HMS Diamond is en route to join Operation Kipion, the UK’s maritime presence in the Gulf and the Indian Ocean, the Defence Secretary has announced.

According to a statement:

“As a powerful demonstration of the UK’s commitment to regional security, the Type 45 Destroyer will bolster the UK’s naval presence in the Gulf and work to deter escalations from malign and hostile actors who seek to disrupt maritime security. The Type 45 destroyer will conduct operations to ensure freedom of navigation in the region, reassure merchant vessels and ensure the safe flow of trade. She will join HMS Lancasterwhich deployed to the region last year, as well as three mine hunters and a Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) support ship.”

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps said:

“Recent events have proven how critical the Middle East remains to global security and stability. From joint efforts to deter escalation, following the onset of the renewed conflict in Israel and Gaza, to now the unlawful and brazen seizure of MV Galaxy Leader by the Houthis in the Red Sea – it is critical that the UK bolsters our presence in the region, to keep Britain and our interests safe from a more volatile and contested world.

Today’s deployment will strengthen the Royal Navy’s patrols, help to keep critical trade routes open and prove that our commitment to regional security not only endures but enhances.”

Her deployment follows increasing concerns over maritime security at narrow sea trade routes worldwide, known as chokepoints. The ship is part of the UK’s commitment to supporting security in the region and the global maritime commons.

Operation Kipion is the UK’s long-standing maritime presence in the Gulf and the Indian Ocean. In addition to HMS Lancaster, a squadron of three mine hunting vessels (HMS BangorHMS Chiddingfold, and HMS Middleton) and a Royal Fleet Auxiliary support ship (RFA Cardigan Bay) are also deployed as part of the operation, helping to keep the vital trade routes of the Middle East open for business.

Royal Navy vessels have been permanently deployed to the region since 1980 and have fallen under Operation Kipion since 2011. Under the command of the UK Maritime Component Command (UKMCC) in Bahrain, they work with allies and partners across the region, including under the Combined Maritime Forces partnership.

The waters of the Gulf are vital routes for merchant shipping, including for tankers carrying much of the UK’s supply of liquefied natural gas. Around 50 large merchant ships each day pass through the Bab-el-Mandeb, connecting the Red Sea to the Gulf of Aden, while around 115 major merchant ships pass through the Strait of Hormuz.

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also previously worked for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Rugger-13
Rugger-13
1 month ago

At least they are sending a T45 that has completed it’s Power Improvement Project (PIP). I hope the Martlet missile is included for the Wildcat onboard.

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Rugger-13

HMS Diamond has not been through the PIP process – the only operational T45 that has is HMS Dauntless,she is currently on here way home from the Caribbean.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

Exactly. Presumably infeasible to perform a rapid maintenance turn/period on the only PIP equipped DDG and dispatch w/ an alternate crew to one of warmest (both physically and metaphorically) areas on the planet? Alternatively, incentivize contractors to rapidly complete PIP conversion of HMS Dragon or (Duncan?)? It doesn’t require much imagination to envision HMS Diamond becoming embroiled in a scenario, she is not currently equipped to handle. 🤔😱

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Dragon and Daring are not far away from returning to duty, Dauntless would have been ideal but after her long deployment might be in need of some R&R time.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

Daring? Thanks, thought that Duncan
may not be the correct citation. Presumed a replacement crew and rapid maintenance turn might be feasible for Dauntless, but Deep (following post) has effectively eliminated that proposition from contention.

Mark B
Mark B
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Diamond was in that sort of area in 2021 wasn’t it and although it had issues they weren’t PIP and they were solved. Perhaps we are making assumptions and the risk of an issue is much less than thought

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

🤞🤞

George
George
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

I’ll second that double finger cross. Hopefully everything will go smoothly and all the VLS and magazines are full to bursting.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  George

And hopefully the AShMs are onboard as they might be useful. And I think the T45s can carry two Wildcats if needed.

Mark B
Mark B
1 month ago
Reply to  George

Yes. Diamond’s crew could have been flown to Gibralter to meet Dauntless if they were worried about warm waters and Diamond used in the Baltic. A confidence in Diamond when there must be options seems interesting.

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

Diamond had a GT let go on CSG21 and had to miss most of it to get it replaced in Italy from memory.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

Exactly – GT’s fail.

She could have carried on with just the other GT and the gen sets but there would have been a single point of failure if the other GT failed as the pre PiP gen sets are not enough for prime mover and hotel load plus weapons…

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark B

Also mitigations have been put in place

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Dockyard work in the UK. Is slow whatever the job. That needs to be addressed and improved on. I question if the right work is getting awarded to the right places

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy reeves

Willing to trade RN maintenance backlog for USN backlog, any/every day of the week. Really, w/ no questions asked, especially re the SSNs. 🤔😉

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Unfortunately we don’t have a spare crew or two languishing around should we need them! Although have to admit it would be nice if we ever did.
Would like to think that contractors are working away at a good pace regardless, but perhaps not. Anything coming out of such a lengthy maintenance period would have to complete a FOST work up prior to proceeding further afield anyway. So it would still take a few months to regenerate this capability.
Oh for a larger navy et al.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Patience counseled, the pendulum re Defence expenditures may yet swing in the other direction. Hopefully, at an opportune time in national affairs. It is just conceivable that a replacement W.S. Churchill (version 2.0) will emerge during a time of crisis to lead the UK. 🤞

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Personally, continue to hope for a reincarnation of Eisenhower or Reagan for the US. 🤞😊

klonkie
klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

you have my vote Sir!

George
George
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

I used to think our second Winston was Nigel Farage but now, not so sure. Perhaps one of the former military MPs will up his game and lead.

ChrisLondon
ChrisLondon
1 month ago
Reply to  George

He was always more of a Mosley.

If the next election sees a return to democratic government for the UK we will hopefully see a proper investigation of the Brexit coup and treason charges for those responsible.

Then we will dare you to carry out the military coup you have called for three times in the last five weeks. A civil war might be better for Britain than continuing to allow the extreme right into the military.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

Brexit coup? What’s that then. People voted. Not sure the angle here? Are you saying the votes were not counted correctly? Brexit happened and Britain needs to get on with forging a path in the world. It perhaps has turned out that being in or out of EU makes little difference to economic growth in the short term. Long term we need to wait and see. U.K. hasn’t accelerated away compared to EU countries nor has it collapsed in a heap. For most people nothing has changed. One of the main reasons folks voted was fear of immigration. Take back… Read more »

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

I guess the collapse in business investment since 2016 is not an issue then? Brexit was never going to produce a collapse just a change in growth trajectory which it’s very very clearly demonstrated according to even the British government.

andy a
andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

he is nothing like Mosley and the lefts sudden calling of anyone right of centre as “far right” is ridiculous, you want far rignt then see marie le pen.
I voted against Brexit but unlike some I saw that people voted the way they voted. You know what? the way everyone against Brexit has been such bad losers it makes me think I voted the wrong way.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  andy a

It’s Sunday we have Snow outside so Coffee, Croissant and Porridge (Scots style). So just catching up on some threads and I find comment to be just so quintessentially British. I am a proud Scot, a Unionist and a European and like the vast majority of folks I am slightly left of centre on social issues and slightly right of centre on defence and Law and order. I absolutely get your quandary over Brexit, my head told me to vote against Brexit and try to sort out EU from inside. But then I looked at all the people like Obama… Read more »

