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Comment Re:Taking out capital ships? (Score 1) 618

I am unsure how increased registration scrutiny will help anything.

Liberia (or any other registrar) is not really in any position to check what the ships are doing at any given voyage. All they can do is periodically check that the ship is seaworthy and give it a certificate to that effect. What can Liberia do about a ship registered in Liberia, owned by British company that has leased it to a Japanese firm for carrying raw material from India to its factory in China. Plus add in shell companies, intermediatories etc the picture gets quite complicated. At how many points are you going to check?

Hitting out at the registrar country nets you nothing. Its like arguing that since a california plate car ran you over, you gotta sue the Californian DMV.

Increasing the scrutiny of Liberian flagged vessels does nothing but hassel the Liberians and their, but there is nothing to deter the actual perpetrator.

Comment Re:No shock there.... (Score 1) 1204

Naah, they were just doing a through flight safety inspection - down to the last screw and bolt.

And who is to say Belenko didn't smuggle in prohibited agricultural produce in this aircarft? He didn't - and we know it for sure cause the customs people went over every inch of that aircraft. With a microscope.

Comment Re:Taking out capital ships? (Score 1) 618

Why isn't a simple radar return good enough? Time of flight of the Klub at extreme range is less than 14 minutes, the carrier can move at best about 10 km in that period. That area can easily be searched by the missiles own radar.

The mine that hit the Samuel Roberts wasn't designed to sink 400,000 ton super tankers, for the simple reason that when it was designed (in 1908) no such ships existed.

The US carriers are extremely well protected - but no one really knows how they would fair against modern antiship missiles. While the carrier may be able to shrug off a piddling little klub or two without significantly impacting flight operations it is unlikely that it can survive a hit by a shipwreak or a 650mm torpedo and live to tell the tale.

I suspect the lay public has a someone inflated opinion of the US military because it has not had to face a halfway decent opponent in a very long time.

Comment Re:Taking out capital ships? (Score 1) 618

Technically I suppose Liberia carries the reponsibility; but what does it mean in the real world?

You mean the US will start sinking Russian, Chinese, German, French, Italian, Indian, Japanese, Saudi, Korean and ... US Ships which are flying the Liberian Flag?

I think US can get away with willy nilly sinking of Russian or Chinese or British ships. But considering the extent to which the US political establishment is compromised by corporate insterests it is unlikely to survive sinking of US owned ships :)

Comment Re:Taking out capital ships? (Score 1) 618

It is not hard to defend against these kinds of missiles - when you are all spooled up and expecting an attack. Modern US carrier battle group rely on a number of layer to protect themselves - long range air cover followed by long range, medium range and short range air defense missiles plus point defense artillery, electronic jammers & seducers as well as last ditch target obfuscation. These battlegroups are generally so agile that it is a non trivial problem to find and target them with the degree of accuracy.

Using these against a carrier battle group is not the only option. For instance an Persian-American conflict which sees half a dozen ships hit just out of the territorial waters off San Francisco or New York will likely have a crippling effect on the shipping industry.

Comment Apple had to do it. (Score 1) 2

They had to do this for the consumers own good. Do you realize the amount of RDF Apple puts in each iPad? If more than three iPads are brought together in close proximity there it could result in spontaneous reality meltdown!

Comment Re:Money (Score 1) 317

All wars are wars of attrition, unless your enemy decides to throw in the towel. It should have been obvious by 1941 that neither Stalin nor Churchill would be willing to do so, so it strikes me as kind of insane to not prepare for a war of attrition.

After the excellent results of lightning war in Poland, France and Russia itself it was reasonable to assume that Germany would not be fighting an attritive war. Was it foolish not to plan for an attritive war in Russia just in case? Sure. But was it insane to disregard it? Surely not in 41. War is a risk, and hitlers decision in 41 was a risky one; but not an insane gamble. That is the only point I am trying to make.

I'm not sure I buy that she would have had "nothing whatsoever to fear from America". The United States still had a sizable edge over Germany in both GDP and population. Pacifying all that territory in the USSR would have been a huge drain on German manpower and material. The US will have the atomic bomb by 1945 regardless of what happens on the Eastern Front.

