British forces will deploy to Kosovo following increasing tensions in the northern part of the country.

Tom has spent the last 13 years working in the defence industry, specifically military and commercial shipbuilding. His work has taken him around Europe and the Far East, he is currently based in Scotland.
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Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

That’s a pretty typical announcement from the government..greater commitment with less resources..it’s all very well deploying the British army all over the place in penny packets…but if your doing that you need the organisational strength to back it up….the reality is the Balkans it’s heading for another shit show that will need more and more NATO peace keepers… and you can guarantee there is one man Stirring that pot of war and ethnic cleansing in waiting….chaos in the Balkans..Serbia has just about fallen into a criminal mafia state run essentially by crime bosses. Bosnia Herzegovina is falling into disintegration along… Read more »

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Agree. Sunak and the too long in power Tories have utterly lost the plot, sleeping at the wheel and heading for a serious crash. The UK is so blindly ignoring the security threats and geopolitical situation that there is no other conclusion to be made then we will be militarily defeated at some point in the next 10 years unless the government wake up and actually perform their number 1 duty. That being the provision of our armed forces and the achievement of our national interests and protection of our allies. Failure to do so should be considered treason and… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Mr Bell, to your last point and probably the most import of geopolitical considerations…the last time the Balkans fell apart…the Soviet Union was dissolving and had no interest in anything outside of its boarders and NATO was not directly involved…..now it’s a tinderbox with NATO nations that have direct skin in the game as well as being EU nations, with EU nations all around the conflict zone…and a Russia that is playing geopolitics against NATO…that a bad place…..as it’s got the potential to create a 3-4 sided ethnic fuelled conflict right in the middle of the the EU and NATO..with… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan
Marked
Marked
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

We’ve hung drawn and quartered people who did far less damage to the country than our current government have…

Ex-Marine
Ex-Marine
1 month ago
Reply to  Marked

The sad thing is, there’s no domestic political capital in defence. The September 23 IPSOS poll didn’t have defence in the top 10 of voters priorities. That has allowed respective governments to cull our abilities. The public pay lip service to the Armed Forces and it’s people. The fact that those of us who use this platform are, have or serve/served in the UK forces or some defence related industry, gives us an interest. That interest does not translate into a voice that anyone in politics will bother themselves to hear. Jonathan, your summary of the Balkans sounds all to… Read more »

DH
DH
1 month ago
Reply to  Ex-Marine

👌👍

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago
Reply to  Marked

Agree, at a time the UK should be undertaking a crash rearmament programme and preparing for the inevitable conflict that is most certainly coming Sunak and Hunt are talking about HS2, inflation, cost of living and national debt (yes all relevant but the elephant in the room is Putin and president Xi) What price national debt if Ukraine falls and Putin moves onwards to make territorial demands against other NATO or allied countries, which he most certainly will upping the ante and threatening nuclear holocaust if we dare to stand against him? What price HS2 when a newly emboldened China… Read more »

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Some including some US senior officers, say we were militarily defeated in Iraq (Op Telic) and Afghanistan Op Herrick)

Bulkhead
Bulkhead
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan



Bulkhead
Bulkhead
1 month ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

That was suppose to be a thumbs up 😎

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

It’s ok if you have a question Bulkhead 😂😂

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Agreed we just don’t have the Boots no more 👍

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

True, bring back 3Cmdo Bde… 😉

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago

This deployment is vitally and important, prevention of a conflict being much more useful then having to fight a conflict again in the powder keg of the Balkans. The US secretary of State phoned the Serbian leadership and told him to back down, any military incursion into Kosovo is not going to be tolerated. I cant see NATO repeating its mistakes of the 1990s. Serbia is being monitored and has a restricted list of options, all requiring democracy and peaceful resolution. The trouble is Serbia is a bi-polar state, they want to join the EU and to palm off investment… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

unfortunately Serbia is now fixed down a road of an authoritarian criminal organisation led state, there is probably no way back from that. It’s actually perfect for Putin as he will bring up the defending against Nazis yet again as the poor Serbian state steps up and defends ethic Serbians against the nazi Croat nationalists…you can see the play now….

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Laughter and incredulity

Please explain how one of Serbias provinces is now occupied by Nato troops for 20 years and it isnt like Crimea where changing borders isnt to be tolerated .

