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Here it comes: Syria

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Here it comes: Syria

Old 14th Apr 2018, 13:52
  #2241 (permalink)  
 
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The aircraft which has been and still is the go to attack jet for well over 35 years is being retired simply on lack of funds grounds. I struggle to understand why we are doing so
One word: manpower. The RAF and Navy are both struggling with their numbers caps, and the stove-piping of single-service budgets under the Levene reforms (and the politics around Army numbers) means that the obvious solution of transferring some of the Army’s unfilled positions to the other services is not possible. The P8 and additional Typhoon squadrons promised in SDSR15 are therefore dependent upon manpower currently tied up in the Tornado Force, and so retirement of Tornado is an essential prerequisite for these important growth plans.

Mothballing Tornado wouldn’t work either as the engineers would still be needed for anti-det maintenance.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 14:02
  #2242 (permalink)  
 
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Why not set it up as a reserve squadron or two? I’m sure there would be enough volunteers/manpower to run it on the cheap? I appreciate keeping the war fighting skills of flight crew would be more difficult, though simulators would help enormously. Seems crazy to scrap all this equipment when it works fine and may be needed a year or so down the line.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 14:11
  #2243 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by dead_pan View Post
Russian defence ministry now claiming Syria AD downed 150 of the 120 missiles launched against the country...
Clearly at least 30 missiles hit 30 other missiles leaving 60 missiles to hit their targets. However if 75 missiles . . .
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 14:16
  #2244 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Easy Street View Post
One word: manpower. The RAF and Navy are both struggling with their numbers caps, and the stove-piping of single-service budgets under the Levene reforms (and the politics around Army numbers) means that the obvious solution of transferring some of the Army’s unfilled positions to the other services is not possible. The P8 and additional Typhoon squadrons promised in SDSR15 are therefore dependent upon manpower currently tied up in the Tornado Force, and so retirement of Tornado is an essential prerequisite for these important growth plans.

Mothballing Tornado wouldn’t work either as the engineers would still be needed for anti-det maintenance.
Thank you ES. Confirms my point. What a ridiculous way to run the defence of one of the richest countries. I thought that the majority of the maintenance and support of Tornado was by BAE (Attac) and RR (ROCET) for the engine. Moreover with F35 so late what about the manpower that should have been working on that programme.
As they say - shame to ruin the ship for a hapeth of tar....
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 16:26
  #2245 (permalink)  
 
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Pentagon Post-Strike Briefing - Assets / Results

Assets used, missile types & numbers from 3:10.


2 x B-1B fired 19 x AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles (JASSM).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AGM-158_JASSM

UK contribution 8 x Storm Shadow - Tornado GR4 + Typhoon involved.

French AF contribution 9 x SCALP (Storm Shadow) - Rafale + Mirage involved.

No missiles shot down - some ballistic SAM firings after targets hit.

Previous brief from US SecDef + Chairman JCS with UK & French Air Attaches in attendance.


Last edited by RAFEngO74to09; 14th Apr 2018 at 16:55.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 16:28
  #2246 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Buster15 View Post
Thank you ES. Confirms my point. What a ridiculous way to run the defence of one of the richest countries. I thought that the majority of the maintenance and support of Tornado was by BAE (Attac) and RR (ROCET) for the engine. Moreover with F35 so late what about the manpower that should have been working on that programme.
As they say - shame to ruin the ship for a hapeth of tar....
I agree with you on the GR4 retirement schedule - no reason whatsoever (other than funding) that they couldn't have been run on a few extra years, to provide some much needed contingency whilst F35 ramps up. Unfortunately, the decisions taken are now too far gone for any serious change, by all accounts there are only about 25 airframes still operational

