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Random Commentator

The French, Spanish and Italians all have carriers and are a lot nearer the scene than we are – why do we never hear of them in operation to keep the Red Sea open? What do you think Trump will say if the the EU continues to avoid its fair share of keeping Europe protected?

Whale Island Zookeeper

Or better still, isn’t Turkey in NATO? What are they going to do with 12 submarines, 16 frigates, 9 corvettes, 1 assault ship, oodles of patrol craft, and lots of landing craft?

I am only pulling your leg. 😉 🙂

Random Commentator

NATO supporting Turkey taking over Lebanon would be doing everyone a favour!

Whale Island Zookeeper

The failure of Lebanon could be traced back to Europe being militarily weak and relying on the US too much, The Med should be a European boating lake. If Europe had some muscle there would have been no invasion of Cyprus. And so on. You can play counterfactuals with it all day and go down some real rabbit holes.

AlexS

The failure of Lebanon traces back to the changes in Christian vs Islamic
population.
Christian population decreased and leftist media in Europe, -pretty much all media- supported the Arab Socialist side and its terrorists in 1960’s 70’s.

Whale Island Zookeeper

Yes.

Duker

Israel stole the land of the Palestinians in ’48

And then in their 1970s invasion allowed the IDF surrounded the Muslim refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila an d allowed around 2500 to be massacred . Twice those massacred outside Gaza in 7 Oct 2023

‘In February 1983, an independent commission chaired by Irish diplomat Seán MacBride, assistant to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, concluded that the IDF, as the then occupying power over Sabra and Shatila, bore responsibility for the militia’s massacre”

Last edited 19 days ago by Duker
Peter Gardner

You know that is not true.

English Tom

Actually it is true. The Israelis have long been practitioners of massacring civilians, even up to this very day.

Andy a

Really? Is Hitler alive and well? Living in Argentina?

Sean

You’ve graduated from posting conspiracy theories to outright untruths now.

Supportive Bloke

Perhaps you mean Trumpian facts?

Sean

Same thing!

Will

Actually, Duker, there was this whole “united nations” thing in 1948, which gave legal sanction for the creation of the modern state of Israel. Funny how emergent one worlder courts, bureaucracies, and all the rest are universally lauded and acclaimed by the postmodern secular left, except when those entities do things that postmodern secular leftists don’t like. Might even give one pause to ask whether globalism is really such a great thing after all, but that’s just me.

AlexS

NATO supporting Turkey taking over Lebanon would be doing everyone a favour!

That really is not knowing history and Erdogan government imperial desires.

Random Commentator

I do know history so I know it used to be part of Turkey only 100 years or so ago.

Duker

Lebanon was created as a separate province ( out of Syria) by the Ottoman Empire to please the French- when it was a much smaller entity from the northern suburbs of Beirut and the mountains for the Christian ( catholic aligned) Maronite church.
For unknown reasons after WW1 , it became a ‘greater Lebanon’ beyond the Maronite Mt Lebanon enclave to further north and south of Beirut and the Bekka valley

AlexS

Turkey is in side of Heezbollah and Hamas.
I don’t understand why people answer things by rote like if it is in NATO it is automatically an ally. It isn’t.

Whale Island Zookeeper

Yes. That is why I said it a leg pull.

We have Turkey as a member of Europe’s main defence alliance built up on America. And they are on the opposite side to Israel who are backed by America.

Duker

Turkiye also invaded its independent neighbour Cyprus in the mid 70s- where it remains in the northern quarter to this day …despite Cyprus being a commonwealth country, home to UK sovereign bases and later a EU country

Nothing from Nato back then, nothing from UK back then, nothing from US despite the listening posts being run by NSA, nothing from EU – who get their knickers in a twist over the ‘border’ between north and South Ireland.

Sean

Same old answer for the same old rant. Cyprus isn’t in NATO, so no article 5 intervention.

The EU is concerned about the border between the Republic of Ireland and the North because the Republic is in the EU. Cyprus wasn’t in the EU when the Turks invaded.

You keep attempting to rewrite history and hope nobody notices.

Last edited 18 days ago by Sean
Duker

So Nato members are allowed to invade their neighbours and remain according to you. They did the same in Syria more recently. Who said anything about Art 5. Nato is also a civilian side, so must have been in negotiations to resolve the invasion by one of its members.... 50 years ago next month

What about Britains interest in Cyprus, being part of the commonwealth and the bases – where the american NSA operates the listening posts.
Must be harsh sanctions surely …surely threats to the global order and rules based system.

Strangely the EU accession in 2004 was rejected by the voters of the Cypriot Republic by 76%, but we know that referendums dont count for EU mandarins and their fellow travellers

Jon

You say nothing about the Nationalist Junta taking over Greece, and their Cypriot coup d’etat which prompted the Turkish invasion. President Makarios wasn’t ousted by Turks, was he? Given that a Greek President, an Archbishop of the Greek Orthodox Church, wasn’t Greek enough for the Greek Nationalists and had to flee for his life, what do you think they were planning for the Turkish Cypriot minority?

Duker

All sorted within a few months , Makarious returned within the year .
But occupation is now 50 years later.

Jon

There we can agree. The return of Karamanlis to Greece and Makarios to Cyprus could have signalled a rapprochement between the two sides. But that six months broke something that was too difficult to rebuild. I think it was a miracle that it had hung together for 14 years in the first place. Whether this is a fifty year trial separation or a de facto divorce, maybe they are better off apart than together. The best chance of reunification was through EU harmonisation, but Turkey has been rebuffed for too long, so we won’t live to see that either.

Sean

Tell where in the Charter Articles of NATO that it says a member cannot invade another country. Also show me in the treaty the process by which a NATO member can be expelled.
Actually I’ll save you some time, these DON’T exist. So why the whinging?

The hint is in the name, the Sovereign Base Area are not in the country of Cyprus, they are on the island of Cyprus. If you can’t grasp the concept, think of North Ireland.
Turkey signed the treaty of independence for Cyprus that enshrined their existence in law, and it was careful not to infringe on them during the invasion.
The commonwealth is a cultural institution and talking shop, it’s not a military alliance.
You dementia means you forget there was a Cold War against the Warsaw Pact at the time. To safeguard the West it was more important to keep Turkey onside. It’s called “realpolitik” – look it up.

Yes the EU isn’t keen on referendums that stand in the way of its aims. Which is why I’m glad we’re out.

Gunbuster

Sovereign Base areas…
Clue is in the first word.

To all intents and purposes, they are a British Overseas Territory and as such the Head of State is the King. The UK is responsible for defence amongst other things.

An attack on an SBA can be read as a NATO Article 5.

Jon

Did Turkey attack the British sovereign bases? No. Dhekelia was purposefully avoided. So Britain continued to worry about whether Wilson’s beer and sandwiches could bail us out of the strike-derived energy crisis and Article 5 didn’t enter into it.

Duker

So Putin could attack Ireland , a non NATO nation, and would face no consequences just like Turkiye . Britain’s only concern would it’s sovereign area known as northern Ireland. Being in the EU is no help as they have no military treaty either.

Sean

And the Turks were very careful not to attack them when they invaded, so there was no justification to invoke Article 5.

Duker

British overseas territory. A different beast, no difference to say Falklands or Pitcairn.

Jonno

The good news is we dont have to get involved when The Republic is invaded next year. The only problem is the open border. Still we have borders which we dont take seriously either as the UK’s ‘leftist alliance’ seem happy to go the Lebanon route, meaning the UK is finished in the 2060’s or sooner.

Sean

What on earth are you rambling on about?!?!
I think Russia has enough problems with Ukraine without attempting an invasion of the Republic of Ireland! (Though it would serve them right for claiming neutrality and not joining NATO.)

Duker

Nothing to do with Art 5 . It was outright aggression by a nato member on a defenceless neighbour.
And its still going on.
Apparently you condone this by avoiding the question- your ministerial Spads/colleagues will all be out on street this time next week . Good riddance

Sean

More paranoid ramblings from the climate-change denier… guess you don’t believe Beryl exists

Duker

They do , just you havent known about it.

So far, France, Germany, Italy and Belgium have said they plan to contribute ships.”
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2024/2/19/eu-launches-red-sea-naval-mission-to-protect-shipping-from-houthi-attacks

Random Commentator

Not carriers, which was my original point.

Duker

Britain hasnt sent a carrier either . Only the US and they have a carrier task group more or less permanently in that wider region anyway

Order of the Ditch

A few observations.
Firstly well done to the men and women of the various NATO navies doing a difficult job.
Secondly it is very disappointing that in 2024 carrier strike isn’t in good enough shape so that we can relieve the Americans. Having PoW relieve Eisenhower would have shown our value to the US and NATO allies and prove that we are still a blue water navy.
However I think it now I can quite confidently say the UK no longer has a Blue Water navy. We can muster crews for two RFA tankers, have a languishing FSS that we cannot crew, all of our new SSNs are tied up because no one bothered to ensure adequate dry dock facilities were available for the introduction of the Astute class and we are down to 9 frigates.
Very disappointing to see Labour commit so few lines of their manifesto to defence. I think we can expect more of the same, decline, cuts, fudging and capability gaps.