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

Because Serbia provided to the world the only thing it wants to do to the Albanias living in Kosovo is kill them all through genocide…when a government decided it’s going to kill and remove a population it sort of losses the right to rule that population…unless your a believer in let the strong kill the weak. Forgive me but there were no genocides going along in Crimea..no mass graves and mass shootings…? Don’t put in moral equivalence where it does not exist. And as there is a un resolution to ensure an international presence and the safety of Kosovo (… Read more »

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

That all was 25 years or more back when Milosevic was in charge.
You are avoiding the point about it being part of Serbia and yet its Nato troops in 25 yr occupation. Like the Cyprus occupation by Turkiye its all OK when Nato does the occupying of another country – without permission

So Nato is going to intervene in Karabah in the Caucasus as the Azeris are driving the Armenians out of their ancestral homes as an ethnic cleansing

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

yes Kosovo ceded from Serbia on 2008..not because of NATO but because the Serbian and Albanian populations hate each other..NATO was and is there as part of a UN mission..that has included peacekeepers from 43 nations including Armenia, azabizjan, Switzerland, Ireland etc…its a multinational peace keeping force to prevent a genocide that is waiting to happen.

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

So its a member of UN then ? I think they have had a declaration of independence but but its not valid anymore than Crimeas was in similar circumstances. EU and Nato say borders cant be unilaterally changed – see Catalonia or Scotland , without the central government allowing “the process” The UN reolution was 1999, and yet here we are. I know the background , but why isnt UN intervening with the Armenians in the autonomous Karabah part of Azerbijan And what about Turkiyes invasion of Cyprus in 1974 . 50 years ago now. Is not EU ( its… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

did I way Kosovo was a member of the UN…no I did not I said it had ceded…as yet it’s not recognised as an independent state..the UN is there to keep the peace and prevent ethnic violence. As I noted the protections for the Kosovo population are there because of ethic cleansing…you cannot just say…ohhh that was 20 years ago and it was one man’s fault….everything that is needed for ethnic cleansing to occur is still in place in that region. Related to the Karabakh region resolutions 822 (1993), 853 (1993) and 874 (1993), all relate to UN resolutions focused… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan
Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Thanks for sharing your detailed knowledge. My point was that invasions are never on- according to current standards – but those conflicts are long ago ( Cyprus 70 yrs) and Kosovo 25 years . Greece isnt going to invade Cyprus and Turkey can be made to leave since it did. Serbia isnt the same country now as it was under Milosovic and Kosovo returned to its control and the ethnic differences managed like other countries do. The Turkish situation especially amazes me as they are in Nato all this time . Not connected here but the situation with Diego Garcia… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

To be honest, the international rules based order is always more about geopolitical power than anything else…there is and always has been a very simple law..those who win set the rules. Nations are not moral, they don’t have ethical bedrocks or feelings, nations are in-fact all entirety amoral, at best a nation follows a path of enlightened self interest ( what is good for you is good for me) and at worst are entirely focused on taking what they want….we need to be really honest with ourselves western nations are wealthy not because we worked harder than the rest of… Read more »

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

200 soldiers isn’t a Battalion, it’s a company.

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

If it had been the Royal Irish RANGERS

There is only one God
There is only, one, THE RANGERS

They would be an Army, with PARA taking notes on how to lead the way.

Alas, we hung up our Caubeens, our knees are as broken as our Officer’s Shillelaghs and the British no longer require true Rangers to roam and quell, stand and fight and show PARA true hard.

I’m sure, t b sure, PARA will be along soon t blow smoke up their own hoops, they knose, we own their arrsess.

So it is.

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

The article said that 200 soldiers would join the 400 already there. 600 soldiers is a battalion.

David
David
1 month ago

Sooner or later we should start saying no and scaling back these kind of commitments. Kosovo is a potential EU candidate state , so politically the EU should form the bulk of any support via its Nato members. Let the underpaying nations chip in, the ones who’s politicians are most vocal on EU unity, and the ones who rushed headlong into gas dependency on putin who is the one agitating here. We have forces in Estonia, forces training Ukraine troops, pivotinh to the high north theatre etc and gapping tubed artillery and other assets to supply Ukraine. I think this… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  David

To be honest David this is a NATO issue and we are a member of nato…..we have NATO member states that would potentially end up in a shooting war with Serbia ( backed by Russia) the biggest tinder box revolves around Bosnia…a nation made up of Serbians, Croats, or Bosniaks….Bosnia is heading of a civil war in which Serbia would pretty much immediately get involved with..there is no way Croatia is going to not put in peace keeping forces to protect the Croat population…at that point it just takes the Serbian armed forces…( who profoundly hate the Croats) to attack… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan
David
David
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Nato airpower would resolve the issue. I wouldn’t argue against logistics support but the fact is we are stretched to thin, and we (barely) make the 2%. The fact is eventually some hard stance is needed to force those nato members that underfund to either spend more, or resouce this missions which are in effect garrison effects.
We struggle to put a meaningful rapid reaction brigade together and have spent billions in ukr, more than the bulk of the EU. ( who again are the ones that courted ukr membership)

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  David

NATO air power would not resolve the issue….you don’t resolve a cesspool or ethic hatred by bombing everything that moves…it’s not worked in Syria and it did not work in Libya..air power is a hammer….before NATO used that a lot of people would have died and these nations in the middle of Europe and NATO would become failed states with all that means for security…you cannot AirPower everything that’s hubris. Unfortunately just going well others are not spending 2% and sulking in the corner or building a shiny rapid reaction. Force and buffing it up…will mean sod all if we… Read more »

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  David

its closer to 2.5%. Whos your statistician ?

