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Subject: Royal Navy
eldnah    10/8/2010 10:15:24 AM
An article today in the Daily Telegraph claims in order to finance the two CVFs the rest of the Royal Navy will be reduced to six Type 45 & six type 23 frigates, seven Astute SSNs and four aging Vanguard SSBNs that may or may not be replaced. Given that an American Carrier Strike group usually consists of a mix of five or six CGs/DDGs and one or two SSNs it appears if the CVFs are properly escorted there will be insufficient ships for almost any other tasks. It appears to be an absurd naval strategy.
 
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JFKY    And your point is?   10/8/2010 11:29:50 AM
Britain's broke and a bunch of cheese-paring politicians, some of whom see no value in overseas "intervention" are in power...what did anyone expect?
 
Finally, this may be just Service Politics.  The RN claims it's being pared to the bone, in order to raise an outcry against projected cuts....from what I've seen all the reports of the demise of Her Majesty's Armed Forces, such as paying for Trident replacement out of current budgets or this, have been just THAT..REPORTS.  The Exchequer hasn't actually proposed ANYTHING. 
 
Also, this may be Her Majesty's Government playing politics...IF the public believes that the Armed Forces are being cut to 60% of their former size, BUT then the actual budgetary allotment only cuts them to 80%, well then that doesn't seem so bad, does it?  Or by proposing massive, and unplanned cuts, the government might be "talked" into accepting a force level that it wanted all along....
 
Bottom-Line: this is MoD/RN/HM Government playing the budget game, as much as it is a real set of proposals.
 
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Reactive       10/8/2010 12:40:33 PM

Britain's broke and a bunch of cheese-paring politicians, some of whom see no value in overseas "intervention" are in power...what did anyone expect?

 

Finally, this may be just Service Politics.  The RN claims it's being pared to the bone, in order to raise an outcry against projected cuts....from what I've seen all the reports of the demise of Her Majesty's Armed Forces, such as paying for Trident replacement out of current budgets or this, have been just THAT..REPORTS.  The Exchequer hasn't actually proposed ANYTHING. 

Actually the Chancellor, George Osborne has made it abundantly clear he expects the cost of trident replacement to be shouldered by the MOD, he's even issued a statement to that effect. The leaked memo to DC from def sec Liam Fox indicated that there are still significant disagreements to be resolved, it does appear that DC and GO do believe that Britains role should be scaled down to a COIN/Peacekeeping role, one thing that GO very recently admitted was that contractual obligations mean that many of the cuts proposed are unfeasible given the penalty clauses contained in the contracts. This means that at least JSF and CVF programs are probably safe from the axe.
 
 
Also, this may be Her Majesty's Government playing politics...IF the public believes that the Armed Forces are being cut to 60% of their former size, BUT then the actual budgetary allotment only cuts them to 80%, well then that doesn't seem so bad, does it?  Or by proposing massive, and unplanned cuts, the government might be "talked" into accepting a force level that it wanted all along....

That's true, there could also be a backbench revolt, DC is in a vulnerable position, not least because he's regarded by many of his own party of being unable to convincingly win an election against the most unpopular prime minister in living memory. And a 20% cut + the cost of trident replacement is in real terms closer to a 30-40% cut, the new SSBN/SLBM replacement program is likely to far exceed current estimates. 
 
We'll have to wait and see for the SDR, not long at all now until we know, it's being rushed through so expect a lot of poor decisions along the way. The truth is the country can afford to have a well equiped Armed forces, it seems to me that every department needs to be seen to have an equal share of spending cuts, the only thing we won't reduce is foreign aid, my view is that defense should be top priority but public sentiment is often the polar opposite of this view, people have short memories.

 

Bottom-Line: this is MoD/RN/HM Government playing the budget game, as much as it is a real set of proposals.
 
We'll see, I hope you're right.


 
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Reactive    This just in.. Take with a pinch of Salt   10/8/2010 1:03:13 PM
 thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23886028-david-cameron-rules-out-slash-and-burn-defence-cuts.do
 
David Cameron ?rules out slash and burn defence cuts?
Robert Fox and Martin Bentham
08.10.10
 

David Cameron has intervened to prevent ?slash and burn? cuts to the Armed Forces after holding a private meeting with defence chiefs.

The Prime Minister is understood to have decided that there will be no reduction in the operational strength of the Army while the fighting in Afghanistan continues.

He has also agreed that both of the Royal Navy's aircraft carriers will be built and that, instead of implementing widespread and large-scale cuts immediately, a ?rolling review? of defence spending will take place over the next two years. Key decisions on the future strength of the Army will also be put off until 2015 — which Mr Cameron has set as the deadline for a British withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The Prime Minister's intervention over cuts to the Ministry of Defence's £37 billion-a-year budget came during a private summit with defence chiefs held after a meeting of the National Security Council yesterday. He is understood to have emphasised his determination to minimise the impact of cuts on the Armed Forces.

?It is not going to be slash and burn,? one source said. Details of the Government's plans will be announced in a strategic defence and security review — due to be published the week after next, the day before the outcome of the public spending review is revealed.

The decision to go ahead with both new aircraft carriers is understood to have been taken partly because contractual commitments mean that it would be equally expensive to cancel one.

Plans to use vertical take-off aircraft on the carriers have been abandoned, however, and cheaper jets that take off and land by using a catapult and wire will be used instead. The second carrier might also be converted from its conventional use to operate as a ?floating platform? for commandos.

The Navy is also expected to be allowed to buy new frigates for 2020, and the Royal Marines will be retained instead of being merged with the Army's Paratroop Regiment, as some reports had suggested. However, the helicopter budget is expected to be reduced by as much as £1 billion. Ministers are expected to insist that this will not affect operations in Afghanistan.

All the planned changes are subject to confirmation at a final meeting of the National Security Council prior to publication of the defence review.

PM has realised the world is a more dangerous place

At last, the Prime Minister has taken charge of the radical overhaul of defence and foreign policy, though not in the direction previously advertised.

Chairing a session of the new National Security Council yesterday he and senior ministers put the final lick of paint to the Strategic Defence and Security Review due to be unveiled on October 19 — a day before the voice of doom of the Treasury, George Osborne, announces the Comprehensive Spending Review.

The timing is the clue. ?The review document will be very thin, a statement of intent more than definitive plan for cuts,? a Westminster insider said last night.

The plan now is to have a rolling review looking at all aspects of defence management, the armed forces, and equipment procurement, over the next two years or so. There will have to be some cuts, though nothing on the scale previously suggested. One of the target areas is the helicopter budget. The number of machines will be reduced. The Trident replacement will be delayed by a year or two, but will go ahead in one form or another — as will the aircraft carrier programme, though with a different variant of the Lockheed Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter.
 
 
^^ Good news if true -  Better range and cheaper.

These are mere details compared with the overall change of strategy the Prime Minister appeared to agree at the meeting yesterday. What has changed? First the Americans became alarmed that after appearing in Douglas Hurd's words ?to punch above its weight,? Britain under the Hurd protégé David Cameron was preparing to punch well below i

 
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