Razzle dazzle – “It is very much more about supporting the unique identity of the squadron within the Royal Navy as part of their forward presence mission.”
By Rory Murphy
Overseas Patrol Squadron vessels are deployed for several years at a time, operating out of overseas bases and ports in areas key to UK interests such as the Caribbean, Falklands, Mediterranean and West Africa.
Commander David Louis, Commander of the Overseas Patrol Squadron, was quoted as saying that the Royal Navy had decided to give the River-class ships a distinct identity to recognise their extended missions.
“Dazzle has much less military value in the 21st Century although there is still value in littoral environments when viewed against the background of land,” Commander Louis explained.
“It is very much more about supporting the unique identity of the squadron within the Royal Navy as part of their forward presence mission.”
The move to dayglo has been largely welcomed in the defence journals – “Nice bit of good news, I’ve long thought we should be moving away from straight up grey for everything,” said one comment.
Another said: “I’m a bit confused! I understood that these vessels were under-armed because they were only going to be involved in policing duties!
“Why combat camouflage when they are not armed with anything more serious than a 30mm canon. They are either policing vessels or serious combat vessels, which is it?”
And another: “It’s just a snazzy new uniform. Police have those too. It’s a PR stunt. Last thing you want is a policing vessel to be camouflaged as surely the point of it is to be seen to deter illegal activities.
“Yep, blue flashing lights and a dayglo paint job … the RN is getting more like the BBC every day, no idea what its real role is!”
And, possibly verging on the politically correct: “Painting them up as ‘Q’ ships is to be saluted in these woke times, just need the L, B etc now…. 😂”