Our European Friends

Cutaway

LE
Kit Reviewer
AFAIK, all the scandals related to prince Laurent are financial.

He had a complicated childhood with separated parents. He once shaved his head, some said it was to draw attention, others because of a break up with his GF....at any rate a troubled individual.
Not because of regs, boule á zero ?
 
I went to school in Belgium for a couple of years and we spoke Belgian French (as distinct from Walloon) which is broadly similar to French with a few exceptions on individual words etc. We didn't learn Flemish at school (I seem to remember that they tried to teach us a bit in cub scouts) and I didn't have any Flemish speaking friends despite the fact that we lived right on the (internal) border between the French and Flemish halves of the country. Our two local supermarkets (both Delhaize iirc) had staff speaking different languages despite being only a couple of miles apart.

I am, genuinely, not surprised that even now speakers of one do not speak the other.
IN Shape in the late seventies, Mons was in a Walloon area. A complete shithole. All the women were ugly as sin except strangly some in their mid thirties. Found out later that their was an SS Heavy Panzer Battalion formed and trained in Mons on the Belgium training area on which SHAPE was built in 1967 when old big nose kicked Nato HQ out of Paris. Schwere SS Panzer Abteilung 101 formed in late 1943/early 44 and committed to Normandy where Michael Wittman won fame at Villiers Bocage against element's of 7 Armoured Division.

We used to go to Ostend for weekends in the spring and summer. Tourist from all over Europe were there. Attempt to use any French and the locals would say "don't use that shit, just speak English." I think Ostend was in quite a hardline Flemish nationlist area.
 
I met a Belgian soldier from SHAPE in Kandahar . He asked if it was true that he could get the darts on his computer (BFBS DVT) I told him that I would do it.
Six months later he was in Brussum (NATO) and ask me to take him to another Belgian WO.
I took him and they started chatting in English which was the accepted way when and English speaker was present.
I told them that I was off so speak their Mickey Mouse language, they said that they could not. Again I told them that I was going.
At this point they told me they have to speak in English as one spoke Dutch/English and one spoke French/English
Drift/
There‘s an organisation in France called ‘France Passion’, for a few euros, you get a map and guide book to places that make products such as champagne, cider, honey and saucisson which allow you to park your motorhome overnight for free. At one such location in Champagne, we found ourselves parked next to a monstrous Norwegian Motorhome, the (2 scooter) garage section at the rear of which was completely racked out for wine cases. We go on the tour of the cave, Senior Norgies speak no French, but daughter knows a little English, Monsieur speaks no English, but I learnt un peut French in school, so there follows a game of Charades/Chinese whispers worthy of a Blackadder sketch liberally oiled with decent champagne. The Norgies fill their racks (the price differential more than pays for the fuel from Norway and back), Monsieur is happy, and we’re pïssed on his coin.
Another night and another vineyard, Madame starts the tour (they start with the cheap stuff and work up to the decent stuff) in slow French for the foreigners, then Monsieur turns up. Somehow, ØA ( fluent German but no French) gets chatting to Monsieur about hunting boar in Germany, and suddenly we’re bezzies, tour is cancelled and we hit the good stuff. Eventually we buy several cases and as we‘re leaving, Monsieur scoops up the half bottles of various and sticks them in a box “to have with dinner”...

We like Europeans. Not so keen on the EU though.
/drift
 

BuggerAll

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I did some convoy escorts picking up wagons at the French border and watching them through Belgium safely to the docks - its amazing where the MoD goes shopping. The bloke who came along to act as the fixer was the transport manager from Antwerp. I can do English, and boxhead, and muddle through in Cloggie, but this bloke had 5 languages down pat. He spoke; English, German, French, Dutch, and either Flemish, or Walloon. I once took part in a conversation with him and a few others where he was more or less doing simultaneous translation of 4 languages whilst also being one of the negotiators.
My maternal grandfather's father was Dutch speaking Belgium and his mother English. He spoke Dutch and English courtesy of his parents, French at boarding school in Belgium, Latin ditto, Italian and Spanish because if you can speak Latin and French why wouldn't you ditto German and could make himself understood in Afrikaans. Before the war he was a chef. He joined the RAF and volunteered to be a chef or translator. Naturally they made him a Flight Engineer on bombers. Doubly unusual because he was already in his 30s and it was generally a game for sprogs.

