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UK Strategic Defence Review 2020 - get your bids in now ladies & gents

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UK Strategic Defence Review 2020 - get your bids in now ladies & gents

Old 5th Jul 2020, 16:20
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Originally Posted by rotormonkey
I thought Benson was regarded as a key divert option for mil fixed wing in the south of the country, with its north/south runway? I doubt the retirement of the Puma, early or as planned, would necessarily mean the closure of Benson.
You're making the mistake of bringing common sense into the equation. Remember, that's the last thing to be consulted when making decisions of this magnitude.
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 17:23
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Originally Posted by rotormonkey
I thought Benson was regarded as a key divert option for mil fixed wing in the south of the country, with its north/south runway? I doubt the retirement of the Puma, early or as planned, would necessarily mean the closure of Benson.
What is the cost of running and maintaining an airfield for the sole purpose of MEDA? I think that UK PLC would prefer to make the savings, sell off the land for development and have mil fixed wing use another airfield, even one that is non-mil.
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 17:27
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Originally Posted by Imagegear
I don't remember voting for that obnoxious git Cummins, I have a feeling that his comeuppance is due soon and then he'll be off to his island bolthole when the chips are down.

IG
You don't remember that because no one has EVER voted for the Prime Ministers advisors, nor indeed for any of the other myriad special advisers that exist in Cabinet and Government. Nor in fact did you actually vote for the Prime Minister, or any other member of the Cabinet. You voted for constitutional members of Parliament, and it has ever been thus.
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 17:32
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ORAC,

But the trained strength of the British Army is 82,000. So is it a cut to 55,000, or a cut to 62,000, or has the Times merely got hold of a worst case options paper and assumed that this is what is happening?

And leaving the RAF with a pure Chinook SH force would surely be an unbalanced nonsense? Every time you call for helicopter support all you can ask for is a Chinook?

A navy without minesweepers is surely a rather vulnerable navy?
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 18:01
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Originally Posted by pr00ne
ORAC,


And leaving the RAF with a pure Chinook SH force would surely be an unbalanced nonsense? Every time you call for helicopter support all you can ask for is a Chinook?
Whatever the Americans replace the Blackhawk with would get my vote.

Not that I have a vote!
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Old 5th Jul 2020, 20:44
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Originally Posted by pr00ne
ORAC,

But the trained strength of the British Army is 82,000.
or at least it should be...
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Old 6th Jul 2020, 06:36
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Originally Posted by Willard Whyte
Whatever the Americans replace the Blackhawk with would get my vote.

Not that I have a vote!
It's ok, we've got Wildcat to do the small jobs....

I suspect that whatever FVL replaces Blackhawk will be unaffordable for UK plc.

My money is firmly on an AW badged aircraft at some point (AW189?) to replace Pu, 212, N3, Griffin and anything else Brit army still have locked in a cupboard. Keeps the money in the UK for the most part of Yeovil are thrown the job.
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Old 6th Jul 2020, 13:20
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Originally Posted by pr00ne
You don't remember that because no one has EVER voted for the Prime Ministers advisors, nor indeed for any of the other myriad special advisers that exist in Cabinet and Government. Nor in fact did you actually vote for the Prime Minister, or any other member of the Cabinet. You voted for constitutional members of Parliament, and it has ever been thus.
As I said, I did not vote for any "advisors", and since my personal experience of meeting and dealing with them, I would require all "advisors" to be subject to approval of appointment by the electorate.

As for Prime Ministers, all are first MP's and by virtue of their standing within their respective parties, are selected by other elected MP's, to lead the party.. I have no problem with this system.

Not the same as gizajob Cummins.

IG
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Old 6th Jul 2020, 15:21
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Originally Posted by RAFEngO74to09
The press release launching the new RM uniform gave a clue as to what might lie ahead:

"Royal Marines Commandos are to get a brand new uniform under the most significant transformation and rebranding programme launched since World War 2."

"Under the Future Commando Force programme more Royal Marines will operate from the sea, utilising new and innovative technology as high-readiness troops, forward deployed and ready to react, whether that’s war-fighting, specific combat missions such as commando raids, or providing humanitarian assistance"

So it looks like - perhaps - more emphasis on larger RM teams on QE Class carriers, DDs & RFAs and perhaps a rundown of the "storming the beach" capability using LPD, LCU & LCVP.

https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/news-an...es-new-uniform

IIRC there was someone talking about this relatively recently - quite where is lost to me right now - but in effect saying why didn't a lot more ships (anything that can operate a helicopter) have RM detachments as most of the day action these days requires small teams
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Old 6th Jul 2020, 15:47
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Asturia

Let's hope they have got their littoral act together when storming beaches, since a previous exercise ended up as a navigational debacle.

