On 22nd-23rd September 2020, the Baltic Defence College (BALTDEFCOL) conducted 11th Baltic Military History Conference in partnership with the Estonian War Museum – General Laidoner Museum and the Estonian Military Academy. In light of COVID-19 pandemic, most of the guest speakers and external guests were using the opportunity to participate online.
The central theme of this year's Conference "Small but Capable? Quality Against Mass in Military History" brought together several experts and military historians from fifteen nations. All guest speakers presented their papers discussing whether quality or numbers is the most important factor deciding the outcome of military standoffs. Their views were based on analysis of various strategies and operations and were considering the implications of lessons learned for present security challenges.
The Keynote Speaker of the first day was one of the most well-known military history and strategy experts, Prof. Martin van Creveld, Prof. Emeritus at the Hebrew University. He shared his personal views on the topic of "United We Stand" with remarkable recommendations for Baltic region security and armed forces development. Closing Keynote by BG (ret) Michael H. Clemmesen, the first Commandant and "Godfather" of the BALTDEFCOL and outstanding researcher and military historian, was another significant speech discussing the military history in the context of practical advice for Baltic countries security.
The audience of the Conference consisted of over 150 participants, including the College staff and faculty members, the students of the Command Senior Enlisted Leaders' Course the students of the Joint Command and General Staff Course. It was the third time the Conference was integrated into their curricula being an essential constituent of the students' education.
The Annual Conference on Baltic Military History is the longest-running Conference hosted by BALTDEFCOL. The goal of the Conference is to provide participants with insight into how historical experience have influenced modern military thinking.
BALTDEFCOL sends a truly thank you to all the speakers, partners, participants, staff members and everyone, who made the Conference happen! We hope to see you all again next year!