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  1. #51
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    Spider, That report you listed is ,IMHO, very selfserving and is more appropriate to the UK-EEC debate than to defence strategies. The policy can have the benefits listed wrt highend technology programms but it is nigh impossible to suggest that crucial national security interests demand the retention of shipyards to ensure steelcutting and welding skills. A key recurring theme of the report was the huge value of exports ,the use of exports to shape the domestic policies of the purchasers (doesnt seem to matter to the Saudis) and to have an "agile" industry; none of which are relevant concerning UK hull production as matters stand. The RN will never get any VFM whilst BAE can give quotes safe from any meaningful competition. The money wasted is balanced by cutting manpower in the RN and ends up with the shareholders of BAE.

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  3. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by spider View Post
    Dev, I have no idea how to split up your post as you have mine, so forgive me... I'll have to deal with each point in turn.

    1. 'That is the excuse'...You're partly right...its about jobs...I did say that about eight posts back. But its more complicated than that. Have a read at this which will give you an indication of why HM Government are committed to retaining a sovereign warship building capability. http://www.kcl.ac.uk/sspp/policy-ins...t-a-burden.pdf I will patiently await your reply once you've had a read at that for starters. Your assertion that it is about votes is interesting...because that hasn't really worked out for either Labour or the Conservatives up in Glasgow...has it?

    2. 'Cutting of hull numbers'...that doesn't really read properly but if you are trying to say that development costs led to hull numbers on T45 being cut then I'd agree, that's why I believe another two hulls could have been delivered for slightly less.

    3. 'Frigates and RFA's are currently being tasked'...well isn't that the point? That the five new OPV's will help take the strain off an over-employed escort fleet?

    4. 'The RN have forgotten'...now I'm Army not Navy but I'm pretty sure the Lords and Masters of the Royal Navy know exactly what they will or won't be able to do with all their shiny new toys. I'm happy to be proven wrong but short of a world war, in which case the Royal Navy will be operating as part of a global coalition, I can't see a conflict scenario where they will ever deploy more than one carrier group or amphibious warfare group at a time.

    5. 'I'd agree'...that's a little confusing...the only surface ships currently in build for the RN are the Queen Elizabeth Class and the Batch 2 River OPV's. They won't even cut the steel on T26 for at least a couple of years.

    6. 'Already in development since 1998'...I know...but what has that to do with the fact that they will be built on a rolling programme to replace the T23's up to the early 2030's?

    7. 'P61 class is more capable'...I'm sure they are...different role...10-12 years more modern...wouldn't doubt it.

    8. ' Anyway, there will not be any additional OPVs (Rivers, P61 class or anything else) until the 2 CPVs are replaced (with new CPVs) and Eithne is replaced (with a MRV)'...can we run a book on this? What odds are you offering?
    Just put [ quote ] the quote and [ /quote ] (without the spaces in the brackets - some don't like it but personally I think it makes more sense

    1
    I skimmed it, what danno said. For all the money put into the shipbuilders by the RN, how much has been exported.

    3
    It it use of spare capacity

    4
    If going over a hostile beach against a major opponent your going to have at least 1 ARG and 1 carrier in support with fast area. These hull numbers mean that the RN have to operate as a coalition (independent action will not be possible)

    5
    I know I was 2nd'ing what you said

    6
    Yes so something that could have been cutting edge at the start of the project, may now have already been fielded by others

