Independant Nuclear Deterrent?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by Potential_Officer, Jul 17, 2007.

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  1. The Government plans to sell its stake in the Atomic Weapons Establishment, responsible for building the Trident warheads, and testing Trident safety, without firing warheads.
    The lead companies in line for winning the bid are America's Lockheed Martin, and Serco.

    So we will have an American Missile System, and potentially an American Company running the warhead production, do we really have an independant Nuclear Deterrent?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6901211.stm
     
  2. In answer to your question, YES
    America will independantly decide to use, target and launch said missiles with our without the agreement of others, or at least they will whilst GWB is at the healm :thumright:
     
  3. Inasmuch as we can use it independent of Washington, then yes.

    OTOH how dependent would we be on the US, very.....

    Both Lockheed and Serco are already involved in the site, so it would just be extending their investment.

    and the last line of the article is up to the usual BBC high standards ;) AWE does not ''operate'' the deterrent, they support it.
     
  4. My opinion is that with that much American Involvement on the system, the Americans have some leverage to make general use of the system (although something hopefully we will never have to see!) very difficult if it does not suit them. Would it not make sense for the UK Government to retain major possession of these exceptionally important assets? Why is there no British Company able to operate the base?

    And to be fair to the BBC, Karma, since when has any Civvy News Agency been able to correctly report on the Military?
     
  5. AWE has been GOCO for donkeys years now, there won't be any change on the ground really.

    AWE is a commerical organisation so it shouldn't matter too much.
     
  6. Frankly the transatlantic relationship has so many points of pressure, in both directions really, that the debate is fairly spurious anyway.

    Given that it's fundamental to the article then I'd expect them to be getting key details correct.
     
  7. As I have said before, the UK is the only country that possesses nuclear weapons that are not INDEPENDENT.

    Yes we have the physical ability to actually fire a Trident Missile but we do not have the independence to make that decision that is held very clearly by the USA. There is not a scenario in this world that any one on the forum could envisage where the UK would use a Trident missile and the USA were not also firing ballistic missiles. In that case they have so many and our contribution would not matter at all.

    Scrap the Bombers and fit cruise missiles with tactical nuclear warheads which we could use independently and build SSK's and SSN's to add to the three Astute Class in the pipe line.

    Nutty
     
  8. Why scrap the bombers? turn them into theme parks - make some money out of them!
     
  9. Nutty, me old mucker, please don't take this the wrong way. You're wrong.

    "...we do not have the independence to make that decision..."

    Unfortunately, being a serving Missile Mary Bomber Queen I can't tell you any more, but please believe me that we do. You're a nice guy, and you know all sorts about diesel boats and stuff - but nuclear weapon philosophy is probably not your strongest subject. We do have an independent nuclear deterrent. Honest.

    "There is not a scenario in this world that any one on the forum could envisage where the UK would use a Trident missile and the USA were not also firing ballistic missiles."
    True - however, the nuclear weapon doctrine for this country is fortunately not in the hands of RR members. It's not all about independent aggression - remember the Trident weapon system is a deterrent - we also have the independence to say 'no' to joining in with a multi-national nuclear strike if we want to...
     
  10. Within this nuclear weapon philosophy pray tell me why every country in the World except USA, UK, Russia, France, India, Pakistan, China and Israel see no need to possess a Nuclear Deterrent. This is assuming North Korea and Iran want it only for Blackmail or Revenge see no need for this form of protection.

    If our USA allies are popping off nuclear ballistic missiles then it makes little, in fact no difference if we say NO or YES to launching ours.

    If it is a weapon of deterrent pray tell who are we deterring, NOBODY

    The only reason it appears we keep them is most Senior Officers seem to like their toys and Politicians seem to think it makes them Grand people on the world stage with more Power than they would have with out them.

    Neither are reasons to keep Trident

    But as you said, "but nuclear weapon philosophy is probably not your strongest subject."

    Nor does it seem to be yours.

