The HMS Defender Incident: Lawfare, Optics, and a Changing European Strategic Direction

CIMSEC – Despite its limited immediate impact, the significance of this FONOP cannot be overstated. Since the end of the Cold War, very few European nations have taken initiatives to upend their strategic interests in the face of powerful adversaries and have instead been relying on the American security umbrella. A multitude of factors are at play to influence this return to geopolitics in Europe, from the specter of Trump’s alienating policies towards America’s allies and partners, to the advent of a multipolar world. Yet this FONOP and renewed European interest in the Indo-Pacific shows that even a strategically independent Europe will remain a natural partner to America for military cooperation and burden-sharing, not just due to shared economic interests, but also common values.

Media report claiming UK carrier group spots PLA submarines ‘not credible’

Global Times – A report by a UK media organization recently claimed a UK aircraft carrier strike group that sailed in the South China Sea in late July spotted Chinese nuclear-powered submarines that shadowed it during its voyage, but Chinese military experts said on Monday that the report is not credible, and is aimed at showing off the group’s presence and boasting of the its anti-submarine capability.