Challenger

It’s a really sad and worrying state of affairs.

Paul42

Fully agree! At a time when a UKCSG should be on station in the Red Sea, both carriers are laid up with no where near enough aircraft to form an effective airgroup or escorts and supply ships readily available to support them. Sadly, it’s very embarrassing for the UK/RN.

Hugo

Laid up is rather a misrepresentation of the carriers state. Certainly Prnce of Wales could deploy, but yes the supporting elements are hugely lacking

Sean

They are not laid up.

Andrew Harris

Hello, I think the words “Laid Up” are not really relevant anymore, we just don’t have the spare numbers, what ships we do have are either in maintenance or “Tied up” or active. The latter is a rather small % of the total though. Just one T45 is currently active, neither of the carriers and only 3 T23’s, either way it’s a shocking state of affairs.

Sean

You might want to redefine what “laid up”’means, but the navy doesn’t. There is a huge difference between ‘laid up’ and ‘under repair’. That you want to redefine established terminology just highlights you know how weak your argument is.

Paul42

They are non-active, perhaps that sounds better. QE is undergoing serious repairs, whilst POW is tied up with no airgroup, escorts or supply vessels to enable her to deploy

Sean

Carriers when in harbour never have their airwings on board. Anyone with a basic knowledge of carrier operations knows that…

The FACT that a QE-Class CSG assembled in 2020, then later deployed in 2021, and again in 2023 and 2024 proves that you’re not telling the truth about escorts and supply vessels.

Duker

So is the USS Ford. Its been at its home port since late Jan, after returning from the eastern med.
The USN is the only force that has enough carriers that can deploy 3or 4 or so at a time. And yes some are on shorter major exercises- like Vinson is at Pearl Harbour but at sea for a week or two for RIMPAC

Sean

The USA with 10 aircraft carriers and a similar number of assault ships and it has trouble maintaining a lone carrier in the Red Sea.
But you think the U.K. with only 2 should be able to…

Order of the Ditch

“ But you think the U.K. with only 2 should be able to…”
After spending billions on the carriers, Tide class tankers, T45s, things like Crowsnest and the 30 odd F35s we currently have, yes I do damn well expect the UK to be able to send one carrier on a deployment of three-four months so that our main ally doesn’t have to divert one of their carriers from the highly important Pacific theatre.

Supportive Bloke

To do what exactly?

If you want overwatch then aircraft from Cyprus would be more useful?

Will

With you entirely, @Order of the Ditch. Well said. If the current business in the Red Sea is not tailor made for a UK carrier strike group deployment, then what is?

Jonno

I thought diesel/GT powered ships and also SSN’s would have meant greater operability of the RN. Must be all about the welfare state and spending half what is needed for Defence. If only a UK statesman was to be found. Correction statesperson or chair.

English Tom

Carriers are obsolete. The RN should have invested in arsenal ships, highly automated, semi submersible and carrying many hundreds of missiles.

Carriers will get smashed in the next big war. What a joke. Arsenal ships and submarines, not carriers, are the future of naval warfare.

Bazza

Can I borrow your crystal ball? I’ve got a few bets to make.

Hakens

The Royal Navy has struggled with funding issues, maintenance problems, and insufficient support ships. Critics argue that Britain, now a middle power, should focus on more practical maritime capabilities like submarines and amphibious warships to address regional threats, particularly from Russia.

The investment in carriers is seen as a vanity project that diverts resources from more essential defense needs.

The only problem is that Great Britain doesn’t have the budget to sustain these aircraft carriers.

What’s more, these ships were built during a time in which many veterans of the modern Royal Navy argue that their storied branch is in its final death agonies. For example, back in 2020 it was reported that the British government spent $8 billion building the warships. But it lacked sufficient funds to stand up the aircraft needed for the aircraft carriers. 

The Royal Navy had trouble scrounging to afford escorts and support ships that would be required to support and protect their new aircraft carriers. What’s more, the British government cannot afford to enhance their new aircraft carriers to be able to conduct amphibious landing operations.

That the carriers could be upgraded to wage amphibious warfare was one of the key justifications Royal Navy planners made for cutting their one amphibious assault craft, the HMS Ocean, in order to help fund the construction of these aircraft carriers.
 
And while the British military has made up for its early shortfalls that were being reported back in 2020, there are now new problems afflicting its haphazard—and hollow—carrier force. 

Duker

French , Italians, Spanish and now Turks have carriers too
Whats your analysis of their ‘hollow carriers forces’?

Hakens

Two wrongs don’t make one right.
What other carriers do and don’t is irrelevant. You are shifting the goal pole. Why not compare with the North Korean Navy to make RN look better?

Margaret Thatcher was presiding over a post-imperial Britain in transition from her position atop the international system to a new place, a lesser location, somewhere in the middle.

Back in the 1980s, when Thatcher reigned, Britain could still go through the motions of being relevant. 
But it was purely superficial. 

Since 1945, and certainly following the Suez Canal Crisis, Britain’s days as a dominant world power were over.

The best she could do was to nestle alongside another greater power and seek to behave as the equivalent of a remora on the body of a shark. 

No part of building and operating an aircraft carrier is simple. Few nations can pull it off. Just look at Russia’s Admiral Kuznetsov, which has been stuck in repairs for several years, unable to sail.

Or consider the British, once rulers of the ocean, whose aircraft carriers have on more than one occasion had to skip NATO exercises. 

Duker

European nations with long maritime traditions like Britain.
The De Gaulle and USN Ford have various issues in their first 5 years too.
As it will be a 50 yr life for a unique project where a lot of the equipment was of size that hadnt been done before outside US

The F35 has its own never ending problems although the current capability is stable ( block 3) the next level block 4 and its stepping stone TR3 is in serious trouble.
Time to pull the plug on Lockheed for Block 4 . Nothing is learned from the earlier blocks development as it acts like 1990s Windows software , add a feature and 5 new faults emerge, fix that and theres 4 more

Sean

British carriers haven’t skipped any NATO exercises, let alone your untrue claim of “more than one occasion”.

Gunbuster

So carriers get hit but arsenal ships dont….OK….????

Andrew Harris

Hello, I’m with you on that, arsenal ships have long proved their worth over the past 100 years or so, I can’t understand quite why those massive mobile floating airfields with such paltry offensive capability are even relevant nowadays.

Jonno

Agreed our arsenal ships showed what they could do in December 1941. Another ill fated Force Z special operation.

Sean

Arsenal ships are a disaster waiting for happen. Which is why no navy has built any.

The best ‘arsenal ships’ are SSGN’s

Whale Island Zookeeper

It’s the old story of not enough of anything and too much to do.

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Challenger

Lovely looking vessels until Tiger & Blake were mutilated to carry helicopters.

ATH

Might have been good to look at but buy the time they were finished as cruisers they were obsolete. The conversion to carry helicopters was just more wasting of public money.

Whale Island Zookeeper

It wasn’t the best was it? I don’t think Internal arrangements wouldn’t have allowed for a very efficient conversion even if the budget was available. Something akin perhaps to the Principe de Asturias with a single lift and the uptakes shoved well over?

comment image

This is a good view and then one showing the best cutaway I could find…….

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I am also reminded speaking of Spanish ships the Independence class Dedalo might provide an hint of what a decent Tiger class conversion could have looked like……..

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Duker

The RN did have helicopter carrying ships designs in early 1960s- loosely called ‘escort cruisers’ of 10,000 – 12,000 tons, before the full through deck design that led to Invincibles.
But werent ‘cruiser up front helicopter at back’ but with a island to one side with a 4.5 in gun turret of the 1960s

Whale Island Zookeeper

Yes. Awful ships in themselves technically speaking. But they did look the part. What the RN should have done is follow the Italians with their refit of Giuseppe Garibaldi and fitted the Terrier missile system aft.

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Perhaps at some point that would have been replaced with Sea Dart……Not hard to imagine something like a ‘mutant County’ / ‘no need to build Bristol’ with 6in mount, Exocet, Sea Cat, and Sea Dart……….

Challenger

I’ve read that the gun systems were pretty unreliable. I think the clincher though was their very large crews (approx 800) at a time when (some things never change!) the RN was having to look at laying up frigates and other vessels more obviously useful in the Cold War, North Atlantic context.

Whale Island Zookeeper

It wasn’t the best. But I have changed my opinion down the years and further reading suggests it wasn’t as bad as some think. Certainly as good the Mk 8 Mod 0 whose record isn’t that stellar.

Yes steam ships especially big steamships eat manpower. You can easily understand why the RN went GT potty.

But the idea of a 6in pooping off a round every 4 seconds or so, perhaps one every 3 seconds in a twin DP mount sounds pretty damn awesome.

http://www.navweaps.com/Weapons/WNBR_6-50_mkN5_arrangements_pic.jpg

Theoden

The Tigers were actually the best AA ships we had until the introduction of Sea Dart on Bristol. Admittedly with the competition being Sea Slug and Sea Cat it isn’t saying a lot but still …

Duker

never read the US military testing accountability bodys reports -Operational Test and Evaluation-have you?
They are a litany of failures to meet specs, altered specs to fit the weapons bought, timelines stretched etc ( they dont even look into the cost growth)
It was set up late 70s or so , as the military couldnt be trusted to do it independently.
this is last year full report minus classified material
https://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/24400278/2023annual-report.pdf

ATH

At the time the RN was betting the house in Sea Slug.

