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Everything posted by BansheeOne

  1. http://www.navytimes...marines-053012/
  2. I don't want to out-cruiser the Brits, and I don't think they would consider (moderately, just 21) more armored cruisers a threat the same way as the growing German battlefleet. I just want better coverage for commerce protection/raiding (this might include more light cruisers too, but at further expense of battle/coastal defense ships). Though I admit I always neglect available slipspace when I go on naval construction binges. My proposed alternate 1914 fleet looks something like this: Coastal Defense Ships 6 x Siegfried class (3,500 ts, 3 x 24 cm) 2 x Odin class (3,500 ts, 3 x 24 cm) 4 x Brandenburg class (5,000 ts, 4 x 24 cm) 4 x Kaiser Friedrich III. class (5,000 ts, 4 x 24 cm) 4 x Wittelsbach class (6,000 ts, 4 x 24 cm) 4 x Braunschweig class (7,000 ts, 4 x 28 cm) 4 x Deutschland class (7,000 ts, 4 x 28 cm) 4 x Nassau class (9,000 ts, 6 x 28 cm) 4 x Helgoland class (11,000 ts, 6 x 30,5 cm) 4 x Kaiser class (12,000 ts, 6 x 30,5 cm) 4 x König class (12,500 ts, 6 x 30,5 cm) === 44 Battlecruisers 2 x von der Tann class 4 x Moltke class 2 x Seydlitz class 6 x Derfflinger class (still building) === 14 Armored Cruisers 2 x Fürst Bismarck class 2 x Prinz Heinrich class 4 x Prinz Adalbert class 4 x Roon class 4 x Scharnhorst class === 16 Protected Cruisers 2 x Kaiserin Augusta class 10 x Victoria Luise class === 12 Light Cruisers 20 x Gazelle class 14 x Bremen class 8 x Königsberg class 4 x Dresden class 8 x Kolberg class 8 x Magedeburg class 4 x Karlsruhe class 4 x Graudenz class (still building) === 70
  3. Huh, that's humble. I was thinking in terms of doubling numbers of AC/BC per class at the expense of BBs, which in turn would be built at half the size but double the numbers. Seems I was more affected by the jingoism of that novel than I allowed for.
  4. Then I'm officially out, since that's a session week for me. But while I would have loved to come, frankly the Prague I&I and my birthday are sucking up enough material and time ressources for the year already, so not that big of a deal. I have now taken Friday before the Prague weekend off and would urge anybody taking the turn over Berlin to report precise time and gate/platform of arrival so we can plan pickup.
  5. Interesting issue. Of course, breast-feeding in public per se should not be a problem. But I would agree doing it in uniform would be a breach of regulations. You can do it in your room, office, maybe even in the mess around people familiar with you, and if necessary in the restroom, but outdoors general rules for wearing of and conduct in uniform should apply. And judging from Ken's tales, an officer's correct answer to a situation where an underling has breached rules and regulations is "Gunny, do something."
  6. So IOW, prepare to defend the German coast and deny the Baltic approaches to competitors including Britain, and to protect your own commerce (including breaking a possible blockade) while raiding that of others? I guess this means coastal battleships geared towards deployment in inshore waters and the Baltic (something like a beefed-up Sverige class), with maybe a dreadnought squadron for the approaches not substantial enough to provoke Britain into an arms race, plus of course torpedo boats and mine warfare which actually were most employed in WW I. And cruisers for commercial warfare, which however would have to follow the British evolution into the battlecruiser in part, plus submarines. The Norway option is logical from a strategic point of view, but of course politically dicey. Even diplomatic overtures to secure Norwegian ports could prove troublesome. The novel harped a lot about how Britain pressured the neutrals against Germany by the same means of controling sea commerce, but of course it posited a perfidious Albion never allowing Germany to innocently spread its Deutschtum in the world (though the author is actually not unsympathetic to Britain as "another Germanic people" and quite matter-of-factly in his portrayal of British naval leaders, if unfortunately ruled by bloodsucking international capitalists).
