UK air-sea integration in Libya, 2011: a successful blueprint for the future?
King's College London
Libya was a successful operation fought in a manner Sir Julian Corbett would have immediately recognised as being typically British. Operational success was based upon the successful integration of UK air and sea assets. As a time, scope and geographically limited operation based on air and sea integration as part of an existing alliance framework (NATO), UK participation in the 2011 Libya operation seems likely to help set the course for British defence in the short-term. Sea based forces were crucial to ensure sea control as an enabler for projecting force ashore from the sea through TLAM and NGS and carrier based aviation. They also enforced a UN arms embargo on the Libyan regime while allowing supplies to reach the Libyan rebel forces.
This is an English version of the chapter written in March 2012 and which appeared in ‘Integration der britischen Luft- und Seestreitkräfte im Libyenkrieg 2011: Erfolgreiche Blaupause für die Zukunft?’ in S. Bruns, K. Petretto, D. Petrovic (eds), Maritime Sicherheit, Globale Gesellschaft und internationale Beziehungen, (VS-Verlag, Wiesbaden, 2013), ISBN: 978-3-531-18479-1. The Corbett Centre would like to thank the publishers for permission to reproduce it as a Corbett Paper.