Abbott & Johnson drowning in sub fiasco

 

Robert Bond   Director   Citizens for Defence

 www.citizensfordefence.org      Citizens for Defence (BondBobby) on Twitter

Future Sub calls the NRMA

                                      Future Sub calls the NRMA

CITIZENS FOR DEFENCE

Abbott & Johnson drowning in sub fiasco

Bobby Bond SharpenedThe submarine Australia hopes to acquire in the next decade is more and more turning into a tangled mess where Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Defence Minister Senator Johnston are way out of their depth. These politicians are dogmatically standing by outdated concepts such as diesel electric propulsion that will ultimately lead to another 50 years of virtually nonexistent undersea defence for a nation that has vast oceans and seas surrounding it.

Britain and the US only use nuclear powered submarines and doesn’t this tell our flat earth politicians something. They are not interested in wasting everyone’s time by designing a last century relic that will have to hide in the shallows if a nuclear attack submarine is anywhere within a thousand miles of it in a conflict.

Have our politicians even approached the US or Britain about the supply of nuclear propulsion units or submarines? The US supplied Britain propulsion units for their first nuclear submarines. Why aren’t any deals put up to the US or Britain made public so that we taxpayers and concerned citizens can judge how wisely our defence dollar is being spent?

Senator Johnston

Senator Johnston

Sure, the US and Britain are concerned about their secret technology, and understandably so, but why don’t our politicians put it to them and see where the boundaries are. Just as an outside observer and based on what the US ambassador to Australia has said several times in the past and what US think tanks and analysts are saying the US would be amenable to us purchasing 10 Virginia class submarines to assist US forces in this area of the Indo-Pacific.  As an encouragement to the US we could extensively upgrade HMAS Sterling in Western Australia as a joint facility for Australian and US ships. Have any of these proposals been discussed and if so why are they being kept secret?

As English speaking allies and mother countries they are the only nations Australia should be seeking help from and we should accept their designs and technology where it can be obtained. These subs will be defending this nation for 50 years and we will depend on our allies for spare parts accident damage repair and technological upgrades. We can rely on these two nations to be always there for us.

Not so Germany, Sweden, Japan, France or most other countries in the world. They are breaking their necks to design and build Australia 100 year old technology subs designed for the Mediterranean or Baltic Sea which virtually can fit into the Queensland Gulf of Carpentaria. The Japanese submarine is built exclusively for the East China Sea and the Sea of Japan which are just oversized ponds. Yet Australia has the vast Pacific Ocean, the vast Indian Ocean, the Timor Sea and China Seas not to mention the Great Southern Ocean to patrol.

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine underway

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine underway

The Swiss, French, Japanese and Germans have never recently built a submarine suitable for such a task and yet Australia seems to be going to let them design and build an unproven dinosaur with no guarantees that it will adequately defend our nation and no guarantees that we will be able to acquire parts and follow up assistance to keep the subs operational. Indeed Sweden caused Australian soldiers to die in Vietnam when it denied us ammunition for their antitank weapons in the Vietnam War because they were morally opposed to us fighting the communists.

The politician’s brainless consideration of completely new designed diesel electric museum piece submarines with the assistance of Germany, France, Sweden, or Japan is going to kill countless Australian submariners as they pit their obsolete submarines against nimble high technology nuclear attack submarines in the decades ahead.

Mr Abbott and Mr Johnston, level with the Australian people and tell us why you cannot make a rational decision on nuclear submarines for the defence of our nation.

Nuclear subs the only defence

 

Robert Bond   Director   Citizens for Defence

 www.citizensfordefence.org      Citizens for Defence (BondBobby) on Twitter

CITIZENS FOR DEFENCE

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine underway

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine underway

Nuclear subs the only defence

Bobby Bond SharpenedASPI is hosting an international conference on Submarine Choice to help determine the next submarine Australia buys. This is the latest agonising self examination of a problem that should have been decided in 2009.

If our politicians had any concern for Australian security they would have ordered Virginia-class nuclear powered submarines from the US then and we would be very close to having some in operation in the next few years.

