Sunday, August 03, 2014

Sailing Into a Sea of Nuance

What? Russia will base one of their French-built amphibious warship on the Black Sea where it can threaten Ukraine, Georgia, Romania, Bulgaria, and Turkey? Or deploy to the Mediterranean Sea? Who could have seen that coming?


The second Mistral, called Sevastopol and set to join the Russian Black Sea fleet based in Crimea, is due to be delivered next year.

Where the first ship, Vladivostok, will be based (the Pacific Fleet?) or the two to be built by Russia, was not noted in the article.

I assume the Black Sea will get at least one.

Recall that Russia unconvincingly claimed they would not base these ships in the Black Sea (or Baltic):

Russia is so reset that their plan to buy 4 large French amphibious warships includes basing them in the fleets that need them the least! Recall that Russia said that they'd base them in the Pacific and Northern fleets. And France pretends to believe them.

Well, they'll be in place for the next war, eh?

Yeah. Who'd have believed the Russians would just lie?

The French dismiss the worries of allies and potential victims in a manner that surely has their marketing people cringing:

French officials also play down the military significance of the ships and the impact of the cancellation of the deal on Moscow.

One official said the ships were being supplied unarmed and were “not sophisticated”.

Hah! For 1.2 billion Euros, you too can have simple and ineffective ships for your navy!

The French officials did not explain why the Russians would buy foreign weapons if they are so unimportant.

Please note that the basic hull with a flight deck and hangar is not that sophisticated. And note that the Russians will add the weapons and other sophisticated equipment under the contract.