Whilst UK MOD dithers over T31e frigate contracts and HMG struggle to fund five the Japanese MOD and industry just gets on with it. In 2017 the Japanese Government decided to increase the tempo of its warship building programme to combat Chinese activity. Three years later the first 2 (of 22) new 5500 ton multi-purpose frigates are taking shape.
It is essential that the political classes, not just in Britain but across the West generally, realise that the balance of power is shifting worldwide. We do not live in the same world today as we did 20 years ago. At that time the United States Navy was as powerful as the next ten navies combined. Today, the Chinese Navy is numerically larger and China’s ambition is to supplant the US as the world’s predominant political, economic and military power. In 2003 the US and her allies were able to invade Iraq, following a long, uncontested, logistical deployment as if we were untouchable. Now the United Kingdom is within range of a myriad of Russian cruise and hypersonic missiles that could do to the UK what the US did, 20 years ago, to Iraq. The Indian Navy is equipped with an anti-ship missile better than anything the Royal Navy has. The air force of the United Arab Emirates has almost as many fast jets as the Royal Air Force. It is not only China and Russia that have grown stronger relative to the West, but numerous other countries have expanded their armed forces and the UK has, relatively speaking, diminished them. (more…)
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