Shropshire Star

Peter Rhodes on trans kids, same-sex blessings and sailing into a crisis

Not all my predictions come true but the forecast from November 15 is standing up well. The one about not taking your eyes off Iceland.

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The Royal Navy

Anyone else a tad worried about the cream of the Royal Navy being sailed into the Red Sea to confront the Houthi guerillas who are threatening one of the world's most important shipping lanes? Especially when the cream in question is Britain's Type 45 destroyer which is charitably described as “troubled.” As even the forces-friendly Daily Telegraph puts it: “The T45s have a massive flaw which results in them occasionally suffering a total loss of all electrical power and propulsion.” So no worries there, then.

It's just that some of us recall the great rush of national pride when our destroyers, including the doomed Type 42 HMS Sheffield, set off for the Falkland Islands in 1982. The Task Force simply bristled with missiles, more missiles and anti-missile missiles. It simply never occurred to us that the Argies might have even better missiles. And then one night Sheffield was gone.