PDA

View Full Version : UK-France agree to develop joint independent nuclear capabiity



David Guyatt
11-02-2010, 11:49 AM
Goodness gracious me. The old enemies become new best friends.

The Pentagon will almost certainly be mobilizing to stop this. Liam Fox had better watch his back rather carefully, I think.

Currently, the UK possesses its own nuclear capability thanks entirely to the US. But "possession" is the key word here. The UK cannot launch even one warhead without US consent as launch keys are under complete US control -- not very independent on might argue.

This agreement will break that 50-year US strangle-hold.

Looks like the British Poodle is getting a classic French make-over.

What next? A joint Franco-British intelligence agreement maybe?


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11666320


2 November 2010 Last updated at 00:49

Will new Franco-British co-operation on defence lead to an EU army?
By Paul Reynolds
World affairs correspondent, BBC News website

Has defence co-operation between London and Paris ever been closer?
Britain and France are being forced by budget cut-backs and the lack of their own strategic capability to co-operate more closely on defence.

They both want to be global players but increasingly lack the resources to remain so.

A series of measures is being formally agreed at a summit in London on Tuesday between Prime Minister David Cameron and President Nicolas Sarkozy.

The Chief of the British Defence Staff General Sir David Richards has said they will develop an "expeditionary joint force" in which there will be cooperation at brigade level "but not within the same brigade".

This will not be a standing force but will involve designating forces to take part in any joint operation. It will be at brigade level. That is about 5,000 troops from each partner depending on the operation.

A lot of this is on the technical side because that is where cash can be saved. One new idea is to pool resources on the testing of nuclear warheads by technical means.

Technology for this will be developed in Britain and testing will be done in France. The ability to test warheads this way is vital given the bans on explosive testing. Each side will keep control of its own warheads.

They will share air-to-air refuelling because Britain might have spare capacity in this in the future. There is scope for joint maintenance work on transport aircraft, and shared development of a drone, mine-counter measures, satellite communications and cyber warfare.

Interoperability problems

There is a plan to allow each other's aircraft to use each other's carriers and to try to ensure that one partner always has a carrier at sea. This is an example of how money is driving this change.



This is not a push for an EU army which we oppose.”Liam Fox
UK Defence Secretary

Originally Britain wanted the short take-off and landing version of the new Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) for its planned new carriers. Now, however, it has to cut back. So a cheaper catapult-assisted JSF version is being chosen and the philosophy of interoperability has been developed to help justify this.

How some of this will work in practice also remains to be seen. Interoperability on carriers requires both countries to be committed to the same conflict for it to have any major practical use.

French Defence Minister Herve Morin has already indicated that partners would "disengage" in "a conflict where our respective interests diverge". This is also how the concept is seen in London. Each side will have a veto on a deployment it does not want.

It is being stressed on the British side that all this is being done outside the European Union and is not designed to undermine Nato.

'No EU army'

British Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox said: "This is not a push for an EU army which we oppose... It has always been my view that defence must be a sovereign and therefore an inter-governmental issue."

Britain is therefore not taking advantage of the mechanism offered by the Lisbon Treaty. The treaty allows for what is called "permanent structured cooperation in defence".

This is in effect an EU "opt-in" arrangement. It allows member states to get approval from the European Council (the heads of state and government) to organise combat units capable of operating on missions up to at least 120 days.

Such EU-led cooperation was envisaged in 1998 when Tony Blair and President Chirac agreed at St Malo that "The [European] Union must have the capacity for autonomous action, backed up by credible military forces".

That has not happened. Instead, France has re-joined the military structures of Nato and, although the French would probably have wanted to go down the EU route this time, Britain is saying no and France is saying OK.

The question remains, though, as to whether in time this creeping co-operation might not lead to the "progressive framing of a common Union defence policy" agreed to in the Lisbon Treaty.

In the meantime Dr Fox declares that the new Franco-British defence relationship will be "the closest it has ever been".

'Conversations'

This is debatable. It might be true in the sense of sharing facilities but hardly true in the sense of sharing commitments. Just think back to the First World War, when Marshal Foch ended up by commanding all French and British armies and a respectful Britain put up a statue of him outside Victoria Station.

