NATO members are putting forces on standby and sending additional ships, fighter jets and personnel to eastern Europe as Russia continues its military build-up in and around Ukraine.

According to a post from NATO on their official Facebook page:

“NATO Allies send more ships and jets to enhance deterrence and defence in eastern Europe In a strong sign of allied solidarity, NATO members are putting forces on standby and sending additional ships and fighter jets to NATO deployments in eastern Europe, as Russia continues its military build-up in and around Ukraine.

NATO is a defensive Alliance. In response to Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014, NATO increased its presence in the eastern part of the alliance, including with four multinational battlegroups in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. Their presence makes clear that an attack on one Ally will be considered an attack on the whole Alliance. There were no NATO forces in the eastern part of the Alliance before 2014.”

So who is doing what?

According to NATO:

  • Denmark is sending a frigate to the Baltic Sea and is set to deploy four fighter jets to Lithuania in support of NATO’s long-standing air-policing mission in the region.
  • Spain is sending ships to join NATO naval forces and is considering sending fighter jets to Bulgaria.
  • France has expressed its readiness to send troops to Romania under NATO command.
  • The Netherlands is sending two fighter aircraft to Bulgaria from April to support NATO’s air-policing activities in the region and is putting a ship and land-based units on standby for NATO’s Response Force.
  • The United States has also made clear that it is considering increasing its military presence in the eastern part of the Alliance.

What about Britain?

The United Kingdom has sent thousands of anti-tank weapons to Ukraine and has been conducting surveillance flights near the Russian border with Ukraine.

Why? Well, quite simply most Western intelligence services appear to believe that an invasion of Ukraine by Russia is imminent after tens of thousands of Russian troops massed on the border with Ukraine.

Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace said, “the United Kingdom will stand up for the right of countries to choose their alliances. More important than the choice they make is the right to have that choice”. He later added:

“The UK’s position on Ukraine is also clear. We unequivocally support its sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders, including Crimea. Ukraine is an independent, sovereign country of proud, independent Ukrainian people. The UK Ministry of Defence already has a long-standing relationship with our Ukrainian counterparts, and we continue to provide support in many areas, including security assistance and defence reform.

Since 2015, the UK has helped to build the resilience and capabilities of the Ukrainian armed forces through Operation Orbital, which has trained more than 22,000 Ukrainian troops. We maintain the right to deliver bilateral support to a sovereign nation when requested in areas that will better help them defend themselves. We have taken the decision to supply Ukraine with light, anti-armour defensive weapons systems. A small number of UK personnel will provide early-stage training for a short period of time within the framework of Operation Orbital before returning to the United Kingdom.”

Britain and Ukraine’s military cooperation – what’s involved?

British military assistance to Ukraine was increased significantly after 2014 and the Russian annexation of Crimea, a Parliamentary Research Briefing paper has taken a look at just what that involves.

In June 2021 the UK, Ukraine and industry signed a Memorandum of Implementation that will push the NCEP forward. Work will now commence on:

• Ukraine’s purchase of two refurbished Royal Navy Sandown-class minehunters in a government-to-government sale
• The sale and integration of missiles on new and in-service Ukrainian Navy patrol and airborne platforms, including a training and engineering support package
• Assistance in building new naval bases in the Black Sea and Azov Sea
• The development and joint production of eight fast missile warships
• Participation in the Ukrainian project to deliver a modern frigate capability.

In 2015 the UK launched Operation Orbital, a non-lethal training and capacity building operation that provides guidance and training to the Ukrainian armed forces.

“In August 2020 the MOD announced that the UK will lead a new multinational maritime training initiative that will boost the capacity of Ukraine’s Navy to act in the Black Sea. The UK and Ukraine have also launched the Naval Capabilities Enhancement Programme, which will develop Ukraine’s naval capabilities.”

To date, over 22,000 Ukrainian military personnel have been trained under these initiatives.

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 works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago

Denmark sends a Frigate to the Baltic. I thought they were on the Baltic already!

Spain is an eye opener.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago

Spain reguarly have an AAW destroyer in the Baltics and have armoured infantry in Latvia.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

Really, David? Didn’t know that. Always seen them as NATO freeloaders like some of the others.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago

Correction, armoured engineers. But yes, been on board the, spelling, Alvaro de Bazan.

julian1
julian1
2 months ago

Spain has been a regular contributor to Baltic Air Policing for a while

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago

Absolutely not free loaders Daniele. They joined NATO in 1982.
They participated in Operation Unified Protector against Ghadaffi, fielding a tanker, four F-18s, a sub, a frigate and a surveillance aircraft. In recent years they have contributed over 3,000 personnel to 19 operations, included 6 EU missions, 6 NATO and 2 UN missions, are currently training the Iraqi army to fight Da’esh, and are doing 2 ops with France (Mali and Central African Republic).

Maybe thats more than Germany is doing/has done?

Pete
Pete
2 months ago

Strongest statement I’ve seen came from the Spanish defence minister who said last week that NATO will defend those than want to or are trying to join NATO

Finney
Finney
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

That would appear to be out of line with NATO’s charter and Stoltenberg’s statements thus far.

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Finney
Observer
Observer
2 months ago

Spain has since 2017 350 troops in Letonia, half a dozen of Leopards 2E, 15 infantry VCI Pizarro. Armour TOAs, spike missiles, etc. Also, and engineer unit. All stationed in Adazi base. Spain has also been deploying euro fighters as part of the Baltic Air Police every year. In 2021 military forces deployed seven eurofighters and 130 people in the Siauliai (Lithuania) base. Spain is a regular contributor to this mission. Eight times air forces were depleted (2006 with Mirage F-1, 2015-16-17-18-19-2020 with F18s and Eurofighers. In Romania, between February and March 2021, the air force deployed 6 Eurofighters and… Read more »

Observer
Observer
2 months ago

Spain also contributes with the F-102 Blas de Lezo frigate (Álvaro de Bazán class), which will be under the NATO permanent naval group (SNMG-2). It will stop at the Rota Spanish maritime base, where an SH60B helicopter alongside one marine infantry team will embark. Also, an OPV the Spanish BAM Meteoro, which is already leading the Anti mines naval measures (Snmcmg 2).
Next week the Spanish Armada mine hunting Sella is departing to join the Snmcmg 2.
Last year the Spanish Armada F-105 Cristobal Colón led the SNMG2 (Standing Nato Maritime Group)

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Observer

Good details O. Well, “viva La Spania!!”

julian1
julian1
2 months ago

i noticed that, so what they mean is a ship left port and headed east!

John
John
2 months ago

Frankly, aside from the transfer of material, this is a pretty sad list of actions in the article… Spain is CONSIDERING sending planes, the Netherlands will send two whole aircraft in APRIL, France is willing to but hasn’t sent any troops.

If there is a risk of imminent war in Ukraine and any actual concern whatsoever that this could spill into nato countries, these are hardly serious or proactive measures.

Gareth
Gareth
2 months ago
Reply to  John

Just typed out similar then noticed your comment – completely agree. Token gestures for the most part.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

In cases like this tokens really matter especially when Russia will be looking at the intent of all NATO members, even a small bit of skin in the game shows and locks in the intent.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  John

Because of Ukraine not being a NATO member any actions and deployments are going to be limited to the periphery anyway – token gestures maybe but gestures nonetheless.

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  John

It is more complex than you make out. Basically we do not want to be seen to be overly aggressive too soon as that gives Putin excuses and also bolsters his message that NATO are the aggressors. Sending a couple of aircraft is a way to send a message to Putin that you are supporting Ukraine while not being over the top and has the added benefit of getting command structures, ground equipment etc in place so it is easier to send more assets later at short notice.

International Diplomacy is very complex.

SD67
SD67
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Really? We can send as many assets as we want to a NATO country. Poland doesn’t even border Russia. There should be large NATO exercises going on now in south east Poland, message would be sent

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

And your comment is probably why you do not work in diplomacy…

Plus Poland does have a land border with Russia and another massive land border with Russia’s puppet state of Belarus.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Where does Poland have a border with Russia? Is this why you’re not a cartographer 😉

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

Have a look at the top of Poland and you will notice a place called kaliningrad oblast. That’s Russia!

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

That’s not Russia! That’s a Russian missile fortress, with land stolen from Germany (Prussia) designed to shoot down in a 360° 500km radius.

Ok, ok, you’re right. Bollards.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  Jon

Ok, ok, oi tells yea, oif got VERY early on-set dementia, heavens I lived in that neck of the woods for 14 years.

Tams
Tams
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

Yes, but unnecessarily gouding him into an attack is not going to help. He wants NATO to deploy a large force so that he can spin it as NATO planning to attack (and yes, the Russian public on the whole will buy into that crap).

Support structures and networks are being reinforced though, and should the need arise, more assets will be deployed easily.

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Putin is actively engaging in undermining the territorial and political sovereignty of Ukraine, something the UK has a treaty to defend (Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances). While you work out your 87 dimensional chess game, Putin is capitalizing on Chamberlain’s appeasement strategy.

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  John

The Budapest agreement was based on the Non-proliferation of nuclear weapons treaty which Trump tore up… Putin is playing a diplomatic game and we are the unwilling participants. He wants NATO to react in a big way as that would give him more Kudos at home and would potentially give him the excuse he needs to invade Ukraine. The western countries know this and are playing their hand delicately and precisely in order to try to send a message while not giving any free passes to Putin. We should have been more tough on Russia (and China) in the run… Read more »

David Flandry
David Flandry
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Trump Trump Trump

Bob
Bob
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Since when did a US president sign a treaty on behalf of the UK?

