UK Hard Power: Strategic Ambivalence
On a comparative scale, the United Kingdom remains a significant military power with significant operational experience. Since the Cold War’s end, Britain has attempted to adapt to a more complex set of security problems while simultaneously cutting force structure. As a result, the United Kingdom’s strategic vision has shrunk: it has increasingly adopted a preference for military operations that are far away, fairly small, or relatively brief. The United Kingdom must be clear in its direction – either it will accept a managed decline of its hard power and devote itself to smaller, smarter, technologically savvier strategy, or it must attempt to reverse course by expanding conventional forces. The former is more likely than the latter, but either option is better than strategic ambivalence.