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Derk

Dutch defence cuts

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Well, seems like (what we call) "the bullet is through the church" , i.e. the axe has fallen: 12000 jobs will disappear (meaning 6000 forced redundancies), another 19 F16 MLU's wille be sold (leaving us with just 68 of them), same for 17 Cougars and a DC10, all 68 Leopard2A6's of the Army (leaving us without tanks, we had about 900 at the end of the Cold War....), some frigates and minehunters and a supplyship of the Navy.............

But (to my astonishment) Leeuwarden Airbase will be kept open, all Apaches will remain in service, all CH 47F Chinooks (new and refurbished CH 47 D's) will be delivered, 2nd test F35 will be bought, all NH 90's will be deliverd, all 4 submarines will remain in service (!)...

These are the cabinet's plans, let's wait and see what is going to happen, lots of details still have to be filled in.... (remember, they are politicians......)

A devastating blow at any rate......

 

Derk

Edited by Derk

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Governments only learn the lessons of the last wars fought. This wouldn't be so bad if the next operation resembles the last one exactly, but they never do. Focusing on airlift and air support seems to be all the rage along with buying into stealth. I'm finding too many governments are relying on stealth to be some kind of panacea for all things military and are going to have a big shock when they realise their new (Euro) $150 million stealth planes aren't able to fight terrorism or keep the peace any better, or cheaper than existing aircraft...

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An Army without Tanks? are you not buying some newer ones instead?

 

Nope, they say the Apaches could do the job (!)............. Saves E 90 million per year. Andt hey are withdrawing 12 PzH 2000 armoured howitzers as well as a battery of Patriots too. De Kooy naval air station near Den Helder on the list as well, decreasing activities on Eindhoven AB (main transport bas), but these two have civilian users too, so will be open for use if necessary. Don't think the withdrawal of 4 out of 10 minehunters is a very good idea either..

It is not clear at all yet which installations / complexes will be closed. Very tricky item because of local employment....

Result is that the personnel will be unsure about their jobs for a very long time (including generals this time....)

 

Houdoe,

 

Derk

Edited by Derk

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An Army without Tanks? are you not buying some newer ones instead?

 

Newer than the LEO2A6? there is nothing better, really. The worst part is the estructural loss of capabilities. When you disband all the types of units in your armed forces, you need to start from 0 if you want to recover it. Training, estructure, Etc. Tanks for the Dutch Army, Aircraft Carriers for the British Navy, etc. Those cuts in capabilities are a serious bite in the power of those armed forces. It is not as troublesome to get rid of many units of whatever, as getting rid of the last of this type. It has taken a serious investment to establish those, and it will take much more money to reestablish it eventually.

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The Leo2A7 is more modern then the A6 or the swedish version of the Leo2. But i agree with you, the loss of technic is not as important as the loss of know how of the soldiers. To built or buy a new tank is fast and simple, but to train a competent crew is very timeconsuming. If you cut down the tank forces, then at least one battalion should kept left, to have a unit which can be used as reservoir for the emergency case that you must increase the panzer troops fast.

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Interestingly the UK Tank commander at the start of Gulf War 1 is on record as saying the tanks days are numbered and that if it had been up to him he would have got rid of them in our recent defence review and kept other things.

I believe the thinking is that against any decent opposition the tank is vulnerable to air attack and against a lower end opponent the tank is unnecessary. Similarly if you're going up against someone with tanks you use air power to take them out.

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The man portable anti tank missiles must be something these days as well plus they were not that armoured underneath against IEDs as I understand.

 

I assume they have made improvements in that area? - I also remember seeing a video of a defensive system on a tank that (I think) detected an incoming projectile and sent out an EM pulse that set off the warhead - so all that was left was the kinetic energy of the projectile - forget what it was called now.

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