernising deployable forces.