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Posted: 2/6/2006 2:00:42 PM EDT
I'm wondering what the capability of Europes military forces are. Who has the most capable military? I'm figuring its (of course) Great Britan, but besides them, who has the most powerful military force?

I am thinking in terms of them as potential adversaries of the US (per Chirac) or as allies in a conflict against Iran or even China.

And just for shits and grins - who would win in an inter European war over someting like the EU or whatever.

I'm figuring that besides England, France or Germany would be the most credible forces. I wouldn't overlook the Swedes either.

-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:38:06 PM EDT
Does Russia count?
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:41:21 PM EDT
France, hands down. What they lack in testicular fortitude is made up for by nukes and lots of things that go bang.


- BG
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:41:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Coop_K:
Does Russia count?





That's rich!
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:41:45 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Coop_K:
Does Russia count?



I was thinking mainly of Western Europe, but go ahaid and throw Russia in. Poland, Romania, and the other former Iron Curtain nations too.


-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:43:07 PM EDT
I guess nukes should be considered too, but I'm refering to conventional only.


-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 2:44:47 PM EDT
Not the Swiss...
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:10:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



Perhaps, but I would hate to have to invade.


-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:12:26 PM EDT
France and Germany would be the next two, the Swedes would be very close behind, if they weren't neutral.

At that point, you start getting into a bit of a tossup. The Italians and Greeks are in there, the Poles and Romanians are by all accounts pretty decent, if a little underequipped. Ukraine also deserves a mention, if a little undertrained. Norway has a good Army, but the air force and Navy are lacking, similarly the Dutch and Danes have good navy and air force, but are a little behind in the Army department.

NTM
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:20:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Manic_Moran:
France and Germany would be the next two, the Swedes would be very close behind, if they weren't neutral.

At that point, you start getting into a bit of a tossup. The Italians and Greeks are in there, the Poles and Romanians are by all accounts pretty decent, if a little underequipped. Ukraine also deserves a mention, if a little undertrained. Norway has a good Army, but the air force and Navy are lacking, similarly the Dutch and Danes have good navy and air force, but are a little behind in the Army department.

NTM



Brits are top notch in all services. The Scandanavian countries all have some awesome ship drivers. Most of the western Europe has pretty well trained forces, but they are all underfunded. None really have an expeditionary capability on their own - that is their biggest weakness. The Brit and French navies can do some work out of area. None have conventional forces with strategic reach and their support capabilities are well behind the US (jamming, logisitics, tanking, etc).
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:23:10 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:27:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:
Britain by a huge margin. Only Britain ahs a viable ability to project power inside and outside Europe, all the other assorted Forces are regional at best. France has at best a marginal ability to deploy out of it's home turf. Germanies armed forces are more like Armed Farces now, completely gutted and under funded.

Example; Britain can deploy and self sustain 8,500 troops in Iraq and another 5,000 going to Afghanistan complete with armour, air support and logistics.


ANdy



Andy, how much strat lift does GB have and is OIF straining that?
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:34:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:42:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 3:42:52 PM EDT by DK-Prof]

Originally Posted By Manic_Moran:
France and Germany would be the next two, the Swedes would be very close behind, if they weren't neutral.

At that point, you start getting into a bit of a tossup. The Italians and Greeks are in there, the Poles and Romanians are by all accounts pretty decent, if a little underequipped. Ukraine also deserves a mention, if a little undertrained. Norway has a good Army, but the air force and Navy are lacking, similarly the Dutch and Danes have good navy and air force, but are a little behind in the Army department.

NTM



Are you talking about things like scale and size or training and competence?


Because I honestly cannot tell if you are joking or not.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 3:43:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Nore I. But it's a safe bet they will not be kicking in our door.


Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:08:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:08:42 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:08:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bblake00:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Nore I. But it's a safe bet they will not be kicking in our door.





Damn straight.
It's why I like them so much.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:11:01 PM EDT






Now you know why the Sergents are called "Chef"!
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:11:03 PM EDT
I know the Euro have some great equipment , but the US has the BEST soldiers with the most guts period!!