IG
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Old 7th Jul 2020, 20:01
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Ben Wallace, in the Telegraph today denied plans, reported in the Sunday Times, to cut the Army from 74,000 to 55,000. Meanwhile stories circulate about airbases being closed and Dominic Cummings, once he's got his new glasses or contact lens or whatever, may be turned loose on the Defence review. He's keen to take funds from the conventional forces, such as is left, and spend it on cyber, space and AI. Standby for plenty of yatter about re-balancing concentrating on the new threats etc.

When will the politicians and bean counters understand, cyber, AI and forages into space defence isn't replacing the Cavalryman with the Tank, its dismissing the Tank because we've got an enigma machine.

FB
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Old 7th Jul 2020, 20:04
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https://www.politicshome.com/news/ar...s-sort-you-out

Tory MP Mark Francois tells head of the army to overhaul defence or Dominic Cummings will ‘sort you out’


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Old 8th Jul 2020, 10:45
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Latest from Sir Humphrey at the the Thin Pinstriped Line. As usual replace the * with blog_spot, or do a search on the title.

Personally I don't know quite where all these ancient airfields and excess RAF stations are......

https://thinpinstripedline.******** .com/2020/07/defence-in-round-thoughts-on-integrated.html

Defence in the Round - Thoughts on the Integrated Review
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Old 8th Jul 2020, 15:29
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Originally Posted by ORAC
Latest from Sir Humphrey at the the Thin Pinstriped Line. As usual replace the * with blog_spot, or do a search on the title.

Personally I don't know quite where all these ancient airfields and excess RAF stations are......

https://thinpinstripedline.******** .com/2020/07/defence-in-round-thoughts-on-integrated.html

Defence in the Round - Thoughts on the Integrated Review
Esp when you think in the next few years Scampton, Linton on Ouse, Halton and Henlow are due to close
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Old 8th Jul 2020, 16:03
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The treasury see the number of aircraft steadily falling but airfields are held onto for all sorts of reasons - how valid they are depends on your viewpoint.

maybe they plan on selling off large portions of the site - eg Henlow.............
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Old 8th Jul 2020, 16:32
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Refueling the outrage bus.

In some ways I agree with Sir Humphrey in that I have always thought defence capabilities should be aligned with the nation's needs and interests. However, IMHO successive governments have spent most of the last sixty plus years removing capabilities by pretending threats, needs and even international commitments didn't exist. Sometimes driven by budgetary considerations, other times by ideology. Defence spending has been an easy target. For example, apparently no politicians were prepared to argue that the end of the Cold War meant small conventional wars were far more likely and defence expenditure and new capabilities needed to match the increased risk. Instead of recognising the Cyber threat is additional and requires additional funding, they seek to divert it from already underfunded and required capabilities. What we need is a 21st Century Trenchard to argue for and lead an independent Royal Cyber Force. The threat it addresses will not require the traditional set of competences for good airmen, sailors and soldiers - though they will overlap. Nor, I believe will the hierarchical structures of traditional armed forces be appropriate. The last being something Sir Humphrey also thinks.

Notwithstanding the suggestions around the importance of the Law of Armed Conflict when it applies to cyber warfare, there is perhaps a sense that cyber is seen as a difficult sell because it breaks the existing career models, needing people who are not necessarily natural officers and leaders, and it needs talent that is not necessarily drawn to a career in a structured and disciplined military.
There now follow some daft suggestions to stir the pot.

Does the RAF need both Waddington and Coningsby? Close Coningsby expand Lossiemouth as a single base for Typhoon with detached QRA facilities at Marham. Move P-8 to Waddington. Co-locate Rivet Joint ops with USAF at Fairford. Absolutely no idea myself but would it be possible to move Brize Norton ops to Mildenhall when/if USAF leaves and share facilities with Marham? I would have thought Brize is a better location for more housing and industry e.g closer to better road links.

Concentrate all RAF/RN fixed wing flying training on Valley and Mona close Cranwell and Barkston Heath.

Shut two of Honington, Leeming and Wittering and consolidate on the remaining one.

Close Middle Wallop and move to training to Shawbury and others to Wattisham.

Have new single site for training all new officer recruits – would need to have good access to a navigable estuary and land training area. Close Sandhurst and Dartmouth.

Same for other ranks/ ratings – Lyneham perhaps – close Cosford Consolidate on Boulmer, for instance.

Close Lympstone and consolidate PARA and RM training at Catterick.

Close Benson and Odiham and consolidate SH force with Junglies at Yeovilton.

Is Northolt really required? Could City Airport or Farnborough be used?

Move RN/RM/AAC Wildcats to Culdrose increasing the use of Predannack.

Reinstate the closure of RMB Chivenor.

Personally, I would have thought it would be cheaper for the Surface Fleet to consolidate on the larger Guz(z) rather than Pompey. Consolidate RFA on Pompey. Complete consolidation of sub-surface fleet at Faslane – insure it and Lossie/ISK will become rUK sovereign base areas in the event of Scottish independence.

