The Strategic Value of the Black Sea

The Black Sea is a strategic trade and transportation artery which connects Europe and Asia (NSC, 2022). The countries surrounding the coasts of the Black Sea are EU and NATO members (Romania and Bulgaria), former members of the Soviet Union (Russia, Moldova, Ukraine and Georgia) and Middle Eastern powers (Turkey). After the Cold War, the lack of agreement between Russia and the West on the power-sharing in the region and the disintegration of the Soviet Union caused a series of conflicts, which are still ongoing. Recently, Russia and Ukraine have built up their military power in the region, and NATO has stationed additional forces in Romania to enhance the Alliance's defence strategy (Miller, 2017). The Black Sea is, therefore more militarised and less stable than at any point since the end of the Cold War. Tensions and instability in this key region can seriously affect global commercial trade and maritime activities.

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The Impact of Weather Conditions on Amphibious Military Operations

This paper will analyse how weather conditions impact amphibious planning and the conduct of military operations. More precisely, this paper will scrutinize the different components of the broader concept of weather, assessing the impact that these components can have on amphibious warfare. To write this Info Flash, mainly sources coming from the US Marine Corps were taken into consideration, since they regularly publish analyses and studies. However, analysing the American doctrine regarding amphibious operations makes it possible to make similar considerations for the NATO doctrine, since the Alliance’s doctrines are considerably influenced by the US despite not being public knowledge.

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From the “Alligator” to the LCAC: How Amphibious Military Vehicles Evolved in Time

In recent times, amphibious warfare returned to prominence, with many military operations around the world being conducted by amphibious troops. From D-Day to Ukraine, marines from different countries have a long history of successful deployment in war theatres, mainly due to their preparation and their capabilities. Readiness, flexibility, and cross-domain operativity are the basic features of amphibious units, which find themselves fighting in one of the most difficult types of warfare. Sea, land, air, space, and cyberspace are all fundamental domains to organising and carrying out a successful amphibious operation. For this reason, to operate in such a complex and multifaceted environment, amphibious units benefit from unique vehicles and assets that help them in their operations.

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Assessing Africa-EU Relations vis-à-vis Russian Influence in Africa

This paper will analyse to what extent Africa past relations with Russia and the West have affected present African geopolitics. To reach this goal an historical overview of the legacy of the USSR will be provided, complementing this theoretical part with the effects that the colonial legacy still produces, hampering EU-Africa relations. Following this, in order to assess future developments in Russia-Africa relations, it is fundamental to evaluate the implications of the food and economic crisis in Africa as a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, as well as evaluating the effects of the recovery of many European countries with energetic ties with Africa after Russia’s weaponization of the energy policies. Finally, this research paper aims to provide some recommendations to strengthen Africa-EU relations in the near future as a result of the window of opportunity opened by the Russia-Ukraine war.  

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