Defence in the Media: 12 January 2018

Today's defence related news includes speculation on the outcome of the National Security Capability Review and reporting on plans to mark 100 years of the Royal Air Force this year.

National Security Capability Review speculation

The Times leads with a front page story speculating on options for the National Security Capability Review (NSCR). The article was also followed up in The Mirror, The Sun and the Daily Mail further linking to backbench business debate on defence in the House of Commons yesterday.

An MOD spokesperson said:

A whole range of options have been discussed as part of the cross-government review on how to best protect our country. No decisions have been taken and any talk of an outcome is pure speculation.

Plans to commemorate 100 years of the Royal Air Force - RAF100

The Daily Mail reports that Chief of Air Staff, Sir Stephen Hillier has called on teenagers playing on their Xbox at home to take gaming to the next level by operating real drones. The piece says that Sir Stephen Hillier has said that the next 100 years will see a huge shift towards unmanned systems, with this year's RAF 100 anniversary set to see a range of celebratory events.

Chief of Air Staff, Sir Stephen Hillier's statement:

RAF100 will commemorate the precious legacy of extraordinary success, achievement and sacrifice that is at the heart of the proud tradition and ethos our Service - something which continues to inspire us all today.

"We will also celebrate the professionalism of today’s Royal Air Force, which is airborne every hour of every day, protecting the United Kingdom’s interests at home and abroad - whether safeguarding the skies of Britain, or bringing about the defeat of Daesh in Iraq and Syria, or bringing relief to hurricane victims in the Caribbean.

"And, perhaps most importantly of all, we will, as we have always done, aim to inspire the next generation through the deeds of our people. Our focus has always been on the future, and the legacy of RAF100 will be a launch pad into our next century. So we will ignite young people’s passion for air, space, and cyber through a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Design and Mathematics programme which reaches out to students from all backgrounds, demonstrating that we are, as we have always been,  a dynamic engine of social mobility, where we are open to all and everyone can fulfil their true potential.

Self harm statistics

The Telegraph reports on self harm statistics in the armed forces which were released yesterday.

An MOD spokesperson said:

While reported rates of deliberate self harm in the Armed Forces are low, we take every case extremely seriously. We are absolutely committed to the mental fitness of our troops and have a range of support available to ensure personnel get the help they need.

Image of the day


A Sea King from 849, carries out a Helicopter In Flight Refuelling (HIFR) adjacent the deck of HMS MONTROSE off the coast of Bahrain.