Web page sponsored by General Dynamics Land Systems Force Protection Europe (GDLS FPE)
27 Aug 14. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. The Prime Minister telephoned (27 Aug 14) the two Afghan Presidential candidates, urging them both to continue to work through the process set out by the US Secretary of State and to form a unity government as quickly as possible. (PM.s Office, 27 Aug 14.)
Comment: The NATO Secretary General announced (26 Aug 14) the change of command of ISAF, from General J F Dunford to General J F Campbell. General Dunford has been appointed as Commandant of the US Marine Corps. [The Generals. initials are correct as shown!] (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 14/34, 01 Sep 14)
27 Aug 14. Iraq: Further Aid Package. The Department for International Development (DfID) confirmed (27 Aug 14) that there have been eight UK aid flights into Erbil in Northern Iraq during the past fortnight, in addition to seven UK relief air drops over Mount Sinjar delivered by the RAF. A further £10m package of emergency humanitarian relief was also announced, bringing the total UK support for displaced Iraqis to £23m.
Comment: The FCO advised (29 Aug 14) that there is to be a change of Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq. Mr F (Francis) Baker OBE, currently the British Ambassador in Kuwait, is to replace Mr S (Simon) Collis CMG during September 2014.
28 Aug 14. Syria: Non-humanitarian Aid Provided. The FCO published (28 Aug 14) a guide to the non-humanitarian aid the UK Government is providing in response to the Syrian conflict. A package of life-saving equipment for the Supreme Military Council and associated units has been delivered. In addition, the UK has provided protection against chemical weapons including: escape hoods, nerve-agent pre-treatment tablets and detector paper.
Comment: The UK Government is said to be working closely with a number of organisations to support the Syrian people: the Syrian National Coalition, civil society, NGOs, journalists and human rights activists.
(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 14/34, 01 Sep 14)
29 Aug 14. HMS ILLUSTRIOUS: Decommissioned 29 Aug 14. The UK Royal Navy has decommissioned the last Invincible-class aircraft carrier, HMS Illustrious, after it clocked up 900,000 miles on operations across the globe in its 32-year service. HMS Illustrious commanding officer captain Mike Utley said: “It has been a great honour to be the final commanding officer of HMS Illustrious. “This is a symbolic day in the history of the Royal Navy as we lower the ensign for the final time on the Invincible-class. “We say goodbye to Illustrious with sadness and pride as we remember her outstanding history, but also excitement as the Royal Navy looks to the future and HMS Queen Elizabeth.” HMS Ocean, which has recently completed a £65m refurbishment, will replace Illustrious as the nation’s helicopter carrier, before eventually being replaced by two new 65,000t aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales. During its service, Illustrious was deployed in the aftermath of the Falklands War, assisted in maintaining a no-fly zone in Bosnia in the 1990s and carried out similar activities in the Arabian Gulf in 1998. The vessel also helped the support mission in the Philippines in the wake of typhoon Haiyan. The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) is seeking to preserve HMS Illustrious, but a condition is that the purchaser has to keep the vessel in the UK. (Source: naval-technology.com)
DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS Comment: HMS ILLUSTRIOUS is the last of the Invincible Class aircraft carriers, INVINCIBLE and ARK ROYAL having already been decommissioned. Of the three, ILLUSTRIOUS was deemed to be the most suitable for “preservation for further non-military use”.
27 Aug 14. Survey Ships: All Change. The RN reported (2