A famine is a widespread scarcity of food, caused by several factors including war, crop failure, population imbalance, or government policies. This phenomenon is accompanied or followed by regional malnutrition, starvation and increased mortality; every inhabited continent in the world has experienced a period of famine throughout history. In the 19th and 20th century, it was Southeast and South Asia, as well as Eastern and Central Europe that suffered the most deaths from famine; the numbers dying from famine began to fall from the 2000s. Some countries in sub-Saharan Africa, continue to have extreme cases of famine. Since 2010, Africa has been the most affected continent in the world; as of 2017, the United Nations has warned some 20 million are at risk in South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen. The distribution of food has been affected by conflict. Most programmes now direct their aid towards Africa. According to the United Nations humanitarian criteria if there are food shortages with large numbers of people lacking nutrition, a famine is declared only when certain measures of mortality and hunger are met.
The criteria are: At least 20% of households in an area face extreme food shortages with a limited ability to cope The prevalence of acute malnutrition in children exceeds 30% The death rate exceeds two people per 10,000 people per dayThe declaration of a famine carries no binding obligations on the UN or member states, but serves to focus global attention on the problem. The cyclical occurrence of famine has been a mainstay of societies engaged in subsistence agriculture since the dawn of agriculture itself; the frequency and intensity of famine has fluctuated throughout history, depending on changes in food demand, such as population growth, supply-side shifts caused by changing climatic conditions. Famine was first eliminated in Holland and England during the 17th century, due to the commercialization of agriculture and the implementation of improved techniques to increase crop yields. In the 16th and 17th century, the feudal system began to break down, more prosperous farmers began to enclose their own land and improve their yields to sell the surplus crops for a profit.
These capitalist landowners paid their labourers with money, thereby increasing the commercialization of rural society. In the emerging competitive labour market, better techniques for the improvement of labour productivity were valued and rewarded, it was in the farmer's interest to produce as much as possible on their land in order to sell it to areas that demanded that product. They produced guaranteed surpluses of their crop every year. Subsistence peasants were increasingly forced to commercialize their activities because of increasing taxes. Taxes that had to be paid to central governments in money forced the peasants to produce crops to sell. Sometimes they produced industrial crops, but they would find ways to increase their production in order to meet both their subsistence requirements as well as their tax obligations. Peasants used the new money to purchase manufactured goods; the agricultural and social developments encouraging increased food production were taking place throughout the 16th century, but took off in the early 17th century.
By the 1590s, these trends were sufficiently developed in the rich and commercialized province of Holland to allow its population to withstand a general outbreak of famine in Western Europe at that time. By that time, the Netherlands had one of the most commercialized agricultural systems in Europe, they grew many industrial crops such as flax and hops. Agriculture became specialized and efficient; the efficiency of Dutch agriculture allowed for much more rapid urbanization in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries than anywhere else in Europe. As a result and wealth increased, allowing the Netherlands to maintain a steady food supply. By 1650, English agriculture had become commercialized on a much wider scale; the last peacetime famine in England was in 1623–24. There were still periods of hunger, as in the Netherlands, but no more famines occurred. Common areas for pasture were enclosed for private use and large scale, efficient farms were consolidated. Other technical developments included the draining of marshes, more efficient field use patterns, the wider introduction of industrial crops.
These agricultural developments led to wider prosperity in increasing urbanization. By the end of the 17th century, English agriculture was the most productive in Europe. In both England and the Netherlands, the population stabilized between 1650 and 1750, the same time period in which the sweeping changes to agriculture occurred. Famine still occurred in other parts of Europe, however. In East Europe, famines occurred as late as the twentieth century; because of the severity of famine, it was a chief concern for other authorities. In pre-industrial Europe, preventing famine, ensuring timely food supplies, was one of the chief concerns of many governments, although they were limited in their options due to limited levels of external trade and an infrastructure and bureaucracy too rudimentary to effect real relief. Most governments were concerned by famine because it could lead to revolt and other forms of social disruption. By the mid-19th century and the onset of the Industrial Revolution, it became possible for governments to alleviate the effects of famine through price controls, large scale importation of food products from foreign markets, rationing, regulation of production and charity.
