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US General says British Army less than Par?!?!?!?

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US General says British Army less than Par?!?!?!?

Old 30th Jan 2023, 20:01
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Originally Posted by rolling20
Stop selling off bases for housing and industrial estates.US military leaders have warned that Russia's Severodvinsk-class subs are operating near US coasts.Severodvinsk-class subs have a mix of stealth and striking power that worries US and NATO navies.Why is all our lifting capability concentrated at one base? A few well aimed missiles and our conventional capability would be severed in one go.The 'peace dividend' and ' options for change' sailed a decade ago
It is not a Severodvinsk-class sub. There is no such thing. That is the name of the lead sub in the Yasen class.

What difference would it make (except ramping up costs) to spread transport bases around the UK when one sub could still disable 3 or 4 bases from the same firing position? Having 2 bases a hundred miles apart is just adding cost for my appreciative benefit.

Edited to add that no uk armed forces bases in the UK have deployed missile defences so no matter how many you have they could all be destroyed in a surprise commencement of hostilities.

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Old 30th Jan 2023, 20:30
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Originally Posted by Flyhighfirst
It is not a Severodvinsk-class sub. There is no such thing. That is the name of the lead sub in the Yasen class.

What difference would it make (except ramping up costs) to spread transport bases around the UK when one sub could still disable 3 or 4 bases from the same firing position? Having 2 bases a hundred miles apart is just adding cost for my appreciative benefit.

Edited to add that no uk armed forces bases in the UK have deployed missile defences so no matter how many you have they could all be destroyed in a surprise commencement of hostilities.
Severodvinsk-class is the NATO designation old boy. You may have heard of NATO?
Regardless of cost, it makes good sense to not have all your resources in one basket.
​​​​​​​Sounds like you've got the white flag out already.
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Old 30th Jan 2023, 21:11
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As this is an aviation site, my three ignorant retired MoD civvy questions are in this order:

1 What is the RAF for?
2. Ditto the army
3. Ditto the RN [this one must surely include "maintain and protect the nuclear deterrent 365/24"]

Is there a clear brief statement extant that addresses these questions?
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Old 30th Jan 2023, 21:37
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1st Defence of the Realm and dependence’s
2nd Defence as part of NATO
3rd to project our influence in the wider world.
4th to drive ambulances, fire engines, to act as NHS staff, to act as Border Force staff, to act as flood relief staff etc etc etc, everything none military that keep getting foisted upon them.
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Old 30th Jan 2023, 21:48
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Originally Posted by langleybaston
As this is an aviation site, my three ignorant retired MoD civvy questions are in this order:

1 What is the RAF for?
2. Ditto the army
3. Ditto the RN [this one must surely include "maintain and protect the nuclear deterrent 365/24"]

Is there a clear brief statement extant that addresses these questions?
LB, Here is link to the Govt pamphlet for the RAF. I'm sure the other 2 services have such documents. Please take into consideration that these are Politico Languages and over-complicate simple matters. but it should give you a good idea. Person for person The RAF is better than any other (Management speak!), it's just that we are too small, too hollowed out and fins it difficult to be in two places at once. The UK forces are not less than par, but too small to be an army, just a small defence force hence Tier 2, but a very good one at that!

https://assets.publishing.service.go...r_jdp_0_30.pdf

The four roles of air power.

• Control of the air secures our freedom of action within the air environment.

Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance informs the development of understanding across all environments.

• Attack can coerce and influence actors into changing or maintaining behaviour.

• Air mobility enables movement, manoeuvre and sustainment.

FROM THE RAF WEBSITE
https://www.raf.mod.uk/what-we-do/ov...issance%20(ISR).


Defending the skies of Britain and projecting Britain's power and influence around the world.

The UK and our allies face threats in an uncertain world, from unauthorised aircraft entering protected airspace, to cyber attacks.

RESPOND TO THREATS

Our Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Force based at RAF Lossiemouth (north east Scotland), RAF Coningsby (eastern England), and the Falkland Islands (south Atlantic), are ready to scramble state of the art Eurofighter Typhoons in minutes to intercept threats.

