HMS Queen Elizabeth and her Carrier Strike Group will deploy to the Pacific later this year.

Prior to the deployment, it is understood that the carrier strike group will go through a work-up trial off the west Hebrides range sometime in early 2021.

It is understood that the deployment will see the Carrier Strike Group sail in the Mediterranean Sea, the Gulf and end up in the Pacific before returning home.

The Ministry of Defence say that the Carrier Strike Group “offers Britain choice and flexibility on the global stage, reassuring our friends and allies and presents a powerful deterrent to would-be adversaries.”

What makes up the UK Carrier Strike Group?

The Ministry of Defence say that the group includes NATO’s most sophisticated destroyers — the Royal Navy’s Type 45s HMS Diamond and HMS Defender and US Navy Arleigh Burke-class USS The Sullivans as well as frigates HMS Richmond and HMS Kent from the UK. The Dutch Navy’s HNLMS Evertsen will also join.

The units that could be involved in the upcoming Carrier Strike Group 2021 deployment.

“The task of protecting an aircraft carrier involves many ships, submarines and people. A Carrier Strike Group has an escort in the form of Type 23 Frigates and Type 45 destroyers, giving the strike group the ability to defend against above and below the sea threats. The Royal Fleet Auxiliary also play a vital role, keeping the strike group replenished with food and armament. The Queen Elizabeth-class carriers will be deployed with up to two operational Lightning squadrons and 24 F-35Bs on board, with a maximum capacity allowing for up to 36.”

Commodore Steve Moorhouse, Commander UK Carrier Strike Group, said:

“The new UK Carrier Strike Group is the embodiment of British maritime power, and sits at the heart of a modernised and emboldened Royal Navy.”

Vice Admiral Jerry Kyd, former commander of HMS Queen Elizabeth, had previously commented on the initial deployment and the gradual increase in air wing numbers:

“We are constrained by the F-35 buy rate even though that was accelerated in SDSR in 2015, so initial operating capability numbers in 2020 are going to be very modest indeed. We will flesh it out with helicopters, and a lot depends on how many USMC F-35s come on our first deployment in 2021. But by 2023, we are committed to 24 UK jets onboard, and after that it’s too far away to say.”

A squadron of US Marine Corps F-35B jets will join British jets on the carrier for the deployment.

How has China reacted?

This all comes despite China recently warning the UK against sending a carrier to the South China Sea, one of the potential destinations for the group on its voyage.

Then-Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson told Australian ministers in 2018 that HMS Queen Elizabeth would conduct freedom of navigation patrols in the disputed South China Sea region on her maiden deployment this year.

Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop also said at the time:

“We spoke about the challenges including in the South China Sea and we had a long discussion about the Pacific and the opportunities for deeper British engagement in our part of the world.”

Johnson (now Prime Minister for anyone oblivious of that fact) said at the time in response to concerns raised regarding freedom of navigation in the South China Sea:

“One of the first things we will do with the two new colossal aircraft carriers that we have just built is send them on a freedom of navigation operation to this area, to vindicate our belief in the rules-based international system and in the freedom of navigation through those waterways which are absolutely vital for world trade.”

You can read more about this by going to the article linked to below.

China warns UK against sending carrier to South China Sea

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Matt
Matt
5 months ago

Surely one of the most important things in regards to the South China sea is to come to some agreement with China on where the border lies. If we (the international community) can’t agree some sort of border with China, (that China will agree to), then there will always be tension in the region. For this to happen I believe there would need to be a bit of give and take on both sides to get a good enough result. Several nations all have varying disputes over the different areas in the SCS. So why not get a committee together… Read more »

julian1
julian1
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

there used to be an organization called the United Nations. China, US, Britain amongst the permananet members of the security council. you don’t hear of it much anymore – isn’t that the vehicle to table the talks?

Matt
Matt
5 months ago
Reply to  julian1

Thanks Julian, you have highlighted my lack of knowledge in international affairs quite well haha.
You certainly raise a good point, this does sound like something the UN could address. Maybe there hasn’t been enough pressure or political will to do so?
What are your thoughts on the carrier group sailing through the SCS knowing full well the Chinese won’t like it?
Also, what do you think about readdressing the borders and territorial claims?
Cheers
[email protected]

julian1
julian1
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

i didn’t mean to sound sarcastic, not towards you anyway. my sarcasm was more directed towards the lack of teeth of the UN. It’s not great but its probably the only org around and perhaps with Biden we could consider using it to resolve the issues. I do believe in free navigation at sea of course but can’t help but think its become more important to the UK post-Brexit. I would be happier if the UN sponsored the freedom of navigation or at least an extra-national organization and that a fleet could be assembled from a mass of countries. I… Read more »

Peter S
5 months ago
Reply to  julian1

Completely agree.