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Bob

The thing about joint treaties is that if one party tears it up then effectively the whole treaty is torn up for everyone… Unless those nations left then decide to create a new treaty between themselves. The US being the most significant signatory means that Russia deems it to be nullified.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Not True NPT was scrapped!
NPT stills stands.
Budapest agreement also still stands.

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Lee, John does makes a valid point. Prudence demands NATO support Poland as a member state. Personally , I feel NATO has the balance about right for now. I agree with your comment on not being tough on Putin prior. Let’s not lose sight of how this started- Russia invading the Crimea, an act of War. It’s disappointing the West places strong sanctions on Iran and The Taliban but not to the same level on Putin/s Russia. I’m no advocate for appeasement, but Chamberlain did do all he could to prevent war prior to ’39. It is important to maintain… Read more »

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

There were pretty hard sanctions on Russia. However a lot of it was on individuals and that simply does not work. The sanctions that were in the state have had a major impact but the idea was to punish Putin rather than the people of Russia. The key is to make sure the sanctions turn the people against Putin rather than giving them a common enemy to rally against.

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Exactly but they had a reverse affect, a big import substitution drive that cost a lot of exports to Russia along with a very serious loss of agricultural business across much of Europe when Russia countered. That near 8 years of import substitution is one reason why Russia would likely survive new sanctions now. Mind you the sanctions have proved to hit Europe not the US, the instigator.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

I don’t think that is really the case. Yes sanctions often hit both sides however it is estimated that the sanctions put in Russia due to Crimea have resulted in a 2% drop in GDP for Russia while the EU has seen tiny drops. Any new sanctions could be far deeper for Russia. The US is already preparing for Europe to cut Russian gas supplies and that would cripple Russia as it is their main income. Russia’s weakness is that it relies in western money. It could switch to China but China has a far bigger plan for Russia than… Read more »

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Well said Lee

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Bingo. The West ignored the Budapest agreement with Crimea, Trump exiting the nuclear accord was years later. Although Trump is an easy scapegoat, let’s be honest and admit that like before, nothing would be different regardless of Trump’s presidency and the nuclear treaties.

Lee’s argument is one of convenience.

Last edited 2 months ago by John
lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  John

My argument is not one of convenience. I am making no excuses for Putin. However it is fact that Trump pulled the US out of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That is certainly not helpful. Putin went in to Crimea on the pretence that they were in danger. That was obviously manufactured by Russia themselves as an excuse to Invade but the point is that the West did little to combat those claims and did very little to stop Putin. So Putin could claim that technically he did not break the Budapest Memorandum as he was simply acting to safeguard the… Read more »

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Invasion of Crimea 2014. Election of Trump 2016.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

NOT True, the US pull out of NPT!
You are spreading untruths.
The US did pull out of INF.

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

So your argument is that because Putin had “reasons” for crimea, the west gets a pass for ignoring its defence treaties. and that this time he wouldn’t have “reasons” and it’s only bc of trump that we are no longer obliged? These are some mental gymnastics.

Let’s be honest. Putin’s rationale is the same as before with difference only in nuance. The west abandoned Ukraine long before Trump was president. That treaty would be as worthless today regardless of Trump. Just own it, be truthful and stop trying to use others as an excuse.

Last edited 2 months ago by John
lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  John

Nope. My argument is that Putin cleverly plays the game by manipulating a reason to Invade that means the agreements are not broken. Obviously we all know that the reasons were manufactured by Putin but the issue is that it is hard to fully prove. When he does this he often outmanoeuvres the West however we could and should work harder to stop this happening in the first place. For instance they are now trying to do this by releasing information that Putin is planning to Invade and releasing information on how he plans to fabricate a reason for doing… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Churchill also built time for us to finalise preparations for war. Many focus on Chamberlain the appeaser and seem to forget that it was him who readied us for war and then declared war on Germany.

Daniel
Daniel
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Actually Putin said they have no “Obigatory Documents” with Ukraine back in 2014 when they seized Crimea. If you recall this all started in 2014 well before Trump. This was from a source I found. He basically said no Treaty Exists. After the annexation of Crimea by Russia in 2014, Canada,France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and US stated that Russian involvement was a breach of its Budapest Memorandum obligations to Ukraine which had been transmitted to the United Nations under the signature of Sergei Lavrov and others, and in violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. On 4 March 2014, the Russian president Vladimir Putin replied… Read more »

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Trump did Not scrap the Non-Proliferation Treaty(NPT).
NPT stills stands.
INF was scrapped, that is a treaty on medium range missiles.
The UK was a signatorie of Budapest agreement
NOT a supporter of Trump either!

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
2 months ago
Reply to  John

It’s not a declaration of war John. Its a big political game.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Yes this is about NATO members putting skin in the game to show intent and solidarity.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Exactly. And even if Russia did invade, we wouldn’t be getting involved with boots on the ground or air strikes. Just very harmful sanctions.Putin is just playing a political game to test the west’s resolve.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Hard on Ukraine but this is a fight only they can fight in the end. NATO can show solidarity in making it very difficult for Russia and be very clear about the willingness to defend actual NATO members. But in the end it will all come down to the people of Ukraine’s willingness to bleed in defence of their sovereignty vs the harm the leadership of Russia’s is willing to take in regards to Russian lives and money against how badly they want Ukraine under their control. Personally I think Putin would be mad to invade Ukraine. A few years… Read more »

SD67
SD67
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

So um, what Western Alliance structure was Kuwait a member of ?

For that matter – what alliance is the republic of Ireland signed up to? I guess we’d be fine with the Russians rolling into Dublin ….(end sarcasm)

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

With statements regarding their not being in NATO, clearly the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances means nothing to the signatories, which include the US and UK. This is a treaty which guaranteed Ukraine’s political and territorial sovereignty.

SwindonSteve
SwindonSteve
2 months ago
Reply to  John

Having not read the memorandum, but having read commentary from those that have, the wording of the agreement appears to be somewhat ambiguous, especially around the consequences should any of the signatories break the terms of the memorandum.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  John

The memorandum was effectively torn up by Trump. It is pretty much null and void as an actual treaty. It may live on in moral feelings etc but Putin will consider it non existent.

John
John
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

It’s interesting that the US can unilaterally nullify the UK’s treaty commitments. Had no idea.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  John

The UK is still signatory to NPT. But Not to INF(1987).

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

I think the memorandum was torn up in 2014 with Crimea, although Trumps actions and behaviours post 2016 have provided Putin with further layers of comfort

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Putin no longer recognised it.
It still stands.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Trump did no such thing, Russia ‘technically’ invaded Crimea on the pretext of protecting the rights of its citizens.

The other signatories of the memorandum including the UK and US amongst others sent a strongly worded letter to the UN and that was quite literally it. Trump didnt single handedly do anything in relation to what happened.

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  James

Trump pulled the US out of the Nuclear non-proliferation treaty. That treaty was what the Budapest Memorandum was tied to… Putin cleverly out manoeuvred the West in Crimea in order to take Crimea without technically breaking the Memorandum (We had opportunities to prevent that but failed to do so).

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Crimea in invaded 2014.. Trump elected 2016.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Disinformation Alert!
Not True!

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  James

Agreed, at last!
Lee is spreading Disinformation!

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

Or simply mixing up NPT with INF…

Calm down people!

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

OK, Lee will accept your mistake.

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

The memorandum was set in place by the USA, Russia and the UK all were co-signatory’s to guaranty the security of the Ukraine so it would give up the Nuclear weapons it inherited after the collapse of the Warsaw pact/Soviet Union. 2014 saw Mr Putin rip up any and all treaties involving the protection of Ukraine by invading the Crimea and propping up the counter government pro Russian separatists in the East of the Ukraine while the now President of the USA Mr Biden then the Vis-President affectively did nothing apart from a few sanctions which have had very little… Read more »

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

No it was Not!

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  John

It’s not a treaty John and it is unfortunately not really worth much at all.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

While I agree, Iraq was not a nuclear power… That makes a difference.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

We’ll let’s see…. um well the difference between Russia and Iraq in three really basis steps for the Geopolitical learner:

1) Russia has a nuclear arsenal that can end humanity
2) Russia has a nuclear arsenal that can end Humanity

Oh yes and the really big one….RUSSIAN HAS A NUCLEAR ARSENAL THAT CAN END HUMANITY.

surprising I’m sure but that sort of Thing comes into consideration…..end sarcasm

Last edited 2 months ago by Jonathan
Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Or .. Kuwait was a major supplier of oil to the west

Kuwait was a major supplier of oil to the west

Kuwait was a major supplier of oil to the west

And Iraq wasn’t a nuclear power.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Your such a cynic 😂😂😂

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

😅 I try my best…

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  SD67

Lol…that would be the Organisation of Interpretational Liberalism…others known as the O.I.L

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

You could be correct. The West as a whole has become far to soft. Soft liberal society’s, and weak politicians more interested in political correctness.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Bravo!

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

To interested in making money for multinationals and billionaires without any link to nations.

lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

I fail to see how liberalism means soft? Churchill was a liberal and I am not sure I would describe him as soft… The problem is we have incompetent politicians. One of the potential candidates for PM didn’t even know Dover was a major port!

