Offshore Patrol Vessels

I stand corrected

After 15 years they have finally decided to integrate it

Cynical me wonders if this is to avoid the whole Nuke Mirage retires = retire ASMP sans replacement

May be Brexit related? - France will now be the sole EU nuclear power so may feel the need to beef up its nuclear credentials.
Also Makes you wonder if this is for the Indians?
 
HMS Montrose seeing of off the IRGC intent on seizing British Heritage should demonstrate the folly of forward deploying virtually unarmed OPVs to that region.
I rather suspect the IRGC might not have been so dissuaded if it was HMS Mersey facing them down.
 
Americans keep plenty of small constabulary craft in the region, and for some reason, have felt the need to substantially up arm them

Cyclone-class patrol ship - Wikipedia
How? It has 2 25mm Bushmasters? the rest is bolt on stuff and could be added to a ship? we could do the same with Javelin and starstreak bolted to the side of it...
 

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
How? It has 2 25mm Bushmasters? the rest is bolt on stuff and could be added to a ship? we could do the same with Javelin and starstreak bolted to the side of it...
Yes, but they're American 25mm, so they're all "look upon my cannon and despair!" while British 30mm are smaller and weaker and nobody cares about being shot with 30mm HEI because... y'know... reasons.
 

jrwlynch

LE
Book Reviewer
I get your point now. But the question is, how sure are you of Pakistani nuclear doctrine to categorically state that all their stockpiles are strategic?
Reasonably sure, yes. (Remember we're specifically talking about deployed squadrons)

If nothing else, deployed nuclear weapons get noticed: all that extra security and control measures. As US sailors back in the 1980s described, the "cannot confirm or deny" about whether a given ship was carrying nuclear weapons was needed because everyone aboard knew if they had embarked and were carrying "special weapons".

More generally, "tactical" nuclear weapons were contentious even back in the day, with acres of argument in professional forums about whether commanders really would get authority to pick targets, or whether nuclear weapons would remain under blanket central control.

Public sources say that they are mixed and common sense indicates that weapon yield and launch platform are HUGE indicators of whether its strategic or tactical.
This is why "common sense" is often misleading.

Is an air-dropped 20kt weapon strategic, or tactical? If the answer is "it could be either" then you need to understand what factors cause it to be one or the other.

For the only times nuclear weapons have actually been used, neither Tibbets nor Sweeney were handed their payloads and told "see if you find something worth dropping them on" - the decision to use nuclear weapons, and the selection of targets, was made at the highest levels. Therefore, the weapons were strategic.

We had "tactical nuclear weapons" - if you class by yield and delivery - in 1982; but Sandy Woodward didn't have the authority to have Sea Harriers loft a few friendly kilotons over Rio Gallegos airbase to suppress enemy air activity without asking London first. Likewise in 1991, Peter de la Billière didn't have nuclear options on the table, even though we had air-dropped variable-yield weapons in the inventory.

The reality of how nuclear weapons are seen as crossing a major threshold means that the only time "tactical nuclear weapons" make any sort of sense, is when serious megatonnage is already flying around and a few more small mushroom clouds will be lost in the noise.

Surely A 10 megaton warhead on an ICBM which will be detected once launched and likely trigger a counter strike can only be strategic. Especially when it’s blast will kill both the enemy and your troops.
And at that extreme, there's limited scope for debate - hence why land-based ICBMs are routinely lumped in as "strategic weapon systems".

Below that, "tactical nuclear weapons" become a theoretical construct, that some claim might be useful once a full-contact game of Global Thermonuclear War has kicked off. Otherwise, where and when would a local commander actually be handed nuclear weapons, delivery systems, and authorisation to use them as and when required? Would that really include "first use"?
 
Reasonably sure, yes. (Remember we're specifically talking about deployed squadrons)

If nothing else, deployed nuclear weapons get noticed: all that extra security and control measures. As US sailors back in the 1980s described, the "cannot confirm or deny" about whether a given ship was carrying nuclear weapons was needed because everyone aboard knew if they had embarked and were carrying "special weapons".

More generally, "tactical" nuclear weapons were contentious even back in the day, with acres of argument in professional forums about whether commanders really would get authority to pick targets, or whether nuclear weapons would remain under blanket central control.



This is why "common sense" is often misleading.

Is an air-dropped 20kt weapon strategic, or tactical? If the answer is "it could be either" then you need to understand what factors cause it to be one or the other.

For the only times nuclear weapons have actually been used, neither Tibbets nor Sweeney were handed their payloads and told "see if you find something worth dropping them on" - the decision to use nuclear weapons, and the selection of targets, was made at the highest levels. Therefore, the weapons were strategic.

