F35 - Money well spent.

Indeed.
Afghanistan was justified.
The insanity in Iraq was not & the blame for the latter is wholly upon the US.
Sadly, it isn’t. I’d throw a fair bit of blame at us via one morally bankrupt ex-PM who was intent on his place in history. We provided a fig leaf. Be clear: we were complicit even if we were hoodwinked into it.
 
Two aircraft carriers & the embarked F35 air wings will give us that. Not forgetting of course that the whole F35 project would likely have foundered without the backing & expertise supplied by the Tier One "partners".

That was in reference to the Hermans.

But yes you will have an aircraft carrier with some planes, hopefully with the escorts that can be made available to go to some part of the world. Which means if you guess wrong, your forces are completely out of play.
 
Only if you're happy that those watching your (Atlantic) back aren't pissed off at your past behaviour.
Or do you really think a conflict with China wont involve Russia, NK & Myanmar on their side for starters?
I don't know how much the Chinese would count on Russian support. I think the Ivans would be just as happy to stab them in the back at the appropriate time.

But we have a coalition in Asia already, who have some very vested interests in keeping the Chinese at bay.
 
Why the f should we in the first place?? I am sorry, yes, I am a Brit now (apart from 'Merican and elsewhere) but still fail to see why we should? It's fundamentally European struggles - deal with it.
The US intercedes anywhere in its own interests. Want to stop doing it? Stand aside and leave it all to China
 
(...) However, once again, just because something is not 5th Gen doesn’t make it obsolete. (...)
5th generation? Isn't that obsolete now that 6th generation is on the drawing board? You wouldn't want to be caught wearing 5th generation jets when the new fashion of 6th generation hits the shops, now would you? Perhaps its best to wait for the new 6th generation stuff to come out instead of wasting money on soon to be obsolete 5th gen.

More seriously, this is a common marketing tactic. The same vocabulary of arbitrary numeric "generations" or versions and labelling all competitors as "legacy" products has been used in the civilian technology sector for many years. Put all of your competitors in one basket and give that basket a label. Then put your product in a separate basket and give that basket a label. If that label has a number or letter, then give your product the higher number or letter. Now take the oldest and least capable product from the basket containing your competitors and state that this is representative of that basket. Now compare your product to that product and say that this proves that your product is superior in every way to all the products on the competitor basket. By framing how the discussion is carried out you can control how any conclusions are arrived at.

In the case of aircraft the "5th generation" and "legacy" labels arose from US requirements which were focused on replacing their older F-15s, F-18s, F-16s, Harriers, and F117s. The Americans have a lot of clapped out kit that needs replacing and they want to consolidate their fleet down to fewer types in order to try to save money on operations. That a new F-35 is better in most applications than an old F-16 is not hard to believe.

The Typhoon however is a newer plane than any of those, and so doesn't really fit into that same US typology labelling system. The Rafale is similar in that respect. To evaluate them sensibly you have to compare them by actual features rather than just saying "I don't call Typhoon 5th gen, therefore by the indisputable force of logic it's no better than an early model F-16". However, the sort of information which would allow a serious comparison to take place isn't available in public, so it all comes down to willy-waving.

It's worth noting by the way that the argument for the Germans consolidating their types down to just the Typhoon is the same reason as the Americans wanting to consolidate so much of their fleet down to the F-35 - to save money on spare parts inventory and training.
 
Well nobody wants to "nation build" anymore. Our focus is going to be in the Pacific the luster of Europe is about gone these days.
Remember Iraq? Remember when the French said "this is a shit idea, leave us out"? If you had listened to the French then you might have saved yourselves a whole lot of time, effort, and money. But no, you had to say "How hard can it be? After all the French fought the Arabs for centuries so this ought to be easy!" And off you went. The only country that benefited from that war was Iran. The Ayatollahs thank you for getting rid of the one thing that kept them bottled up in their mountains east of the Gulf.

Remember Afghanistan? Remember how the only time in NATO history article 5 was ever invoked was when the US said "Help! Help! We've been attacked by Afghanistan! Come and save us!" And who came to save you? That's right, the French. Face it, if it wasn't for the French, you would be speaking Afghanistanian today.

So Americans are pissed off over the long running and pointless Iraq wars and over the failure of "nation building" in Afghanistan. Whose idea were those? It wasn't the rest of NATO who came up with those ones. Americans talk about how "useless" NATO is, despite that the one and only time that NATO was called out to actual war to defend a member was when the US asked for help.

Now your latest brilliant idea is to take on China head on in East Asia and dictate to them what they can and cannot do throughout the world. And you're trying to convince your allies that China's industry is a "threat to US national security" without any credible evidence for this while simultaneously declaring that the industry of those allies is also a "threat to US national security" and imposing massive tariffs on their goods. But you can't understand why people are having a hard time believing you in this.

Have you ever thought that maybe the problem is you? That is "you" in the sense of the US of course, not you personally. It's like the alcoholic whose solution to people bothering him about his drinking is to drink himself insensible so he can't hear them.

I would rather my son learn Mandarin in school then French...
From what I've seen of the US lately, he might be better off learning Spanish. After all, if he wants to stay in the US he may as well learn the language people speak there.
 
The US will get economies of scale and the benefits of a serious 5th gen aircraft with BVR capability. Keeping some previous specialized aircraft for specific roles makes sense.

UK will do much the same with F-35 and Typhoon, because our operational requirements are less clear. Europe and the Soviet influences, along with ME, Atlantic and global, post colonial interests and responsibilities.

