Ed. The fourth article in our series from BRNC Pellew Division officer cadets, here the author considers the potential implications for world trade as the Arctic sea routes become increasingly viable. The Royal Navy has a role to play, but faces strategic diversions that marginalize the development of a long-term Arctic strategy. A 10 minute read.
Ed. The author explores the PQ17 disaster, questioning First Sea Lord Dudley Pound’s decision to scatter the convoy in the face of Luftwaffe and Kriegsmarine threats. The principles of mission command should have left the decision to the convoy commanders. A 25 minute read.
Ed. To everyone who contributed to the Naval Review over the last 12 months, from our regulars to our first time authors and correspondents, our band of dedicated book reviewers and contributors on the Forum, along with those who have taken the trouble to pass feedback, both good and bad, along to those who help me deliver the Naval Review, especially the Trustees, Secretary Treasurer in particular, and the Editorial team, may I offer a heartfelt thank you and wish all our readership a Happy and prosperous New Year.
Ed. Courtesy of the Royal Navy Strategic Studies Centre: The conflict in Yemen has renewed the need for maritime security in the Persian Gulf and Red Sea, and has demonstrated both the reach of China as an emerging Middle Eastern player, but also the limits of the PRC’s diplomacy. An increasingly destabilizing Iran raises questions about where other regional and international actors will ultimately align. A 5 minute read.
Ed. A summary of the UK Coastal Security and Communities conference that was co-hosted by the RN Strategic Studies Centre and the University of Portsmouth in April 2023. The author expands upon the major themes that were discussed, making the connection between technology, the environment, and the United Kingdom’s coastal communities. A 10 minute read.
Ed. In his analysis of strategic lessons to be drawn from the Second World War [40/4. p. 432], Captain S. W. Roskill, RN, wrote, “It took much ‘sad experience’ to show that Malta could have been properly defended and could have been kept in use as a base.” Roger Plumtree reconsiders the Maltese narrow margin with the question in mind: was Roskill wrong? A 15 minute read.
Ed. The author examines the leadership styles of Vice Admiral Sir Peter Gretton, Captain Donald Macintyre, and Captain Frederick ‘Johnny’ Walker during their Battle of the Atlantic convoy commands. Cultivating a high degree of trust among well-trained officers and crews enabled battle-winning delegation and initiative to develop. A 40 minute read.
Ed. David Waters concluded his 1995-1996 series of reflections on the Battle of the Atlantic [84/2 & 84/3] by returning to the question of convoy ‘laws’ and his concern that ideological assumptions and abstract thought concerning future operations would once again take precedence over the scientific conclusions he had reached forty years before. A 25 minute read.
Ed. In this second instalment of his reflections on the Battle of the Atlantic [84/1, p. 68], former Naval Staff historian David Waters, wary of the pernicious abuses of language so frequent in military affairs, asked the difficult question of why the convoy lessons of the First World War were not learnt before the Second. Republished here as part of the 80th Anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic. A 20 minute read.