The Great Famine of 1845 in Ireland was one of the first famines to feature such intervention, although the government respon
Somali Civil War
The Somali Civil War is an ongoing civil war taking place in Somalia. It grew out of resistance to the military junta led by Siad Barre during the 1980s. By 1988–90, the Somali Armed Forces began engaging various armed rebel groups, including the Somali Salvation Democratic Front in the northeast, the Somali National Movement in the northwest, the United Somali Congress in the south; the clan-based armed opposition groups managed to overthrow the Barre government in 1991. Various armed factions began competing for influence in the power vacuum and turmoil that followed in the south. In 1990–92 customary law temporarily collapsed due to the fighting; this precipitated the arrival of UNOSOM I UN military observers in July 1992, followed by larger peacekeeping forces. Factional fighting continued in the south. In the absence of a central government, Somalia became a "failed state"; the UN withdrew in 1995, having incurred significant casualties, but no central authority had yet been reestablished.
After the collapse of the central government, there was some return to customary and religious law in most regions. In 1991 and 1998, two autonomous regional governments were established in the northern part of the country; this led to a relative decrease in the intensity of the fighting, with SIPRI removing Somalia from its list of major armed conflicts for the years 1997 and 1998. In 2000, the Transitional National Government was established, followed by the Transitional Federal Government in 2004; the trend towards reduced conflict halted in 2005, sustained and destructive conflict took place in the south in 2005–07. However, the fighting was of intensity than in the early 1990s. In 2006, Ethiopian troops seized most of the south from the newly formed Islamic Courts Union; the ICU splintered into more radical groups, notably Al-Shabaab, which have since been fighting the Somali government and the AU-mandated AMISOM peacekeeping force for control of the country. Somalia topped the annual Fragile States Index for six years between 2008 and 2013.
In October 2011, following preparatory meetings, Kenyan troops entered southern Somalia to fight Al-Shabaab, to establish a buffer zone inside Somalia. Kenyan troops were formally integrated into the multinational force in February 2012; the Federal Government of Somalia was established in August 2012, constituting the first permanent central government in the country since the start of the civil war. International stakeholders and analysts have subsequently begun to describe Somalia as a "fragile state", making some progress towards stability. In May 1986, Mohamed Siad Barre suffered serious injuries in an automobile accident near Mogadishu, when the car, transporting him smashed into the back of a bus during a heavy rainstorm, he was treated in a hospital in Saudi Arabia for head injuries, broken ribs and shock over a period of a month. Lieutenant General Mohamed Ali Samatar Vice President, subsequently served as de facto head of state for the next several months. Although Barre managed to recover enough to present himself as the sole presidential candidate for re-election over a term of seven years on December 23, 1986, his poor health and advanced age led to speculation about who would succeed him in power.
Possible contenders included his son-in-law General Ahmed Suleiman Abdille, at the time the Minister of the Interior, in addition to Samatar. In an effort to hold on to power, Barre's ruling Supreme Revolutionary Council became totalitarian and arbitrary; this caused opposition to his government to grow. Barre in turn tried to quell the unrest by abandoning appeals to nationalism, relying more and more on his own inner circle, exploiting historical clan animosities. By the mid-1980s, more resistance movements supported by Ethiopia's communist Derg administration had sprung up across the country. Barre responded by ordering punitive measures against those he perceived as locally supporting the guerrillas in the northern regions; the clampdown included bombing of cities, with the northwestern administrative center of Hargeisa, a Somali National Movement stronghold, among the targeted areas in 1988. In 1990, as fighting intensified, Somalia's first President Aden Abdullah Osman Daar and about 100 other Somali politicians signed a manifesto advocating reconciliation.
