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British Chief of Staff warns of “reckless” actions by Russia, China and Iran

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Mark Wood

Mark served in the Marine Corps as a Lance corporal before retiring to spend time with his wife and young son. Today, he works part-time in construction and has numerous hobbies that keep him active. He founded Cole of Duty to write about military news around the world. He loves to discuss politics and the US budget, often debating with his wife and coworkers about who ought to be elected in 2020.

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Mark Wood

If history sometimes gives the impression of repeating itself, it is probably because we do not draw lessons from it that one should and therefore, one is called to make the same mistakes. This is, at least, what General Nick Carter, the British Chief of the Defense Staff, thinks when he points out in the columns of the Sunday Telegraph the importance of the duty of the Memorial.

“The crisis of July 1914 caused by the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand degenerated into widespread conflict following a complex network of alliances and a series of erroneous calculations by leaders who thought they could control hostilities. Hence the importance of history,” said General Carter.

Obviously, the current situation has nothing to do with the situation that prevailed over a century ago. Yet, for the British Chief of Staff, the world is not immune to a “miscalculation” with potentially devastating consequences.

“Ambitious states like Russia, China and Iran are asserting themselves in a way that is a challenge to our security, stability, and prosperity. And this is compounded by the threat of non-state actors like Daesh, who use terrorism to undermine our way of life,” said General Carter.

With regard to the three countries he cited, General Carter explained that they operated “in the gray zone,” with “new alternative weapons” such as cyberattacks, the dissemination of false information or by resorting to private military companies. They “undermine our political cohesion and insidiously destroy our way of life,” he accused, before pointing more specifically to the actions of Moscow.

“Russia is much safer than it was ten years ago. It now has confidence when it asserts itself as a world power,” noted General Carter, taking some examples, such as the activities of the private military society “Wagner” in Africa, the new disinformation tactics in the part of a recent campaign revealed by Facebook or the actions of the “Russkiy Mir” foundation, which were recently investigated by the daily newspaper Daily Maverick in South Africa.

“I do not suggest that our opponents want to go to war in the traditional definition of the term, but imprudent behavior and lack of respect for international law related to these new alternative weapons may cause escalation that could easily lead to a mistake in inadvertent calculation,” warned General Carter.

In this context, the British defense chief wanted to “recall that the security guarantee provided by NATO is essential to maintain the freedom of European democracies” since “history and geography show that our security and stability have always been and will remain mutually dependent.”

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