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  1. #2451
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    Cheers for that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bravo20 View Post
    ...You would be waiting a long time for the DOD to fight for a bigger budget.
    Why is this? How has that mindset developed within the DOD - is just within the DOD or within the whole civil service, is it political directive that politicians hide behind?

  2. #2452
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    Quote Originally Posted by ropebag View Post
    Cheers for that.

    Why is this? How has that mindset developed within the DOD - is just within the DOD or within the whole civil service, is it political directive that politicians hide behind?
    To me (and I'm open to correction) it's been a feature of the DOD since the foundation of the state, with spending on defence being seen as something to be prevented, from the state of play before WW2 through to UN Deployments to today, it seems to always be as little as possible and as limited as possible. It's certainly not a wide spread feature of the civil service (looks at the never ending beast that is Health), just seems to be Defence that is stuck with this mindset and due to public/political apathy on the subject they get away with it.

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  4. #2453
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    Quote Originally Posted by ropebag View Post
    Cheers for that.



    Why is this? How has that mindset developed within the DOD - is just within the DOD or within the whole civil service, is it political directive that politicians hide behind?
    Senior civil servants, traditionally, have been rewarded for efficiency. Many equate working under budget to efficiency. The better ones see achieving all the department objectives within, or over budget as success. Sadly the DoD have decided that consistently returning a surplus to the exchequer is to be considered efficient use of funds, and thus, success. Their epartment roles say little about ensuring the Defence Forces are able to achieve their set objectives. In 2016, Program for Government outlined the following goals for the DoD.
    • Employment support scheme
    • Double Female participation in Defence forces
    • OEP will examine creation of a Rapid Response unit, led by Dept of Environment to deal with severe weather incidents
    • Implement white paper on defence (this is the order in which goals were set)
    • Provide for move from 8 to 9 ship Navy, More armoured & Logistic vehicles Modernise Athlone (so the locals don't think its about to close) and get new aircraft(to replace old ones) and building in Baldonnel.
    • Ensure 9500 PDF and maintain full strength reserve. (they have failed miserably here)
    • Support for Veterans (?)
    • Maintain Reserve at 4000 and maximise use of them and their skills (50% achieved here)
    • Address the gap in female participation (Rose of Tralee)-Didn't we cover that already on point 2?
    • Support and Develop Civil Defence (if anything this has taken a large step backwards lately)
    • Develop new institute for Peace Support and Leadership training(what was wrong with the old one?)
    • Encourage partnerships between the Defence Forces and Private enterprise. (Dramatic failure there, in IMERC)
    • Award a 1916 medal. (Thats it, a medal for turning up on the centenary).
    • Work with NI Executive to secure funding for a new Sail Training vessel.(Unfortunately there has been no NI executive since this plan was devised)
    • Expand EAS (Led by Dept of Health)
    • Complete structural review of Decision Making accross security and defence (Led by Dept of Justice & Equality)


    The Dept roles and responsibilities has lots of vague assertions about supporting the delivery of a defence capability. In effect, while the DF control the day to day running of the DF, the purse strings are firmly controlled by the DoD.

    The primary role of the Department of Defence is to support the Minister as head of the Department and in particular to provide policy advice and support on Defence matters, including assistance with policy formulation and the implementation of policy as directed by the Minister.
    The civil element also has a number of specific roles which include the management of legal, regulatory and litigation policy and related matters on behalf of the Minister; the management of the Department's human resources and industrial relations and the coordination of the delivery of security, emergency and community services by the Defence Forces. In addition, the civil element provides liaison between the Defence Forces and other Government Departments, public authorities, the EU and public representatives. Policy in respect of overseas operations, in furtherance of Ireland's commitments in the area of international security and peacekeeping, is also coordinated by the civil element which, jointly with the military, has an important strategic responsibility in relation to emergency planning coordination and oversight.
    Civil servants discharge financial managements and audit functions in connection with the Secretary General's role as Accounting Officer and provide administrative support services to the Defence Forces, including pay administration, the management of major procurement and infrastructural programmes and the management of lands used by the military. There is a significant degree of delegation of financial authority to the Defence Forces, particularly in the area of the procurement of goods and services.
    Finally, the civil element is responsible for the administration and granting of military pensions and has a range of responsibilities in relation to Civil Defence and the Irish Red Cross Society.
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  6. #2454
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky42 View Post
    To me (and I'm open to correction) it's been a feature of the DOD since the foundation of the state, with spending on defence being seen as something to be prevented, from the state of play before WW2 through to UN Deployments to today, it seems to always be as little as possible and as limited as possible. It's certainly not a wide spread feature of the civil service (looks at the never ending beast that is Health), just seems to be Defence that is stuck with this mindset and due to public/political apathy on the subject they get away with it.
    Health is in effect two entities.
    The Dept of Health, and the HSE. The HSE used to be the provincial health boards. When they merged into the HSE around 2002, there was no replacement of the organisational structure, and the body remained admin heavy.
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  8. #2455
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Health is in effect two entities.
    The Dept of Health, and the HSE. The HSE used to be the provincial health boards. When they merged into the HSE around 2002, there was no replacement of the organisational structure, and the body remained admin heavy.
    True, however either way it's a budget beast that consumes as much as it can get and just turn around for more, I mean how many "top up" budgets have been equal to a chunk of the entire DF budget?

