Monday, 14 May 2012

And the problem is...?

Ares headline:
U.K.'s F-35B Decision a Blow to Franco-British Defense Cooperation
All I can say is,



eon said...


Libyan government declares another "Line of Death" across the Gulf of Sidra. Libyan Rafale' C's take off from Tripoli to enforce it on a Royal Navy task group enroute to Gibraltar after a courtesy call at Haifa. Rafales armed with ASMs.

FAA F-35B's blow Rafales away in WVR dogfight due to better pilots, better weapons, and the F-35B's superior maneuverability in a furball.

France hardest hit. (As export orders for Rafales suffer a significant drop.)

The French-British "cooperation" was less about mututual defense than it was about sellin Rafale'. And Rafale was mainly a hastily-designed effort to take export sales away from EFA aka Typhoon.

All of which is academic, as Rafale and typhoon both took so long to reach IOC that they are already obsolete. As opposed to F-22 and F-35, which are merely obsolescent.

No, this is fantasy. The present and forseeable governments at No. 10 would never consider letting a Royal Navy task group... make a courtesy call at Haifa.



Sergej said...

To say nothing of your assumption that there will still be a Froggie-Land in 2025. No, eon, I'm afraid that your science fiction isn't as good as say, Larry Niven's or Jack Vance's.

Anonymous said...

But this also ties the Fleet Air Arm and the carrier to a single aircraft type. "Cats and Traps" allows a much wider range of aircraft e.g. AWACS like the Hawkeye, F18's if the F35 is delayed or even cut. Crabair are going to continue to ensure that the carriers are emasculated and provided with inferior aircraft (just like WW2).

eon said...


I don't think you can really say FAA was "inferior" during the war. Granted, they started with the Swordfish (aka "the Stringbag")
flying off Ark Royal, which still worked well enough to cripple Bismarck. But by the time the Pacific campaign was rolling, the Colossus-class "large light" carriers were in the water, and they were flying first Wildcats, and then Corsairs, Hellcats, and SBDs off them, just like the U.S. Navy.

The carrier design that's being built around the F-35 doesn't have that (expletive deleted) ski-jump bow, and can easily handle Hornets if the F-35 doesn't come through. I suspect in the end there may be a mix, with '35s being assigned to missions where their low RCS and high ACM are needed, like SEAD, and the Super Bugs doing more "down-to-Earth" jobs, like mud-moving, where their heavier (external) ordnance loads count.

In fact, that wouldn't be a bad mix for the USN, either.