AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2443 times:
A call has gone out to assemble an international fleet with which to enforce the provisions of a UN Security Council Resolution against North Korea which the United States contends requires an embargo on specified equipment in shipments to and from that country. But senior officers of the Royal Navy fear that Britain may be "too weak" to contribute a significant force, according to a recent report.
Britain's naval ships, which once ruled the seas, have been reduced by nearly a third under Labor, the news account said, and as a result, with Royal Navy ships tied down in the Middle East, Britain might be able to contribute only a frigate, a submarine, and an auxiliary ship to international efforts to impose the quarantine. Furthermore, British ships would rely on the over-the-horizon capabilities of other naval vessels for protection.
Since China has expressed opposition to the proposed blockade, fears were also expressed that the international fleet could encounter ships of the Chinese Navy, leading to a possible confrontation, the report said.
The article also said that the centerpiece of the naval inspection force could be the U.S.S. Kitty Hawk, a 90,000-ton aircraft carrier stationed in the Northeast Asian area. The carrier leads a regional fleet of sixty ships and three hundred and fifty aircraft.
PlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11251 posts, RR: 63 Reply 1, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 2428 times:
Well if the news report is telling the truth and they really are that thinly spread, I have to ask why they are continuing to cut back on resources. It looks like they are going to close another Naval base soon here in the UK, so we'll have just the two left.
The article doesn't mention that the cut backs in our navy began long before Labour's term in office, well before the Falklands we had dramatically cut our Navy's size from the days when Britannia ruled the waves, but the recent slashes by Labour have certainly not helped at all. If we do have trouble sending a sizable contingent then its not going to be good news for the government, who are already having a very rough ride over Iraq as well as policy closer to home.
I'm sure though that we will send something, after all, got to keep the British end up
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 2, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 2423 times:
Thank you for your kind response.
It seems to me that the Royal Navy is planning to deploy some very serious combat power in the near future, in the form of the new carrier it's building. I believe that it would be the largest carrier ever built for the Royal Navy, and almost as large as U.S. carriers. I do not know whether her keel has even been laid yet, but the design appears promising.
I hope you are right that the Royal Navy will be sending ships. It may be much smaller than it was before, but it has a very good reputation and, pound for pound, ship for ship, there is probably none better.
By the way, according to the above, the prime contractor for the new Royal Navy carrier is BAE Systems. It seems to me that if The Boeing Company acquires BAE Systems (also sometimes colloquially known as British Aerospace), as sometimes speculated could be possible since BAE has just divested itself of any interest in Airbus, then it may be that Boeing might end up as the prime contractor for that carrier.
Currently, Boeing does not build aircraft carriers or any other ships. Naval shipbuilding is conducted in the United States by subsidiaries of Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics, and other companies.
According to its Website, BAE Systems is Europe's largest defense contractor -- larger than European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (EADS), the owner of Airbus. It is, therefore, a very substantial conglomerate. Offhand, I would say that if Boeing acquires or merges with BAE, then it appears to me that it will leapfrog over Lockheed Martin to become the world's largest defense contractor.
Interestingly, given the diversity of Boeing's businesses, its closest European corporate peer isn't really Airbus, which is simply a subsidiary of EADS, but EADS itself.
(Note: The above is not to be relied upon in any way, as I have not actually looked at the facts and figures concerning the sizes of the various companies involved to verify my comments.)
PlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11251 posts, RR: 63 Reply 3, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 2412 times:
Yes there are currently a couple of the $2.5 billion aircraft carriers on order for the British Navy, which will support current aircraft due to be in service when they are launched as well as the joint strike fighter. I'm not sure if it'll end up with Boeing having much to do with building them, as France may order a third ship for themselves which would bring the cost down for all parties, but in turn they want the ships to be built in France. I can't remember if this has already been decided or not, but you can imagine what the British public would think of that happening, as our own shipyards lie idle.
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 4, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 2411 times:
If, purely hypothetically, Boeing acquires or merges with BAE Systems, the prime contractor, then Boeing might still maintain the subcontracting out to Thales, the French conglomerate, and the physical building of the French version of the French Navy's carrier within France.
It would be quite an expansion for Boeing if it buys or merges with BAE Systems, even as big as it is already.
I'm not sure it would play well, as you have noted, with British labor, or, for that matter, with France, given the rivalry between Boeing and Airbus. The French consider Airbus part of their own.
Skidmarks From UK - England, joined Dec 2004, 7121 posts, RR: 60 Reply 5, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 2389 times:
Apart from ships, the Royal Navy has a recruitment problem. It simply cannot get enough personel to fill the vacancies it has got and people are leaving the service faster than they can be repalced.