Mark B
Mark B
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

I’m not sure the many of the public or the politicans have the foggiest idea what the role of parliament or the Government is.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yet still European Defence GDP hovers around a paltry 2%. Despite Putin having declared his intention to reimpose Russian power and influence along historical lines on day one of his inauguration in May 2000, alongside his unreconstructed KGB siloviki confederates. Twenty years of European prevarication by politicians addicted to NOT investing in realistic security measures. In terms of a pivot point in this country, i.e. in terms of having had 10 years of red flags but still cutting investment, Cameron is looking like the worst offender due to SDSR 2020. Mind you, Jonathan, European MPs obviously had an unshakable faith… Read more »

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
2 months ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

2010

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Hi Robert Whilst I agree with your assessment , there are sanctions and then there are sanctions. Sanctions drove the death of Apartheid in RSA in less than a decade. If properly implemented, sanctions are effective. Problem off course is this may force Putin’s hand as with time he looses internal backing and support

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Russia is too big and self sufficient plus there are many countries that will ignore them as Russian gas and oil is too dam important.

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

That’s a good point you raise. It would have to include an embargo on Russian oil and gas and I can’t see the Germans getting over enthused on that one

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Would be nice to think Saudi and Kuwait could divert oil and LNG at fair mkt price as a substitute given the investment to protect them in last 20 to 30 years. LNG can be fed into any networked LNG terminal in Europe with equivalent molecules being drawn out by the Germans.

https://www.google.com/search?q=european+lng+terminal+map&client=ms-android-samsung-rev2&source=android-browser&prmd=inmxv&sxsrf=AOaemvJD3S2h_OSd2h6Qk2oOsz0Esd1dqA:1643187462803&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwib8ZOohs_1AhUEsVYBHUKtAOgQ_AUoAXoECAIQAQ&biw=412&bih=736&dpr=2.63#imgrc=nm7QtVkB69j9AM&imgdii=Xwc514DaTG6rZM

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Fair market price is the spot price that the EU and UK decided was the way forward rather than long term contract fixed prices. It was their decision to play the spot price casino and they lost. This is an EU not Russian problem. I can’t see any Arab country, regardless of the past, selling at a significant discount. Anyway, there would need to be dozens of very expensive new terminals and ships to cope.

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

No suggestion of ‘at a discount’ FmP is not the same as spot. FmP is also often fixed. There is a methodology to accommodating significant LNG energy delivery volumes via the existing infrastructure. Coordinated uptime / downtime planning and utilising pressure capacities, reverse flow storage and line packing. Won’t deliver 100% of what Germany needs but add that to increased output from other sources and overtime increasing the access to motherload onshore deep shale deposits and the balance can be offset. It would take political will. The non political will approach would be build dedicated LNG terminal either inshore or… Read more »

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Thanks, very interesting. Do you know if the long term Russian contracts, like Hungary’s last September, are based on FmP? Along with the political will there would be the cost and time that these facilities would take to build. Also there are other issues, the Dutch seem to have been forced to delay their closing of their Groningen field due to the crisis which could have nasty environmental effects.

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Thanks, nor the rest of the EU also dependent on it. Apart from household heating there are major chemical industries involved. With the high cost of gas just look at CO2 in the UK!

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

With unfunny consequences if anyone makes the wrong moves.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago

Exactly. The best outcome is that the situation is quietly diffused.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Let’s all keep our fingers crossed.

Tommo
Tommo
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

The more Nato and the western democracies ramp up with these actions the more we fall into the role of the aggressors which will be lapped up by Russian state media and shown to the Russian public and also too the Chinese as another reason that we in the west are dead set on creating hostilities anywhere on the Globe ,Putin wasn’t a KGB officer for nothing ,

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Tommo

Hi Tommo. I was going to write a lengthy reply. But James below has said it for me. 👍

Tommo
Tommo
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Hi Robert ,Russia’s Foreign minister has again been on their State TV complaining about NATO build up that will play to the viewers, in this game of Chess I wonder when Mr Putin will play his Gas supply Gambit , The way he acts wouldn’t surprise me if he had the pipeline sabotaged and then blame it on Ukrainian forces Hitler used a fake incursion and attack on German property as a pretext too invade Poland I know slightly far fetched but you never know

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Tommo

I think NATO is already aware of the potential for a fake incursion, and will call Putins bluff. Our RC135’s will be all over it. Superb assets to have in this type of international chess game.

Tommo
Tommo
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Bad Chess players normally UP Table and the pieces go everywhere Rob

Tommo
Tommo
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

4th Feb Robert , BBC news Red Button, US claims Russia is planning a fake a fake Ukrainian attack on either Russian territory or against Russian- speaking people in Eastern Ukraine an excuse to Invade .A claim the Russian deny

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Tommo

They will play every trick in the book. Sneaky bastards.

Tommo
Tommo
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Caught with their Hand in the Cookie jar so too speak

James William Fennell
James William Fennell
2 months ago
Reply to  John

There is a balance to be found. NATO does not want to do anything which gives Putin an excuse to invade, however thin (claiming NATO aggression etc.), but at the same time needs to signal to Russia that they will not stand by while he occupies the country. It’s a game of chess. More important than the the numbers of ships and planes is the demonstration of unity. Putin now knows that France, Denmark, the Netherlands, Spain and the USA are united in resistance alongside those who have already stood up – the UK, Canada, Poland, Romania, the Baltics, Italy,… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by James William Fennell
Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago

Well said James

Bulkhead
Bulkhead
2 months ago

And Germany’s doing ?

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

eFP leader in Lithuania. Armour and Armoured Infantry. AAW frigate in Rīga, Latvia, quite often as well as supplying the AO for the NATO surface navy group.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

They’ve sent a field hospital unit.

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Actually they promised to send it last year but somehow never happened. They’ve now promised to send it in a few weeks !

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

I would imagine, Luftwaffe Tornado ECR, would be in great demand. One of NATOs most lethal options against Russian mobile missile launchers, exactly what it was designed for.

Presently the UK has no dedicated SEAD.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

The F35b,while not a dedicated SEAD Aircraft could cover a lot of the role anyway if needed,plus Rivet Joint has been filling it’s boots too.

DRS
DRS
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Other topic: seems a f35c has gone in the drink in the SCS on the Carl Vinson, looks like a traps failure and one of the arrestor cables snapped as 7 injured and pilot ejected. Hope all as well as can be.

Chris
Chris
2 months ago
Reply to  DRS

The pilot and two deck crew were airlifted for medical treatment in Manilla. Four other deck crew also experienced ‘minor’ injuries and were treated on-board.

Last edited 2 months ago by Chris
lee1
lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

I am not sure we need dedicated assets in that role. Typhoon and F35 can both carry HARM missiles and both are very good platforms for the job. Add that to Rivet joint being able to map out precise locations and capabilities and we have a very good system in place.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  lee1

Can raf typhoon carry harm missile? I didn’t think the raf had any. Alarm got taken out of service some years ago.
The plan may be to pick up where the radar is and drop a pave way or brimstone on it.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Yes F35 can carry HARM externally.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

Does the uk have any harm available? I’m sure if needed we can get some. I imagine it’s cleared on typhoon as I think the Germans/Italians use it

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I am pretty sure we do as ALARM was retired and replaced with HARM.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Lee1

When ALARM was retired the capability went too – the RAF has never replaced it with HARM.

Lee1
Lee1
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Wow yes you are correct. I could have sworn we had bought some. It looks like we are waiting for the far more capable Spear 3 EW. However I am sure we could easily purchase some HARM if needed as they are integrated into the F35 and Typhoon.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

From what I’m not quite sure! 😂
Hensoldt to equip German NH90 helicopters with protection systems
24 JANUARY 2022

“Hensoldt will equip 82 NHIndustries NH90 Tactical Transport Helicopters (TTH) with its latest Airborne Missile Protection System (AMPS), the company announced on 21 January.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/c4isr-command-tech/latest/hensoldt-to-equip-german-nh90-helicopters-with-protection-systems

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

Manning the Siegfried line….

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago

I wonder if the Ukrainians will have a shoreline once Russia finishes.

Should they do so, I do hope the future frigate programme is an AAW version of the T31.

The other thing that springs to mind is that a peaceful Ukraine could / would be a fantastic antidote to China and a new central Europe opportunity for patnering and cooperation.

One can just hope that the British Govt do everything possible – enhanced Int sharing, lethal weapons – AD and anti-armour as well as cyber against the ‘Soviet’ opfor that gives the Ukraine to become a manufacturing cooperation hub.

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

The problem is corruption is rife within the Ukraine.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

I knew that chestnut would arise. Latvia up until about 2016 – 18ish ‘washed’ 2% of all US $ transactions. Pop. 1.5m people.

Czech Republic have screwed the EU, Latvia are screwing the EU over railbaltica.

All the central European countries are neck deep in fraud and corruption but… slowly… it’s getting better.

Of course it was a UK bank that washed $3bn in cartel money and did not a day in prison. C’est le change 😉

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

I do find it odd that we Brits seem to think corruption is something that happens ‘over there’, where ever there is! The fact is that corruption is alive and kicking here in the UK. I have heard of people wanting to extend their homes being charged ‘supplementary fees’ by council officials, PM’s expenses scandal and of course there was the cladding scandal which in my book is a form of corruption given councils seem to own many of the affected buildings and are supposed to be responsible for overseeing the application of the building regulations (although that role is… Read more »

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Cheers Chariot Rider… and breathe 🙂

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

😉

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Mate- you are so right, a good post!