I did not inherit his capacity for languages.
 
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Lucky that the Walloon (French speaker) spoke English. Usually in my (somewhat dated, I’ll admit) experience, they only spoke French. Whereas the Flemings (Dutch speakers) usually spoke reasonable French, German and English.

Used to go out on Lake Tanganyika on Sundays with a few mates and the SF security bods from the Belg Embassy in Bujumbura. My French is about the level where I can get a bit nosy about my aunt's pen but fluent in Afrikaans, which I used with Belg mates when we tied off all the boats, sailboards, jetskis and Belg mil RIBs a few km offshore and dived into the beers we'd brought along while playing dice and talking shit.

Flemish and Afrikaans very similar and quite easy to communicate, so much so that a mate who was born and raised in Burundi who is Flemish by descent but educated in Burundi in French and speaks no Vlaams, was taught Afrikaans by his Saffer missus and chats to his Flemish mates and family in that language.
 
IOT replace its Hummer and Dingo, Luxembourg is, according to a Belgian blog, going to join the Scorpion project which already includes FRA and BEL

 
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IOT replace its Hummer and Dingo, Luxembourg is, according to a Belgian blog, going to join the Scorpion project which already includes FRA and BEL

That'll be another six vehicles then! ;)
 
The other half is Greek and there are two things that she dislike’s the first being Turks and the second Communists. As to the Greek military the only part of it I have had any dealings with is one of her cousins that was in one of their SF units and I can happily say that some on cocked up when selecting the little fat dumpling.
 
Beijing is concentrating minds in SE Asia.
Vietnamese vessels carried out most of last year's incursions into Indonesian waters. They've also got running disputes with most of their other ASEAN partners.

Since independence, Indonesia has seen itself as both a maritime nation and as a regional leader - it was one of the driving forces behind ASEAN in the first place - and it spends on its navy accordingly.
 
Vietnamese vessels carried out most of last year's incursions into Indonesian waters. They've also got running disputes with most of their other ASEAN partners.

Since independence, Indonesia has seen itself as both a maritime nation and as a regional leader - it was one of the driving forces behind ASEAN in the first place - and it spends on its navy accordingly.
Indonesia comprises 17,508 islands (officially named) which might be why it sees itself as a maritime nation.
 
Indonesia comprises 17,508 islands (officially named) which might be why it sees itself as a maritime nation.
Indonesia and several other countries fall in to a special category under international law, which define them as "archipelagic states". As an archipelagic state Indonesia's sovereign waters include all the waters enclosed within the archipelago. This is a huge area, and constitutes the majority of the country.

There are three archipelagic sea lanes (ASL) defined by international agreement through Indonesian waters which provide greater rights than are normally permitted through sovereign waters. See the map below. Ships wishing to pass through these sea lanes must stick to within a specified distance of the central axis of each sea lane.

Screenshot 2021-06-10 at 23-49-57 Slide 1 - PAPER7-1 PDF.png


There are three main sea routes between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. One is the Straits of Malacca, which Indonesia shares with Malaysia, and the other two are the Sunda Straits, between Java and Sumatra, and the Lombok Straits, to the east of Java. The Lombok Straits are important because they are deeper than the straits of Malacca or Sunda, and so are favoured by larger ships such as the largest oil tankers.

Indonesia's prime maritime concerns are a) defence and control of their internal archipelagic waters, and b) enforcing access rules for ASLs.

