Practising remote warfare: analysing the remote character of the Saudi/UAE intervention in Yemen

Ed Stoddard, Sorina Toltica

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    Abstract

    Recent years have seen a significant growth in studies of “remote” and “distanced” forms of military intervention. At present however, few analyses have sought to explore the remote character of interventions beyond Western (especially US&UK) cases despite the fact that regional powers in other parts of the world are increasingly militarily active, particularly in the Middle East. This article seeks to look beyond US and UK cases of remote warfare and explore the remote character of the interventions of Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates in Yemen (2015-to date). Using the notion of “practices” that emphasizes both change and continuity in the performance of remote warfare across different contexts, the article shows how Saudi and UAE remote warfare practices show variation both from the US and UK examples and from each other in terms of strategic logics, tactics and the benefits of remoteness. This focus on practices allows us to move beyond debates about what remote warfare is, and who uses it, and permits a broader discussion about change and continuity in the way remote warfare is implemented.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)447-467
    Number of pages21
    JournalDefence Studies
    Volume21
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Nov 2021

    Keywords

    • remote warfare
    • remoteness
    • Yemen
    • Saudi Arabia
    • United Arab Emirates
    • practice theory
    • UKRI
    • ESRC
    • ES/ P000673/1

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