Tornado to take over from Harrier in Afghanistan

Discussion in 'The Fleet Air Arm' started by WhizzbangDai, Jun 27, 2009.

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  1. So has all the buzz about Typhoon deployment finally died a death then? I know the govt denied there was any intention for it to happen last March, but the crabs kept going on about it whenever Typhoon was decried as a white elephant.
  2. Apparently the runway at Kandahar is too short for the typhoon, don't shoot me if i am wrong. also, what does this mean for the harriers? more sea time? or just mince about doing sfa at cott/witt?
  3. call me cynical, but it sounds like another step in the RAFs intention to shut down the FAAs jets. By deploying Tornado to Affie they can claim that there is no mission for Harrier and they should be scrapped.

    Political maneouvring by the most political of the 3 services.

  4. Surely the fact that the Tornados have only just been able to deploy is reason to keep the Harriers though?
  5. Don't knock it untill you try it!!!!
  6. silverfox

    silverfox War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    My light blue sources tell me that this is as much about justifying the continued existence of the GR4. As the F3 is already on the way out and Harrier can provide CAS, they need to find a use for the mudmover.

    The first planned out of area deployment for the Typhoon is going to be to the Falklands, although they are having snags with the comms - if the engineering databases in the UK and MPA don't talk and agree, then the aircraft is in danger of not being allowed to fly. Which would be a tad embarrassing.
  7. Redass,

    You’ll excuse a tad of frustration in my post, however for the last few years we’ve witnessed constant calls from the RN for the GR9s to be embark on CVS and demands for the GR4s to do more. Now the GR4s are deploying to HERRICK and it’s suddenly all part of my Service’s master plan for world domination?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FFS, we can’t win can we!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Interestingly, I seem to remember that when the GR7s were first deployed to HERRICK they weren’t committed to any ops at that time. Strangely however, there were no claims of Machiavellian plots from the RN at that time! :roll:

    A good mate of mine is a Harrier sqn boss and they’re really looking forward to refreshing some of the skills which have been on the wane in recent years. CVS ops and large package COMAO are foremost amongst those.

    As far as Typhoon goes, KAF is more than big enough for ops. However, numerous trg slots and support resources have been diverted to the Saudis so the stand up of 6 Sqn (and ergo subsequent Tiff units) has been delayed. In addition, the sudden demise of the F3 has meant that all Typhoons will be needed for UK QRA and the Falklands for the foreseeable future.

  8. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Perish the very thought. :lol:
  9. Plenty of GR9s on Illustrious at the moment, remind me when the Tornados are due to arrive in theatre?

    The timing couldn't be better could it. Carriers go over budget, RAF proves how pointles Harrier is whilst simultansously "proving" they can meet all the UKs jet needs with Tiffie and Tornado until Lightning II comes on line.

    I was chatting to an ex-army Colonel with VCDS's ear who confirmed the Army share the same suspicions about the RAF's weasling as we do.

    There's no smoke without fire as they say but like I stated in my first post perhaps I am just cynical abd I'll add paranoid too - time will tell but I'm fearing the worst for the RN in the next 12 months.
  10. Breaking News: Magic Mushroom drops ball on aviation matters (for once)

    Well, according to Air Force Monthly, anyway ;)

    Apparently the issue their having with sticking Typhoon in Afghan is more the fact they can't get the Paveway IV's precision munitions to 'talk' to the aircrafts computer, meaning they can't use this weapon, which is pretty much essential for Afghan ops. When they intergrated it into GR4 and GR7/9's they had no problems, yet Typhoon has thrown a hissy fit (SUCH a prima-donna) - blame the P1E software

    So what have you got to say to THAT y'damn crustacean? :p
  11. Err, they are in Theatre!

    Whilst I’m no expert on Typhoon software builds, I know plenty of Tiff mates and there have been some problems. That’s not especially unusual for a new type and certainly not for one which has a shed load more software code than any other we’ve had before (MRA4 has a even more!). Similarly, F-22 had the date line navigation reset problem whilst Gripen and V-22 had an annoying habit of departing from controlled flight.

    However, equally I would suggest that that is not what’s keeping Typhoon out of HERRICK. PW4 is an exceptional weapon, but it’s not essential for Afghanistan CAS otherwise we’d need it on our Reapers.

    That said, I've never claimed to know everything about military aviation so happy to be corrected.

    Rather, the demise of the F3 fleet is forcing Typhoon to be focused upon AD/QRA at a time when Russian out of area ops are at their highest since the Cold War and the Falklands F3s need to be withdrawn.

    So basically we have the following options:

    1. Deploy Typhoon to HERRICK. Request Lakenheath hold UK QRA. Request the Argies not to probe Falkland Islands.

    2. Maintain GR9 on HERRICK. Run out of engines prior to osd and continue to see CVS without a UK air wing at a time when the RN are keen to maintain associated skills such as Freddies and deck handling crews ticking over.

    3. Deploy GR4 to HERRICK.

    Come to think of it, perhaps I should start seeing an RN conspiracy! Just as the cost for CVF goes over budget, you engineer the GR9s being pulled out of ops so that they can be redeployed on CVS. Then you offer to augment HERRICK GR4s to prove the veracity of carrier air?!!! Crafty buggers!