ChrisLondon
ChrisLondon
1 month ago
Reply to  andy a

Hello Andy, Re  ‘the lefts sudden calling of anyone right of centre as “far right” is ridiculous,’ Extremists of both the left and right tend to put everyone they disagree with together and ‘other’ them, refusing to see any differences between them. I am on the right wing of the Lib Dems so to the right of about 62% of the country and left of about 32%. I am about where the Torys try to pretend to be when they are serious about winning an election. Momentum types tend to say things like ‘Come on if you are going to… Read more »

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

He doesn’t own reform at all. Check the political party paperwork. You and people like you slandering a party merely because you don’t like them as “far right” is exactly what I mean. Are they they marching on the street demanding camps and racial laws? No. In fact if you look at rioting in the west generally and the damage done it’s in the last ten years those to the far left responsible. I recall no riots from those right of centre. Also I called you nothing and didn’t comment on you in the slightest. I care not what you… Read more »

Andy a
Andy a
30 days ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

That’s news to me but being a director is very far from being the parties leader which he currently isn’t. Also he doesn’t in anyway “own” reform uk. The point was in no way can they be considered far right. Just because you don’t agree with their politics calling them an extremist group really isn’t fair or correct. They are nothing like an extremist group. People should stop being jealous just because what they say chimes better with the working class than what current labour spouts. Also I was a card carrying member of the Lib Dem’s. after studying politics… Read more »

Last edited 30 days ago by Andy a
George
George
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

We will, will we-we comrade Politruk Chris from the Tooting Popular Front.
Please go ahead and try to overturn a democratically conducted referendum. Why don’t you just move to Gibraltar, it will be back in the EU quite soon. Better still move to Russia under Comrade Colonel Vladimir Vladimirovich to see the result of 70 years of failing socialism progressing to communism looks like.

ChrisLondon
ChrisLondon
1 month ago
Reply to  George

Actually George I am on the right wing of the Lib Dems which on current polling puts me to the right of about 62% of the population and to the left of the mainly far right 32%.where you and friends dwell. That you see that as left wing says a lot about how cut off from the country you have spent your life sponging off your sort are. I note you have not denied that in the last five weeks you have on three occasions called for a coup if Labour win the next election? That should cost you your… Read more »

George
George
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

My staunch British political views and moral code of conduct, have not changed much in 40 years. I have news for you comrade and you had better sit down before continuing. During the leaderships of Paddy Ashdown and Charles Kennedy, I was a LibDem member too! Actually stood in local council elections for them. Granted it was just a favour to fill an empty slot but nonetheless I did it twice. I have not changed but the very nature of our once great country has. It is being changed for us without consent. The BREXIT referendum is what happens when… Read more »

Wasp snorter
Wasp snorter
1 month ago
Reply to  ChrisLondon

Brexit coup? I voted against it but it wasn’t a coup, there were lies and wishful arrogant thinking on one side and doom scenarios on the other side, but where was the coup Chris?

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  George

Big Lady with a big sword perhaps ?

Wasp snorter
Wasp snorter
1 month ago
Reply to  George

Nigel Farage a second Winston Churchill? is that a joke, it must be.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Contractors are paid to do a job.

Generally the faster it is done the more profits they make.

The only incentive to go-slow is when it is a time & costs or cost+ contract….hens teeth these days.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Understood, really not certain whether even USN could accomplish that, short of general mobilization for war. 🤔

BigH1979
BigH1979
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Its December….even in the Meditteranean.

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

It’s ludicrous that we are using a T45 for policing, interdiction and humanitarian missions in the Gulf. We were using a Wave class RFA before they were mothballed which makes sense as they have a hangared helicopter which is the vital component for all of those missions. Obviously an OPV would be the best unit but the B2 River’s are all but useless for those missions as they can’t permanently embark a helicopter due to no hangar. We’d have been better building 4 River’s with hangars rather than 5 without.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

My understanding is that we have been asked to reinforce our presence in the region. The USN have been busy defending tankers from Houthi hijackers but also shooting down missiles headed towards Israel and directed at themselves. A T45 is the right ship.

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

My mistake mate. I meant to refer to the use of HMS Dauntless in the Caribbean and not HMS Diamond in the Gulf

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

No worries. Agree your general point about role of OPvs.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

That was a PiP full test out.

Go somewhere very hot and test it hard job.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

Is she still out there or on way home ?

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Its not really policing as there’s potential for escalation with Iran regularly trying to seize vessels.

But I agree on the OPV, we massively over paid for under spec’d hulls because we had an uncompetitive shipbuilding industry at the the time of build the Batch 2s.

Last edited 1 month ago by Expat
SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

My mistake. See posy above. I was referring to HMS Dauntless in the Caribbean but mistyped it as the Gulf

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

Sorry to burst your bubble, but BAe on the Clyde were very efficient at that point the T45’s were being delivered on time and below budget (check the delivery schedules for the last 3). They were on track to deliver No 7 and 8 on the Drum beat and then roll that efficiency straight over into the T26. Then HMG cancelled no 7 & 8, which left BAe with zero work for 3 to 4 years. But due the terms of business agreement they had a contractual obligation to ensure continuity of production, revenue stream and workload to BAe. They… Read more »

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Does the report include anything about epoxy resin in the build?

Ps. Don’t bite. 🙂

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Nope because as it pre dates the actual builds, it was commissioned by MOD to investigate the optimum way to build the RN requirement to replace 12 T42 AAW Destroyers with 12 T45’s. I used to get these via my employment but it is a freely available report (try eBay) I suggest you read it (the RAND one on UK Nuclear subs is simply brilliant) It sets out the hows and why’s as to how to deliver RN ships on time and at a decent cost. As for epoxy resin well that depends on where and how you use it… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Its always good to get things of your chest. By the way, totally agree with your comments fella, totally.👍

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Thanks for that ! Never served in the forces but involved here in Derby on bits that if they were wrong people that did, possibly wouldn’t come home. From Apprentice to retirement I never saw anyone not try 100% to do it right, same when we visited Barrow. So I do get slightly peeved when people who never had any part of it just mouth off. My late uncle was one of the very first RR engineers involved with what later became RR&A. I asked him why put places like this in a Town ? The answer was “because if… Read more »

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Well in 2016 that wasn’t John Parkers opinion after looking at various yards he concluded that yards with commercial contracts were more productive, because they had to compete for those contracts. There was a lack of ownership as the defence contracts didn’t put the yards unders any commercial pressure. Anyone who thinks you’re going to get a great deal when you only have one option is bonkers, would you go into a car dealer and announce I’m only buying from you at not considering any other options…. your pznts are going to round your ankles in no time. Even if… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

Yep in 2016 the situation was pretty well moribund it was BAe or ……… He was 100% correct in his analysis and apart from the implementation of the plan, it seems that MOD listened. BAe were in a monopoly position and that has some advantages, but it also means that they were incredible cautious with investment. I can’t blame them for that attitude because the Governments since 2000 had messed around or completely screwed up every project they issued. Allowing a 7 year production gap between Vanguard and Astutes. BAe workforce at Barrow reduced from 12k to @3K then had… Read more »

Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Dauntless was in the Caribbean for warm water testing after PIP.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Dauntless needed to deploy somewhere hot post-PIP to test for any remaining engine issues, and better somewhere quieter than Hormuz. The West Indies OPV, HMS Medway, was needed to sub in the Falklands for HMS Forth, which was undergoing a refit. So two birds with one stone.