But nothing in Australia is as it seems in the self defence arena. We are a twisted nation that writhes between brave ANZAC tradition displayed a century ago and a despicable self serving attitude at present that treats our sole long standing ally, the US, as an eternal milking cow able to sustain and protect our freeloading exploitation without any compunction or embarrassment on our part.

Even this ASPI conference has been hijacked by the warped Australian psyche. Mark Thomson is senior analyst for defence economics at ASPI and in today’s ASPI blog advises that the conference is constrained by three parameters which are “Collins class must be replaced when it reaches its life-of-type. Second, the replacement boats must be built in South Australia. Third, the new boats must have conventional (ie non-nuclear) propulsion”.

These are ludicrous restraints to put on the acquisition of a critical underwater defence platform. To limit our choice to what ancient technology can be built in South Australia when there is a world market available with state of the art weapons systems is just crass contempt for the security of this nation, and to rule out the most lethal submarine in the world at present, the Virginia class nuclear submarine, is like going to a bull sale and buying a bull without testicles.

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine

Virginia-class nuclear attack submarine

These perverse decisions have been brought in by the two major parties purely for political reasons and show an amazing lack of concern for the acquisition of the most effective high technology weapons to defend our shoreline.

ASPI does much good work and is a great source of information and opinion but when it comes to matters of government policy ASPI has to toe the government of the day line or risk losing essential government funding. Former Prime Minister John Howard no doubt had the best of intentions when he set ASPI up and it is a crying shame to see how the present government has wantonly hijacked Howard’s agenda for its own short term political advantage.

The Australian Defence White Paper Committee is chaired by the executive director of ASPI, Peter Jennings and senior ASPI analyst Andrew Davies is on the committee. The DWP will be a perverted document before it is written even though this document has the heavy responsibility of choosing the next Australian submarine.

The Virginia-class nuclear powered submarine is the cheapest and most advanced submarine in the world at present as judged on quantity and quality of effective firepower, speed, endurance, stealth, sensors, size, littoral capabilities, spying and quality of build by a nation that has been building excellent nuclear submarines for fifty years without any major problems.

One Virginia submarine is as effective as any 3 diesel electric, or AIP submarines Australia may be able to assemble. This means we acquire $6 billion more effectiveness per nuclear submarine than we could achieve with one future submarine.

We have been hounded for a decade about the uselessness of the Collins-class submarines with endless DWPs and discussions about a replacement submarine. We have wasted ten years with indecision and freeloading policies on the US. A decisive government could have placed orders for Virginia submarines a decade ago and today we could have already commissioned our first couple of nuclear submarines to patrol our vast oceans.

Surely for once Australia can make a timely rational decision to buy the cheapest and most effective attack submarine in the world which is the Virginia-class nuclear submarine.

Prod the dragon on human rights

CITIZENS FOR DEFENCE

Robert Bond    Director    Citizens for Defence

www.citizensfordefence.org      Citizens for Defence (BondBobby) on Twitter

US marine amphibious hovercraft

US marine amphibious hovercraft

 Prod the dragon on human rights

Peter Layton on the Lowy blog says the strategy in the China Seas is not working and a refocus on human rights and similar Chinese frailties may succeed where military balance has failed.

Why not prod the dragon with human rights issues etc and make him more belligerent than he is now? This soft power can work effectively until hard power is used. China has clearly demonstrated in the last five years that it will use hard power to gain its goals.

But unless Asian nations including Australia arm themselves and are prepared to defend their sovereignty en-mass there seems to be little we can do but buy Chinese white flags and wave them at China.

The US has realized that leading by example does not work with selfish Australians and other Asian nations and that saving us from the ravages of a marauding Japanese nation in WW2 is of little relevance to the present generation.

ww2-US troops

                                               ww2-US troops

Ideally, the US should reduce its defence budget to 1.48% of GDP to match Australia and its other Asian allies and mothball its fleet and missile systems saving a few old frigates and torpedo boats to match our contribution to the Alliance.

The US just cannot afford to carry the rest of the world on its shoulders in the interests of peace. Sequestration is biting deeply with stress on ship maintenance, aircraft numbers and in all areas of the US defence force.

Freedom is not free and Australia should stop bludging on the US.