    NUtty
     

  11. It is the word INDEPENDENT which appears to confuse you, so lets look at Merriam-Webster's Dictionay as to what it means:

    I Quote them:
    1 : not dependent: as a (1) : not subject to control by others : SELF-GOVERNING (2) : not affiliated with a larger controlling unit <an independent bookstore> b (1) : not requiring or relying on something else : not contingent <an independent conclusion> (2) : not looking to others for one's opinions or for guidance in conduct (3) : not bound by or committed to a political party c (1) : not requiring or relying on others (as for care or livelihood) <independent of her parents> (2) : being enough to free one from the necessity of working for a living <a person of independent means> d : showing a desire for freedom <an independent manner> e (1) : not determined by or capable of being deduced or derived from or expressed in terms of members (as axioms or equations) of the set under consideration; especially : having linear independence <an independent set of vectors> (2) : having the property that the joint probability (as of events or samples) or the joint probability density function (as of random variables) equals the product of the probabilities or probability density functions of separate occurrence" Unquote

    Can't see where our Trident is Independent in that lot as you accept in your first post. So we pay, maintain man and run for a USA a Nuclear deterrent asset is that the philosphy

    Nutty
     
  12. Nutty, me old mucker, let's not fall out over this one. I do understand the word 'independent' as it applies to the weapon system in which I have been continuously employed since 1989, and I hope that you have the sense to realise that I cannot even suggest the mechanism of our independence. Sorry if I appear to be a little 'cloak and dagger', but that's the way it is.

    BTW, your suggestion of scrapping the Bombers and 'fit cruise missiles with tactical nuclear warheads which we could use independently' seems a little naive; unfortunately, once more, I can't elaborate. What would make a nuclear cruise missile more independent than the TII? Again, it's an American missile system with a nuclear warhead - what's the difference?
    Let's try to keep this debate sensible, shall we - I'm bored with arguing with uninformed fools such as Murgles.
    With respect to the font of all Diesel boat knowledge, (of which I have none, apart from Osiris alongside Dolphin very briefly),
    Yours Aye,
    [email protected]
     
  13. For what it's worth...
    http://www.reagan.utexas.edu/archives/speeches/1982/31182b.htm

    "If our USA allies are popping off nuclear ballistic missiles then it makes little, in fact no difference if we say NO or YES to launching ours.

    If it is a weapon of deterrent pray tell who are we deterring, NOBODY

    The only reason it appears we keep them is most Senior Officers seem to like their toys and Politicians seem to think it makes them Grand people on the world stage with more Power than they would have with out them."


    The thread's about independence Nutty. Whether we should have nuclear weapons or not, and whether cruise missile nukes are more palatable than ballistic missile nukes are both subjects for another day.
     
  14. http://www.acronym.org.uk/28clarke.htm
    Again, a few issues for anyone interested...
    I find the discussion on the viability of the 'sub-strategic' role of Trident interesting, in as much as it mentions possible scenarios in which Britain may act independently. Remember, this article was written by "Michael Clarke, Director of the Centre for Defence Studies (CDS), King's College, London."
    Now, although fairly well informed about the pointy-end of the weapon system as I am, I'm no expert on philosophy of its use (am I, Nutty?!)however, you have to take this man's opinions pretty seriously - if he says it's independent, then it's independent. End of.
    BTW, as pointed out much earlier, the fact that Aldermaston may be 'sold' to a US-owned company doesn't change a thing.
     
  15. I saw little in the article that was his opinion, just a reiteration of MOD Policy. I disagree with both MOD's idea of independence and deterrence if that is what Mr Clarke believes then it is his opinion.

    As for "End Of" much loved by the modern military and senior Police Officers when they do not wish to answer an awkward question.

    So I will "END OF" and go and play with my prized bucket of diesel.

    Nutty
     
  16. "As for "End Of" much loved by the modern military and senior Police Officers when they do not wish to answer an awkward question."

    ...thought that was 'Whatever...'

    Cheers Nutty, its nice debating with a grown-up for a change!
     
  17. Thats what I like about submariners so civilised in their arguments - now us skimmers would be chucking buckets of blood at each other and swearing like crazy, cos the other guys a numpty (notice it's always the other guy who's the numpty)!

    Now theres points for and points against this argument but if the bottom line is "we can if we want too" or we don't have too if we don't want too!" seems strained because if one starts chucking these buckets of Detergent around everybody will do it - no argument! so the thing is it's a dtergent until somebody chucks some! then it's fcuked! once used it no longer sweeps clean (so there's bugger all to keep clean but what's that got to do with it). so in actual fact non of it is independant, never was, never will be! it's all linked to each other! the only way it works is that as long as everybody has one and KNOWS HOW TO USE IT thers a chance he will so the damn thing won't get used! to see what happens if it does go back to line 8. :toilet: to use a famous quote "end of"! :tp:
     

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