The Ministry of Defence has produced a plan to decommission five warships from next April, which would reduce the Navy's capability to the level where it could carry out only "one small-scale operation".The truth is somewhere in between to the low side, I would guess. At least they have Gov'munt health care (sic).
Separate documentation from inside the department suggests that the total number of ships in the Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary could fall from the present level of 103 to 76 in 2017 and only 50 in 2027 — a reduction of more than half.
However, it also contained a commitment to buy two 65,000-ton aircraft carriers, at a cost of £4 billion — meaning savings had to be found elsewhere if the MoD were to meet its "operational commitments."
The email reads: "The Chief Sec directed that no further money from the CSR would be allocated to Defence and to maintain force levels the Dept must find the savings/cuts.
"For the RN [Royal Navy], the poor CSR deal and the commitment to 2 carriers is such that a proposal for the immediate decommissioning of 5 ships (frigates and destroyers) from April next year has been considered.
"This would reduce the RN's capabilities to just one small scale operation and that is it."
Sources said that under the plan the Navy, once the pride of the Armed Forces, would be unable to provide anything like the 1982 Falklands task force.
In what is likely to be a "worst-case" scenario, with no further commissioning of ships, total numbers of what the MoD terms "platforms" is slated to fall steadily from 103 to 50 within 20 years.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Well, while we are on the music theme; no one in Argentina is going to cry for you.