Until the government of the UK wakes up to the fact that we are now taking on more duties than we had during the cold war (when at least we had the forces to do it) and that our armed forces are now so stretched as to be ineffective, then any further commitment would be futile and a token gesture.
We couldn't defend the UK now if we wanted to, and to continue to send understrength forces to places around the world, with crap equipment and poor support, is nothing short of criminal.
Klaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 20899 posts, RR: 55 Reply 6, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week 11 hours ago) and read 2375 times:
It's very similar to the US situation: If your troop strength seems insufficient, it can either be because you actually have too little resources, or it could be that you unnecessarily involved yourself in more conflicts than your reasonably sized force could handle.
Calling for more troops is always easy, but calling for better leadership might actually be more effective and more to the actual point.
Years of careful planning and billions in your respective favourite currency can't make up for a few hasty and ill-conceived policy decisions, so without plugging the gaping hole at the bottom it doesn't really matter how much you're pouring in at the top...
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 8, posted (6 years 8 months 1 week ago) and read 2294 times:
The proposed RN commitment to any Korean blockade is about what you'd expect, even without recent cuts.
This is an area mainly for the USN, the sizeable Japanese fleet, to name two of the main players.
There is a painful transition going on, fewer but eventually, bigger ships-check the size of the Type 45's compared to the old Type 42's they will replace-of course the capability is 2 or even 3 generations ahead too.
IF enough are ordered, 6 are on order, two more are needed to provide two each for each proposed carrier group, two for the amphibious ready group-an area which has seen dramatic capability increases in recent years, two for general patrol, two in refit/working up.
However, the issue of a new frigate is becoming urgent-a proposal for a cut down Type 45 is one sensible option, ASTER 15 SAM's but not ASTER 30, not the powerful air search radar, but low manpower requirements, a bigger sonar, 155mm gun, a more general purpose ship.
However, France will only buy 2 of their Type 45 equivalent, have an older, less capable frigate force, the newer ones being lightly armed.
But-they might be on to something with the latter, for general patrolling duties rather than task group escorts.
Could it be the RN should look to having something similar, for duties like West Indies guardship, anti piracy, maintaining blockades etc?
The question has been asked before, but the fear has always been that getting such lower capability ships, large corvettes really, would take away from mainstream frigates, not supplement them.
The only time that did not happen was in the 70's when 8 commercially designed Type 21's were built, they allowed quick replacements of obselete vessels.
But, in the major shooting war, in the Falklands, two were lost, they had very poor anti air defence, though in fairness 7 of the 8 were involved, working very hard on shore bombardment, providing that gun line that prevented enemy aircraft from hitting large vunerable transports during the landings, anti sub patrol, one sank an Argentine military supply ship trying to run the blockade-a surprise at night, 4.5 inch gun was used, rather than the Frigate's MM-38 Exocets.
But post war, the light construction, lack of space, precluded major updates-for instance with Sea Wolf SAM's replacing Sea Cats, so the 6 remaining were sold to Pakistan after an early retirement.
So the RN will tolerate smaller numbers to retain capability, however we may be at a point where a size limit has been reached.
Ozair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 680 posts, RR: 1 Reply 10, posted (6 years 8 months 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 2222 times:
The RN is really in a very transitional period. I recently toured the Portsmouth naval yard and was surprised at how many ships had been laid up. Most of the Type 22 frigates are now out of service, an invincible class carrier is in ready reserve until 2011 when the Indians get it and the delays to the Type 45s are not helping either.
Manpower is an issue but the RN is facing what many other western world navies and air forces are also going through. Legacy equipment ordered in the the 80s is reaching the end of it's service life and there is just no threat big enough to warrant it's one for one replacement. Combine this with the recruitment problems (faced by every western navy not just the RN, the RAN can't find enough entry officers either) as Skids said and you have a navy that will face serious issues rebuilding a true blue waters capability when the new carriers finally arrive.
Quoting GDB (Reply 8): However, France will only buy 2 of their Type 45 equivalent, have an older, less capable frigate force, the newer ones being lightly armed.
A similar way the RAN has slowly upgraded their ANZAC class frigates. A real bare-bones system to begin with but slowly they are being transformed into a decent multi-role frigate.
Baroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 60 Reply 11, posted (6 years 8 months 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 2199 times:
Quoting Klaus (Reply 6): Calling for more troops is always easy, but calling for better leadership might actually be more effective and more to the actual point.
How irritating when you are correct Klaus.
Someone may not have thought through very carefully on the problems of naming three enemies, especially when a fourth was simply resting and not defeated!
