Monday, February 17, 2020

1st active duty Russian soldier dies in Libya...

First the IMF and now APPLE warns about the business side of the Coronavirus...

Ok.  Now its happening.  Now shit is about to get real with regard to this virus.  Chinese citizens dying because their govt messed up?  No big deal to the media.  APPLE warning about earnings?  This should get their attention.

Death toll from coronavirus in China's Hubei province reaches 1,789

Yeah.  Call this tinfoil hat but I'm beginning to think this was a weapon that got loose.  Why the low death count?  First a virus like this that was targeted at say the US would (at a time of the attackers choice) cause critical damage...especially if it could be aimed at targets like bases or industry.

Next is the fact that viruses mutate.  That's what no one is talking about.  What if this thing goes Incredible Hulk?  Hubei is getting hammered but I don't think the rest of us should be resting easy yet.

Turkey is going all in on Idlib...deadline set...

This almost smacks of desperation.  What am I missing with this?  One thing is certain.  The Syrian Army has the terrorist on the run...the front is crumbling and this thing is teetering on the edge of turning into a rout.

Canada’s Medium Support Vehicle System (MSVS) Standard Military Pattern (SMP) programme

via Shepard Media.
Mack Defense has completed the final truck for Canada’s Medium Support Vehicle System (MSVS) Standard Military Pattern (SMP) programme.

This 1587th truck rolled off the assembly line in Saint Nicolas, Quebec, on 13 February.

Mack Defense, part of the Volvo Group, leveraged the group’s large industrial footprint and global capabilities to engineer and produce the MSVS SMP trucks. Before final production took place at a Prevost facility in Saint Nicolas, additional work was completed at facilities located in Bourg-en-Bresse, Marolles, Blainville and Limoges, France.

Canadian partners Dumur Industries, EODC, Marshall, Craig Manufacturing and Link Suspensions of Canada also contributed to the project.

Mack Defense received the contracts to deliver more than 1,500 8x8 MSVS SMP trucks, including variants such as cargo, material handling cranes, load handling systems and mobile repair trucks, in 2015.
I can understand mission specific gear but I have to wonder why Canada just doesn't glob onto what the Europe, Australia or the US Army and/or Marine Corps is doing when it comes to items like logistics vehicles.

Don't get me wrong.  I think this will be a fine vehicle and will meet their requirements.  My issue is the scale of the work.  Any of the above listed partners could lower the cost of this purchase. The entire Canadian Army is smaller than the USMC.  Piggybacking on someone's purchase would seem like a no brainer considering their size.

Lithuania's Vilkas IFV (pics)

ULTRAK Amphibious Fighting Vehicle.....concept art by Doug Didia

Note.  This is for a certain few that just love to poke holes, negative Nancy and basically shit on anything posted here.  This is CONCEPT ART.  Enjoy it. Don't slam it.  It's simply a flight of fancy and doesn't have to be practical or tactical.  Sometimes just being cool is enough.  That's the secret with CONCEPT ART.  It's art and art is to be enjoyed.

To the Artist.  Awesome work!  I enjoy your stuff and will be posting more (with credit to you of course!).  Keep doing what you do.

You can see his stuff here.

The Chinese President called for control over society in response to the Coronavirus..the result is 760 million people under lock down!

Simply amazing.

This situation deserves study.  For better or worse, EVERY govt will be faced with the prospect of having to shutdown a mega city within their borders.

The Chinese experience can be instructive.

If you doubt my thinking then consider what most Western forces are gearing up for.  Fighting in a mega city.  If it isn't for civil defense purposes then we should be studying this clusterfuck from hell for warfighting.

Interesting doesn't begin to describe the situation in China.

The Damen's OPV 1900 (Yarmook-class) for Pakistan's Navy will actually be a corvette.

This makes too much sense.  I've always been curious about the actual role and need for "Offshore Patrol Vessels" and always thought that Corvettes filled the same role only better because they actually have a combat capability.

What say you?

Former Royal Navy First Sea Lord calls ship numbers an embarrassment and disgrace...the RN is in trouble

via The
Former First Sea Lord Admiral Lord West dubbed the shortfall “a national embarrassment and disgrace”.

The peer had been repeatedly assured by defence ministers that the Type 31s would be delivered on time.

Lord West told The Sun: “Just 15 major service ships will put us into the second tier of the world’s navies
“Fifteen surface ships means only five on task, as a third will be in maintenance and a third will be training.

“For a great nation like ours, just five frigates on task is a national embarrassment and disgrace.”

The revelation will hike tensions further between the MoD and No10 ahead of this summer’s defence and security review, which forces chiefs already plan to use it to plea for more money.

Just 10 days ago at the Sun’s Millies awards, PM Boris Johnson boasted that the number of frigates in increasing.

Last Autumn, the MoD faced international embarrassment when it was unable to protect British flagged merchant ships from being hijacked by Iran in the Straits of Hormuz.
Story here. 

You think what I highlighted above isn't bad enough?  Then check out this tidbit from the same article.
In comparison, France has 22 frigates and destroyers, and even Italy has 17.

In a letter to the Commons Public Accounts Committee last month, MoD Permanent Secretary Stephen Lovegrove let slip that five new Type 31 frigates won’t now come into service until May 2027, four years late.

At the same time, the ageing generation of Type 23 frigates are still to be paid off from 2023, leaving the major shortfall.

The number of frigates is set to fall from 13 to nine by 2027, while the number of Type 45 destroyers remains at six.
Gonna be hard for the UK to keep up global commitments with such a small naval force.  By necessity they're gonna have to rely more on the Royal Air Force and maybe even the British Army to act as a deterrent.

Question.  Can the Royal Navy even float a credible carrier task force with such a small force?  If they can will that strip them of independent ship operations elsewhere?

It might be worthy of a giggle if our own Navy/Marine Corps wasn't headed down the same road.

With the exception of China (at least right now...still waiting to see how the Coronavirus affects them), everyone seems to be following the lead of the Germans.

Smaller and potentially less effective.

Open Comment Post. 17 Feb 2020.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

I think I found my new breakfast mix...with a French or Japanese flair

Everyone using Twitter for their own particular interests.  But if you're a foodie or just someone that likes to experiment at home (I've gotten to a point where for a VARIETY of reasons I just don't trust fast food restaurants unless I'm familiar with the people that work there or its recommended by people I trust) then the above Twitter page is for you.