Defense Research Unit
Western armies today face a triple challenge. First, they have been involved in “wars amongst populations” for twenty-five years, having to cope with failed states, fractured societies, and irregular adversaries. Counterinsurgency (COIN) may be out of fashion, but stabilization operations remain as complex as ever. Whether for maintaining peace or countering an insurrection, military intervention cannot deliver victory on its own, yet other “global approach” actors are often either absent or ineffective, not to mention the lack of political support and the constraints posed by permanent pressure from the media.
Meanwhile, Western forces must retain the ability to conduct high-intensity operations when fighting symmetric or hybrid adversaries that benefit from training and advanced weapons. The constituent parts of military transformation tend to spread to regional powers. Accordingly, our defense systems have to stay in the technological race and incorporate into their equipments and doctrines the multiple innovations fostered by progress in intelligence gathering and miniaturisation (sensors, networks, robotics, precision ammunition, etc.).
Remaining full spectrum is also a challenge as our militaries face unprecedented constraints in terms of numbers and budgets. in addition, operational tempo has increased and enemies have toughened. The armed forces are thus being asked to achieve more with less. The political and budgetary context, especially in Europe, is likely to limit the size of militaries and the conditions of their use. It is therefore necessary in the short term to offer solutions for optimization and set the stage for a necessary military build up in the future. The LRD’s analysis focuses on French forces first and foremost, as well as the militaries of their main allies.
The ability to penetrate remote and contested theaters of operation is a crucial asset for any expeditionary military power.
As Democratic Republic of Korea’s (DPRK) continuous development of non-conventional weapons and challenges of the international community reaches a new level, Republic of Korea (ROK) appears more than ever as the frontline state on which most of North-East Asia security depends.
As the prospect of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union raises increasing challenges to its international position, as well as major divisions at home, the future of British defense policy seems more uncertain than ever.
La survivabilité sur le champ de bataille : entre technologie et manœuvre Focus stratégique, No. 72, March 2017
The concept of survivability is central to the design of combat vehicles and to the elaboration of doctrines for the employment of military forces.
Les mutations du renseignement militaire : dissiper le brouillard de la guerre ? Focus stratégique, No. 71, January 2017
Military intelligence has evolved significantly as a result of advanced technology and the changing character of war.
Operation Sangaris: A Case Study in Limited Military Intervention Military Review, Vol. 96, No 6, November-December 2016
The French Army's Sangaris Operation in Central African Republic proved successful despite it being first undermined.
The 2015 terror attacks in France and the ensuing activation by the Ministry of Defense of its homeland protection plan opened a new phase in the long history of the French Army’s involvement in internal security.
Retours sur Sangaris. Entre stabilisation et protection des civils Focus stratégique, No. 67, April 2016
In December 2013, France launched its operation Sangaris in the Central African Republic. What conclusions can be drawn for the stabilization of the country and the protection of civilians?