• Is Russia Using Laser Weapon in Ukraine

    Last Wednesday, a top Kremlin official said that Russia has deployed an advanced laser weapons system in combat in Ukraine. Laser weapons, if they are usable, could help Moscow against one of its main menaces in Ukraine: Drones. Several countries, including Russia, have been working on developing laser weapons, but experts say it is not clear whether Russia’s R&D efforts have so far yielded an operational weapon.

  • European Academics Helping China's Military

    European researchers have cooperated with China’s National University of Defense Technology (NUDT). The NUDT’s purpose is to “Strengthen the Armed Forces and the Nation.” An investigation by 10 European news outlets has found nearly 3,000 scientific publications by researchers affiliated with European universities and their counterparts at military-linked institutions in China — most notably the NUDT.

  • What Went Wrong with Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine – and Why?

    Why has the Russian campaign in Ukraine, at least so far, not gone Putin’s way? Experts who have examined Russia’s failures in Ukraine found that of the flaws in planning and execution identified by experts, several categories of failure stand out: a) Underestimating the Ukrainian leaders’, military’s and public’s will and ability to resist; b) underestimating the collective West’s will and capability to aid Ukraine; c) poor planning of the military campaign, calling for simultaneous achievement of multiple objectives along several axes, unachievable with resources committed to attaining these objectives; and d) failure to establish a single chain of command for the operation, to ensure that advancing units have adequate and timely protection and supplies and to achieve air superiority.

  • Russia's Claims of Ukrainian Biological Weapons: A Propaganda Ploy?

    Since its invasion of Ukraine, Russia has claimed Kyiv is developing biological weapons with support from the US and Germany. Experts familiar with laboratories in Ukraine say the accusations are groundless.

  • Russia’s Hybrid War in Ukraine

    Microsoft last week released a report which details a broad cyberattacks campaign by Russia in Ukraine, a campaign conducted in concert with kinetic military action. At least six Russian Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) actors and other unattributed threats, have conducted destructive attacks, espionage operations, or both, while Russian military forces attack the country by land, air, and sea.

  • World Military Expenditure Passes $2 Trillion for First Time

    Total global military expenditure increased by 0.7 per cent in real terms in 2021, to reach $2113 billion. The five largest spenders in 2021 were the United States, China, India, the United Kingdom and Russia, together accounting for 62 per cent of expenditure.

  • Reviving the National Defense Stockpile Funding

    Established during World War II, the National Defense Stockpile (NDS) ensures that the Department of Defense can access key materials necessary to maintain readiness in the event of a major supply chain disruption. Current critical minerals stockpile is inadequate to meet the requirements of great power competition.

  • Amid Carnage in Ukraine, a Shadow War on the Russian Side of the Border

    Away from the active battlefronts within Ukraine, though, there’s a less bloody, less prominent front in the two-month-old war, a shadow campaign that has included attacks on military and industrial targets in Russia itself. It’s not clear how many incidents have occurred, or whether they resulted from air strikes, or missiles, or sabotage.

  • Can the Russian Military Overcome Its Manpower Problems in Ukraine?

    A new phase of the Ukraine war is shaping up in the eastern part of the country, but succeeding with its new war goals will be no simple task for a Russian military that has lost some 15,000 personnel since its February 24 invasion.

  • National Action Plan: The U.S. Domestic Counter-Unmanned Aircraft

    Over the last decade, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or “drones”) have become a regular feature of American life. We use them for recreation, for research, and for commerce. But the proliferation of this new technology has also introduced new risks to public safety, privacy, and homeland security. On Monday, the administration released whole-of-government plan to address UAS threats in the homeland.

  • Why Is Germany Not Supplying Ukraine with Heavy Weapons?

    The criticism of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has been unrelenting. He has been accused of stalling and breaking his promises over sending heavy weapons to Ukraine. Here are some of the main points of contention.

  • Lessons from the Battle for Kyiv

    The Russia operation to take Kyiv rapidly degenerated into an urban battle of attrition favorable to Ukraine, and eventually the Russian government withdrew its troops, conceding defeat in the battle for Kyiv. The fog of war prevents in-depth analysis, but two initial lessons stand out from the first phase of the conflict: First, do not rely on the invaded nation’s popular support; second, know when to quit.

  • How Hypersonic Missiles Work and the Unique Threats They Pose

    On 18 March, Russia used a hypersonic missile against a Ukrainian arms depot. The technology the Russians used is not particularly advanced. However, next-generation hypersonic missiles that Russia, China and the U.S. are developing do pose a significant threat to national and global security.

  • More and More Russian Soldiers Reportedly Refusing to Fight in Ukraine

    A growing number of Russian soldiers are refusing to fight in Ukraine. “The phenomenon of refusal is becoming systemic,” says one expert. “Such soldiers are found in practically every unit that has returned from Ukraine. According to our estimates, from 20 to 40 percent of the contract servicemen that returned from Ukraine and that are being readied to be sent back are refusing to return to combat.”

  • International Approval Shapes Public Perceptions of Drone Warfare

    Drones that carry weapons are increasingly employed as counterterrorism tools, but nations use and constrain strikes differently. France, for example, submits its strikes to the U.N. for approval; the U.S. typically does not. This difference matters when it comes to public support and perceptions of legitimacy.