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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 13th Sep 2020, 16:57
  #421 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
I think we should take the detailed Tornado history discussion somewhere else TBH - it has little to do with the future..............

I'm sure we can make new mistakes at least as bad as any old ones...................
How about, return of the Tonka!

FB
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Old 13th Sep 2020, 18:13
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
I think we should take the detailed Tornado history discussion somewhere else TBH - it has little to do with the future..............

I'm sure we can make new mistakes at least as bad as any old ones...................
Upgrade the radar and the engines, sure to be a lot cheaper than the Tempest.
Do I see a political platform emerging??
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Old 13th Sep 2020, 19:28
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At the risk of further thread drift.

Although the roles may to a have differed the first the first three Tornado sqns had ex-Vulcan number plates 9, 27, and 617, 9 of course later shifted to RAFG.
Prior to 1990 in addition to RAFG there were six 1 Group squadrons (including 45/TWCU) with a nuclear strike role.

Whatever the original intentions, to a greater or lesser extent the MRCA ended up successfully replacing Vulcan, Canberra, Jaguar, Buccaneer, even Harrier in nuclear, conventional and maritime strike roles plus Phantoms and Lightnings in AD roles.

By force of circumstance Typhoon, F-35 and Reaper, in very limited numbers, have been adapted to plug the Tornado hole and that of (Sea) Harrier. Maybe Tempest will have a better chance of being designed to fill its actual rather than initially unintended roles.

As I may have said before governments of all hues have ransacked the defence budget for short term gain in short sighted reaction to economic and political events. Wellington said if the government hadn't disbanded his Peninsular army in 1814 to save money, he could have taken the offensive in 1815 and not fought the close run thing that was Waterloo, with an army largely composed of raw recruits. The CFE treaty and the collapse of the Soviet Union allowed a succession of governments to shrink the pot. Ironically while they were knackering the country's military assets by fighting a succession of conflicts.

In despite of a bankrupt economy the post war governments raised the taxes to pay for the welfare state and the nuclear deterrent. Like aerial warfare in WW1 the cyber threat is new and additional and needs additional funds to meet it as the non-cyber threat hasn't vanished. Unfortunately a combination of Covid and a generation of politicos who have made overt additional taxation suicidally toxic mean the funds won't be provided.

I will get off my soapbox now.
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Old 14th Sep 2020, 06:50
  #424 (permalink)  
 
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SLXowft,

Your last paragraph is spot on, Cybre, AI and Space are, as you say, the new aeroplane and indeed, the new Tank and Submarine, but the vital point is that these were then and are now, additional strands to the defence spectrum, not developments to replace the obsolescent. Too many in the political world see the comparison in terms of Tanks versus Cavalrymen with Sabres etc rather than the Tank will support the Infantry, as does the Artillery already. The Submarine will help protect the, Carriers, Cruisers, Destroyers and Frigates etc. The aeroplane contested other aeroplanes and provided long-range strike which we ultimately rely on Submarines for, the latter being the earlier patented invention. But for throughout, aeroplanes have supported sea and land operations, even though as pr00ne would point out, the RAF lost a hell of a lot of its CAS/BAI capability from 1957 onwards until the advent of the Harrier/Jaguar etc.

FB


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Old 14th Sep 2020, 07:04
  #425 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by pr00ne View Post
Typerated,

