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France 'concerned' about state of Britain's Armed Forces

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France 'concerned' about state of Britain's Armed Forces

Old 16th Feb 2023, 13:16
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Erm.... If it wasn't for the arrogance of Johnson, there wouldn't be a Ukraine anymore and we would be facing a whole new sh*tshow with Russia still fully manned and equipped sitting on the borders of the likes of Poland ready for part two.

It was Boris that pushed the West into helping Ukraine when no one else would listen, we helped train the Ukrainian army with other allies to be a competent, professional and Western oriented force far removed from what they previously had before the Russians attacked and provided them with NLAW's that in their part blunted Russia's ambitions and forced a withdrawl from the likes of Kyiv.

Yes, an all Leopard force would be ideal, but in supplying them it was part political to embarass our European partners into opening up to the idea of supplying modern tanks by breaking down that red line, and in part a Challenger is an excellent tank, superior to most of the Russian tanks fielded and in a war, every little helps.. to paraphrase a well known store.

Like him or loathe him, at the end of the day he has secured his part in the History of Ukraine and the West, without his timely interjection the world could well have been a different place in Europe, and not for the good.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 13:58
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Originally Posted by pax britanica
Day after day peopel grumble here about the state of UK armed forces and with quite genuine concern. I think our forces do the very very best they can but they are hamstrung with equipment which is , again as repeated regualrly here that is of dubious value or outdated.

When someone outside the UK and we have seen expressions of of concern from France Germany and USA recently , its all swept away in the usual xenophobic tidal wave of abuse to the French and Germans and sarcastic comments about the Americans. Clearly France and Germany are less than happy about UKs potential role as NATO response force. And, why not, after Brexit and the last few years who in their right mind would trust the UK government . Or UK politicians like Johnson who in his own disgusting self agrandising way has pushed himself into the Ukraine situation wihtout any formal backign or authority. The other side of the Boris coin his total incompetence s -give Ukraine all our fighter jets for example. Britain leads the way on tanks when it doesnt , that's America .Wouldnt it be better to allocate the tanks we are sending to Ukraine to NATO so Ukraine could have an almost uniform force of Leopards.

I think UK armed forces are, like Nurses and Teachers, taken for granted and badly treated but somehow still manage to be 'world beating'
You, Sir, are spouting Bolleaux.

Your conflation of the subject with Brexit is complete whataboutery; many of the EU members have underinvested in their armed forces, none more so than Germany who are in a disgusting state of readiness. This governments commitment to the UK Armed Forces since 2010 has been pitiful, on that we agree, but that has nothing to do with our departure from the EU.

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Old 16th Feb 2023, 14:54
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Esteemed Colleagues:
NATO's report on defense burden sharing and spending is here
The UK meets or exceeds the 2.0% target (guideline), and the French don't quite reach it, if you look at the information covering the years 2014 to 2022.
(Table 4 has UK listed as 2.13%(2014) and 2.12%(2022), while France listed as 1.80%(2014) and 1.92%(2022))
The report is dated 27 June 2022. There a quite a few graphs and charts worth considering, at your leisure.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 15:06
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Macron wants a Frenchman as the next head of NATO, not Ben Wallace, who is in the frame
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 15:33
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Originally Posted by pax britanica
UK politicians like Johnson who in his own disgusting self agrandising way has pushed himself into the Ukraine situation wihtout any formal backign or authority.
Leaving aside the juvenile name-calling and terrible spelling, exactly whose formal backing and authority do you think he should have sought? The useless UN? The impotent EU? The uninvolved NATO? Maybe you think he should have checked with the Kremlin first. As others have said, if he hadn't acted when he did there would be no Ukraine today.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 18:07
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Originally Posted by Consol
Could we just get to the jokes about tanks with five reverse gears?
Which part do you find funny?

90,000 killed, 200,000 wounded, and 1,800,000 captured.

puerile schoolboy humour, ignoring the fact that the UK only survived because of a 21 mile wide moat. How many reverse gears were used getting to Dunkirk?
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 18:31
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Originally Posted by T28B
Esteemed Colleagues:
NATO's report on defense burden sharing and spending is here
The UK meets or exceeds the 2.0% target (guideline), and the French don't quite reach it, if you look at the information covering the years 2014 to 2022.
(Table 4 has UK listed as 2.13%(2014) and 2.12%(2022), while France listed as 1.80%(2014) and 1.92%(2022))
The report is dated 27 June 2022. There a quite a few graphs and charts worth considering, at your leisure.
That of course does not take the overall GDP into account, The U.K. GDP is higher than Frances so in real terms the amount of actual money spent will be greater, similarly Germany has a Higher GDP than the U.K. so again even if their spending is less than the 2% in real terms they may have spent a larger amount on defence compared to the U.K.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 18:32
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Originally Posted by 212man
Which part do you find funny?