The B2 Rivers can host helicopters for weeks at a time, even without a hangar, but we don’t have enough Wildcats to deploy to the OPVs. All the hangars in the world won’t change that.

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Thanks for the reply on why Dauntless was in the Caribbean. If ships can deploy helicopters without hangars why did we buy hangers for the Bays? Everything I’ve read and a conversation with an Army Air Corps Captain suggests that they have next to no use for their Wildcats. As he said, if you want to attack something send an Apache and if you want to move something ask the RAF for a Puma or Chinook. Wildcat is second best for everything other than liaison for which it’s too expensive. So if we’d built 4 River’s with hangers then we… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Army getting smaller again 🙄 🇬🇧

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Not if it was up to me. I’d transfer Chinooks and Pumas to the Army Air Corps and the F35’s and P8’s to the Navy. The US military is structured that way.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Sounds good to me, but I bet the RAF would press to take Apaches off the army in some weird sort of ‘deal’.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Don’t you dare start that bloody argument all over again 😂

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

As an army man and end user, where do you stand on this mate? Move the RAF SHF to the AAC or leave alone?

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Well, yes (sort of). Of course, the F-35As are USAF’s, F-35Bs are USMC’s, and F-35Cs are USN’s. (Our version of spreading the wealth to include all the heirs. Depending upon your philosophical outlook, US component arms either deserve praise for sponsoring the first mass-produced Gen 5 fighter, or condemnation for the very same act (i.e., ye olde Block 4 cluster…)). Perhaps both, alternatively or simultaneously. 🤔😊😱🤯☹️😉

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

That was mooted in 1995 amongst the media, as a sort of modern Royal Flying Corps.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

AAC lost its fixed wing aircraft to the RAF some years ago, who promptly retired them! AAC gets only 50 Apache AH-64E to replace 67 D modela. Yes – shrinkage always happens.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

I’m not saying it’s not better to have a hangar, just it doesn’t make any real difference in this case. There’s a difference between deploying helicopters for a few weeks in a benign area and for an eight month potentially hostile deployment. Having a hangar increases flexibility.

I tend to agree that the Wilcats are useless for the Army as specced. Hopefully they are getting a data link and a radar and will cease to be quite so useless. You may be right that the Navy could make better use of them.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Hmmne gave you tried working on sensitive electronics with a bit of rain and wind……

Things break…..they need fixing…

Jon
Jon
1 month ago

The OPVs aren’t warships. If they can’t fix a helicopter’s system on board ship while on the move, they can’t. If they can fly it safely to a nearby friendly country, they can rent some hangar space and fix it there. If they need to wait until the next time the ship makes port, then they do. The OPVs swap crews around every few weeks and are constantly making port stops. For constabulary and presence operations an outage of the helicopter isn’t critical, and an 80% solution would still be useful. Better to have it most of the time than… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Would make sense for army Wildcats to be armed ,back up Apache ,or to look after them selfs .If Reconnaissance roll expect to come under fire with 🤔

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Wildcat in army service has the following roles: recce, battlefield utility (liaison and carrying teams of 5-6 men) , search and rescue and anti-surface warfare roles (granted that is not especially credible if only a pintle-mounted GPMG is fitted). Plus working with Apaches as a pair with the Wildcat hunting for targets for the Apache etc.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Mate you’re on the ball with most things but we have to admit the wildcat is a jack of all trades but certainly a master of none! It was forced on the AAC as an effort to keep numbers and Sqn plates active! However personally I do think having a modern decent all purpose light utility platform is essential to the Army and now we have it, no matter how “grey” its tasks are, we need it! As recce for the Apache Sqns, that kept its introduction to service alive! Anyway, let’s talk tanks…you love them …😂👍!

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

I agree with you. The role(s) as described by the manufacturer (and which I covered off) need to be filled – I think that was all I was saying – but the Wildcat lacks specialised kit to do any of them to perfection. It needs more firepower than a single door-mounted Gimpy and perhaps air to surface missiles to augment the small numbers of Apache – the naval version gets this so why not the armyb issue version? …and it needs better recce kit – such as a radar and EOIR cameras like the naval version, and secure comms/data link.… Read more »

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Don’t you think a recce helicopter without radar or datalink is a bit last century?

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Yes, I do. I hope I wasn’t saying that the army Wildcat was the best utility helo in the world – just that it does have roles to fill.

The naval Wildcat has all the bells and whistles (multifunction Seaspray radar, air to surface missiles, data link) – the army version has none – it is a flying small truck with a Gimpy.

If the army version was as well specced as the naval version, I could add to my comment that it was a good piece of kit.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

They aren’t salt water suitable !

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Mate most people on the Army who have any experience of light utility helicopters know the Army wildcats are a waste of time and have no real utility. Are they there for AT with missiles, like the lynx? Nope! Are they there for dropping off Milan teams (old days now Jav) teams? Nope! Are they there to do anything but ensure the AAC keep some numbers and Sqn templates, yes! However that is actually a good thing and something which I think the AAC head sheds have been smart about, as once Sqn names are gone, numbers are reduced it’s… Read more »

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

The wildcat for the army should have been stripped of the navy stuff crash seats removed so basically after the cockpit it’s an empty box. Gets seats that can be put in and out.
If some of the navy sensors are useful keep them and fit what’s good for the army.
Get the hard points for TOW/hellfire/marlet/rockets/gun pods or whatever they like.
So now they can move an actual full team and so useful roles.
Currently wildcat is too over priced for watching battle space and moving light loads. Drones can do the watching

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  Rugger-13

The weather will be cooling so not likely to be an issue.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Rugger-13

Sounds positive and could be very useful in the near term. “The United Kingdom is to arm its fleet of Boeing P-8A Poseidon MRA1 maritime multimission aircraft (MMA) with the domestically developed Sting Ray torpedo. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced the decision on 30 November, saying the British-built Sting Ray will be used alongside the US-built Mk 54 torpedo that was delivered as part of the US government’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS) package. “The programme to integrate Sting Ray Mod 1 onto Poseidon is now underway,” the MoD said. According to the ministry, the decision capitalises on investment already… Read more »

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

That is great news.stingray is supposedly a better torpedo.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

Indeed. I remember this in-depth look posted by Navy Lookout at the time.

My reply may take a while as everything I post has to be approved.

LINK

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Jim
Jim
1 month ago

Probably time to pull the B2 rivers in the indo pacific back as well and send them to Bahrain. Operating Wildcat off them they should be very useful for presence missions to deter Iran and let the T45 sit in the Red Sea where she can intercept missiles form Yemen.

FieldLander
FieldLander
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Other than a flag and a helicopter, what will they bring to the Gulf?

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  FieldLander

What else do you need to escort a tanker? What does a type 23 bring to the gulf?

FieldLander
FieldLander
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

You can escort the tanker with a ferry. The T23 can defend itself and the tanker. How does the OPV do that?

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Cannot agree with the B2s being pulled into the Middle East, the tension is so high it’s no place for a RN constabulary vessel.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Precisely, how a River can defend itself to drones and SSM’s. it will be already a serious issue for T45.