We had "tactical nuclear weapons" - if you class by yield and delivery - in 1982; but Sandy Woodward didn't have the authority to have Sea Harriers loft a few friendly kilotons over Rio Gallegos airbase to suppress enemy air activity without asking London first. Likewise in 1991, Peter de la Billière didn't have nuclear options on the table, even though we had air-dropped variable-yield weapons in the inventory.

The reality of how nuclear weapons are seen as crossing a major threshold means that the only time "tactical nuclear weapons" make any sort of sense, is when serious megatonnage is already flying around and a few more small mushroom clouds will be lost in the noise.



And at that extreme, there's limited scope for debate - hence why land-based ICBMs are routinely lumped in as "strategic weapon systems".

Below that, "tactical nuclear weapons" become a theoretical construct, that some claim might be useful once a full-contact game of Global Thermonuclear War has kicked off. Otherwise, where and when would a local commander actually be handed nuclear weapons, delivery systems, and authorisation to use them as and when required? Would that really include "first use"?
Thanks for the thoughtful response. I see now that there are aspects that I was unaware of and this helps provide some context. I would say however that while doctrine clearly influences the platforms and weapons acquired, the platforms and weapons currently in inventory clearly also influence current doctrine, as well as the options available to commanders.

Whilst I agree that the likelihood of using nukes in a tactical battlefield sense is low, you don't even have the option use them if your platform is an SSBN in the North Atlantic launching ICBMs. A nation with air-dropped weapons has that optionality, not just in terms of how the weapons are deployed but also how they are used on the battlefield. They can have a credible aggressor policy and leave it up to the opponent to decide whether to escalate. I believe it was Pakistani policy to use nuclear weapons on Indian troops invading Pakistani soil, but to not target targets in India itself.

Anyway this is massive thread drift, and also far away from the point I was originally trying to make!
 
How? It has 2 25mm Bushmasters? the rest is bolt on stuff and could be added to a ship? we could do the same with Javelin and starstreak bolted to the side of it...
But we haven’t, despite the suggestion that some small surface to surface missiles in an an area were a swarming attack is a high probability, might be a very wise investment.
we do seem to wilfully refuse to learn.
After all, it took the seizing of two boats and their personnel by the Iranians to get the RN to belatedly heed the American advice that swanning around in waters the Iranians contest with unarmed boats is unwise, and some crew served weapons might be a useful addition. While flying the White Ensign gave substantial protection from the regular Iranian Navy, it provided no protection from the IRGC.

And that’s the issue right there. If the forward deployed OPVs were only going to meet regular naval forces, then yes, no need to upgun them, regular naval forces by and large play by the rules, and your ensign confers protection.
But alas, they are more likely to meet little nimrods like the IRGC who don’t play by the rule book and only understand Force, or the direct threat of it.
 
How not? Unless your battlefield is in the South Pacific.
Some I can think of:
  1. Increasing the chance of escalation - your opponent won't know the payload is low and will likely counter-strike
  2. Giving away the position of your deterrent and making it vulnerable to an attack effectively rendering it useless as a deterrent
  3. Difficulty in targeting and controlling the flight path of an ICBM
  4. Greatly increased chance of collateral damage as a result of #3
  5. Time from launch to bang, rendering it near useless against moving targets
  6. Difficulty of comms between the battlefield, central command, and the SSBN (?)
 
After all, it took the seizing of two boats and their personnel by the Iranians to get the RN to belatedly heed the American advice that swanning around in waters the Iranians contest with unarmed boats is unwise, and some crew served weapons might be a useful addition. While flying the White Ensign gave substantial protection from the regular Iranian Navy, it provided no protection from the IRGC.
You seem to be conveniently ignoring the incident involving two USN riverine craft which were captured by the IRGC near Farsi Island three and a half years ago. Their weapons did nothing for them.
 

Trans-sane

LE
Book Reviewer
Some I can think of:
  1. Increasing the chance of escalation - your opponent won't know the payload is low and will likely counter-strike
  2. Giving away the position of your deterrent and making it vulnerable to an attack effectively rendering it useless as a deterrent
  3. Difficulty in targeting and controlling the flight path of an ICBM
  4. Greatly increased chance of collateral damage as a result of #3
  5. Time from launch to bang, rendering it near useless against moving targets
  6. Difficulty of comms between the battlefield, central command, and the SSBN (?)
1/ Valid
2/ Unless they have extensive assets capable of top-tier ASW within a couple of hundred miles, not a hope in hell
3/ Valid but most likely irrelevant
4/ If you are throwing buckets of instant sunshine around, danger close is measured in map sheets
5/ Launch to bang is measured in minutes. And not many minutes either. It would take much longer to target and deploy a tactical weapon which is where the 3/ would actually become relevant.
6/ As opposed to the difficulty of coms between units of different services, operating under the control of different (sub)HQ in a theatre of operations? I think this is really a some from column A and some from column B point.
 