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

yeah but more by sleight of hand courtesy of Mssr’s Osborne & ‘Dave’.
Boots on the ground have been vastly reduced over the years with no sight of any reversal on that front.

Last edited 1 month ago by grizzler
Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

When you remove the creative accounting we probably spend about 1.9%

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham M

Ive looked into – such that someone like me can see . Its not too bad.
But Im sure you have some specific details to share ?

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

Prior to George Osbourne, spending on the independent nuclear deterrent was borne directly by the Treasury, not MoD. I guess he got windy about the upcoming CAPEX on Dreadnought as well as ongoing maintenence on the current boats/missiles and directed the MoD ie Navy to budget for it – which is quite a stretch for them and has clearly impacted on funding for conventionally weaponed naval vessels. Some Intelligence is now funded by Defence whereas I think it was the Foreign Office before – details are hard to come by!! Some say that Veterans pensions do not contribute to Defence… Read more »

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham M

Not at all. You have got it garbled. Its always been a defence budget item, but then it became a Navy only allocation. They were given extra money at the time but costs rise faster

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

My references were: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-10812825 “The full £20bn cost of renewing the UK’s Trident nuclear deterrent must be paid for by the Ministry of Defence, George Osborne has said. Traditionally, the Treasury has always found the money for the submarines”. Wikipedia: “In July 2010, whilst seeking cuts of up to 25 per cent in government spending to tackle the deficit, Osborne insisted the £20 billion cost of building four new Vanguard-class submarines to bear Trident missiles had to be considered as part of the Ministry of Defence‘s core funding, even if that implied a severe reduction in the rest of the Ministry’s budget. Liam Fox, the Secretary of State… Read more »

Duker
Duker
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham M

Thanks for that background . However I would disagree with BBCs and many others ( inc some Defence secretaries) muddled background info This House of Commons research briefing – from experts- says differently https://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/CBP-8166/CBP-8166.pdf pages 21 , 22, 23 The longstanding debate over budgetary responsibility In 2007 a disagreement erupted between the MOD and the Treasury over the funding of the capital costs of the replacement programme. The MOD suggested that the capital costs of procuring the nuclear deterrent had, in the past, been borne by the Treasury, a position which the Treasury refuted.However, the Ministry of Defence issued a… Read more »

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Duker

Many thanks. It was clearly an urban myth that HM Treasury directly funded the nuclear deterrent, but one believed by many.

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  David

 The request came from Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) and was approved by the North Atlantic Council (NAC). We are in NATO – you don’t turn down SACEUR and the NAC.

I don’t see your EU point. This is NATO business not the EU’s.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago

Let’s hope the 400 troops are being sent there with proper equipment in case things go south. Serbia has been moving heavy equipment to the border and there are rumours of them being put on heightened readiness. Serbia won’t be stupid enough to directly take on NATO troops but if the shooting starts, mistakes will happen.

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Any actions being undertaken by Serbia will be directed against the Armed Forces of Kosovo,which now seem very unlikely,any NATO Troops being deployed will be there purely as Peacekeepers.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

When Serbia is moving heavy hardware into the area, peacekeeping will be impossible without equal capability being available if needed

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Peacekeeping is only possible when there is a peace to keep.

Otherwise we are a talking about Peace enforcement operations.

https://www.inclusivesecurity.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/38_peace_support.pdf

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham M

Yeah but a key part of peacekeeping is deterence or your not doing anything normally in an african peacekeeping operation soldiers with their personal weapons is enough for that deterance, but here we are talking about the peace potentialy being broken by heavy weapons. First time around warrior’s were deployed to show the UN meant business.

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

I too am concerned about our guys being light role and probably unprotected by Warriors or even PM vehicles – and also not able to do a ‘Show of Force’ effectively.
Did someone in MoD do a Risk Assessment?

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

1PWRR are light role infantry!

Graham M
Graham M
1 month ago

The last time we were on a UN mission in the Balkans the Infantry were in Warriors. 1PWRR are light role infantry – I presume they are in soft-skinned vehicles? Is that right?

DH
DH
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham M

Hi GM, boy I really get the feeling of dejavu again. 90’s wasn’t good. Ethnic cleansing was really rife!!😞