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

Missile defense an issue for a T45? I assume you’re referring to the situation being risky, because I’d hope a T45, being a ship with an excellent AA capability, to be just peachy with a bunch of ASMs being slung around

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Agree

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

What do you think the minesweepers are doing? Sitting in port?

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

The mine sweeper are doing a very specific job that no other vessel can do..it’s risk vs benfits…..they have to be there and run that risk ( it’s the same with rivet joint) the B2 should not be there as it’s not designed to be there and does not add a specific requires capability …always risk vs benefit…using constabulary vessels in higher risk environments in place of proper warships is just plan wrong on a number of ground…. 1) why do you need to have your constabulary vessel practice war fighting in a potential theatre of war..it’s not a war… Read more »

SamWise
SamWise
1 month ago

Do any of the type 45s have Naval Strike Missile?

Richard Beedall
Richard Beedall
1 month ago

Having once worked at ASU SWA/Naval Support Activity Bahrain, I think we can safely assume that the US made a formal request for the UK to help out the over-stretched Fifth Fleet. As well as the Iranian’s they are having to keep on eye on the six(!) Chinese PLAN ships in the Gulf. I would also be fairly confident that the French received a similar request, and they have a frigate/destroyer heading to the Gulf, possibly from their small Indian Ocean Squadron.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago

Hi Richard,

Just goes to show how thin the West’s naval forces have become over the last 30 to 40 years. It is now getting to the point where we are all too easily over stretched.

We sooooo need to recapitalise the fleet and indeed the rest of the services.

Cheers CR

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Realistically this isn’t being over stretched, it’s poor management of the resources we do have. We have multiple of the escorts in near perm Dock duty. We then have what is left mainly doing PR jobs for newspaper stories. If needed we could pull them off that and send them to do what they were designed to do. No real point expanding the fleet if we can’t crew and maintain the ones we do have at a decent readiness level. This is however just a token deployment, one ship isn’t going to do much. If we were serious about it… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve
Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Kent is in Canada, Lancaster in the Gulf, Diamond and Duncan in the med, Dauntless in the Atlantic, Northumberland on TAPS off Scotland, Somerset in Norway, Richmond in Sweden about to go on this Baltic deployment, alongside another ships presumably either Iron Duke or Portland, with the other being on FRE.
Every single other escort is in or just come out of PIP or LIFEX, excluding Westminster in which there’s no point to LIFEX.

The fleet is clearly being overstretched.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  Louis

Mate overstretched but as I’ve mentioned prior how the feck do the RN do it? You have to give them a pat on the back for the job they are doing despite the numbers and ongoing long term engineering clusters! Well done to the planners and people!

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

A lot of the issue is the lack of commitment from other NATO+ members. The UK will soon have 6 warships in the gulf. If others put in a bit of commitment we could easily have over 20 NATO+ warships there. The vast majority of tanker exports are going to China, India, Japan Singapore and South Korea. All have more ships than us but continue to free ride on the US and UK keeping maritime sea lanes open.

Barry Larking
Barry Larking
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Agreed Jim. How many get their oil and do trade through these waters?

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Asian nations do send their Naval assets to the Gulf and have done for ages 🤔.

Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

15-30 British flagged Tankers pass through the strait of Hormuz each day. Add in British owned ships it’ll be even higher.

Britain has the largest Merchant Navy out of any relevant nation (I.e. not including Liberia etc.)

An IOM owned ship was hijacked, a British owned ship was rescued by the Americans, all recently.

The tanker situation with Iran a few years back exposed what was already abundantly clear, the Royal Navy cannot protect British shipping.

To have just one escort permanently based in the Gulf is a complete joke, if any nation is free riding, it’ll be us.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Louis

Greece is bigger.

Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

I’m terms of ship owning yes, not in terms of flags. A lot of sources online count Bermuda and others separately from the UK, but of course any ship of the Red Ensign group is British.

Nick C
Nick C
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Well it will certainly muck up quite a lot of Christmas arrangements. At least it will keep Gunbuster busy with another ship to maintain!

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

The US Navy is thin due to appalling investment decisions driven by the idiot Rumsfeld’s obsession with technology which saw billions squandered on Zumwalt destroyers which have no mission and the replacement of frigates with LCS. The LCS have appalling availability due engine issues and have been assessed as too underarmed to be used in high threat situations. The USN is putting some of this right with the Constellation class but in the meantime is struggling with fleet numbers impacted by the appalling decisions of Bush and Rumsfeld.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Yeh, LCS was definately a blind alley and it will take the USN sometime to recover – sadly.

I read somewhere that the Zumwalt class had to avoid really heavy weather, I think it might have been a Congressional report – although I cannot be sure now. I assumed at the time it was due to the very marked tumble home on the hull (stealth feature) causing the vessel to ship more than usual quantities of green water in heavy seas. That’s over optimisation for you.

Cheers CR

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Surely you jest, good sir?!? Really?!? Never read any article re that issue, although reams re weaps. 😱

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Rumsfeld followed Admirals desire to be “relevant” when only pirates and simplified terrorists villains were the OPFOR. He was wrong to support them, but we need to understand the problem started within military.

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

I stand to be corrected Alex but everything I’ve seen suggests it was the other way around. After Rumsfeld cancelled several projects because they didn’t represent a generational technology leap from the kit that they were replacing, service chiefs got the message that the only way to get new projects funded was for them to fully satisfy Rumsfeld’s obsession with technology.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Ah yes, the Hon. Donald Rumsfeld, SECDEF, and author of such inimitable quotes as “You go to war w/ the Army you have…,” and, the “transformed Army,” (meaning, of course, doing more w/ fewer personnel). The very same leader who not only ignored the sage counsel of Gen. Eric Shinseki, Army CoS, who had estimated that several hundred thousand troops would be needed for the successful occupation of Iraq, vice the 75K actually allocated, but also publicly berated and belittled Gen. Shinseki for providing his best professional military counsel. It is just possible that there may be some lingering resentment… Read more »

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

I disagree with that statement.

Grab your tinfoil.

USN need to ditch the FREMMs and buy T26 – the commonwealth frigate.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Well you may think that, but I couldn’t possibly comment. They have gone for FREMM which is a perfectly decent and well proven design.
However they then loaded it with so much kit they have had redesign and expand every dimension. Plus as they haven’t ever operated that type of propulsion they insist on a land based test environment. Despite it working perfectly well in Italian service.
And to cap it all decide to hand the build to the same muppets that churn out LCS1’s that can’t be delivered as they don’t actually work.

What can possibly go wrong ?

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

I really appreciate your levity.

Great reply.

Unfortunately, your other reply is worthy of Jonathan – take a while to dissect and reply.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Argh…USN can’t send it down the fairway, even after taking a mulligan?!? Argh!!! 😱

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Mmm 2 People separated by a common language but just in case you are from Loussiana.

Parlez-vous Anglais ? qu’est-ce que un “Mulligan” ?