Steve
Steve
5 months ago
Reply to  julian1

There is nothing really the UN can do where security council members are involved, as they will just veto anything. The security council veto needs to be removed in order for the UN to be effective, which clearly will never happen as the members of the council are too scared that it will be used against them. It was effectively created to ensure the powerful nations kept control over the weaker. Flat out declining china claim, over the zone is never going to work (china believes it has a right over the region and no amount of argument is going… Read more »

TrevorH
TrevorH
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

Hard lines China. They do not own the so called South China Sea. Full stop. So stop pretending they do or have any right to.

Anymore than they have any right to own Tibet.

Pete
Pete
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

Left unchecked China will take more and more territory to the south and to the East. The issue is fishing rights and mineral resources as well as control of critical trade routes between East Asia and Europe, Mid East and Africa. Claims extend South of Natuna Island which is a significant Indonesian island Give an inch and they will take a mile. UN is the right forum to negotiate but meanwhile freedom of navigation is critical.

BB85
BB85
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

I think the UN has already rejected China’s claims over the South China Sea as they have absolutely no merit. In reality it doesn’t really matter because China will do whatever it wants in the South China Sea when it comes to fishing and drilling because there is nothing Vietnam, Malaysia or the Philippines can do to challenge them. China is just trying to justify their behaviour

TrevorH
TrevorH
5 months ago
Reply to  BB85

We will end up being allied with Vietnam I think and Vietnam are determined to keep their sovereignty.
Certainly if we want cheap tat, then we could just as easily get it from Vietnam.

Nathan
Nathan
5 months ago
Reply to  TrevorH

Perhaps it is time we started to invest in our African common wealth partners. They need our help technologically and in terms of training. They have the resources. Let’s work together as real partners!

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
5 months ago
Reply to  BB85

Their pushing on Taiwan again too, for the last two days running theyve sent 13 aircraft into Taiwanese airspace (mix of types). The Taiwanese have had to resort to firing training missiles at them (active seekers but no warhead) to literally push them out.

JohnG
5 months ago
Reply to  Matt

Somewhat stating the obvious here, China’s claims are clearly preposterous. There is no ‘middle ground’ with this. Furthermore China’s stance is that it’s for them and their local neighbours to sort out, ignoring outside influence. This is obviously to China’s advantage as the other people with overlying claims to the SCS are seriously outgunned by China. There is a fear of appeasement with this, so it is right to make a stand. It’s just a shame that it’s pretty much closing the stable door after the horse has bolted (artificial island building etc). Further to this, it’s a shame that… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
5 months ago
Reply to  JohnG

I think the link below sums it up quite nicely: https://www.forbes.com/sites/timdaiss/2016/07/12/philippines-wins-south-china-sea-case-against-china-court-issues-harsh-verdict/?sh=336ab6e17765 This is the international court ruling in 2016 that stated China has no claim to any of the areas in the South China Sea that is in dispute. They also stated that the area should be neutral territory. China, quite obviously attacked the tribunals ruling and ignored it. They have used assertive possession or trespass to claim the area. The other surrounding countries are financially and militarily too weak to counter China. So its up to those that have the means to keep a check on China, i.e. the… Read more »

Steve
Steve
5 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

The simple question you have to ask in any negotiation is why is in it for the other side to back down or compromise. Right now from china’s perspective, all they see is the US and its allies operating in its back lawn unchecked.

I have no idea what it could be, but until china is given a reason, which benefits them, to change its stance, why would they.

No amount of freedom of navigation passes is going to impact that, all it does it reinforce china belief that it needs to protect itself.

Steve
Steve
5 months ago
Reply to  Steve

I meant “what is in it” not “why”.

Peter S
5 months ago

This is a reckless even silly deployment. Britain has no claim to any part of the South China Sea. It is not up to Britain to police freedom of navigation principles on the other side of the world, least of all with a carrier that won’t even be fully equipped.
What is needed to send an effective message to China is a massive international naval demonstration, involving all the countries affected by Chinese encroachment. Anything less will just provoke derision.

