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Do we need a like-for-like replacement of Trident? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Should we replace Trident?
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    (Original post by MatureStudent36)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapier_%28missile%29

    I think you may be wrong on Rapier as it was only a 10 year development programme as a private venture.
    It wasn't a 10 year development programme, because Rapier was being uprgraded and integrated with other stuff up until recently. The original 1970s unit bears only passing resemblance to the thing doing the rounds at the 2012 Olympics. The original thing didn't have the Electro-Optical Tracker or the DN181 radar, either - which contributed in a big way to the high cost of the system as a whole.

    I can guarantee you that I'm not mistaking it for anything else. I think I can tell Rapier when I see it.
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    (Original post by Clip)
    It wasn't a 10 year development programme, because Rapier was being uprgraded and integrated with other stuff up until recently. The original 1970s unit bears only passing resemblance to the thing doing the rounds at the 2012 Olympics. The original thing didn't have the Electro-Optical Tracker or the DN181 radar, either - which contributed in a big way to the high cost of the system as a whole.

    I can guarantee you that I'm not mistaking it for anything else. I think I can tell Rapier when I see it.
    the dispute over the assertions made about rapier is the claim that it's the second most expensive weapon system evAr
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    (Original post by Clip)
    It wasn't a 10 year development programme, because Rapier was being uprgraded and integrated with other stuff up until recently. The original 1970s unit bears only passing resemblance to the thing doing the rounds at the 2012 Olympics. The original thing didn't have the Electro-Optical Tracker or the DN181 radar, either - which contributed in a big way to the high cost of the system as a whole.

    I can guarantee you that I'm not mistaking it for anything else. I think I can tell Rapier when I see it.

    It's not the second most expensive defence project after trident. If it were it would be in military folklore.


    off the top of my head. Military folklore states nimrod AEW, TSR2, euro fighter, blue steel, CVA1. Not rapier.
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    Only figure I can find for the Rapier is £1.8b, dwarfed massively by the £4b cost of the Nimrod MRA.4. Which is more pertinent as the Nimrod was cancelled, whereas the Rapier has at least been in service since 1970 and been exported around the world.
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    (Original post by de_monies)
    OK valid argument but playing devils advocate here. Let's say it snows pretty much every year, so it makes sense to have grit

    We don't have a nuclear war every year...

    Snow stays for a couple days.

    A nuclear winter would last up to two years.

    So, relatively speaking, you've got a window 365x larger that you can prepare for a nuclear war in before it's less of a risky time based financial investment than snow preventatives. Which means if we had preventatives for another 300 years it would still be less of a gamble than worrying about grit for snow every December March.
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    (Original post by Thomas2)

    I'm not saying we necessarily should abandon it but perhaps the UK could make a more useful contribution to global security by spending the money on its conventional forces which are suffering from years of underfunding?
    Are you serious?

    Only three other nations have higher spending on their military than us, The US, China and Russia. We have one of the best trained and best funded militaries on earth given our size.

    When I hear the suggestion lets increase conventional force strength all I can think is are you actually insane?
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    (Original post by Will Lucky)
    Are you serious?

    Only three other nations have higher spending on their military than us, The US, China and Russia. We have one of the best trained and best funded militaries on earth given our size.

    When I hear the suggestion lets increase conventional force strength all I can think is are you actually insane?
    Post Afghan, that'll be 120,000 troops sat around in Aldershot and Catterick doing nothing until some politician decides to cut them as part of a cost saving measure.

    Trident gives us more bang for our buck, and conventional forces are useless againsta nuclear threat. Consider it as the mouse that roared. You can have the largest standing army in the world and it's useless if the other guys have the bomb.
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    (Original post by Will Lucky)
    Are you serious?

    Only three other nations have higher spending on their military than us, The US, China and Russia. We have one of the best trained and best funded militaries on earth given our size.

    When I hear the suggestion lets increase conventional force strength all I can think is are you actually insane?
    No, they are wanting an adequately sized Armed Forces for the job(s) they are given by the Government. Our budget is not being used effectively. We waste far too much on equipment at bloated prices, on nonsense posts and on far too many senior officers.
    You quote 3 other countries as having bigger budgets than we do. But look at their manpower.

    For an island nation to have a navy of around 30,000 people is criminal. Our air force is similarly minute, with fewer and fewer squadrons by the year and the Army is approaching the 100,000 mark.
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    No, they are wanting an adequately sized Armed Forces for the job(s) they are given by the Government. Our budget is not being used effectively. We waste far too much on equipment at bloated prices, on nonsense posts and on far too many senior officers.
    You quote 3 other countries as having bigger budgets than we do. But look at their manpower.

    For an island nation to have a navy of around 30,000 people is criminal. Our air force is similarly minute, with fewer and fewer squadrons by the year and the Army is approaching the 100,000 mark.
    I'll agree with you on the Navy bit. That needs massivly increasing in Size to at two carriers with CATOBAR and F35C's.
    10 Type 45's
    14 Type 26s
    10 SSNs

    And I'm going to be radical here and add

    4 SSKs
    8 Corvettes.

    The last two can be used to free up other assets from ASW tarining, Counter Piracy and in times of war can be your cheap units that you don't mind loosing on risky stuff.

