The loss of HMS Sheffield

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by Fletch, Oct 4, 2006.

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  1. Hi,

    Thanks for that Fletch, that is a very interesting thread, one which I have bookmarked for future reference
  2. The latest is now on site and it DOESN'T look like good reading !!!

    The word WHITEWASH is being used and I tend to agree !!!!

    What does everyone think ?

    May I respectfully suggest that those of you involved or interested get closely behind George as I would assume that he will be quite bemused and annoyed by this let down.
  3. "Some details have been removed from the document, including what appear to be names of crew who did not perform adequately"

    and which AAWO would that be I wonder??
    would he checking could cover or drinking coffee??
  4. Just read that Board of enquiry report .

    It sneaks in the fact that we had no Air Early Warning devices.
    The demise of the fixed wing aircraft and too early for the AEW helo .

    Cruise missile detection un satisfactory etc etc.

    I think basically the blame is firmly stuck on the ship design and inadequate sensors/detectors etc.

    Crew performance is mentioned but more in the case of the training failures ------smoke inhalation and fire fighting in smoke filled compartments. Prior to 1982 it was a little thought about subject.
    Fire fighting gear failing etc etc

    They were lucky to just lose 20 ? guys.

    The decision regarding no Courts Martial required says it all .
  5. Just going on my experience as en ex-Killick stoker who only served on 23's -
    Costly errors occured - but the fleet learned from it i.e. the 23's.
    Good men died from a lack of knowledge/foresight/common sense - rules/operational procedure. OP's are written and instigated by people removed from the situation possibly ten or more years prior to an incident.

    I now work in the Oil Industry and have last been on the Tartan Platform that STILL fed the Piper Alpha Platform as it was going up in a plume of smoke and melting - spoke with guys who were there at the time, guess what?
    They were following procedure!

    SNAFU - we learn from it, do you think that any of the people involved in the loss of life on the Sheffied or the Piper sleep well at night?

    To continue to look for scapegoats, to me brings the honourable deaths of our colleagues into a lower place - they died doing what they wore the uniform for.

    To me, it's disrespectful to say they died due to a f ck up. They followed orders as any good Matelot would.

    Many will disagree with my comments; would you rather remember the men as casualties of war or as a casualty of a procedure that went wrong?

    As I've statred before:
    "Do you think that any of the people involved in the loss of life on the Sheffied sleep well at night?"

    I did serve with several members of Sheffields surviving ships company and have a good idea of what I am talking about: the guys I met would not look for a scapegoat, they would look for the truth and leave it at that.
  6. Nicely put.

    I have scanned through the linked thread and the one question that springs to my mind is: To what meaningful purpose?

    What good can come from this rather bitter contest to apportion blame? As you say; it belittles the sacrifice made. I tend to think that rather than a search for the truth, it is little more than an attempt to create a self gratifying conspiracy theory.
  7. silverfox

    silverfox War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    nicely put yourself.
    I was bemused byu the thread as I could'nt quite see what on earth they were getting excited about.

    Basic principle of war is that s**t does sometimes happen, in this case we werent trained properly, and what possible useful purpose can be served by all this.
  8. Its my belief that the Sheffiels, Coventry & other ships were lost for one reason. The lack of a conventional aircraft like the old Ark Royal.
    This would have provided gannets at high level transmitting radar information back to the ship(s). Phantom aricraft to intercept & destroy enemy aircraft & Buccaneer low level bombers capable of tossing a bomb with accuracy a distance of up to four miles without tne need to overfly the target. However the Conservative government had seen fit to dispose of the Ark in 1978.
    I still maintain that a conventional carrier combined with submarines would have prevented the loss of our ships save for the one that was hit by a truck mountd exocet.
  9. I think you will find that George doesn't want a Witch Hunt and, indeed, is supportive of all those aboard. It is the constant shortcomings of the MOD (N) and politicians in general at the time that need to be deeply scrutinised. In the same way that scrutiny is needed today in relation to Iraq and Afghanistan, to ensure our armed forces are NOT put in harm's way due SOLELY to the incompetence and self-engrandisement of our CIVILIAN elected representatives, who are only too willing to pass the "blame", if there is found to be BLAME, on to the "poor bloody infantry" rather than endanger their cosy, scummy, little lives of endemic corruption, lies and nose-in-the-trough "I'm alright Jack" complacency.
  10. While a tad too cynical for me, I take your point, but my reading of George's thread led me to that exact opposite conclusion: It is a witch hunt. In trying to uncover some dark conspiracy he gets frustrated by the ministry because he feels he's being stone-walled when actually there is no new inner truth to find.

    As regards his belief that people are withholding information - does he realise how difficult and time consuming it is to reply adequately to RFIs? Does he not realise that, with due respect to the dead, people have got more current and pressing issues to deal with?
  11. I totally agree with your post.
    I was involved with NBCD Trials and Evaluation as a Chief Stoker post Falklands and a lot of the lessons learnt during that time reflect the changes that the fleet have today in procedure, equipment and training. Before that most was based on WW2 experiences and I do believe Exocet missiles were not used during WW2. The continual shout's regarding cover up do not IMHO do anything positive Let's just hope the lessons learnt will not be put to the test for another 50+ years.
  12. You down the road from me at the Gas Works then matey ? I'm up the road at 50 Broadway will probably visit Committee Room 5 sometime tomorrow !!
  13. Fletch,

    We might meet... I'll be in Committee Room 3a from 1600. When will you be around?

    Incidentally I also forwarded the link to Mr. Hancock.

  14. I agree wholeheatedly that carrier borne air cover and AEW would have likely saved many lives, they would have been able to pretty much detect incoming as they left Argentina and been waiting for them. We cannot blame the Tories for the loss of the Ark 1978 as Labour were in power at that time up until 1979, it was also Labour that mothballed the replacement carrier project.
    To be honest, in many ways the Ark was on her last legs at that time but they should have kept her until the so called through deck cruisers arrived or arranged for AEW to operate off of Hermes.
    There were a lot of lessons that weren't learnt prior to the Falklands, everyone knew about the wiring on type 21s being PTFE and would give off toxic fumes during a fire and that the Aluminium ladders would melt in a fire trapping men below decks. There was wholesale disregard for the fact that these were warships and were expected to have major fires/damage from enemy action. Nothing absolutely nothing was done regarding issues such as those.
  15. Looks like I MAY be down to Cte. Rm. 5 tomorrow now as they have finished business for today in under 40 mins !!! Will probably get down there at around 10.00 Hrs. They normally put coffee and tea on for around 11.40 ish. so look out for a chap with glasses, chort hair and, probably, my Lostoppos Fleece with a White Ensign on it !!!

  16. I've just read your message. I'm going to miss seeing you Andy as I work adjacent to Portcullis House. The Palace is a 10 minute walk away. I'll be there this afternoon for a meeting.

    Some other time perhaps?


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