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UK Unveils Plan To “Transform” Navy By Converting Ferries Into Warships

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Originally appeared at ZeroHedge

By all accounts, Brexit has been an unmitigated disaster for the UK, largely because the Tories can’t seem to surmount internal squabbling over the finer points (i.e. the dreaded Irish backstop) of the deal negotiated by Prime Minister Theresa May.

But while the functioning of Britain’s civil service has more or less ground to a halt as bureaucrats focus on “Operation Yellowhammer” – the contingency planning for how the UK will keep its sweeping bureaucracy functioning if the UK leaves the EU next month without a deal – Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson decided to announce during a Monday speech at the Royal United Services Institute that, in addition to launching a multi-billion-pound tour of the UK’s naval might intended to strike fear into the hearts of the Chinese leadership in Beijing, the Royal Navy will also begin investing in its plans to convert ferries into warships.

UK Unveils Plan To "Transform" Navy By Converting Ferries Into Warships

Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson

In accordance with its plans, the UK will soon acquire two ferries or cargo vessels and begin the process of converting them to warships. The plan is part of a program to build out more nimble multi-purpose military seacraft (that, we imagine, could also be used to ferry emergency supplies over from the Continent if Brexit truly goes awry). The ships will be among the first assets purchased from the Royal Navy’s multi-million-pound “transformation fund”.

Williamson also revealed that his department is planning on buying off-the-shelf drones that build new “swarm fleets” that would be capable of interacting with the UK’s f-35 stealth fighters.

Here’s more on the costs of the program courtesy of the Times of London:

Two new vessels will be bought or procured under lease-hire to form the new strike-ship concept, which is set to cost tens of millions of pounds and is due to enter service within the next few years. The MoD will scout for ferries and container ships to find a pair of suitable vessels to convert.

Meanwhile, the drones are set to cost £7 million and will be ready by the end of 2019.

One of the ships will be based in the Indo-Pacific, and the other in the Mediterranean…

In a wide-ranging speech at the Royal United Services Institute in Westminster, Mr Williamson said of the new ships: “These globally deployable, multirole vessels would be able to conduct a wide range of operations, from crisis support to war fighting.”

“They would support our future commando force, our world-renowned Royal Marines – they will be forward deployed at exceptionally high readiness and able to respond at a moment’s notice, and bringing the fight from the sea to land.”

He said the two ships should be based to the east of Suez in the Indo-Pacific and one to the west of Suez in the Mediterranean, Atlantic and Baltic.

…Because nothing will signal to China and Russia that the UK means business like a couple of ferries outfitted with cannons as the UK works to expand its international presence in the Pacific and elsewhere.

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Joe Kerr

Now that Cleese has retired, Williamson steps in as Britain’s new top clown.

Jens Holm

Its allowed to ave ideas. If they are good ones, they might come through. Brittain has to renew as well as devellop its fleet being more mobile.

You can call me Al

Look up “Harry Enfield and Pals”, the “Nice but Dim”. Familiar ?. comment image


I have it on good authority that the Chinese leadership is scared shi*tless. Humbly, they ask if Her Majesty will be appeased if they just give back Hong Kong already, or will it be necessary to return to the Crown their old concessions in Peking and Guangzhou ehmm sorry, I meant Canton?


What about Shanghai as well ? :)

You can call me Al

arrghhh Mr English, u taak it, you wery strong Country, u taak it all……heer, u taak this, opium . Here, mi sister.


Lol, when I say to people that Britain once had troops based in Mainland China to control the coastal strip and navigable rivers etc, and that Britain flooded opium into China to destroy their society, with the aid of gunboats and aggressive military power, they look at me aghast with a smile and think its fake news :) I may have told you before of an old friend of mine, long deceased, who was stationed in Shanghai as a British soldier in the early 1920’s

And when I say that HSBC ( Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation) banks fortunes were built on trade from China and illegal imports of opium into China and elsewhere in the world, many people just smile with disbelief.

After they look at real facts and learn the true history of Empire, they are chastened, to say the least :)

Can your sister look after horses ? My last groom ‘Mi Kan Ryde’ has left to be with her boyfriend, Wonecan Lye.

You can call me Al

hehehe – the bottom sentence.


Gavin the gimp Williamson strikes again.

Jens Holm

You too.

Mr Bray

Why is it that people can no longer read between the lines and recognise some serious public disclosure when it is gifted to them?

Are you/we all really so dumbed down and ignorant that we can no longer recognise a clear and uncoded message – a message so simple and clear it only requires 2+2 to be put together?

Can you not see the warnings that have been hidden in plain sight contained within this story (and gifted to you all by someone feeding the press, someone who is clearly very skilled in releasing highly sensitive and strategic information in a way that does not actually break any laws or contracts)?

