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Old Jan 12, 2012, 09:11 AM   #51
arkitect
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There is of course another scenario.
Oil is found in large amounts, after a few years the Falklanders demand independence from the UK. I think the huge income divided by 3000 odd people would look very inviting choice.
.
And the United States will quickly find evidence in its dusty archives that the Mayflower made a pitstop at the Falklands before continuing on its way to Massachusets.

Oh there will be blood…
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Old Jan 12, 2012, 09:14 AM   #52
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And the United States will quickly find evidence in its dusty archives that the Mayflower made a pitstop at the Falklands before continuing on its way to Massachusets.

Oh there will be blood…
Haliburton to the rescue.
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Old Jan 12, 2012, 11:03 AM   #53
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Amphibious landings have to start from somewhere, and perhaps the Brits have a nuclear sub or two on the ocean floor, just outside of Argentinian navel bases.

Troop movements by sea are hard pressed to pull a "supplies" in this day and age.
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Old Jan 12, 2012, 11:06 AM   #54
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Now I wouldn't dare suggest that the Telegraph knows the locations of our subs, but this does suggest we don't have any hunter killer subs in the vicinity of the Falklands.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...-decision.html

I'd be surprised if we don't though!
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 06:45 PM   #55
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Have they got another big U.S. hand-me-down ship that the Royal Navy can use for target practice??

Bring it on.
With the latest austerity package, the UK is pretty much out of the force projection business. There won't be another Task Force.

Not that I believe Argentina is going to invade again either.
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 06:52 PM   #56
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With the latest austerity package, the UK is pretty much out of the force projection business. There won't be another Task Force.
I don't believe Israel has a Task Force either, but they share the same asset as you do, nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them, on target.
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 07:08 PM   #57
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With the latest austerity package, the UK is pretty much out of the force projection business. There won't be another Task Force.
The last Labour government signed a contract for aircraft carriers, which contained a stupid cancellation clause, the effect of which was that cancellation was effectively as expensive as going ahead with the carriers.

So we have two Queen Elizabeth class carriers set for deployment in 2016 and 2018 (although not fully operational until a few years later).

So yes, with the sale of the Harriers and the downgrading of the remaining Illustrious carrier in to a Helicopter platform, there's no fixed wing force projection probably till the end of this decade. It will return however...
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 07:18 PM   #58
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The last Labour government signed a contract for aircraft carriers, which contained a stupid cancellation clause, the effect of which was that cancellation was effectively as expensive as going ahead with the carriers.
Clever dicks.

A poison-pill, to cause future non-Labour governments to take pause, before cancelling the orders, and all those Union labour jobs.

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Old Jan 14, 2012, 07:23 PM   #59
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Cleaver dicks .
Psst... is that like a smart chopper?

KGB
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 07:27 PM   #60
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Cleaver dicks.

A poison-pill, to cause future non-Labour governments to take pause, before cancelling the orders, and all those Union labour jobs.
Not only that... Scottish union layout jobs. But that's another thread...
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Old Jan 14, 2012, 07:51 PM   #61
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Psst... is that like a smart chopper?

KGB
This thread brings out the mohel in me.

Speaking of, Sherman's Lagoon was humorous yesterday.
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Old Jan 15, 2012, 07:09 AM   #62
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Not only that... Scottish union layout jobs. But that's another thread...
I think you need to look at where the carriers are being made, i.e. all round the UK. They're only being assembled at Rosyth.
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Old Jan 15, 2012, 10:32 AM   #63
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The last Labour government signed a contract for aircraft carriers, which contained a stupid cancellation clause, the effect of which was that cancellation was effectively as expensive as going ahead with the carriers.

So we have two Queen Elizabeth class carriers set for deployment in 2016 and 2018 (although not fully operational until a few years later).

So yes, with the sale of the Harriers and the downgrading of the remaining Illustrious carrier in to a Helicopter platform, there's no fixed wing force projection probably till the end of this decade. It will return however...
Well, the good news is that Argentina is probably in worse shape, so this an academic discussion. However, the ability to retake the Falklands won't be there. Remember last time, at the peak of their power, the UK lost seven ships, several dozen aircraft, and over 400 troops (not to mention double the number wounded, which people always overlook).