Just to further back up what Finningley Boy said earlier, the RAF got exactly what they wanted in MRCA/Tornado. The range issue concerned the TSR-2 and F-111K, and was predicated round the Far East requirement, not Europe. Even after the pull out from Singapore and Malaysia was announced, Healey was talking about basing long range strike aircraft (TSR-2 then F-111K) on islands in the Indian ocean or even in Australia.
The MRCA as was was conceived in a post Far East era and that long range requirement was no longer there. The idea of the RAF striking Moscow went with the end of the V-Bomber deterrent, and the tactical requirement was to strike Eastern Europe and the Kola peninsular, which is what Tornado was actually designed for.
It was THE best solution to this need, and gave the RAF the fast, low level, two seat radar equipped well defended strike aircraft it had sought to replace Canberra from the late 50's on. Buccaneer was an interim replacement, never really up to the job, and as for Jaguar...
The MRCA was in fact the REAL replacement for the Jaguar's predecessor, the Phantom FGR2, the aircraft I flew in Germany. This was the fast, low level two seat well equipped and versatile radar equipped strike aircraft that the RAF needed in Europe. Just so ironic that it had actually been a planned purchase to replace Lightning in the AD role. The fact that the RN no longer had a requirement for their FG1 fleet beyond the 28 they eventually took, meant that some one in the ivory towers realised just what they could do in Germany with the FGR2, especially as NATO had adopted flexible response and a conventional period of warfare, as opposed to the all out nuclear retaliation that the TSR-2 was designed for.

I realise that the MRCA range was woeful compared to that of the Vulcan, but in fact there never actually WAS a Vulcan replacement in the RAF, as the bulk of the RAF Tornado fleet was committed to Germany, thus restoring a level of credibility to the strike attack role lost when the Jaguar replaced the FGR2 in Germany. When the RAFG Jaguar squadrons re-equipped with Tornado the Vulcan squadrons just withered on the vine and were disbanded one after the other. The TRUE Vulcan replacement of course was Polaris, THIS was the UK threat to Moscow and other points east. The remaining Vulcans post 1969 being committed to theatre nuclear strike, the conventional capability also being left to wither on the vine, hence the hasty rushing around to resurrect it in 1982!

In fact, talking of the post 1969 theatre nuclear Vulcans, I always wondered at some of my allocated strike targets in RAFG. SAM sites and similar in Eastern Germany, they always to me looked like we were blasting a path for someone else...

And as for your snipe at the F3, it was NOT a fighter designed to mix it with Migs and Sukhois, it was a long range autonomous interceptor designed to loiter 400 miles off the UK coast at low level at night or in a snow storm and take out Regimental sized Backfire raids heading for the UK. NO other aircraft of the day, with the possible exception of the AIM-54 equipped F-14, came anywhere near meeting that requirement. It wasn't the fault of the F3 that the world changed in 1989.
Depends I suppose by when you are looking at the RAF' requirements - in 1968 for the "Future Aircraft Study" this was for an aircraft with strategic range and with the range for operation outside of the Central Front.
But as the other 5 nations (initially) for MCRA were after a single seat F-104 replacement the RAF requirement was whittle away. From 1000 miles radius for F-111 and TSR_2 down to 700 ish for AFVG Tornado radius was heading south in order to secure collaboration.
It might be what they wanted when they got them but it was not what the started the exercise wanting - not even close!

As an aside to the RAF 60/early 70s purchasing fun and games to buy the Harrier/Jaguar /F-4/ Buccaneer/ Tornado - they will come in useful we just don't know where yet philosophy!
The Tornado requirement for the Germans was impacted by the Luftwaffe wanting to buy the Jaguar to replace the F-104 but being lent on to buy the F-4F (to offset the cost of US troops in Germany - echos of today!) the F-4 was then more used as a fighter.

On face value I'd agree with your F3 comments - the F-15 was rejected as single seat design and the need was seen for a 2 seater interceptor to find the Backfires behind lots of ECM.
But I'd also suggest it did not need too much imagination to envisage an Air-Air only F-15E variant - I might be wrong but I'm sure Warton did!
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Old 14th Sep 2020, 16:38
  #426 (permalink)  
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"the vital point is that these were then and are now, additional strands to the defence spectrum, not developments to replace the obsolescent."

FB - I take your point but surely Tanks replaced Cavalry - who were obsolescent - and Submarines, like aircraft, were a completely new type of warfare which did do things like protect Carriers but that is not and never was their main aim or use.
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Old 15th Sep 2020, 11:13
  #427 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
"the vital point is that these were then and are now, additional strands to the defence spectrum, not developments to replace the obsolescent."