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Then so many mititary and civil service people on retirement joining companies whose products they ordered when in post. NHS too. Politicians doing the same Major and Blair stand out. What we have is very little ‘low level’ corruption but a lot at the top end where it is beyond the knowledge of most of the public.

dave12
dave12
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

Compared to Russia Ivan its is little.

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

Just as well they are being invaded by a corruption-free Russia! Do you support tens of thousands more human beings dying in an unnecessary war, because someone told you the country they lived in had corruption? If not, what point are you trying to make? The invasion of Crimea is touted as bloodless, but it precipitated a war in Eastern Ukraine where around 13,000 people have died. I’m sure their familes will be pleased to hear the problem is that corruption is rife. There’s always more than one problem, and you don’t sort any of them by creating yet another… Read more »

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Jon

Sorry, one point is wrong. They happened at a similar time with the people of Luhansk in particular probably fighting before Crimea.

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

Vladimir Putin is reportedly the richest man in the world. Not bad for someone who earned his living driving a taxi 30 years ago. Makes Jeff Bezos look small time.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  David Barry

If Ukraine loses its shoreline then the game would be up – Russia is scheming for the possibility of a Puppet Govt being in Kiev,if that’s the case they won’t be any Equipment sales from the UK.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Now if only NATO put a AAW destroyer in littoral waters, the Sovs would have to think twice about Air…

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago

What is Russia’s position on tactical nuclear weapons? Do they see them as purely that “tactical”, or as a weapon of deterrence only?

Mark
Mark
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

Looking back at history the Russians would toe the line and if the US did the same they would eventually back down at the last hour as with Cuba and Berlin standoffs, when the US shows weakness the Russians have done as they please…see chrimea

andy a
andy a
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

no russian nuclear playbook is very different to ours. Nato would treat nuclear as WMD and wouldnt use them really unless forced to. Russian military doctrine at least used to see the use of tactical nukes as just another weapon to be deployed. a scary thought. ie Nato pushs them back, thinking we are in a covential fight and they use tactical nukes to destroy our conventional battle groups, Nato would then deploy the big weapons and we are gone!

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago
Reply to  andy a

Thats what I thought. Russia see tactical low yield nuclear weapons as just that. But I wonder what NATOs response would really be. If for example a tactical nuke was used against an airfield in the Ukraine. Would natos automatic response to be to use nuclear weapons. I think not.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

See NPR 2018.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  andy a

Disgree. Surely a NATO response would be a tactical nuke in response.

Strategic is reserved for responding to a 1st strike with Russian ICBM.

Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  andy a

Realistically we have no idea what NATO true position is. History makes me wonder, considering things like the US being the only country to use a nuke against another country and the UK have developed and forward deployed nuclear mines to holt any russian movement into Western Europe during the cold war (you can see them in the museum in Richmond).

My guess is if full out war broke out between NATO and Russia or US and China etc, the gloves would be off and all bets out the window.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  andy a

I think there would be a couple more steps in there. NATO would use tactical nuclear weapons as a response, but the next set of responses would possibly be a strategic weapon ( likely in Europe, probably against a none nuclear smaller NATO player). NATO would then get to the will they respond with a strategic response and end the human race.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

NATO can use accurate conventional warpons to destroy nuclear weapons or sites, in order to prevent the use of nuclear weapons.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

To attack another nations nuclear weapons is consider a trigger for a strategic response as its an opening play of a first strike.

you can’t neutralise the entire nuclear triad and then the world ends. Not a clever move.

Its why every nuclear power has sub launched nuclear missiles its a dead mans handle.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  andy a

No, the US revised them in 2018 Nuclear Posture
Review to counter use of tactical nukes.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

“Russia plans to deploy KALIBR capability on all new design construction nuclear and non-nuclear submarines, corvettes, frigates, and larger surface ships. KALIBR provides even modest platforms, such as corvettes, with significant offensive capability and, with the use of the land attack missile, all platforms have a significant ability to hold distant fixed ground targets at risk using conventional warheads. The proliferation of this capability within the new Russian Navy is profoundly changing its ability to deter, threaten or destroy adversary targets. It can be logically assumed that KALIBR capability will be retrofitted on those larger Soviet legacy ships and submarines… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

UK Royal Air Force announces retirement destinations of its BAe146 fleet24 JANUARY 2022

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/terror-insurgent-group/latest/uk-royal-air-force-announces-retirement-destinations-of-its-bae146-fleet

Meanwhile. A trend we need to reverse PDQ. Spain has just placed an order for 20 new Typhoons, could we not do the same in light of current events?

Russian Aerospace Forces received two more Su-57 in late 202124 JANUARY 2022

“The third and fourth production Su-57 aircraft were delivered to the Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS) in late 2021. They were among 77 aircraft delivered to the Russian Armed Forces during the year.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/terror-insurgent-group/latest/russian-aerospace-forces-received-two-more-su-57-in-late-2021

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I always thought the BAE 146 aircraft were great little aircraft. They fill a nice role between a big transport and a helicopter. I thought they would be in high demand but I’m not party to the loads required to be carried by the raf and how often.
I did hear the queen wasn’t that keen on them but that could be a lot of rubbish.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

A personal favourite of mine which I travelled on weekly at one point for some years between London and Europe.

Safest aircraft I flew on, well at least I always felt safe! The thought of four engines helped somewhat.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

We are buying more F35’s. Funding major Typhoon enhancements, Loyal wingman capability and hopefully Tempest. We don’t have the money to do all that, and buy more Typhoons that wouldn’t be in service for years. Spain has less capable Typhoons compared to the RAF version, and ageing Hornet’s. And no F35. Yet.

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Hi Nigel . The Spanish Tranche 4 Typhoons are replacing F18s, so no force expansion. I hear they are planning a second order , currently deferred.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Hi Klonkie, I seem to recall the same, clearly no interest in the F-35 it appears.

November 12, 2021

Spain Rejects F-35 Stealth Jets; Focus Shifts On Eurofighter Typhoon, Next-Gen Future Combat Aircraft Program

“Spain has put to rest all speculation about buying the American F-35 stealth fighter aircraft after the spokesperson of its Defense Ministry clarified to the press that all Spanish energies were focused on the FCAS, which it has been keenly pursuing alongside France and Germany.

https://eurasiantimes.com/spain-rejects-f-35-jets-focus-shifts-on-fcas-eurofighter/

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Full rate production delays and Block lV software delays, now scheduled for 2029 clearly hasn’t helped in making the F-35 a useful addition to their fleet of fighters with 6th Gen expected at the beginning of 2030. “Delivery of these 20 new Eurofighters is scheduled to take place from 2025 to 2030.” https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/spain-approves-eurofighter-buy-upgrades “Operational analysis has indicated that the even-more-advanced Block 4 configuration is necessary to be effective in a conflict with China,” the report states. “However, challenges with maturing all of the Block 4 technologies has slid delivery of the full Block IV suite to at least 2029, and this is a… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Thanks Nigel.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

Russia,if needs be will use all means at their disposal,btw they have already moved Iskander into theatre.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

The problem with Iskander is that it has a range of conventional warheads as well as nuclear war heads. It’s one of those platforms that could create confusion as the west will not know if it’s a tactical nuclear strike or conventional strike until it lands. Its one of the main reasons against the idea of replacing our Nuclear ballistic missile submarines with a Nuclear tipped cruise missile Option ( apart from it being easier to combat against with air defences).

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

The US responed to this Russian tactic in the 2018 Nuclear Posture
Review.

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Gareth
Gareth
2 months ago

All feels very late in the day. Air units being deployed in April, countries “considering” whether to send troops, Ukrainian navy beefed over next few years. Just feels worryingly lacklustre given that, theoretically, Russian tanks could be heading for Kyiv next week.

Last edited 2 months ago by Gareth
Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

It’s lackluster, because NATO has no intention to get involved. Whether NATO will massively strengthen its forces on the eastern border following the invasion, to stop Russia not stopping with Ukraine, is anyone’s guess. At a guess there will be a token force moved there but not anything significant.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Hi Steve, I would agree with your assessment. NATO has a tough line to walk between deterrence and apparent aggression here. Last thing we need to do is provide Putin with pictures of 100’s of NATO tanks massing in the Baltic states, that would be a quick way of giving him the political excuse and ‘evidence’ to go all in on the Ukraine. Of course, if he invades anyway then the call becomes even more complex for NATO. The way I see it is that NATO members will go all in on sanctions and move some extra ‘tripwire’ forces into… Read more »

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
2 months ago

The Spanish have an enclave on the other side of the Gibraltar Strait at Ceuta. Ceuta is under the jurisdiction of Spain but operates as an autonomous city, meaning it and neighbouring Melilla are not included in the treaties of NATO. Since 2010, the Spanish – a NATO member – have allowed more than 80 Russian warships to dock at Ceuta including Russian SSN. The North Africa territory regularly hosts Putin’s warships transiting between the Middle East, the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea. The Straits of Gibraltar are one of the most strategic maritime choke points on the planet.… Read more »

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

No not helpful. One of the problems with NATO, I see, is that only the UK agree with the US.

