Threat appears in many guises. Emerging once again as a sovereign nation-state, the United Kingdom and its citizens face an evolving multiplicity of threats and hazards. Some clear, others ambiguous, to engage with these dangers in defence of the realm requires clear, strategic thinking.
We noted in the previous instalment that national security for the UK today fundamentally relates to a state of public trust that this array of threats is being sufficiently mitigated, such that the citizens’ everyday lives may continue, and their liberties remain intact. Through leaving the European Union, there now exists the opportunity to fundamentally reassert UK national security.
Clear threats are openly perceptible. The extraordinarily destructive power of nuclear weapons is widely known, and today the danger posed by them remains critically significant. Terrorism too by its very nature courts mass attention, loudly forcing its depraved shadow into everyday life. Both of these – and there are others still – represent an ongoing, clear threat to UK national security.
Many threats are ambiguous, with their nature and scope harder to define. As the cyber realm now increasingly integrates into both critical national infrastructure and the lives of the citizen, hostile states, mercenary hacking cells and sophisticated criminals alike pose a threat to the UK which – although often as amorphous as the internet itself – would be gravely unwise to underestimate.
This series maintains that effective national security strategy demands clear, limited objectives, whilst recognising the power in the comprehensive application of state and civil capabilities in the pursuit of those objectives. With this in mind, two key strategic threats to the UK as a sovereign nation-state in the 21st century will now follow.
Firstly: Border Insecurity. Underpinning that public trust critical to a contemporary conception of UK national security is of course the continued existence of the nation itself. Without borders, there can be no nation. As an island, the UK has not suffered from the same mass influx of hundreds of thousands of impoverished migrants – primarily fighting aged males from the Middle East and North Africa – as continental Europe has since 2015. We are now watching the tragically predictable results unfold across Europe.
However, as an EU member state, the UK’s sovereign authority over its borders has been relentlessly diminished and the impact of this felt across the towns and cities of the nation. While many immigrants have happily and successfully integrated into British society and adapted to British culture and values, globalist multiculturalism has also fostered ghettoisation and social disharmony. Such disharmony generates a serious, long term national security threat.
Following official withdrawal from the EU in 2019, UK borders can be effectively re-established, ensuring that both hostile persons and uncontrolled masses can be actively prevented from entering UK territory. At the same time, such border consolidation creates the crucially necessary space within which attempts can be made to repair the serious social disharmony already affecting citizens’ everyday lives. Sovereign borders underpin national security.
Secondly: Ideological Subversion. Deeply intertwined with the concept of the nation are also the core ideological and cultural values which unite the citizenry with a common bond. To undermine these values beyond repair is to destroy the nation. Sixty years ago, patriotism was proclaimed proudly. Today, pride in Britain and British culture is systematically crushed by a regressive, neo-Marxist ideology which has increasingly come to dominate the national education system and universities.
The Ideological subversion of Western society has over generations been borne from several key sources, most critically KGB Active Measures and Frankfurt School Critical Theory. The objective of this threat is to penetrate the minds of every person – particularly the young – and through disinformation induce them to regard the originally prevailing cultural-ideological basis of Western civilisation with rebellious contempt and disdain. This fractures British society, entrenches disharmony, and undermines national security, ultimately risking collapse from within.
Meeting this threat as a sovereign UK in the 21st Century requires a comprehensive strategic approach, utilising not only military-intelligence counter-subversion operations and the open media, but also a radical overhaul of the UK education system. To safeguard the nation’s future, it is imperative that younger generations are not indoctrinated with fundamentally subversive Marxist ideology, but are instead given a rounded and rational education. Failure to do this will have disastrous consequences in future decades.
These two critical threats to a sovereign UK are of course not exclusive, and there is much more to expand upon. However, if the UK is to effectively uphold national security as a sovereign nation-state, such fundamental considerations must come first. There can be no national security without the nation, and the nation exists not only on the basis of territory, but critically also within the minds of the citizens at large. As the UK leaves the EU, engaging these threats with strategic purpose is of existential importance.