The Navy goes down to about 20 ships.The two carriers, as you mention, but only one will really see service. No fixed wing capability for about a decade. World-class destroyers, But there are like six of them - only so much you can do with that. Subs can shut down maritime areas, but again, only a handful of them. And let's not talk nukes - can't use them on non-nuke states, and really not without US approval, so they are just a prestige weapon. HMS Ocean is a nice capability as does the Albion, but are you going to put your Navy and transports into risk with just the destroyers for air defense? Can you bring enough ground troops to do the job?

Amateurs talk about tactics, and that's dicey, at best. Experts talk logistics and (as a non-expert), that is going to be a huge challenge to take a force half-way around the world. It was considered touch-and-go in 1983 with a lot more capability. I don't see it in 2017.
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Last edited by paduck; Jan 15, 2012 at 10:36 AM. Reason: Added Albion
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Old Jan 15, 2012, 12:48 PM   #64
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Remember last time, at the peak of their power, the UK lost seven ships, several dozen aircraft, and over 400 troops (not to mention double the number wounded, which people always overlook).
Not sure where you got your numbers, I thought we lost 255 and 3 islanders ?
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Old Jan 15, 2012, 01:21 PM   #65
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Not sure where you got your numbers, I thought we lost 255 and 3 islanders ?
My mistake, got a 4 and 2 confused and mixed in with ~700 wounded. Good catch.
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Old Jan 16, 2012, 03:42 AM   #66
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Nice little story on the BBC website this morning:

Falklands Vets meet
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Old Jan 16, 2012, 04:03 AM   #67
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Nice little story on the BBC website this morning:

Falklands Vets meet
Great story.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 08:36 AM   #68
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However, the ability to retake the Falklands won't be there.
Argentina is highly unlikely to attempt to take the islands again, it must be remembered that they only invaded the islands in 1982 in a (mistaken) belief that the UK wouldn't defend them.

Current carrier capability, or lack of is almost a moot, because we have an airbase on the Falklands that we lacked in 1982, that is currently equipped with 4 Typhoons, and would likely be significantly reinforced should the situation really deteriorate, certainly what is now a proper airbase, and one that is equipped with the latest generation of aircraft is more than comparable to the situation we had in 1982, and arguably preferable to an antiquated carrier, carrying antiquated aircraft.

I know, given the reportage of military cuts by an often frighteningly left wing BBC, that it could be easily forgiven to think that we send our soldiers into battle with nothing other than their dicks in their hands, and paper airplanes in the sky, but to put things into a degree of context, the fact of the matter is that the UK's military is the 4th best funded in the world, with a navy that is still highly capable of projecting its power overseas, despite a current lack of aircraft carrier capability.

You acknowledge that the Royal Navy possess world-class destroyers, but downplay that we only have a handful of them. They are so extremely advanced and capable, that it is arguable that (technically) just one would be required to adequately defend the Falklands against an underfunded & underequipped Argentinian navy and airforce, in fact I'd suggest that (technically speaking) you could park one up in Port Stanley and adequately defend the Falkland Islands, merely shooting anything out of the sky (or to the bottom of the sea) that significantly impinged on the exclusion zone that would exist around the islands, of course I wouldn't advocate such an approach, I'd have two of them sailing around the islands, not forgetting that we'd already have air superiority over the Islands from the very start this time of course and likely a sub or two scoping the waters.

All of this is (or it should be) academic however, because what is really important here (but something that the Argentinian Government continuously seems incapable of acknowledging or respecting), is the self-determination of the Falkland Islanders themselves, and as such, the reality is, is that it's not up to the Argentinians, nor us, to decide their sovereignty, it should be for the people of the Falklands themselves, and as such and as much as it pains me to say it, Cameron was absolutely correct on this very matter in the House of Commons yesterday.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 09:38 AM   #69
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I know, given the reportage of military cuts by an often frighteningly left wing BBC, that it could be easily forgiven to think that we send our soldiers into battle with nothing other than their dicks in their hands, and paper airplanes in the sky, but to put things into a degree of context, the fact of the matter is that the UK's military is the 4th best funded in the world, with a navy that is still highly capable of projecting its power overseas, despite a current lack of aircraft carrier capability.
Yes, the UK military is certainly top 10 in the world in terms of training and equipment, it's just quite small in terms of numbers. Which is fine by me, we are fortunate to live in a time where an assault on the UK mainland by anyone is unthinkable.