David Barry
David Barry
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

And Canada? Latvia? Estonia? Lithuania? There’s more…

Grant
Grant
2 months ago

I wonder if we should be looking to de-escalate this with a deal which saves face all round. We could agree that Ukraine didn’t join NATO as long as it remains democratic and free. This was the deal struck with the Soviets for Austria (hence why it was never divided up) and I believe the reason Finland and Sweden have never looked to join. Its imperfect but beats a puppet regime / a war on the borders of the EU.

Jay R
Jay R
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

That would be the equivalent of letting Russia decide who does and doesn’t join NATO.

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

I share that sentiment, but the reality is Russia has the upper hand. Its a piece of realpolitik which (a much stronger NATO) has done in the past in order to prevent Russia feeling encircled. Feels like the lesser evil of say having a puppet regime or an armed conflict which most of NATO is ill prepared for.

John Clark
John Clark
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

It would be a huge mistake to appease Putin Grant. Russia would see it as a green light to crack on and do as they pleased, unfortunately it’s the prevailing attitude in the Kremlin. You have to make them back down, hopefully it will be enough make Putin have a “roller skate at the top of the stairs” type accident… An invasion into Ukraine will be extremely costly and what’s the end game? How does Russia then extract itself from the situation? An increasingly destabilising insurgency, an extremely expensive occupation, murderous international sanctions and Finland and Sweden clambering to join… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  John Clark

Hi John,

I have heard Russia being warned by many Western politicians that invading the Ukraine would be a very bloody business. Whilst that may be the case I do have some doubts.

The balance of forces appears to favour Russia to my eyes and from what little has been shown the Russia’s also appear to have the advantage in terms of weight of firepower as well. Certainly the Russian Air Force is better equipped.

My fear is that Ukraine may well suffer a similar fate as Poland did in 1939. I hope I am wrong, but…

Cheers CR

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Jay R

The thing is I would agree with you if there was any likelihood of Ukraine actually ever joining NATO, but in reality it’s never getting through the requirements of article10. So this is actually about principle not reality. The reality is this is not about Ukraine’s sovereign right to join NATO as it does not have a right to do so ( any NATO nation can veto for any reason at all). This is about NATOs ability to admit any nation it so wishes to admit that passes all it’s cultural and security tests. So this is a question of… Read more »

Ian M
Ian M
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

That’s being “free” though, is it? Other countries negotiating whether or not your democracy can join a mutual defence organisation.

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  Ian M

No its not. But its would leave the Ukraine more free the the Russian taking over 2/3rds of the country…

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

Putin wants all of Ukraine, weither or not declaring neutrality! Russia wants its ports and industry for more military expansion.

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

Its ports are run down and Russia has Crimea with a road and rail bridge so doesn’t need them, whilst the industry is in ruins with skilled staff either in the EU or Russia.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

Agree – ive been thinking a lot lately of a new Alliance of Non Alligned Nations that would provide the so – called buffer that Russia laments,and which could have good relationships with Countries both East and West.

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

It would be something worth pursuing: you at least defang the Russians encirclement rhetoric…

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

The Club of Non Alligned Nations is a joke! NATO is the best defense club you can get, it’s been around for over 70 years.

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

It wouldn’t help long-term.

The EU is expansionist in nature, and Ukraine is keen to get on the gravy train of EU grants to Eastern European nations.
However;
• the EU now has a military aspect, with member nations expected to come to the defence of other members if attacked
• Russia regards EU membership as a stepping stone to NATO membership, regardless of whether that’s accurate or not.

So reassurances from NATO about not allowing Ukrainian membership would be worthless if the above happens.

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  Sean

But would it not buy time. Everything is as good as its going to get for Putin right now: dependence on his gas, a completely ineffectual president (and political turmoil in the two strongest European military powers). If the storm could be weathered, we get our energy policy sorted and the allied nations start working together a bit better….

Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

Well it might buy time if we can hope Putin will deposed in the near future… Though ‘giving in’ to his demands will strengthen his position domestically, making it less lightly. His domestic image is of a strongman standing up for Russia, avoiding that image being tarnished will be his number one priority. So the West is in a no-win situation. Concede and we strengthen his position domestically, stand firm and he has to act to preserve his authority. It’s the EU that is dependent on his gas, Germany in particular. And while they need Putin’s gas, he needs the… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago

The reason why NATO is sending warships I presume?

“Evidence indicates activity from all of Russia’s major regional commands, and Moscow has also signalled that it will move a large number of surface vessels, including six landing ship tanks (LSTs), a cruiser, and a destroyer, into the Mediterranean Sea, where they could easily continue into the Black Sea.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/defence/latest/russian-build-up-on-ukrainian-border-enters-new-stage

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
Steve M
Steve M
2 months ago

My concern is Putin will jump up and use theses deployments as ‘evidence’ of the NATO threat as an excuse to attack!

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve M

It’s a chicken and egg scenario that he’s created, do nothing and I’ll move in, do something and I’ll use this as an excuse too.

Only Putin decides what happens next, so by doing something positive the hope is it will deter him from making the wrong choice.

Last edited 2 months ago by Nigel Collins
David Lloyd
David Lloyd
2 months ago

Johnson’s savage defence cuts have now come home to roost. Our Challenger II tanks have been dismantled awaiting an upgrade. The Royal Artillery with its AS90 system is completely outgunned by the Russians. The British Army has been reduced to 20,000 infantry. The RAF has only about 50 airworthy Typhoon fighters (with the rest in bits awaiting spare parts) and their advanced ECRS MK2 AESA radar is two years away. We will be paying off another two frigates this year. Our minehunter/minesweeper force has already gone. Our excellent Tornado bombers with their ECM capability have been scrapped. Yet we blew… Read more »

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

These cuts happened a long time before Boris was an MP let alone PM….

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

Read the latest SDSR. johnson and Cameron absolutely emasculated our military. Even 15 years ago we had two armoured divisions and a field army of 150,000

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

SDSR 2010 completely eviscerated our armed forces… at the time it was written Boris was Mayor of London. He’s a CUTHO but not everything is his fault.

Roy
Roy
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

The series of defence cuts over the past two decades have put Britain in an untenable position. British capability is completely inconsequential when it comes to actually defending a country like Ukraine – or for defending the Baltic states for that matter. In the event of a peer-on-peer conflict, British forces would be hard pressed just to defend the UK itself and the air and sea approaches – including the Baltic approaches and the GIUK gap. That is why UK rhetoric on Ukraine is largely empty. That doesn’t mean that UK rhetoric won’t get the country into trouble, just that… Read more »

Grant
Grant
2 months ago
Reply to  Roy

Yes our forces have been cut far too much, but at no point in the last 100+ years would we be able to take on the Russians in their own backyard…. Even in the Cold War the BOAR was a road block to buy time for the US to get to Europe. The issue is that collectively the whole of Europe has decimated their armed forces, over relying on the US despite the fact they often go through bouts of isolationism….

Knight7572
Knight7572
2 months ago
Reply to  Grant

Frankly, this should be a wake-up and a slap of reality to the politicians who believe the End of History

Roy
Roy
2 months ago
Reply to  Knight7572

That “End of History” article by Fukuyama in the 90s did an immense diservice to the West. We were severely damaged by that way of thinking and now we are paying the price. A lot of people (as witnessed in much of the commentary on Ukraine) remain trapped by this ideology and fail to appreciate that the West has far overreached itself while simultaneously cutting its capabilities. The chickens are coming home to roost.

Knight7572
Knight7572
2 months ago
Reply to  Roy

And how many of us innocent civilians will’ve to suffer to prove that

Last edited 2 months ago by Knight7572
Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
2 months ago
Reply to  Roy

You are right as we cannot even defend our own shores let alone any one else’s shores.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Perhaps the current situation will be the wake up call that our Govt needs and finally put more priority into Defence.

Farouk
Farouk
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Paul wrote:

Perhaps the current situation will be the wake up call that our Govt needs and finally put more priority into Defence.

Then the best thing in which to see increased miltary spending is for:

Russia to launch an attack on the Ukraine

For China to launch an attack on Taiwan

For Iran to block the straits of Hormuz

Only then will the West (never mind the UK) wake up to the fact that going woke makes you broke regards national defence. But something tells me the Uk won’t do a thing and continue on its downward spiral

peter Wait
peter Wait
2 months ago
Reply to  Farouk

If China takes Taiwan they would have strangle hold on the worlds advanced silicon chip market (Taiwan 92%) this must be worrying to the Americans!

Tams
Tams
2 months ago
Reply to  peter Wait

If the CCP (because they are the PRC) invade China, there won’t be any silicon manufacturing capacity left.

And the silicon made there doesn’t really matter to defence procurement. The US at least, requires all silicon for defence proposes to be manufactured in the US by trusted partners. And it’s not on the lastest nodes like consumer stuff is.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Can we squeeze some additional funding for our armed forces?

Forecasts for the UK economy: a comparison of independent forecasts 

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1048045/Forecomp_January_2022.pdf

Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

£37 billion wasn’t spent on Track and Trace https://fullfact.org/online/37bn-test-trace-spending/ Actually spending came in considerably below that. The budget also includes all the PCR and lateral-flow tests sent out and processed, setting up the labs to process these, and funds sent to local councils to pay those who are self isolating. Our Tornadoes were excellent, in the 1990’s. They’re now obsolete which is why the only operator is Germany; which is notorious for poor equipment, and even they are looking to retire it. You say “our minehunter/ minesweeper has already gone”, which is strange as we currently have • 6 Hunt… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Sean

Yep, some corrections stated there.