Whale Island Zookeeper

Awful kit. The one time the RN should have just bought American. I always find it amusing that the Counties get a bad rap from Sea Slug yet they were fantastic ships. Whereas it is the reverse for T45 which is a second class barge but gets off because SeaViper is just awesome.

The Tigers with Terrier would have been an asset to the fleet (with other issues to one side as mentioned by Chally.)

ATH

The early Terrier was probably worse than Sea Slug. It had a very short range and also (in its non nuclear version) was badly hampered by being a beam rider. The later semi active versions were undoubtedly better than any Sea Slug but wouldn’t have been available till later. I suspect the U.K. should have put an imported semi active seaker on the Mk2 Sea Slug to cover the gap till Sea Dart. I don’t think the politics of the time would have supported going all American on a key Naval weapon.

Whale Island Zookeeper

My understanding is that those first gen missiles all had their problems. Terrier was a faster missile with higher ceiling. Never mind the much more compact design. The RN could have then gone on to adopt Standard.

Last edited 19 days ago by Whale Island Zookeeper
ATH

They could have, BUT I don’t think the politics of the late 50’s would have allowed a major naval weapons field to be given over to American imports.

AlexS

The error was making the Sea Slug “operational” and build ships around it when it was not ready.
The huge expenses for that precluded a faster evolution and other systems development.

Whale Island Zookeeper

The magazines were huge. Chile used the volume for accommodation and stores.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7sv9ODO-YU&ab_channel=BritishPath%C3%A9

Duker

Everything developed on a faster time scale back then.
Sea Slug was ready in early 1960s, the attached booster model for a heavy AA missile was British doctrine in that era , the navy , the RAF and the Royal Artillery of the Army

this is how much the Seaslug was ready
During the course of her life as a missile trials ship Girdle Ness fired 209 Seaslug missiles. When the trials ended, she returned to Devonport and was paid off on 5 December 1961.”
HMS Devonshire , first of class Seaslug ships, was commissioned in Nov 1962

7a372-hmsgirdleness-021
Supportive Bloke

With a 1st Gen anything you fired off loads of them in those days. There you were working more on getting the V2 stuff working properly and just about safely enough to launch from a manned platform and not a concrete bunker. It wasn’t a very safe system and crews breathed a sigh of relief when the thing had safely left the rails.

The electronics were rudimentary in the extreme.

Developing a way of firing and controlling a missile when they was no integrated target acquisition and tracking required a lot of work.

With ADAWS things got a bit better but numbers (bearings, ranges etc) were held using bits of telephone exchange as registers. It wasn’t, on the face of it, a silly idea but the update rate wasn’t that erm spectacular as targets had a habit of moving evasively.

Duker

Terrier was a 3,000lb beam riding weapon with a 218lb warhead and a range of 30-40,000 yards. Sea Slug was a 4,000lb beam riding weapon with a 200lb warhead and a range of 30-40,000 yards.

later versions of Terrier changed , but thats how the USN works even now, spend serious money to improve it.

The replacement for Sea Slug was Blue Envoy which like the similar USN Typhoon was cancelled

Supportive Bloke

They were both beam riders.

There was a, cancelled, project to make Sea Slug semi active. A lot of that was to do with the retrospectively obvious design errors in Slug.

The whole thing was slung to one side to develop Sea Wolf and Sea Dart. Which was the right thing to do.

DaveyB

The UK had a Sovereign surface to air missile that was significantly better than Sea Slug. Plus it did use semi-active radar homing. This was Bloodhound. Sadly the Navy and RAF did not combine their thinking and development, but instead went their separate ways with Sea Slug and Bloodhound.

Could a marinised Bloodhound have worked on a County class?

Duker

What about the Army English Electric Thunderbird mobile missiles . For its upgrade to semi active homing it shared similar components with the RAF static Bristol Bloodhound. No doubt the RN Armstrong Whitworth Seaslug could have been updated with the same semi active components. There was supposed to be a Bristol development of the Seaslug with ramjet propulsion but that became the Bristol Sea Dart instead

300px-English_Electric_Thunderbird_II_–_IWM_Duxford_512906846191
Supportive Bloke

It was, I believe, looked at in some detail. That is using the Bloodhound semi active on Slug.

It wouldn’t have been easy to have grafted one onto the other.

Missile guidance was, at that time, seen a voodoo.

It will likely have come down to commercials. Bristol not wanting to share their tech with Armstrong……

Be interesting to look in TNA or the Bristol archives and see what survives on that proposal.

Duker

Grafted is how theres things are upgraded. The missiles have a motor section, the ship guidance section, the explosive section and i fitted an active tracking system.
its called Modular.
The technology is moving all the time and the separate coponents come from other suppliers often. Just as the land missiles were upgraded – a modular approach- so could the Sea Slug.
However the volume of the missile was an issue on a destroyer , not so much on land, so the ram jet powered Sea Dart was the right change.
If I was in charge in the mid 60s , the last 2 ( or more) Counties should have been ordered as Sea Dart ships, with the Sea dart forward and the lighter Mk 8 4.5 in gun replacing the 2 heavy turrets. A single or two guidance radars.
Then the rear hull cut down a deck as the deck used for sea slug magazine not required past the funnels and used as full length helicopter landing spots for 2 Wessex. I understand the RN needed this for stability reasons with the existing upper deck weight too high up. The Sea slug launcher was quite low down and would be removed. They would be the trials ships and Bristol not built

Jonno

Counties are always fantastic ships. I especially liked the eight 8″ DP guns. Pity they never had the 8″AA Ammo.

ATH

I think you’re thinking of some other class. The Counties had 2 twin 4.5 turrets forward.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/County-class_destroyer

Random Commentator

Didn’t Garibaldi have 4 tubes for Polaris fitted too?

Whale Island Zookeeper

Yes!!!!

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Duker

US military aid probably paid for the weapons themselves, same for the Terrier systems for Garibaldi.
Paid for a lot of US specific equipment for UK too , plus some costs of british made gear.

William Jardim

To my knowledge the unloading of Tomahawk missiles during its current visit to Gibraltar’s HM Dockyard makes it most unlikely that HMS Triumph will deploy to the Eastern Mediterranean in extremis That said cannot ascertain whether all were unloaded but most likely over a period of three days. The boat is rumoured to depart for the UK tomorrow Saturday 29th June, 2024.

Hugo

They were unloading? Wonder why in Gibraltar than the UK then?

ATH

Quicker to ship to the US for overhaul via Rota than from the U.K.?

Last edited 19 days ago by ATH
William Jardim

Missiles have a shelf life and to my knowledge are rarely overhauled. If not used in anger they are disposed off during live firing practices. Presumably some are taken apart. Not an expert so I do stand to be corrected.

Duker

Not so. They are overhauled
https://www.naval-technology.com/news/raytheon-secures-287m-contract-to-prolong-tomahawk-lifespan/

Its like a bus , so many hours on the road and then into deep overhaul before back on the road

Gunbuster

They have a shelf life for the components and explosives. You change out the lifex /obsolete components ( Seals etc) during allocated periods in the armament depot.

Explosives you take to a lab and check that the chemical matrix is stable. Overtime the explosives lose the desensitiser and they become more sensitive to shock. This is a linear progression and by examination you can project it into the future and work out when it’s no longer safe to keep the explosives in the missile.
Either expend it or change out the warhead/motor.

Arthur

You are quite right that missiles also have a shelf life like many things and whether they are overhauled is a question of economics.
Sometimes it is cheaper to buy new ones than to overhaul old ones.
And also how often overhaul is required to keep them in operation, nothing lasts forever.

William Jardim

Simple. Pre-positioning of missiles within reasonable sailing time ????️ distances from potential war zones should warships need to re-load their magazines. US Navy exercise this practice for years both equipment and kinetic ammo/ missiles.

Hugo

OK, was asking a question, no need for the question marks.

Irate Taxpayer (Peter)

All

Overall, the situation panning out in the Middle East was entirely foreseeable.

Royal Navy aircraft carrier will not be deployed to the Mediterranean but other options are open | Navy Lookout

On Saturday the 14th October 2023, so just six days after the initial Hamas attack (and thus well before Israel retaliated), I posted on Navy Lookout:

Please note the PREDICTIONS made last October (s eight monthsago

(All are now quoted verbatium)

  • “I must now add that I have absolutely no idea about many Arab civilians are already dead. However the number of civvies being killed will soon be rising; very quickly.
  • If I had a nasty and suspicious mind – which of course I don’t have – I would say that “somebody knew all along” that a huge loss of Arab life would happen when Israel retaliated (Which it would inevitably would do. It does this quite-frequently, like every time it is attacked!)
  • Accordingly, the big losses of Arab civilian lives will soon be, geo-politically, very very significant (see below)”.

then

  • Therefore the one to now watch – very carefully – is the country that has said nothing about this attack all week: Iran.
  • Their silence reveals a lot…..