On that note, I think the all this talk of defence of the Falklands is a bit drastic because an invasion is very, very unlikely. Argentina is very different politically compared to 30 years ago, democratic countries simply don't tend to declare war on each other. I think it's only happened twice?



More generally, the current assumption in UK military planning is that the UK will always be in a coalition with someone. I think that's good- if we can't persuade another country that any war we chose to fight is justified maybe we should rethink? We are already negotiating sharing deals with the French Navy, and the US was very keen on us building the new larger carriers so they could step into a US carrier fleet if necessary. Plus we are seeing joint fighter like the Eurofighter Typhoon and F35 being made. I think the increasing use of coalitions is great, I'd much rather see a UK carrier with French fighters being protected by US ships (or whatever) than unilateral action.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 10:11 AM   #70
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Argentina is very different politically compared to 30 years ago, democratic countries simply don't tend to declare war on each other. I think it's only happened twice?
Admittedly Argentina wasn't a democratic country then, but neither country actually declared war in 1982, yet that didn't prevent significant armed conflict.

The problem is how do you solve such a problem diplomatically, when one side so steadfastly refuses to acknowledge the status and rights of the population of a disputed territory? That being the situation, either the current political stalemate will continue, or military conflict will be inevitable.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 10:45 AM   #71
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The problem is how do you solve such a problem diplomatically, when one side so steadfastly refuses to acknowledge the status and rights of the population of a disputed territory? That being the situation, either the current political stalemate will continue, or military conflict will be inevitable.
If Argentina invade soon it will be a diplomatic nightmare for them as they haven't given peaceful means enough effort (despite the UK's resolve). They may get some notional support from their neighbours, but the UK/EU is an important trading partner to South America so they can't do too much.

If they wait a few years for tensions to increase they would certainly need to increase their armed forces, especially fighters. The UK’s two planned carriers would almost be able to carry enough fighters to match the entire current Argentine airforce. That would make a UK response much more viable. Plus, as you alluded to earlier, the Royal Navy was geared towards anti-submarine warfare in the early 80s, now its anti-aircraft capabilities are much better. The big increases in military spending Argentina would need would probably not go down well with its people.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 01:21 PM   #72
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If Argentina invade soon it will be a diplomatic nightmare for them...
If Argentina were to invade anytime soon, then the question the UK faces is whether to merely defend the islands as before and potentially face being in a situation whereby we accept that it is likely we will find ourselves in a similar situation again in the future, an almost quarterly-century cycle of conflict if you will.

Or we militarily respond in such a manner that forces Argentina to accept the self-determination of the Falkland people and that will guarantee and prevent further escalations, conflicts and prevent the further loss of life to future generations.

Personally, I suspect the political stalemate that currently exists between the UK and Argentina will simply continue, and then die down as the Argentinian political cycle refreshes, but frankly it's impossible to see any change or solution to the situation in the future, unless Argentina is willing to acknowledge & accept the status of the islanders themselves.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 01:41 PM   #73
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Another possibility is oil is found and the Falkland islanders declare independence from both the UK and Argentina. Problem solved nobody has any thing to fight over.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 01:42 PM   #74
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Personally, I suspect the political stalemate that currently exists between the UK and Argentina will simply continue, and then die down as the Argentinian political cycle refreshes, but frankly it's impossible to see any change or solution to the situation in the future, unless Argentina is willing to acknowledge & accept the status of the islanders themselves.
That is a likely scenario. I agree with you that military conflict appears unlikely in the current context. The UK's armed forces remain more than adequate for the defense of the Falklands, but, more importantly, I don't think Argentina is seriously contemplating a military solution.

If the Falkands were populated with ethnic Argentinians, it would be another matter. But as it stands, I think the process will be a (very) slow acceptance on the part of Argentina that the UK's claim on the Falklands is a lasting one.
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Old Jan 19, 2012, 03:08 PM   #75
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the problem is that both claims have some degree of legitimacy.
they should just split them: one island each, and everyone is happy.
there, done.
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