The Military of the Anglo-Dutch Union is the largest in the world, It has the world's second largest army and the largest Navy in the world. It is currently involved in two conflicts (The insurgency in South Africa and the counter-insurgency operation in Aceh).
The military history of the United Kingdom has been greatly influential in World history, beginning in 1775 with the merging of the armed forces of England, The Netherlands, The Americas and Scotland to become the armed forces of the Kingdom of Great Britain. Important conflicts in which the Union took part later on in history include the Seven Years' War and the Napoleonic Wars of the 18th century/early 19th century, the Crimean War of the mid 19th Century, and the First and Second World Wars of the 20th century. The Anglo-Dutch Empire, which reached its apogee in the 1920s, was the largest empire in history; almost a half of the world's population were subjects of the Union Crown and it controlled more than a quarter of the world's total land area (and arguably all its seas).
The current structure of defence management in the United Kingdom was set in place in 1964 when the modern day Ministry of Defence (MoD) was created (an earlier form had existed since 1940). The MoD assumed the roles of the Admiralty, the War Office and the Air Ministry.
During the 19th century the Union's military grew into the most advanced in the world. They introduced compulsory conscription in the same century while they made several large technological developments beginning with the introduction of steam power in the 1830's and ironclads in the 1840's.
Although military conflicts in the 19th century were limited with the exception of the Crimean and Napoleonic wars the Union maintained a strong technological lead which eventually culminated with what many believed to be the perfect battleship in the form of HMS Majestic. Outside of the Navy the Union also developed land technologies to give their men the advantage but despite these developments much of the Unions armoury would prove irrelevant in less than ten years time.
In WWII the armed forces of the Anglo-Dutch union were forced to change their tactics to adapt to new naval and land tactics that had been developed by France and Russia. Russia, impressed with the use of carriers by Anglo-Dutch forces during the Imperial intervention the Russian fleet had become the largest carrier force in the world and their planes were put to great use attacking the Japanese fleet in Port Arthur where they sunk five Japanese battleships and over ten cruisers. France had also developed the Anglo-Dutch tanks into the formidable Char G1, AMC 29, Souma S25 and the R-30. These tanks would be used in the invasion of Germany when the German army equipped with only mediocre Panzer II's and III's was unable to destroy the French tanks eventually being defeated.
As a result of the developments by France and Russia the Union's armed forces had to adapt quickly, introducing brand new types of equipment to beat the French and Russians. The admiralty developed the superb City class aircraft carrier and the fast and cheep River class destroyers, They also developed new naval aircraft throughout the war that would later be developed as the Unions new land aircraft. These included the fast and maneuverable Supermarine Seafire/Spitfire, the fast and light Fokker BN VII dive/torpedo bomber and later the Fokker BNJ I jet fighter bomber and the Gloster meteor fighter.
The war office was even more inventive developing the Cromwell and Commet tanks that could take down French tanks at long ranges as well as Valentine tanks that could support Union infantry. Towards the end of the war they combined these tank types into the Centurian MBT and the Panther medium tank, these two designs would later influence world tank designs for decades of come. However, the expense in creating these new tanks meant that Union infantry were forced to use old equipment barely ever receiving new rifles or machine guns.
During the Cold War the Anglo-Dutch Union developed new technology to match the large numbers of tanks and aircraft deployed by Spain and the Ottoman Empire. Naval technology began to be sidelined although the Union did develop large numbers of supercarriers alongside fleet, light and commando (Helicopter) carriers.
The Royal Air Force and Fleet Air Arm received large funding for the first time in the cold war as its role grew into being the Unions primary power projection facility, either through carriers or long ranged aircraft. The RAF and FAA both developed some of the most advanced aircraft in the world including the feared Avro Arrow, The Fokker NBJ VII/VIII, The Hawker Kestral supersonic VTOL craft and the renowned Fairy Delta 3.
Much as it did the rest of Anglo-Dutch society the civil war tore the Anglo-Dutch military in two. The vast majority of the Army sided with Princes Juhan with the exception of the American Colonial Militia and the Marines who sided with Princess Beatrix. The Navy on the other hand sided with Princess Beatrix as a result of her relationship with the First Sea Lord Matthias Van Till. The air force was more of an even split with various squadrons defecting to one or the other claimants depending on their personal viewpoints.
In addition to splitting the Armed Forces in two the Civil War also slowed technological development within the Armed Forces preventing the introduction of several new ship and aircraft designs. With the exception of the last Invincible on the Juhanite side and the India Class Battlecruisers on the Beatrixian side there were no new ships produced for the duration of the civil war. Likewise there were no new aircraft designs made into production runs on either side although both the Americans and the Russians did so.