My last two lines, written a full eight months ago, were:

  • All in all, some prompt and effective US/UK action, especially in the right place, might now stop this war spreading.However if no action is taken, for the reasons just given above, this war will “probably” spread like wildfire throughout the whole of the very-volatile Middle East.

————————-

TODAY

Here, on Navy Lookout a few months back, I joked that all World Wars start in August…

…..I am no longer joking.

We now need to stop getting involved in “proxy wars” in the Red Sea – because that is where Iran wants us to focus…

Instead we must start doing this “naval detterance” business properly…..

Accordingly – and once again as I first noted a full eight months ago – the “right place” for US/UK carrier strike group to be positioned is right next to the Straits of Hormuz = thus directly threatening Iran’s own backyard

We now need to be threatening to attack Iran’s vital political and economic interests

…..because if further Iranian attacks are not now properly deterred = we will be on the very slippery slope down into WW3.

Does anybody want bet than Israel soon nukes Iran? (and maybe visa-versa?) (note1)

regards Peter (Irate Taxpayer)

Note 1.

Given the accuracy of all of my previous predictions, I am offering betting odds on “Evens”

Note 2.

And, instead, the UK, France and USA are all now focused on their general elections!

Whale Island Zookeeper

There are that many balls in the air I can’t decide.

AlexS

Precisely, the key is Iran Islamic regime. But the US Democratic party have been very friendly to them.

Sean

TLDR

Sean

Accuracy of previous prediction?!?
That the sun would rise tomorrow?

Paul42

If Triumph is ‘unloading Tomahawks’, presumably she will not be playing any kind of offensive role in the Red Sea, or anywhere else for that matter?

Random Commentator

Tomahawks are in short supply and are very expensive – probably makes more sense for the RAF to step up if there’s no carrier available.

Paul

The chickens are now well and truly coming home to roost.

John Hopper

It should be no surprise to anyone of the RN’s inability to deploy the right number of assets where and when they are needed. We can blame the Politicos as much as we like but we have not been helped by the inability of successive First Sea Lords to argue and assert the RN’s case more ably and assertively.

Hugo

I mean you can argue for it, then get fired.

ATH

True. In the end you have to go with what your elected boss decides or quit and be ignored.

Duker

Its the Treasury long servers who are switched from non military roles to Defence who impose the Thatcherite discipline
Not the elected Defence secretary/Ministers at all.

The Navy Board doesnt include any politicians and 6 , the majority are civil servants now , not like the good old days when there was only 1 civvie
First Sea Lord
Fleet Commander & Deputy Chief of Naval Staff
Chief of Naval Personnel & Training and Second Sea Lord
Chief of Materiel
Commandant General Royal Marines
Controller of the Navy
Assistant Chief of Naval Staff (Policy)
2nd Permanent Secretary – the only member of the Civil Service
Non-Executive Director (Policy)

The Board of the In and Out Club has more military members !

RichardIC

“Labour’s supporter base is likely to protest loudly against any action that could be interpreted as “pro-Israel”, whatever the true wider UK interest.”

The Labour Party has been extremely supportive of Israel.

ATH

But at the cost of huge internal unrest. I suspect if Israel and Hesbala end up at war a new government would want to do as little as possible beyond defending the Cyprus bases and evacuating nationals.

AlexS

The Labour Party has been extremely supportive of Israel.

Extremely?!

Theoden

The Houthis get there weapons from the same place Hamas does. Iran. The only difference is Saudi isn’t playing the same game as Egypt. So they’re getting them directly from Iran by sea. How ? Like Gaza Yemen is the recipient of huge amounts of ‘aid’. Like Gaza that’s how they get their weapons. With their ‘aid’ But surely the aid agencies both UN and otherwise would never allow that ? See Gaza. So unless we’re ready to go after the aid agencies and UN we will not be able to stop the Houthis supply of weapons. So we have two choices either walk away or go after the organ grinder not their monkeys. Personally i’d walk away. But either would be better than where we find ourselves right now.

Last edited 19 days ago by Theoden
AlexS

Agreed.

Jon

UNRWA is part of the problem. Created in 1949 as a temporary measure to help settle up to 700,000 displaced civilians, it now caters to the 5.9 million refugees of that same 1948/49 war. It has achieved this remarkable feat of resettlement over 75 years by defining refugee to be a hereditary title, or rather a hereditary entitlement, passed down through the father’s line. If your father was a refugee, you are a refugee, irrespective of your seeking refuge. The more refugees there are, the more money UNRWA gets to distribute and the more patronage it wields. It’s trying to get the UN to agree that Palestinians displaced in 1967 should also be entitled to the name refugee, along with all patrilineal children, biological and adopted, but luckily the UN isn’t buying that.

They should be told no more 1948 refugees and no more camps. 75 years is long enough. There are real refugees that need help now.

Duker

UNRWA is for Palestinian refugees only. UNHCR is for all the others

When Israel returns to its 1967 borders as the UN requires it – but US prevents any action- maybe the refugee issue could also have a solution.

Jon

No actions by Israel or anyone else can ever have an effect on refugee status as it’s currently defined by UNWRA.

Redefine “refugee” to mean someone displaced by an ongoing war or by a war within the last 5 years (and their dependent offspring) and immediately 5 million Palestinian “refugees” will no longer be refugees. Then rebuild for and resettle the actual refugees from Syria and Gaza. Better yet, abolish UNWRA and let UNHCR do it. There are 6.8 million people internally displaced in Syria and a further 6 million displaced outside of Syria to surrounding countries. Over the last 13 years, 800,000 people have died due to the Syrian war.

AlexS

Portugal would have probably 1.5M refugees by UNRWA.

AlexS

There is no solution except WW2 type war, Palestinians want to destroy Israel.

Theoden

UNRWA Hamas potato pohtato.

Ross

Hi, I know it is simple but an end to the Genocide in Palestine will lead to an end to the justified military operations of Yemen and Lebanon and peace is not enough there must be liberation.As a fisherman on Yemens Red Sea shore said I can’t believe they are attacking me for trying to stop a genocide.

Theoden

genocide. noun. geno·​cide ˈje-nə-ˌsīd. : acts committed with intent to partially or wholly destroy a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group. also : the crime of committing such an act.
Seriously ?
Read the Hamas covenant.

Duker

Colonisers dont get counted as a national group

Sean

Not surprised that you’re anti-semitic too.

Duker

3.5 million migrated to there in last 70 yrs

Duker

They are very welcome to come to live in my part of the country

Michael Fowler

Can you explain why a mosque was build on top of a Jewish temple 1600 years after. Think clue is in the name.. Jerusalem

Duker

Why was a Catholic cathedral built inside an existing mosque in Cordoba in Spain. And you are asking about a ruin which probably had many different buildings before the shrine to pilgrims was built in 685 AD . It’s a site that’s a core part of the Muslim faith.
Jewish temples are everywhere , I used to live next door to one, it was a converted former monastery where we lived, still had its own chapel too. Is that sacred for all time too

Sean

Because after the Reconquest, the Spanish wanted to highlight that the Moors and their religion, Islam, Ahmad been conquered and expelled from Spain.

There are no Jewish temples “everywhere”. Jews have synagogues, their only temple was in Jerusalem. That you don’t know basic facts like that illustrates your opinions are uniformed and based on prejudice rather than facts.

ChrisLondon

You are exceptinally genocidal even by left wing standards. The Nazis rise again but this time it is ‘multiculturalism’ that provides the cover.

Duker

What is multiculturalism and why is it so important to you

ChrisLondon

I would say the Labour Party’s support base ranges from moderate left social liberals who really care about issues like Womens rights and Lesbian and Gay rights, through to hard left Neanderthals who’s attitude to such things is ‘yes of course but the class war is central etc.’

They nowadays see their best route to power as being an alliance with Black and Muslim groups often totally opposed to their claimed human rights commitments. This is both within the UK and internationally where the Left have their hand out for Arab money.

Multiculturism was invented to provide a superficially progressive front for flushing away all their commitments to such things and democracy and secular rationalism. It has helped them create a situation where up and down the country they spend tens to hundreds of millions a year funding what are by any normal standards extreme right wing groups,

One admittedly extreme example of this is Hackney in the 90s and their support for Nation of Islam. This is the group Malcom X was murdered for leaving. In 1994 Hackney Council gave them a disused Council building to use as a national base on a token rent for five years. This was despite the group being notorious for their racism, misogyny and homophobia.

In 1997 they reviewed this decision and decided not to renew the lease as they felt it cold be tied in to a 300% increase in reports of homophobic violence (what a surprise!). NOI are also very opposed to racial mixing if it is a black woman and a non-back man (If it is a black man and a non-black woman that is OK as you are enlarging the black race).

I know this as I lived in Hackney from 1985 to 2000 and followed local politics. For the last three and a half years I was dating a black woman but we fled the area in July 2000 after the second time she was sexual assaulted for dating a white man.

I think this can be linked to the Lefts support for Fascist evil in the Black and Musim communities whenever they think they can work with them.

