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Rising Global Interest in the History of UAE Armed Forces

June 8, 2021

Papers on the history of the UAE armed forces by a Khalifa University faculty member, Dr. Athol Yates, Assistant Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences and Acting Head of the Institute of International and Civil Security, have been accepted by two of the world’s leading scholarly institutions focusing on military history.


The first conference is the Royal Air Force Museum Conference, taking place in London from 16 – 17 September 2021. The conference will bring together academics and scholars to present air power research that challenges the accepted historical consensus. Dr. Yates will be presenting on the history of the UAE Air Force. 


The second conference is the US Naval Academy’s McMullen Naval History Symposium, taking place in Annapolis, Maryland, US from 23-24 September 2021. This biennially held naval conference focuses on the latest research on naval and maritime history from academics and practitioners all over the globe. The symposium has been described as the “largest regular meeting of naval historians in the world” and as the US Navy’s “single most important interaction with [an] academic historical audience.” Dr. Yates will be presenting on the history of the UAE Navy. 


Dr. Yates recently authored the book “The Evolution of the Armed Forces of the UAE” and is a scholar focusing on the history of the UAE military and police forces.


He said: “The acceptance of papers on the history of the UAE Armed Forces reflects a growing interest world-wide on how the UAE has become a regional power within such a short time. Foreign countries, their militaries and academics are increasingly studying the UAE as an example of how a country can build regional stability and security far in excess of its small physical and demographic size.” 


Dr. Yates also pointed out that scholarly journals are increasingly interested in UAE military history. For example, this month the International Journal of Maritime History accepted a paper on the history of Abu Dhabi’s navy, co-written with Khalifa University’s Dr Ash Rossiter, Assistant Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences.


Erica Solomon
Senior Publication Specialist
8 June 2021