  9. #2456
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    And some would reduce the defence budget further, to feed this insatiable beast that is Health.
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  11. #2457
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    And some would reduce the defence budget further, to feed this insatiable beast that is Health.
    Course they would, without realising that Health would blow that in weeks at best given how small it actually is.

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  13. #2458
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky42 View Post
    True, however either way it's a budget beast that consumes as much as it can get and just turn around for more, I mean how many "top up" budgets have been equal to a chunk of the entire DF budget?
    Health is a very political beast and very parish pump driven, defence is a nasty must have that soaks up money that could be a vote getter else where. The DF and their families fit ten times into the Health Service staff.... the customer base of the health service is countless, while that of Defence is only notional.

    So the money goes with the vote....

    Agree or disagree with the concept...this is where the money goes.. and always has done, it won't change but the DoD must ring fence its own funding and prevent it being shared else where. Projects like the building of a three vessel class ensured this , there was no opt out once the spend had begun.

    One of our biggest failings is a failure to separate pensions and wages and welfare from capital projects, they should be two budgets ...even in health and nothing should encroach on either.
    Time for another break I think......

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  15. #2459
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    Quote Originally Posted by hptmurphy View Post
    Health is a very political beast and very parish pump driven, defence is a nasty must have that soaks up money that could be a vote getter else where. The DF and their families fit ten times into the Health Service staff.... the customer base of the health service is countless, while that of Defence is only notional.

    So the money goes with the vote....

    Agree or disagree with the concept...this is where the money goes.. and always has done, it won't change but the DoD must ring fence its own funding and prevent it being shared else where. Projects like the building of a three vessel class ensured this , there was no opt out once the spend had begun.

    One of our biggest failings is a failure to separate pensions and wages and welfare from capital projects, they should be two budgets ...even in health and nothing should encroach on either.
    Due to a change in political philosophy, government has shed most of it's direct controls on Departments running the social and commercial fabric of the State,and has become a customer for services supplied by quangos or private organisations. Defence is one of a few with total control and spending is fitted with brakes and return springs . No pay increases since 2008 and continuing FEMPI on pensions since 2011. Capital spending is regarded as a source of pandering to those wishing to become part of Defence Alliances and upsetting the neutralists and Clare and Mick.
    Last edited by ancientmariner; 20th May 2019 at 08:41.

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  17. #2460
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    Necrosis in our state organs is, sadly, nothing new. Much of it derives form the fundamentally conservative nature of the surviving members of our revolutionary generation and a strong bias among our public administrators for the replacement of a disconnected government by fiat from Westminster with a slightly less disconnected government by fiat from Kildare Street.

    The phenomenal rise of the Irish economy has been allowed to devolve into a materialist, even objectivist society. All the while our political class have hidden behind a laissez-faire economic philisophy as an excuse not to develop the necessary new policy competencies our society requires. An economic philosophy, as it turned out, they barely understood.

    A much more communitarian approach to the common good, along the Nordic Model, is urgently required.

    A society that respects only money will soon demand money as the only means, not only of material sustenance, but of social respect.

    A place to begin would be the reinstatement of the national agreement process. The state should agree to trade comprehensive reform of housing and accommodation policy, in the interests of society and the economy, against rising income demands. This would not be dissimilar to the way that reform of the tax system was traded for similar national objectives in the past.

    Essential state employees, particularly in areas where recruitment is proving most difficult, should have limited preferential access to accommodation.