Nothing can compare.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:12:34 PM EDT
Never here much about Switzerland. I personally would love to visit there. Just curious, whats up with their militery? Photos, info?
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:17:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Switzerland is one place that ain't going without a fight. Pictures the wilds of Afghanistan or Pakistan then add a modern military force with a network of prepared, modern defenses, mined bridges, tank traps. Concealed anti-armor and anti-air defenses. Awful weather for air support for all but 3 months of the year.

Then add one of the best civilian marksmanship programs (and competitions) in the western world.

And you thought an Iraqi insurgency was a pain.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:19:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Switzerland is one place that ain't going without a fight. Pictures the wilds of Afghanistan or Pakistan then add a modern military force with a network of prepared, modern defenses, mined bridges, tank traps. Concealed anti-armor and anti-air defenses. Awful weather for air support for all but 3 months of the year.

Then add one of the best civilian marksmanship programs (and competitions) in the western world.

And you thought an Iraqi insurgency was a pain.



Dang, maybe I should move there. Throw in the blondes, winter sports and bigass mountains and what else is there to want?
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:24:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Switzerland is one place that ain't going without a fight. Pictures the wilds of Afghanistan or Pakistan then add a modern military force with a network of prepared, modern defenses, mined bridges, tank traps. Concealed anti-armor and anti-air defenses. Awful weather for air support for all but 3 months of the year.

Then add one of the best civilian marksmanship programs (and competitions) in the western world.

And you thought an Iraqi insurgency was a pain.



Dang, maybe I should move there. Throw in the blondes, winter sports and bigass mountains and what else is there to want?



Nationwide concealed carry?
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:26:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:
Never here much about Switzerland. I personally would love to visit there. Just curious, whats up with their militery? Photos, info?



Conscript army. Every male have 18 weeks of conscript service at the age of 18, and then 3 weeks annualy for the next 7 years, 260 days og service all together as privates, 400 for sgt's, 600 for lt's and 900 for cptn. After serving they will be put in the reserves. They get to keep the Sig-550 at home from they are 18 until they are kickt out of the reserves due to age.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:27:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Austrian:


Nationwide concealed carry?



No.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:28:11 PM EDT

Originally Posted By julenissen:

Originally Posted By Austrian:


Nationwide concealed carry?



No.



Yes.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:29:17 PM EDT
Andy or others:

In what way are the German forces gutted? I'm not being sarcastic, just curious.

Seems to me that the G-36 is a well respected rifle. The Leopard 2A6 is one of the most respected tanks in the world. I don't know how the Marder compares anymore, but from what I saw, it compared well to its Cold War counterparts. I always thought the Spapanzer Luchs was an interesting recon vehicle, though I don't know if it was updated or even still in service.

I can't say I know much about the Luftwaffe, but the Tornado is still a good airplane. I really don't know much of anything about their Navy.


The Greeks and Italians were mentioned. Anyone know more about them? How about the Turks? I served with a brigade of Turks in Bosnia and came away with mixed feelings.

I'm also curious about peoples opinions of the Norwegians and Fins. I was impressed with them (along with the Danes and Swedes) when I was with them in Bosnia (I was assigned to both the NordPol and Turk brigades while I was there).

How about the Belgians? Or Spanish? Or Portuguese?

And what about the EU as a whole?

-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:31:42 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Originally Posted By julenissen:

Originally Posted By Austrian:


Nationwide concealed carry?



No.



Yes.



I have to move there.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:31:53 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:34:37 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:33:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By bblake00:
Not the Swiss...



I wouldn't want to try and invade Switzerland.



Switzerland is one place that ain't going without a fight. Pictures the wilds of Afghanistan or Pakistan then add a modern military force with a network of prepared, modern defenses, mined bridges, tank traps. Concealed anti-armor and anti-air defenses. Awful weather for air support for all but 3 months of the year.

Then add one of the best civilian marksmanship programs (and competitions) in the western world.

And you thought an Iraqi insurgency was a pain.



Dang, maybe I should move there. Throw in the blondes, winter sports and bigass mountains and what else is there to want?



Nationwide concealed carry?



Most Cantons allow it now. Long arms, including semi auto assault rifles can be bought without paperwork!

I spend at least two weeks in Switzerland every year... outstanding!!!!


ANdy



All but two have very liberal permit requirements. The remaining two honor the permits of 5 of the other cantons.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:34:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:35:50 PM EDT by thedoctors308]

Originally Posted By vito113:

Originally Posted By Austrian:

Nationwide concealed carry?



