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- On April 20, 2018
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We are now well used to war in the Middle East and South-West Asia. Despite the complexities of Islamist extremism, there has been much in-depth analysis and practical experience gained of conflict in Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan; we think we largely understand it.
Despite the focus on extremism and the Middle East, however, Africa remains the world’s most violent continent and it is from here that the majority of the world’s refugees originate.
Ongoing crises in the Central African Republic (CAR), Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Burundi have coincided with a dramatic rise in refugees and asylum seekers across the continent. Sub-Saharan Africa alone hosts more than 26 per cent of the world’s refugee population.
Yet our understanding of the dynamics of African conflict is patchy at best; at worst, we are vulnerable to assumptions about war that have emerged from our Middle East experience but are completely inapplicable in Africa.
We are delighted to welcome Richard Iron to discuss why war in Africa is unique, and different to elsewhere; and how understanding these dynamics can enable policy makers and practitioners to develop the appropriate strategies to address growing conflict and tension on the continent.
Richard Iron read Engineering at Trinity Hall from 1977-1980. He served for 37 years in the British Army, largely spent on operations in Northern Ireland, the Falkland Islands, the Balkans and Iraq. Subsequently leading the development of British Army doctrine, he was responsible for the analysis of the Iraq War. Later, Richard Iron became the Defence Fellow at the University of Oxford and worked for the Chief of Defence Staff on developing the UK Ministry of Defence’s capacity to think and work strategically. After leaving the Army in 2012, he led the operation to provide security to the remaining US presence in Iraq. Until moving to Australia in early 2016 he was Chief Executive Officer of Equilibrium-Global, an international strategic consultancy based in London. He continues to be a visiting fellow at the University of Oxford and has written and lectured widely on doctrine, military history and counter-insurgency. He was lead editor of the book British Generals in Blair’s Wars and is currently writing a history of the Sierra Leone war from an African perspective.
This lunch will take place at the Savage Club at 12 noon for 12.30pm. The Club is at 12 Bank Place (off Collins Street) in the City. Cost is $55 including drinks. All guests are most welcome; the more the better. Would you please advise Peter Baines at email@example.com or on 9820 2334 by latest Monday noon, 16 July, if you will be coming (and dietary requirements). Those emailing their intention to attend should ring Peter to confirm if they receive no email confirmation from him within 24 hours of booking.