Are you/we all so ignorant of World history that we forget how ‘civillian’ vessels have been used in every major conflict or war throughout history – especially in the last century when western governments requisitioned all mannner of civillian vessals for operations as simple as surveilance up to the carrying of 100’000’s of troops?

Have you all forgotten how the UK has a long history of converting civillian vessels just prior to a major war – such as WW1 when cruise-liners were converted into either troop ships and hospital ships, and cargo vessels were converted into military logistics vessels – same and more so with WW2 and the advent of the British ‘Q Ship’ and anti-U Boat ‘fishing trawler’?

Have you all forgotten how the UK requisitioned Civillian ships for the Falklands war – and warned Argentina with nuclear attack (yes they did – look it up) if they even dared approach them – sinking the Battleship ‘Belgrano’ with many 1000’s on board with a torpedo from a British nuclear submarine as a warning and display of force (even though it obeyed the British and did not sial anywhere near British shipping)?

Have you all forgotten why Civillian ships are requisitioned and adapted to military service in the first place (clue – it is because a major war is anticipated and there is not time to build dedicated troop carriers or LANDING CRAFT so existing vessels that will serve as LANDING CRAFT will be modified and adapted instead)?

Whoever ‘leaked’ this story to the press was giving a warning to those with the intellect to see it – that the British are preparing for a war and it is a war coming sooner rather than later otherwise requisioning and adapting civillian vessels would not be required – as per the Falklands war.

Whatever the actually facts and truth of this development and story, someone has gone to considerable efforts to ‘leak’ to the public some very important information in a very intelligent way, asking only that they put 2+2 together to see a bigger picture emerging (which I am embarresed to see has gone over the heads of otherwise intelligent people – again).

Mr Bray

Oh, and one more point – how many of you ‘experts’ laughing at this story picked up on this part of the article:

“Williamson also revealed that his department is planning on buying

off-the-shelf drones that build new ‘swarm fleets’ that would be capable

of interacting with the UK’s f-35 stealth fighters”

WELL? Do you not recognise the significance of this in the light of Pariot and S400 deployment around the Black Sea?

I will spell it out for you – a week or two ago it was publically disclosed (and laughed at again) that both the US and Russia are going back to Cold War era tactics for air-defence – namely nuclear air-burst to destroy ‘SWARM’ attacks that would otherwise overwhelm conventional anti-aircraft weapons systems.

Note to armchair experts – BOTH the US Patriot and Russian S400 are nuclear capable and BOTH have nuclear air-burst capability to defeat ‘swarm’ attacks – look it up somewhere other than Wikipidia (or the first page of google) which is about as far as most experts look these days.

The technology of nuclear-anti-aircraft missiles has been around since the late 1950’s, and some people may actually wish to start their research with Wikipedia if they feel the urge to laugh at this.

Mr Bray

This is the 3rd time I have tried to post this and it keeps
getting pulled as ‘Spam’ by Disqus.

THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT EXTRACT from a longer extract taken from the
Journal called ‘The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientist’

Title: Russian nuclear forces 2018

Autors: Hans M. Kristensen & Robert S. Norris

(Extract from Pages 185-195 | Published online: 30 Apr 2018):


We estimate that Russia has a little over 1,800 non-strategic nuclear

warheads assigned for delivery by air, naval, ground, and various

defensive forces. This estimate, and the categories of Russian weapons we
have been

describing in the Nuclear Notebook for years, were confirmed by the

Nuclear Posture Review, which stated:

“Russia is modernizing an active stockpile of up to 2,000 non-strategic

weapons, including those employable by ships, planes, and ground forces.

These include air-to-surface missiles, short range ballistic missiles,

gravity bombs, and depth charges for medium-range bombers, tactical

bombers, and naval aviation, as well as anti-ship, anti-submarine, and

ANTI-AIRCRAFT MISSILES, and torpedoes for surface ships and submarines, a

nuclear ground-launched cruise missile in violation of the 1987 INF

Treaty, and Moscow’s antiballistic missile system”

The Nuclear Posture Review also says:

“Russia possesses significant advantages in its nuclear weapons production

capacity and in non-strategic nuclear forces over the U.S. and allies.

It is also building a large, diverse, and modern set of non-strategic

systems that are dual-capable (may be armed with nuclear or conventional


Most of the non-strategic weapon systems are dual-capable, which means not

platforms may be assigned nuclear missions, and not all operations are


As far as we can ascertain, the biggest user of non-strategic nuclear

weapons in the Russian military is the navy, which we estimate has an

inventory of approximately 810 warheads for use by land-attack cruise

missiles, anti-ship cruise missiles, anti-submarine rockets, ANTI-AIRCRAFT
MISSILES, torpedoes, and depth charges. These weapons may be used by
submarines, aircraft carriers, cruisers, destroyers, frigates, corvettes, and
naval aircraft.