Plenty more, but cannot be bothered!

Any comments on cuts that do not include Labour’s ones from 97 to 2010 in the equation are here political point scoring and invalid.

All governments have been bad on defence. At least this one’s increasing budget, and hopefully some goodies to come.

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
2 months ago
Reply to  Sean

£37 billion wasted on NHS T&T is a widely quoted figure. Whatever it was it’s a lot of money.

According to Wikipedia, Germany has 94 IDS and 28 ECR aircraft remaining in service. Italy still has 70 A-200 and 5 EA-200 aircraft remaining and Saudi Arabia has 81 IDS Tornado. I believe they were active over Yemen last week.

I’ll give you the mine countermeasures vessels. I read that on another site

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

As I was on 2 MCMV ships today they are still here and in use. .
Tornado is still in use by KSA… (Weather dependent You can occasionally hear them taking off from Dharan and I live over 30 miles away across the water) but spares are a big issue for the Tonkas as they are for Typhoon… (Thank Germany for that). There are not 81 serviceable aircraft. They are in use over Yemen and there ability to hit targets in all weather with accuracy is well regarded. Their availability is considerably better than the F15.

Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Something being widely quoted doesn’t make it true. If that were the case, we’d still think the earth is flat.

The Wikipedia entries are several years out of date, but yes it does appear the Italians are still operating some. Which must be embarrassing for them as they don’t have the excuse of needing an aircraft certified for American nuclear bombs which the Luftwaffe has.
Congratulations on proving the stopped clock theory, though all you’ve proven is that the Luftwaffe isn’t alone in operating obsolete aircraft.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Sean

Thanks for reminding me on this!

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Think you need to do some fact checking, considering the costs of the pandemic somehow he has increased defence spending overall.

Now consider the alternative that Corbyn had got in, what would we be dealing with now?

Id suggest you go back in time another decade or so to discuss the word ‘savage’ in relation to defence cuts.

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  James

👍

Airborne
Airborne
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

SDSR 2010 is the one which really screwed us up, up till then there were cuts but nothing as savage as 2010. Politicos don’t give a shit about defence, no votes in it, and all parties are as bad.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Completely agree. Up until that point the critical mass in some areas was still there and could be topped up as needed. At least the 96-98 defence review gave some direction for some of the services. Carriers etc, no more tactical nukes, smaller more useable forces. Since then I’m not too sure where the direction of travel is going. Hopefully those at the top have got it mostly right. Until the poop hits the fan it’s hard to tell The problems mainly arise from an ever increase in costs that is massively above the normal inflation. cost of equipment is… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Completely agree. Up until that point the critical mass in some areas was still there and could be topped up as needed.”

Only some areas!

35 Escorts to 23.
23 Fast Jet Squadrons to 12.
15 SSN to 8, then 7.

All on Labours watch.

The army escaped because of ongoing Afghan and Iraq ops but its artillery and tanks were being cut for years already. See “Future Army Structures.”

The Army cuts of 2010 were a killer, as were RN enabling cuts and the MPA’s.

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago

Morning D – I hold Tony Blair responsible as the starting catalyst for the cuts back in 2003.People have short memories.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Yes, 2004 “new chapter ” of the SDSR98 was awful. Cuts cuts cuts. Damned Tories!!!! 🤣

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

The Rot started with Options For Change – it went downhill quite rapidly from there.

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Spot on Paul. I recall the general theme in the early 1990’s was to maintain circa 50% force levels across the services. So much for that ,the RAF went from 31 combat jet sqns to 9 .

Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

To be fair to Blair – who I think is a war criminal over Iraq – most nations and politicians believed that the fall of communism represented the “end of history”. The West had triumphed and as democracies don’t declare war on each other, they believed a “peace dividend” could be reaped by scaling back large militaries that were no-longer needed.
How naive we all proved to be…

“Si vis pacem, para bellum”

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Sean

I agree Sean. I think Blair wanted to balance out the costs of a prolonged presence in Afghanistan, so this would have helped, For what it’s worth, the force levels seemed about right to me ,some 50% of 1980s Levels for the RN and RAF.

On the Iraq war criminal front, the one with blood on his hands is Dick Cheney, followed closely by Donald Rumsfeld. .

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago

Well a lot of those things took place in the 2004 review which was under Geoff Hoon. The 98 review did a good job and left the scope the scale up to pre options for change levels if needed. 2004 review really cut things right back 12 type 45 to 6 etc etc and 2010 just followed on. The main issues would of been had replacement kit been prepared to be purchased to keep things at the 98 level. So to get back to a 98 levels would take at least 5 year’s minimum and a huge bucket load of… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Some truth in there.
And other parts not correct at all.

Rob
Rob
2 months ago

I think we need to deploy a greater understanding of Russian history and the nature of dictatorships in our decision making. Putin is 70 years old and is looking for a popular legacy so that he can arrange for his safe retirement from office (bear in mind the overwhelming majority of dictators end their days on the end of a rope or in front of a firing squad). His view is that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a disaster for Russia. He’s not only concerned with controlling a buffer zone to prevent a Napoleonic / WW1 / WW2… Read more »

DanielMorgan
DanielMorgan
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob

First- Germany will not agree to meaningful sanctions as long as Russia controls its energy supply. France won’t agree to them because they’re France. Second – You aren’t going to stop a Russian combined arms invasion of Ukraine by just sending arms. You need sophisticated arms and training. The best option should Russia invade is to provide arms for a guerilla campaign that can turn Ukraine into another Chechnya or Afghanistan. Third- The UK has no credible ground forces it can send to shore up the Eastern flank. The UK unilaterally disarmed and is now demanding that other nations do… Read more »

Rob
Rob
2 months ago
Reply to  DanielMorgan

Hi Daniele, I disagree. Germany & France. Look they can either have EU defence and pay for it or they can remain, especially Germany, behind the American shield. Truth is they need to make their minds up and quickly in the present situation. If it is the latter then the gas pipeline has to go. Yes Ukraine can’t stop a Russian invasion but they sure as hell can make sure many thousands of Russians go home in body bags; it will not be a walk over. Even after that the Ukrainians can and will resist and that will cost Putin.… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob

Wrong Daniel, Rob. 😉

Rob
Rob
2 months ago

Sorry.

Sean
Sean
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob

The majority of the cash Putin has stolen from Russia is held in trust for him by his oligarch friends, most of that money is outside Russia. Rather than make the Russian population suffer further through general sanctions, freezing the accounts and seizing control of the assets held by these oligarchs will have a greater impact on Putin.
Of course any politician in the West suggesting this risks encountering some polonium in their tea or novichok on their door handle.

Mark Franks
Mark Franks
2 months ago

As I have said before, mission creep. The British people are now being buttered up on a possible troop deployment to defend Ukraine from any act of aggression from Russia.
Be prepared this is going to happen right up to the wire.
I personally know we have to support and defend a sovereign country from this threat especially in the European theatre.
We have to understand how we have got to this point in the first place, maybe then all sides can row back and diffuse a very dangerous time. Kennedy and Khrushchev managed to do this Remember.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Mark Franks

Under no circumstances will we deploy troops to Ukraine it’s just not going to happen

Mark franks
Mark franks
2 months ago
Reply to  James

Okay and I respect your opinion.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  James

We already have some there training Ukrainian forces. I think sending troops would be the right thing, though recent cuts have neutered much of our capabilities.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

If Russia treated its neighbours well then they’d be far more inclined to support her. That most want little to do with her is her own making.

dave12
dave12
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Exactly!!!!!!

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Spot on. There are some who think he’s a strategic genius but everything he does makes Russias position in the future far worse. Sweden and Finland are seriously considering whether to join NATO and Ukraine has gone from being split dpwn the middle between pro Russia or pro West to violently anti Russian. On top of all that the standard of living and average life expectancy of the average Russian has been falling for a decade. Yeah he’s definitely a genius.

Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Mark Franks

Sending a few thousand troops wouldn’t make much difference to the outcome. To send some SAM’s with capability to shoot down some expensive Russian aircraft could make a difference.

Last edited 2 months ago by Meirion x
Mark franks
Mark franks
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

You underestimate the capability of professionally trained soldiers. The mission would likely be US led believe me the army would be itching to have boots on the ground it would mean they are back in the game. The Navy and Air Force are being invested heavily in future expenditure and the army has taken a hit. Future wars we were told would be high tech centric wars, the UK would once again become a global player bigger Navy, the Air Force equipt with Loyal wing man drones and new high tech weapons. Funny that now we find ourselves in a… Read more »

Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

I totally agree about sending SAM systems.

As for sending a few thousand troops, it depends on what troops you’re talking about and what hardware they have at their disposal. A few thousand troops where every other man has an anti-tank weapon and a MANPADS could make quite a bit of a difference imo.

Also send loads of engineers to build tank ditches and tank barriers (dragons’ teeth, Czech hedgehogs, felled trees, mine fields, all ideally booby-trapped).

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
James
James
2 months ago

Said this on a previous post and I’ll say it again, it’s time NATO really reinforced the Baltics not with meaningless tripwire forces but actual manpower and equipment ready to fight rather than having to wait for more reinforcements by which point it would be to late.
Years of complaining about being encircled when they definitely have not, well it’s about time we gave them something real to complain about.

