British Military cannot defend country: Report

British Military cannot defend country: Report

LONDON: There are serious gaping holes in a number of areas that appear to leave the country’s defences vulnerable, according to findings in a foreign media.

Problems that have been uncovered include warships that are so noisy they can be heard 100 miles away by Russian submarines, drones costing a total of £1 billion that are still not in frontline service despite being ordered 12 years ago and light tanks that are too big to fit into transport aircraft.

Other embarrassing revelations include equipment failures and mismanaged procurement deals. The army’s Ajax light armoured vehicles, which are being bought for a total of £3.5billion, are too big to fit into the RAF’s main transport aircraft, the A400m without being partially dismantled.

The army’s 54 Watchkeeper reconnaissance drones, costing £1.2billion, are still not in full service due to several technical glitches despite being ordered 12 years ago. New maritime spy planes, bought by the RAF in a £3billion deal, “cannot execute the full range of mission tasks” and are vulnerable to cyber-attack, according to US defence reports.

The navy’s Type 45 destroyers, costing £1billion each, can be detected by submarines as far away as 100 miles as they rattle like a “box of spanners” underwater, according to the former Ministry of Defence (MoD) Director of Operational Capability Rear Admiral Chris Parry.

The number of Type 26 frigates on order for the navy have had to be cut from 13 to eight due to some military experts saying the deal had been “gold plated” by insisting that Chinook helicopters should be able to land on its deck for SAS raids.

The decision is said to have caused delays and the sent the cost ballooning The UK’s fleet of six Type 45 destroyers have also be beset by engine problems which are so severe they have caused them to shut down completely in warm waters.

Each one is having new diesel generators fitted which will take nine years to complete, according to the paper. Rear Admiral Parry, who once commanded HMS Gloucester, a Type 42 destroyer, said that the Type 45s were “noisy as hell” under water, which made them easily detectable by Russian submarines at long range.

He said the MoD had ploughed money into the warship's sophisticated anti-aircraft and anti-missile system "without thinking about the anti-submarine element". He believes that the navy had mistakenly overlooked suppressing the noise of its destroyers after the Cold War had ended because the threat from Russian submarines had diminished.

He said: ”We used to put little wooden wedges between the hatchclips and the hatches in my destroyer to stop them rattling so we could keep the Continued noise down. "We have forgotten all about it — it's crazy.

Noise suppression has been probably the biggest dirty secret since the end of the Cold War that people have been cheerfully ignoring." In response the MoD stated that as it was an air defence warship, stealth was not a “premium requirement” for the Type 45.