PREVENT CONFLICT

We identify and manage threats before they materialise through intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR). We can rapidly deploy aircraft and personnel around the world to deter conflict and defeat our adversaries if necessary.

We are currently active across four continents with significant operations in Eastern Europe, South Atlantic, and the Mediterranean. Our proximity to unstable regions and potential adversaries provides the air power to curb threats and destabilising behaviour.

WATCH THE SKIES

We use a combination of state-of-art static radar, mobile units, aircraft, and satellites to gather minute-to-minute information on air activity.

Our Air Surveillance and Control Systems Force continuously compile a Recognised Air Picture of the airspace in and around the UK, providing vital early warning of potential threats such as unauthorised aircraft or missiles.

We also monitor threats in space: from space weather and debris that can damage orbiting satellites, to hostile acts from our adversaries.

DELIVER AID

We have the aircraft, the know-how, and the reach to get humanitarian aid, equipment, and people into affected areas quickly.

We support government agencies and emergency services on UK operations.

WORK IN PARTNERSHIP

Air power is most effective in a joint action with other military services such as the British Army and Royal Navy, and with government departments, all working towards a common national goal. We call this a full spectrum approach.
We continuously train and deploy with the armed forces of our NATO allies and global partners in places like Estonia, Romania, and in the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Maintaining good relations with our international partners means we can operate from their bases to expand our global reach.
As a world-class air force we also advise and train other air forces to build their capacity to respond to threats and prevent conflict.

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Old 30th Jan 2023, 22:58
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Originally Posted by cynicalint
LB, Here is link to the Govt pamphlet for the RAF. I'm sure the other 2 services have such documents. Please take into consideration that these are Politico Languages and over-complicate simple matters. but it should give you a good idea. Person for person The RAF is better than any other (Management speak!), it's just that we are too small, too hollowed out and fins it difficult to be in two places at once. The UK forces are not less than par, but too small to be an army, just a small defence force hence Tier 2, but a very good one at that!

https://assets.publishing.service.go...r_jdp_0_30.pdf

The four roles of air power.

• Control of the air secures our freedom of action within the air environment.

Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance informs the development of understanding across all environments.

• Attack can coerce and influence actors into changing or maintaining behaviour.

• Air mobility enables movement, manoeuvre and sustainment.

FROM THE RAF WEBSITE
https://www.raf.mod.uk/what-we-do/ov...issance%20(ISR).


Defending the skies of Britain and projecting Britain's power and influence around the world.

The UK and our allies face threats in an uncertain world, from unauthorised aircraft entering protected airspace, to cyber attacks.

RESPOND TO THREATS

Our Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Force based at RAF Lossiemouth (north east Scotland), RAF Coningsby (eastern England), and the Falkland Islands (south Atlantic), are ready to scramble state of the art Eurofighter Typhoons in minutes to intercept threats.

PREVENT CONFLICT

We identify and manage threats before they materialise through intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR). We can rapidly deploy aircraft and personnel around the world to deter conflict and defeat our adversaries if necessary.

We are currently active across four continents with significant operations in Eastern Europe, South Atlantic, and the Mediterranean. Our proximity to unstable regions and potential adversaries provides the air power to curb threats and destabilising behaviour.

WATCH THE SKIES

We use a combination of state-of-art static radar, mobile units, aircraft, and satellites to gather minute-to-minute information on air activity.

Our Air Surveillance and Control Systems Force continuously compile a Recognised Air Picture of the airspace in and around the UK, providing vital early warning of potential threats such as unauthorised aircraft or missiles.

We also monitor threats in space: from space weather and debris that can damage orbiting satellites, to hostile acts from our adversaries.

DELIVER AID

We have the aircraft, the know-how, and the reach to get humanitarian aid, equipment, and people into affected areas quickly.

We support government agencies and emergency services on UK operations.