Quoting GDB (Reply 8): The proposed RN commitment to any Korean blockade is about what you'd expect, even without recent cuts.
This is an area mainly for the USN, the sizeable Japanese fleet, to name two of the main players.
So how would a current UK effort compare to sending Meteors and Seafires to the earlier effort? Probably the navy effort in 1950 was a bit more sparkling than it could manage now.
I rather doubt a repeat of this effort however:
"With the Cold War under way, Attlee's government secretly decided to proceed with the development of Britain's nuclear deterrent, in opposition to the pacifist and anti-nuclear stances of a large element inside the Labour Party. Defence became one of the divisive issues for Labour itself, especially defence spending (which reached 10% of GDP in 1950 during the Korean War). Aneurin Bevan eventually left the government over this issue and the introduction of prescription charges which Harold Wilson ((President of the Board of Trade) also resigned over. "
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 12, posted (6 years 8 months 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 2153 times:
The Argentine Navy is much weaker now, than in 1982.
With a sizeable airbase and 'trip wire' Tornado F.3, Rapier SAM's, infantry, the Islands are, unlike 1982, actually defended, more to the point, capable of rapid reinforcement.
4 of the Batch 3 Type 22's have been retained, since these, built to replace Falklands war losses, have the 4.5 inch gun, Harpoon SSMs, a Goalkeeper 30mm CIWS, plus flag and command facilities.
Whereas the Batch 1's (now sold to Brazil) and longer Batch 2's, both were specialised anti sub vessels, with no medium caliber gun.
Really, the Type 23's, are better for the escort role, as well as being capable general purpose vessels too.
The structure is going to amphibious and carrier power projection, overdue as well, despite the cuts, at least there is a plan now, whereas through the early/mid 1990's there was not.
Invincible is in reserve, however Ark Royal was too for a lot of the 1990's, it is potentionally available if needed.
However, budget pressures are real, as they always have been.
From the late 60's through the 70's, the RN moved from a largely 'East Of Suez' power projection, to a North Atlantic ASW force.
The proposed 1981 cuts, which really would have crippled the RN, were, ironically, greatly reduced by the Argentine junta.
Manpower, a perennial problem, at least can be alleivated by modern vessels needing smaller crews.
RichardPrice From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 13, posted (6 years 8 months 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 2134 times:
Quoting Baroque (Reply 11): So how would a current UK effort compare to sending Meteors and Seafires to the earlier effort? Probably the navy effort in 1950 was a bit more sparkling than it could manage now.
The Navy in 1950 was 5 years after a massive world war, a period of the largest military build up ever seen - of course the RN was more 'sparkling' in its effort then.
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 14, posted (6 years 8 months 6 days ago) and read 2108 times:
Everyone, thank you for your informative and detailed answers.
GDB, might I say that the weaker state of both the British and Argentine navies are perhaps not to be unexpected in this day and age, because the Cold War is over and for other reasons.
However, I've read references to arms races in Latin America, and I was wondering if, perhaps, with President Chavez causing quite a stir, that region may yet find cause to reinforce its militaries.
As for the United States, the Pentagon intends to increase the number of our major combat vessels from 281 to 313.
The state of our Navy is, thankfully, rather good, although there are complaints about the decline in the priority of naval aviation. Although the numbers of shipbuilders have declined in the last several decades, the issue of maintaining a strong industrial base necessary for production of large naval vessels is among those the Department of Defense keeps among its portfolio of present and future needs. I am given to understand that the average age of our vessels is acceptable, thanks in large measure to the retirement of older destroyers and cruisers and the introduction of new guided missile destroyers, particularly of the Arleigh Burke class. I daresay each of our destroyers maintains more capacity that most of our cruisers did twenty years ago.
Derico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4233 posts, RR: 13 Reply 16, posted (6 years 8 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2034 times:
Argentina has 'grown up', which is why is not joining any such increase in armaments you see in the rest of the region. Argentina right now has a lot of tax renevue growth, it could potentially make some interesting upgrades but in fact it has CUT military expenditures.
Ironic how the third most advanced nation in human development in the Americas actually is spending more in social development and less in military huh?
Furthermore Argentina has pledged never to go to war over the Falklands, and you can be sure that is a fact as many people in Argentina, unlike what some might claim, was anti-war back then. In 82 he biggest rock bands of the time did a huge concert to 'support the troops', but also to sing very much anti-war songs that are now classics of Argentine rock.
The money that was invested in the military in the past is now going to massive construction of interprovincial expressways, trains and high speed trains, dams, housing, schools, urban renewal, and nuclear power plants nationwide. Remember, Argentina's bicentennial is in 2010, and now every province wants to look like sapphires for that date.