The Nuclear Posture Review also confirmed that Russia continues to use

nuclear warheads in its air- and missile-defense forces. The

missile-defense forces concern the Gazelle interceptor, but the Nuclear

Posture Review did not identify which air-defense system has


It may be the S-300 air-defense system, which may have

dual-capable SA-10/20 interceptors, but we do not know how many are

assigned nuclear warheads. The US Defense Intelligence Agency said in

its March 2018 Worldwide Threat Assessment that “Russia may also have

warheads for surface-to-air and other aerospace defense missile systems”

The S-300 is gradually being replaced by the S-400 system with SA-21

interceptors, which have not yet been identified as dual-capable, however an

upgrade of the nuclear-tipped A-135 anti-ballistic missile defense

system around Moscow is said to be underway.

Jens Holm

Who says anything about nukes in this. I see no nuclear wars today.

Mr Bray

With respect, I refer you to the following paragraph:

“Williamson also revealed that his department is planning on buying

off-the-shelf drones that build new ‘swarm fleets’ that would be capable

of interacting with the UK’s f-35 stealth fighters”

I then invite you to consider the recent test France undertook with a fighter jet, the recent tests the US and Israel have undertaken with fighter jets and drones, the modernisation of small nuclear warheads by all nations who possess nuclear arms, and again, with respect, I refer you to the British, US, and Russian deployments and actions in locations such as Syria, Ukraine, and now Venezuala with weapon systems that have ‘dual capability’.

I then invite you to think about the deployment of US Patriot and Russian S300 and S400 systems and invite you to read the article I have referenced and linked to in this comment section – copied again here: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00963402.2018.1462912

I then invite you to think about modern nuclear conflict and defence from ‘swarm attacks’ from drones and fighter aircraft carrying compact nuclear weapons.

This story has clearly gone over the heads of so many people in the alt-media community and the general public alike that I have little hope that a nuclear confrontation between elements of NATO and Russia can now be avoided.

I began commenting on Southfront because I believed there were some very deep thinkers on here. Perhaps there are, but it is clear that I waste my time commenting under this article.

I will continue to support Southfront, but from this day forth shall avoid the comment section – lest I too should be infected with ignorance and laugh away global military preparations for a global conflict involving ‘small’ nuclear weapons.

Concrete Mike

Feel free to continue posting. Post it not for others..post it for yourself as an expression your freedom.

I found your comments relevant and interesting, modern nuclear weapons are not what we have been collectively programmed to beleive. Any knowledge you have , for the good of us all, share it please.

If you know the truth its impossible to follow empire diktats.

Just because we ar quiet does not mean we do not exist.

Have a look at this.

Your thoughts on this peice would be appreciated.
I was a little all over the place…funny translation perhaps. Maybe you know russian and can help this old frenchman understand russia syntaxe…because its seems like nonsense sometimes.


Well said.
I remember well the Argentine Xocet missile sinking of the Atlantic Conveyor, during the falklands War.

Cruise liners such as the QE2 were designed to be adapted for war and the UK MOD pays the cost of this. This is how the QE2 was converted for war in a very shot time. A helicopter deck was constructed over the swimming pool in my memory is correct.

Jens Holm

Too many fools.

I allow me to add, that USA had no tranport/cargo fleet when they were asked to help GB and Russia at all at the beginning of WW2.

If if they have had troops, they by that could not send soldiers, equipment and fuel.

You can call me Al

Te Japanese converted many civilian ships; mainly tankers I believe.

Mark Roberts

All the major militaries of the world have been preparing for WW3 for a few years now. The world’s psychopathic genocidal elite want a WW3 and it is coming. Vladimir Putin has said the west is sleep walking towards WW3. However, we still must maintain a sense of humour and find it anywhere we can or we’d go nuts or get depressed.


What a joke.

Jens Holm

On paper its a good idea making ferries into watships. Many of them already has good sanitary facilities and beds. Many has a cardeck or 2 and therefore can carrie heavy equipment as well as food.

Lets see. Rebuilding ships often are very expensive and You dont get 100%. But as an important supplement i could be realistic.

You can call me Al

comment image


>>in addition to launching a multi-billion-pound tour of the UK’s naval might intended to strike fear into the hearts of the Chinese leadership in Beijing,<<

Pray tell, once the UK leaves the EU and has to renegotiate trade deals with basically EVERYONE, how on Earth is pissing of China going to net the UK a better trade deal then it already got via the EU? Is this a classic case of
Step 1: Leave EU
Step 2: Piss off China, the EU, Russia
Step 3: ????????
Step 4: Profit!!!

Jim Prendergast

Ferry on the Mersey will be a Military Imperative. Carry on.

Brother Thomas

Ferries into warships and pats of butter into artillary shells.

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