And before that there was a secret military arrangement, simply called "conversations", which shows how what starts out as a theoretical contingency plan can develop into a major commitment.

The British cabinet as a whole was not told but the military staffs were given permission to develop plans under which Britain would come to France's help in the event of a German attack.

The talks were formalised in 1912 in an agreement to divide naval forces - if there was a war and if Britain joined in, Britain would take care of the Channel and France the Mediterranean.

Even though the British government kept on stressing that the plans did not commit it to a war in support of France, the practical and moral basis was being developed upon which Britain did commit itself to France and to a war with Germany.

Paul.Reynolds-INTERNET@bbc.co.uk

Magda Hassan
11-02-2010, 11:56 AM
Yep. I think Liam Fox has been causing people on both sides of the Atlantic to have some restless nights.

There is something sort of tragic/comic about these old colonial tarts and rivals having to shack up together to keep up their delusions of grandeur :fight::flute: :hahaha:

Peter Lemkin
11-02-2010, 03:40 PM
Goodness gracious me. The old enemies become new best friends.

The Pentagon will almost certainly be mobilizing to stop this. Liam Fox had better watch his back rather carefully, I think.

Currently, the UK possesses its own nuclear capability thanks entirely to the US. But "possession" is the key word here. The UK cannot launch even one warhead without US consent as launch keys are under complete US control -- not very independent on might argue.

This agreement will break that 50-year US strangle-hold.

Looks like the British Poodle is getting a classic French make-over.

What next? A joint Franco-British intelligence agreement maybe?


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11666320


2 November 2010 Last updated at 00:49

Will new Franco-British co-operation on defence lead to an EU army?
By Paul Reynolds
World affairs correspondent, BBC News website

Has defence co-operation between London and Paris ever been closer?
Britain and France are being forced by budget cut-backs and the lack of their own strategic capability to co-operate more closely on defence.

They both want to be global players but increasingly lack the resources to remain so.

A series of measures is being formally agreed at a summit in London on Tuesday between Prime Minister David Cameron and President Nicolas Sarkozy.

The Chief of the British Defence Staff General Sir David Richards has said they will develop an "expeditionary joint force" in which there will be cooperation at brigade level "but not within the same brigade".

This will not be a standing force but will involve designating forces to take part in any joint operation. It will be at brigade level. That is about 5,000 troops from each partner depending on the operation.

A lot of this is on the technical side because that is where cash can be saved. One new idea is to pool resources on the testing of nuclear warheads by technical means.

Technology for this will be developed in Britain and testing will be done in France. The ability to test warheads this way is vital given the bans on explosive testing. Each side will keep control of its own warheads.

They will share air-to-air refuelling because Britain might have spare capacity in this in the future. There is scope for joint maintenance work on transport aircraft, and shared development of a drone, mine-counter measures, satellite communications and cyber warfare.

Interoperability problems

There is a plan to allow each other's aircraft to use each other's carriers and to try to ensure that one partner always has a carrier at sea. This is an example of how money is driving this change.



This is not a push for an EU army which we oppose.”Liam Fox
UK Defence Secretary

Originally Britain wanted the short take-off and landing version of the new Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) for its planned new carriers. Now, however, it has to cut back. So a cheaper catapult-assisted JSF version is being chosen and the philosophy of interoperability has been developed to help justify this.

How some of this will work in practice also remains to be seen. Interoperability on carriers requires both countries to be committed to the same conflict for it to have any major practical use.

French Defence Minister Herve Morin has already indicated that partners would "disengage" in "a conflict where our respective interests diverge". This is also how the concept is seen in London. Each side will have a veto on a deployment it does not want.

It is being stressed on the British side that all this is being done outside the European Union and is not designed to undermine Nato.

'No EU army'

British Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox said: "This is not a push for an EU army which we oppose... It has always been my view that defence must be a sovereign and therefore an inter-governmental issue."

Britain is therefore not taking advantage of the mechanism offered by the Lisbon Treaty. The treaty allows for what is called "permanent structured cooperation in defence".