I also think it can be tied into the blatant double standards being practiced by all those attending the pro-genocide marches we see every Saturday in London. Or the vile racist propaganda lies you promote here.

ChrisLondon

Apologies for the poor editing; All done quickly on my phone.

Jon

35,000 dead in Gaza (including Hamas fighters) triggered by a coordinated attack by Hamas on Israeli civilians: tens of thousands of indescriminate rocket attacks on Israeli towns, murder, rape and kidnapping broadcast live to provoke the maximum reaction; 350,000 dead in Yemen triggered by mass demonstrations over fuel subsidy reductions not answered to Houthi satisfaction; 800,000 dead in Syria triggered by children spraying anti-government graffiti.

There has been no genocide in Gaza. An end to the war in Gaza will stop neither the Houthis nor Hisb’allah. It will eventually tail off when Iran decides it should. If the Hamas leadership were all that worried about the deaths in Gaza they could have returned the hostages and agreed to step down. However, they want deaths in Gaza so that people like you will talk about a genocide like you even knew what it meant.

AlexS

Hi, I know it is simple but an end to the Genocide in Palestine

Typical Marxist.

The only genocide in Palestine is of Jews. There are none living with Palestinians. But there are hundreds thousands of Palestinians living with Jews.

Explain why?

Leah

Labour will attack Israel and support Hamas.

RichardIC

Total nonsense. Labour has supported the right of Israel to defend itself.

AlexS

Maybe a tiny part of Labour supports Israel. most of them want to exterminate Jews.

But it is to be expected from Marxists. It was Marx that wrote “The Jewish Problem” and advocated the genocide of Jews that retained their culture instead of Socialism.

Duker

Clearly you dont bother to find what he did say , its impenetrable and verbose but you are plain wrong
https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1844/jewish-question/

Peter Gardner

How on earth did the Tories gain a reputation for soundness on defence. Tory cuts prompted the Argentine invasion of the Falklands. David Lord Cameron of Remain and Palestine, when PM, cancelled warship building in England to appease the Scottish Nationalists in the lead up to his ill-considered referendum on Scotland’s independence. True, Ben Wallace was sound on Ukraine but that seems to be an exception.

Random Commentator

Jeremy Corbyn.

Sean

Do tell where in England he cancelled warship building?…

Whale Island Zookeeper

Yes I remember when Cameron’s government closed down the Portsmouth facility in 2015. Not good was it?

Sean

No ship building in Portsmouth since the 60’s.

Random Commentator

No, but we did build a WW1 Torpedo Boat replica last year!

Sean

Well done! Perhaps you could start churning them out for Ukranian use? I believe there’s still some parts of the Black Sea Fleet that are still afloat.

Peter S

The consequences of betting the farm on the QEs and their F35 fleet must now be apparent even to their most ardent advocates. To fund and man them, everything else has been reduced, SSNs, destroyers, frigates. Yet despite the main reason for acquiring these carriers being the wish to conduct interventionist, expeditionary warfare, they have to date contributed nothing. Instead of a carrier group operating in the Red Sea to tackle the Houthi threat, we rely on long range refuelled strikes by Typhoons out of Cyprus.
Despite this, RN leadership wants to devote even more resources to the carriers: more F35s, a successor to Crowsnest, possibly requiring an EMAL system and FSS ships.
Meanwhile, as the article shows, our ability to deploy surface or submarine assets will continue to shrink until the end of the decade. If we had not wasted so much on the carriers, we could have afforded and built more surface warships and submarines, armed them all with precision longe range missiles and been able to carry out the task that, it seems, only the RAF has the capability to undertake.

.

Whale Island Zookeeper

I did find it odd that the Astute’s were designed sans VLS; especially given their considerable size.

And I did find it odd too that T45 wasn’t built with more VLS capacity for TLAM.

Hugo

Are we now blaming that on the carriers too. The Astutes wouldve had to be larger to fit vls, just look at a cross section, theyre still considerably shorter than a los angeles class.
But by having tomohawk on the astutes and previous subs it became harder for the navy to justify land attack ability on their escort vessels.

Whale Island Zookeeper

Could you point out where I mentioned the carriers in that post please?

Just cut and paste into a reply to this comment so I can help you out.

As for your assertion about having TLAM in submarines impacting TLAM being carried you are just talking rubbish. And I would advise you go have a good read up on submarine design too. Plus as I said I were surprised they weren’t designed to have VPM nothing about the design that was built. Never mind issues about keeping RN TLAM stocks in check with the USN.

You got shirty above over a few ????????. Yet you seem to think you can just rant off yourself.

Hugo

I don’t see how it wouldn’t be a treasury consideration. Mk41 and additional missile stocks is a rather large cost and if they already had the capability onboard the SSNs I can absolutely believe they’d have a hard time justifying the addition to the surface fleet.

And the reason I assumed your objection to the carriers is the insinuation that there is some other reason for the lack of VLS on Astute or lack of Mk41 on the Destroyers.
What is there to read up on sub design when it’s fairly obvious when comparing the dimensions of the LA class which was the first Western sub to get any VLS iirc compared to the Astute and seeing that there is a distinct lack of available space.

Whale Island Zookeeper

As I asked you point out where I mentioned the carriers. Go on point it out. Do that first……..

As I said I am not talking about Astute as we know I am saying I was surprised it was designed without VPM for a variety of reasons.

You need perhaps to look at something to scale what you trying and failing to discuss.

This is Swedish A26 (Oceanic Extended Range) AIP SSK. 63m in length and with a beam of 6.4m. Astute is 97m in length, so about half as long again and with a beam of 11.3m so 5m great getting. Look how many VPM / VLS this much smaller boat carries….

http://www.hisutton.com/images/Swe_A26_poster.jpg

You don’t know enough to argue with me. You seem to lack comprehension skills too. And you really must get to stores to get yourself a sense of humour issued……….

Hugo

So lose all self determination and independent deployability, essentially become the Royal escort force. How exactly are you pinning all the blame for our woes on the carrier program? Especially when the most important Euro navies all maintain or seek to improve theirs.

Last edited 18 days ago by Hugo
Whale Island Zookeeper

The RN doesn’t have independent deployability. The RN is totally dependent of the USN to do anything of any scale. Just as the Germans are, and the Dutch, and even the French.

If the UK wanted to be able to deploy carriers we would have to increase the tanker fleet about 3 times plus more solid stores ships. Conventional carriers eat fuel; there be reasons why the US have CVN because it cuts down significantly the need for tankers to support the carrier. Escorts up to about 40 ish plus; properly armed never mind more pingers to fly off them. A decent ASaC / AEW that addresses the considerable gap between Crowsnest and something like E2. A national independent targeting capability. A cargo onboard delivery capability; more RAF transports perhaps too? About 3 times the number of fighters we have (at least). Double the number of SSN’s with probably forward SSK’s at choke points like Gib. Double the number of FJ pilots the UK has at least plus more helicopter pilots than we have too. Triple the number of MPA for choke points and to follow the carrier. More weapons integrated for Bravo. You would be looking at 80,000 plus man navy. Oh! And I nearly forgot another carrier preferably two. If we had all that then we could keep say a carrier in the Med on a true operational tempo or somewhere East of Suez.

Only the French have a proper carrier. And by that I mean a carrier not the capability to have a constantly deployed carrier. The Italians will have 2 medium sized aviation decks and the Spanish one. The French Mistrals are too slow really. And the Germans have nothing. Hardly a significant vote for large scale maritime aviation is it?

Andrew Harris

You just took me back to the early 70’s with those sort of figures, It’s amazing just how we declined so badly since those years.

Whale Island Zookeeper

In my life time the RN has gone from having something nearly everywhere to having nearly nothing nowhere.

I remember when ships were relieved on station. Then it went to ships returning and their relief then going out. Then RFA’s started to appear on patrol……. If we can’t rotate a frigate through a station how the heck can we keep a carrier forward deployed?

The RN has gone from being an operational force to a USN auxiliary.

Um. The other issue as I pointed out above is that QE’s are conventional carriers. The are very good reasons why the USN uses nuclear propulsion. A 100,000 tonne conventional carrier would just drink bunkers dry during ops. It would be constantly RAS’ing there would have to be a chain of tankers across the sea. A chain that would have to be kept safe. VSTOL sort of alleviates that problem but not that much. But we would need more carriers. And the further out we went the more we would need.

The biggest hole is our lack of recce satellites. We either get info from allies or we buy it in from a company part owned by Airbus which is part owned bu the French government. Even Turkey has recce satellites. It’s al very well owning longe rang missiles but if you are relying on others for targeting data it ain’t optimum. Like owning a sniper rifle and asking to borrow a telescopic sight.

Some here went they go on about our carriers being essential just haven’t thought it through. Do you know what the West is short of? Escorts and submarines. If the balloon went up the QE’s would probably end up full of USMC Bravo’s and not doing strike.

Sean

You obviously missed the news a couple of years ago about the ASTARI programme. Try and keep up.

Whale Island Zookeeper

As always the talking point passed you by. There is a difference between a national capability owned by the state and buying that capability in from outside even if you wholly or partially funded. There are differences between how the UK does these things and how say France does it or Turkey does it or the US does it.

