British thinking on air power: the evolution of AP 3000

Christopher Finn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article traces the contemporary development of British air power doctrine from 1977 to the present day. By the late 1970s the published doctrine of WWII and the early Cold War had become stultified. The RAF had become focused upon the tactical aspect of the Central Region in particular and had developed further its anti-intellectual tendencies. The creation of the post of Director Defence Studies (RAF) allowed a series of individuals to challenge the orthodoxies of their times and, in their own ways,to stimulate a broader debate on the value of air power. The article suggests that while the context and personalities changed with time, there was a coherent line of thought about the reasons for articulating air power doctrine. And, more importantly, the principles stated were remarkably consistent and enduring ones.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-57
Number of pages2
JournalAir and Space Power Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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