Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A little spot of self-celebration

I've been planning out the next posts, and for sure there will be one about Scavenger/Mantis/Telemos (the MOD sure does not make cuts on programme names...), which hopefully will include the news of the first contracts being signed, as they are expected soon.
I've also been taking notes and thinking a lot about the Army restructuring, about my thoughts on it, about what we know so far, and about what in my opinion could and should have been done differently. However, i'm hesitating on this particular post, since until we get the official announcements,  most of what we have is speculation and leaks coming from the press. And these are notoriously dangerous material to work with, since for one thing correct there can easily be two wrong.

But regardless of that, i thought i would take a moment to self-celebrate a little bit. This blog is young, but has been making immense progress in these months. In June, for the first time since i started, the number of visits in-month climbed over 50.000, and i consider this a big achievement.
The number of comments has been on the rise, and this rewards me even more, as the exchange of ideas and opinions is fundamental, since the aim of my blog is to increase the public's awareness of how the Armed Forces work, how they are employed and resourced and equipped.
I've also had the pleasure to see forums and blogs on defence all over the internet posting links to my articles more and more frequently. I was linked at from India, from France, from Italy, and from many other countries. My articles have been read and discussed by a lot of people, all over the world, and this pleases me immensely.

Not long ago, i even had the pleasure of seeing a link to an article of mine put up by Defense Industry Daily
A defence reporter from an important London's newspaper contacted me on mails and i had the pleasure of helping him create his article, and i had other satisfactions of this kind.
I've even had the pleasure to see my questions asked and my thoughts expressed by the Parliamentary Select Defence Committee in a few hearings, even if this is probably just a coincidence. Or maybe it is not. Who knows. 

I write to inform myself, first of all. I use my blog as an archive of news and developments of which i'm the first user, not just the author: it is an effective way to keep up to date with all what happens to the Forces. Indeed, in the free time i'm even trying to put together an up-to-date map of the UK reporting all of the barracks, bases, airports and installations, with an accompanying document on the units based in each location. Something that will no doubt keep me busy, with the changes that will come with the return of troops from Germany, with the cuts, with the Army restructuring and all the rest.

This is the reason why there's not even an advertisement banner on this blog. It is not about money. I don't make a penny from it: i just want to know. And i want others to know as well, so that they can better understand what the Armed Forces need, and so that they can see the trick behind the words of politics when it comes to Defence.
And since i want to know the real things and not the fantasy, i try to make it absolutely clear whenever i'm speculating on something. The hard information i try to provide, the solid facts, are backed by links to the official sources whenever possible, and i can promise you that i put my very best efforts into making sure that what i report is correct. It is more than possible that i still make an error now and then, and of course information in this particular field and in these days of cuts and reform can get old very fast, but since i'm the first user of what i write and report, i can ensure you that my focus is on getting the truths.

Recently i've also decided to make a Twitter account, where i can announce my new articles and, more importanly, highlight all kind of interesting little news that can come out over a day: things that are worth reporting, but for whatever reason cannot get a full blog post about them.
I suggest to my readers who have Twitter to add my contact to their list, so you can receive all these additional pieces of information.

And i just wanted to thank you all for visiting, reading, commenting and linking: this blog, like any other, is nothing without visitors, and without comments. It is thank to you all that Uk Armed Forces Commentary has gained a place in the constellation of defence-related blogs and websites.
Keep visiting, keep commenting. And if you'd like to ask me something, or if you'd like to write a piece of your own on some defence topic, and you wanted to see it up here, just let me know: surely we'd be able to collaborate.

On my part, i'll do my best to keep UK Armed Forces Commentary up to date and useful, hoping for the Visits graphic to continue aiming skywards. Thank you all.



  1. I always look forward to your posts as I usually find them very interesting. You're one of my favourite Military blogs.

    Many Thanks.

  2. Bravo, bravo. Keep up the excellent work. You're the best source on the web. Why don't u make some $ from advertising? Another big British disease is an (insane) scorn for making $. If making some $ helps u and this blog, why not? Tim, Oakland CA.

    1. Thank you. And well, making money honestly is not evil at all... but i like my blog without silly ads. And as long as i can live without that little money i would get, i'm happy this way.

  3. Replies
    1. Yes bravo again. Always thought-provoking, stimulating and well-informed. One of the best blogs on Defence.

    2. Thank you very much Mike! You are probably the most constant follower and commenter on here, so you are a special part of this blog!

    3. Yes well done for all the hard work you have put into your blog.

      Personally I think its amazing that a Italian shows such knowledge and support for the British armed forces.

      Somehow I just can't imagine a British person being so enthusiastic about the Italian Armed forces. Then again there aren't many British people who show anywhere near your level of support for even their own armed forces.

    4. Thank you, but believe me, there is quite a few persons in the UK very dedicated to defence matters. Luckily.

      As to the british not being enthusiastic about the italian armed forces, that it quite normal and to be expected. The history and heritage behind the italian armed forces is very little thing compared to the story of the british armed forces from late 1600 onwards.

      No one knows the Granatieri di Sardegna.
      But the redcoats? The British Grenadiers...? Everyone knows.

  4. Hi Gabriele,

    Well done! Keep up the good work!


    1. Thank you, my friend. You are another of my few die-hard commenters, and i'm grateful for it. Always nice to get a word from you.

    2. Gabriele

      "Thank you very much Mike!"

      Well, thanks for your thanks. The nature of my life at the moment is such that at times I have the opportunity for plenty of contributions and at other times my commitments mean that I have little or none. I hope that you can understand that, when I reach one of the latter, I won't have taken umbrage, but will simply be short of time.

      Best of luck in your future endeavours.

    3. Don't worry! I sure can understand being busy. I have quite some experience of it myself...!

  5. Gabriele,
    your blog is certainly the best I know of. When reading articles elsewhere and questions arise in my mind I always think "I wonder what Gabriele has to say or has already said about this?"
    Thank you and keep up the good work!!

  6. Replies
    1. Sono meta friulano e meta bergamascho.

      un articolo per te : http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/jul/03/army-cuts-revealed-in-leak?newsfeed=true

    2. Oh bella! Benvenuto!

      Grazie del link, ma ovviamente già sapevo. Da stamattina sto lavorando su un super-post al riguardo. Sarà online presto (spero). Comunque nelle prossime ore.


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