Silhouetted anonymous Royal Marines from Lima Company 42 Commando doing fast rope training


As 2019 comes to an end, the Sitrep podcast has gathered a team of experts to take a look back at the standout moments for defence security and what they could mean moving forward. 


The Guests

Professor Michael Clarke

Professor Clarke is the former Director General of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) and now Associate Director of the Strategy and Security Institute at the University of Exeter.

He has advised the House of Commons Defence Committee since 1997.

In 2004, Professor Clarke became the UK’s member of the UN Secretary General’s Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters.

He has since advised the Chief of Defence Staff, UK Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Defence and was appointed to the Prime Minister’s National Security Forum in 2009. 

A Sitrep regular - previous episodes have benefitted from Professor Clarke's digestible breakdowns on extremely complex topics.


Professor Paul Rogers

Paul Rogers is Emeritus Professor of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford and Global Security Consultant with Oxford Research Group.

He has worked in the field of international security, arms control and political violence for over 30 years.

For a number of years, Professor Rogers has spoken to Sitrep about the impact of climate change - explaining the threat to security caused by changing temperatures and the instability caused by the mass movement of people.

Other areas of expertise include terrorism, Middle East security and the Persian Gulf - all of which have appeared on the doorstep of defence in the last year.


Lucy Fisher

Lucy is the Defence Editor for The Times, having previously been the paper's Chief Political Correspondent. 

She brought her expertise to Sitrep recently ahead of the UK General Election - giving the defence and security perspective before voting began. 

Alongside this, she has offered her insight on the cases of historical allegations being brought against former soldiers who served in Northern Ireland.

An experienced journalist, Lucy has also written for the Sunday Times and makes regular appearances on the BBC and Sky News.


Simon Marks

Simon is President & Chief Correspondent for Feature Story News in Washington.

A distinguished journalistic career has included coverage of the 'Death on the Rock' killings of an IRA cell in Gibraltar, events in Northern Ireland, the World Trade Center attacks on 11 September 2001 and the 7/7 bombings in London. 

A regular contributor, he has given Sitrep the stateside perspective for many years.


A Year In Focus

There's been plenty to discuss in the world of defence this year.

Here are some of the issues on Sitrep's end-of-year list:

  • The state of British defence at the end of 2019 - With a newly-elected government and a UK Prime Minister with a new mandate, we’ll be asking what this means for defence and the Armed Forces.
  • Another big question – Who will join the armed forces of the future?
  • The 2020 US Presidential Election - What does America want to do (or have to do) with its armed forces in the coming year? Where does the UK feature in these plans? 
  • Climate change - Sure to grab the headlines in 2020.  But will nations start to take it more seriously as a threat to security?
  • Current and future threats - What is the perceived national security threat as we go into 2020?  What is the threat to NATO today?


Presented by Kate Gerbeau with BFBS Defence Analyst Christopher Lee.


How To Listen

The review can be downloaded on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and on Spotify (see above).

Listen on BFBS Radio on 29 December 2019 at 18:00 (UK time).

Listen on BFBS Radio 2 on 29 December 2019 at 02:00 and 11am (UK time) and 1 January 2020 at 05:00.

Tune in to BFBS via DAB+ across the UK. 

Listen online and via our radio App in the UK and overseas. 

Hear BFBS also on FM in Scotland, Colchester, Salisbury Plain, Aldershot, Catterick, Brize Norton, Lisburn, Holywood and Aldergrove and Blandford Forum in the UK and on all overseas stations.  On Sky Channel 0211/Freesat 786.


Cover image: (Royal Navy).