Thursday, 29 June 2017

The Type 26 vs the Type 31

This week the Royal Navy proudly heralded the first sailing of its latest warship, the impressive Queen Elizabeth class carrier. And yet as this promising new era in the Royal Navy's history begins, the questions are already starting to turn to the future of the ships that will escort her onto the high seas, as well as carrying out the sundry other security and assurance tasks demanded of the Royal Navy by the government. 

The next ship in line for construction is the Type 26 frigate, designed primarily for anti-submarine warfare but also slated to be able to carry weapons like the Tomahawk Land Attack Missile (TLAM). I don't think anyone would argue against the need for Type 26. Rather the question is how many, and if the answer to that question is only 8 then what is going to fill the gap to keep frigate numbers at 13, which would represent a like for like replacement of the outgoing Type 23s?

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Why so negative?

One of these days I'll actually get back to writing about defence. Ah, those happy times! But for now I want to talk about that tired, worn, endlessly repeated subject that appears to dominate the daily headlines, the conversations by the water cooler, the conversations down the pub, the conversations with the family, and just about every conversation two or more people seem to have in the UK today. 

I may be exaggerating the impact of the subject on modern conversation slightly, but it does seem like a day cannot pass without someone talking about it, so I intend to basically stuff out some of my current thoughts on the subject for you to read/ignore at your leisure and be done with it for the next few months at least, while I instead go back to talking about ships and planes and things that get blown up or blow other things up.

The subject in question is of course brexit, which dominated the Queens speech.

Friday, 16 June 2017

The life of a centrist

With all this talk of the election and manifestos, Brexit and dementia taxes, young vs old, poor vs rich, it's easy to lose a sense of where people stand on the political spectrum. I noticed this in a discussion I had the other day with friends about the result. By the end of it I realised I must have sounded like somewhat of a Theresa May supporter, which is about a million miles (some political hyperbole might have been injected there for effect) from my actual opinion of that "bloody difficult woman" (bloody incompetent perhaps?). It is merely a testament to just how much I disagree with Corbyn and his bonkers plans that I ended up virtually defending May, though not quite.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

My thoughts on the election

I've just been out running through the wheat fields to boost my street cred, so this whole election thing then. Who won?

The DUP I guess. It certainly wasn't Theresa May, who lost her commons majority. It wasn't Labour, who gained some seats but still failed to earn a majority, or even enough to form a coalition. Not that you'd get that impression listening to Labour supporters today. They're celebrating coming up 46 seats short of the Conservatives like England has just won the world cup, such is the dire state of Labour right now and the level of pessimism that surrounded Jeremy Corbyn.