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  James

If you wanted to go that way, the response isn’t troops in the Baltic. The response is nuclear submarines north of Murmansk. It’s carriers and LHAs sailing north from Japan. Many of the troops on the Ukrainian border have been shipped west all the way across Russia, leaving the Pacific coast less well protected. I’m sure there are some islands that Japan and Russia argue over that look pretty vulnerable right now. Some US-Japanese exercises next to those islands with amphibious attack groups might be in order. If the US wanted another page from the Putin playbook, how about an… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Jon
Bob
Bob
2 months ago
Reply to  Jon

Not a bad call

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago

I wonder if we will see the Prince of Wales air wing strengthened by a USMC F35 squadron. I would imagine it’s deployment as a flag ship was going to be F35 light, but putting a F35 squadron on the northern flank would make a big statement.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Slightly off-topic.

Updated 0607 GMT (1407 HKT) January 25, 2022

7 injured after F-35 jet crashes on aircraft carrier in South China Sea
“An F-35C Lightning II, assigned to the “Argonauts” of Strike Fighter Squadron 147, prepared to launch off the flight deck of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and an F-35C Lightning II, assigned to the “Black Knights” Marine Strike Fighter Squadron 314, prepared to launch off the flight deck of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln January 22, 2022.”

https://edition.cnn.com/2022/01/24/politics/f-35-pilot-eject-south-china-sea/index.html

Ron Stateside
Ron Stateside
2 months ago

Over here, 8,500 US troops were put on a pre-deployment alert yesterday. Russian stock market lost 8% and hit a 14 month low. US Cyber Command is likely to be operational in a way we’ve never seen before should something go down. If they cut the cables off the Irish coast I don’t think an Astute should sink the Russian fleet. Better to wait for world opinion to turn against Putin’s Russia and then sink their fleet on the way back to port. I wonder what the Oligarchs are saying behind the little old man’s back?

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  Ron Stateside

It depends whether they decide they’d be richer without him than they would be with him. Then things will get interesting. 😉

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
2 months ago
Reply to  Ron Stateside

One way to find out is to freeze all the money presently being laundered through the UK via the stock exchange and building going up around London

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

Who’d have thought all that Russian “oligarch” money flooding into the City of London since the 1990’s might have consequences! Lol. The greed, incompetance & stupidity of those deluded to think they’re fit to rule us is truely staggering.

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Makes you wonder if that is why our armed forces have been gutted over the last 20 years!!

Ron
Ron
2 months ago

Here is a question, What would happen if NATO put Article 5 cover over the Ukraine, not to base troops in the country but under a NATO protective umbrella.
Yes Putin might jump up and down but as I said no troops to be based in the Ukraine, so it is a purly defensive measure. If Ukraine attacked Russia which they never would then the defensive Article 5 would not come into effect. However if Russia attacked then Artilce 5 is activated. Surely no one can complain about a non aggressive defence.

Paul T
Paul T
2 months ago
Reply to  Ron

Then that would be the start of World War 3,no other outcome.

Matt C
Matt C
2 months ago

The French must be quite stretched though given their Africa commitments.

Farouk
Farouk
2 months ago
Reply to  Matt C

Reducing their numbers in Mali and yesterday the leaders of Mali told Denmark to remove their troops. Seeing as the Junta there which took power by a coup have turned to Moscow, meanwhile next door in Burkina Faso  a coup has just taken place.

I do have to ask if they had a hand in this:

Opera Snapshot_2022-01-25_171216_www.france24.com.png
Last edited 2 months ago by Farouk
Tom Keane
Tom Keane
2 months ago

To be honest, it’s a pretty feeble response from NATO countries thus far. If I were in Putin’s place, and a gambling man, I’d cross the Ukrainian border, as it could be the straw that breaks the back of NATO.

I wonder if NATO has considered this?

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

Putin -shades of 1938 Germany all over again, looks like Czechoslovakia

Supporitve Bloke
Supporitve Bloke
2 months ago

I wonder if this increasing tension gives 1SL the leverage to get Mk41 VLS into the T31 and increase munitions stockpiles? I would be amazed if various things had not been quietly ordered in the background from more Aster to Ceptor as these are in current production increasing stock depth is not the biggest deal in the world. Ceptor in particulate is used and is to be used across so many platforms that an increase in stockpile is needed anyway. At least adding Mk 41 VLS to T31 is something that:- a) can be done in reasonably short order; b)… Read more »

Pete
Pete
2 months ago

It’s in the short term (1-3 year horizon) that we need more capability. Force multipliers that could more readily be rolled out in that timetable would be: 1. procure interim cannister based AshM (no major structural reengineering) for type 23 and type 45 2. procure P8 AshM 3. Provide Wildcat with dipping sonar and two-way data links 4. Upgun a couple of River Batch 2s adding a 40 or 57mm with smart ammo as well as the 30mm. Use Rivers for gulf escort duties freeing a frigate pending Type 31. Could also bolt on a CAMM Container. Undertake requisite CMS… Read more »

fearlesstunafish
fearlesstunafish
2 months ago

my honest conclusion from all recent geopolitical movements is that the world is currently is currently living out the beginnning of a tom clancy novel….

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago

The problem is that Joe Biden has that on his bedside table and keeps rereading it obsessively wanting to be the hero. Vlad also has a copy and wonders if he can stir up that much trouble now he simply doesn’t care about world opinion. Xi has a copy and us terrified that Vlad will upset his carefully constructed economic dismantling of western values which was working so well. However, Xi sees an updated that if Vlad does overstep he can join with the West and impose sanctions on Russia. He can then do a back door deal for jet… Read more »

SwindonSteve
SwindonSteve
2 months ago

Very good!

Pete
Pete
2 months ago

Brilliant. And if you haven’t seen it yet watch the Norwegian language TV drama ‘occupied’. Much of what is playing out now was predicted in that series of a few years back…Russia, EU, Germany, UK, Energy policies etc.

Supporitve Bloke
Supporitve Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

Yes, I have seen it. The energy policy crowbar is so predictable. Trouble is, Vlad is in a use-it-now-or-loose-it-forever situation. When the UK has new nuclear and even more wind and solar as well as some gas storage back online then the threats will mean less. What is the result of these crazy energy prices insulation is now THE thing solar panels are popping up on a lot more houses Now OK you will say that it doesn’t make much difference. I live in a mid sized victorian house. During lockdown changing the last few windows and improving insulation decreased… Read more »

Supporitve Bloke
Supporitve Bloke
2 months ago

Sorry about all the typos and lack of punctuation but it was a stream of conciseness onto my phone in the back of the car on the way back from meeting.

Best read in the voice and with the pacing of Rory Bremner for full effect!

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

Well done SB, that’s huge reduction on your carbon footprint. Unfortunately our leaders cling to old polluting sources & many can’t afford such measures.
Many of my posts also suffer from frantic typing. My fingers seem to be too big & my keys too small.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Whisky I DO NOT agree with Insulate Britain and it’s tactics: I do think there is a need to insulate Britain!

There jolly well should be loads of grants to replace glazing with high spec stuff – some of the ‘80s double glazing isn’t much use.

Loft insulation is a no brainer with very rapid paybacks.

I own a couple of construction companies and TBH the standard of insulation in most older homes is dreadful.

The main gain in my house was really decent spec double glazing and loft insulation. So no rocket science there.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago

I think there is a strategy that’s been missed or could of been implemented sooner. That would of been to bulk up troops etc at the eastern side of nato. Then fingers crossed if putin is looking for a solution troop numbers can fall on both sides without him seen to be losing.
It will take a cleverer man than me to know what putins intentions are. If he’s set on war then not much is going to put him off.

DP
DP
2 months ago

The old cold-war irony coming to light from Russia where facts are twisted to suit their own goals with words to the effect of “….. NATO are the aggressor ….”. You only have to lift out the key statement in this article to hit the nail on the head “…..There were no (overseas) NATO forces in the eastern part of the Alliance before 2014.” …. so, just remind me, what happened in 2014? Separatists, backed by Russia took control of parts of a sovereign state. No wonder the eastern-European members of NATO got nervous about Russia’s intent and asked for… Read more »

Airborne
Airborne
2 months ago

Let’s hope all this aggressive sabre rattling by Putin and his dependent cronies, gives the Western democratic nations and NATO in particular a wake up call that the so called peace dividend has long gone and we need to take defence seriously, and ensure the funding and planning to improve our forces starts moving forward. Putin is a dick, and I’m sure his ogliarch cronies, aren’t happy about all this as it could impact their profits and fortunes in the West. And they, are, therefore our best hope to ensure Putin “retires”……

David Flandry
David Flandry
2 months ago

A frigate, 4 fighters, 2 fighters? I doubt Russia will be worried.

Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  David Flandry

The US is rumoured to be considering moving 50k troops to the region, which would holt any thoughts by Russia of pushing further west after Ukraine.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

Ch5’s Warship showed HMS Northumberland trying to deal with a Russian task group close to N Ireland with no AShMs on board & then buzzed at low altitude by a Russian Bear. It would be sunk by Russian AShMs before it got near enough to use either its 4.5in gun against surface ships or engage the Bear with Sea Ceptor SAMs. Time to stump up the cash to provide our warships with the capability every other navy has on their escorts.
Why wasn’t the Bear picked up by our QRF Typhoons long before it was discovered by Northumberland?

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

I would think all to be seen to make good tv. Wouldn’t be very exciting if captain says Norway picked up a bear flying this way. Be with us in 2 hours. 1 hour later raf are escorting a Tu-142 down Scotland’s coast. It will fly over is soon. 30 mins later it’s 50 miles away we can hear in coming.
It was much more dramatic on the programme. Alarms going off bear incoming. Dropping altitude, action stations.

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

And it will help justify in general society the need to spend extra. There is a threat on ‘your’ doorstep.

Albert Starburst
Albert Starburst
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Dramatic needs of TV aside, It looked like to me, (and sounded from the dialogue) that the Russian warship/spy-ship came to just 8-miles off the coast of NI, and then called in the Russian aircraft to buzz Northumberland (mock attack from 23k ft down to 500ft flypast) at the same position. No disrespect to the boys and girls aboard Northumberland as they are just the last cog in the wheel, but the whole thing was a total embarrassment despite the skipper trying to put a positive spin at the end. Could somebody explain to me why this is allowed to… Read more »

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago

The scene showed GPMGs & 30mm guns being readied, despite them being useless against such a threat. 4.5″ could do a job but of course, but by the time a Bear is that close the ship would’ve been toast from AShMs. It always apalled me when the light AAA positions where replaced with guns incapable of effective AA ability. As if there’s not light AA that can also tackle small fast attack boats.
One of the lessons learned the hard way in the Falklands war was insufficient AAA, yet soon forgotten.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

The 30mm are effective CIWS – they would be highly effective against most incoming missiles.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago

Realistically any aircraft coming from Russia is picked up by radar, eyes on the ground a long way from the uk. The flight time of a typhoon going full whack from Lossiemouth to anywhere needed is really fast. If a Russian aircraft is flying where it is allowed what can be done except shadow it. Can’t shoot it, can’t stop it. We also send aircraft near Russia’s borders and we expect them to be civil as well. While it is concerning to some it’s just the way it is. Now if 50 aircraft coming flying down that’s when the panic… Read more »

Ewiak Ryszard
Ewiak Ryszard
2 months ago

The disciples asked Jesus an interesting question: “Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign when all these things shall begin to be fulfilled?” (Mark 13:4, Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition) He answered: “But ye will hear of wars and rumours of wars. See that ye be not disturbed; for all [these things] must take place, but it is not yet the fulfillment [of the sign].” (Matthew 24:6) The global nuclear war, (this will be the fulfillment of the sign of Jesus), will start with an ethnic conflict: “For nation will rise against nation”, like as… Read more »

Daddy Mack
Daddy Mack
2 months ago
Reply to  Ewiak Ryszard

Praise the Lord, pass the ammunition. God wants you to go to War

Ewiak Ryszard
Ewiak Ryszard
2 months ago
Reply to  Daddy Mack

Jesus said, “Put your sword back into its place. For all who take the sword will perish by the sword.”

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
2 months ago
Reply to  Ewiak Ryszard

The saying “all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword” is only found in the Gospel of Matthew and not in any of the other gospels. The Latin version refers to the weapon as a gladius, while the Greek version refers to it as a makhaira. Before the printing press was invented by Guttenberg in 1440, the bible was re-written multiple times by various popes to support their own politics and beliefs. Like the genocide of the Albigensians/Cathars for heresy in 1209–1229, when thousands of men, women and children were put to the sword on the order… Read more »

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Ewiak Ryszard

He had some foresight. Now if only the bible had the answers to fix these issues we can all be saved.
The power of a few will decide all our fates. (Monkey spanker 1:1)
Thank you and good night,

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  Ewiak Ryszard

Don’t tell me…Judas is played by someone with a German accent, the disciples translates to the representatives of the North Atlantic Council. Question is who ends up being crucified….Boris, Biden, Trump, Putin….or the people of Ukraine 🤔

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 months ago

Time for UK to deploy some heavy metal (if he can) and start some exercises in Poland/Baltics.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Donaldson

I don’t think an iron maiden concert will be of much help 😂😂😂

grizzler
grizzler
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I’m sure if they were to play some distance behind the Russian line their troops may decide to ignore their forward positions and go off an watch em instead -job done 🙂

Jay
Jay
2 months ago

This is hardly a show of force, everyone scared to escalate the situation

Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago

Ukraine desperately needs modern land-based mobile SAM systems (of varying ranges) as it only has a few S-300 systems. There are several US and European systems that could be sent.

Subs in the Black Sea with TLAMs would be very useful since TLAM has the range to cover the whole of Ukraine. Plus subs could prevent amphibious landings.

MLRS launchers wouldn’t go amiss either.

Finally loads of engineers to build extensive tank ditches and to create tank barriers (dragons’ teeth, Czech hedgehogs, felled trees, mine fields, ideally all booby-trapped) would also be very useful.

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Humpty Dumpty

Ukraine has a variety of SAMs left over from the past including BUKs, not up to date but potentially dangerous. No current NATO subs can enter the Black Sea but surface ships can bring in TLAMs. Ukraine has plenty of MLRS from 122mm to 300mm as well as significant amounts of engineering hardware.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

Unless Turkey has some form of acoustic array across the straits, there is really very little they can do if a dived SM were to enter the Black Sea.
The trick is getting in and out without being noticed.

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

I would suggest that, as it is so simple to over that distance, that they do, if only to monitor Russian submarines. If having spotted a sub and been forewarned its a ‘friendly’ if they said anything its is a different issue. Now if the Russians then found it………………

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

A bit tongue in cheek on my part, it would be v difficult for a SSN as the Dardanelles is fairly shallow, although I believe a SM did manage to get through the minefields during WW1. The point being it is possible, but very little to be gained, as you have to get out again. Launching cruise missiles from aircraft would be just as effective as from a SM in the Black sea, any maritime assets bar the Kilos can be dealt with just as effectively by air assets.

JohninMK
JohninMK
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Yes, air launch over say Romania would be as effective as a ship or sub launch, apart perhaps from a mass launch. The aircraft would probably be less vulnerable too.

Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

The only problem with surface ships launching TLAMs is that they’d be very vulnerable to air-launched Kinzhal missiles and Russian subs.

Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

If you don’t want to be noticed then the best bet would be Swedish and German diesel-electric AIP subs because of how quiet they are operating on batteries at very slow speeds, but they can’t carry TLAMs. They can sink ships and landing craft though, so preventing amphibious landings. Plus the Type 212 has IDAS missiles to shoot down ASW helicopters.

I doubt Germany would send any subs though. Don’t know what it’s playing at.

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago
Reply to  JohninMK

Ukraine doesn’t have many S-300 systems and most of the rest of their anti-air assets are old short-ranged systems, although as you say they could potentially be dangerous in certain situations, especially Buk because of its altitude. Ukraine urgently needs modern SAM systems/SHORAD systems and LOADS of missiles. Of the existing SAM systems, I think the French/Italian SAMP/T system might be the most useful, backed up with shorter ranged systems like VL-MICA and Sky Sabre (although the latter is relatively new and I don’t know how many of them we currently have). The German MANTIS NBS system and the Oerlikon… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
Meirion x
Meirion x
2 months ago
Reply to  Humpty Dumpty

Iron Dome would be useful as well. Western subs are not allowed in Black Sea, but can launch from the Aegean Sea.

Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago
Reply to  Meirion x

Yep, agree about Iron Dome. The MANTIS NBS system and the Oerlikon Skyguard 3 system would also be useful to protect air bases. The mobile Oerlikon Skyranger system would also be useful to complement mobile SAM systems, although I’m not sure if it’s currently operational or if it is, in what numbers. Wasn’t aware western subs aren’t allowed into the Black Sea, but if a large-scale war broke out they might enter regardless. Subs could launch TLAMs from the Aegean as you say, although would that require getting permission from the countries that the TLAMs would fly over (Greece, Bulgaria,… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
Humpty Dumpty
2 months ago

F-35s, F-22s, F-15s, F-16s, Typhoons, Rafales, Gripens, Growlers and Compass Call aircraft would all be very useful now.

Last edited 2 months ago by Humpty Dumpty
geoff
geoff
2 months ago

I am coming round to the idea that Putins posturing is just him showing us how big his balls are and that we must think twice before messing with him!!
There is a lovely local version of this behaviour that raises a rye chuckle here in South Africa-picture this-a 250 pound Dutchman( Afrikaaner) grandson of those that fought us in 1899, looking straight at you with his piercing eyes of steel and pointing menacingly at your face with a stubby finger. He says..
MOENIE MET MY ROND VOK NIE!!
I am sure i don’t need to translate😄

Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

I think there is more going on in the background. There has been various meetings involving the US and EU and details of what has been discussed and/or agreed has been kept secret. I wouldn’t be surprised if in a year or so once the dust has settled that Russia gets something out of this, maybe better access on trade or some other compromise.

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Lekker man, lekker!. Morning Geoff, hope you’re well Mate.

geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  Klonkie

All good Klonkie. Hope you are too. Whilst trying to make light of the Ukraine story, it is a worrying situation with much potential to escalate out of control.
I see your PM is getting flak for her Covid policies. Seem very much over the top.
Hot and humid here in Durbs. Cheers for now

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 months ago