(Yes, it should be refuelling)

Last edited by SLXOwft; 8th Jul 2020 at 16:36. Reason: dodgy keyboard
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Old 8th Jul 2020, 17:16
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The trouble with your analysis suggestions SLXOwft, by the time you've progressed with that lot, the airfields you've lost have gone forever. If you dared try and open any again because you were in a hurry to do so, the only thing to count will be the money you've wasted. What you suggest is a bean counter's dream and a military planner's nightmare. We're trying to be too modern and consumed by the idea that we should have progressed way beyond manned planes etc. Squeezing what's left onto very few bases is a problem for personnel, and I appreciate this kind of pure functional thinking has no room for things like Messing according to rank, but these things have their place.

Bases have a strategic importance within, even now and a role if only for dispersal, should it be required. You can't dismiss such things so sweepingly as all part of yesteryear.

After you've reduced the asset to such a cramped basing system and crowded airspace here and there, don't think the Dominic Cummings' won't come looking for more base closures again. Its gone way too far already. If you want a defence posture which tailor fits the country's needs, well there isn't one. The UK doesn't have a uniquely radical defence and security requirement diverse from the other NATO countries or anywhere else in the world.

FB
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Old 8th Jul 2020, 20:24
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Originally Posted by Finningley Boy
The trouble with your analysis suggestions SLXOwft, by the time you've progressed with that lot, the airfields you've lost have gone forever. If you dared try and open any again because you were in a hurry to do so, the only thing to count will be the money you've wasted. What you suggest is a bean counter's dream and a military planner's nightmare. We're trying to be too modern and consumed by the idea that we should have progressed way beyond manned planes etc. Squeezing what's left onto very few bases is a problem for personnel, and I appreciate this kind of pure functional thinking has no room for things like Messing according to rank, but these things have their place.

Bases have a strategic importance within, even now and a role if only for dispersal, should it be required. You can't dismiss such things so sweepingly as all part of yesteryear.

After you've reduced the asset to such a cramped basing system and crowded airspace here and there, don't think the Dominic Cummings' won't come looking for more base closures again. Its gone way too far already. If you want a defence posture which tailor fits the country's needs, well there isn't one. The UK doesn't have a uniquely radical defence and security requirement diverse from the other NATO countries or anywhere else in the world.

FB
Yeah, unfortunately Dominic probably doesn't understand or seemingly care about any of that, and since he appears to have a suspiciously large say in these things, I would say there's a deal of trouble ahead.

My opinion is that Cyber doesn't belong in the armed forces, sitting somewhere between Intelligence Services and the Military.


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Old 8th Jul 2020, 20:57
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Finningley Boy - I agree, that's why I called them daft but the general short-sightedness of politicians and their advisers would make it possible. Their horizon is the next election if we are lucky. Defence is an insurance against what is normally highly unlikely risk but the mind set is when did you last use it or why aren't you using it now. I take my hat off to those who have, in recent years, made a ridiculous level of air ops v resources work. From a naval perspective I can't understand why ships are sold off or scrapped on decommissioning, we used to have the Standby Squadron - unlikely to be needed but we did in '82 (yes, I know it was 38 years ago). With airfields the current vogue is sell them off and build on them - the concept of care and maintenance for possible future expansion is beyond their comprehension. Some were saved for the Army by the pull-out from Germany but that's over. I worry about the vulnerability of all the eggs in one basket. The problem is the important things are often intangible assets and can't be given a realistic financial value. This obviously reveals me to be one of those Sir Humphrey dismisses. British governments slashing defence expenditure and being caught out by believing war can't happen again has been going on since 1814 and probably long before. Since 1995 to the best of my knowledge the RAF, RN and AAC have all lost the use of more airfields than they now have, many of which couldn't be brought back into service. Its acceptable to sell of the national assets rather than increasing revenue because taxation has become taboo. No party is willing to confront the fact that middle income earners in the UK are grossly under taxed in comparison to similar countries.

To say Defence doesn't adapt to changing needs is not true . Typhoon started off under as a replacement for Harrier and Jaguar but turned into an Air Superiority Fighter which has been adapted to a Jaguar & Tornado replacement. The SHAR replacement FCBA became FJCA when Harrier 7/9 replacement was added so we ended up with F-35B not A & C. However, I am not convinced multirole is cheaper than single role in the long run. It is a law of projects that late changes to requirements are exponentially more costly than early changes.

One wild thought, is the division of Officers/WOs/NCOs/Other ranks still fit for purpose in the 21st century? Surely the officer body is no longer confined to the aristocracy and gentry with their need to reflect a sense of superiority. I believe the police all start as beat constables? AAC pilots are not exclusively officers. Retires having lit the blue touch paper.

Last edited by SLXOwft; 9th Jul 2020 at 09:06. Reason: poor spelling
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Old 9th Jul 2020, 06:39
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I believe the police all start as beat constables?
Nope, you can join as an inspector under a direct entry scheme.
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