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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:00 am 
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Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda, but didn't. The aborted Russian ones are now Egypt's Mistrals. Totally new build Mistrals, especially those built in French yards, would probably make less political sense if certain British MPs in Scotland don't want the shipbuilding unions to vote against them.

UK Defence Journal

Quote:
Should the UK have purchased the French Mistral class amphibious warship?
By
Oliver Steward -
September 28, 2017

With the planned decommissioning of the HMS Ocean in 2018, there is a serious need for the Royal Navy to have a dedicated amphibious warfare capable ship in order to deploy the Royal Marines and a large number of helicopters during a crisis or a conflict situation.

The Egyptians recently purchased two Mistral Warships which were destined originally destined from Russia. The question is: should the UK have purchase similar ships from France? On a strategic level, certainly I would argue yes in the short term, but from a longer term political perspective this would not have been the appropriate decision for a number of reasons including:

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However, there are strategic reasons as to why the UK needs to have a ‘Mistral’ like amphibious ship. HMS Ocean (the current flagship of the Royal Navy) is currently involved in disaster relief operations in the Caribbean. She has also in the past bolstered NATO’s mission during its military interventions in Libya, and also during the 2003 Iraq War as part of a Royal Navy task force deployed under ‘Operation Telic’ in a helicopter assault role.

During the 2012 London Olympics she provided counter-terrorism operations providing logistical support and a helicopter landing site. The decommissioning of the HMS Ocean will mean there is a military gap in capabilities, and a new class of ship is needed to take on this role.

While purchasing Mistral class amphibious ships may have in the short term been able to augment the UK’s ability in carrying out amphibious assault capabilities, it would not have been realistic given the tightening of the UK defence budget, the manpower shortage in the Royal Navy, and the ongoing difficulties in the Royal Navy being able to operate a number of functions.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 12:14 pm 
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I think we should buy our ships from abroad, it would probably be much cheaper and provide a flexibility to the purchasing system that is sorely needed. Having said that I see a long term decline in the amphibious forces that will never be reversed. This will eventually be the fate of the RN as a whole.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 5:59 pm 
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Admiral John Byng wrote:
Having said that I see a long term decline in the amphibious forces that will never be reversed.


Did you come to this conclusion because the Royal Marines were recently down-sized drastically?

Devonlive

Quote:
MoD to cut 1,000 Royal Marines as part of bid to save £3bn a year

Cutting the size of the Royal Marines is among a number of options being considered. Other options include scrapping at least one amphibious assault ship

07:01, 23 SEP 2017
Updated07:03, 23 SEP 2017



The Royal Marines are facing a cut of 1,000 personnel as the Ministry of Defence seeks savings of up to £3 billion a year, The Times claimed.

Cutting the size of the Royal Marines is among a number of options being considered, the paper said. Other options include scrapping at least one amphibious assault ship.

Plymouth MP Luke Pollard accused the Government of coming up with “an accountant’s answer” to Britain’s military need.

Mr Pollard, Labour MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, said: “It looks like the mismanagement of the defence forces by the Conservatives is continuing.

(...SNIPPED)

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 3:43 am 
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Yes, the reduction in the Royal Marines is a real indicator that defence spending is a very low priority. The carriers only survived because it was too expensive to cancel them. The Type 26 has been limited to 8 units and it is not clear what capabilities the Type 31 will have.

According to this article the Type 26 will cost £800 Million each while the government has decided the Type 31 cannot exceed £250 Million.

http://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/shipbui ... oyal-navy/

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