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

You remember when you were six playing a game, how if you got something wrong, you’d ask to “take it back”? Otherwise respectable adult Americans golfers have a name for it beyond “backsies”.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Oh so a Golfing expression for Oops I mucked up, so can I try again ! And here was me thinking that was so they learn to get it right the next time.
Zumwalt (Massive expensive boo-boo).
LCS1 (Smaller less expensive but rather plentiful Boo Boo).
Learning point buy a perfectly decent OTS frigate design and muck about with it. (Expensive and embarrassing Boo-Boo when all your best friends turn up with better Toys).

Oh and it’s rot ugly as well ☹️

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Many thanks for serving as an interpreter! 🤔👍😁 Really had no idea the expression could be misinterpreted. Must add it to the list…

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

We sooooo need to recapitalise the fleet.

I think its more like to go the other way tbh, the army will likely benefit though.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

You might be right, but I think we need to secure our sea lanes (within the context of NATO) so I would view that as a misstep. I wouldn’t have any objections to see all the services recapitalised but not at the expense of expanding the fleet. Being and island nation and situated where we are, we need to make a proper contribution to securing our sea lanes. That is as true now as it was in two world wars.

Cheers CR

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

The thing is if we’re talking about sea lanes within the context of NATO most forget, even, politicians, that a rather large NATO member has a Pacific coast and sea lanes that require the entire coast of Central and South Ameria to be secured. Unless of course we’re going to say each NATO country looks after its own bits. But that not really the point of NATO

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

NATO only covers the Euro-Atlantic area.

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

So an attack.on Alaska or Americas Pacific coast or Islands would not trigger a NATO response? So Russia could attack America from the West and we would do nothing? We’d only get involve in fight if Russia decide to attack America from the East? If Russia hit tge Panama canal on the Pacific Coast the started to together US ship transiting South NATO would do nothing?

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Expat

I used the term ‘Euro-Atlantic’ as shorthand because it is in common use to describe the NATO area of interest, as that is where a hostile power is most likely to create an incident and where the ensuing war would be most likely fought.

But of course the USA is in NATO and Article 5 would apply if the US was attacked, from any direction. In fact the only time ever that Article 5 has been called was because the US was attacked (9/11).

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Absolutely 100% right 👍

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

No! No! No! Get with the programme.

Should we not be able to fully furnished a CSG with escorts, our allies always will.

Now. Go over to the naughty step!

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

🤗

Richard Beedall
Richard Beedall
1 month ago

And no doubt the French ship will show up flying the flag of a Rear-Admiral! They like to have the most senior [Western] naval officer at meetings and conferences, unless COMFIFTHFLT himself is present.

Tullzter
Tullzter
1 month ago

French Frigate is already in the Gulf

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

Those MCM Mother vessels are needed. That Bay being used like that seems such a waste.

Jim
Jim
1 month ago

Does seem like the kind of job that could easily be done by a converted commercial vessel.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Like Stirling Castle? There are more planned, apparently.

Coll
Coll
1 month ago

Isn’t there 3 planned?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Coll

Yes, 3 more for a class of 4 I believe.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

That’s good news to hear.

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago

In addition to the commercial vessels, I’d like to see us convert the B2 River’s into MCM mother ships. They are a similar size to the Dutch/Belgian ships being built for this purpose and it would give them an actual useful military role to justify the crew and operating costs that they consume.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

The problem is we are in the transition from the old traditional MCM/MCMV way of MCM to the new. Stirling Castle is trialing away at present and I believe 1 drone boat and her toolkit are actually in the Gulf being trialed from that Bay mother ship (Cardigan Bay I think). A T23 and a T45 is a pretty potent combination and covers most of the bases. I actually like the idea of just letting Stirling Castle carry out her trials and if she can do 80% of what a purpose built design can do and is cheaper then buy… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Which is why I want OTS Blackhawks!
Rather than 20 eye wateringly expensive Italian Westland helis in half the numbers needed.
There must be a balance between quality, quantity, and home built industrial interests.
Agree with your thoughts on Stirling, I’d not buy a purpose built at all.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago

Why eye watering expensive?!
Btw Poland after the deal last year already received first 2 AW 149, armed ones with pylons to launch long range Hellfire missiles.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

62 Wildcat were over a billion I believe. The precedent is not good. The AW offering will be chosen due to politics, local jobs, and MPs demands, not what the military might actually want.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

Odd how the USAF buy the AW139m rather than a Blackhawk version. Or maybe we just decide to gold plate every basic design and then order inadequate numbers.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

I thought they had kicked the entire project down the pitch.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

I understand the idiot Shapps is actually looking at cutting Chinooks in return for more cash for FMH, by cancelling the proposed buy of .14 ER Chinook which are to replace older examples. 🙄

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

Well that sounds stupid so perfectly possible given his Track record. I actually don’t understand the FMH project as a concept or why it is seen as such a high priority. If all we want is a modern utility support helicopter which isn’t going to be used in combat to replace Puma etc well there are multiple alternatives. This is your field so do we actually need a New Project ? I don’t understand why anyone can think using a Wildcat as a Recce for Apaches is a seriously good idea ? Seems to me (just remember this isn’t my… Read more »

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

I second that merlin update. Really there is scope for quite a few merlin orders. Extra ones for the marines, 12 minimum. Another 12 for the navy. The marines especially are to be spread around in small teams and they move by boat or helicopter. The medium helicopter really needs ordered soon. I would prefer the AW as it’s gaining orders. Without the numbers/price/capabilities info it’s hard to make an informed choice. I would say get the cheapest aircraft so more airframes can be bought but I don’t see that happening. It will be a fixed number of airframes regardless… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

We defo need a medium heli as Chinook not ideal for all tasks, though the Chinook is the main asset and so bloody useful so I was dismayed reading that the new 14 may get chopped. Though my cynical side will always see ministers prioritising UK industry and their fat cat friends rather than actual military need. Wildcat was another very expensive option just so we could keep Yeovil jobs. 34 in the army….34, replacing 150 plus Gazelle and Lynx. Watchkeeper also but how useful that is unsure. Wildcat very good for the RN but unsure of its usefulness for… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago

M8 I actually agree with Monkey Spanner, if they can be stripped out and have some use then JFDI. Interestingly try doing a search on RN FOST support Helicopter replacement for the Dauphin which they use at present.
Looks like they are opting for 2 AW139’s.🤔

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Agree more Merlin are needed. I actually tank it greater than more F35 at present for the RN.
Should be noted though that Merlin is again too big to be a Puma replacement.

Yep, well aware of FOSTs 2 Dauphin, operated them for some time.

farouk
farouk
1 month ago

I wonder what the Uk will send when Venezuela kicks off: Brazilian Army on High Alert Amid Potential Venezuelan Invasion of Guyana In a stunning development, the Brazilian Army has activated an emergency mobilization in response to intelligence indicating a potential invasion of Guyana by Venezuela. The intelligence suggests that Venezuelan troops might transit through Brazil, putting the nation’s sovereignty and security at risk.The mobilization includes the deployment of 16 multitasking armored vehicles (VBMT) from the 5th army division to Boa Vista. The army has also mobilized Leopard tanks to increase their defensive capabilities. This move is a clear indication… Read more »

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Seem to remember Guyana voting for independence. This was a big issue for us in 1890 but not our problem today.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Grenada MK2.

Ron
Ron
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Yeep 1895. The US got involved under the Monroe Doctrine and the concept of Manifest Destiny or the Americas for the Americans. So with the US siding with a South American nation (Venezuela) against an European Imperial nation Uk the US hoped to gain favour in South America. Well it is no longer a UK problem.

