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criss of herts

No disrespect, but do you really believe all the bullshit, these so called experts tells you, or a corrupt incompetent government, with military top brass who are just as guilty to covering up things,
Some of these guys would tell you we are fully capable of protecting all UK assets with only one multy , triple quadruple roll dingy .
Laugh as you may, but this is typical a British disease, a case of we see nothing , do nothing , say nothing , until we are hit, then and only then we will talk about it, to little to late,
But it all boils down to money,, yes money money money,
All you get from the incompetent and the do gooders, is we have no money, , and yet these same people waste billions each year,
And we all wonder why we have nothing,. No point in telling us how great the subs are and the type 45, and the tridents, ect ect , but these will not be used to patrol our coasts will they,

The whole point is simple, yet difficult to explain to incompetent politicians,
Either you spend the money to defend yourselves properly, or just disband the bloody lot,
We need 3 navy out stations, one on the east coast around Yarmouth, one up north, and one in west Wales, each with a compliment of a minimum 12 ships, consisting of patrol , and mine sweepers ,
Protection search and stop boats, well armed by the way,
And proper coast guards boats, , between them you would have a minimum of say 48-50
Ships ranging in size from 50 tons through to 1,000 tons, well defended and protected patrolling our coastline, and our recourses,
This back up with a minimum 12 maritime patrol aircraft, ,
A good idea , or a silly comment , you choose, but somewhere in that little idea is a fully funded strong patrol protection ships, to defend our coast,
It only takes money,
Even your ideas, only take money, and this and previous government have wasted billions,
Just a simple idea ,

Ichabod

Check out the Norwegian Navy ship list on Wikipedia:
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Royal_Norwegian_Navy_ships#section_1

Their 5-frigate blue water navy sits at the pinnacle of a balanced base of 6 missile patrol boats, 7 minehunters and 13 armed Coastguard vessels Coastguard is part of the Navy) – plus 6 long-range patrol aircraft.

If the public is to support strategic extra-territorial defence efforts they need to see that the basics of home defence are being covered, and see the practical benefits of a Navy/Coastguard that delivers fishery protection and search and rescue.

Barrie Cavill

I have just finished reading “The Battle of the Atlantic” by John Costello and Terry Hughes. It showed how initially a small number of U Boats played havoc with the conveys bringing supplies across the Atlantic. At that time the Royal Navy was the world’s biggest navy. The Home Fleet alone had around 100 destroyers. There were a number of times when the U Boats almost won the battle. Thank goodness for the breaking of the Enigma Code. Today Britain would be quickly overwhelmed in an attack. The new super destroyers(only 6 being built) would be a drop in the ocean(pun intended). Why do we have to have such expensive warships. Would it not be better to build a number of lower tech ships to do general work

4th Watch

Yep- John Costello was a friend of mine and dedicated to the Royal Navy and Britains Maritime heritage. Unfortunately nowadays all the main political parties and especially the BBC seem asleep in this department.

Books such as the Battle of the Atlantic should be compulsory holiday reading for the likes of Cameron.

All this should start with education. I was lucky to have a school master who took it upon himself to give us a course on Britain’s Maritime (Naval ) History. Maybe Cameron could start with a home studies course for his kids. He might learn something in the process.

4th Watch

It is amazing that there is so little regard for the ‘inshore squadron’ in the RN. Especially with the terrorist threat but also with a resurgent threat in the Falklands and possibly from other sources closer to home it should be a priority to get this sorted out.

One can always make excuses for doing nothing, but I see little or no leadership or appreciation from the top brass.

The inshore patrol craft are old, slow and are too small. A new design and construction of at least 25-30 metres is long overdue. Endurance cannot be provided in ribs or the existing craft.
There are no maritime patrol aircraft. This is a role that should be firmly placed with the Fleet air arm or coastguard. The USA are far more savy
and are reported to be building up their inshore flotilla.
Vosper Thorneycroft and Brooke Marine used to do this sort of thing but with Bae the whole thing has gone to pot as far as I can tell and they are thinking of scrapping Portsmouth construction facility entirely.
There seems to be no direction from the Government or anyone else.
This is a shambles.
If a reasonable investment was made it would be self financing in terms of export.
In days gone bye, the inshore squadron was the seed bed of seamanship, initiative and training.
One wonders if all the recent RN groundings could have been avoided if the RN placed more emphasis on acquiring basic skills in seamanship and small ship handling via taking a greater emphasis on coastal patrol and surveillance.
This need not be expensive but to ignore it could be very costly indeed.

