The Battlecruiser That Wouldn’t Die
On Aug. 1, 1914, the German battlecruiser Goeben was taking on coal, preparing to flee the Italian port of Brindisi in order to escape a pursuing British Royal Navy squadron. Thus began an epic pursuit across the Mediterranean, with effects that reverberated across World War I. In the years... Read more
How North Korea Could Go to War
The most intense period of fighting in Korea ended some 64 years ago, but the divide across the peninsula remains the world’s most visible legacy of the Cold War. While the Republic of Korea has become economically successful and democratic, North Korea has become a punchline. Nevertheless, the Democratic People’s Republic of... Read more
The Avro Arrow Was Canada’s Awesome, Pointless Jet Fighter
This story originally appeared on June 18, 2016. In the early 1950s, the Canadian government began to solicit orders for a new high-speed interceptor. The explosion in jet technology had rendered Canada’s first- and second-generation interceptors obsolete. In order to patrol Canada’s vast airspace, the Royal Canadian Air Force... Read more
The HMS ‘Queen Elizabeth’ Was an Unlucky Battleship
Earlier this week HMS Queen Elizabeth, the largest aircraft carrier ever built for the Royal Navy, began sea trials. The Queen Elizabeth class represents a massive leap forward for the Royal Navy, and the success or failure of the class will structure British seapower for the rest of the 21st century.... Read more
The Carrier USS ‘Enterprise’ Helped Destroy the Core of the Japanese Fleet
In May 1938, the U.S. Navy commissioned the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, the seventh ship to bear the name in American service. The second of three sisters, Enterprise made a central — perhaps the central — contribution to the war effort in 1942. The U.S. Navy began 1942 with six fleet carriers — excluding... Read more
Could the United States Have Really Won the Vietnam War?
Mark Moyar, the scholar of U.S. foreign and military policy, recently had the opportunity to update an older argument on the viability of the Vietnam War. Moyar argues that the historical consensus on the war is wrong on several points, and that in fact the United States could have... Read more
Russia’s Machines Are Well-Suited for Arctic Conflict
Over the past decade, nations bordering on the Arctic have found themselves with a big new security problem. The melting of the Arctic ice has opened up shipping lanes and opportunities for the exploitation for undersea resources, but has also exposed vulnerabilities for countries that have long considered their... Read more
How to Build a World-Class Navy
Analysts and politicians throw around the term “blue-water navy” as if it has a single, fixed meaning. Broadly speaking, having a blue water navy means having the capacity to deploy a task force of ships across the open ocean, and to support them at great distance from their bases.... Read more
Busting the Myths Surrounding the Battle of Dunkirk
The 77th anniversary of the Dunkirk evacuation has already received a great deal of attention, in no doubt due to the pending release of Christopher Nolan’s new film treatment of the battle. For nearly 77 years, the battle has stirred controversy—in one view it’s an example of British courage and gallantry... Read more
‘Graf Zeppelin’ Was Nazi Germany’s Big, Dumb Aircraft Carrier
From the first days of his ascension to power, Adolf Hitler planned to rebuild the Kriegsmarine into a world-class navy. Most of the world’s other major fleets included aircraft carriers, and so German naval authorities soon determined that the Reich would also require carriers. Germany laid down its first... Read more
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