My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 17, posted (6 years 8 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 2028 times:
Derico, it's good to read that Argentina is spending money on improving infrastructure rather than building up its military unnecessarily. I have high hopes for the people of South America.
Like many others, I believe that there is an unnecessary opposition between the United States and Latin America. If Venezuela's Hugo Chavez has things his way, his country would increase the strife between the two of them.
The real needs of countries like Argentina, it seems to me, would contrast with the sabre-rattling of people like Chavez, who, in my view, can't be voted out of office fast enough.
Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 14): GDB, might I say that the weaker states of both the British and Argentine navies are perhaps not to be unexpected in this day and age, because the Cold War is over and for other reasons.
GDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 12735 posts, RR: 79 Reply 18, posted (6 years 8 months 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 2014 times:
Though we had 10% of GDP defence spending-to the bad effect to UK post war economic recovery, the massive manpower of conscription, the sheer number of worldwide deployments-80,000 in the Suez Canal zone alone, meant that equipment modernisation was very limited.
Getting the nukes and V-Bomber programmes going-remember from 1945-58, the UK was totally cut off from the US Atomic programme, cost a pretty penny too.
In fact, not until they were deployed, conscription ended, overseas deployments rationalised, did major modernisation occur.
Derico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4233 posts, RR: 13 Reply 21, posted (6 years 8 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 1962 times:
Quoting AerospaceFan (Reply 17): Derico, it's good to read that Argentina is spending money on improving infrastructure rather than building up its military unnecessarily. I have high hopes for the people of South America.
Argentina in reality has really good infraestructure, in many areas comparable to the OECD (Western Europe, etc). It will have even better infraestructure in a few years.
We have always been a bit of the odd one out in Latin America, in good things and in really bad ones too. As has been said countless times before, Argentina is a 1st world country in human development but a 3rd world nation in political development, making her a '2nd world' country. Anyone who has been in Argentina would tend to agree...
Argentina and the USA have been at odds a few times, but it's never been overly extreme. And that is mostly out of the fact that we are a country with a somewhat distinct outlook in the region from both Latin America and North America.
My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 22, posted (6 years 8 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 1956 times:
Quoting Derico (Reply 21): Argentina and the USA have been at odds a few times, but it's never been overly extreme. And that is mostly out of the fact that we are a country with a somewhat distinct outlook in the region from both Latin America and North America
That's good to know, Derico. I've never been to Argentina, but some day I hope to visit it.
Years ago, a favorite teacher of mine was a musician from Argentina -- a cantankerous fellow with a heart of gold.
Perhaps some day Latin Americans and Americans will set aside their prejudices and understand each other more on the basis of commonality than any remembrance of historical discomfiture.
AerospaceFan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 24, posted (6 years 8 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 1951 times:
Quoting Wingscrubber (Reply 23): There's too many resources tied up in this stupid war for oil, lo and behold the minute a real threat emerges, no one's available to help. China have a navy don't they?
Yes, it does, but apparently the fear is that it will be used against coalition forces, and not against North Korea.
25 Ozair: Not only do they have a navy but we are seeing a massive generational change in their equipment. They continue to build at a rapid rate and every two
26 Baroque: I remember it well except the fact that the US had cut the UK off from the nuclear program was not exactly advertised. Spies and all, it was a pretty
27 AerospaceFan: Baroque, what a great answer. I really appreciate it. I was, indeed, referring to the NHS and similar programs, and I was not aware that they were not
28 Baroque: Items such as the NHS were a cost to Treasury, but working out the exact cost is difficult because they replaced a number of patches that were also f
29 GDB: Indeed Baroque, it is often forgotten what a damaged, clapped out, bankrupt state the UK was at war's end. But the Atlee government was voted in with
30 AerospaceFan: Reading your account was almost like going back in time, GDB! Well done.
31 Baroque: No, but "who do you think you are kidding Mr Hitler" went down really well. An excellent summary GDB. In retrospect, I am still stunned most of all t
32 AerospaceFan: It occurs to me that the gradual alienation of Canada and Australia from Great Britain is the product of historical forces greater than that which nat
33 Baroque: That is probably true, but diverting a convoy up to Burma that was supposed to be returning an Aus Division back to defend Australia at a time when t
34 AerospaceFan: Baroque, your knowlege of the military details is far greater than mine, so I will, of course, defer to you as to such. And I am in agreement with you
35 Baroque: You need to blame my son for buying me a copy of Day's book. I sort of knew the bits of the story, but when they are put together with the relationsh
36 AerospaceFan: History is fascinating indeed. I only wish I had enough time to read more of it. I greatly appreciate your contributions to this Forum, regardless of