    7
    No same roles - both are OPVs (both navies use them in the same roles)

    8
    Don't need to run a book, someone already has
    http://www.defence.ie/WebSite.nsf/WP2015E
    Page 66-68

  4. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by danno View Post
    Spider, That report you listed is ,IMHO, very selfserving and is more appropriate to the UK-EEC debate than to defence strategies. The policy can have the benefits listed wrt highend technology programms but it is nigh impossible to suggest that crucial national security interests demand the retention of shipyards to ensure steelcutting and welding skills. A key recurring theme of the report was the huge value of exports ,the use of exports to shape the domestic policies of the purchasers (doesnt seem to matter to the Saudis) and to have an "agile" industry; none of which are relevant concerning UK hull production as matters stand. The RN will never get any VFM whilst BAE can give quotes safe from any meaningful competition. The money wasted is balanced by cutting manpower in the RN and ends up with the shareholders of BAE.
    Quote Originally Posted by danno View Post
    Spider, That report you listed is ,IMHO, very selfserving and is more appropriate to the UK-EEC debate than to defence strategies. The policy can have the benefits listed wrt highend technology programms but it is nigh impossible to suggest that crucial national security interests demand the retention of shipyards to ensure steelcutting and welding skills. A key recurring theme of the report was the huge value of exports ,the use of exports to shape the domestic policies of the purchasers (doesnt seem to matter to the Saudis) and to have an "agile" industry; none of which are relevant concerning UK hull production as matters stand. The RN will never get any VFM whilst BAE can give quotes safe from any meaningful competition. The money wasted is balanced by cutting manpower in the RN and ends up with the shareholders of BAE.
    Hi Danno...as I've said previously you're entitled to your opinion but that opinion seems to fly in the face of the UK Government...the Royal Navy and senior military academics.

    As I keep saying...the ability to build warships (that's hugely complex weapons of war not just bits of steel welded together) is a key facet of UK Defence policy.

    Have a look at this document please. Its a bit old (2013) and is dealing with the sovereignty issues around warship building in Scotland in the event of Scottish independence.

    http://www.publications.parliament.u.../892/89205.htm

    In it you will see set out clearly the reasons why it is highly desirable for the UK to retain a domestic warship building capability.

    The Government are not willing to gamble with the security of this Nation by out-sourcing the building of warships to foreign countries.

    RFA tankers yes...they are oil tankers...not warships.

    Now to the BAE contract.

    This all arises out of the building of the Astute Class Submarines.

    The Government realised that the UK's ability to build submarines had slipped sufficiently...and that there was significant enough skill fade in this area...that the whole Astute Class programme was put at risk.

    Recognising that there would be a delay between the completion of the QE2 Class...and the commencement of the building of T26...a contract was put in place with BAE to guarantee £200 million of work per annum...to maintain a core work force...to prevent skill fade and ensure that the Astute Class episode was not repeated.

    That is referred to in the attached document as 'The Terms of Business Agreement'.

    Interestingly, they are talking in that document (back in 2013) about the building of a new class of OPV's.

    That's the state of play...like it or not...defence...national security...as I said before they'll throw money at it...what price for the security of your Nation?

    Do the Royal Navy get best value for money out of the warships BAE are building for them? I don't know because I don't know enough about it and I have nothing to compare them with like for like.

    But what I would say is that they are commissioning warships and submarines that are the envy of Navies around the world.
    Oh Fortune...like the moon...you are changeable...

  5. #54
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    The concept is quite sensible, while the UK retains its own totally independent military defence.
    It is a matter of policy to them, they do not source any military equipment that is not built in the UK. Nothing. They will get H&K to tool up a factory in the UK to ensure they are getting their most basic of weapon made start to finish in the UK.
    You cannot compare our building of warships with the RN building of warships. We build armed ships for our navy, the UK gets a weapon system that floats for its navy. We need a ship to patrol 200 miles off our coast, with occasional trips to sunny places. It needs ships capable of operating anywhere it flies its flag worldwide, in assistance of it's many protectorates, dependencies and colonies, not forgetting it's NATO commitment.
    It is not something you can enter into lightly. The ship is a multiple of systems that must work together, with numerous redundancies. You need to keep skilled trades in this area.
    It must be able to work smoothly with every other ship in the RN fleet, in addition to any other NATO ship it may end up working with.

    The people who build these ships have been building warships for the RN since the change to ironclads was first made. The people who built our most recent ships have no such history of naval shipbuilding, and the snags experienced speak volumes about that.
    In the past RFA tankers were little more than a commercial tanker painted grey, with RAS cranes added. The Decision to get DSME to build the Tide class is in my opinion a wise one, as DSME have great experience in building tankers well, and on budget.

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  7. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by spider View Post
    Hi Danno...as I've said previously you're entitled to your opinion but that opinion seems to fly in the face of the UK Government...the Royal Navy and senior military academics.

    As I keep saying...the ability to build warships (that's hugely complex weapons of war not just bits of steel welded together) is a key facet of UK Defence policy.

    Have a look at this document please. Its a bit old (2013) and is dealing with the sovereignty issues around warship building in Scotland in the event of Scottish independence.

    http://www.publications.parliament.u.../892/89205.htm

    In it you will see set out clearly the reasons why it is highly desirable for the UK to retain a domestic warship building capability.