However, I do wonder if this situation is being driven by Russia? As if I remember correctly Venezuela and Russia are on good trading, military terms and their political views towards the USA.

Nick C
Nick C
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

I hadn’t seen this, can you give a link or two please. It almost sounds like Iraq/Kuwait in 1990.

farouk
farouk
1 month ago
Reply to  Nick C

Nick wrote:
“” can you give a link or two please. “”

Google:
Brazil increases northern border military presence amid Venezuela-Guyana spat -ministry
Rumors of Venezuela Invasion Plans Put Oil-Rich Guyana on Edge
US Defense officials to visit Guyana amid Venezuela row: Guyanese VP
With patriotic reggaeton and videos, Venezuela’s government fans territorial dispute with Guyana
The latter is most interesting

Nick C
Nick C
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Thank you, this will be part of my evening reading!!

Smickers
Smickers
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Thankyou Farouk again for enlightening me The UK press have been lacking again
There is a UK OPV nearby HMS Medway recently docked in Recife on her way back to the Caribbean Not sure with her popgun what use apart from presence and support to an old friend and there are a lot of Guyanese in the UK

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Oh wonderful, as if the US is not already experiencing sufficient mass migration from Venezuela! 😱 Another day, another potential crisis requiring a US response…☹️

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Considering the US has been messing around with their political system and generally destabilising latam for decades, I can’t really feel sorry for them that they are being impacted by it.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Really!? so you follow the Marxist route that all that happens if result of USA?

Venezuelan regime that have being intimidating and when necessary murdering opposition and picking wars with Colombia and now Guyana due to outrageous socialist mismanagement?.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  AlexS

It’s factually accurate and easily provable that the US has messed up the region. Clearly its not all their fault, but they have to take some accountability/ responsibility for the mess they helped cause. Who knows what mess or otherwise the region would be in if they hadn’t interfered, there is no way to know.

China and Russia also have been up to it in recent years.

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve
FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Thanks, we collectively appreciate the level of your personal support. 🙄☹️

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Just wave the Big stick at them like a quartet of BUFFS flying nearby. And ask your lovely Marines if they fancy a Winter Cruise on the Prince of Wales, they quite enjoyed their last little Jollie on HMS Queen Elizabeth. And can they take their F35B’s with them ?
CSG21 did one really important thing that some folks in your country don’t like. It proved that smaller carriers can carry one hell of a big stick courtesy of precision munitions and cross decking isn’t just a nice idea, it’s damn handy.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Perhaps there are a few malcontents who may harbor ‘not invented here’ thoughts, but virtually guarantee USN/USMC brass do not have that viewpoint! They absolutely would not support ongoing RN QE class trials off the East Coast, or continuing USMC deployments w/ future RN CSGs, if there was not a joint plan to utilize the QE class to augment USN CVNs, probably primarily in the NA. Enlightened USN self-interest is a reasonably complete explanation for level of cooperation. 🤔

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Yep they are incredibly helpful but it does beg the question i# the US stuck in the mud and ignoring the obvious. Our QE costs a quarter of a US CVN and is capable of operating @36 F35B plus helicopters and drones. The USN are jammed with a quandary, they continue to order huge massively expensive CVN’s. But have cut the size of the CAG due to the effectiveness of stand off precision weapons and increased sortie rates due to better handling and serviceability. The USMC built 2 America class LPH with enhanced air power and no well decks and… Read more »

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

The America class has been a great gap filler for the USN. I agree on CVN however much of the issue is industry and political momentum. Hard to switch away no matter how much sense it makes.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Actually concur privately w/ 90+% of the content of your post. The official perspective is that the US has committed to the acquisition of four Ford class CVNs: Gerald R. Ford, CVN-78, commissioned 22 July 2017; John F. Kennedy, CVN-79, scheduled 2025; Enterprise, CVN-80, scheduled 2028; and Dorian Miller, CVN-81, scheduled 2032. Additional vessels, as of this moment in time, should be viewed as speculative. Privately believe there will be additional members of the Ford class, if the ChiComs do not overturn the apple cart in the interim. War, or even the real threat of same, in the Indo-Pacific could… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

I just watch the USN flogging its financial guts out to ensure they get to the Magical 11 CVN and most of the time can field 8. The world has changed since the 80’s and there really is just one 1st tier opposition and that’s China and hemmed in with lots of islands. Bite the bullet build 8 for 6 deployable in a focussed way. The rest of the problems can be dealt with by a medium Carrier of about 60k and an airgroup of 40 to 50 aircraft. Sortie rate of @110 pd with a surge of @150 pd.… Read more »

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Perhaps inexpensive land was available for development originally, but unfortunately, property values have risen substantially in the interim 😁

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

SWAG that USMC/USN, in addition to cooperation in deployments of the QE class, will also be closely monitoring the development/maturation of the class over the longer term. There will be abiding attention accorded after UAVs mature in the capability to perform the AEW, AR, ASW, COD, etc., missions. Best estimate of that timeframe would be w/in the 10-20 yr. window. Would be surprised if UAV development does not become an AUKUS Pillar 2 initiative. Believe USN is not averse to incorporating a relative bargain into the fleet, if a proven capability. 🤔

Netking
Netking
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

Think on this.
Cost of USS Ford is $13.3 billion with a crew of 4,300.
Cost of USS America $3 billion with a crew of 1200 plus 1300 troops.”

Those are not the only or even the most important metric used when force structure planning. The delta in sortie generation rates between the ford class and other smaller carriers is shocking. There is also a legitimate point about how difficult it is to defend smaller carriers. I believe there is definitely a place for lightning carriers but I can’t see them replacing CVNs any time in the coming decades.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Farouk,

If Brazil detects Mad Vlad’s/Russian paw prints in this situation, won”t it complicate Russian relationship w/ other BRICS members, and the ‘Global South’ in general? 🤔. Post, post Cold War I is becoming complicated…😱

farouk
farouk
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Personally I don’t think Putin minds as long as he can end his little foray into the Ukraine before the upcoming elections in Russia. It kind of explains the huge push in the Avdiivka area and to the north in which to try and enter the elections as a Hero of Russia. Pushes which have been extremely expensive in men and equipment But to achieve that win he needs to divert attention away from the Ukraine which includes military support , which pound for pound has really hurt Moscow at the coal face and a little bit further back. he… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

My enemies enemies are my friends.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Honestly, at this point, believe that no one w/in US can accurately predict the level of future US support for UKR, especially in the financial realm. For some reason, the concept of expropriation of $300+B in seized Russian assets to fund weapon purchases has not gained any evident traction. Dunno, even w/ inflation, that amount should suffice for the purchase of a few 155 mm rounds. 🤔

Crabfat
Crabfat
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Putin shouldn’t worry too much about winning his next election. He’s doing so well in the (official) polls. All the opposition parties concede that Putin is so popular, they have decided not to contest the election, so as to ensure a landslide win for him. In fact, most have already shut down their offices, as an early show of support.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Time for the queen elizabeth group to get across the Atlantic quickly.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

The US always has one carrier in home waters both in the Atlantic and Pacific, primarily used for trg to keep their flyboys upto speed, so they would always be available if they were required.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

Why would we want both of them over there at the same time ? Just ask the USMC if they fancy a Winter Cruise in the Caribean. I’m sure they’d love to operate their F35B’s off Prince of Wales and she is already on that side of the pond doing trials.
We get to display our resolve, back up a commonwealth member and the Marines get to demonstrate their adaptability.
If that doesn’t scare the Venezuelans I don’t know what will.
And that leaves QE available elsewhere if needed.