That said I can definitely see one of those ass-saving, last minute decisions coming to run the last ones on for an extra 6-12 months.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 16:43
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Been there seen it and argued it about the Jag before.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:04
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Originally Posted by RAFEngO74to09 View Post
2 x B-1B fired 19 x AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles (JASSM).
A B-1B can carry 10 JASSM? seems a lot, they are large units.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:07
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:14
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Originally Posted by andrewn View Post
... on the GR4 retirement schedule - no reason whatsoever (other than funding) that they couldn't have been run on a few extra years, to provide some much needed contingency whilst F35 ramps up.
There’s no reason (other than funding) that we don’t have the biggest and bestest Air Force in the whole world. In the real world we have to live within politically-sustainable means. The 2010 SDSR set Tornado’s retirement at 2019 without any compensating uplift elsewhere, so a big win in 2015 was the plan for two additional Typhoon squadrons, which *are* the contingency you speak of. But they cannot be delivered while the Tornado remains in service, unless of course all the vested interests in both Houses of Parliament accept a reduction in Army manpower below 80k. Even that wouldn’t help much due to the delay while recruitment and training took place.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to keep Tornado going. But let’s be positive and reflect that (yet again) combat aircraft have proven their political utility; we have moved a long way from the ridiculous land-centric HERRICK-era arguments that would have stripped the fast jet fleets down to UK QRA only. With any luck their airships will be able to use the recent track record to solidify the rest of the F35 buy and future combat aircraft beyond. Bravo Tornado!
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:31
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Originally Posted by Easy Street View Post
There’s no reason (other than funding) that we don’t have the biggest and bestest Air Force in the whole world. In the real world we have to live within politically-sustainable means. The 2010 SDSR set Tornado’s retirement at 2019 without any compensating uplift elsewhere, so a big win in 2015 was the plan for two additional Typhoon squadrons, which *are* the contingency you speak of. But they cannot be delivered while the Tornado remains in service, unless of course all the vested interests in both Houses of Parliament accept a reduction in Army manpower below 80k. Even that wouldn’t help much due to the delay while recruitment and training took place.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to keep Tornado going. But let’s be positive and reflect that (yet again) combat aircraft have proven their political utility; we have moved a long way from the ridiculous land-centric HERRICK-era arguments that would have stripped the fast jet fleets down to UK QRA only. With any luck their airships will be able to use the recent track record to solidify the rest of the F35 buy and future combat aircraft beyond. Bravo Tornado!
Personally I think it's time we got real - and stopped using phrases like "polically sustainable"! Trump and the French are both setting the example, by significantly redressing the balance after years of cuts. We now need to follow suit, scrap the manpower "cap" thing, commit to a fourth FJ MOB, fully fund the flying hours required. This shouldn't even be a debate, it should just be happening.

Take the point on GR4 though, the future is F35 I agree.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:39
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Fine - agreed - now all you have to do is convince the Great British Public to

a) pay more tax
b) cut some of their benefits (pension, bus passes, schooling, health service...
c) get re elected.............
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:39
  #2253 (permalink)  
 
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Nice to see the Tornado being so loved. Makes a change from many previous threads.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 17:43
  #2254 (permalink)  
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Quick blooding in theatre for the B-1Bs, they only deployed to Qatar under 2 weeks ago.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:01
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1) is there any point in keeping Tornado when upgraded Typhoon will carry Stormshadow and Brimstone?

2) How's the serviceability rate on Tornado, how many man-hours of maintenance vs flying hours and is it way past it's designed fatigue life ?

It's my opinion that Stormshadow and Brimstone are the only reason why Tornado wasn't scrapped years ago.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:07
  #2256 (permalink)  
 
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The only point to run it on would be to increase the total numbers of aircraft in the RAF. With the Typhoon there are no new aircraft being ordered, just redistributed from the current fleet?or have I missed an extra order of Typhoon aircraft recently?
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:28
  #2257 (permalink)  
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You are looking at the early jets that would have scrapped or sold retained.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:34
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You will notice that US commanders and President Trump now list France before UK, however painful it might be to swallow for some.

Now some numbers :

UK : 4 Tornados from Akrotiri, 2 Storm Shadow each : total 8
France : 5 Rafale from St Dizier (France) 9 Storm Shadow, 3 launched from a French Frigate ("Aquitaine") : total 12

In both raids, fighters in protection, not involved in the bombings :
- Typhoon to protect Tornadoes (needed)
- Mirage 2000-5 to protect Rafales (not as much needed)
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:35
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Originally Posted by gr4techie View Post
1)
It's my opinion that Stormshadow and Brimstone are the only reason why Tornado wasn't scrapped years ago.
Oh really? So what was the alternative?
You have missed the point. Tornado carries more than the offensive missiles. Just look at how the deaths and injuries from IES's in Afghanistan dropped when GR4 recce operation with RAPTOR took place. It has been stated that over 60% of all allied intelligence was supplied by the RAF. Some from UAV but the majority by Tornado.
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Old 14th Apr 2018, 18:37
  #2260 (permalink)  
 
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Given the relative proximity I am slightly surprised that the GR4s only carried 2 missiles each, rather than the maximum of 4 (presuming the clearances are in place).
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