That’s a very long post for you. I would give your hands a rest now. Or did a a grown up type it for you?

Skynet BTW is comms not recce.

Sean

I see you’re getting confused again, Skynet is comms, ISTARI is recon.
Here’s the link, perhaps you might want to educate yourself before posting more nonsense.
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/uk-cutting-edge-space-defence-backed-by-14-billion

Whale Island Zookeeper

I know. But Skynet improvements are mentioned too in most articles on ASATARI.

You know in a recent thread you had a go 6 other regulars with your snide childish digs. Yet you never ever write more than a line here. You never start a conversation off.

It wouldn’t be so bad if you had actual any knowledge in depth on the topic. You browse a few internet articles nothing more.

What a sad little twerp you are. Getting kicks from being nasty on the internet.

Sean

So because something is mentioned in the same article you assume it’s the same? Sorry, no body is that stupid.

I’ve started plenty of conversation off, such as on the June 24th article on mine-hunting warships. Often asking questions that I hope knowledgeable people, like Gunbuster will answer. Unlike you I, I have a life outside of this website.
Whereas you feel the need to post NUMEROUS random and unrelated comments against EVERY article that is published here. Most of it is based on 1950’s thinking, often with pointless photos of obsolete ships, and extrapolations from these which would have been both strategically and tactically obsolete 40 years ago.

Duker

It’s amazing just how we declined so badly since those years.”

The simple answer is defence was around 5% of GDP in those days of the Cold War. The political class has decided its just over 2% now
Back then the NHS was around 6% of GDP its now 11% .
Choices have been made

Andrew Harris

Hello, I do sort of understand the history of economics and % of spending thanks. It was more a concern as to the rapidity of the decline.

Hugo

Were not talking about taking on first class navies by ourselves. We’re talking situations like the Falklands or deploying across the world to show our interest and commitment.
Your suggestion may be accurate to if we wanted real independence but it’s obviously unrealistic at this point.
But sending a frigate or 2 off to say Australia hardly shows the flag well.
And being brutally honest the UK doesn’t want to be without a carrier because then it would not be considered in the big leagues of navies, and the politicians wouldn’t be able to wave it around and show how powerful they are.

Whale Island Zookeeper

You said,

“lose all self determination and independent deployability,”

……..not I.

Most of the world’s navies are frigate navies. We have too many gaps now to do a Falklands Islands like mission.

Hugo replying to a reply to one of his posts……..

comment image

Hugo

Most the world’s navies are now Frigates navies yes, that’s not a good thing, and we certainly don’t want to be one of those.

Also I don’t see how I moved the goalposts. I never specified to what degree of independence with our navy I was referring to, but either way without carriers we have next to none.
Good luck retaking the Falklands with no carrier.

Last edited 18 days ago by Hugo
Sean

You can’t keep any ship, let alone a carrier “constantly deployed”. Ships need regular maintenance.

BTW you still need tankers to supply all the escort ships for a nuclear carrier. The reason for building nuclear powered carriers is theoretical top speed to avoid torpedo attacks.

The rest is your usual fantasy fleet stuff.

Whale Island Zookeeper

You are confusing maintaining a ship on station, that is having a ship in a particular region (the STATION) to perform a particular task and maintaining a particular ship. In the past the RN would send another ship to that station to relieve the on STATION ship so maintaining a constant deployment. The USN has to have 3/4 carriers battle groups to have one constantly deployed. The UK with only 2 carriers cannot keep a carrier CONSTANTLY on station.

Yes of course you need tankers for the escorts. You even need tankers for aviation fuel too; I am surprised you didn’t point that out Captain Obvious. But a conventionally powered CTOL would just drink fuel. The reason why the USN oiler capability is so modest for such a large and complex navy is the choice to build nuclear carriers.

You really are a snide little man. I don’t know what troubles me. The idea that you think you are better than everybody here and are truly helping the site. Or you are just getting off on annoying others. I pity those IRL who come into contact with you you unpleasant little twep.

Sean

No you’re the befuddled one who talked about having a carrier “constantly deployed”. If you said “forward based”, such as the T23 that since 2018 has been forward based in the Gulf then this would have been in theory possible.
(Though in practice not. For example the QE Class comply with Lloyds certification, requiring periodic inspections in dry-dock. The T23s don’t have Lloyds certification.)

That you don’t know the difference between “constantly deployed” and “forward based” demonstrates the shallowness of your knowledge on current naval matters.

That you then, as per usual, resort to childish name calling illustrates your immaturity and pettiness.

Peter S

Because the overall cost of the carrier plus F35 programme rose so much above initial estimates, that other programmes were cut or delayed to reduce the budget deficit. T45 were cut from 12 to 8 to 6. T23 replacement was delayed far too long and 3 out of 16 were sold off.
As for Euro navies, France gave up the plan for a second carrier as unaffordable and Italy chose a less ambitious route to providing seaborne fixed wing capability. Cavour and Trieste cost a third of the cost of the QEs, despite both having amphibious capability and a full suite of defensive armament.

Peter S

What exactly is triggering the appearance of Russian in my post? Again?

Duker

UK Cyber Command
“The National Cyber Force (NCF) is a partnership between defence and intelligence.
It is responsible for operating in and through cyberspace to counter threats, disrupting and contesting those who would do harm to the UK and its allies, to keep the country safe and to protect and promote the UK’s interests at home and abroad. 

Hugo

The QEs cost was inflated by politicians delaying the construction to keep the yards open. Obviously there were other cost growths well as the F35s, but I don’t see how we’d be better off without them.
Would also point out Cavour and Trieste were built more than a decade apart as entirely seperate programs. Yes they were more efficient, their shipbuilding industry hadn’t been starved to death. But they certainly don’t match the Qnlz class in every regard.
Also if were being completely accurate, Trieste Slyver cells are ffbnw currently. Though her 76s are certainly better than Phalanx.

Peter S

Not saying we shouldn’t have carrier fixed wing capability. But something less ambitious and costly would not have had the adverse effect on other procurement that has left us so lacking in numbers. The biggest contributor to the latest apparent black hole is now the nuclear programme. The carriers are a sunk cost unless expensive alterations to accommodate an EMAL system are approved.

Hugo

First you suggest we should’ve built something cheaper, then that they’re only worth something with Emals, which a smaller design would not even have the option to fit.
Perhaps in some regards, with hindsight mind you, we should’ve gone for a more Conservative platform. But the carriers were literally decades in the making and they couldn’t have predicted when they started the huge decline in spending that would result in insufficient aircraft and escorts.
Even then, we have them now and should make best use of them, chasing Emals at this point in their life is pointless though with so many other priorities

Peter S

You misunderstand my post.I’m arguing that spending even more on the carriers by fitting EMALs to allow UCAV operation shouldn’t happen. They could and should have been smaller and cheaper if built for our needs rather than the US, but we have them now. What might make sense is to revive the abandoned idea of using one in an amphibious role and as reserve carrier( similar to Italian plans for Cavour and Trieste). This would reduce the number of F35s needed and, if helicopter insertion is to replace landing craft, cut the number of MRSS required.
The biggest weakness of the QE design is it’s absolute dependence on escorts. Given how few we have, maybe uparming the carriers would be a sensible use of funds.

Hugo

At some point it may well need to happen but certainly we should focus on what we have.
I dont see them reviving that idea, theyre too large and valuable for them to be deployed without any escort.
They could be uparmed but with all our priority spends i dont think theyll be looking to up arm them so they can deploy alone due to previous reasons.
I can see why it would make best use of only having 1 CSG available im just not sure its on the table anymore.
And we shouldnt aim for less f35s, we need enough for one carrier rn, let alone two.

Theoden

The QE’s were designed to get the most out of the F35’s. There flight deck length enables F35B to be operated at max take off weight. Add in space for upgrades over it’s planned operational life of 50 years. In the case of the carriers UAV’s and Dragonfire or the derivatives of. You could call it FFBNW. Plus extra space for improved crew accommodation. The size of any complex warship has very little impact on the cost of the warship. Let’s be generous and say 25%. In the case of the £6bn cost of the two carriers let’s assume they were halved in displacement to 35k tonnes. That would save £750m and produce a ship marginally bigger than the Italian Cavour which has an airgroup of 12 F35’s and 10 AW101’s. Compared to the QE with an airgroup of 40 total. In other words you would save 12.5% of cost to produce a carrier with 50% of the size and much less capable airgroup. Plus much less capacity for future growth in UAV operation.

Last edited 15 days ago by Theoden
Peter S

Just check the cost of Cavour and Trieste. With amphibious capability in both designs and full suite of sensors and self defence systems, they together cost one third of the QEs. So we have spent £4.5b more to have a larger aircraft capacity that we can’t afford to fill.

Whale Island Zookeeper

T45 is a disappointment. SeaViper is great. But the rest of the package not so much. I still can’t quite understand how they built a noisy IEP ship and built it underpowered too. The lack of decent ASW capability is shameful.

The Italians have probably the best navy in Europe.

Supportive Bloke

T45 isn’t underpowered.