WORK IN PARTNERSHIP

Air power is most effective in a joint action with other military services such as the British Army and Royal Navy, and with government departments, all working towards a common national goal. We call this a full spectrum approach.
We continuously train and deploy with the armed forces of our NATO allies and global partners in places like Estonia, Romania, and in the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Maintaining good relations with our international partners means we can operate from their bases to expand our global reach.
As a world-class air force we also advise and train other air forces to build their capacity to respond to threats and prevent conflict.
Yeah but none of that really answers the question you replied to.

That’s a whole bunch of what they do.

It just doesn’t answer the spirit of the question which is really why do we need them to do all of that.

What’s the point?

I think we’ve lived in such comfortable times for so long that many of us are losing track of how nasty the world can be. Politicians pointedly included.

Last edited by Bbtengineer; 30th Jan 2023 at 23:14.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 00:23
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Did I miss the part where it states something akin to "Engage and defeat armed aggression targeting the British Population and Territory".

I did see something about "maintain and change" but that seems to omit the real purpose for maintaining the capability to take on and soundly defeat aggressors.

Sadly, the English Channel's value as a saltwater moat has been overtaken by technology.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 02:28
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
Still one of the biggest spenders on defence - the problem is very little seems to arrive for the money invested.
Its Tory mantra...as long as shareholders are taken care of...job done!
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 11:30
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Originally Posted by SASless
Did I miss the part where it states something akin to "Engage and defeat armed aggression targeting the British Population and Territory".

I did see something about "maintain and change" but that seems to omit the real purpose for maintaining the capability to take on and soundly defeat aggressors.

Sadly, the English Channel's value as a saltwater moat has been overtaken by technology.
Yes, you missed it. Nutty pointed it out. Number one is to defend the realm.
How they do that is defined in other documents but, to the original question of why do we have the armed forces, it is to defend the realm. Exactly the same purpose as defined by other countries, albeit with different language.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 12:21
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As a long-time ex-Army person, I draw huge comfort for the fact that although the British Army has been reduced to a shadow of what it was, the money saved by that reduction has given the UK 2 really super aircraft carriers, ready for the use of pilots and aircraft from the USofA on account of someone forgot to order enough aircraft and/or train enough pilots to give the carriers any strike capability.

These marine behemoths will project British power around the world, ho, ho, ho. What a pity they only really fulfil the operational requirements of the 1970s. Have they ever both been serviceable at the same time?

I would love to see a table showing how many Challenger 2 tanks, c/w trained crews and ammunition stocks, could have been on the inventory instead of those carriers. It beggars belief that the UK can scrape together only 14 tanks (updated model? Don't think so) to send to Ukraine. But of course the MoD knows that the days of the tank battle are long gone, everyone says so. Except that they haven't, as we now know from Ukraine.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 12:58
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Originally Posted by old,not bold
As a long-time ex-Army person, I draw huge comfort for the fact that although the British Army has been reduced to a shadow of what it was, the money saved by that reduction has given the UK 2 really super aircraft carriers, ready for the use of pilots and aircraft from the USofA on account of someone forgot to order enough aircraft and/or train enough pilots to give the carriers any strike capability.

These marine behemoths will project British power around the world, ho, ho, ho. What a pity they only really fulfil the operational requirements of the 1970s. Have they ever both been serviceable at the same time?
Correct me if I'm wrong, but weren't these carriers ordered during a Labour government?
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 13:18
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Originally Posted by chevvron
Plus contractors 'milking' MOD costs as much as possible; how much does it cost nowadays to supply a new lightbulb via a contractor rather than going to B & Q?
Oooh, I know that one.
We wanted to replace approx 200 lamps as part of a project to modernise. BAe agreed to fund it as a green experiment and after getting quotes from 3 suppliers the cost came in at about £2000.
The muti-national company who had the station maintenance contract objected - saying they had the contractual right to undertake the task and then quoted £15k to do it.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 13:58
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Originally Posted by old,not bold
Have they ever both been serviceable at the same time?
Yes. Both were actually very active in 2021. QNLZ is at sea today. PWLS will be once her shaft issue is repaired.