With Russian out of the picture as a major combatant and German focus on any perceived threats from across the channel I posit that Air Superiority and hence Cross Channel Invasion are simply impossible for the allies. With or without a nuclear armed US.

You are looking at it in a vacuum and assuming that the only contribution made by the US was Patton's Army. What about lend-lease? For the most part the Red Army produced it's own weapons but not the logistical system to keep them supplied. Most of their trucks, locomotives and rolling stock came from lend-lease. Virtually all of their aviation fuel came from lend-lease, as did a sizable percentage of their aircraft. Foodstuffs, boots, and raw materials were also received from lend-lease. Where would the Soviet war effort be without this aid?

I agree, without lendlease and overlord, Russian triumph would have easily been delayed by an year at the very least. My point is that Lendlease made an signigicant impact because the Eastern Front turned out to be attritive and not the expected blitzkreig victory in 41-42. If Hitlers, fairly reasonable gamble in my view, on the Russian Front had paid off and Russia was knocked out of the war then leadlease would have been moot right? Since Germany failed on the eastern front in 41-42, defeat was again guaranteed irrespective of the leadlease. Hence my assertion that on a grand strategic level nothing that US could do matter, the fulcrum remained the Red Army.

The biggest contribution of the US in ww2 in europe was that it ensured that the Russian Tanks didnt roll upto the atlantic. Ultimate fate of Germany was not in US hands; which brings me back to the original point - German declaration of war on the US was not necessarily a "insane" one.

Comment Re:Money (Score 1) 317

You are looking at the options available to Hitler from a retrospective post war view; i.e already assuming that WW2 would be a war of attrition. From Hitlers point of view being conciliatory and magnanimous to the western democracies was pointless (see his attitude to British Empire and how little dividend it paid him).

In December 41, he was pretty much master of Europe, despite setbacks in the Russian hinterland, it was reasonable and not insane for Hitler to assume that the Russian Campaign would be wrapped up in 42.

If that had happened, and Germany been free to direct its resources west/mediterranian again, there was nothing what so ever to fear from America.

Declaring War on the US did not change his position in Europe much, it would be years till US could make its presence felt in Europe; it would help him in two ways though. Intensify the blockade of UK (which did happen and was again a close run thing) and give Japan a tremendous boost.

And Hitler was right about the impact of making war on US, very little of consequence happened till the middle of 44, by which time his goose was cooked anyways on the Eastern Front (see Bagration) which for Germany in World War 2 was always the field of decision.

Hitlers declaration of war on the US might have been a debatable trade off, it was hardly an insane one.

Regarding Japan, it was a case of devil and the deep blue sea. An oil embargo pretty much forced their hand. It was either cave in and give up the empire or fight for it and sue for peace from an advantageous position.

Regarding negotiated peace, world war 2 was pretty much an anomoly in that the Allies refused to negotiate and demanded unconditional surrender. The norm before before ww2 had always been of wars being concluded with a peace treaty.

Comment Re:Money (Score 1) 317

Germany went to war with virtually the entire world -- she was fighting twenty times her population and nearly five times her GDP by the end of 1941....Any logical observer could have predicted the outcome of those choices...

You speak as though wars are decided solely by Quatermasters. If you paid any real attention to how close run thing the second world war in europe was, it would disabuse you of the notion that allied victory in Europe was a self evident thing. Yes the axis were poorly placed to fight a drawn out war of attrition (which is when GDP and population come into play), but the German game plan was not to fight a war of attrition but short sharp overwhelming one. It did work very well in France in 40 (it finished so fast the GDP, population etc had no chance to play a part).

Irrespective of what America could do later on, had Germany triumphed in 41 in the east (it was a touch and go business there) for all practical purposes Germany would have won the war.

Comment Re:The man behind the curtain... (Score 1) 418

I don't think ITAR would apply as no arms or equipment would be traded internationally. What I guess I am asking is if there are any legal reasons that suggests Boeing could invest in BAe or Dassault but not Sukhoi. Given the political climate it would be foolish indeed, as you suggest, for a US arms major to associate with a russian arms manufacturer.

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