Brigadier General Mike Tarsa was given command of the 3rd (UK) Division. Speaking at the time, Brigadier Tarsa said it was an “honour” to be appointed the task.
Generals have justified the decision to work closer with neighbours as Britain is unlikely to go to war on its own in the future.
A British military mentor training troops in Mali, where the French are leading operations against Boko Haram
Any large military operations have in recent history been as part of coalitions of allies, as the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns show.
One senior officer said: “Whenever you deal with the Americans, because of their size, they are always the elephant and we are always the mouse. No matter how courteous they are, it’s very clear who is in charge.
“We’ve found working with the French, that they are a similar size to us, we’ve both had empires and we just seem to understand each other. It turns out the language barrier isn’t as important as we thought. It’s all about distance and scale.”