Mr Williamson May have some grand ideas about power projection, but for once, chancellor Hammond is right. Our future flat top deployments are some way off yet, courtesy calls not withstanding.

The RN does have a serious cocktail party and marquee reputation to consider. What else is the Band of the RM for? :)
 
Remember Iraq? Remember when the French said "this is a shit idea, leave us out"? If you had listened to the French then you might have saved yourselves a whole lot of time, effort, and money. But no, you had to say "How hard can it be? After all the French fought the Arabs for centuries so this ought to be easy!" And off you went. The only country that benefited from that war was Iran. The Ayatollahs thank you for getting rid of the one thing that kept them bottled up in their mountains east of the Gulf.

Remember Afghanistan? Remember how the only time in NATO history article 5 was ever invoked was when the US said "Help! Help! We've been attacked by Afghanistan! Come and save us!" And who came to save you? That's right, the French. Face it, if it wasn't for the French, you would be speaking Afghanistanian today.

So Americans are pissed off over the long running and pointless Iraq wars and over the failure of "nation building" in Afghanistan. Whose idea were those? It wasn't the rest of NATO who came up with those ones. Americans talk about how "useless" NATO is, despite that the one and only time that NATO was called out to actual war to defend a member was when the US asked for help.

Now your latest brilliant idea is to take on China head on in East Asia and dictate to them what they can and cannot do throughout the world. And you're trying to convince your allies that China's industry is a "threat to US national security" without any credible evidence for this while simultaneously declaring that the industry of those allies is also a "threat to US national security" and imposing massive tariffs on their goods. But you can't understand why people are having a hard time believing you in this.

Have you ever thought that maybe the problem is you? That is "you" in the sense of the US of course, not you personally. It's like the alcoholic whose solution to people bothering him about his drinking is to drink himself insensible so he can't hear them.


From what I've seen of the US lately, he might be better off learning Spanish. After all, if he wants to stay in the US he may as well learn the language people speak there.
Afghanistan - I can sort of understand - but Iraq was a complete S-H-I-T show based on false pretenses without no clear exit plan. What a waste of time, effort and more importantly, lives. All because of some BS.
 
But we have a coalition in Asia already, who have some very vested interests in keeping the Chinese at bay.
Would you please send this message in large print and braille to our defence secretary who seems to think it's critical we come and play in the Pacific. While Russia might cheerfully stab China in the back, she might also exploit Pacific unrest if it gave her a free move in Europe.
 
Afghanistan - I can sort of understand - but Iraq was a complete S-H-I-T show based on false pretenses without no clear exit plan. What a waste of time, effort and more importantly, lives. All because of some BS.
Afghanistan was f*cked the moment we put non SF ground troops in. The local politics is so complex we were always going to be offending someone who would then take us on. Iraq was an illegal war, Afghanistan was just strategically stupid execution.

I'm going to amend the above; the Afghan situation is really quite simple, but we still didn't get it. In Afghanistan you only really trust yourself and god, but for tactical reasons you must side with first, family in your village, then the rest of the village and you also have duties towards those of your family who do not live in the village [mostly concerning revenge]. Everyone else is "The enemy".
 
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And Brits helped in terms of lending credibility to the whole campaign - when I say Brits, I mean that **** Blair.
You'll not find many on here who argued against it at the time, as I've said previously, the penny only dropped for me I realised that the stabilisation plan had been written by the chuckle brothers.
 
You'll not find many on here who argued against it at the time, as I've said previously, the penny only dropped for me I realised that the stabilisation plan had been written by the chuckle brothers.
Really?

The majority of people I knew in the military thought that the invasion of Iraq was going to be the largest UK strategic error since Suez. I remember deploying on what became TELIC with a profound sense of frustration at Blair.

We should’ve done what we did in Vietnam and politely refuse the US invitation to attend the party.

Regards,
MM
 
Really?

The majority of people I knew in the military thought that the invasion of Iraq was going to be the largest UK strategic error since Suez. I remember deploying on what became TELIC with a profound sense of frustration at Blair.

We should’ve done what we did in Vietnam and politely refuse the US invitation to attend the party.

Regards,
MM
We should have chinned them off. We didn't and there were no resignations over it.

Though concerned with the zeal displayed by Blair I genuinely thought we had a replacement lined up and would keep the army intact.

I'm referring to the malleting @Stonker got on here specifically though, not the wider military. It was embarrassing to see.
 
Really?

The majority of people I knew in the military thought that the invasion of Iraq was going to be the largest UK strategic error since Suez. I remember deploying on what became TELIC with a profound sense of frustration at Blair.

We should’ve done what we did in Vietnam and politely refuse the US invitation to attend the party.

Regards,
MM
I entirely agree but had the feeling (at squadron level) at the time that there was a definite difference of opinion between light blue and green.

No idea how dark blue felt.
 
[QUOTE="Graculus, post: 9113755, member: 81544"]You'll not find many on here who argued against it at the time, as I've said previously, the penny only dropped for me I realised that the stabilisation plan had been written by the chuckle brothers.[/QUOTE]

That is interesting. Hindsight always helps but even at the time (when I was much much younger), I distinctly remember thinking, how bad an idea it was. There was so much BS about the whole thing with very flimsy "evidence," and just trying to sell it to people and allies.
 
Really?

The majority of people I knew in the military thought that the invasion of Iraq was going to be the largest UK strategic error since Suez. I remember deploying on what became TELIC with a profound sense of frustration at Blair.

We should’ve done what we did in Vietnam and politely refuse the US invitation to attend the party.

Regards,
MM
Blair wanted his moment in history. Nothing else mattered.
 
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