FB - I take your point but surely Tanks replaced Cavalry - who were obsolescent - and Submarines, like aircraft, were a completely new type of warfare which did do things like protect Carriers but that is not and never was their main aim or use.
Yes, my point being that the danger is Wallace & Cummings and co will take the view that Cybre and AI are the 21st Century tank to replace everything as if as obsolete as the Cavalry. But tanks support the old as stone age man infantry!

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Old 15th Sep 2020, 11:37
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https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...tary-tech.html

Ok, here we jolly well go! Sorry its reported in the Daily Mail, I understand how many are put off by that but...

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Old 15th Sep 2020, 17:34
  #429 (permalink)  
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project Artemis

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/n...tter-5zpxq83w2

Dominic Cummings flaunts historic defence innovation letter


Dominic Cummings has been seen clutching an archive letter from a former US general who railed against defence procurement red tape and was a champion of technology in the military. The letter, written by the former US air force commander General Bernard Schriever, complained of a “blizzard of legislation” around defence procurement and a system “inhibiting technological innovation”.

Boris Johnson’s chief adviser is likely to have been aware that the text of the document would be captured by photographers as he walked into Downing Street this morning.......

The letter was written in 1986 to the architect of an American defence spending review conducted during Ronald Reagan’s presidency..... A pioneer of missiles that ushered in the space age, he had been quick to spot the growing importance of the domain beyond Earth’s atmosphere, remarking in 1957: “In the long haul, our safety as a nation may depend on our achieving space superiority.”

It was a sentiment echoed in a modern context today by the head of the RAF, who served notice that space is now a “contested war-fighting domain” in which attacks on satellites could have a “disastrous effect” on people’s lives......

Air Chief Marshal Michael Wigston declared that the UK “can no longer assume the unchallenged access to air or space that we have enjoyed for the last three decades”.

“We are critically dependent on space, so we must ensure the safety and security of the space domain,” the chief of the air staff said during a speech at RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire. “Our access to space is fundamental to national security and any loss or disruption to our satellite services would have a disastrous effect on people’s day-to-day lives. We are working closely with international allies, including the US, to reinforce responsible and safe behaviours in space and to build expertise, understanding of what others are doing in space.”

Last year Britain became the first formal partner in the US-led Operation Olympic Defender, a multinational military coalition formed to deter hostile actors against causing trouble in space.

The Ministry of Defence is pursuing its ambition to send into low Earth orbit a constellation of responsive small satellites, which are cheaper than previous generation satellites and easier to launch*. Codenamed Artemis, the programme aims eventually to beam live, high-resolution video imagery directly into the cockpits of the RAF’s fighter jet fleet.

The RAF will increasingly turn to unmanned drones rather than piloted aircraft. By 2040 drones will make up 90 per cent of the service’s fleet, with combat jets accounting for the remaining 10 per cent, Ben Wallace, the defence secretary, has said.

At present Britain has nine Reaper drones compared with 137 Typhoon fighter jets and 18 F-35 fighter jets......



*The real reason behind buying a controlling interest in OneWeb perhaps?


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Old 18th Sep 2020, 20:37
  #430 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by typerated View Post
Tornado was a long way from what the RAF wanted

And Typhoon is a model of how to not run an aircraft program
Compared to, say, the F-35 programme, which is of course a shining example of how to run a programme?
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Old 19th Sep 2020, 05:57
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Originally Posted by Jackonicko View Post
Compared to, say, the F-35 programme, which is of course a shining example of how to run a programme?
Fair call - bad used of words on my part - more the project (being multinational) was at the mercy of lots of politics and of course had a torrid time in the 90s from this. Not the fault of the engineers or project mangers.

My frustration is that the UK felt it needed partners to start - then often didn't get the airplane it wanted (see Tornado and Jaguar! )

Compare to say Sweden and it's homegrown fighters.

