Well it’s 2015 and yet it feels more like 1985 at times with RAF fighters chasing Tu-95 “Bears” up the English Channel and the Royal Navy hunting submarines in the North Sea. Excluding a certain wall in the German capital one could be forgiven for thinking the Cold War never ended. Add to this the threat of an increasingly bold terrorist network and the world is looking more unfriendly than ever.
So with that frightening realization in mind welcome to “Defence of the Realm’s” SITREP for February 2015. For those of you who are new followers and have never seen one of these posts before I would like to welcome you and thank you for giving the site a look. Basically, this is my opportunity to let you you know the direction the site is taking. It is also your opportunity to let me know your thoughts on the site in general as well as to offer your own suggestions/input in to any of the projects that are on the horizon.
So let me begin by thanking everyone who has viewed/commented/liked/reblogged any of the site’s articles this month. I am not trying to boast when I say that between January 1st and February 10th the site has garnered the same number of hits as the first four months combined and that’s down to you guys taking some of your time to read the posts. Its both flattering and encouraging. You may have noticed for the last week or so the site has gone quiet and this was due to illness in the family as opposed to a lack of interest on my part. I had been planning and researching my Night Fighter Mosquito article before things went a little crazy at home and I finally got chance to crack on with it this week. I am a dad first; everything else second.
So here are just a few of the ideas floating around my brain for the next month as well as well as some updates on previous projects I have been planning;
- The aircraft comparison between the Canberra and the Il-28 has been my most successful so far and it got a lot of people talking on Facebook as well as the site. I found this interesting because it was the first one not to be about which two fighters were better in a dogfight. I plan to expand further the types of aircraft compared to include transport types as well. I will admit I have been a bit biased to comparing aircraft to Russian designs (I am a child of the original Cold War after all) but recently I have been looking in to expanding in to comparing British hardware to other nations such as France and Russia. (Please feel free to make any suggestions in the comments box below).
- Another very popular article from the previous month was Are the Japanese serious about selling the RAF Kawasaki P-1s? and I have been told that this was because it offered a debate as opposed to simply providing hard facts. I have considered writing more debate-style articles in the past and have shied away from them because there is a risk to them. By their nature these articles try to convince a person of one belief or another and the opinion of the author is slave to his/her research. If I do write more debate-like articles I will certainly try to be as objective as possible.
- The long awaited tank comparison series is proving much harder than I ever thought it would be. The problem is finding complete and reliable sources for information. It would be pointless for me to write a comparison whereby I have complete data on the armour of one tank and incomplete data on the other. This would lead to a potentially inaccurate conclusion. Rest assured its coming though.
- Speaking of tanks; as most of you know the one thing I try to do is discuss British military history that seems to be forgotten and recently I learned about the role of British tanks and crews in the Russian Civil War in the aftermath of World War One. I found the story fascinating and have been researching it since in preparation for an article. I had hoped to have it published by now but alas family commitments prevented it.
- As some of you know the site now has a “Defence of the Realm Recommends” menu on the right hand side of the screen as you scroll down. These are sites I feel deserve special mention for one reason or another such as providing a source for an article or are written by people with passion and deserve more recognition. (uh hum…if you like RC helicopters check out Home Drones…Uh hum…Just saying 😉 )
- This month I got the chance to feel like a 12 year old again when I got the opportunity to climb inside a Vulcan B.2 bomber at East Midlands Aeropark. This inspired me to do more posts about museum exhibits in the UK. More are on the horizon as I plan to revisit, among others, the International Helicopter Museum in Weston-Super-Mare.
- Finally the look of the site is going to be going through a big change soon. I am ditching the drop-down menus format and instead replacing them with menu pages. The drop-down menus were fine in the early days but now the site is growing so large they are filling the page and cluttering it up. Menu pages will also give me the chance to put notes up on updated pages.
Thank you again for reading. If you would like to comment on any of the above or have your own suggestions/observations please feel free to put them in the box below. I will do my best to respond to everyone.