by PETER VINE United Kingdom Despite the cuts, the drumbeat of operations rolls on. In addition to the previously announced dispatching of Type 45 Destroyer HMS Daring to the Persian Gulf to join the international flotilla already there, the Foreign Office released a rather hurried notification to the press that Daring’s sister ship, HMS Dauntless, [...]
Archived posts from category ‘Royal Navy’
With rebel forces in Tripoli and Moammar Gadhafi on the run, the end could be near for the Libyan civil war. Sporadic fighting continues in the capital city of the oil-rich North African nation, NATO warplanes are still patrolling overhead, and there’s always the danger of Gadhafi true-believers launching a fresh insurgency. But already, Western analysts are weighing the lessons of the six-month-long conflict. “Modern air power is the key force that is directly leading to the overthrow of the Gadhafi regime,” retired Air Force Lt. Gen. David Deptula concluded. True, but a host of other cutting-edge technologies, and a few decidedly low-end ones, also played critical roles.
Think Defense on Atlantic Conveyor
She was the big ship that could — until she couldn’t. In early 1982, Atlantic Conveyer was nothing special: a mere civilian container ship belonging to the Cunard Line company. Then, on April 2, Argentine troops invaded the South Atlantic’s Falkland Islands, long a British territory. The U.K. Royal Navy quickly assembled a task force around two medium aircraft carriers with Harrier jump-jet fighters. The task force include 40 commercial vessels pressed into wartime service, including the 15,000-ton Atlantic Conveyer.
The U.K.’s October Strategic Defense and Security Review deeply cut the Royal Navy, removing two of three current, small carriers, several amphibious ships and four of 23 escorts. In the wake of the review, we asked readers to imagine their own future Royal Navy, within existing financial restraints. We had done the same for the U.S. Navy some years ago.
The Royal Navy seemed to escape major cuts in the most recent British defense drawdown. The Senior Service lost just two of its roughly 100 ships: a mine-hunter and a survey vessel. The Royal Air Force, on the other hand, took big hits, losing its Nimrod maritime patrol planes plus some Tornado and Harrier jets.
Future British Frigate Takes Shape
BAE Systems has released the first artist’s impressions of the planned Future Surface Combatant for the Royal Navy. The British government has awarded the U.K. defense contractor a 3.4-million pound contract for initial design work on the vessel, which is intended to replace the existing Type 22 and Type 23 frigates beginning in around a decade.