They can fetch the ice cream and we provide the Beer.

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  ABCRodney

We’ll make a big news item of the task group heading over the Atlantic.
While prince of wales is in the region she would need some aircraft flown out, aircrews, maintainers etc and a port visit to get all on board. Don’t know how full her weapon stocks are. Lack of escorts etc.
statements should be getting released letting them know that forces will be sent if any invasion takes place.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

Just ship the USMC F35B’s onboard and load up their weapons. It isn’t like they didn’t learn how to make it work during CSG21 🤔

Expat
Expat
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

No can’t be true Venuzuela a model democratic socialist state that respects the freedoms of all…..

Eric
Eric
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. As a Dutchman, this has me slightly worried. After all Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao belong to the Kingdom of the Netherlands and are just miles off the Venezuelan coast.

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Yeah, only just been reading about this in the last day or so- can’t believe it’s not being more widely reported in the UK.
Maybe Defender (?) will get turned around and sailed back to the Caribbean?
I can absolutely see the hand of Russia in this, spreading attention wide. Not to mention the talks of North Korean nuclear tests too.

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

Dauntless 👍

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul T

Thank you! I should really keep up on which is which…

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

If this is a Putin inspired crisis, there’s a good chance Venezuala has no intentions of invading. As a distraction and a way of diverting allied resources, the threat is enough.

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Hi Farouk Thanks for this little nugget of News, you must read a far wider range of media sources than most of us. What is scary is that I went on multiple search engines about this and not one single U.K. news outlet, paper or anything mentioned about it. How odd 🤔 I seem to remember a Media Shit Storm when the US invaded Grenada to release US hostages who were being held by Cuban troops. But a communist regime actually wanting to invade a Democratic Commonwealth country with massive Oil reserves, not a Scoobie Do ! Then again obvious… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

Keep an eye 👀 on that one .Moscow enjoy havoc 😈

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  farouk

I do know that there is a Webcam of Halifax NS which is sometimes interesting. Went on at 0800 AST yesterday and HMS Kent was in with lots of activity around her. At 11:00 AST she was a dot on the Horizon.
Dauntless is in the Caribbean, POW is stateside so maybe we may just be doing something. Where’s Albion when you need her ?

Tom
Tom
1 month ago

Another area highlighted, where the UK armed forces are stretched to the limit. For me, it’s way past high time, that the MOD look into bringing back what were known as the true workhorses of the fleet. By that I mean a Corvette type or class of vessel.

Fast, agile multi role vessels, placed between a Type 23 Frigate and a River Class. Maybe 8 to start with.

Just an idea.

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

Like a Type 31 you mean? I can’t imagine us being able to build something fighty for less than T31. Khraeef OPV was offered by BAE for T31 competition but lost.

Oli G
Oli G
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

T 31 is set to have 32x Mk41 vls – not exactly a light armrament, but definitely not a heavy one either

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  Oli G

Certainly going to be useful if two 8packs have quad CAMM and the other two have FC/ASW and LPS missiles, which would ideally be quadpacked also.

FieldLander
FieldLander
1 month ago
Reply to  Toby J

You cannot quad pack FC/ASW in a Mk41, they will not fit!

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  FieldLander

The LPS, not FC/ASW
Though, now you mention it…

SailorBoy
SailorBoy
1 month ago
Reply to  Toby J

Could probably do it in the new Super VLS being fitted to Zumwalts

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  Oli G

That depends on what exactly the Govt/MOD are prepared to pay to put in them.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

The problem with that size vessel is if they are well armed they will be short legged and poor sea keepers..these are vessels generally purchased by brown water navy’s.

Tom
Tom
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Hi… What is a “brown water navy”?

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

A navy designed to fight largely near coastlines or estuaries. Like most African navies, that can protect their coastlines or do anti piracy but that’s about it. Next step up is green water, this includes corvettes, ASW capability, minesweeping, conventional subs and is designed for sea environments such as the baltic, caribbean and Med.
Finally there’s blue water which is the whole shebang, frigates, destroyers, carriers et al

klonkie
klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Toby J

Hi Tony I think the definitions are

brown water- rivers and estuaries
white water – costal , littoral
blue water- as you pointed out

SailorBoy
SailorBoy
1 month ago
Reply to  klonkie

Thanks for clarigication, yes I slightly overrepresented Green water. So where would Sweden, Norway be on that scale? Top end of Green water or bottom of Blue?

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  SailorBoy

hhm good question- I’d settle for bottom of Blue.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

Hi Tom..brown water describes those navy’s designed to act in home waters no further out than the military meaning of littoral zone, which is effectively the range of shore based weapon systems so you can probably define the littoral as around the radar horizon of a shore based radar( not the scientific meaning of littoral zone which is different) so costal waters…there is a newer term called green water navy, these are designed to fight regional wars. Blue water navy is a navy that is global and can project significant power across all the seas of the globe. so these… Read more »

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

The argument has always been that we have global interests and so need a blue water navy, and so all vessels should have the legs to be wherever they may be needed. That has, for the last little while precluded corvettes as far as I understand it.
But, if we’re considering the Baltic, High North, and even the Med as key areas now that Russia is getting difficult again, we should perhaps revisit a smaller but more capably armed portion of the fleet.

SailorBoy
SailorBoy
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

We could always have a corvette for North Sea and Baltic to cover the role of the River B1s and keep T31s for everything else.
Not sure on numberings but would be a T17 I think? Something with a hull sonar, 57mm and Wildcat, maybe 12 CAMM
To keep the Russians occupied without a full ASW asset

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  SailorBoy

Going off what our allies are doing, a canister of NSM would probably need to be included too. Otherwise, I’d agree, if we consider Russia a long term threat- which I think we have to unfortunately.

SailorBoy
SailorBoy
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

Then we should just use the (already designed) 50m FIAC for the Ukrainians to be built here.
Though maybe with a prop shaft to add range

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom

Could we get a fast river sized thing (or smaller) for zooming around the Baltic and North Sea? Would have 57mm, 12 CAMM for AA and small boat defence, mebbe a couple of 30mm for defense and that’s it unless Sea Spear or LPS get going properly.

Toby J
Toby J
1 month ago
Reply to  Toby J

Something like the 50m patrol boat designed for Ukraine to be built in glasgow but with helipad not ASMs

Barry Larking
Barry Larking
1 month ago

… since 1980.

I remember how amused I was when President Ronald Reagan asked his allies to help defend Gulf shipping from the Navy of the Mad Mullahs many years after the R.N. had been quietly doing their job. The situation was summed up by an official as ‘We pretend we aren’t there and the Iranians pretend they haven’t seen us.’ Then the entire U.S. media turned up for a photo opportunity (jamming every radio frequency channel with chatter) and the oil tanker ostentatiously escorted into Kuwait was promptly mined.