    The NS could, with appropriate government support, do more to address the housing needs of it's men and women.

    That pay and conditions among DF personnel require urgent consideration goes, I would think, without saying.

    Unfortunately, what is required is, essentially, a top down government response. National policy is what had brought us to this situation, and realistically, only national policy can address it.

    Apologies to the mods in advance if I've drifted somewhat from the thread topic. Glad to continue this topic elsewhere, if someone can direct me to an appropriate thread.
    Diplomacy is a continuation of war by other means - Zhou Enlai

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  19. #2461
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Usual Suspect View Post
    N
    The phenomenal rise of the Irish economy has been allowed to devolve into a materialist, even objectivist society. All the while our political class have hidden behind a laissez-faire economic philisophy as an excuse not to develop the necessary new policy competencies our society requires. An economic philosophy, as it turned out, they barely understood.

    A much more communitarian approach to the common good, along the Nordic Model, is urgently required.

    A society that respects only money will soon demand money as the only means, not only of material sustenance, but of social respect.

    A place to begin would be the reinstatement of the national agreement process. The state should agree to trade comprehensive reform of housing and accommodation policy, in the interests of society and the economy, against rising income demands. This would not be dissimilar to the way that reform of the tax system was traded for similar national objectives in the past.

    Essential state employees, particularly in areas where recruitment is proving most difficult, should have limited preferential access to accommodation.

    The NS could, with appropriate government support, do more to address the housing needs of it's men and women.

    That pay and conditions among DF personnel require urgent consideration goes, I would think, without saying.

    Unfortunately, what is required is, essentially, a top down government response. National policy is what had brought us to this situation, and realistically, only national policy can address it.

    Apologies to the mods in advance if I've drifted somewhat from the thread topic. Glad to continue this topic elsewhere, if someone can direct me to an appropriate thread.
    A good an accurate pen picture of where we are at and unfortunately where we are still going .

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  21. #2462
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Usual Suspect View Post
    Necrosis in our state organs is, sadly, nothing new. Much of it derives form the fundamentally conservative nature of the surviving members of our revolutionary generation and a strong bias among our public administrators for the replacement of a disconnected government by fiat from Westminster with a slightly less disconnected government by fiat from Kildare Street.

    The phenomenal rise of the Irish economy has been allowed to devolve into a materialist, even objectivist society. All the while our political class have hidden behind a laissez-faire economic philisophy as an excuse not to develop the necessary new policy competencies our society requires. An economic philosophy, as it turned out, they barely understood.

    A much more communitarian approach to the common good, along the Nordic Model, is urgently required.

    A society that respects only money will soon demand money as the only means, not only of material sustenance, but of social respect.

    A place to begin would be the reinstatement of the national agreement process. The state should agree to trade comprehensive reform of housing and accommodation policy, in the interests of society and the economy, against rising income demands. This would not be dissimilar to the way that reform of the tax system was traded for similar national objectives in the past.

    Essential state employees, particularly in areas where recruitment is proving most difficult, should have limited preferential access to accommodation.

    The NS could, with appropriate government support, do more to address the housing needs of it's men and women.

    That pay and conditions among DF personnel require urgent consideration goes, I would think, without saying.

    Unfortunately, what is required is, essentially, a top down government response. National policy is what had brought us to this situation, and realistically, only national policy can address it.

    Apologies to the mods in advance if I've drifted somewhat from the thread topic. Glad to continue this topic elsewhere, if someone can direct me to an appropriate thread.
    What else is to be expected when the government of the last 3 decades has either been the party of teachers and farmers, or the party of Landlords and publicans. A materialist society is inevitable when only those with the most nice things get to be in power, making all the decisions. You'll struggle to see anyone in government in recent history that came from a minimum or even living wage job.
    Anyone going for Election for MEP is only there to expand their own portfolio, make more contacts overseas for their post political career employment. The exceptions that get elected soon become disillusioned and move on. With the current Ireland South MEPs I would struggle to name one useful thing any of them have achieved since being elected. Ni Riada spent most of her time failing to be elected President of Ireland. Crowley was too ill to attend for the majority and should have stood aside at least 3 years ago. Clueless has become expert at saying nothing for the duration, and her party colleague forgets he is an MEP, not a TD.
    Anyone going for Election for TD is doing so to enhance their social standing, by securing the best goodies for their voters. Not always in the best interests of the state. Kehoe is a prime example. If he could move the NS to Rosslare he would. Otherwise he couldn't give a toss about them.
    Anyone going for election for Councillor is doing so with their local community best interests at heart, but only those which they agree with, rather than the greater good.
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  23. #2463
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    On the topic of the EPV/Mini JSS, and the utility of a steel beach specifically, I believe we may have missed a relevant perspective.