A number of the signatories were subsequently arrested. Barre's heavy-handed tactics further strengthened the appeal of the various rebel movements, although these groups' only common goal was the overthrow of his government, it played a major role in developing piracy in Somalia. By mid 1990, United Somali Congress rebels had captured most towns and villages surrounding Mogadishu, which prompted some to give Barre the ironic title'Mayor of Mogadishu.' In December the USC entered Mogadishu. Four weeks of battle between Barre's remaining troops and the USC ensued, over the course of which the USC brought more forces into the city. By January 1991, USC rebels had managed to defeat the Red Berets, in the process toppling Barre's government; the remainder of the government's forces finally collapsed. Some became irregular regional forces and clan militias. After the USC's victory over Barre's troops, the other rebel groups declined to cooperate with it, as each instead drew primary support from their own constituencies.
Among these other opposition movements were the Somali Patriotic Movement and Somali Democratic Alliance, a Gadabuursi group, formed in the northwest to counter the Somali National Movement Isaaq militia. For its part, the SNM refused to accept the legitimacy of the provisio
The Italian Navy is the Navy of the Italian Republic. It is one of the four branches of Italian Armed Forces and was formed in 1946 from what remained of the Regia Marina after World War II; as of August 2014, the Italian Navy had a strength of 30,923 active personnel with 184 vessels in service, including minor auxiliary vessels. It is considered a blue-water navy; the Regia Marina was formed on March 1861, after the proclamation of the Kingdom of Italy. The Italian Navy assumed its present name after the Italian monarchy was abolished following a popular referendum held on June 2, 1946. At the end of its five years involvement in World War II, Italy was a devastated nation. After the end of hostilities the Regia Marina, which at the beginning of the war was the fourth largest navy in the world with a mix of modernised and new battleships, started a long and complex rebuilding process; the important combat contributions of the Italian naval forces after the signing of the armistice with the Allies on September 8, 1943, the subsequent cooperation agreement on September 23, 1943, left the Regia Marina in a poor condition, with much of its infrastructure and bases unusable and its ports mined and blocked by sunken ships.
However, a large number of its naval units had survived the war, albeit in a low efficiency state, due to the conflict and the age of many vessels. The vessels that remained were: 5 battleships 10 cruisers 10 destroyers 20 frigates 20 corvettes 50 fast coastal patrol units 50 minesweepers 19 amphibious operations vessels 5 school ships 1 support ship and plane transport The peace treaty signed on February 10, 1947 in Paris was onerous for Regia Marina. Apart from territorial and material losses the following restrictions were imposed: A ban on owning, building or experimenting with atomic weapons, self-propulsion projectiles or relative launchers, etc. A ban on owning Battleships, Aircraft carriers and Amphibious Assault units. A ban on operating military installations on the islands of Pantelleria, Pianosa and on the archipelago of Pelagie Islands; the treaty ordered Italy to put the following ships at the disposals of the victorious nations United States, Soviet Union, Great Britain, Greece and Albania as war compensation: 3 Battleships: Giulio Cesare, Vittorio Veneto.
Great changes in the international political situation, which were developing into the Cold War, convinced the United Kingdom and United States to discontinue the transfer of Italy's capital ships as war reparations. Some had been dismantled in La Spezia between 1948 and 1955, including the flagship aircraft carrier Aquila. However, the Soviet Union demanded the surrender of the battleship Giulio Cesare and other naval units designated for transfer; the cruisers Attilio Regolo and Scipione Africano became the French Chateaurenault and Guichen, while Eugenio di Savoia became the Greek Helli. After break up and/or transfers, only a small part of the fleet remained to be recommissioned into the Marina; as Western attention turned to the Soviets and the Mediterranean Sea, Italian seas became one of the main sites of confrontation between the two superpowers, contributing to the re-emergence of Italy's naval importance thanks to her strategic geographical position. With the new elections in 1946, the Kingdom of Italy became a Republic, the Regia Marina took the name of Marina Militare.
