Ever since the 2016 referendum on Brexit, the U.K. has been busy reimagining its place in the world. Now, with the umbilical cord between the U.K. and the European Union finally cut, London will have to put into practice its long-stated ambitions for a “Global Britain.” The British government’s Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy, published on March 16, offers the first official and comprehensive expression of how it plans to do so.
The Integrated Review has a great deal of interest for cyber-watchers. For example, the word “standards” appears more times in the document than “China.” (More on that in a future column.) Another aspect of the Integrated Review, though, is its “tilt” toward the Indo-Pacific. While the planned deployment to the region of the U.K.’s aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, is a newsworthy piece of theater, there is a lot more complexity beneath the surface of this eastward pivot.