Indonesia sits in between Australia (and by extension the US) and south east Asia, and between India and south east Asia, and the best sea routes lie through their waters. A good analogy is their position is like that of Switzerland, who control many of the best mountain passes between northern Europe and the Mediterranean.

As such, they are potentially right in the middle of a future WWIII. Also like Switzerland, they appear to wish to remain neutral rather than get caught up in this potential war.

So, Indonesia need a navy capable of defending their waters and discouraging their use by potential participants in a war.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
Beijing is concentrating minds in SE Asia.

....which is hardly surprising:

Luyang-III Class / Type 052D Destroyers - Naval Technology

This is an old article.

The Chinese Navy PLA(N) crews and puts to sea 12 of these vessels. They aren't rusting or laid-up in 'preservation' eg moth-balled.

1623398187271.png

Purty uh ?


UK equivalent might be ......er....well, truth to tell AFAIK we don't HAVE an equivalent, as the RN Type 45 equates to a frigate rather than a Guided Missile Destroyer.

They do 30 knots and carry a VLS Surface to Air missile system (akin to the old BAE Sea Wolf but heavier) with a reported intercept speed of Mach 4.2.

Combat ceiling N/K - but even our old systems could give you a severe fright at 60,000 feet......

@Yokel and @jrwlynch may have more recent info.

( Hmmm...I wonder what would the RN do with 12 x fully crewed operational GMD's and 61 x Type 45 style 'frigates' ?....worry the sh1t out of CINCEASTLANT I suspect)

Look at the numbers:

 

riksavage

Old-Salt
Not sure why you class a T45 8.5K ton Destroyer as a Frigate? The Chinese Destroyer you mention is 7.5K ton.

Whilst the name Destroyer comes from pre-WW1 ‘Torpedo Boat Destroyer’, they've evolved as a class that now focuses on wide-area defense of a Naval task group. Frigates,(Commonwealth Navies) tend to focus on hunting and killing submarines.
 
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Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
I stand corrected....and we have 6 of them ( class of 12 were planned but....)

Type 45 destroyer - Wikipedia

And our 61 x frigates?

Oh, wait....now down to THREE Type 23s....and one Type 26 HMS Glasgow....first steel cut in 2017 and still not commissioned?
 

QRK2

LE
Indonesia and several other countries fall in to a special category under international law, which define them as "archipelagic states". As an archipelagic state Indonesia's sovereign waters include all the waters enclosed within the archipelago. This is a huge area, and constitutes the majority of the country.

There are three archipelagic sea lanes (ASL) defined by international agreement through Indonesian waters which provide greater rights than are normally permitted through sovereign waters. See the map below. Ships wishing to pass through these sea lanes must stick to within a specified distance of the central axis of each sea lane.

View attachment 580457

There are three main sea routes between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. One is the Straits of Malacca, which Indonesia shares with Malaysia, and the other two are the Sunda Straits, between Java and Sumatra, and the Lombok Straits, to the east of Java. The Lombok Straits are important because they are deeper than the straits of Malacca or Sunda, and so are favoured by larger ships such as the largest oil tankers.

Indonesia's prime maritime concerns are a) defence and control of their internal archipelagic waters, and b) enforcing access rules for ASLs.

Indonesia sits in between Australia (and by extension the US) and south east Asia, and between India and south east Asia, and the best sea routes lie through their waters. A good analogy is their position is like that of Switzerland, who control many of the best mountain passes between northern Europe and the Mediterranean.

As such, they are potentially right in the middle of a future WWIII. Also like Switzerland, they appear to wish to remain neutral rather than get caught up in this potential war.

So, Indonesia need a navy capable of defending their waters and discouraging their use by potential participants in a war.

This may be of interest wrt to Indonesia/Timor/Oz territorial waters also a bit of good background on relevant international conventions.

 
Sweden has ordered some MBDA MMP ATK missiles for trials, possibly for its RBS 58 program.

In French only so far.


 
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