This is in effect an EU "opt-in" arrangement. It allows member states to get approval from the European Council (the heads of state and government) to organise combat units capable of operating on missions up to at least 120 days.

Such EU-led cooperation was envisaged in 1998 when Tony Blair and President Chirac agreed at St Malo that "The [European] Union must have the capacity for autonomous action, backed up by credible military forces".

That has not happened. Instead, France has re-joined the military structures of Nato and, although the French would probably have wanted to go down the EU route this time, Britain is saying no and France is saying OK.

The question remains, though, as to whether in time this creeping co-operation might not lead to the "progressive framing of a common Union defence policy" agreed to in the Lisbon Treaty.

In the meantime Dr Fox declares that the new Franco-British defence relationship will be "the closest it has ever been".

'Conversations'

This is debatable. It might be true in the sense of sharing facilities but hardly true in the sense of sharing commitments. Just think back to the First World War, when Marshal Foch ended up by commanding all French and British armies and a respectful Britain put up a statue of him outside Victoria Station.

And before that there was a secret military arrangement, simply called "conversations", which shows how what starts out as a theoretical contingency plan can develop into a major commitment.

The British cabinet as a whole was not told but the military staffs were given permission to develop plans under which Britain would come to France's help in the event of a German attack.

The talks were formalised in 1912 in an agreement to divide naval forces - if there was a war and if Britain joined in, Britain would take care of the Channel and France the Mediterranean.

Even though the British government kept on stressing that the plans did not commit it to a war in support of France, the practical and moral basis was being developed upon which Britain did commit itself to France and to a war with Germany.

Paul.Reynolds-INTERNET@bbc.co.uk

David, is that true....I thought I knew everything...:hello:...and this is new to me:smokin:that the UK launch codes are under US control?!?!?!? WOW...not only a Poodle, but a 'fixed' one, at that!.....yes, if this goes forward, the USA will shite in its pants....could make quite a mess inside the beltway!

David Guyatt
11-02-2010, 06:17 PM
Yep Pete, 'fraid so, it's true.

The new double treaty signed today lasts for 50 years. For me it signals the death bell of the so called "special relationship" from the British point of view (its been dead from the Washington end for God knows how long), and really is historic. I'm not sure it will play out as envisioned, but I'm really surprised by it.

Ed Jewett
11-02-2010, 06:36 PM
Bloody merde?

Well, from way over here on the other side of the pond lo these many generations later, I can only point out my English ancestral roots (through a Norman knight named Henri du Juwatt from the lineage of some chap or gentilhomme or bloke who served in the court of Charlemagne) and utter the phrase under the family coat of arms: toujours la meme.

This calls for a glass of something... mingled something-or-other... warm beer and cold champagne ... fish and les pommes frites... a Lotus 2CV ... and let's strike up a round of Rule Marseillaise,, or is God Save the Dauphin?

Ed Jewett
11-02-2010, 09:01 PM
M. Cameron, serait-il possible pour nous d'emprunter les clés de votre porte-avion la semaine prochaine? La mafia russe est entreprise débarquement sur la plage près de Nice et nous avons besoin de la couverture aérienne.

Magda Hassan
11-03-2010, 01:48 AM
More like a guard of honor :bandit:

Another handy thing for the Anglo-French elite will be the use of extra forces to put down those pesky strikers who are appearing due to the cuts to services that will be needed to fund and arm this new 'special friendship'. Yes, the people of France and Britain have both been clamoring for an Anglo Franco expansion of nuclear energy and an arms build up. No. I didn't hear them saying that either.

Argentina better be watching because next time they pull that stunt with the Falklands France will be coming along too with nuclear arms.

David Guyatt
11-03-2010, 09:14 AM
This calls for a glass of something... mingled something-or-other... warm beer and cold champagne ... fish and les pommes frites... a Lotus 2CV ... and let's strike up a round of Rule Marseillaise,, or is God Save the Dauphin?

As one who also has Frog roots, I'd drink to God save the Dauphin - except the revolting French of 1789 had his head off.

naughty, naughty, naughty...