    The Government are not willing to gamble with the security of this Nation by out-sourcing the building of warships to foreign countries.

    RFA tankers yes...they are oil tankers...not warships.

    Now to the BAE contract.

    This all arises out of the building of the Astute Class Submarines.

    The Government realised that the UK's ability to build submarines had slipped sufficiently...and that there was significant enough skill fade in this area...that the whole Astute Class programme was put at risk.

    Recognising that there would be a delay between the completion of the QE2 Class...and the commencement of the building of T26...a contract was put in place with BAE to guarantee £200 million of work per annum...to maintain a core work force...to prevent skill fade and ensure that the Astute Class episode was not repeated.

    That is referred to in the attached document as 'The Terms of Business Agreement'.

    Interestingly, they are talking in that document (back in 2013) about the building of a new class of OPV's.

    That's the state of play...like it or not...defence...national security...as I said before they'll throw money at it...what price for the security of your Nation?

    Do the Royal Navy get best value for money out of the warships BAE are building for them? I don't know because I don't know enough about it and I have nothing to compare them with like for like.

    But what I would say is that they are commissioning warships and submarines that are the envy of Navies around the world.
    They are also probably the most expensive (hence no exports and costs being pushed up further). There is little competition within the UK for building warships for the RN (the TOBA guaranteed that as BVT and BAe set up a joint venture).

    Will that ever give value for money (when they can't even go to others for a quote?)?



    https://www.gov.uk/government/upload...ntREDACTED.pdf

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  9. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    They are also probably the most expensive (hence no exports and costs being pushed up further). There is little competition within the UK for building warships for the RN (the TOBA guaranteed that as BVT and BAe set up a joint venture).

    Will that ever give value for money (when they can't even go to others for a quote?)?
    it depends on what you want to qualify as 'value for money'...

    the ability to build what you want, when you want it, without anyone else having the ability to say 'no', or 'not yet, our rearmament programme is first in the queue' might well turn out to be vastly more valuable than the £200m we give BAE every year to keep the skills ticking over. or, to put it another way, if you think having a sovereign build capability is expensive, try not having a sovereign build capability when you need it.

    the lack of exports for UK warships is no surprise whatsoever - the only countries that either want/need the capabilities they come with, and that can afford those capabilities, and that we would consider exporting those capabilities to all have their own domestic shipbuilding industries to maintain.

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  11. #57
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    The days of the NS taking hand me downs from the RN are past

    the rivers will probably go the same way as the island and castles Classes off to Bangladesh

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  13. #58
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    Evening Dev,

    A couple of more well informed posters than I have dealt with many of the points we have been discussing.

    Quickly however I'd like to reply to your comments at #52 and #55.

    #52 first.

    1. There is not (as has already been stated above by another poster) a huge market for the type of vessels BAE have built for the RN recently. BAE have been and are building and exporting OPV's and Corvettes though, and are hoping that they may achieve export sales for T26 and the as yet un-designated GP Frigate. Will that happen...don't know we'll have to wait out on that one. I hope it does as it will be excellent news for the UK economy.

    3. Yes the new OPV's will give the RN much needed spare capacity.

    4. I don't quite understand what you're saying Dev but I am confident that the RN has the air defence capability it requires in T45 to support any amphibious operation it will ever need to mount independently.

    5. OK Thank You.

    6. Dev, I'm quite sure the design of these ships will have evolved since 1998 and will continue to, probably even as they are being built.

    7. I know they're both OPV's. But they aren't intended for the same roles. That's why the Irish Navy built more capable OPV's than the Royal Navy. NGFS for the Irish Army for example.

    8. We'll wait and see...I see this is being discussed over on the other thread. All I can say is that I hope the Irish Navy get the best equipment for the job. I hope they don't end up with the Batch 1 Rivers, because that would in my opinion be a retrograde step and they'll only find themselves having to begin the process of looking for three new ships in about 15 - 20 years time. Which will be around the same time that the P51 class will need replacing also.

    #55

    You say that there is 'little competition' in UK Shipbuilding.

    Can I please re-phrase that...there is 'no competition' when it comes to building these types of vessel for the Royal Navy.

    The skill set and capacity to deliver complex warships for the Royal Navy sits with BAE.

    And has done for quite some time.

    The UK Government recognises that and wants to preserve that capability...for the reasons outlined above.
    Oh Fortune...like the moon...you are changeable...

