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Formal meeting (oral evidence session): Defence concepts and capabilities: from aspiration to reality

International Relations and Defence Committee
Defence concepts and capabilities: from aspiration to reality

Wednesday 11 May 2022

Start times: 10.30am (private) 10.30am (public)


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Committee continues inquiry into UK Defence strategy and capabilities

The House of Lords International Relations and Defence Committee will continue taking oral evidence for its new inquiry, “Defence concepts and capabilities: from aspiration to reality”. They will hear from four experts in defence and security.

 

The Committee will ask questions about the extent to which the UK's defence capabilities match the ambitions outlined in the Integrated Review and Defence Command Paper, both published in 2021. They will also ask about the drivers and implications of the announced increase in the UK's nuclear warhead stockpile ceiling, and the extent to which Russia's invasion of Ukraine poses challenges to the Government's Defence strategy.

Meeting details

At 10.30am: Oral evidence
Inquiry Defence concepts and capabilities: from aspiration to reality
Professor at The University of Birmingham
Emeritus Professor of War Studies at King's College London
At 11.30am: Oral evidence
Inquiry Defence concepts and capabilities: from aspiration to reality
Professor at Open University
Deputy Director (Defence) at RAND Europe

Possible questions:

  • What do you consider to be the main messages of the Defence Command Paper, and were any of these unexpected? To what extent does the Defence Command Paper respond to the goals set by the Integrated Review?
  • The Integrated Review announced a change to the UK’s overall nuclear warhead stockpile ceiling from no more than 180 by the mid-2020s to no more than 260 warheads. What are drivers and the implications of this policy? What should be the ‘minimum’ level of the UK the UK’s nuclear warhead stockpile to make the independent nuclear deterrent credible?
  • The Defence Command Paper talks about a model of ‘Persistent Engagement’ being ‘at the heart of our new approach to tasks overseas’ but does not give a clear definition of it. How would you interpret it? What might such a model look like, in particular in the Indo-Pacific?
  • The ‘tilt’ to the Indo-Pacific was one of the most prominent aspects of the Integrated Review and the Defence Command Paper. What should be the UK’s defence priorities in Asia?
  • Do you think that European defence and deterrence should be redefined in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine? What do you expect to see in NATO’s next Strategic Concept?

Location

Room 4A, Palace of Westminster

How to attend