Allan Gunniss

When I joined the RN in the early 60s, it was pounded into us that the UK as an island nation depended on the Royal Navy to defend our sea lanes and the Fleet we had at the time was enough to carry out the task.
However over the years, I have watched the Naval decline to the point we are at now.
At 276 ships the US Navy is now operating at a tempo that is overstreching crews and equipment. and Senior US Naval Leaders have been saying nfor some time that the current force in terms of personell and platforms is inedequate and could not simultaneously handle extended conflicts in two different theatres.
A similar numbers shortfall, but on a different scale afflicts the Royal Navy. With a total force of 30 + ships our Navy currently ranks below France, India, and Japan not to mention China whos Navy outnumbers the combined navies of all three countries. So it has become very clear that Britains ability to act independently with a major Naval Force – as she did in the Falklands in 1982 and will surely have to do again at crisis points in the future – has almost disappeared ship by ship and squadron by squadron in the past 25 years.
Both countries have rich maritime pasts and dramatic histories that demonstrate the critical role that Navies play in National Security, the lessons learned at great cost are being ignored, along with the Myth and popular wisdom that a larger Navy is not affordable. Affordability is not the real issue. The truth being that both countries have chosen politically not to support a larger Force.
The evidence that makes this case is not measured in Pounds or Dollars, the critical common denominations are the respective percentages of GDP devoted to National Defence, in the case of the the US it is roughly 4% and in Britain it is 2.5%.
To fix the value of National Defenceat figures like that is absurd and dangerous, each nation could and should be devoting at least 5% of GDP to its Defence. If the politicians and Media Establishments took hold of this reality, it would be a start towards what should be Goverments first priority ” A Naval Rebuilding Programme” and a proper defence.

Edward Philpott

What is required along with boats is a maritime patrol aircraft which the British did have but scrapped in haste (Nimrod MR4). With out one to act as high flying eyes for the RN all the people/arms smugglers and terrorist will find their jobs a lot simpler to do.

2 choices are available:
The Boeing P-8 or a quick conversion to some Airbus A340s. Or if you are prepared to wait a roll on /roll off facilty for the A400. The A340 has 4 engines.On long patrols shut down 2 and cruise. To avoid long redesign work to give it a weopons bay strengthen the wing to take weopons pylons and eqiup the fusilage with a FLIR turret. Add wing tip sensors/counter measures.To increase duration add a inflight refueling probe.To quicken reloading time torps/antiship missiles/marker buoys and AA missles could be loaded up in streamlined pods for rapid arming /rearming(think Boeings Silent Eagle).

4th watch

Agreed that the navy put on a brave display for the Olympics, but the fact remains there is little it could do against a serious asymetric attack at home but especially abroad. I would like to see it building up its coastal forces before my WW2 veteran from the Clyde minesweeping squadron is volunteered for service again; or is that the future?

Jack Tar

I agree with everything written above, and according to the Royal Navy’s own 2020 Reserve Forces review “The National Security Council should examine the breadth of roles which Reservists undertake. We recommend that Reservists should play a greater part in Homeland Security (for example, maritime coastal protection) and UK Resilience.”

Furthermore it has also been suggested that a more joined up approach in terms of civilian and military resources similar to the approach taken in Australia (Coast Watch) may help improve the current situation, with a multitude of agencies such as the Royal Navy Fishery Protection River Class, the three vessels of the Scottish Fishery Protection Agency, the five Border Agency Cutters, local coastguard vessels and police marine units all operating independently. The National Maritime Information Centre may also help in this respect, as will better Pan-European Intelligence through closer EU Collaboration.

There are some positives though, the National Coastwatch Institution has since 1994 seen the opening by volunteers of some 40 old Coastguard Look Out Stations, with more planned according to their website. Whilst other Volunteer Groups such as the RNLI and Maritime Volunteer Service do superb work. Whilst there is also the real possibility of new maritime patrol aircraft being including in the 2015 Defence Review according to some recent reports, with Boeing eager to interest the British Government in it’s P-8 Aircraft.

In terms of the recent review of reserve forces, we can only hope that the Royal Navy Reserve are given a greater role and better equipment in relation to Counter Terrorism, Civil Contingency and UK Resilience, as part of a renewed effort to increase our maritime security and homeland defence.