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  15. #59
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    River OPV Batch 1

    Quote Originally Posted by paul g View Post
    The days of the NS taking hand me downs from the RN are past

    the rivers will probably go the same way as the island and castles Classes off to Bangladesh

    The ultimate destination of the River Batch 1's is not set in stone. I would not regard them as hand me down's, our last acquisitions caused major upset within the RN Training establishment. This type of vessel in it's Batch 3 mode is capable of filling tasks currently undertaking by frigates, destroyers etc.
    Lone duties such as Falklands needed a vessel with the versatility(Flt. Deck) of HMS Clyde. I think ,given the nationhood meltdowns in the Middle east and North Africa , emerging piracy/terrorist incidents, helped the judgement to select New Build OPV's as first call units.

    The British Defence Establishment always aspired to build frontline assets such as Submarines and major equipments at home for security and skills reasons. It is a fact that due to the wind-down of heavy industry in the UK viable sources have shrunk giving a very narrow range of choices for ship, aircraft, and other heavy Defence items. The Batch 3 OPV's will aid in maintaining skills at the chosen yard.

    Naval crews are largely interchangeable between surface ships, where on-the-job-training still features for junior ratings. Specialist jobs are done by the relevant tradesmen and engineers in their own departments. In Aircraft Carriers, flight crews and technicians come on board with their Aircraft, and have to be absorbed by constant programmed training and work-up. A watchkeeping officer on an OPV could find himself as a watchkeeping officer on any other surface ship.

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  17. #60
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    our last acquisitions caused major upset within the RN Training establishment.
    as in our last acquisitions from the RN or our latest acquisitions from Appledore.?
    Just visiting

  18. #61
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    Reads like "our" as in being a member of the Royal Navy?

  19. #62
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    OUR etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    Reads like "our" as in being a member of the Royal Navy?
    It meant to be an inclusive "our". I'm very much a member of the INS through the passage of all it's surface ships from steam to diesel and at least 5 FOCNS . I followed 2 ships from paper, to assembly, to sailing order. The RN upset on OUR acquisition of the Peacocks was they had already chosen them for training purposes but their PM overruled and transferred them to INS at a beneficial cost to our exchequer.

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  21. #63
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    Regarding UK policy re shipyards, keeping a given industry subsidised is nothing new, in this instance the reason given is national security, not so long back unprofitable coalmines were kept going on the basis of energy security. Unprofitable enterprises have been kept going here for yonks. However the cost of the subsidy is depleting the RN of crews. If the choice were mine I would spend the money on L S and A B's sooner than spot welders.

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  23. #65
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    Exemptions EU Directives

    Article 346 TFEU allows for exemptions to directives, in the matter of Defence contracts to safeguard a country's security. In general all sensitive builds and research with downstream activities to maintain skills would seem to be covered.

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  25. #66
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    RIVERS TODAY.
    A WARSHIP from Portsmouth has been named the most effective ship in the Fishery Protection Squadron.

    River-class patrol ship HMS Severn clinched the accolade in recognition of the drive, enthusiasm, success and efficiency of her ship’s company. Lieutenant Commander James Reynolds, who recently took over as commanding officer, added: ‘Being awarded the Fishery Protection Squadron Effectiveness Pennant is a great honour for the ship as it recognises the highest level of operational capability within the Squadron.

    The past year saw Severn fulfilling not only her marine enforcement operations but also deploy on a seven and a half month patrol of the North Atlantic and Caribbean – a role normally reserved for a ship twice her size.By the end of her Caribbean deployment Severn had visited 29 ports in 20 countries and delivered high profile wider regional engagement through receptions and capability demonstrations, as well as 69 ships tours.

    On her return to the UK in July, Severn quickly resumed her marine enforcement work, contributing to the monitoring and enforcement of both national and European Union fisheries legislation. More recently Severn has been involved in a cross government trial with embarked Border Force officers to conduct joint boardings.

    Engineering Technician (CIS) Lee Lovick, one of Severn’s boarding team, said: ‘Being awarded the Effectiveness Pennant recognises all the hard work we have done over the last year; and while we don’t do the work just to get the Jersey Cup, it’s nice to be recognised as the best.’

    Severn will be present at the Jersey Boat Show in May this year where she will formally accept the Jersey Cup as recognition of another year leading the way in marine enforcement operations.