I think the F-35 was fatally flawed from the specification stage.
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Old 19th Sep 2020, 19:11
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If some of you can ignore the name of the website and some of its posts, you might find this article interesting (but a tad late to influence the current review):

https://briefingsforbritain.co.uk/no...ybrid-warfare/


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Old 20th Sep 2020, 11:40
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Originally Posted by BATCO View Post
If some of you can ignore the name of the website and some of its posts, you might find this article interesting (but a tad late to influence the current review):

https://briefingsforbritain.co.uk/no...ybrid-warfare/


Batco
Indeed BATCO,

I've posted here and elsewhere about the thoughtless and ignorant approach, which I fear the UK Defence review is about to be blighted with, that is that Cybre, AI and Space are all that matter in the future. I'm not sure, but Ben Wallace seems consumed with this as much as Cummings and his comparison with the original introduction of space and the missile concept. Has Cummings ever wondered just how conflicts have been resolved, a word I choose advisedly, since.

FB
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Old 1st Oct 2020, 07:36
  #434 (permalink)  
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https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/b...rter-gjscz6mpn

Beijing engaging in warfare by stealth, says General Sir Nick Carter

......General Sir Nick Carter yesterday unveiled a new “integrated operating concept” for the armed forces as he warned they must do more to combat adversaries attacking the nation using means beyond traditional warfare......

In a speech at Policy Exchange, the UK-based centre-right think tank, Sir Nick said that Beijing has developed technologies that have outpaced the evolution of international law, as it has sought to avoid its actions “being classified as conflict”. The People’s Liberation Army has stated that the blurred boundary between peace and war had created “opportunities for the military to achieve its ends, disguising its activities as civilian, and therefore peaceful”, he noted.

Sir Nick added: “China’s new Strategic Support Force is designed to achieve dominance in the space and cyberdomains. It commands satellite information attack and defence forces; electronic assault forces and internet assault forces; campaign information operations forces, which include conventional electronic warfare forces, anti-radiation assault forces, and battlefield cyberwarfare forces.”.....


He stressed that stealth technologies will become increasingly important. “Warfare is increasingly a competition between hiding and finding,” he said.

He also flagged that the British military will move away from expensive, crewed platforms. He said these were “increasingly vulnerable to swarms of self-co-ordinating smart munitions — perhaps arriving at hypersonic speeds or ballistically from space — designed to swamp defences already weakened by pre-emptive cyberattack”.

His intervention is likely to raise eyebrows in the Royal Navy about the future of their two aircraft carriers, which collectively cost £6.2 billion........
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Old 1st Oct 2020, 09:44
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Originally Posted by typerated View Post
My frustration is that the UK felt it needed partners to start - then often didn't get the airplane it wanted (see Tornado and Jaguar! )

The reason usually cited for partnering is sharing of development costs, which can reduce the bill in the first 10 years (which is all the Government really cares about... the bill in later years is likely to be someone elseís problem). It doesnít usually reduce the initial bill by as much as expected: history shows the total development cost of a partnered programme increases by roughly the square root of the number of partners due to inefficiencies like time wasted while negotiating requirements, duplication of facilities to preserve national industry, and development of bespoke configurations. That any up-front saving is very likely to be eliminated through life by further inefficiency in running parallel national and international upgrade programmes seems, again, to be irrelevant at the programme definition stage.

So why does it keep happening when the UK could easily follow Sweden or Japanís example? I think there are two main reasons:

1) British industry looks at the cancellation of TSR-2, Nimrod AEW and MRA4 and sees UK-only programmes which fell victim to changes of political whim. The fact that all three were flawed does not seem to factor. Industry then looks at Tornado and Typhoon and sees programmes which were protected over decades from changes in political whim by robust international agreements. Industry therefore wants more of the same and is happy to sacrifice some workshare to achieve it. (Although when you have a Government which is prepared to countenance breaking international agreements, maybe this is no longer quite the insurance policy industry thinks it is!)

2) There is a sizeable community in Whitehall, not limited to the Foreign Office and rather more influential than the front line commands, which sees international cooperation as the primary goal rather than an enabler. The end rather than the means, if you like. This community would happily sign up to a minor role in a consortium of European nations delivering ĎChocolate Fireguard Mk3í if it provided an opportunity for a piece of paper to be signed in front of a collection of flags and six-monthly steering boards in a succession of international venues. Itís just what they do, and the undercurrent continues even now as a way of mitigating Brexit damage.

