Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Your Sunday Morning Jet Noise

Air ops on HMS Ark Royal:

When she was decommissioned in 1979, the Royal Navy lost its ability to operate CTOL fighters at sea. After decade upon decade of budget cuts, the Brits are arguable done as anything other than a regional player.

If the Argies took the Falklands again, the Brits would have a far more difficult task with no carriers or long-range bombers available to them. Which is likely why the Brits are looking at making it even harder for them to do so.


CenterPuke88 said...

The UK has no real ability to retake the Falklands at this time, and hasn't since before the thru-deck Ark Royal was decommissioned in 2011. Come 2020 or so, when the Queen Elizabeth comes online, the window for the Argentinians starts to close. The one thing that will remain a thorn in the British side is the lack of a long-range bomber.

Despite the fact that the QE carrier is a STOL carrier, it's large enough to support enough of a force to offset the inherent weakness of running F-35's and chopper based AWACS. The F-35B at least makes the Argentinians job more difficult because of a combat radius 50% larger than that of the harrier. Then, once the Prince of Wales comes online (likely to be named Ark Royal instead), the two will provide a sufficient force to allow an assault on the Falklands, if there are enough destroyers and frigates to protect them.

I expect the Chinese to eventually step up to the plate and provide Argentina with newer jets, but probably just enough to keep the power a little more balanced. It's in their interest to keep the British watching the Argentinians, not to allow the Argentinians to retake the Falklands. The Argentinian economy and government are dysfunctional enough to keep the Falklands pretty secure.

Stewart Dean said...

CP88, I was with you right up until this: 'The Argentinian economy and government are dysfunctional enough to keep the Falklands pretty secure"

All too often, such a situation will drive towards a "short, victorious war" to distract the people, ala, the Crimean and east Ukrainian wars.

Had to love the Brit cool, understatement and sangfroid, so different from our Right Stuff boys

Comrade Misfit said...

Stewart, that was pretty much the case in 1982, when the Argentinian junta sought to distract the populace by starting a war.

It's an old technique, and one that some think Lincoln should have used to prevent the Civil War.

Old NFO said...

Hitting the boat for the first time is ALWAYS interesting... :-)

mikey said...

Yeah, the same can be said for Russia and China. The US (and to a much lesser extent, perhaps, the EU/NATO) is still the only truly global military power - the others dominate their regions but can't project power beyond them.

Which kind of leads to a strategic question - is there any inherent advantage to being a global military power in the 21st century. You get to fight in everybody's wars, but regional powers with smaller military budgets don't seem to be the worse for it...

CenterPuke88 said...

Stewart, the dysfunction within the Argentinian government is what will prevent them from acting. In 1982, a military government started the fight...they were certainly not dysfunctional, they were actually highly organized and realized they needed something to distract "the people". The problem with the current civil government is that they really don't have that option, unless a coup should happen.

3383 said...

A stitch in time saves nine, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound (sterling) of cure. A strong enough garrison would've prevented the Falklands War.
And prevented Argentina from showing it's ass on Top Gear.

Jib Halyard said...

No doubt the liberation of the Falklands would have happened even quicker than it did if the Phantoms and Buccaneers had still been flying. But I can't see the Argies being able to repeat their last criminal caper, even before the QEII becomes operational. (Actually the status quo works quite well for Beunos Aires -- they will always be a convenient source of demagoguery for any government that needs a distraction from the real issues.)

jon spencer said...

Was that a Fairey Gannet on the deck?

CenterPuke88 said...

Yes, indeed it is. At around 6 minutes and after, when they are looking at final from Flight Ops, the distinctive twin prop beak of the Gannet is just starboard of the angled deck markings (tight against the island) as they look sternward. For a check, you can see the z-fold wings over the top of the plump body of the plane.