posted on Jun, 18 2005 @ 11:18 AM
Well, minbe was the first reply in this thread and it was quite heated too but I have to say Bulldog 52 (?) has the worst grip on the state of play
with the UK military since Duncan Sandys in 1957!
The Tornado, Typhoon, Nimrod, F-35 et al are just fine at what they do, the Typhoon is bested in A2A combat only by the Raptor, the Tornado, as far as
low level high speed bomb trucks go, is bested by nothing as it is faster and far more comfortable (ie less tiring for its crews) than any other
aircraft operating in that role. Criticism of an aircraft operating outside its design role (ie Tornado GR.4 at high altitude or Tornado F.3 in a
dogfight maybe) is ridiculous anyway.
My mega-whinge at the beginning of this thread relates more to how our air defence squadrons (only four of them but with more than 20 planes at least)
are overstretched, especially when you consider how part of even this meagre strength is postedf overseas on a regular basis, there should be no less
than 7 or 8 dedicated A2A squadrons in the RAF at any one time, the acceptance of the truth of this was why 74 squadron was reformed on 2nd hand
ex-USN F-4J Phantoms in the mid 80's (after the original plan to use Lighnings was shelved). Yet now we have only half the number of dedicated
fighters that effective UK coverage demands.
My rant about the Sea Harrier was directed solely at the fact that we have repeated the same mistake for what is now the third time, the removal of
indegenous fleet air defence capability. We did it in 1918 but WW2 taught us the error of that, we did it again in 1978 when the RN had to then wait
for its Sea Harriers and now we are making the navy go without ANY air defenbe capability AT ALL for maybe the next nine years. The RAF Harrier GR.9
force will be deployed at sea during this time but it has no BVR capability, indeed no A2A radar of any kind! Neither can it fire the AIM 120 missile
and if any Falklandesque situation arose today we would be well and truly shagged. It is this 'short term financial gain' mentality that winds me