Iain Ballantyne

Iain Ballantyne


Iain’s writing assignments have taken him flying over the Norwegian Arctic with the UK’s Commando Helicopter Force, on patrols with the Royal Marines in Ulster’s so-called Bandit Country (during the Troubles) and into sea minefields off war-torn Kuwait and even into the Bosnian war zone.

Winner of a British Maritime Charitable Foundation (BMCF) Special Recognition Award for his ‘consistent and unwavering contribution to raising maritime awareness over the years’, as a journalist Iain Ballantyne covered the front line activities of navies around the world.

Aside from being one of the few writers to voyage beneath the waves in a Royal Navy nuclear-powered submarine, he has also visited closed zones in Russia, including Murmansk, Kronstadt and the Crimea.

When it comes to writing on naval history Iain’s action-packed account of WW2 sea combat, ‘Killing the Bismarck’, garnered a Mountbatten Maritime Award Certificate of Merit while his ground-breaking ‘Hunter Killers’ was the first book to tell the truth behind several dangerous episodes in the Cold War under the sea.

A one-time London-based defence and diplomatic correspondent for a national news agency, Iain has contributed to coverage of naval and defence issues in The Sunday Telegraph, Western Morning News and Scotland-on-Sunday, as well as prestigious publications published on behalf of NATO and the Royal Navy.

In addition to being founding (and current) Editor of the global naval news magazine ‘WARSHIPS International Fleet Review’ Iain also produces HPC Publishing’s popular ‘Guide to the Royal Navy’.

Aside from regularly commentating on geo-political naval affairs and maritime history for regional television and radio, Iain’s other varied pursuits in the past have included movie reviewing (for newspapers, magazines and radio) and co-devising a six-part wine game show (broadcast on the UK’s Channel 4). Iain also for some years worked on numerous projects for London-based Grosvenor Film, both in project conceptualization and script-writing.

Iain’s public speaking engagements have included giving a talk on the pursuit and destruction of battleship Bismarck at the National Museum of the Royal Navy and, most recently, a very well received talk on the same topic at the Naval & Military Club, St James’s. Earlier this year (2016) he spoke on issues surrounding renewal of the UK’s Trident nuclear deterrent to the Defence Society of Westminster School.

Iain Ballantyne @IBallantyn

There's a 4-page words & pics round-up of exploits by @RoyalNavy River Class (Batch 1 and 2) OPVs nxt edition of @WarshipsIFR, out July 17 & avail in shops such as @WHSmith & @sainsburys in UK & elsewhere globally
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyObib8UEgA Or get it direct https://bit.ly/wifrsub

Amazing little story. @NavalAirHistory @AC_NavalHistory @NavalHistWar @navalhistorian @IBallantyn @NavalAuthor @sworrall https://twitter.com/psywarorg/status/1279095181053235200

#OTD #WW2 1944 Monty visits #RoyalNavy #battleship HMS Rodney - just bombarded targets at Carpiquet a/field as bitter struggle ashore conts. Here's extract + Monty & Rodney sailors on cover of p/b 'HMS Rodney' Also avail as kindle https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00DN5V4ZY/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i0 @PenSwordeBooks #dday76

Finally, for #ThrowbackThursday amid headlines on Russian #submarine upsurge, here's other blog on 'Only the Dead Have Seen the Last of Submarine Warfare' circa 2018, draws on @WarshipsIFR work, 'Hunter Killers' @orionbooks & 'The Deadly Trade' @wnbooks http://iainballantyne.com/only-the-dead-have-seen-the-last-of-submarine-warfare-part-one/

Who'd have thought it!? Russia is turning to its submarine force again in order to test @NATO Some relevant submarine warfare thoughts from 'The Deadly Trade' @wnbooks aka 'The Deadly Deep' @Pegasus_Books in the USA http://iainballantyne.com/tag/cold-war/ for #ThrowbackThursday #Submarines

#ThrowbackThursday & first blog on my web site http://iainballantyne.com/2013/11/ feat 'Hunter Killers' @orionbooks AKA 'Undersea Warriors' @Pegasus_Books in USA. More info http://iainballantyne.com/hunter-killers/ #Submarines #coldwarhist #SSBN #SSN #Navies