Sean Crowley
Sean Crowley
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Wont see that , they are all scared of China , so they leave it up to other people .

DJ
DJ
5 months ago
Reply to  Sean Crowley

Add up the combined naval & air power of all the others in the SCS area (except China) & compare that to Singapore. Bare in mind, most Singapore gear is modern top shelf stuff. The only SE Asian nations capable of pushing back is Vietnam (on land) & Singapore (air & naval). Singapore does not have any SCS claims & is basically a city state of less than 6m people.

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Britain has no claim to any part of the South China Sea”. No one should, that’s the point of FONOPs

Ron
Ron
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Peter S. I do not think that the UK lays claim to anything in that part of the world. However we still have defence responsibilities to some of the nations in that area. As far as I understand the CSG will be taking part in Ex Bersama Lama a standing commitment to Aus/NZ/ Malaysia and Singapore. All of whom take part. I think this has been a standing commitment since 1967. I do agree with your point of nations directly effected should combine there political and national strenght to stand as a united front against Chinese encroachment. However, many of… Read more »

Peter S
5 months ago
Reply to  Ron

The Five Power agreement of 1971 is an agreement to consult if one power is attacked. There is no commitment to military action, unlike NATO. Of these powers only Malaysia is directly affected by China’s aggressive claims and encroachment. So Britain is entirely free to choose whether or not to undertake a freedom of navigation operation. But what effect will this have on China? None whatsoever. They are perfectly aware of the size and state of UK armed forces. And there’s the risk: that knowing how little strength in depth we have, the PLN adopts an aggressive response and damage… Read more »

Andy P
Andy P
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Not sure its primarily by Britain Peter, we’re just doing our wee part.

Rokuth
Rokuth
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

I live in Malaysia. I am also aware of the regular military exercises called Bersama Lima (roughly translates to Five Together) that is the offspring of the Five Power Defence Agreement. The last time the UK Military participated in the exercise was in 2019 with the RAF participating with the Armed Forces of Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand. In previous exercises the Royal Navy has participated as well. While the UK may not join the Exercises regularly, they do show up. The fact that a Royal Navy Carrier Strike Force would be sailing through the Straits of Malacca, IMHO… Read more »

BB85
BB85
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

There is nothing reckless about it. China has no claim on the South China sea what so ever. When we do deploy the ships to the Pacific it would send an even bigger message to China if we did not sail through the South China sea and that they can do what ever they want with it as no one is prepared to challenge them, even though in reality that is what happens now anyway.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Disagree, as if we are able then we should step up where others aren’t able. It may be through a lack of assets, a lack of will or plain fear, but, if everyone stands back, evil will prosper mate. A quick look at history shows that. Do I think we should be sending a CBG, not sure, would prefer not to but then again we shouldn’t ignore a violent and aggressive bully just because he isn’t currently bullying us!

John Clark
John Clark
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Absolutely Airborne, all it takes for evil to prosper, is for good men to do nothing.

We need a NATO of the Far East, but it will need much closer cooperation by countries like Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia …. Not natural bed fellows.

TrevorH
TrevorH
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

We have interests. We gave allies in the region. China has no claim on the South China Sea. This deployment involve a things other than the South China Sea as well.

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

It’s up to the international community to police and uphold the principles of free of navigation – of which Britain remains a significant voice.

Hopefully Australia, Japan, Malaysia and many of our other friends in the region will join us for a variety of exercises to demonstrate international unity and resolve.

AlexS
AlexS
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Britain has no claim to any part of the South China Sea.

Of course it does have the claim to be able to travel in all international waters in South China Sea.

4th watch
4th watch
5 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Crap this is a start of push back on Chinese illegality in the South China Sea.

Andy P
Andy P
5 months ago

No mention of a ‘black war canoe’ in the list of escorts although there’s one in the picture.

Ron
Ron
5 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

There will be one somewhere lurking around. The RN does not comment on SSN/SSBN deployments. It is not the silent service for nothing.

Andy P
Andy P
5 months ago
Reply to  Ron

They generally don’t name units (not that its hard to figure out when you have as few as we do) but they have said in the past an SSN would be accompanying the deployment and they have one in the wee picture.

DJ
DJ
5 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

There is also a twin engined jet AEW&C aircraft in the graphic. Someone’s ‘black war canoe’ is likely to attend. No so sure about the AEW&C.

