29th January 2016

More money for Germany’s army

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Criticised for many years for its immobility regarding its armed forces, Germany seems finally to have turned its attention to defence issues. Over the past weeks both Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaüble had been holding out the prospect of a significant rise in military spending. Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen […]

New armoured vehicle for France?

A soldier mans an M-2 .50-caliber machine gun atop a French Renault VAB 4x4 armored personnel carrier, part of a display of Allied armor during Operation Desert Shield.

A new call for tender for a light armoured personnel carrier to replace a segment of the French army’s fleet of VAB (véhicule de l’avant blindé) armoured vehicles is awaited for “impatiently” by Emmanuel Levacher, president of Volvo Group Governmental Sales (VGGS) and CEO of Renault Trucks Defense (RTD) and Panhard.   CEO since June […]

French gift to Cameroon

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  Far from being limited to military operations and training, the French contribution to the fight against terrorism in Africa also takes other forms which may be more discreet but are just as decisive. A recent example is in Cameroon where France gave that West African nation’s Special Forces a package of armaments worth €480,000. […]

The Belgian army in 2016 – part 2

Almost 9,000 military personnel patrolled the streets of five Belgian cities in 2015. Photo credit: Belgian Ministry of Defence

Like many other countries, Belgium is engaged in the Middle East in the fight against Daesh and to help train the Iraqi army. The Land Component continues to ensure the surveillance of six Dutch F-16s at the Azraq airbase in Jordan. Positions will be swapped from July 2016 when the F-16s will be replaced by Belgian […]

The Belgian army in 2016

Almost 12,000 Belgian soldiers were deployed in 2015. Photo credit: Belgian Ministry of Defence

The continuing threat of Daesh, the terrorist attack in Paris in January and November 2015 and the migrant crisis have engendered new operations for many European armies including the Belgian Land Component which represents almost 85% of the 12,000 men and women of the Belgian Armed Forces deployed in 2015. With a heavy presence in […]

Six die in avalanche (2nd update)

From left to right: Legionnaire Denis Halili, 21, born in Albania; Legionnaire Lal Bahadur Khapangi, 24, born in Nepal; Corporal Touré Lamarana, 33, married, born in Madagascar naturalised French; Legionnaire Gheorghe Palade, 21, born in Moldavia; Legionnaire 1st class Samuel Simi, 26, born in Italy

The French Defence Ministry announced on 25 January that a sixth legionnaire has died of injuries sustained in the avalanche that killed five of his colleagues in the French Alps on 18 January. Legionnaire 1st Class David Hetenyi, 23, was born in Hungary.   The five others who died were Legionnaires Denis Halili, Lal Bahadur […]

ASB – part two

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Here is part two of our portrait of the thermal battery specialist, ASB.   One of the uses for ASB’s thermal batteries is in artillery shells: 76mm, 122mm, 127mm and 155mm calibres. One of the company’s newest developments for this sector is a self-activating battery which is activated by the acceleration of the shell when […]

What you never dared ask about thermal batteries


Anyone interested in the defence industry will be familiar with names such as Airbus, Boeing, BAE Systems, Dassault and so on. But these big prime contractors rely on a myriad of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), many of which are amazingly skilled and agile and frequently hold know-how that is unique to them. We are […]

Shakti 2016: over to the parade!

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The joint Franco-Indian Shakti 2016 exercise has just ended. It was the third such exercise since the first was launched in 2011 with the aim of improving the interoperability between French and Indian units. This year saw 56 personnel from the 35th Infantry Regiment of the French Army trading know-how with their counterparts from the […]

Challenger 2 MBT upgrade

Will General Dynamics UK, Lockheed Martin UK or BAE Systems win the upgrade programme for the British Army's Challenger 2 tanks?

The British Army’s fleet of Challenger 2 main battle tanks, down to 227 units since 2010, is now just awaiting the financing of the evaluation phase to engage the Challenger 2 Life Extension Programme (CR2 LEP). BAE Systems, the original manufacturer of the tanks, together with General Dynamics UK and Lockheed Martin UK confirmed that […]