The GTs are massively powerful.

The issue is that the power/cooling/heat recovery regimes was got a bit wrong so that in certain situations there was thermal runaway.

The solution is to use DGs so that the power cooling/curve changes such that the overheat regimes is never entered into.

The added benefit of the bigger DGs is that the T45 can cruise very economically on them.

Whale Island Zookeeper

Go look how much ‘power’ T45 generated and compare it with conventional Horizon. And look which was the bigger ship too.

Peter S

They certainly get a lot for @1.5% of GDP. With so few surface ships, we really shouldn’t have such a high proportion with no ASW capability.

Hugo

Appears that the 2010 SDR decided on only 8 ASW Frigates as a fixed number, at least as best I can guess.
We should obviously improve that but I don’t think governments are treating the situation any differently.

French Navy will be getting 11-13 TAS ships once FDI is introduced, Italy will have possibly upto 14, by some point in the 2030s with 8 Fremms and 6 Full PPAs

Actually possibly 16 with their DDX design.

Last edited 17 days ago by Hugo
Ryan

Complacency, it is the eternal enemy of all military and intelligence forces around the globe regardless of technological sophistication, capability and reputation.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Whale Island Zookeeper

No escort should leave the wall without ASW capability.

Imagine if you would argue here just for sport with the hard of thinking here that if T45 doesn’t need ASW because it is a destroyer then surely T26 doesn’t need AAW missiles because it is a frigate.

It is completely astounding considering our supposed enemies are building submarines in numbers and a world wide economic community that will buy them and provide bases.

Hugo

The Italian Navy don’t have to maintain a nuclear detternt or generally deploy beyond the Mediterranean.

The lack of ASW ability follows what previous RN destroyers have been fitted with. And before you mention torpedoes, really no point if it lacks a towed array, without a towed array in general ships are unlikely to be successful at ASW.

Whale Island Zookeeper

We don’t have to maintain CASD either. You can’t really include CASD in the list of naval capabilities just because it is carried in a submarine. That’s the sort of mistake politicians make. It is a draw on slim resources. Actually it is poorly supported if anything.

The Italians don’t deploy outside the Med? So they are never off the Horn of Africa then? Or in the Gulf of Guinea? The Italians aren’t joining in RimPac 2024? I don’t think you are quite up to speed. I could also counter by saying perhaps the UK deploys far too often from the North Atlantic?

The lack of ASW ability follows what previous RN destroyers have been fitted with.

So T42 didn’t carry the same sonar fit out as T22 then? T42 didn’t do well in ASW competitions often beating frigates? HMS Bristol didn’t carry sonar then because I am sure it did? The Counties didn’t? The previous Darings? I think you are talking rhubarb again aren’t you? RN escorts have a ‘general purpose’ capability

What you are doing is confusing a local or short range second rate capability to protect the ship and contribute to a task group’s collective defence with a first rate area capability that would probably require TAS/VDS. But I would venture further to say that T23’s T2050 / T2151 are important too because a ship cannot have TAS deployed permanently. I would say a first rate ASW ship like T23 relies on (very) quiet propulsion and support systems. I would say a first rate ASW should be able to support and operate too first rate pingers (probably 3 or 4.) I would say a stand off weapon too as well as STWS. But I wouldn’t expect the RN to deploy such a ship with a first rate AAW capability like Sea Viper. But I do expect some AAW systems. some local systems, because AIRCRAFT and the need to defend itself and contribute to collective defence. Just as I expect destroyers in RN parlance to have ASW capability to defend itself and contribute to collective defence. An opfor submarine isn’t going to let T45 slide by just because it doesn’t have ASW. If anything it makes a juicier target. T45 isn’t really an escort because it has to be escorted itself. It is a specialist AAW ship when the RN wanted, needed, a T42 replacement. SeaViper is very important and it is just about worth deploying in the lacklustre T45 platform but it is no T42 replacement.

Hugo

I Include it in naval capabilities because the MOD has to pay the extortionate cost to build them which in turn means less funding for other shipbuilding programs.

I acknowledge the Italians do operate outside the med on occasion but their fleet, e.g. how its structured and fitted out is very much designed around shorter range operations. SSKs cannot keep up with a carrier groups, and their supply ships are much smaller and currently they are only building 3.

Submarine technology has only improved since those previous designs, and said designs would be considered noisy by todays standards, a ship without a towed array is only going to be able to detect subs at a last resort, especially if theyve got past the submarine and frigate screen.

I do think the RN generally has an issue either getting the funding or themselves wanting to employ 2nd rate capability, as cost cuts have been made weve further focused each class into their respective roles. Yes the T45 is noisy but they could update the Bow sonar if they wanted to, and yet it is reportedly inactive with no one to use it because of the insistence on only 8 ASW assets.
Also arguably the T42 was a pretty mediocre AAW platform, so while yes the T45 comes lacking in the ASW department, like i referenced above its focus has been further refined, if not at the cost of everything else to AAW warfare.

Last edited 16 days ago by Hugo
Whale Island Zookeeper

In the littorals the only way to deal with SSK’s is active sonar. You wouldn’t be able to deploy most TAS in those areas.

Back in the day T42 crews regularly WON ASW competitions and did well in ASW overall. That was back in the day when we operated SSKs for working up. A T42 is noisy. But no more noisy than a T21 or T22 with which it shared the exact same propulsion system. B2 and B3 T22 weren’t exactly quite either. The thing is T23 is ultra-ultra quiet.

Yes T45 could have a new sonar. But it is still has to be asked how they managed to build a noisy IEP ship. Especially when such designs should be inherently quite. AND ESPECIALLY WHEN ONE OF THE DRIVERS FOR THE DESIGN OF T45 WAS THAT IT SHOULD BE QUIETER THAN T42.

The Italian navy is designed to operate in the Med in war. They have enough SSK’s to defend their whole coast. Yes they can’t keep up with a carrier group but they are in the water and working. A few months back we didn’t have one SSN deployed.

We wouldn’t have SSN’s if we didn’t have CASD.

Just stop digging!

Do you need a hand moving your goal posts back down the park?

Go on now. 🙂

Andrew Harris

Some great comments here, such a brilliant group of commentators and the knowledge shared is amazables, I particularly enjoy reading the “whale Island” stuff/Guff, struggle a bit retaining consciousness reading Peter the Irate Tax Payers novels, love seeing the exchanges between Sean/Hugo/Duker, can’t understand where Nigel C has gone but really enjoying the banter.

Whale Island Zookeeper

It’s mostly guff. Definitely mostly guff. 🙂

Andrew Harris

Oh, I don’t know, you do post some great pictures from time to time.

Whale Island Zookeeper

There are so many great pics out there. I don’t know why more of you don’t post pictures too.

James

You do post guff like, but despite that I always read your posts, between the guff is a lot of interesting detail, thank you.

Whale Island Zookeeper

It’s mostly guff. Rhubarb flavoured guff at that. 🙂

David MacDonald

I agree with those who express the view that the Type 45 destroyers, noisy, lacking AS capability and, as built, with inadequate generator capacity, should have been much better. As I recall it, the Integrated Project Team responsible for their design was led by an “amazingly clever” Army Brigadier. That seems to me to capture one of our current national problems. There are too many “good chaps” and “chapesses” (Paula Vennells!) in positions with inadequate subject knowledge and experience. As an aside, this is clearly seen in the total disaster which is our national energy policy. 
 
I do hope that the Royal Navy avoids the temptation to appoint senior officers who have not a solid track record of achievement in the service.

Irate Taxpayer (Peter)

David M

I would have to “slightly disagree” with you about your phrase about good chaps……

“I do hope that the Royal Navy avoids the temptation to appoint senior officers who have not a solid track record of achievement in the service”.

………however you are definitely “on the right track”

The key caveat must surely be that their achievements must be “of the right type”

————

As you quite-rightly say (above) within all of the UK armed forces it is routine standard operating procedure that all mid-ranking officers who are on an “upward career trajectory” soon get given a job “somewhere inside defence procurement”.

This is a standard part of their career development process and they are often appointed for exactly two years.

Just to make it worse, even in this technologically sophisticated era, remarkably few British Officers have any proper professional engineering training and/or skills (note: In my opinion, the RAF is slightly better at recruiting them than the RN: however the Army is noticeably far far worse than the RN).

Furthermore, to make things even worse, the UK civil service has remarkably few scientists, and almost no professional engineers, within its ranks.

Then, to add yet more to this heady mix of incomptence, all of our big defence companies are run by accountants, lawyers, bean-counters and marketing bullsh***ers – all of whom are technically illiterate.

Thus, throughout all of our very complex defence engineering projects, key leadership roles are constantly being filled by bumbling amateurs – who thus quickly appoint other amateurs. They soon leave (i.e. after a couple of years) – to be replaced by the next unqualified amateur……

So the whole cycle of musical chairs starts all over again……….. .

Therefore very basic engineering and project manangement mistakes keep getting repeated: time and time again!!!.

The final step in the process is to “read all about it”, in yet-another National Audt Office report.