James Fennell
James Fennell
5 months ago
Reply to  DJ

It’s a P8

DJ
DJ
5 months ago
Reply to  James Fennell

One or the other. Whose though?

Paul T
Paul T
5 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

I thought that HMS Dauntless would be on this Deployment – obviously won’t be Ready after it’s PIP Upgrade.

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

There will almost certainly be a Trafalgar or Astute in company. No way it would be acceptable to deploy such a large group to The Gulf and Far East without one!

Tricky to know the specifics given that the MoD doesn’t publicize submarine deployments but if a SSN doesn’t shadow the task-group from The UK then perhaps one will join East of Suez if there’s already a boat on Tomahawk duty in the region.

Andy P
Andy P
5 months ago
Reply to  Challenger

Aye, or its being done on a ‘time share’ basis if we’re struggling, maybe a US boat filling at at times…. ?????

All speculation and I’m not reading to much into it. Just noticed the lack of one on the list. It would be a bold move to deploy a carrier group without one right enough.

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

Yeah! I mean you can get away without a SSN if it’s a 2-3 ship group deploying to The Med but not when it’s the jewel in the RN crown heading into first Iran and then China’s backyard.

Could well be more flexible to have various British and if needed USN boats attaching themselves to the carrier-group as it sails through their zones of operations. We just won’t know about it!

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
5 months ago

She’s a very beamy girl – reckon she can fit through the Panama canal? Wondering about their return journey is all; it would be nice to see her in Pearl Harbor, the Anglo Carribbean, Bermuda etc on her way back east

Patrick
Patrick
5 months ago

It would be good to see the CBG go south and swing by the Falklands. They could still stop in the Carribean for a few welcome days on their way home.

4th watch
4th watch
5 months ago
Reply to  Patrick

Agreed, why let a good opportunity go to waste!

Walguy
Walguy
5 months ago

Cannot help but wonder why the Dutch vessel HMNLS Evertson will not be sailing with the CSG as previously scheduled. The reason given seems rather lame to me. Given that the EU have just agreed a trade deal with China and that Biden now holds Presidency in the States. What do others think here?

Sean
Sean
5 months ago
Reply to  Walguy

I think the reason given here, that’s it’s due to delays encountered in upgrade work aboard the Evertson is almost certainly the reason. It’s not as though delays in upgrade work in navel ships is that uncommon.
The alternative unfounded speculation concerning trade deals and Biden sounds like a conspiracy theory. No evidence, and totally disconnected from other facts such as QE will be carrying USMC F35Bs.

Sean
Sean
5 months ago
Reply to  Walguy

The reason here, that the Evertson is experiencing a delay in its upgrade programme sounds the most probable reason. These things seem common with naval ships.
Wild speculation about trade deals and Biden sounds like a conspiracy theory. It has no factual basis and indeed runs contrary to known facts, such as the USMC F35Bs that will be aboard QE.

Walguy
Walguy
5 months ago
Reply to  Sean

Thank you for taking your time to comment Sean. Didn’t intend the piece to come across as some sort of conspiracy theory. The Evertsen just suddenly disappeared from the picture without comment from MOD initially and then in conjunction with apparent delay for reason and other events, just made me question the late withdrawal by the Dutch Navy. I am not current with electronic technology upgrades or issues for modern warships and the timescales involved but do understand that they can be time consuming and intricate. So again thank you for taking time to reply.

Cymbeline
Cymbeline
5 months ago

China has already lost 1 international judgement in 2016 in the international tribunal in The Hague. so if you think they would listen to any other body/court then you are wrong, the prize is too great for them to just walk away from. This other article from the NYT is pretty descriptive. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/20/world/asia/south-china-sea-navy.html As for us being there, I believe we have to support are other partners who also stand up to China by commiting to FON patrols, not just the USA but Austrailia as well. If we were to turn our backs on them China would see this as… Read more »

Jeremy
Jeremy
5 months ago

The UN is not the right organisation to sort this matter. China has already acceded to UNCLOS and clearly shows no regard for it whatsoever. The priority for the new US administration needs to be galvanising more concrete regional opposition of the claimant states to the South China Sea to China, such as through ASEAN and other regional forums. Because China is aware of the asymmetry of power in the region it needs to be faced with far more unified regional opposition backed by the US in more ways than just FONOP’s. This said, Britain sending a carrier group is… Read more »

Cymbeline
Cymbeline
5 months ago
Reply to  Jeremy

Jeremy, good post and I agree. I dont think the UK government would be as naive as to send in a whole carrier group on a FON, nor do I think the Americans would let us as that would be more about a show of force as opposed to anything else and the CCP would love nothing more, however 1 vesseling peeling off whilst in the region would be inline with other FON’s conducted by us and others inn the past.

