Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

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AngloSaxonVangaurd
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Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Sat May 15, 2010 4:08 pm

Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

I think the Royal Navy is still very capable enough to win another Falklands war. Looking back in 1982 the RN had no AEW and many ships had their primary weapon systems disabled or not working properly to cut costs because of the lack of funds. Currently in 2010 the RN has no such issues.

Back in 1982 due to the lack of AEW the RN has to position a handful of Destroyers and frigates away from the main Carrier fleet to act as an early warning vessel looking out for an enemy air attack, giving the carrier group enough time to launch its aircraft and protect the main fleet. As a result most RN losses were those lone destroyers and frigates acting as an early warning vessel in the AEW role. RN doesn't have that problem today, we have dedicated AEW aircraft, plus unlike in 1982 our destroyer/frigate force all have decent anti air capabilities.

Numbers of war ships aren't a serious problem to-day, despite the critics. Though the RN cannot shrink any more, we are at the minimum level already.

Only down side is we no longer have the sea harrier, only the harrier GRs. However Fortress Falklands has 4 Typhoons which is more than enough to smash the Argentine air force back into the stone age. Harrier GRs are very capable dog-fighters, but they have no BVR capabilities and would have to rely on the Typhoons long range missiles until the Harriers get in range for a dog fight.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby José M. Rico » Sat May 15, 2010 5:09 pm

Hello,

When you ask if the Royal Navy is capable of another Falklands, are you thinking of another conflict with Argentina, or a Falklands type of war against a different oppenent?

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Sat May 15, 2010 6:43 pm

José M. Rico wrote:Hello,

When you ask if the Royal Navy is capable of another Falklands, are you thinking of another conflict with Argentina, or a Falklands type of war against a different oppenent?


With Argentina.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby Bgile » Sat May 15, 2010 7:33 pm

It would be pretty sad if the UK couldn't defeat Argentina's armed forces today.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Sun May 16, 2010 11:07 am

Bgile wrote:It would be pretty sad if the UK couldn't defeat Argentina's armed forces today.


It would be pretty sad. However looking at the Argentine military any conflict with the UK vs Argentina is laughable. A military conflict vs Brazil and Argentina would still be laughable.

Argentina alone doesn't have the capability to over-power the small garrison based on the Falklands.

4 Typhoons, 1 destroyer/Frigate, 500 British Army troops, ~ 200 FI militia, 1 RN patrol ship, 1 RFA supply ship, 1 large RN survey ship and a rumored SSN a few weeks ago.

Any conventional Argentine attack would be blown out of the water.

Argentina has 40 combat aircraft (~15 of those are old dated 3rd gen fighters with-out BVR capable missiles, rest are ground attack aircraft with next to 0 air to air capability)

With such small numbers and the fact some of those aircraft would be in storage/servicing, Argentina wouldn't be able to mount an air attack larger than, say, 6 combat aircraft (a mix of 2 fighters and 4 ground attack). The RAF flight of 4 Typhoons would be more than enough.

Argentina has 4 light destroyers, 3 dated SSKs and 1 (800ton) landing vessel. Again the 4 Typhoons armed with anti ship missiles, would do serious damage to any Argentine fleet trying to land troops on Falklands soil using its single small landing vessel. Not to mention the RN Destroyer and nuclear SSN based around the Falklands waters.

That small gap of water between the Falklands and Argentina is watched 24/7 with radar, patrol aircraft and war ships. Argentina simply lacks the ability to fight through the British defences. It would be target practice for the British. And if any thing did happen a task force would be dispatched before you can say argie bargie

Question is what sized fleet is needed to be deployed to the Falklands? I would say this would be a good task force;

Carrier task Force; - Forward fleet
1 x Invincible carrier
2 x tanker/supply
2 x t-42 Destroyer
2 x t 23 Frigate
1 x t-22 Frigate
1 x Trafalgar SSN

Amphibious Task Force; - rear fleet
1 x Albion LPD
1 x HMS Ocean Helictoper carrier
1 x Bay class LPD
2 x tanker supply
2 x t-23 frigates
1 x t-22 frigates
1 x Trafalgar SSN

RFA/Merchant navy fleet;
1 x RFA argus - hospital ship
10 x other RFA ships holding supplys and weponry (helicopters, fighters, extra missiles etc etc)

Aby task force like above could also meet up with Royal navy T-42 destroyers patroling the north atlantic too boost the task forces AAW.
HMS Daring could also be deployed if her aster missiles worked.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby RF » Mon May 17, 2010 9:22 am

AngloSaxonVangaurd wrote:Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

I think the Royal Navy is still very capable enough to win another Falklands war.


There is a considerable body of opinion in the armed forces general staff who do not agree, and have criticised both the size of garrison and its logistical support.

It may well be that Argentina does not today have sufficient armed force, firepower and logistics to both seize and then hold the Falklands. That is what is being relied upon with present British defence policy. that is the specific rationale behind the Mount Pleasant airbase, the line of reinforcement from Asencion Island, being downgraded to ''care and maintenance basis.''