But we haven’t, despite the suggestion that some small surface to surface missiles in an an area were a swarming attack is a high probability, might be a very wise investment.
we do seem to wilfully refuse to learn.
After all, it took the seizing of two boats and their personnel by the Iranians to get the RN to belatedly heed the American advice that swanning around in waters the Iranians contest with unarmed boats is unwise, and some crew served weapons might be a useful addition. While flying the White Ensign gave substantial protection from the regular Iranian Navy, it provided no protection from the IRGC.

And that’s the issue right there. If the forward deployed OPVs were only going to meet regular naval forces, then yes, no need to upgun them, regular naval forces by and large play by the rules, and your ensign confers protection.
But alas, they are more likely to meet little nimrods like the IRGC who don’t play by the rule book and only understand Force, or the direct threat of it.
For a start they are not out here yet. But if they where out here then they would have multiple HMG , GPMG and MK44 Miniguns as well as DS30M. That's not exactly helpless.

The FIM-92 Stingers fitted to one of the Yank PB's could take out what? A P3 circling round? A UAV if you can spot it?

We could have RM teams with Jav out here now, its been looked into and trialed (because shock horror the navy do actually worry about these things). Problem is how will you keep them manned? RM only have so many Heavy Weapons Specialized guys out there and you need to rotate them home for leave and do other stuff.

Matelots to do it? Where are they going to fit in the course to learn to use it. Kick RM/Army off? How can the RN pay for the training rounds to get OPS? Where are they going to store the rounds? Do you know what the NEQ of a jav round is and what magazine arrangements are required to store it?

One thing you forget about the IRGC is that they may not be worried about that OPV, but if they mallet it, its bigger badder brother the T23 GP/T31/T26 comes along with the US 5th Fleet and ruins your day. So the force and ensign confers protection that way.

The only thing this would not work with in deniable ops using low tech assets that would be easily dealt with by DS30M and already fitted FP weaponry.
 
Some I can think of:
  1. Increasing the chance of escalation - your opponent won't know the payload is low and will likely counter-strike
  2. Giving away the position of your deterrent and making it vulnerable to an attack effectively rendering it useless as a deterrent
  3. Difficulty in targeting and controlling the flight path of an ICBM
  4. Greatly increased chance of collateral damage as a result of #3
  5. Time from launch to bang, rendering it near useless against moving targets
  6. Difficulty of comms between the battlefield, central command, and the SSBN (?)
1. Yeah, cos using little nukes as an early option isn't going to escalate matters.
2. At this point in the game, either we have already carried out our main strike, or we have, in the build up, crashed the other two boats out to sea.
3. YSC.
4. YSC.
5. What moving target do you foresee as suitable for a low yield nuclear weapon that couldn't be better tackled by something from our conventional armoury?
6. YSC.
 
[DRIFT]

Published by: defenceWeb, on 10 July 2019.

Seas off West Africa world’s worst for pirate attacks.

The seas around West Africa remain the world’s most dangerous for piracy, the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) latest report shows.

Of 75 seafarers taken hostage aboard or kidnapped for ransom worldwide so far this year, 62 were captured in the Gulf of Guinea – off the coasts of Nigeria, Guinea, Togo, Benin and Cameroon.
Worldwide, the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre (IMB PRC) recorded 78 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships in the first half of 2019, compared with 107 incidents for the same period of 2018. Overall, 57 vessels were boarded successfully, representing 73% of all attacks.

Pirates killed one person, took 38 crew members hostage and kidnapped a further 37 for ransom.
The IMB report reveals 73% of all kidnappings at sea and 92% of hostage-takings, happened in the Gulf of Guinea. Armed pirates in these high-risk waters kidnapped 27 crew members in the first half of 2019 and 25 in the same period in 2018. Two chemical tankers were hijacked as well as a tug then used in another attack. Of the nine vessels fired on worldwide, eight were off the coast of Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer. Attacks took place on average 65 nautical miles off the coast – classifying them as acts of piracy.