Originally Posted by old,not bold
I would love to see a table showing how many Challenger 2 tanks, c/w trained crews and ammunition stocks, could have been on the inventory instead of those carriers. It beggars belief that the UK can scrape together only 14 tanks (updated model? Don't think so) to send to Ukraine. But of course the MoD knows that the days of the tank battle are long gone, everyone says so. Except that they haven't, as we now know from Ukraine.
What do you think these CR2 would be doing? Are you suggesting that we hold the things to donate to UKR? Or are you suggesting that the UK should be busy operating in UKR?

In common with many brown jobs, you appear to be under the impression that the army was somehow denuded in order to buy the ships. As opposed to the reality, which is that the army has spectacularly failed to articulate what it is for - and instead, has frittered its resources away on bodged equipment programmes (FRES anyone?) and defending infantry cap badges.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 15:28
  #34 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by cynicalint
LB, Here is link to the Govt pamphlet for the RAF. I'm sure the other 2 services have such documents. Please take into consideration that these are Politico Languages and over-complicate simple matters. but it should give you a good idea. Person for person The RAF is better than any other (Management speak!), it's just that we are too small, too hollowed out and fins it difficult to be in two places at once. The UK forces are not less than par, but too small to be an army, just a small defence force hence Tier 2, but a very good one at that!

https://assets.publishing.service.go...r_jdp_0_30.pdf

The four roles of air power.

• Control of the air secures our freedom of action within the air environment.

Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance informs the development of understanding across all environments.

• Attack can coerce and influence actors into changing or maintaining behaviour.

• Air mobility enables movement, manoeuvre and sustainment.

FROM THE RAF WEBSITE
https://www.raf.mod.uk/what-we-do/ov...issance%20(ISR).


Defending the skies of Britain and projecting Britain's power and influence around the world.

The UK and our allies face threats in an uncertain world, from unauthorised aircraft entering protected airspace, to cyber attacks.

RESPOND TO THREATS

Our Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) Force based at RAF Lossiemouth (north east Scotland), RAF Coningsby (eastern England), and the Falkland Islands (south Atlantic), are ready to scramble state of the art Eurofighter Typhoons in minutes to intercept threats.

PREVENT CONFLICT

We identify and manage threats before they materialise through intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR). We can rapidly deploy aircraft and personnel around the world to deter conflict and defeat our adversaries if necessary.

We are currently active across four continents with significant operations in Eastern Europe, South Atlantic, and the Mediterranean. Our proximity to unstable regions and potential adversaries provides the air power to curb threats and destabilising behaviour.

WATCH THE SKIES

We use a combination of state-of-art static radar, mobile units, aircraft, and satellites to gather minute-to-minute information on air activity.

Our Air Surveillance and Control Systems Force continuously compile a Recognised Air Picture of the airspace in and around the UK, providing vital early warning of potential threats such as unauthorised aircraft or missiles.

We also monitor threats in space: from space weather and debris that can damage orbiting satellites, to hostile acts from our adversaries.

DELIVER AID

We have the aircraft, the know-how, and the reach to get humanitarian aid, equipment, and people into affected areas quickly.

We support government agencies and emergency services on UK operations.

WORK IN PARTNERSHIP

Air power is most effective in a joint action with other military services such as the British Army and Royal Navy, and with government departments, all working towards a common national goal. We call this a full spectrum approach.
We continuously train and deploy with the armed forces of our NATO allies and global partners in places like Estonia, Romania, and in the fight against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.
Maintaining good relations with our international partners means we can operate from their bases to expand our global reach.
As a world-class air force we also advise and train other air forces to build their capacity to respond to threats and prevent conflict.
This doesn't read like a full spectrum approach, it all reads like sanitised jargon to put across an image of efficacy and goodwill. About the only combat role admitted to is air defence, everything else is aid relief, prevention and cooperation with the entire world just about. No mention of Ground Attack, Tactical Strike (strictly defunct since the removal of WE177s), anti-shipping, Interdiction? The tone seems to try and avoid any suggestion that the modern RAF might actually need to go to war again. I wonder what a similar mission statement for the Ukrainian Armed Forces would read like, if the same corporate double speakers that wrote this were awarded the task?

