Defence in the media: Friday 10 March 2017

Today’s defence related news includes coverage of yesterday’s unveiling of the Iraq and Afghanistan Memorial by Her Majesty The Queen, and the naming of HMS Forth.

Iraq and Afghanistan Memorial

There is widespread coverage in today’s print of the unveiling of the Iraq Afghanistan Memorial yesterday. Articles reflect that the memorial pays a fitting tribute to the men and women who served. Coverage is carried in The Times, The Telegraph, The Guardian, The Sun, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, Daily Express, Daily Star, The Independent. Papers carry a host of images from the drumhead service on Horse Guards Parade, and the memorial unveiling outside the MOD.

Secretary of State for Defence Sir Michael Fallon said:

It is vital that we recognise our Armed Forces and civilians who contributed, both abroad and at home, to the campaigns in the Gulf, Iraq and Afghanistan. Today’s service is an appropriate occasion to honour their immense efforts and sacrifices. We should also reflect on the continued service of the men and women of our Armed Forces deployed around the world today to help make us safer at home.

You can read more about the Iraq and Afghanistan Memorial here. 

Imagery from the ceremony is available here.

The Defence Secretary’s message on the unveiling can be read here.

HMS Forth

There is reporting this morning in Scottish media that the first of a fleet of five warships being built on the Clyde has been formally named HMS Forth. Articles feature in The Herald, The Scotsman, The Times, Evening Times, Falkirk Herald, and follows on from reporting yesterday on HMS Forth, including by BBC News online, STV, The Scotsman, Evening Express and Navy News. Coverage reflects that the ship is expected to go into service next year, and will be used for counter-terrorism, anti-smuggling and defence. Articles also reflect that the MOD has said work on HMS Forth and her sister ships will sustain 800 Scottish jobs.

Minister for Defence Procurement, Harriett Baldwin, said:

As part of a sustained programme delivering world-class ships and submarines, HMS Forth’s naming is a vitally important part of the Government’s ten-year £178 billion plan to provide our Armed Forces with the equipment they need.

From counter-narcotics operations in the Caribbean, to securing the UK’s borders on patrols closer to home, the Royal Navy’s new Offshore Patrol Vessels will help protect our interests around the world.

You can read more about HMS Forth here.


There is follow-up this morning to yesterday’s speculation that the US has sent several hundred Marines to Syria. Coverage is carried in The Telegraph, The Times, FT, The Guardian and The Independent.

You can read more about UK airstrikes in Iraq and Syria here.

Image of the day

Her Majesty The Queen, accompanied by The Duke of Edinburgh, attended a Service of Dedication and unveiled the new memorial in Victoria Embankment Gardens, which honours the service and duty of both the UK Armed Forces and civilians in the Gulf region, Iraq and Afghanistan, and those who supported them back home, from 1990-2015. Crown Copyright.
Her Majesty The Queen unveils the Iraq and Afghanistan Memorial in Embankment Gardens yesterday.