Andy reeves
Andy reeves
1 month ago

Handy flotilla just about right for the job

Bill Glew
Bill Glew
1 month ago

Why send a ship to the Persian Gulf when the current problem area is the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.?

Nick C
Nick C
1 month ago
Reply to  Bill Glew

Iran’s sticky fingerprints are all over the current Hamas/Hezbollah situation in the Middle East. I venture to suggest that this is being done to preempt any action in the Gulf. If Iran mined Hormuz, for example, and cut off the oil to much of the world the price would rocket, and the main beneficiaries would be Russia who as we know are great friends with the mullahs. I think it’s called back scratching.

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Bill Glew

If shtf problems will be also in Persian Gulf

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago

Also announced today. The Stingray torpedo will be integrated onto the RAF P8 Poseiden.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago

Another task for the RN , sure it needs to be done. But with resources been what there are government asking for more to be done, will HMG ever admit they got it wrong in 2010 cuts.Hard to believe the man at the top at the time is back in government 🙄

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

In 2010 there were deep cuts, yes, in all areas. I was shocked at the time.
What should be said though regards escort numbers, 4 were lost in that review.
The damage came way before from 1997 on when the escort fleet reduced from 35 to 23.
Not defending the cuts, just pointing out facts re escort numbers especially.
Yes, it is galling that Cameron is now back in politics. It won’t be for long.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago

Morning DM let’s hold our breath on that one .Was reading the other week that he wanted UK to start handing more foreign Aid money over again ,given our economy the way it is we’re is the man coming from .Praying he keeps is noise out of defence. 🙏

Micki
Micki
1 month ago

Not enough ships to be everywhere , ridículous number of only 17 escorts in 2023 when at least a Minimum number of 25 is required.

Challenger
Challenger
1 month ago
Reply to  Micki

Effectively 16 given that HMS Westminster is laid up and very unlikely to return to sea. Various senior people within the Royal Navy and other informed commentators have said plenty of times over the last few years that they need a minimum of 24 escorts to do the job asked of them without running vessels and crews into the ground. Personally i’d like to see an extra 2 T26 given that the unit price has come down now that production is in full swing, and then 3 extra T31’s. Forget about trying to fund a distinct T32 design. Rosyth can… Read more »

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

I’m neither a senior person nor an informed commentator but 2 additional T26 and 3 additional T31 just feels right to give us a quick value for money path to a capable and balanced fleet. Perhaps a sister ship for Argus too?

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago

Here I go again, but how the hell do the RN continue to meet the tasks it is set? Good planning, long term vision and keeping that plan and vision on track no matter who becomes head shed! Army please do take fucking note! Well done once again the RN!

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

Strategic shrinkage is probably the answer. How many mid sized countries are operating a fleet of 6 warships on the other side of the world while trying to defend home waters against a resurgent enemy and do defence engagement in every ocean in the world at the same time.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

Lammy is reported on the front page of the i today saying that the EU will be Labour’s priority ‘because its in our back yard’. And labour would strike a defence pact with Europe.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Yeah is called the British Army been a European Army .And for our Navy hand our Aircraft carriers over on request , and for the RAF your chinooks will come in handed ,buy more F35s and we’d have them two.😮 🇬🇧

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Well that’s certainly been the traditional view. Be interesting to see how such a scenario would develop. Reflecting on the current UKDF articles on UK forces in the Baltic and at our contributions to Ukraine for example, I would tend to the view that, rather than being absorbed into some EU blob, the UK has been positioning itself as a leader of joint european force deployments in Northern Europe. Certainly Germany needs some ‘encouragement’ ,shall we say, to deploy its industrial and military strength; its relations with France are at a low ebb. UK relations with Germany are good and… Read more »

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

God help us 😕

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

I’m confident the UK star is in the ascendant. We have built a defence equipment network and strong relations with Poland (T31 and Camm), Italy ( Tempest), the Netherlands ( MRSS design), Norway (NSM, Kongsberg), Sweden ( Archer). Our carriers will add significant muscle to the USN and USMC. Turkey look likely to buy our early Typhoons. Sunlit uplands 🙂

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Where as lammy’s priority was to pretend the U.K. can be a force in every ocean. It doesn’t matter what party they are from. The U.K. cannot be a world power with a shrinking navy.
Normal thinking would be to secure near your country first and spread out from there.

Jim
Jim
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

Our gamble in the Asia pacific only works if the US is continued to be engaged in Europe. However given the state of the Republican Party this can no longer be guaranteed. The threat to Europe from Russia can now be dealt with by European countries lead by the UK with sufficient will. We may need to double down on that and leave commitments in the pacific behind. Do we really need or want a show down with China? How many Asian countries will seriously oppose China in a shooting war? The main reason for giving up the British empire… Read more »

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
1 month ago
Reply to  Jim

“The main reason for giving up the British empire was to prevent us becoming over committed protecting a number of far flung foreign countries who did not want to spend on protecting themselves”

What a load of absolute bollocks. Nothing changes with the complete bullshit you post.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

It was more an economic argument and strategic exhaustion issue, in that the empire was once providing a net income and was effectively put in place to allow resource extraction and security of markets. That became harder to manager due to nations wanting independence and strategic exhaustion from 2 world wars…there was also the U.S. angle in that due to national debt the US had the UK government by the short and curlies and it saw the British empire as a strategic competitor….so it used that to end any chance of stabilising the British empire even if the UK still… Read more »

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  monkey spanker

Agree all of that except perhaps the idea that Lammy is pretending. I think the likelihood is that a labour government would ‘pivot’ back to Europe and the Atlantic, but will not explicitly say so before the election campaign for fear of being accused of wanting to reverse Brexit, rejoining the eu. Have to say it does look to me like Starmer’s team is already in direct contact with eu leaders and is putting together a comprehensive ‘pseudo eu’ package of defence and trade ‘pacts’ that can be sold to both brexiteers and remainers. By common agreement RN needs 4… Read more »

ABCRodney
ABCRodney
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

I’d actually be happy with just +3 T31 in the short term if we get + 3 SSN(R)/AUKUS and a pledge for 8 ASW replacements for the T45.

Cinoìd Ó Crudachai
Cinoìd Ó Crudachai
1 month ago

Given history from British lord Balford giving away these former German Ottoman Empire to Rothschild US millionaire of Jewish background for use to home Israeli after holocaust though what Israeli is doing same to local people who are indigenous to Palestine. Seriously think little England might g
Had lernt by taking away peoples countries tends to get the locals back up .. reap what you sow .

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago

Good spot. The boss hits the man, the man hits the wife, the wife hits the dog….

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago

Hopefully NSM fitted? Or just a standard type 45. Good for air defence but lacking meaningful multi-role capability.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Watch the budget the other week Hunt and PM still only putting 2%GDP on defence ,if no extra money always going be same way sadly and make do with what weave got 😕

monkey spanker
monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Exactly. Lots of talk but nothing happening with how to pay for ever increasing costs of getting new more advanced equipment.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

I wonder if it will be joining the Eisenhower battle group, as it’s a bit thin on the ground escort wise for such a hot position, one Tic and 2 burkes, + a french addition…the US don’t normally roll with only three of their own escorts.

Pacman27
Pacman27
29 days ago

Lets hope they have quad packed 16 VLS with CAMM – 48 cells doesn’t seem enough given what’s happening.