JohnN
JohnN
5 months ago

The RAN regularly transits through the SCS, individual ships and task groups:

http://amp.abc.net.au/article/12481514

You lot are more than welcome to join us!

Cheers,

TrevorH
TrevorH
5 months ago
Reply to  JohnN

Correct. And hopefully you will join us in this one.
The reason we have a military is to deter and support allies).
If you do not deter you do what Mr Corbyn would do – surrender.

DJ
DJ
5 months ago
Reply to  JohnN

John

Would the RAN have a Hobart class available (if asked)? It would be relatively short notice for something that everyone else has had years to plan for.

JohnN
JohnN
5 months ago
Reply to  DJ

DJ, I’m sure the powers that be in the RAN and RN would keep each other up to date well ahead of time when a deployment is going to happen in each other’s respective parts of the world. At this stage nothing has been reported or announced as to what RAN assets may, or may not, join up wit the RN carrier task group when it reaches our part of the world. As for the Hobart class DDGs, all three are currently in active service, and very recently (just prior to Christmas) they exercised together off the NSW coast against… Read more »

Chris Jones
Chris Jones
5 months ago

I’ve long thought it would be good for the CSG to visit as many of the British Overseas Territories as possible as part of the deployment, especially the more far flung places like Pitcairns and the less frequently visited like Saint Helena and Tristan Da Cunha.

I know there’d be little military value to the visits but I think they’d a great opportunity for showing the flag and letting the residents know we’re still here and we can still get here if you need us.

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  Chris Jones

But Pitcairn is no bloody far away from anything else, with zero infrastructure and around 50 people who seem pretty ambivalent about remaining ‘British’, unlike the good people of Gibraltar, St Helena and The Falklands etc.

John Hartley
John Hartley
5 months ago
Reply to  Challenger

Pitcairn is slowly losing its population. It may be out of the way, but it is still a little bit of Britain in the Pacific. We may need it in the future. I have been laughed at, when I say we should build an airstrip there. Of course it is too small for a large airport, but a simple airstrip will do. There is an ATR twin prop from Tahiti to an island 300 miles from Pitcairn. We just need a simple Islander or Twinotter connection. Look at the youtube videos of Twinotter flights to Saba in the Dutch Caribbean.… Read more »

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Can maybe see it attracting some adventure tourism, but it would have to be enough to cover the costs.

Strategically i really can’t see any use we’d ever have for a tiny island hundreds of miles from the next in the middle of The Pacific!

4th watch
4th watch
5 months ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Good plan. Do you think there is the geography though. Where are the flyingboats when you need them?

John Hartley
John Hartley
5 months ago
Reply to  4th watch

I think the Pacific surf is too rough for flying boats. It needs to be an airstrip. Watch 3 youtube videos. “World’s shortest runway-Twin Otter STOL at Saba” posted by planehound. That is a 400m runway with sheer drops at each end. For the position & building of the airstrip, I think the Greeks got it right at Kastellorizo. Sam Chui posted a video “The most difficult landing-Greece island hopping”. That is an 800m runway built in the saddle between two hills. They just levelled it up using local earth & boulders. I see at least 3 similar potential sites… Read more »

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
5 months ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Pacific is a pretty calm ocean, you get bad storms but on a normal day its much calmer than say the Atlantic. It used to be during the first half of the 20th century (dont know if still is?) that a ships hull operated primarily in the Pacific would be worn out after 30 years but one of the same class that operated primarily in the Atlantic would be worn out after only 20 years.

Last edited 5 months ago by Watcherzero
John Hartley
John Hartley
5 months ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

I should have been more precise. Not the whole Pacific, but the bit around Pitcairn, has the reputation of relentless rolling waves, that make anchoring offshore for any length of time unpleasant.

