|Allegiance United Kingdom|
Service number 497496
Role Military Historian
|Years of service 1971–2009|
Name Jonathon Riley
Service/branch British Army
Unit Queen's Regiment
|Born 16 January 1955 (age 60) (1955-01-16) |
Awards Order of the Bath, Distinguished Service Order, Legion of Merit
Battles and wars The Troubles, Sierra Leone, Iraq War, War in Afghanistan
Books The Last Ironsides: The Engli, Napoleon as a General, Routledge Philosophy Guideboo, Liberal utilitarianism, 1813: Empire at Bay: The
Similar People John A Ferejohn, Jack N Rakove, Sara Edwards, John Stuart Mill, Gwenyth Petty
Education University College London
In parenthesis jonathon riley interview
Lieutenant-General Jonathon Peter Riley, CB, DSO (born 16 January 1955) is a retired British Army officer and military historian.
Riley joined the British army as a cadet in 1971 was commissioned into the Queen's Regiment in 1974. He was promoted to lieutenant on 9 March 1976, to captain on 9 September 1980, and, having attended the Staff College, Camberley in 1987, he was promoted to major at the end of the year. During this time he saw active service in Northern Ireland.
Promoted to lieutenant colonel in 1993, Riley undertook a tour as an instructor at the Staff College, Camberley that year. He was deployed as Commanding Officer of the 1st Bn The Royal Welch Fusiliers to the Muslim enclave of Goražde in 1995 under a mandate to ensure the Serbs did not violate the NATO ultimatum. The Army of Republika Srpska attacked the town without warning, capturing 33 soldiers under Riley's command and several hundred other fellow United Nations peacekeepers in May. Having halted the initial Serb attack, the battalion handed over the defence of the enclave successfully to the Bosnian 81st Division. During the siege that followed, Protocol was broken when first the Director of Military Operations, then the Chief of the General Staff and finally Prime Minister John Major telephoned Riley to be briefed on the situation. The enclave was successfully defended and unlike Srebrenica and Zepa it never fell to the Serbs; the 33 Fusiliers and fellow UN peacekeepers were later rescued safely. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Order for gallant and distinguished services in the Former Republic of Yugoslavia in 1996 and promoted to full colonel in July 1997.
Promoted to brigadier on 31 December 1998, Riley became Commander of 1st Mechanised Brigade in Bosnia in 1999 and Commander of the UK Joint Task Force in Sierra Leone in 2000. He was awarded the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service for his service in Sierra Leone, which successfully concluded the ten-year war there. and became Deputy Commandant of the Staff College and Director of the Higher Command and Staff Course in 2001.
Riley was deployed as Deputy Commanding General of the Coalition Military Advisory and Training Team in Iraq in May 2003 and then became Commanding General Multi-National Division (South East), Iraq and GOC British Forces in November 2004 with promotion to major-general. In 2005, he was awarded the United States' Legion of Merit for his service in Iraq.
Riley served as Colonel of the Royal Welch Fusiliers, from 2006 to 2007.
On 18 December 2007, Riley was promoted to the rank of lieutenant-general and appointed deputy commander of the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. He was awarded the NATO Meritorious Service Medal by the Secretary-General of NATO and, having been appointed Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 2008 New Year Honours, he transferred to the reserve on 15 September 2009.
On 14 December 2009, Riley gave evidence to The Iraq Inquiry in which he stated that British troops had not expected to be faced with an insurgency and also defended the decision to disband the Iraqi Army after the invasion. Then, in February 2011, he gave evidence at the trial of Radovan Karadžić at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague on the incident in May 1995 when his troops had been held in captivity.
Riley was appointed Director General and Master of the Royal Armouries, Britain's national collection of arms and armour, early in September 2009, but resigned in November 2012. Subsequently, he was appointed Visiting Professor in War Studies at King's College London.
Riley has written and edited a number of books on military history, including: