With the arrival of an unknown Virginia class submarine this morning, three American submarines have now visited Faslane since the start of July.

While visits themselves are common, this frequency of visits is not common. Neither is it common for visits to be publicised by the U.S. Navy or Royal Navy unlike the visit of the USS Rhode Island, a Trident-armed nuclear submarine, that arrived (and departed) earlier this month.

A few days ago, the USS Georgia (equipped with an underwater launch system for special forces) joined the USS Rhode Island in visiting Faslane naval base near Glasgow in Scotland, arriving not long after the Rhode Island had left. The USS Georgia, like the USS Rhode Island, is an Ohio-class submarine. Unlike Rhode Island, however, she was converted to a cruise missile submarine from a ballistic missile submarine.

The U.S. Navy said that this port visit to Faslane reflects the United States’ “commitment to our allies and partners in the region and complements the many exercises, training, operations, and other military cooperation activities conducted by Strategic Forces to ensure they are available and ready to safely and effectively operate around the globe at any time”.

The last time a U.S. Navy SSBN conducted a port visit to Faslane was when USS Alaska (SSBN 732) visited in July 2019.

“This port visit strengthens the U.S./U.K. cooperation and Rhode Island’s forward presence demonstrates our capability, flexibility, and continued commitment to NATO allies.”

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
1 month ago

Off topic.

https://www.shephardmedia.com/news/naval-warfare/royal-navy-negotiating-naval-strike-missile-purchase/

Will excite all those obsessed with the RNs escorts having no ASM beyond Martlet and Sea Venom.

I still wish they’d get on and put ASM on the jets as priority.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago

What would you suggest? Are you looking for a stand-off “interim” for Typhoon, or buying in something already integrated on F-35 to completement Spear?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

I wouldn’t suggest any, as I’m not knowledgeable on their capabilities.

Only that, IMO, that capability on a jet, the F35 especially, trumps that on a ship, as the RN should not be putting it’s escorts in harms way trying to target other ships.

Armchair Admiral
Armchair Admiral
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Getting spear3 on either jet would be a first step to start with, and soon. They may not be the biggest but they are smart and a decent number could be fired at once.

As for the subs, the US navy has recognised at long last that the bacon butty is the thing that gives crew the oomph to fight with, and are stocking up.

Or it could be that they are making a point by the number of visits and publicising said visits?
AA

Jon
Jon
1 month ago

Do we know if/when Spear or Spear-EW is actually scheduled for Typhoon? MBDA talked about production Spear on Typhoon from 2023, with guided firings from around now, but I’ve read nothing from the RAF/MOD

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Hi Jon, I don’t think that the MOD(RAF) have actually originally scheduled S3 for the Typhoon. Believe it was always intended for F35b only.
Original date was 2024 to coincide with Blk4 upgrade, but that’s obviously slipped somewhat now.
Can’t say that I’ve seen anything to suggest a Typhoon/S3 pairing anywhere, but you never know!

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

That’s what I feared, that the Typhoon guided firings are still just part of the test build up for the F-35s. It seems a shame. They’ve spent over half a billion odering the missiles, but it seems they’ll just sit there for 5 years, waiting on Lockheed Martin. Wouldn’t it make sense to integrate them properly onto Typhoons, even if just to increase export possibilities?

Last edited 1 month ago by Jon
Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

I believe that due to Blk 4 issues, IOC for S3 has been ‘relaxed’ a year or so, so that what you allude to doesn’t occur!!!!
Unfortunately, believe that the mix will be Typhoon/Brimstone, F35/S3, unless the RAF have a change of heart/stump up some readies to fully integrate S3 onto Typhoon.

Martin
Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

SPEAR EW will be integrated on to Typhoon and the MOD is actively pursuing integration of the standard version but it wants the partners to pay towards it.

https://www.mbda-systems.com/press-releases/17630/

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

The whole point of putting OTH ASM on our frigates is that it forces opposition ships to keep their distance – which gives the frigate additional time to prepare their defence

If the US Navy is concerned at the apparent lack of offensive firepower on our ships, then so should we be. If Radakin has reviewed his decision and this report is true, many of our sailors will be relieved. As well as me..

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Thing is, does it? Does it force them to keep their distance? As by my, possibly errenous, appreciation of their doctrine they’d not be coming to us with their ships anyway. In war how many Russian ships are passing from the Barents into the North Sea, Norwegian Sea, and N Atlantic? They’re hiding in their bastions north of the Kola and in the Kara Sea south of Novaya Zemlya. Moving forward into the teeth of NATO from there exposes them to attack by land based air power, and submarine attacks. And they need to do that to try to fix… Read more »

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
1 month ago

I have to admit that your points do make sense, so maybe we should agree to disagree on this one? I do think the F35B should have ASM missile too

The Admiralty keeps sending our ships out on their own. That’s why I think they should be more lethally armed. And I think the rules of engagement should be revised in favour of allowing the Captain/Officer of the Watch to make decisions to pre-emptively attack approaching threats

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Yes. The USN, USAF shouldn’t have to shoulder nearly the entire load for ASMs and anti surface long range cruise missiles. Other NATO countries need to pull the finger out and start buying them in combat effective quantities. Britain and France have some long range cruise missiles but far to few especially since they both lack a credible SEAD capability for their aircraft.

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
1 month ago

Everything is a priority Daniele, staring in about five years time😎

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Geoff Roach

😎 That is politics. And it isn’t changing soon my friend save a war when they are all made to look stupid and “lessons will be learned” Well I’d start with cross party agreement of a way forward and budget defence wise, as it is a political football prone to the whim at the time. And removal of Successor costs from core budget. That elephant in the room is not moving. You’ll find there is a lot of stuff in the pipeline, especially for the army, far sooner than that. Mostly as yet unannounced. Will take time to build and… Read more »

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago

Notwithstanding GB’s recent well presented case for Harpoon 2, I hope that RN have accepted that getting surface strike on their own platforms is a safer medium term maritime bet than what should admittedly be the entire logic of your proposal, Daniele. As indicated in earlier posts, I distrust the RAF who own F35, not because they have any intrinsic objection to RN access to the aircraft, but because the aircraft are so few in number; the RAF will have their own demands on the platform in any hot scenario; and they are human – so I distrust the RAF!… Read more »

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

F35’s will be deployed depending on the requirement. If it’s from a carrier, they will deploy on the carrier, if it’s land based, then that is what they will do. The RAF are just as invested in carrier strike as the RN. It isn’t a them or us attitude, it’s a joint force under one command.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

Hi Gavin. Next squadron to form is a “marked” FAA one, 809 NAS. Not heard about a squadron 4, assume you meant the 4th to stand up? It is all cosmetic as the JFL is joint, in its pilots, ground crews, and supports. By no means 50-50 sure, I’d think the balance is with the RAF. As to the RN having “their own” F35s, well we’d need a much bigger military and budget for that. I doubt the RN would find the budget to buy their own and maintain the pilots and crews over what the FAA does already. So… Read more »

Nicholas
Nicholas
1 month ago

Thank you for that. I take it that you do not share the heavier ASM part of the RN’s profile?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Nicholas

Share the heavier part of the RNs profile??

Are you asking me do I share the widespread concern of posters of lack of a Harpoon replacement on escorts?

I’d like to see it replaced, yes.

Do I think it is 100% necessary and vital bearing in mind the long explained factors of how the RN fights, the difficulty in obtaining a target, NATO, money, and the potential enemy, when we have Sea Venom, Martlet, and CAAM?

No.

ASM on F35 Typhoon is a different story.

Nicholas
Nicholas
1 month ago

Spectacularly bad English from me, apologies.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Nicholas

Lol that’s ok! Don’t apologise.

Nicholas
Nicholas
1 month ago

On a side side issue the SoS and attendant admirals were asked, at the select committee, what the T26 would do to despatch an enemy sub. The answer was phone a friend or call a P*. The SoS stepped in and mentioned ASROC. I didn’t know what to make of it. On the one hand our specialist T26 cannot destroy subs, on the other the minister hints at VLS and ASROC. ???

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Nicholas

The initial answer was “It uses either the Merlin helicopter that it has on the back of the ship, or it will cue other assets that can do that, like P-8 Poseidon.”

An embarked Merlin can hardly be considered phone-a-friend.

The SoS stepping in, as you say, and talking about calling a sub or using Mk41-lauched ASROC, was just giving other alternatives.

This is more that we have at the moment as the Admiral pretty much admitted that current ship-launched torpedo tubes (which the T26 won’t have) were invariably empty anyway.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Nicholas

The T26s will have Merlin so that would be the primary sub killer.

ASROC, it’s been explained a few times by GB on this forum why ASROC is not an ideal solution compared to the ASW helicopter. I forget the details now.

dan
dan
1 month ago

I saw a video of a Martlet being fired by a Ukrainian and was surprised to see that it had a smokeless motor. This makes it infinitely hardly for the targeted aircraft to spot it and evade or use countermeasures. Not sure why other manpads like the Stinger, ect still use motors that put out a ton of smoke.

George Amery
George Amery
1 month ago

Hi folks hope all is well!
Understandably this level of activity is increased under the circumstances, and co-inside withe normal operational exercises planned in advance. I suspect this is obviously a show of force as normally other activities are secret.
Cheers
George

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  George Amery

Hmmm…almost as though there is some not terribly subtle signaling by two nuclear powers, to a third power, to perhaps curb a naturally acquisitive instinct? 🤔😁

In a not dissimilar vein, predict that Farnborough will be the first non-US locale to host/exhibit a B-21 (probable flyover, at first). Mad Vlad, please take note…😊

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Or a pre-emptive, denial strike on a friendly power, will result in the obliteration of mother Russia.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

In current environment, if serious expeditionary air (e.g,. Sqdn to Wing level, BUFFs) materializes at RAF Fairford, it is time for everyone to carefully review the Lord’s Prayer. At that point it would be relatively safe to assume the Orcs have walked right up to the line, and USAF is prepared to drop the hammer. Those remaining afterward, if any, could begin speculation re WW IV.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Shows we are decently prepared to show our hand in order to remind Vlad that two teams have a say in any warGame. Similarly, we have not carried out any attack on Russia, despite the aforementioned ‘needing’ to attack Ukraine because he fears Russia is threatened. What a Tosser (presume US familiar with that compliment). Rgs

Nathan
Nathan
1 month ago

Did you see NYC has issued advice for surviving a nuclear attack – could these be related?

DanielMorgan
DanielMorgan
1 month ago
Reply to  Nathan

Absolutely not. New York City exists in its own little universe totally divorced from reality and the rest of the country, especially the Pentagon.

Ian M
Ian M
1 month ago
Reply to  DanielMorgan

Yup! I’ve been to Times Square.😱

TypewriterMonkey
TypewriterMonkey
1 month ago

Stocking up on Irn-Bru.

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago

All part of the strengthening of Scotland as an important UK defence contributor. With the current warship-building programme to see improved infrastructure to speed up the build of new ships, further indicates the MOD’s determination to make Scotland the principal centre for years to come. The notion that if independence is won Scotland would lose this industry is simply not true. Pundits believe Scotland would see an increase in manufacturing due to lower energy costs ( a wealth of hydro-generated power) clearly points to a potential revolution in the Highlands. Sadly, the UK will be reduced in international stature with… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Scotland isn’t breaking away, so stop the headless panicking.

Cj
Cj
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Wow, take a tablet and chill Scotland’s no going anywhere

DMJ
DMJ
1 month ago

Try including punctuation and checking your spellings before posting. Otherwise this looks like a poor rant.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  DMJ

It is a poor rant. Apparently we have no offensive or defensive power left.🙄
CASD for decades is on the brink too, that’s news to me as well.

I suspect Den knows next to sod all about the capabilities of HM armed forces, 4 Astutes or not. Yes, numbers matter, and so do other factors, that those only interested in mere numbers don’t consider.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

With that lack of grammar, punctuation, spelling and ignorance of the CASD, you look like a Russia troll 🤷🏻‍♂️

Cj
Cj
1 month ago

Jeez what’s with people on here, deep breath and think of Moscow ya wee nutter!! Oh your English is worse than mine and I’m Scottish.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Cj

Doom. Gloom. Fear. Pessimism. There is a lot about on UKDJ!

Welcome to the site!

Cj
Cj
1 month ago

Thanks Daniele, think some people need a hug and some need a slap by the looks of things.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Cj

Some of the doom mongers are Trolls, others like to moan as it seems to satisfy a need or it maybe it is fashionable to bash the UK for all and sundry. I could list the cuts over the last 30 years with the best of them, but I see the many plusses too so why bother unless it is in context. As for Scotland. Long live the union! I myself am part Scots. I’m also aware more people vote for unionist parties than nationalist, and that the unionist vote is split in 3. No wonder the SNP win many… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago

I was somewhat surprised by SoS comment ref ASROC, it’s not a capability we’ve had since we retired IKARA! The RN use helicopters to localise and attack SMs, and have done for decades, I don’t really see us changing that position when T26 comes into service. If anything, I think the use of drones to assist Merlin’s will be the way ahead for UK ASW forces in the future. Appreciate that lots of systems can go into Mzk 41 tubes, with ASROC being one of them, but it’s a old system with a inferior torpedo on the end, can’t see… Read more »

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

I’m not sure how useful is a system is if it’s significantly outranged by an enemy submarine’s torpedos. Maybe a new longer-range version is in the pipeline.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Its not just the range of the system (Japanese one is good for some 30km), but the torpedo on the end of it. The US version is inferior to our Stingray by all accounts, which is itself due to be replaced in the not to distant future! The system is good for getting a torpedo downrange over distance quickly, but needs a position to aim at, which it can get from another asset I believe. So reaction time is far quicker than trying to get a helo in the air. Its also got more range than our tube launched version… Read more »

Tams
Tams
1 month ago

Assassinating their shit-for-brains leader.