Last edited by Easy Street; 1st Oct 2020 at 10:14.
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Old 1st Oct 2020, 10:21
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Easy Street

Excellent.
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Old 1st Oct 2020, 10:46
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Thanks Tuc, Iím pleased to see my analysis endorsed by someone of your experience! I should add that the MODís Investment Approvals Committee and its scrutineers can effectively be sidelined by industry and the aforementioned Whitehall community forging international agreements (free of technical scrutiny) ahead of the major investment decisions, while telling the Treasury and No.10 that partnering is the only way to make the programme affordable and thus ensuring that only the reduced level of 10-year funding is allocated. Then, at the investment decision point, the faits accomplis of an international agreement and insufficient funding for a UK-only development phase mean that the IAC is reduced to a rubber-stamping role, conveniently limiting the ability of the front line commands to apply requirements which might compel an alternative path. For all the criticism it can sometimes receive, the MOD is not in sole control of these grand strategic games.

Last edited by Easy Street; 1st Oct 2020 at 23:28.
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Old 2nd Oct 2020, 06:50
  #438 (permalink)  
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https://www.defensenews.com/global/e...-the-military/

Britain unveils new operating concept for a ‘fundamental transformation in the military’

LONDON — The British military and government must “fundamentally change” the way they counter the political and military ambitions of authoritarian rivals , or risk being overwhelmed, warned the country’s top soldier.

Gen. Nick Carter’s speech at the Policy Exchange think tank Sept. 30 coincided with the publication of Britain’s new “Integrated Operating Concept.” The chief of the Defence Staff said key changes backed by the concept include improved integration of effort across government and with allies, equipment modernization, and constant competition with adversaries below the threshold of war.

The concept says the strategy rethink “represents the most significant change in UK military thought in several generations. It will lead to a fundamental transformation in the military instrument and the way it is used.”

Carter said one of the “big ideas” in the operational concept was that it makes a distinction between “operating” and “war fighting."

“In an era of persistent competition, our deterrent posture needs to be more dynamically managed and modulated. This concept therefore introduces a fifth 'C' — that of competition — to the traditional deterrence model of comprehension, credibility, capability and communication,” he said. “This recognizes the need to compete below the threshold of war in order to deter war, and to prevent one’s adversaries from achieving their objectives in fait accompli strategies, as we have seen in the Crimea, Ukraine, Libya and further afield.

“Competing involves a campaign posture that includes continuous operating on our terms and in places of our choosing.”

Carter also identified the nature of the growing threat driving Britain to rethink its strategy.

“Our authoritarian rivals see the strategic context as a continuous struggle in which nonmilitary and military instruments are used unconstrained by any distinction between peace and war. These regimes believe that they are already engaged in an intense form of conflict that is predominantly political rather than kinetic,” he said. “Their way of warfare is strategic, it is synchronized and systematic, and our response must be too.”

The new concept comes ahead of the government’s Integrated Defence Review, expected in the second half of November. The review is planned to bring together British policy thinking across defense, security, foreign policy and overseas development spending.

Government ministers and advisers previously signaled the review would see the military effort pivot away from conventional military capabilities and move toward a greater focus on space, cyberspace and artificial intelligence.

Carter’s speech and the new strategy document are the best evidence to date of where the government’s plan for change is heading.......
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Old 2nd Oct 2020, 09:59
  #439 (permalink)  
 
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Given budget cancellation, I'd expect delay to the review. Think I've already seen mutterings to that effect in reports in the Times.
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Old 2nd Oct 2020, 14:33
  #440 (permalink)  
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Trouble is Carter's speech never addressed critical issues like vested interests, available cash and lack of interest by the Great British Public

Like Comrade Parts I suspect it'll be kicked down the road using the Covid excuse. BoJo has never evinced much interest details of defence
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