The fear of the military staff is that if the islands were suddenly seized in a surprise operation the RN no longer has the capability to win the islands back. The forces detailed in you last post AngloSaxonVanguard would be insufficient.
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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby RF » Mon May 17, 2010 9:30 am

AngloSaxonVangaurd wrote:
Bgile wrote:
A military conflict vs Brazil and Argentina would still be laughable.


Such a conflict is not laughable. It will not happen because it is in neither countries interest to do so, not least because there is nothing for either to gain.

That won't stop the military staffs of both countries from considering such a conflict as an academic excercise, in the same way that the British consider and plan for hypothetical conflict against a whole host of opposition forces, both friendly and hostile.
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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby Bgile » Mon May 17, 2010 10:03 am

RF wrote:
AngloSaxonVangaurd wrote:
Bgile wrote:
A military conflict vs Brazil and Argentina would still be laughable.


Such a conflict is not laughable. It will not happen because it is in neither countries interest to do so, not least because there is nothing for either to gain.

That won't stop the military staffs of both countries from considering such a conflict as an academic excercise, in the same way that the British consider and plan for hypothetical conflict against a whole host of opposition forces, both friendly and hostile.


Of course they would both plan for contingencies, but my impression of the Argentine forces is they are essentially the same as at the end of the Falkands war, but much older. That is why I used the term "laughable". I consider the condition of the Argentine armed forces to be pretty bad from a readiness point of view.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Mon May 17, 2010 12:35 pm

RF wrote:
AngloSaxonVangaurd wrote:Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

I think the Royal Navy is still very capable enough to win another Falklands war.


There is a considerable body of opinion in the armed forces general staff who do not agree, and have criticised both the size of garrison and its logistical support.

It may well be that Argentina does not today have sufficient armed force, firepower and logistics to both seize and then hold the Falklands. That is what is being relied upon with present British defence policy. that is the specific rationale behind the Mount Pleasant airbase, the line of reinforcement from Asencion Island, being downgraded to ''care and maintenance basis.''

The fear of the military staff is that if the islands were suddenly seized in a surprise operation the RN no longer has the capability to win the islands back. The forces detailed in you last post AngloSaxonVanguard would be insufficient.


Why is the forces i detailed insufficient, and what would a sufficient force consist of?

Top military staff seeking a boost to defence will certainly criticise the armed forces capability to win another Falklands. Thus fighting their case for more equipment and troops.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby RF » Tue May 18, 2010 8:21 am

The top military staff you refer to have been specifically criticising the reduced capabilities of our armed forces for the entire length of the last Labour Government. Their views have been reported in the British press, especially the Daily Mail. Beyond saying that these defence chiefs are ''Tories'', Labour ignored them.

Any force assigned to retake a group of islands on the other side of the world, as effectively the Falklands are, must be substantially bigger than the attacking force with its relatively close to home bases. The Task Force in 1982 was heavily criticised at the start of that operation for being weak in air power and numbers, even though those fears weren't fully realised - but the Task Force took losses which a fleet with greater firepower and air power would not have done.
I would regard a minimum force of three major fleet carriers as being essential for the job in today's situation. 1982 was a close run thing, fortunately it went Britain's way - just.
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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Tue May 18, 2010 11:16 am

RF wrote:The top military staff you refer to have been specifically criticising the reduced capabilities of our armed forces for the entire length of the last Labour Government. Their views have been reported in the British press, especially the Daily Mail. Beyond saying that these defence chiefs are ''Tories'', Labour ignored them.

Any force assigned to retake a group of islands on the other side of the world, as effectively the Falklands are, must be substantially bigger than the attacking force with its relatively close to home bases. The Task Force in 1982 was heavily criticised at the start of that operation for being weak in air power and numbers, even though those fears weren't fully realised - but the Task Force took losses which a fleet with greater firepower and air power would not have done.
I would regard a minimum force of three major fleet carriers as being essential for the job in today's situation. 1982 was a close run thing, fortunately it went Britain's way - just.


1982 was close run thanks to the lack of AEW. Thus a handful of Destroyers and Frigates were stationed miles away from the Carrier Task Force acting as a Early Warning Vessel watching for an enemy air attack. Result being those few escorts were sitting ducks and swamped by the enemy's air attack. However this was to keep the carriers safe giving the Harriers time to get in the air and protect the main fleet. Lack of AEW meant any merchant or RN ship on their own away from the fleet was vulnerable for air attack, and that is exactly where 99% of all RN losses happened.

Today with dedicated AEW all escorts would stay in their task forces and any RN losses would be next to nothing. Plus unlike in the 1982 all RN escorts have very capable anti air capabilities. Fact is a large fleet like in 1982 isn't needed, this is 2010.