  7. While I was home over last weekend, my father gave me a 1934 novel he had taken from my late grandaunt's household, which also yielded the original documents prompting the recent thread about her brother. The novel is titled "Der Großadmiral" and a rather serious, if short case of hero worship for Tirpitz undertaken with negligible literary talent; it seems my grandaunt kept it mostly due to the passing references to an ancestor of ours, Admiral Friedrich Ingenohl, commander of the High Seas Fleet at the outbreak of WW I. If you believe the author, Germany would have a) avoided and won that war if everybody had just listened to Tirpitz; but alas, the stupidity and ill will of the rest of government up to and including the Kaiser and the traitorous schemes of the Social Democrats, Catholics, Liberals, freemasons, international capitalists and ... about every other non-protestant non-conservative non-navy German and non-German kept him from selflessly assuming unified command of the navy, and see what that got you. Obviously the plot is loaded with the position of that time that Germany could only achieve its rightful place as equal among the great powers if it had sufficient naval power to secure independent (specifically from the good will of Britain) access to the sea and international maritime trade. For all its flaws, the novel manages to make that motivation and the actual impact of the British blockade during the war quite clear, so you can sort of put yourself in the shoes of policymakers (though obviously the diplomats who always opposed the fleet plans due to the risks they saw with British-German relations are all appeasing liberal pansy-ass wusses here). I think we may have a thread on what Germany should really have done before; ISTR suggestions of building more cruisers rather than battleships to protect international shipping and interests while not provoking Britain into an arms race Germany could only lose, but I can't find it. Let's also exclude the benefit of hindsight and knowing of technologies to come while taking the view of the time, the competition of nations for their place in the world a natural given. You also can't influence the dissolution of Bismarck's treaty system, you're just in charge of naval policy - though you have total control of construction and strategy there, and may suggest treaties on fleet limits. Your overriding objective however is securing German acccess to the sea. What would you do?
  8. Who am I trying to fool, I'd do her even if specifically because she was a foul-mouthed dirty-minded nymphomaniac. On cue: The first two female army mountain guides graduated from Mittenwald Mountain Warfare School on Friday. The school commander specifically stressed the course level stayed the same as "the challenges of nature make no difference between man and woman" (of course the cynical might wonder why he feels the need to stress this). But then SSGT Beatrice Soyter, pictured below, is an Eurocup-level biathlete. [The mountain guide course consists of a summer part and a winter part of four months each. The summer part includes several multiple-week mountain tours in the German, Austrian and French Alps and the Italian Dolomites with theoretical and practical elements of climbing (including waterfalls), orientation, guiding, meteorology and mountain rescue (including by helicopter). The winter part adds qualification as a ski instructor, snow assessment and avalanche control (including blasting).]
  9. I was thinking the dark-haired one front left, while good to grab and elastic on impact, was probably exceeding military weight ratio requirements ...
  10. You have saved this thread. Uhm, that's your squad? What branch are you in, Gundam Mobile Suits? Where are the ugly ones? The shy? The butch types?
  11. It seems shoddy journalism caused this to be reported as "the first all-female submarine crew" in some sources.
  12. I've seen nobody here demanding that "because some women can do these things, or analogues to the requirements for Infantry, then we ought to allow and enable all women in general to be assigned a job where they will be required to do so". I've seen lots of people demanding that women should fulfill the same physical requirements as men to serve in the same jobs, and complaining that in reality, standards will be lowered to fulfill political demands. So I remain puzzled that you keep beating this strawman.
  13. Which would then have been type-classified as the MiG-what - 33, 35, 37, 39? What becomes of the Su-47 and today's PAK-FA?
  14. You know, you keep reinventing this argument which as far as I can see nobody else has brought up, then spending a dozen paragraphs to refute it. Otherwise the debate would have been finished on the last page. Not that I'm going to tell you how to spend your time, since there seems to be a lot in your life.
  15. Yup, on average we're terribly ignorant on military reality on this here grate sight, and in desperate need of expansive revelations to be educated about it. Thanks for that.