There are encouraging signs of improvement. IMB PRC reports “a welcome and marked decrease” in attacks in the Gulf of Guinea for the second quarter of 2019, commending the Nigerian navy for responding to reported incidents by dispatching patrol boats. While many attacks go unreported, IMB recorded 21 incidents around Nigeria to date in 2019, down from 31 in the same period of 2018.

Naval vessels from Equatorial Guinea and Spain intervened in May 2019 when a Nigerian tug was hijacked 41 nautical miles off Luba, Equatorial Guinea. Soon after, pirates used the tug to launch an attack on a Maltese heavy load carrier. The crew retreated into the ship’s citadel, a safe room for protection against attackers. When the navies responded pirates left the vessel and the crew were freed.

Despite the recent drop in Gulf of Guinea attacks, IMB urges seafarers in the region to remain vigilant and report all suspicious activity to regional response centres and the IMB PRC. “Early detection of an approaching suspicious craft is key to prevent boarding and give time to raise the alarm and retreat into a citadel, if needed,” said an IMB spokesperson.

In Malaysia, 10 crew members were kidnapped from two fishing boats off eastern Sabah in June. Nine crew are reported released.

Around Indonesia, ongoing information sharing co-operation between the Indonesian Marine Police and the IMB PRC continues to show positive results. The 11 incidents reported in Indonesian waters remains the lowest quarter two figure since 2009 when three incidents were reported.

1562847398976.png


Seas off West Africa world’s worst for pirate attacks - defenceWeb

[/DRIFT]
 

Trans-sane

LE
Book Reviewer
[DRIFT]

Published by: defenceWeb, on 10 July 2019.

Seas off West Africa world’s worst for pirate attacks.

The seas around West Africa remain the world’s most dangerous for piracy, the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) latest report shows.

Of 75 seafarers taken hostage aboard or kidnapped for ransom worldwide so far this year, 62 were captured in the Gulf of Guinea – off the coasts of Nigeria, Guinea, Togo, Benin and Cameroon.
Worldwide, the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre (IMB PRC) recorded 78 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships in the first half of 2019, compared with 107 incidents for the same period of 2018. Overall, 57 vessels were boarded successfully, representing 73% of all attacks.

Pirates killed one person, took 38 crew members hostage and kidnapped a further 37 for ransom.
The IMB report reveals 73% of all kidnappings at sea and 92% of hostage-takings, happened in the Gulf of Guinea. Armed pirates in these high-risk waters kidnapped 27 crew members in the first half of 2019 and 25 in the same period in 2018. Two chemical tankers were hijacked as well as a tug then used in another attack. Of the nine vessels fired on worldwide, eight were off the coast of Nigeria, Africa’s top oil producer. Attacks took place on average 65 nautical miles off the coast – classifying them as acts of piracy.

There are encouraging signs of improvement. IMB PRC reports “a welcome and marked decrease” in attacks in the Gulf of Guinea for the second quarter of 2019, commending the Nigerian navy for responding to reported incidents by dispatching patrol boats. While many attacks go unreported, IMB recorded 21 incidents around Nigeria to date in 2019, down from 31 in the same period of 2018.

Naval vessels from Equatorial Guinea and Spain intervened in May 2019 when a Nigerian tug was hijacked 41 nautical miles off Luba, Equatorial Guinea. Soon after, pirates used the tug to launch an attack on a Maltese heavy load carrier. The crew retreated into the ship’s citadel, a safe room for protection against attackers. When the navies responded pirates left the vessel and the crew were freed.

Despite the recent drop in Gulf of Guinea attacks, IMB urges seafarers in the region to remain vigilant and report all suspicious activity to regional response centres and the IMB PRC. “Early detection of an approaching suspicious craft is key to prevent boarding and give time to raise the alarm and retreat into a citadel, if needed,” said an IMB spokesperson.

In Malaysia, 10 crew members were kidnapped from two fishing boats off eastern Sabah in June. Nine crew are reported released.

Around Indonesia, ongoing information sharing co-operation between the Indonesian Marine Police and the IMB PRC continues to show positive results. The 11 incidents reported in Indonesian waters remains the lowest quarter two figure since 2009 when three incidents were reported.

View attachment 403339

Seas off West Africa world’s worst for pirate attacks - defenceWeb

[/DRIFT]
Which would be easy meat for even a batch 1 River class tbh...
 
One thing you forget about the IRGC is that they may not be worried about that OPV, but if they mallet it, its bigger badder brother the T23 GP/T31/T26 comes along with the US 5th Fleet and ruins your day. So the force and ensign confers protection that way.
Or the very large amount of Fast Air that is available in the Gulf. It's a team sport.
 

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