Most Cantons allow it now. Long arms, including semi auto assault rifles can be bought without paperwork!

I spend at least two weeks in Switzerland every year... outstanding!!!!


ANdy




Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:36:11 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:36:38 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:38:58 PM EDT
WOW Switzerland here I come baby. lol, seriously When I get a bit older it sounds like a paradise for me.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:40:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:
Long arms, including semi auto assault rifles can be bought without paperwork!



Sure? According to http://www.tmpguns.ch/tmp1b.html you need a Waffenerwerbsschein.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:40:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:
Never here much about Switzerland. I personally would love to visit there. Just curious, whats up with their militery? Photos, info?



Here is some interesting readings from wikipedia.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gun_politics_in_Switzerland
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_of_Switzerland


To reduce training and logistics costs, the Swiss military standardises on a few carefully selected types of weapons. For example, Switzerland uses only one rifle model, the FASS 90, and two types of ground-based anti-aircraft systems, including a Swiss-built and improved version of the Stinger (Swiss army knives are also issued, although they are neither red nor considered weapons). In 1993, the Swiss government ordered 34 FA-18 fighter jets from the United States of America, which were subsequently re-built in Switzerland, notably for the electronics.

Famously, members of the armed forces keep their rifles, ammunition, and uniforms in their homes for immediate mobilisation. Swiss military doctrines are arranged in peculiar ways to make this organisation effective. Switzerland claims to be able to mobilise the entire population for warfare within 12 hours. In contrast, it can take several weeks to several months for a militarily-active country such as the United States to mobilise its military force. However, in January 2006, the defence authorities declared that it would take 8 years to rebuild the army to be ready for a full war against a large enemy.

...

Swiss building codes require radiation and blast shelters to protect against bombing. There is a bed for every Swiss person in one of the many shelters. There are also hospitals and command centres in such shelters, aimed at keeping the country running in case of emergencies. Moreover, tunnels and key bridges are built with tank traps. Tunnels are also primed with demolition charges to be used against invading forces. Permanent fortifications are established in the Alps, as bases from which to retake the fertile valleys after a potential invasion. They include underground air bases which are adjacent to normal runways; the aircraft, crew and supporting material is stored in the caverns


Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:42:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:
WOW Switzerland here I come baby. lol, seriously When I get a bit older it sounds like a paradise for me.



Learn to speak the language, and apply for citizenship.
Hell, if I had to live somewhere else besides America, Switzerland would be it.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:42:54 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:46:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thedoctors308:

Originally Posted By ICEAGE:
WOW Switzerland here I come baby. lol, seriously When I get a bit older it sounds like a paradise for me.



Learn to speak the language, and apply for citizenship.
t.



No need for citizenship unless you are a citizen of either Yugoslavia, Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Albania or Algeria.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:46:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:47:34 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:48:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:49:23 PM EDT by thedoctors308]

Originally Posted By vito113:
You walk into a gunstore, say I'll buy a couple of those please, flash your permit/ID card, guy takes your money, jobs a good un!



Hell, that's pretty slick.
You know, our Founders envisioned the American military being based upon the Swiss model.
For good or for wrose, we have not been faithful to that dream.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:50:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:

Originally Posted By julenissen:

Originally Posted By vito113:
Long arms, including semi auto assault rifles can be bought without paperwork!



Sure? According to http://www.tmpguns.ch/tmp1b.html you need a Waffenerwerbsschein.



And you get the Waffenerwerbsschein, which you only need for commercal transactions, by asking and as long as you are not a nut or criminal, you get one. There is however no formal 'paperwork' that is submitted to the Police etc when you purchase firearms




Ho lee shit. When do I find a job in this paradise? No need for a visa, German is easy, and I'm not a refugee from the Balkans either.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:53:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 4:56:24 PM EDT by vito113]
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 4:58:03 PM EDT

capability of Europes military forces

If you expand to include NATO I'd put my $$ on Turkey, with Canada last.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:02:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:
Like I said, it's going to change next year, The EU made the Swiss adopt EU style laws, so the last best place to own a gun in Europe may not be soon. But I suspect the Swiss will find a way to get round that.