However the only way the RN can win another Falklands is if the RAF base on the Falklands stays under British control, this way a naval fleet can transport extra Typhoons to boost air defences protecting the fleet. The 4 Typhoons is more than enough to smash the Argentine air force, but the 4 Typhoons are only deployed to defend the Falklands, they simply aren't enough to also protect the fleet. So more Typhoons would have to be deployed.

The 2 SSNs would most certainly mean the tiny Argentine Navy of 4 under armed destroyers and 3 dated SSKs would run back home to their ports. So a direct naval confrontation wouldn't happen.

Fact is, Argentine air force has 5 strategic transport aircraft and the Argentine navy has 1 small landing vessel. That's a capability to deploy some 400-600 troops fully armed with equipment. If the 4 Typhoons and RN Destroyer didn't manage to take these out over some 100 miles of ocean before they reach the Falklands, then even then, 600 Argentine troops wouldn't be able to take the RAF base on the Falklands. Remember the British Army has 500 troops on the Falklands with a 100-200 strong Falklands Militia in support, and unlike the 600 Argentine troops our forces are protected by Typhoons in the air. At most Argentina may be able to get a few ground attack aircraft past our Typhoons to give support to the Argentine troops, but the chances of that is slim. In fact realistically any conventional Argentine attack trying to land 600 troops on the Falklands would fail.

Argentine military looks to be made up of the weapons we didn't destroy in 1982. lol

Any Future Falklands war wouldnt be a close run thing again, size isnt the be all and end all, however the RN cannot shrink any more.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Tue May 18, 2010 11:36 am

Trident should not be paid for out of the Defence budget, it should be put under a totaly different budget. Defence spending for our conventional forces should be increaced to 3.5% of GDP. Royal Navy must be the priority of defence spending. Territorial army should be boosted to 50,000 troops and become more involved in regular deployments. Regular army should be increaced from 114,000/115,000 to 130,000.

Back in the 1800s The Royal Navy recived 25% of public spending, and the MoD only consisted of 22 people. Today the RN recives 2.5% of public spending and the MoD has 88,000 people.

MoD should be cut right down to 30,000 people in the Tory SDR and their wages cut. MoD office staff shouldnt earn more than soilders! Its a waste on the defence budget. MoD costs should be brought under the same budget as Trident as both the MoD and Trident are highly dependant on civilian staff and do not add to the conventional forces.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby RF » Wed May 19, 2010 7:53 am

I would largely agree with the last post. It is contingent on whether the new government is really serious on defence matters or simply going through the motions on a political fudge basis.

I am not convinced that only a relatively small force is required to protect or to retake the Falklands. Too many assumptions are being built into the scenario detailed here which leave no adequate fallback where things go wrong. Saying anti-aircraft defence on small warships is vastly improved today compared with thirty years ago is easy, the real test is when the ships have to go to war and then it is too late for retrieving mis-calculation.
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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby AngloSaxonVangaurd » Wed May 19, 2010 2:54 pm

RF wrote:I would largely agree with the last post. It is contingent on whether the new government is really serious on defence matters or simply going through the motions on a political fudge basis.

I am not convinced that only a relatively small force is required to protect or to retake the Falklands. Too many assumptions are being built into the scenario detailed here which leave no adequate fallback where things go wrong. Saying anti-aircraft defence on small warships is vastly improved today compared with thirty years ago is easy, the real test is when the ships have to go to war and then it is too late for retrieving mis-calculation.


As long as the Typhoons currently based on the Falklands still fly and can be boosted by a task force transporting more Typhoons then only a small naval task force is needed.
Most navy's world wide would stay to bed if a Royal navy task force was heading in their direction. SSNs dominate naval warfare. Any RN task force like the one i suggested with 2 SSNs could end a second Falklands with one strike on an Argentine air based. Modern warfare is that sweet and only 3 navy's world wide are capable of such.

Brazil the most powerful south American nation can only boast 9 dated frigates (all old British crap) with an x French carrier who's air wing makes the Argentine air force look like a fleet of brand new F-22s. The Brazilian air force can also boast only 20 or so true 3rd gen fighters capable of very limited air defence. The UK could box up the Brazilian military quite easily.

Only real apparant limit to the Royal Navy is the lack of air defence fighter for the carriers, which means in a conflict the RN must have support from the RAF.

I hope a conflict happens soon so this Tory government realy sees the true importance of the Royal Navy and re-build it back up to strength.

US Navy looks to be shrinking at a faster rate than the RN. US Navy looks set to shrink from 110 escorts to around 70-80, its SSN fleet from 53 to 40-42 and its Super-carrier fleet from 11 to 6. US Navy hasn't had a real conflict since ww2 and it needs one fast other wise the US navy will surely shrink further.

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Re: Royal Navy capable of another Falklands?

Postby RF » Wed May 19, 2010 6:16 pm

AngloSaxonVangaurd wrote:[As long as the Typhoons currently based on the Falklands still fly and can be boosted by a task force transporting more Typhoons then only a small naval task force is needed.


But what if they can't? What happens when things go wrong? Too much reliance on ''safe'' assumptions here.
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