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Escorts - a useful term? Why not say 'frigates and destroyers'?

Yokel

LE
Is 'Escorts' really the best collective term for 'Frigates and Destroyers'?

Years ago I was looking at Navy Net and one poster commented that the term 'Escort' downplayed the ability of a modern frigate or destroyer to deploy as a single unit, and perform operational tasks by herself. I think it also downplays the contribution they make to task groups.

Historically the destroyer started out as the Torpedo Boat Destroyer and was born in Victorian times as a counter to torpedo boats that might pose a threat to big gun warships. The title was later shorted simply to 'Destroyer' and the role expanded to include performing torpedo attacks against the enemy herself. Then the U boat became a menance in World War One countering them became part of the destroyer's role. I think the hydrophone was invented just in time for the end of the war and they might have had them, in addition to early depth charges.

In World War Two destroyers and the smaller corvettes spent much of their time escorting both larger warships and merchant convoys. The term frigate, previously used for a fast ship of the line, was brought back into usage for ships built specifically for ASW roles - with radar, ASDIC, HF/DF, and weapons such as Hedgehog or Squid. In those days only Cruisers were really large enough to carry a heavy anti aircraft armament.

Since 1945 both types have grown - and are similar in size to World War Two Cruisers. Advances in technology mean they all have capability against air, surface, and submarine threats, but the destroyer has taken on the anti air warfare role whilst the frigate specialises in ASW. Both can be used for general roles and can deploy independently. However, naval capability is built around task groups. During the Falkland War the two carriers were accompanied by something like twenty frigates and destroyers - many of them old and lacking decent radar and missiles. The escorts dedicated purely to the carriers was low - perhaps one of the Type 22s goalkeeping with Sea Wolf? At times Type 22s were detached for other tasks, and groups of frigates and destroyers were detached for things like submarine hunting (with carrier based Sea Kings), naval gunfire support, inserting/extracting/supporting special forces, providing a close escort for the landing force - and providing control for the carrier based Sea Harriers.

One reason I think 'Escort' is an unhelpful term is because of the question of what is to be escorted? A carrier? A merchant ship? what about when she does a role that is escorting nothing - perhaps NGS? My example would be imagine a situation where a small force is put ashore from an LPD. One frigate maintains close proximity to the LPD to defend her - definitely escorting. But what of the other frigate that stays close to the shore and is on call to provide NGS if the Royal Marines need it?

For the ships in a carrier based group, those that provide close protection for the carrier could be said to be escorting. But what about the destroyer that provides control for carrier based (and other fighters), contributes to control of aircraft on other missions, and keeps tabs on everything in the air. Is she really an escort, which implies a passive and purely defensive role? Likewise the frigate some distance from the carrier, providing long range ASW detection with towed array sonar and working with ASW helicopters - including those from the carrier? Escorting? Yes - but to the whole force including any amphibious force, mine counter measures forces, or crisis response shipping being escorted.

The term 'Escort' does not really highlight the fact that the frigates and destroyers contribute to the effectiveness of the carrier's aircraft. Maybe this should be on the CVF and Carrier Strike thread, but I think it is a separate issue - at least in part.
 
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Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
Saw the thread title and thought it was about women of loose morals!
 
Saw the thread title and thought it was about women of loose morals!

Yep, 'escorts' or 'consorts'; both terms used to describe prostitution.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Refer to them as 'Boats' and have done.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
Except they’re ships, not boats. Bleeding land lubbers.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

What?! You're going to tell me that they don't have kitchens and stairs next.
 
D

Deleted 24582

Guest

Yokel

LE
If only Guns was still here to smite the deserving.....

Is there any chance people could try to post only replies that have some relevance to the issue? It is important given the misinformation spun by ********* like Max Hastings and swallowed by other media types who lack two brain cells to rub together.

F*** it - I am changing the title.
 
Flotilla vessels used to be the general term.
 

Yokel

LE
I think @alfred_the_great or @A2_Matelot might have some involvement with public engagement, as well as both being very capable and intelligent. Also @Not a Boffin might have some ideas on how to counter those who insist that all warships near a carrier are there purely to escort her, and that there is no other role for surface combatants, or that nothing other than a carrier ever needs defending, or in the case of Lewis Page they advocate having carriers but no frigates or destroyers.
 

FORMER_FYRDMAN

LE
Book Reviewer
If only Guns was still here to smite the deserving.....

Is there any chance people could try to post only replies that have some relevance to the issue? It is important given the misinformation spun by ********* like Max Hastings and swallowed by other media types who lack two brain cells to rub together.

F*** it - I am changing the title.

In the spirit of inter-service co-operation and in a naval context, let me try to be helpful for a moment

Consort:

1577714548380.png


Escort:

1577714723263.png

(Allegedly)
 

Fake Sheikh

War Hero
A modern day mutiny on a nuke boat...
Her Sub Lover now in civy street
1577714600484.png

Solid way to ruin a career all for a bit of skirt, was she tight worth it?
 

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