The UK army and Royal Marines were over-extended in Iraq and Afghanistan. The First Sea Lord went on record last week to state that the navy was being pushed past its limits.
Now it’s the RAF’s turn:
The RAF’s ability to continue operations over Libya into this autumn has been called into question by a senior officer.
Air Chief Marshal Sir Simon Bryant warned that the RAF was “running hot” over its contributions to the western support of Libyan rebels fighting renegade leader Muammar Gaddafi.
Both equipment and personnel were being placed under “huge demand”, he wrote in a briefing paper for MPs seen by the Telegraph newspaper.
“Should Operation Ellamy (Libya) endure past defence planning assumptions the future contingent capability is likely to be eroded,” he wrote…
“Morale remains fragile. Although fighting spirit remains positive, this assessment will be challenged by individual harmony targets as Operation Ellamy endures (after September).”
He flagged up “decreasing satisfaction” with wages and said the strategic defence and security review (SDSR) was continuing to “undermine the sense of being valued”.
Sir Simon added: “There is concern over the perceived lack of strategic direction which is restricting confidence in the senior leadership.”
There is probably also concern in the RAF about being the last service to complain about resources and OPTEMPO.