—————————————

In very marked contrast, overseas (both in Europe, and especially in the USA and Japan) all of their technically sophisticated and big defence programmes are always run by technically well-qualified and very-competent senior officers.

————————–

The classic example of how effective having a major defence programme being led by a true leader, one who was also highly-techically qualified engineer, was a certain General Norman Schwarzkopf.

Here in the UK, our OET’s (i.e Oxbridge Educated Tossers, often senior journalists) frequently portrayed him as a jar-headed infantryman: hence labelling him “Storming Norman”.

However, the coverage he received over in the USA was very very different………because many in the USA knew him as a senior general who was so technically sophisicated that he had sat next to the astronauts (yes: literally!) when he was completing his master degree, in aerospace engineering, at a top California University back in the early 1970’s.

Thus, it was under Norman’s leadership in the late 1970’s that the US Army quickly designed and developed (and then soon rerequipped with) a quite spectacular range of new equipment. In that remarkably short period the US Army developed the Apache gunship; Patriot air defence missiles; Abrams Tank; Bradley Fighting Vehicle; MLRS (ATCMS) rockets (now modified to be HIMARS); Humvees; lots of various small anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles; and lets not forget their huge (and very effective) fleet of several different types of logistics lorries.

…thus it can be quite-safely said that the highly-qualified professional aerospace engineer “Thoughtful Norman” made a very big difference…..because all of those great bits of kit are all still in service throughout the US Army today, fifty years later!

——————-

What is needed today is RN senior officers with proper professional engineering skills (not just“achievements”) to run our major defence projects.

Quite simply. If they are not technically qualified = they should not be put in charge of a defence programme!

Then these few people must be given further training and professional development in the “black arts” of big league project management. Furthermore they must be kept in their key role for several years.

Only then will we have a few officer(s) who a can lead a “Complex Defence Equipment Project” right through – literally from its concept into full operational service.

Frankly, what the RN needs now is to reincarnate the USN’s Admiral Rickover..

regards Peter (Irate Taxpayer)

Note 1.

Nuclear engineer Rickover “did the business” with the entire USN’s nuclear submarine fleet (SSN and SSBN and X) over four decades – from the late 1940’s until the late 1980’s, …..so right the way throughout the Cold War …which, by anybody’s standards, was one hell of a track record….

Andrew Harris

Christ mate, any chance you might be able to just compress that to a couple of sentences please… most of us on here suffer from ADHD and it’s rather difficult to focus after the first few Chapters.

Irate Taxpayer (Peter)

Andrew

I hereby prescribe Red Bull to = to keep you awake!

Regards Peter (Irate Taxpayer)

PS However, for some of my longer ones: you may need a multi-pack!

Ryan

It will all change tomorrow. Whether the promised 2.5% defense spending by this government will be kept by the next government remains to be seen, let alone the number of T26, T31, and T32 that would be built.

Duker

T26 and T31 are all on order.
T32 never existed except for a fleeting moment when Boris imagined he was the new Fisher

Fat Bloke on Tour

2.5% defence spending is only a slogan until we transform MOD project / build economics.
Any extra money will just go on increasing project overheads and better resourced PowerPoints.

Fat Bloke on Tour

Same problem everywhere — not enough hulls in the water.
USN will need to think again regarding second rate aircraft capable assets.
The new Canal locks should allow the transition to be easier than before.

If our issue is crewing requirements then we need to start looking at a credible global asset with a base crew of 50 to get some credible presence where required.

Palma visit — surely the optimal solution would have been to get the ship back using a reduced / transit crew and fly the rest of them back once they had sobered up.

How many days will they be alongside for?
Did KGV get a run ashore after the Bismarck scrap?
Seems all a bit jolly hockey-sticks to me.
Might be my age.

Irate Taxpayer (Peter)

Ref: The Situation in the Middle East

****** Bloke on Tour

100% agree with you that, given that we have remarkably few RN hulls in the water, that we need to make best use of every single one that is not stuck in drydock…

However, just a friendly reminder that the UK sovereign bases in Cyprus are much closer to this war zone than Palma, which is several days cruising time away.

Therefore it baffles me why this ship was not rearmed “on station” in Cyprus.

Alsson, as you quite rightly say – IF those crews needed to be changed – therefore why those crews were not being exchanged from the UK by RAF aircraft.

Just been looking at the googlebox news ……..that hundreds of Iranian-made missiles have just been launched this morning into northern Israel – by yet another one of those Iranian proxies beginning with the letter “H”.

Thus our specialist AAW platform HMS Diamond was not on-station off the coast of Lebonan when it was most needed……

Instead of worrying about the election results, the senior RN leadership really needs to get a grip on “the basics”….

regards Peter (Irate Taxpayer)

Disclaimer
Please note that this post has been made fully compliant with the very latest Navy Lookout Moderation Policy. ……Accordingly, the “F” word was redacted.

Andrew Harris

You’re honored by admin it seems, virtually everything I took the trouble to type (one finger is a terrible bore) has completely vanished and i haven’t even typed the F word or insulted anyone !

Duker

 hundreds of Iranian-made missiles have just been launched this morning into northern Israel – “
Those are short range rockets really . AD of Israel isnt the UK concern and the IDF has the very capable Iron Dome for that- itself designed for shorter range rockets.
Longer range from yemen actually over the Red sea is a different story for those vessels in the Red Sea
Yemen had a ‘houthi’ or Zaydi sect government from 1919 to 1970. After the British protectorate of Aden and surrounds became independent it became known as North Yemen

Jon

Did KGV get a run ashore after the Bismarck scrap? Probably. Watch the Pathe newsreel After the Bismarck (1941) on YouTube. Everyone piles ashore from Norfolk, Rodney, KGV, etc, to plaudits from the crowds, photos and interviews from the press. It finishes off with a shot of a sailor downing a well earned pint.

Fat Bloke on Tour

Fair point — but why the stop in Palma rather than Portsmouth?
Is it down to optics and family friendly return arrangements?
Let off steam where there are no family to get in the way?

The other issue regarding the number of T45’s.
Fair enough there were only 6 built — but how many are operational now?
Plus there should be 6 crews available to double shift the units we have on open water.

Plus surely the RAF / MOD have some sort of containerised air defence capability waiting to be deployed at a moments notice to a global trouble-spot? Stuff you can stick in the back of a C17 and head off to troubled locations and put on a show?

To me the issue is not money but a desire and ambition to fix problems.
The can-do spirit has evaporated and has been replaced by box tickers and paper shufflers.

Duker

The Treasury people who have the majority on the Navy Board wouldnt allow funding for 6 T45 crews
And Royal Artillery does have a mobile AD capability
comment image

Jon

Containerised air defence — I wish! CAMM in a Navy Pod would be so useful. Nearest I can think of is Sky Sabre, deployable on three+ trucks carriable by a large amphib, but probably not useable at sea. C17? I don’t know. Of course that’s army, not RAF.

Duker

CAMM are in ‘pods’ , its called VL and the same missile as the Army pods.
Containerised ‘something’ isnt well thought through

Whale Island Zookeeper

T26 should have had the ability to fire Aster 30. The Hunters and Rivers will both be able to fire SM-2. It is unrealistic to expect a front line surface combatant to go to sea without an area air defence capability.

Last edited 13 days ago by Whale Island Zookeeper
Irate Taxpayer (Peter)

*** Bloke on Tour

Once again = 100% agree with you

A good few months ago, here on Navy Lookout, I posted that all of the UK defence facilities in Cyprus now really ough now to be properly beefed up.

Cyprus is, after all, just a stone aircraft carrier……

Cyprus occupies a key piece of geography in the “always volatile” Middle East.

That is precisely why the UK retained our sovereign bases in the 1960’s.

  • That means decent air defences (so the full suite of radars, RAF typhoon fighters and Army ground based AAM), ideally all in hardened concrete shelters.
  • The Navy could do with fuel tanks, proper jetties for rapid re-loading of warships and also a roll-on roll-of faciiy for the Point class
  • The base itself needs proper medical (and aeromedical) facilities.
  • Then keeping a proper UK rapid reaction force in Cyprus – bootnecks, planes, helicoptors and plenty of ammo – would give the UK many options.

Overall, Cyprus is now the new front line…..,
.
Regard Peter (Irate Taxpayer)

Jon

HMS Trent is working on HADR in the West Indies with no RFA support this year, amongst terrible winds that have started the hurricane season with a bang. Meanwhile Cardigan Bay is playing host to Americans building and dismantling a relatively useless pier in Gaza, which according to the reports is currently dismantled and might never get built again. Time to tell the Americans it was lovely having you, but there’s disaster relief work the other side of the pond to be done where we can be of real help.

Biden has spent $230m on this project. He can afford to rent his troops a luxury Mediterranean cruise ship for a month while they play the aid-pier hokey cokey. First they put it up. Then they take it down. Up down, up down…..

Last edited 13 days ago by Jon
Fat Bloke on Tour

Has anyone done any work on the offensive possibilities of a 770mm torpedo with some onboard comms and logic?

Or are we waiting for the Yemeni Yahoos to take a brave pill and start cutting steel themselves to prove the concept?

Duker

Drone speedboats …Ukrainians done that already