Chris Jones
Chris Jones
5 months ago
Reply to  Challenger

True, it is quite literally the middle of nowhere, but presumably if the CSG is doing a full circumnavigation, they’d have to cross the pacific. In so far as I’m aware QE is too big to fit through the Panama Canal, so they’d have to head south to round Cape Horn, so Pitcairn would be ‘on the way’ so to speak. From what I’ve read, much of the ambivalence stems from the prosecution of sexual offences in the 2000s, maybe a goodwill visit from the CSG, with a few hundred strong shore party to help with any local projects could… Read more »

Challenger
Challenger
5 months ago
Reply to  Chris Jones

I haven’t seen anything suggesting the CSG will do a circumnavigation. Aside from lone ships most larger deployments to The Far East have historically come back the same way to get a few more port visits and exercises in. Really can’t imagine the RN taking such major vessels round Cape Horn!

I think the ambivalence was present before all that. Essentially it’s not worth the hassle of asserting their independence, but from what i can see there is almost zero contact and cooperation with London or overt displays of British identity.

Damo
Damo
5 months ago
Reply to  Chris Jones

Pretty nasty was all of that. We did the right thing prosecuting

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Chris Jones
Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago
Reply to  Chris Jones

Of course the fact that the Pitcairn group enjoy a UK full marine environmental reserve designation grants them a status way above their size, which warrants at least the occasional cruise-by, though perhaps not yet by an entire CSG! Though in future maybe even that could change if the Chinese continue to nause legitimate ocean stakeholders. Think how they’re crowding the Galapagos territory and bullying anyone elsewhere who gets in the way of their rapaceousness.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
5 months ago

I make no apology for this OT post!

Kuno finally gets his Dicken medal.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0V43VcTwfzo

Rob
Rob
5 months ago

One brave pooch. Really man’s best friend. I’d love it if the MOD did the right thing and awarded and funded the meddle rather than the PDSA.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago

Appears from the report that Evertsen is heading east, but steering clear of SCS.

Paul42
Paul42
5 months ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

What exactly is going on with this? The Dutch have been trumpeting for sometime about how they were providing an escort for QE and then they back out?

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

Can’t answer that, but it looks to have taken the RNN by surprise, and added in a good pinch of professional embarrassment to boot, I’d hazard. If Evertsen’s main objective is now Jakarta, even if she accompanies the CGS she’ll bow out just before her escort abilities would have been of most value from a practical exercise viewpoint. I have no wish to over egg it, and it may only be coincidence that the EU announce a major investment with China and the RNN now are not evidently to fulfil a complete escort role, but it does raise eyebrows. It… Read more »

Gareth
Gareth
5 months ago

Interesting to see what happens when the taskforce transits the Suez Canal and Bab-al Mandeeb. Almost feel that a couple of MCMVs should accompany the force for that part of the journey, and I’m quite sure the Iranian backed Houthis in the Yemen would be keen to hurt the taskforceif they could. The SCS might prove the least risky part of the deployment East of Suez (besides the Pacific of course).

Last edited 5 months ago by Gareth
Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

The Force Protection measures are well rehearsed for BAM transits. Same goes for the Gulf transits.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
5 months ago

“would it not be preferable to sit down at a ‘virtual table’ and come to a civilised and sensible arrangement with them?” Yes, except they won’t withdraw their claims. “It is rather sad to see little Britain, a virtual flea, aggravate the massive elephant that is China in a vain demonstration of post imperial sabre rattling heavily depending on others to achieve this futile gesture?” Ah, the imperial obsession again. Irrelevant when other “fleas” like Japan Australia France also conduct FON patrols alongside those of the US. It is only sad in your murky tunnel vision mind. Not for the… Read more »

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago

Even the way he types and talks confirms he has never served, sooooooo incorrect lingo and terminology. That’s one of the problems Walts never understand, that they try to talk the talk but can never quite do it. And mate you are more sensible than this, why even try to educate him, it’s better just to watch him eat crayons.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Stolen glory….very pathetic and weak.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

And rank structure knowledge still wrong…. confirmation of stolen glory.

RobW
RobW
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

“chocolate soldier” really? Bit of casual racism there Harold. True colours being shown.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Computer glitch I take it troll.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Ahh the the “Wee Corporal” jibe.
Troll 101 page 8.
Trying to subliminally associate Wee (read as little) Corporal with the nickname given to Hitler by Bismarck.

Just saying….