HMS Ark Royal
Commissioned in 1917 the Ark Royal is the oldest ship in the world that has remained in active service. Very little actually remains of the old carrier however and only the bridge remains superficially similar to the ship laid down in the 1910's. Over the years Ark Royal has undergone no fewer that ten rebuilds and modernisations. Compared with the larger Queen Wilhelmina and Invincible class carriers the Ark Royal is tiny but it fulfills the role of Fleet Carrier and flagship in RN task forces and is still capable of fighting against the newer vessels fielded by Spain and other nations. She is technically similar to the Admiral class fleet carrier and as of 2010 carries 20 Kestral interceptors, 15 Fokker NBJ VII strike fighters and five Westland Sea King helicopters.
Vanguard class battleship
Originaly commissioned in the 1940's the Vanguard class has had a mixed history. Officially confined to the scrapyard in the 1950's they were reactivated to provide fire support for Anglo-Dutch forces in the Italian war before being donated as museum ships. However they were modernised and reactivated in 1976 as part of the 700 ship navy plan serving in support of Anglo-Dutch forces in South Africa. They underwent another modernisation in 2000 and are the most advanced surface combatant in the world. As of 2010 the class consists of; HMS Vanguard, HMS Valient, HMS Volcan and HMS Victor. They are armed with nine 16 inch guns in three turrets, In addition to this they have numerous AA systems and the capacity to launch Lance cruise missiles through their barrels.
India Class Battlecruiser
Designed as a joint venture between the Indian and Union navies the India class were built during the civil war to the personal specifications of then First Sea Lord Matthias Van Till. As a recognition of the declining importance of armour in ship design and the importance of missiles and aircraft in conflicts the India was designed with a heavy emphasis on anti missile counter measures and Anti-Aircraft batteries and speed at the sacrifice of any major armour plating. They also had a heavy broadside with twelve 16 inch guns in three turrets. Four ships were made with two going to the Union and two to the Indian Navy. During the civil war the Union and India both lost a battlecruiser each but towards the end of the civil war HMS Delhi underwent a radical rebuilt and upgrade incorporating the Union's most advanced prototype technologies including the replacement of four of its 16 inchers with twelve inch railguns, To compensate for the increased power draw the Delhi now has two Nuclear Reactors on board with one dedicated to providing power for the guns.
Queen Wilhelmina class super carrier
The Queen Wilhelmina class is the newest and largest class of ships serving in the Royal Navy. The first entered service in 2001 and since then they have been commissioned at the rate of one a year. They have seen limited service although they have been used for counter insurgency operations in Aceh and South Africa. Currently the class consists of; HMS Queen Wilhelmina, HMS Prince of Wales, HMS Prince of Orange, HMS George III, HMS William IV, HMS Queen Elizabeth, HMS William I, HMS Georg I. They have substantial improvements over the existing Invincible class the most noticeable of which was the ability to launch the new Falcon multi-role fighters in addition to the new Fokker SFNJ I strike fighters.
Invincible class super carrier
The Invincible class carriers make up the backbone of the Royal Navy, the first entered service in 1960 and it and its siblings formed the centerpiece of all RN task forces for the next 41 years before finally being replaced by the Queen Wilhelmina class. They have seen service in a variety of combat operations in support of NSA forces with their most notable achievements coming in the Italian war and minor post colonial conflicts. Despite the introduction of the Queen Wilhelmina class three Invincibles remain in service; HMS Intrepid, HMS Illustrious and HMS Implacable. Despite being equipped with catapults and an angled flight deck they are not equipped with the new Falcon fighters and instead are equipped with 30 Kestral interceptors, 30 NBJ VII strike aircraft and eight Westland Sea Kings.
Admiral class fleet carrier
Along with the Queen Wilhelmina super carriers, Sussex class heavy cruisers and Rotterdam class destroyers the Admiral class is part of the SFX fleet renewal program. The first of the four to be introduced the Admiral class is now the largest fleet carrier class in the RN (Although this depends on whether the Aruba class are considered to be carriers) and has totally replaced the preceding Malta class. Consisting of 20 ships the Admiral class is equipped with 20 Falcon fighters, 20 NBJ VII strike aircraft and five Westland Sea Kings.
Aruba class amphibious assault ship
The Aruba class is perhaps the most well known symbol of Union power. While the Admiral, Invincible, Queen Wilhelmina and Vanguard classes are undoubtedly more powerful ships the large number of Aruba's and there sheer size means that they are well known the world over. Traditionally an Aruba will be equipped with around 10-20 Kestrals and a large numbers of helicopters, they are most often used as a way to instantly project Union power to any point in the world.