    Political leadership at the DFA is extremely keen on the expansion of the role of the Hansa into foreign and international security policy. There are many motivations behind this, but in the most general terms; there is a determination to woo and be wooed by the Swedes and Finns as essential swing votes within the Hansa, and therefore within the wider EU; and that all three nations having essentially anti-imperialist and non-aligned histories, the Swedes and Finns are the most acceptable of all potential future security partners to the Irish public.

    We are not, in the conceivable future, going to arrive at a Nordic BG exercise with the Dixmude, a tank battallion, and a squadron of Rafales in tow. Nor need we believe that we should.

    What we can do is demonstrate our commitment to be at least as serious a contributor to international humanitarianism and security as we have been in the past. We should aim to jointly establish a UN school for amphibious operations (in support of peace keeping and peace enforcement), with the Swedes and Finns, in Gotland.

    In this context, the DFA in consultation with the Swedes and the Finns, should be involved in determining the future utility of a steel beach for the EPV. And if finding in favour, should be expected to argue for such, so as to overcome any residual reticence at the DoD and DPER.

    A mutual tri-nation charm offensive would, likely, be very useful..

    Quote Originally Posted by WhingeNot View Post
    ..to give the whole country, including politicians and the public, a taste of what is being contemplated
    For reference: The Swedes were considering a similar vessel or two a decade ago, but the project does not appear to have progressed. That would seem to be an appropriate point from which to start the conversation.

    Much else of what we have to offer, in any long term deepening of the relationship, is all the more appealing given the UK's trend towards distraction from, or even ambivalence regarding, European security structures.

    We enjoy unencumbered access by air and sea to, and across, the North Atlantic.
    Unparalleled political and cultural intelligence (among non-aligned nations) across the Anglo-sphere; and a demonstrated ability to translate that intelligence into political influence when necessary.
    The demonstrated commitment of our State, through our defence forces, to the natural, moral, and pragmatic good. Often through exceptional, and costly, UN service.
    The capacity, and intent, to develop elements of a blue-water navy.
    Certain other intelligence capabilities, unenumerated here in deference to the board mods posting guidelines.
    Last edited by The Usual Suspect; 21st May 2019 at 01:41. Reason: Updated link
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    Quote Originally Posted by ancientmariner View Post
    Don't load containers through stern apertures, moving to and from assigned positions would be technically complex.


    Apertures are for deployment of sensor/ROV umbilicals through stern. Equipment, containerised or not, is delivered to vehicle deck by usual means.
    Diplomacy is a continuation of war by other means - Zhou Enlai

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  26. #2465
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    Gotland may not be such a place given the Swedes are remilitarising it due to concerns over Russian actions, not sure they'd want the complexity of a multinational training installation on top of that?

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    .. or it could be exactly the right place. Actively neutral states often seek added complexity to deter and dissuade potential agresors by eroding the predictability of consequences.

    In any case; it's the former home of the Swedish amphibious operations training facility.

    It's certainly worth beginning a conversation about.
    Last edited by The Usual Suspect; 21st May 2019 at 04:11. Reason: Grammar, clarity
    Diplomacy is a continuation of war by other means - Zhou Enlai

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  29. #2467
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    Anyone going for election for Councillor is doing so with their local community best interests at heart, but only those which they agree with, rather than the greater good.
    Given that have an expense sheet averaging about 70k each p.a. ,, I'd contest that they have anyones interests other than their own at heart
    Time for another break I think......

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  31. #2468
    Commander in Chief hptmurphy's Avatar
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    Bear with me in my moment of madness and the example I'll offer may not be ideal but the concept is fine. The RFA did it and more recently the Canadians did it. Buy an existing vessel and modify ? convert it to what you need rather than trying to re invent the wheel

    https://navalfocus.wordpress.com/201...ds-the-future/

    Need not be on this size but it is an option if you don't get into the full Landing Dock type ship
    Last edited by hptmurphy; 23rd May 2019 at 11:14.
    Time for another break I think......