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Mate and don’t forget the “untermenschen” jibe. Sad troll, but very easy to deal with. Hopefully we can now get back to chatting about military matters.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago

So the Walt is scared, about right. Quite happy to let bullies bully as long as your ok. Maybe the RN could call on your vast ASW experiences, on a type 14? Good job you remembered that you served eh……mmmmmmmm…but need to work on your SSN/SSBN identification and capability skills old boy.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Walt…

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

And your lack of knowledge in the rank system has just again confirmed your Walt status.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

W..A..L..T

Steve R
Steve R
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Have you progressed from living with your mum?

Thought not.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Steve R

Steve hang on I will wake her up and ask her for you……”pssssst Mrs Harold, wake up….heres some wet wipes, clean up and we need to chat about your very old transvestite son”……

john melling
john melling
5 months ago

Is there any way we can stop Harold from commenting at all!
He is just such a pointless human being!

Whether China likes it or not we are heading through…
Perhaps a stopover in Taiwan to stoke the fire ;P

Pete
Pete
5 months ago
Reply to  john melling

Stop responding too him. Responding is his food source.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Pete

But it brightens up my day reading people laying waste to his puerile and ill informed attempts at rational comment!

Pete
Pete
5 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
5 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Exactly! Otherwise he is free to continue unimpeded with his propaganda.

This way he is wasting HIS time talking to others.

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Pete

But after a while Pete he goes around in circles, gets very angry and goes into crayon eating stomping feet mode, which is there for all of us to see, and while I have a little time on my hands I will draw out this troll side and at the same time we all watch him unable to answer direct questions and show his absolute lack of knowldege. Cheers mate

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

As Corporal “Jonsey” Jones was fond of saying…. “They don’t like It up ’em! “

Airborne
Airborne
5 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Ah Corporal…the rank Harold thinks you start at! As an aside the old series of Dads Army now has a viewers warning on it, because it has phrases that the modern woke generation wouldn’t like….fuzzy wuzzys and frogs. Crazy but expected I suppose.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
5 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

lol

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
5 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

I see that Harold, 1,2 and 3 has been deleted …. lol. Another victim of his own demise here……..you got to love this site !

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
5 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Yes, but this time it’s justified.

Frank62
Frank62
5 months ago
Reply to  john melling

If nobody took his bait he’d give up or simply be a lone voice. He’s entitled to his opinion but that is only magnified by people Responding. I chose to ignore & scroll past every one of his posts.

DJ
DJ
5 months ago

Harold Signing any agreement with Xi is not far removed from signing one with Hitler. Even trade deals are a waste of time. There is no separation of powers in PRC. The government can do what ever it wants & it is a one party system. The courts are just another arm of the government. Anything internationally it disagrees with, it ignores, while insisting that anything it does agree with is followed to the letter. President for life Xi insists upon it. In many ways, I think China is pushing for a war in SCS. They are not looking for… Read more »

Trevor W Hogg
Trevor W Hogg
5 months ago
Reply to  DJ

Has anybody seen the news recently that the Chinese Coast Guard have been given permission to Open Fire on vessels straying into the SCG without their consent.

Jacko
Jacko
5 months ago

Meanwhile the group is an escort short. Any chance of someone else filling the gap?

Paul T
Paul T
5 months ago
Reply to  Jacko

The Indian Navy could be Well Placed to Provide one.

Frank62
Frank62
5 months ago
Reply to  Jacko

Plenty of interested parties out there, Japan, S Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia, India etc & another USN. But the biggest mistake of all has been running down our navy so far that we can’t do the job ourselves for lack of capacity & inadequate fit out on what we have. Plus the huge mistake for allowing PRC to”annex” the SCS with their Island base building grab. The UN could do much more as we saw in the Korean war it acted despite both the USSR & China opposing, but many local nations are both bullied into submission & overly dependent… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Frank62
Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 months ago
Reply to  Jacko

How are they an escort short. 2 x 45s and 2 x 23s plus a sub. Anything else that joins in is a bonus. The Sullivans is going to. Ok its an older AB with less capable systems than a 45 but its still going.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
5 months ago

If you could see your way to upgrading us to a mouse, dear H, we could then cause the Chinese elephant some serious palpitations.
Regards

Dwight Osorio Nacaytuna
Dwight Osorio Nacaytuna
4 months ago

Glad to know the carrier will be in the Southeast Asia Sea and be able to help us in the Philippines re-claim our islets from Communist Party of China.