    Fancy doing that in a CPV anyone?
    Attachment 8132Attachment 8133

  26. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by danno View Post
    However the cost of the subsidy is depleting the RN of crews. If the choice were mine I would spend the money on L S and A B's sooner than spot welders.
    Can you back that up with any evidence Danno?

    That the cost of the TOBA is the cause of the Royal Navy's manpower problems?

    I'd argue that a large part of the problem is that in the scathing cuts of 2010 they had to let go many of their skilled engineers.

    Embarrassingly they're now having to try to entice them back...along with ex-Army and RAF engineers.

    In any case the Royal Navy has just been given permission to expand its establishment by 400 pax.

    And labelling skilled shipyard workers as 'spot welders' is a little silly.
    Oh Fortune...like the moon...you are changeable...

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  28. #68
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    Looks like some Rivers are coming on the market...https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/hms-clyde-replaced

  29. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galloglass View Post
    Looks like some Rivers are coming on the market...https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/hms-clyde-replaced
    we could buy two and include and half life refit in the deal and include the 30mm armament and FCS, also include the two miniguns plus our own pair of 20mm. The flight decks would add to logistic flexibility.

  30. #70
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    I wonder how operating in the South Atlantic has treated them?
    Well, there's good news and bad news. The bad news is that Neil will be taking over both branches, and some of you will lose your jobs. Those of you who are kept on will have to relocate to Swindon, if you wanna stay. I know, gutting. On a more positive note, the good news is, I've been promoted, so... every cloud. You're still thinking about the bad news aren't you?

  31. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmití View Post
    I wonder how operating in the South Atlantic has treated them?
    Surprisingly well apparently - I doubt you'd fancy spending winter in the southern ocean in them (or anything smaller than, say, Australia..), but they've proved they can do a job of work in the far Atlantic and not have to run for port every time the wind got a bit frisky.

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  33. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    we could buy two and include and half life refit in the deal and include the 30mm armament and FCS, also include the two miniguns plus our own pair of 20mm. The flight decks would add to logistic flexibility.
    Only 1 of the current River Class has a flight deck (HMS Clyde)

  34. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    Only 1 of the current River Class has a flight deck (HMS Clyde)
    I would still be interested in the vessel, post a refit, and update where necessary. the flight deck is a bonus, also ability to RAS etc

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  36. #74
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    There are costs and benefits to any decision regarding purchasing and production. In keeping a warship-building industry the UK is proving to have a long-term view that is obscured by short-term drawbacks. The long-term view is that not having a domestic defence industry puts you at a disadvantage right when it hurts the most and that expensive mistakes form part of a learning curve. You may save money and even gain capacity by buying abroad, but in times of international crisis, that option disappears.
    Obvious example: in 1939 Ireland suddenly realised it needed to arm itself. Money was found.
    However, by 1939, all European defence production was required by the home nations of the industries involved and nobody would sell us anything.
    If we couldn't build it, we couldn't get it. We couldn't manage anything more than scratch armoured cars and the assembly of hand grenades IIRC.
    To this day everything from the weapons used to the bullets they fire has to be imported to Ireland. That's short-sighted.

  37. #75
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    I could never understand the govts. antipathy to allowing construction of Timoney designs in Ireland....It had absolutely no relevance to Neutrality.

    The DF had actually predicted a European war breaking out in 38/39 and recommended the it should rearm....A mission to the US in 1940 secured 30,000 Springfield rifles and ammo but an offer of "any amount" of up to date US aircraft with immediate delivery was rejected by the Army which expressed a preference for British aircraft. While the British War Office would have been willing to supply much more military equipment to Ireland during the early years of the war....any such sales were vetoed personally by Churchill.....whose attitude to Ireland was "at war but skulking"
    Ironically when the German govt offered Ireland whatever it wanted of the BEF discarded equipment post Dunkirk, De Velara politely declined saying that he was confident that should it be required "German ingenuity" would find a way to deliver it.

    We did what we could from our own resources....manufacturing sea and land mines amongst other things....some of the more interesting "innovations" were in the LDF which had a company (Meath I think) armed with muzzle loading muskets obtained from a local "Big House" formerly the property of some Yeoman Militia and a unit in Dublin made up of Irish Jews who (reputedly) adorned their uniform with the Star of David.....of course we also had the Swastika laundry....(smiley)

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