    Let me be blunt. The constant ‘leaks’ and conspiracy dripping from the Senior Service would embarrass me were I to be in Andrew. You have the opportunity to have CVS bobbing around with UK Harriers routinely deployed again. Instead of whingeing, seize the opportunity, show some initiative and go and sell how useful carrier aviation is to the taxpayers!!!

    Finally, just to reiterate, a quick scan through my posts here and elsewhere will show I remain a supporter of CVF. My only (and increasing) concern is that the RN has prostituted its future on CVF/F-35 but will end up a poorly balanced force unable to defend the CVF let alone maintain a presence elsewhere. And yes, I get very frustrated at how poorly your Service sells itself and CVF!


  12. Unfortunately, I feel you have an excellent point. Taking savings to protect CVF has become a Navy reflex, such that we now wonder how the hell we're going to operate them when we get them. Especially because we got stitched up with cancelling T45 hulls 7 & 8 on the promise of an early FSC... we got the cuts but not the hulls, FSC having been slipped yet again.

    I also agree completely that we need to highlight far more the flexibility of a big carrier. Yes, you can fly lots of sexy pointy-nose fast-movers off it. Top Gun was soooo 1980s... But you can have a squadron of fast jets, plus a squadron or two of junglies, and maybe even some helicopter gunships, and suddenly you have a major forced-entry capability to get troops ashore and support them once there.

    There may be an element of envy involved; if we'd stuck with Horizon the Navy would have been stitched into a collaborative Europroject with twelve hulls delivered to the RN regardless of cost or performance, in the same way that "232 Typhoons" has been set in stone for well over a decade. By baling out of Horizon for T45 we tried for a better solution than the Europroject from Hell (almost as bad as TRIGAT...) and got royally stitched up for doing so.
  13. silverfox

    silverfox War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    I think you might be misisng the point here. The RN is deliberately not selling the CVF as a solely navy platform - the days of a single service requirement are numbered and the ability to deliver joint effect is the only way to try and attract money. This is what 1SL is all about. The fly in the ointment is the tit of a CAS - I know he is your tribal chief MM but his narrow focus on light blue first issues is very out dated and harks back to the worst of the inter service scrapping of the late 70's and 80's. The RAF senior leaders need to get over themselves and break out of what is an institutionalised, but totally unjustified, inferiority complex.

    If there is no CVF then there will be no JSF. No JSF and then where is the expeditionary air power? Harrier will go, Tornado will go neither will be replaced as the RAF have mortgaged their future to Typhoon (as we are with CVF) and then what will be left? A few squadrons of Typhoon for the air defence of the UK, waiting to fight a war that will never happen. And then the questions about the validity of an independant Air Force reallywill be asked.

    Bottom line - the delivery of joint effect relies upon a joint effort. The sooner Torpey gets this, the better.
  14. And the sooner the sideways walking fcukpigs get a grip and stop trying to squirm their way out of every ship det the better. We don't whinge about our part in the jointery you cnuts, putting up with your ultimate bullsh1t and constant manipulation of our dress, traditions and regs. So get onboard and crack on. And while you're at it how about spending one, JUST ONE night in the mess rather than in your pit [email protected] and eating pringles. And another thing, stop emailing home at every opportunity crying about how hard life is at sea, you fat gay tarts.

    [email protected]
  15. I didn’t suggest you were trying to sell it as a purely RN asset silverfox.

    My point is that you’re not really selling ‘It’ (and by ‘it’ I mean carrier air) at all but rather appear overly focused upon very specific aspects whilst neglecting others. Even your latest Aviate magazine has an artist’s impression of a cat/trap CVF!!! If you truly wish to project it as a Joint asset, where are the artists impressions of CVF with Chinooks, AH (and maybe even Islanders and Shadow), or of an ASTOR cabin strapped to the deck?

    I don’t feel that there is any inferiority complex silverfox. I do however feel that many independent air forces (RAF included) are image conscious given the attacks that they’ve undergone at various points in their history from naval and army staff.

    I would suggest that there is plenty of expeditionary Air Power available even without F-35 and CVF silverfox. Equally, it could be suggested that whilst CVS has been useful in recent conflicts, a carrier capability has not proved essential to UK military operations for over a generation during which land based assets have been to the fore. Yes the RAF has been very focused upon Typhoon and F-35 (far too much imho) just as you have been on CVF. The difference is, we have Typhoon which is already a very capable if immature asset in air-air and air-ground roles (just ask some FACs).

    Again, do not get me wrong, I really am a supporter of CVF and agree that without CVF F-35 is unlikely to be procured and vice versa. I’m largely playing devils advocate here to change what I perceive as a degree of inward looking and paranoia from the RN on the wider issues.

    I think we would be confident in winning that debate silverfox and I’ve yet to hear an argument for disbanding the RAF which doesn’t undermine itself from the outset. Rather, HMF probably need to be more aware of the threat to adopt a more sweeping Canadian style unified service.

  16. PMSL!!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Argies won't like that…
  18. Morning Monty!! :lol:

  19. IIRC, one of you top bods has said he could live with an all Typhoon force, seems people are already thinking beyond F-35 and it's probable demise.

    Meanwhile, on a more positive front, the Yanks are seeking money to stuff our ASaC gear into a V-22 Osprey - BIt of a bugger if the AWACS problem with CVF is fixed just as the planes drop off the budgetary radar.

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