  16. I don't think we'll gain anything by belaboring the point of individual fitness requirements for any given occupation, since everybody seems to agree on their necessity. Everybody also has some anecdotal evidence of people who failed or exceeded expectations, of miserable loaders and courageous medics to throw around. And B does not necessarily always follow from A. For all my lack of strength and always being the weakest link in the squad during medical basic, I never had any trouble lifting and carrying anybody over my shoulder with properly executed technique, for example, which makes Luke being carried uphill by a petite girl totally believable to me (and when I transferred to military police and had the joy to do basic all over again, I found that with three months of service over my new squadmates, I could outmarch the lot of them, including rather more athletic types, while carrying an additional backpack).
  17. I took this opportunity to read up on actual physical demands for the Bundeswehr today, since my personal memory stems back from conscription time, when recruits (all male, obviously) were graded as T1 through T5; IIRC T1 being "unrestricted fitness for all occupations", T2 "fit with restrictions for individual occupations", T3 "limited fitness for service", T4 "unfit for service at this time" and T5 "unfit for service". T2/T3 would get exclusions for various occupations - based on the medical exam, not a fitness test. T1 types tended to end up in light infantry or the Guard Battalion; I was T2 due to slight sight deficiencies and borderline blood pressure after doing the usual ten squats for stress. I also went through the officer candidate exam separately and passed the physical fitness test for volunteers easily despite being worried about it before, never having been the sportive type. Back then it was 4 x 9 meter pendulum sprint, 40 seconds of sit-ups and push-ups each, a standing long jump and a twelve minute Cooper Test of running. There was a maximum of six points per item to be achieved, with a total of 15 and no less than two in any individual test required to pass. Of my group, only one failed when he gave up in the final Cooper Test. I think I pretty much maxed the push-ups and sit-ups (for which I had specifically trained), and the long jump by virtue of my bean-pole legs. It seems at least today enlisted and NCO applicants take a cardio stress test instead of the Cooper test. In reality, I lacked upper-body strength (still do), and scaling the wall at the obstacle course during basic training was damn nigh impossible to me. There was a test involving chin-ups only in training, and I managed a grand total of one. We were expected to significantly increase our achievements by the end of the term, which in my case was secured by my squad leader grabbing me in the second test and pushing me up while loudly counting "Two, three, four, five, six ...", with me protesting between laughs that nobody would believe this (but nobody asked questions, either). Every soldier was expected to take this test at least once per year. When women were admitted, they had to go through the same PFT, but with less required to get the same points as men. I would want to believe that the personnel offering career tracks at the end of the exam were keeping in mind that the female results counted for less than the male ones, but my above experience with superiors trying to adjust reality to expectations don't make me hopeful. As the US, we don't actually have occupation-specific tests (save for the special operations forces), and the only saving grace would likely have been the aforementioned self-selection of women towards the "typical female" specialities. Fast-forward to 2010, and we no longer have the yearly PFT, but the all-brand-new-and-shiny Basic Fitness Test. It includes an 11 x 10 meter sprint test where you start from lying on your belly with your hands on your back, turn around a pylon after ten meters, lie back down at the start, then go again (maximum time of 60 seconds); hanging chin-up for as long as possible (minimum time of five seconds), but starting from a box and not pulling yourself up (well, that would have solved all my problems!); and a 1,000 meter run (maximum time of 6:30 minutes). According to the Bundeswehr website, "a sophisticated point system referencing genetically based biological differences refering to gender and age permits a fair, scientifically-founded judgement". Apparently his translates to female requirements reduced by 13 percent for running, and 30 percent for hanging. Another bonus applies for soldiers of age 36 and up. Jump to the end of that year, and a female cadet drops out of the main mast of Navy sail training ship Gorch Fock in the port of Salvador de Bahia, Brazil, and dies. To be fair, she had been a prior service NCO, deployed in Operation ATALANTA off East Africa, and there were other factors than mere physical fitness at play, not least that the cadet crew had just been flown in from Germany the night before and had to cope with the change of time and climate zones in addition to little sleep while going up into the rigging for the first time in their life. Some also questioned whether training on a sail ship was still necessary in this day and age. The point is, among the recommendations made by an investigative committee and since implemented was a greater emphasis on making sure of the required physical fitness in pre-training prior to embarking cadets. Which is, of course, nothing else but an occupation-specific standard. And all that took was the death of a young sailor (who happened to be a woman).