    Althuogh our Amphibious capabaility is still strong.

    Either way, scrapping Trident isn't going to get you that. And it still doesn't overcome the issue that the other guys can have a tiny military, but Nukes are a massive force multiplier.
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    It also has to be noted that the RAF appears smaller through the rationalisation of Strike types to two

    Typhoon and (until the f35orfollowing it's binning SuperBug ) Tornado GR4...

    Also the Typhoon is a single fleet with the mk4 rather than 2 main fleets( F3 and GR1/4 and fleets within a fleet (e.g. ef3 and ASuW GRs) that the Tonka had ...

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    (Original post by zippyRN)
    It also has to be noted that the RAF appears smaller through the rationalisation of Strike types to two

    Typhoon and (until the f35orfollowing it's binning SuperBug ) Tornado GR4...

    Also the Typhoon is a single fleet with the mk4 rather than 2 main fleets( F3 and GR1/4 and fleets within a fleet (e.g. ef3 and ASuW GRs) that the Tonka had ...
    The RAF appears smaller because it is smaller. Having 'only two' types of frontline aircraft is only part of the issue, it's having such a paltry amount of both in service which really affects things.
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    The RAF appears smaller because it is smaller. Having 'only two' types of frontline aircraft is only part of the issue, it's having such a paltry amount of both in service which really affects things.
    Just remember though, the RAF like the Army aren't fighting a WW2 style situation.

    A Typhoon Squadron is a lot more capable than a Spitfire Squadron of WW2.

    An Infantry Company now can do as much damage, if not more than a regiment from WW2.

    The shooty things have got more accurate and more reliable.

    The only issue is when you come to the Navy, with the advent of Radar and Sonars that far surpasse what was available in WW2, the problem with the Navy is that they have to spend most of their time with that equipment turned off as it gives their position away. We need more hulls in the Navy. We are an island nation after all.

    It would appear that after long last, the Government may be reversing it's East of Suez Strategy.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...s-in-Gulf.html
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    (Original post by MatureStudent36)
    Just remember though, the RAF like the Army aren't fighting a WW2 style situation.

    A Typhoon Squadron is a lot more capable than a Spitfire Squadron of WW2.

    An Infantry Company now can do as much damage, if not more than a regiment from WW2.

    The shooty things have got more accurate and more reliable.

    The only issue is when you come to the Navy, with the advent of Radar and Sonars that far surpasse what was available in WW2, the problem with the Navy is that they have to spend most of their time with that equipment turned off as it gives their position away. We need more hulls in the Navy. We are an island nation after all.

    It would appear that after long last, the Government may be reversing it's East of Suez Strategy.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...s-in-Gulf.html
    It doesn't matter how capable across the spectrum a plane/regiment/ship is, it can still only be in one place at a time.
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    It doesn't matter how capable across the spectrum a plane/regiment/ship is, it can still only be in one place at a time.
    True, but they have longer legs now.

    Spitfire Range = 470miles
    Typhoon Range = 750miles

    .303 Machine Gun Range = 600m
    AAM Missile Range = 75,000m +

    Plus the speed difference.

    You can do a lot more now with a lot less.

    TF Helmand = 10,000
    Cyprus Garrison circ 1950's = 58,000
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    typhoon 100 in service of 146 or 160 ( depending on source) ordered

    tornado IDS (gr 4) 120 ish ...

    hardly paltry given the punch that 4 and 4.5 g aircraft pack especially carrying weapon systems like Storm Shadow

    The UK also have armed UAVs as well...

    also don't forget that the AAC now has 66 Apache ,

    plus the 33 AH9 lynx ( to remain in service) and 50ish AH7s to be replaced by 34 Wildcat and the FAA's 30 + lynx to be replaced for 28 Wlidcat ...
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    (Original post by zippyRN)
    typhoon 100 in service of 146 ordered

    tornado IDS (gr 4) 120 ish ...

    hardly paltry given the punch that 4 and 4.5 g aircraft pack
    100 delivered isn't the same as 100 in service. Every flying station is littered with so-called 'christmas tree' airframes, who's parts have been stripped to make the other aircraft flyable. With the QRA north and south requirements, OCU training requirements, Falklands AD and Afg deployments the 'spare' capacity of the Typhoons is tiny, so much so that the hours pilots actually get to fly is nowhere near NATOs requirements.

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    The article is a year or two old, but the situation will have only gotten worse since then: "The Nato minimum is that pilots should fly 180 hours per annum. In the RAF, figures obtained from the Ministry of Defence by a national newspaper revealed that at the end of 2008 crews of warplanes like the Tornado F3 fighter, the Tornado GR4 ground attack plane and the Harrier fighter bomber had flown an average of just over 100 hours that year.

    Crews of the new Eurofighter Typhoon had done a little more, at 140 hours in the year, but were still below Nato’s minimum standard."


    Tornados fair a little better in that they have fewer ongoing requirements and a larger available fleet, but it is an older and less capable airframe.

    The situation is no doubt the same for the RN and the Army, but I'm not as up to date on the specifics with them.
    Our forces suffer a lot because we have a "make do and mend" attitude to most things; that a bit of bodge tape will sort anything out. Sooner or later we're going to lose - and lose big.
 
 
 
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