FB
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 16:35
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Sadly, while UK Mil has much excellent kit and individuals, it now sadly lacks mass. As currently constituted, it can only ever really be a skilled adjunct to any significant operational scenario. IMO, YMMV.

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Old 31st Jan 2023, 16:58
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Originally Posted by MPN11
Sadly, while UK Mil has much excellent kit and individuals, it now sadly lacks mass. As currently constituted, it can only ever really be a skilled adjunct to any significant operational scenario. IMO, YMMV.

Sent from Nostalgic Dinosaur Rest Home.
And with that comes the problem that if U.K. PLC finally realise their fopar, the trouble Is they have probably already binned the facilities to house any expansion. Gone are the days of care and maintenance.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 17:35
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My sincere thanks to the answers, official, and unofficial, to my #24 question. The official ones impress me not.

My main comment is that the official line acknowledges no limit to the tasks, yet we have systematically [and often very sensibly and virtuously] withdrawn from most of the areas of the globe that were red-coloured.
The other glaring omission is reference to ability to augment rapidly and substantially our peace establishment to a war one.
A root cause of these ills may be our willy-waving membership of the Security Council. Other than the nuclear deterrent [which many others have] such willy-waving is hollow and expensive.

Last edited by langleybaston; 31st Jan 2023 at 17:46.
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 17:43
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MY first thought about this thread was 'is this really new?' People have been screaming for decades that cuts have gone too far and capabilities have been lost. We have seen many VSO's find their voices once they have taken off the uniform for the last time and ensured the pension was safe, but precious few had the moral courage to say a word whilst still serving. I strongly suspect that this is not a unique British problem either.

Regardless, a solution needs to be found and quickly, as war is the ultimate 'come as you are' event, and the invitation often arrives at very short notice. To that end, I see Ben Wallace stated yesterday that whilst he accepts the Forces are below where they should be (he was specifically referencing the Army IIRC), that buying 'off the shelf' would not safeguard British Industry and was therefore not an option. My personal view is 'Who gives a fc*k?'. Surely the ends justifies the means in this case - get capability ASAP in terms of hardware. Get it from the U.S, Korea, Israel...wherever, just get it and worry about industry afterwards. As for manpower, that is also an issue that needs a pragmatic and probably expensive approach. Pay soldiers more (a lot more), build new housing NOW (I have seen fields turned into Bovis or Persimmon estates in months). Tear up legacy contracts and go to the private sector and get the big boys in who can build immediately and quickly. Make being a soldier something that people will aspire to, rather than being one of the few ways to leave a sinkhole estate.

If you think maintaining a large military is expensive, try losing a war.

Or am I being naiive?

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Old 31st Jan 2023, 19:02
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Originally Posted by Bbtengineer
Yeah but none of that really answers the question you replied to.

That’s a whole bunch of what they do.

It just doesn’t answer the spirit of the question which is really why do we need them to do all of that.

What’s the point?

I think we’ve lived in such comfortable times for so long that many of us are losing track of how nasty the world can be. Politicians pointedly included.
Agree fully! But what we do is what we are told to do! The Govt tries to cover up the first principle of warfare by weasel words. The first principle of warfare is that its not the taking part that counts, but the...."
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Old 31st Jan 2023, 19:16
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Originally Posted by Finningley Boy
This doesn't read like a full spectrum approach, it all reads like sanitised jargon to put across an image of efficacy and goodwill. About the only combat role admitted to is air defence, everything else is aid relief, prevention and cooperation with the entire world just about. No mention of Ground Attack, Tactical Strike (strictly defunct since the removal of WE177s), anti-shipping, Interdiction? The tone seems to try and avoid any suggestion that the modern RAF might actually need to go to war again. I wonder what a similar mission statement for the Ukrainian Armed Forces would read like, if the same corporate double speakers that wrote this were awarded the task?

FB
I agree entirely. I did qualify my post with Please take into consideration that these are Politico Languages . We are no longer an Air FORCE, but an Air service to support humanitarian disasters or to cover up Politicians poor decision making, without the means to do so.
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