Sunday, January 07, 2007

Full Stop. 
The Royal Navy is halting promotions for the next five years.

A serving Lieutenant Commander, equivalent to an Army major, who is currently paid £45,000 a year, described the freeze as "an absolute outrage". "People who have worked extremely hard and given their careers to the Navy, have bled for the Navy are now being rewarded like this, he said. "It is also a real kick in the teeth for those commanders who will now probably never have the chance to captain a ship."

Another officer based in Portsmouth, with 27 years service, including action in the Falklands war, was told by his commander that he should start looking for another job.

"I'm in the position of five years until retirement and after having given 27 years service it's now 'so long and thanks for all the fish'," he said.

How did things get so bad?

Lewis Page, a former Navy officer who wrote Lions, Donkeys and Dinosaurs, an acclaimed book about MoD overspending, said cuts were necessary for the 1,100 Lt Commanders in the Navy because a "staggering" 17 of the rank were based ashore for every one at sea.

I understand logistics. But this still seems excessive to me. If I were a naval officer and I could only go to sea one year out of seventeen, I'd be wondering why I signed on to the Navy, too.

Maybe they can convert some of their Navy loggies to Army, have them replace Army types in some jobs at higher level headquarters, and let the Army people go focus on killing moojies.

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