Tag Archives: Tomahawk

Syria action ‘would involve submarine cruise missiles’

The HMS Triumph was among the submarines that fired sea to land Tomahawk cruise missiles in Libya.

Any UK military action in Syria would involve submarine-launched cruise missiles rather than air strikes, a military expert has predicted.

Nick de Larrinaga of IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly told ITV News: “I’d be very surprised if any military action by the UK didn’t consist of cruise missile strikes.

“Equally, I’d be very surprised if it did involve air strikes. It would be very risky given the strength of Syrian air defences.”

David Cameron has recalled Parliament to discuss Syria. Credit: Toby Melville/PA Wire

Reports emerged today that warplanes had arrived in the UK’s Akrotiri airbase in Cyprus, but De Larrinaga does not believe these would be used against Syria.

“The Akrotiti base could play a supporting role to any military action, but it’s highly unlikely that manned aircraft would be involved at this point – although it’s possible the UK could support the US by monitoring airspace.”

De Larrinaga, the magazine’s Europe Editor, said the chances of western military action are increasing and strikes could occur “quickly” after a decision was made.

“The likelihood of small scale, precision strikes using Tomahawk cruise missiles has significantly increased since Britain, France and the US essentially accused Assad of using chemical weapons,” he said.

UN inspectors entered Syria after the alleged chemical attack by the regime. Credit: REUTERS/Abo Alnour Alhaji

Submarines would likely be deployed in eastern Mediterranean waters or in the Gulf.

De Larrinaga added that airstrikes could be possible “to a limited degree” within Syria using stand-off weapons, without entering Syrian airspace, but cruise missiles remained “the far most likely option”.

Parliament is being recalled on Thursday for MPs to discuss the issue, although De Larrinaga says military action would not get UN backing.

“UN Security Council-endorsed military action is a no-go because Russia and China would veto it. It could be a US-led coalition, or possibly a NATO-endorsed mission,” he said.

In 2011, the UK carried out strikes on Libya two days before Parliamentary approval was sought, although there had been a UN resolution endorsing a no fly-zone.

Source – ITV News

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HMS Triumph – Medals for crew who helped to topple Gaddafi

SUBMARINERS who played a pivotal role in the NATO mission to topple the Gaddafi regime in Libya last year are to be rewarded for their service.

The crew of nuclear submarine HMS Triumph will be presented with medals at a ceremony in HMNB Devonport next week.

During the conflict they conducted many operations which in turn were key in preventing planned attacks including the mining of Misrata Harbour.

Much of the information was kept under wraps until July this year when The Herald spent a week onboard the submarine and the crew revealed the extent of their role.

Triumph’s crew foiled another assault when an unmanned inflatable boat was found with two mannequins at the controls and a box containing a ton of explosives on board.

Code named Operation Ellamy, the mission saw the first strike from the hunter-killer submarine, and the first from any British unit, on March 18, 2011 – just seven days after they were re-tasked to Libya.

Although the exact number of Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles fired by HMS Triumph could not be revealed, the submarine conducted six precision strikes each firing more than one of the deadly missiles on key targets including one of Colonel Gaddafi’s compounds.

After the operation some of the crew members said they felt “disheartened” by the lack of recognition for their service. Another described the feeling as a sense they had been “written out of history”.

But now the boat and 87 members of her crew, who have also been nominated for a Millie award, will receive the Unified Protector medal.

Commander Rob Dunn, 48, the former commanding officer of HMS Triumph, said: “We were operating in a hostile environment with gunfire echoing through the hull for nearly seven weeks.

“Our role in Libya was not widely publicised but there was a lot of individual recognition for certain members of the crew.”

As a result of the war, three members of HMS Triumph’s crew were presented Chief of Joint Operations Commendations in the operational awards list.

Cdr Dunn said the crew worked under continuous “risk and rigour” during their mammoth 10-month deployment.

Source – This is Plymouth