  18. Yeah, but I think a village massacre like that would fit into that thread very nicely.
  19. Well, what did you expect when you started this thread? Though I'd say, quaint old-fashioned notions aside (which I think are a quite natural part of men's biological programming), everybody here would agree to "meet the same standards, get the same job". As variously stated, it's the people who lower standards for women out of political reasons who screw things up. I really have to finish that Clantasy eventually.
  20. The "everybody meets the same standards, everybody gets the same speciality" approach is the fairly self-evident ideal preached by most factual-minded folks. Of course reality intrudes, particularly involving people beset with fulfilling quotas for women in the force. Once ordered to open non-medical career tracks to women by the European Court (which was totally warranted, since the earlier refusal was based upon a bullshit interpretation of the constitutional clause prohibiting female conscription), in the usual thorough German way we took a scientific approach and made a law stipulating that women should be hired and promoted favorably over equally-qualified men until a quota of 15 percent (50 percent in medical) was reached in all branches and rank groups, based upon the theory that members of a minority less than that are treated as mere "token" within a given group, with resulting adverse effects. Good theory, little real-world background, because you put a strain on superiors to evaluate female soldiers favorably IOT make them promotable over male comrades to fulfill the targets of the policy. Even if superiors resist that strain, you automatically put women under suspicion of benefiting from it, starting with different physical entry standards. As usual, negative examples will be paraded by the discontent; and I must admit my jaw dropped when I saw a female SSGT(!) struggling to load on a Leopard 2 on a TV programme. Fortunately, most female soldiers don't want any special treatment, and in general are pretty self-selecting towards medical and administrative rather than combat specialities. However, there are women who can keep up with men in the latter, like the first female 1st LT who led an infantry platoon in combat last year in Kunduz (of course she looks pretty much like a dude, too). Also, the special forces have so far resisted lowering their physical standards to admit women; though I hear the women who have tried out for the KSK so far didn't fail due to physical requirements - most of the selections is about mindset after all, and 90+ percent of men wash out there, too. But actually KSK is about to set up a dedicated female sub-unit to make use of specific female capabilities - not for knocking down doors, but blending in for reconnaissance, searching women in Muslim countries without creating unnecessary strain for the mission, etc. I believe the Brits and US do the same for similar reasons.
  21. (Come to think, "rum, sodomy and the leash" would actually be a fairly good summation of the Abu Ghraib affair ...)
  22. Would have posted this in the China thread, but it's not a Current Military Affair by any measure ... http://www.bbc.co.uk...-china-18170693
  23. Well, the Luftwaffe always owned our Hawks, Nikes and Patriots, and is currently taking possession of what is left of the Heeresflugabwehr after the phase-out of Roland and Gepard (IOW, Ozelot and MANTIS) - it's traditional! Reading further, it appears the US Army was dissatisfied with ADATS' reliability, and Linebacker was procured because of that as an "interim solution", not in parallel. Of course interim solutions have a habit to stay forever ... maybe complemented by HUMRAAM?
  24. Well, AFAIK the available M8 prototypes were pulled from storage and deployed with 82nd Airborne in OIF. Though I give you there was the Thunderbolt demonstrator testing the XM291 120 mm gun along with various gadgetry under the FCS programme. Another stunted story: US Army air defense. There was Linebacker, obviously, but I just found that ADATS was tentatively designated the MIM-146 and meant to replace Chapparal, supposedly also on a Bradley chassis. Of course Roland was once intended to fill the same role and was cut without peace breaking out, but obviously in a protracted Cold War scenario you couldn't just count on the USAF establishing air superiority.
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