We have the same EU/Schengen crap regarding gun legislation here as well but the adoption didn't change much. Even if there is some restrictions to come, I guess that Switserland will still be one of the most gun-friendly states in Europe.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:03:32 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:52:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DK-Prof:
Are you talking about things like scale and size or training and competence?

Because I honestly cannot tell if you are joking or not.



Just overall 'fearsomeness'. I have no reason to doubt that Danish troops are in any way less skilled or effective than any other country. I mean, when did Centurions go out of service? Yes, the Leo2A5DKs are a definite improvement, but overall, I get the distinct impression that the lion's share of the funding goes to the other branches. You may not want to be facing Danish troops in a one-on-one fight, but you can say the same about the Irish soldiers as well. Great troops, but perhaps a little let down by the government?

NTM
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 5:56:09 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 5:57:19 PM EDT by Special-K]

Originally Posted By julenissen:

Originally Posted By vito113:
Like I said, it's going to change next year, The EU made the Swiss adopt EU style laws, so the last best place to own a gun in Europe may not be soon. But I suspect the Swiss will find a way to get round that.



We have the same EU/Schengen crap regarding gun legislation here as well but the adoption didn't change much. Even if there is some restrictions to come, I guess that Switserland will still be one of the most gun-friendly states in Europe.



Not trying to be a dick, but what do you mean by "States". Do you mean "state" as in "nation", or "state" as in a lesser part of a greater nation - as in the 50 seperate states in the United States - or the EU?

I really don't mean to be a prick, just asking.


-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 6:00:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Imperial_Pose:

capability of Europes military forces

If you expand to include NATO I'd put my $$ on Turkey, with Canada last.



What do you mean? You would bank on Turkey as the most militarily powerful nation in Europe? Or did you mean something else?

As for Canada, they're not Europe (though Turkey is), but there's got to be someone Canada can take on!

-K
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 6:01:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/6/2006 6:03:02 PM EDT by Unicorn]

Originally Posted By AMZ:
I know the Euro have some great equipment , but the US has the BEST soldiers with the most guts period!!

Nothing can compare.



Leaving aside the nationalism, this isn't entirely true. I've trained with the British Territorial Army, bascially their equivalent of our National Guard. They are as dedicated and as focused as we are. Equals in most things. I'd go to war with a Fusillier beside me with no worries about his ability. One thing that I wish they'd do, to help with their recruiting and retention is to offer a pension for retiring from the TA. Our Reserve Component retirement ins't great, but it's something, and for what is mostly a part time job, it's ok I guess. Better if people would write/call Congress to get the payments started immediately at retirement, and not at age 60 though, hint, hint, hint. ;)

ETA: Forgot to say this. I've been both active army and national guard. I know the differences in how well we are trained versus active duty. Based on that I assume (and I think it's a safe assumption) that the British TA is at the same level to their full timeers, as out NG is to our full timers.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 6:08:45 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/7/2006 3:22:03 AM EDT by KlubMarcus]

Originally Posted By AMZ: I know the Euro have some great equipment , but the US has the BEST soldiers with the most guts period!! Nothing can compare.
We also have the most important thing of all in today's battlefield, actual combat experience. So many tings could go wrong, and we've sorted most of it out for our side. The rest of 'em will have trouble shipping socks and batteries on time.

The problems gets even worse when you consider that Euroweenie militaries are full of OLD people that lack combat experience. We've got lots of "geezers" in the US military too, but they know what a wartime footing is like.
Link Posted: 2/6/2006 6:52:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Special-K:

Not trying to be a dick, but what do you mean by "States". Do you mean "state" as in "nation", or "state" as in a lesser part of a greater nation - as in the 50 seperate states in the United States - or the EU?




The first one, as in nation. Sorry, I bit clumsy use of words.



As for Canada, they're not Europe (though Turkey is)



No, they are not. Some 5% av Turkey is indeed located in Europe (occupied from Greece at some time IIRC), but Europeans generally don't consider Turkey as an European nation, partly because we don't share culture, language and religion.

OTOH, regaring military capacities, what time frame are you talking about? Most of Europe's armed forces is indeed underfunded and small, but if SHTF I'd look up the different nations economical strength and industrial capacity as well. Germany could probably enlarge it's military pretty fast if they cut the welfare state and manufactured military equipment to the boatload, Turkey can not.
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