90,000 killed, 200,000 wounded, and 1,800,000 captured.

puerile schoolboy humour, ignoring the fact that the UK only survived because of a 21 mile wide moat. How many reverse gears were used getting to Dunkirk?
Getting back to the French claims, it does beg irony.

They had plenty of troops and weapons in 1940, but they didnít have the will to fight for their own homes. Iíll take the views of our European Ďalliesí seriously when Germany can field a fully equipped and operationally experienced division, and they start pulling their weight (Netherlands, Poland & Estonia excepted).
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 18:51
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Re some of the responses to my rather deliberate prompt.

Boris was in a position to go to Ukraine initially but certainly not lately

I think it is highly unlikely that he had any material impact on decisions taken in France Germany and USA, not being exactly popular in those countrie. Of course Brexit has little direct influence n the military but at the end of the day NATO is a political structure to direct allied military forces and in my own opinion, unqualified from a military perspective, NATO has been one of the most successful international organisations ever. So brexit has had little to do with the actual activities of NATO per se but it hardly made the UK popular among its main member states and Johnson with his lies and corrupt practices leading up to that hardly endeared him to EU politicians in the same way his ill-judged and pitiful sucking up to Trump left him stranded when Biden won the election.

Of course there had to be comments about France and 1940 - 82 years ago and although the French hardly covered themselves in glory we were no more use at stopping Blitz Kreig than they were.

So please understand I have nothing but admiration for UK armed forces and their personnel , but nothing but contempt for Johnson. Just how much Russian money did his party take leading up to Brexit, along with what has now been seen to be a farago or even a farage of lies which have left us in dire economic straights such that it will be really hard to actually live up to so called commitments to increase 'investment' in the forces..

I am sorry but i just dont buy the ide that Johnson did anything more than a PR stunt , something I agree he is good at.

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Old 16th Feb 2023, 19:08
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I seem to recall French Troops remained behind and held off the German advance granting time for the evacuation of the BEF and some French Forces.

The British were not outnumbered at Singapore but were certainly outmaneuvered.

But....that has naught to do with today as history means nothing if ignored.

Unpreparedness has been the undoing of many a great Power.

That is the lesson we seem to see happening before our eyes.

Could this be a strategic move by some to prevent the UK from being able to think it can send its Army abroad and thus prevent another Dunkirk?

Maybe the French and other NATO members have good reason to fret over the downsizing of the British Military, Air Force, and Navy.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 19:16
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Its all very well saying the UK is spending loads on defence, but when you buy several F35's for example, it takes a big chunk of the budget.

I would suggest that not enough is being spent on other things. We don't have high numbers of boots on the ground for example and the money for looking after them, both on and off duty, is not that forthcoming.

Some units are stretched already and it wouldn't take too much to put them under severe pressure. I know they are good, but that is something to worry about.

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Old 16th Feb 2023, 21:18
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Originally Posted by pax britanica
Re some of the responses to my rather deliberate prompt.

Boris was in a position to go to Ukraine initially but certainly not lately

I think it is highly unlikely that he had any material impact on decisions taken in France Germany and USA, not being exactly popular in those countrie.


Well Boris was there last month and he does not have to go, he does it because he believes in the Ukrainian people and ever since this war started he has put his personal safety at risk in visiting Ukraine to bolster their resolve and to offer the people his support. He was the FIRST to visit,

Sun 22 Jan 2023 14.26 GMT
Boris Johnson has made a surprise visit to Ukraine, saying it was a “privilege” to be there to show solidarity with the war-torn nation.

The former prime minister, who is facing fresh questions over his personal finances, was pictured in the town of Borodianka in the Kyiv region.

He said he had travelled to Ukraine at the invitation of president Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

Rishi Sunak is “supportive” of his visit, Downing Street indicated, after claims it could undermine the prime minister’s authority.

In a statement, Mr Johnson said: “It is a privilege to visit Ukraine at the invitation of President Zelenskiy.
https://www.theguardian.com/politics...rip-to-ukraine


Thank you, Britain.'