During Battle of Arnhem #WW2 the Germans thought they had it sussed with psy ops on British #Airborne troops inc playing #VeraLynn at them...but it didn't have the desired effect as told here from 'Arnhem: Ten Days in The Cauldron' @AgoraBooksLDN https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07WGHHX55/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i6 #arnhem

#WW2 late June 1944 #battleship HMS Rodney bringing fire to bear inland as Allied troops seek breakout during Operation Epsom. Extracts from 'HMS Rodney' @penswordbooks https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00DN5V4ZY/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_tkin_p1_i0 Offshore mines still take their toll #RoyalNavy #dday76

@RoyalNavy frigate @HMS_Westminster (nearest) & patrol ship @hms_tyne (furthest) escort #RussianNavy destroyer Vice Admiral Kulakov in the Channel few days ago, not first time these #UK vessels performed that task in recent months. Photo: Lt Adam Webb #RoyalNavy #ArmedForcesDay

And here's @RoyalNavy Duke Class (Type 23) @HMS_Westminster in a video posted to @WarshipsIFR TV not long before she kept an eye on the Russian warship in the Channel https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmZMaKP1OjI #RoyalNavy #Warships @HMNBDevonport
https://twitter.com/WarshipsIFR/status/1276779010899525638?s=20 #ArmedForcesDay2020

I am not going to respond to all the questions, but will point out that the article covers repairs etc. the article has been in the making a long time. #OSINT https://www.forbes.com/sites/hisutton/2020/06/23/image-shows-russian-submarine-appearing-to-break-international-treaty/

Amazing statistic in today's context - the US Navy in 1963 was able to launch 4 subs - 3 ballistic missile submarines, 1 attack boat - in one day. Not only that, from 3 shipyards - 2 from Electric Boat, 1 from Newport News, 1 from Naval Shipyard Mare Island. #armsrace https://twitter.com/USNHistory/status/1275096318151667712

For #TimetravelTuesday two @WarshipsIFR covers that feat historic #battleship USS Wisconsin @NauticusNorfolk #USA & HMS Cavalier @DockyardChatham in #UK
@WISCONSINASSOC #hmscavalier For more covers & what's inside straight to you https://www.tandymedia.com/warships-ifr/ #Warships #NavalHistory

#OTD 1944 #WW2 the mine menace & how to counter it/avoid falling victim - occupies the minds of Allied navies off #Normandy not least the ship's company of #battleship HMS Rodney https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00DN5V4ZY/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_hsch_vapi_taft_p1_i0 Extracts from 'HMS Rodney' @PenSwordeBooks Mine explosion pic @USNHistory

Today marks the 80th anniversary of Britain's Airborne Forces. On this day in 1940, Winston Churchill recommended that at least five thousand parachute troops should be recruited to help in the fight against Hitler:


A suspected #Chinese #submarine is being tracked in and near #Japanese waters; Japan MoD reported 20 June the sub was west of Kagoshima. Helicopter carrier KAGA, #destroyers AKIZUKI and ASHIGARA and naval P-1 and P-3C #ASW anti-submarine aircraft are tracking the sub https://twitter.com/NavalNews/status/1274318333161222144

On this day in 1919, German admiral Ludwig von Reuter deliberately scuttles the impounded High Seas Fleet at Scapa Flow before it can be claimed by the Allies. Here's how it happened: https://militaryhistorynow.com/2019/05/12/final-act-of-defiance-audacious-german-admiral-scuttles-own-fleet-in-british-waters/

“James Bond is no hero for us.” A longer version of our exclusive interview with Russia’s spy chief Sergei Naryshkin. We were the first foreign journalists allowed to film here at the SVR, Russia’s MI6. Camera/edit @mattgodtv Producer @BBCWillVernon @BBCNews @BBCWorld.

a cooler sighting than a whale! https://twitter.com/SWBAnnapolis/status/1274349098951495681

#OTD 1854: The first Victoria Cross, Britain's highest medal for bravery, was awarded to Charles Lucas.