back to article Major helicopter reorganisation for RAF and Navy

The Labour government has announced significant changes at the Ministry of Defence (MoD), whose effect will be to put more resources into the Afghan war while nonetheless cutting spending overall - largely by reductions to parts of the RAF not engaged in the fighting. However, there is also a major reshuffle of helicopters among …

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Think of the carbon footprint!

No, really! Is it worth it?

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Grenade

Yes, but...

... will these things actually fly then?

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Black Helicopters

wow

A lewis article with no ranting or bleating, must be the spirit of Christmas

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Not worth is

2013 we start to get the choppers, the "off the shelf ones" that Lewis wants so badly (and we could have right now, cheap!) to help in Afghanistan, when around 2013 we should be hopefully seeing a reduction in the armed forces being sent there.

So we're getting rid of the stuff that we may need in the future, for a war that's (hopefully) going to be wound down soon, leaving us with a bunch of choppers that we really won't need and no ability to fight proper wars because we're getting the choppers for political reasons which will end up being mothballed in, oh, I don't know, 2013?

Totally not worth it.

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Black Helicopters

Sail Army. Walk Sideways. Fly Navy!

That is all!!

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Anonymous Coward

ten new choppers....

but not for at least 2 years?

No quick end to the war in sight then?

Or are these going to replace the ten expected to wear out/get shot down in the interim.

If you need helicopters now, buy them now.

No way to fight a bloody war....

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Silver badge

Cock Up # XXXX

"The headlining move comes with the announcement, widely anticipated, that the British fleet of US-made Chinook heavy-lift helicopters is to increase from 48 to 70 aircraft, with initial deliveries of ten new choppers arriving by 2013." ....... And what of the four years in live war theatre before those initial deliveries, Lewis?

Do you imagine that Military Intelligence, with one of their XXXXStreamly Special Ops teams/Top Secret Depts. is working on Defence Systems to Render Politicians Redundant ...... for they do only appear to be worthless and expensive sugar candy/media fodder, buggering up the workings of the Civil Service. And just think of all the titbits they take away with themselves whenever they are on junkets to foreign lands gladhanding and horse trading with the competition and opposition as Puppets and Muppets on a Stage.

With the Computer and Communications Technology available today, let alone with what will be delivered in the Future, [ for there are some weird and wonderful developments about which you would know absolutely nothing] one can run worlds effortlessly from the comfort of one's favourite armchair, with even the simplest of Machines/a Global Operating Device plugged into the Information Grid/Internet. There is really no need for those third rate actors with crazy party lines to pimp, partying at great public expense and creating conflicts and wars and holding up progress to ensure that they are fed and watered and housed extravagantly for doing practically nothing, whilst touting their own indispensability and righteousness.

And as you can imagine, to approach Government for any necessary funding to cut out such Systemic Toxic Waste is always met with ........ well, an email unanswered and arrival denied and a document shredded and burned would be par for the course, definitely. :-)

Interesting days ahead.

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Nev
Bronze badge
Stop

All looked okay...

...up until that PFI bit at the end.

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Alert

Re: All looked ok...

Upto a point, but totally agree about the PFI bit at the end. The thought of the sort of fatcat gobblydyspeak fuckwits who seem to land all the major PFI contracts being let anywhere near the magnificent Air Sea Rescue service fills me with horror. If they can't even run a hospital (which is fixed to the ground, but given their profit above all ethos, probably not very well), god knows what they'll do to a squadron or two of helicopters. My heart sinks. If you want to see just how good ASR is, google 771 Squadron, and weep for the future.

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No no no no no no...

You don't understand. The private sector dose everything better than the public sector. The profitability and greater efficency has nothing to do with the fact that privet companys do what makes the most money rather than what is in the public interest, or the way they treat staff (to the letter rather than spirit of the law, and to minimum levels rather than best practice etc)

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Paris Hilton

More Helicopters..

because they are needed (for some time now) or because there is an election soon and this will win votes. Who could say? Paris would get my vote.

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Anonymous Coward

Ditch the RAF

Isn't it time ?

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Black Helicopters

um... wait a minute

"These short-term improvements will be paid for not by any budget increase, but by ... early retirement for much of the existing fleet of antique Nimrod MR2 maritime patrol aircraft."

Is this the same Nimrod fleet undergoing obscenely expensive upgrades? If so, then that's a good thing. If not, then it's just another government overspend blunder. Upgrading older airframes makes sense when nothing else can/will do the job. The USAF has a very good record of that with B-52 bombers and KC-135 tankers. However, SEVERAL options exist to replace the Nimrods.

For the helicopter program (sorry, programme), the consolidation sounds like a smart move. Say what you will about the Chinook, but you have to admit that it gets the job done. Bonus: I hear the newer models are a lot safer/more comfortable than the rattletraps I rode in the 80's. Never rode in one, but heard the Lynx was quite capable as well - albeit for "smaller" jobs.

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Alert

Several options being?

The nimrod is still the best maritime patrol aircraft in the world.

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Grenade

Nimrod might well "be the best maritime recon" ..

..but it is not how it is being used and it still has real PROBLEMS. So you fly it if you want to, the rest of us won't bother.

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Unhappy

Don't forget the boats

Also withdrawn are two active service Naval vessels - that will take the Royal Navy down to 25 vessels (excluding auxiliaries)?

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N2

Wow!

I diddnt know we had 25 submarines!

Boat = submarine

Ship = target

:-)

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Pint

Out with the Army, Navy and Air Force!

Other countries have more smarts than the War Office/DOD/whatever as they scrapped the quaint appellations of Army, Navy and Air Force and replaced them with the more appropriate name ARMED FORCES.

There is so much that each service does of the others it only makes sense that they become one.

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What about the war ?

The wording of the announcement is an admission that UK forces will be committed in Afghanistan for four years more at least, we are losing now and things will be the same when the whirlies get there. If progress were expected in the meantime then there would be no need for this kit.

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Thumb Down

Rainforest?

It's a jungle - get over it

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More please.

Let's scale back to just enough integrated armed forces to defend our little group of islands.

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Boffin

@SlabMan

"Let's scale back to just enough integrated armed forces to defend our little group of islands."

Perhaps you would like to define that please? Enough to defend ourselves successfully against say the USA or Russia or China would be slightly different to that required for a token defence against say The Maldives, or the Vatican City.

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Dead Vulture

So Vietghanistan it is then

This is tactical warfare ........

".. whose effect will be to put more resources into the Afghan war ..."

"... with initial deliveries of ten new choppers arriving by 2013 ..."

".. will be extremely welcome among British forces there .."

They just have to wait 3 years, while the wouldbeworldrulers/oilthieves either, try to NOT lose the war or NOT bring it to a conclusion in that time frame. Thinking of maintaining the job numbers and continued sustainable development I suppose !

ALF

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Grenade

Here is a puzzle

So the Navy are to take Merlin. So they all move to Culdrose? I don't think so; there is no room. So the Navy move into RAF Benson, which is busy refurbishing the Puma again which should have retired in 2010. Ho Ho. Jolly Father Christmas jape getting a quart into a pint pot.

Sounds like there is going to be a lot of put and take before this is settled.

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