Mr Zelensky said: 'London has stood with Kyiv since day one, from the first seconds and minutes of the full-scale war, Great Britain you extended your helping hand when the world had not yet come to understand how to react.

'Boris: you got others united when it seemed absolutely impossible. Thank you.'

Mr Zelensky shared a warm embrace with Mr Sunak earlier as he landed at Stansted Airport in Essex for his surprise visit.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...st-Russia.html


..

..

Last edited by NutLoose; 16th Feb 2023 at 21:55.
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Old 16th Feb 2023, 22:12
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Originally Posted by Timmy Tomkins
Macron wants a Frenchman as the next head of NATO, not Ben Wallace, who is in the frame
PLEASE DON'T GO, BEN !
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 01:36
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Originally Posted by langleybaston
PLEASE DON'T GO, BEN !
If people look back over the nationality of the NATO General Secretary, does anyone believe that they have shown any significant bias to their national political viewpoint ?
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 07:17
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France could be playing a move from the ancient Chinese art of war.

In order to avoid addressing any other country in Europe by name, (and one in particular), they choose a convenient gullible country outside the EU to throw darts at.
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 11:37
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On the same note, and to show that this is not just the opinion of France:

From Sky news a few days ago "US general warns British Army no longer top-level fighting force, defence sources reveal".

According to the sources, the general, referring to the army, said: "You haven't got a tier one. It's barely tier two."

I would have posted the link here but apparently I can't post URL's before I have 8 posts.

I very much wish the best for the UK (having lived there before). Nevertheless I believe that these comments are indicative of a real issue.
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 12:02
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Originally Posted by pax britanica
And, why not, after Brexit and the last few years who in their right mind would trust the UK government . Or UK politicians like Johnson who in his own disgusting self agrandising way has pushed himself into the Ukraine situation wihtout any formal backign or authority. The other side of the Boris coin his total incompetence s -give Ukraine all our fighter jets for example. Britain leads the way on tanks when it doesnt , that's America .Wouldnt it be better to allocate the tanks we are sending to Ukraine to NATO so Ukraine could have an almost uniform force of Leopards


Originally Posted by NutLoose
Erm.... If it wasn't for the arrogance of Johnson, there wouldn't be a Ukraine anymore and we would be facing a whole new sh*tshow with Russia still fully manned and equipped sitting on the borders of the likes of Poland ready for part two.

It was Boris that pushed the West into helping Ukraine when no one else would listen, we helped train the Ukrainian army with other allies to be a competent, professional and Western oriented force far removed from what they previously had before the Russians attacked and provided them with NLAW's that in their part blunted Russia's ambitions and forced a withdrawl from the likes of Kyiv.

Yes, an all Leopard force would be ideal, but in supplying them it was part political to embarass our European partners into opening up to the idea of supplying modern tanks by breaking down that red line, and in part a Challenger is an excellent tank, superior to most of the Russian tanks fielded and in a war, every little helps.. to paraphrase a well known store.

Like him or loathe him, at the end of the day he has secured his part in the History of Ukraine and the West, without his timely interjection the world could well have been a different place in Europe, and not for the good.
Nice to know that Boris made history in saving a very large chunk of land for European freedom and democracy.

Amazing how politicized people will intentionally mislead us.

Well Mr. Pax Brittanica, the people of Ukraine trust Boris because of what he has allowed them to keep. And looking at what has happened in Ukraine, and is still happening, that freedom is a lot more important than the sour grapes over the results of a free vote on Brexit.

Fortunately in the past year, Britain did not have a repeat, gullible leader, trusting an evil regime so as to think we were once again achieving …..Peace(or should I say Pax) in our time.

Last edited by punkalouver; 18th Feb 2023 at 01:15.
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 14:39
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Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan
If people look back over the nationality of the NATO General Secretary, does anyone believe that they have shown any significant bias to their national political viewpoint ?
I have no idea, the job seems pretty thankless, like herding cats.
Wallace is making a decent fist of fighting our corner with the Treasury and representing both us and Ukraine.
He was a serving officer ...... nice to have someone in the job that has some idea of what he is heading up.
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 20:01
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France have forgotten that we don't have to have the same level of defence spending as they do as we don't have to buy white flags.
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Old 17th Feb 2023, 20:46
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Originally Posted by J.A.F.O.
France have forgotten that we don't have to have the same level of defence spending as they do as we don't have to buy white flags.
More to the point they don't have a 5th Gen combat aircraft, nor will they have until if/when FCAS becomes available.
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