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  33. #2469
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    And NZ
    http://navy.mil.nz/mtf/manawanui/default.htm

    Reported total cost NZ$ 103m (€60m) for an already 15 year old vessel

    Conversion only took 24 days so not a lot was involved
    Last edited by DeV; 23rd May 2019 at 15:09.

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  35. #2470
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    Quote Originally Posted by hptmurphy View Post
    Bear with me in my moment of madness and the example I'll offer may not be ideal but the concept is fine. The RFA did it and more recently the Canadians did it. Buy an existing vessel and modify ? convert it to what you need rather than trying to re invent the wheel

    https://navalfocus.wordpress.com/201...ds-the-future/

    Need not be on this size but it is an option if you don't get into the full Landing Dock type ship
    Might not be a cheap option; Project Resolve the Canadian conversion of the tanker MS Asterix to act as an interim AOR (until their new even more wildly expensive versions of the Berlin class arrive) is C$700m, €465m. To put that into comparison the Dutch paid €363m for the JSS Karel Doorman and the Norwegians €135m for the AOR HNoMS Maud.

    Sometimes it is faster and cheaper to build new rather than to convert, not always but most times.

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    As ever, you've got to decide what you want first - is it a 5,000 ton OPV with room for ten TEU and a party pack of Haribo, or a 20,000 ton logistics ship with a GPMG and a loudhailer - or some unholy cut and shut abortion of a ginger stepchild that tries to do both and does neither?

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  39. #2472
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    Quote Originally Posted by ropebag View Post
    As ever, you've got to decide what you want first - is it a 5,000 ton OPV with room for ten TEU and a party pack of Haribo, or a 20,000 ton logistics ship with a GPMG and a loudhailer - or some unholy cut and shut abortion of a ginger stepchild that tries to do both and does neither?
    Is that you're opinion of the Vard design?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky42 View Post
    Is that you're opinion of the Vard design?
    Depends.

    If it's a logs/amphib vessel operating on purely Irish tasks then it's a capable vessel (but probably shit for chasing fishing boats) but if it's something to be used on a European level, whether HADR or defence/security, then it's pretty woeful as as a logistics ship (third of the lane metres of a Bay Class, a fifth of the LM of a Point Class), so (for a task force commander) simply not worth the effort required to protect it.

    A task force commander has a finite number of escorts - and of course their capabilities will be variable - that will give him/her a finite number of ships he can protect. He's simply not going to chose to take a ship (all other things being equal), that has 400+ LM and 300 bodies over a ship with 1000+ LM and 700 bodies.

    It's also worth noting that the Vard ship has a very light armament - that could undoubtedly be significantly uprated, and I'd being looking at CWIS in its many versions for that - but its price would go up sharply when you put a pair of Phalanx, jamming gear, decoys, a pair of RWS 30mm, and of course a helicopter. Something like an EC-135 would be quite useful as a reece/communication tool, but without one the ship, acting on its own, would be significantly inhibited.

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  42. #2474
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeV View Post
    And NZ
    http://navy.mil.nz/mtf/manawanui/default.htm

    Reported total cost NZ$ 103m (€60m) for an already 15 year old vessel

    Conversion only took 24 days so not a lot was involved
    Would jump at 2 suitable ETVs or a Hydrographic Vessel, if urgently required, on this basis.

    Believe situation regarding vessel under direct discussion is more complicated.

    For a start, it's primary design missions are expeditionary/international engagement.

    Design must take account of the needs/requirements of most likely collaborators to maximise return on scarce state investment.
    Last edited by The Usual Suspect; 24th May 2019 at 00:42. Reason: ETV link added
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Usual Suspect;
    Would jump at 2 suitable [URL="http://forum.irishmilitaryonline.com/showthread.php?6663-Emergency-towing-vessel&p=467514&viewfull=1#post467514"
    ETV[/URL]s or a Hydrographic Vessel, if urgently required, on this basis.

    Believe situation regarding vessel under direct discussion is more complicated.

    For a start, it's primary design missions are expeditionary/international engagement.

    Design must take account of the needs/requirements of most likely collaborators to maximise return on scarce state investment.
    Most of it's work would have to be by it's remote systems, as a draft of 6 + meters would keep it out of some Irish ports and possibly restrict it's home porting. It is possible that it could also fulfill the role of an Emergency towing vessel if the bollard pull could reach the required standard. She reminds me of the ILC's old vessel Grey SEAL on which I served for a year or so post retirement.

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