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Old 03-27-2019, 12:26 AM
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Location: Tasmania, Australia
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....and the logistical situation for Australia in T2k just got a lot worse.
During the 1990's the RAN had just two, woefully inadequate minesweepers which weren't even capable of handling rough seas. The first of their replacements was made by Italy and didn't launch until AFTER Italy declared war on NATO, therefore it seems fairly certain it was pressed into Italian service rather than delivered half way around the world. The second vessel of the class (and IRL four more after it) were to be built in Australia, but it didn't even hit the water until mid 98 and wasn't commissioned until early 2000. Even with accelerated production it's very unlikely it would have been completed at all, at least not as a mine hunter....

Why is this important? Well, a 1986 report identified the vulnerability of Australian ports and shipping to mines. With just two inadequate vessels to cover five identified ports in the north alone (not to mention another eight major and uncounted numbers of minor ports in the south), well, I think you can all see the problem...
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