As the Marshall Plan began to rebuild Italy and Europe was being divided into two geopolitically antagonistic blocs, Italy began talks with the United States to guarantee adequate security considerations. The US government in Washington wished to keep its own installations on the Italian Peninsula and relaxed the Treaty restrictions by including Italy in the Mutual Defense Assistance Programme. On April 4, 1949, Italy joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and, in order for the navy to contribute in the organization, the Treaty restrictions were definitively repealed by the end of 1951, with the consent of all of Western nations. Within NATO, the Italian Navy was assigned combat control of the Adriatic Sea and Strait of Otranto, as well as the defence of the naval routes through the Tyrrhenian Sea. To ensure these tasks a "Studio sul potenziamento della Marina italiana in relazione al Patto Atlantico" was undertaken, which researched the structures and the methods for the development of the navy.
The ensign of the Italian Navy is the Italian tricolour defaced with the coat of arms of the Marina Militare. The quarters refer to the four Medieval Italian Thalassocracies, or "Maritime Republics": 1st quarter: on red, a golden winged lion wielding a sword; the shield has a golden crown, that distinguishes military vessels from merchant: the crown, "corona rostrata", was proposed in 1939 by Admiral Domenico Cavagnari to the Government, as an acknowledgement of the Italian Navy's origin in Roman times. In the proposal, Adm. Cavagnari wrote that "in order to recall the common origin from the Roman sailorship, the Insignia wi
Stromboli is a small island in the Tyrrhenian Sea, off the north coast of Sicily, containing one of the three active volcanoes in Italy. It is one of a volcanic arc north of Sicily; this name is derived from the Ancient Greek name Strongúlē, derived from στρογγύλος, after the volcano's round, conical appearance when seen from a distance. The island's population is about 500; the volcano has erupted many times and is active with minor eruptions visible from many points on the island and from the surrounding sea, giving rise to the island's nickname "Lighthouse of the Mediterranean". Stromboli's most recent major eruption was on April 13, 2009. Stromboli stands 926 m above sea level, over 2,700 m on average above the sea floor. There are three active craters at the peak. A significant geological feature of the volcano is the Sciara del Fuoco, a big horseshoe-shaped depression generated in the last 13,000 years by several collapses on the northwestern side of the cone. 2 km to the northeast lies Strombolicchio, the volcanic plug remnant of the original volcano.
Mount Stromboli has been in continuous eruption for the past 2,000 years. A pattern of eruption is maintained in which explosions occur at the summit craters, with mild to moderate eruptions of incandescent volcanic bombs, at intervals ranging from minutes to hours; this Strombolian eruption, as it is known, is observed at other volcanoes worldwide. Eruptions from the summit craters result in a few short, but energetic bursts, ranging up to a few hundred meters in height, containing ash, incandescent lava fragments and stone blocks. Stromboli's activity is exclusively explosive, but lava flows do occur at times when volcanic activity is high: an effusive eruption occurred in 2002, the first in 17 years, again in 2003, 2007, 2013–14. Volcanic gas emissions from this volcano are measured by a multi-component gas analyzer system, which detects pre-eruptive degassing of rising magma, improving prediction of volcanic activity; the two villages San Bartolo and San Vincenzo lie in the northeast while the smaller village Ginostra lies in the southwest.
Administratively, they are one of the frazione of Messina. In the early 1900s a few thousand people inhabited the island, but after several emigrations the population numbered a few hundred by the mid-1950s. In Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne, the conclusion of the novel is set on Stromboli. Author J. R. R. Tolkien identified his fictional volcano Mount Doom in Mordor with the volcano of Stromboli, according to scholar Clyde S. Kilby. Stromboli known as: Stromboli, land of God, is an Italian-American film set on Stromboli, directed by Roberto Rossellini and starring Ingrid Bergman. Mount Stroumboulas List of islands of Italy Stromboli travel guide from Wikivoyage Information about Stromboli and on its seismic monitoring network
United Nations peacekeeping
Peacekeeping by the United Nations is a role held by the Department of Peacekeeping Operations as "a unique and dynamic instrument developed by the organization as a way to help countries torn by conflict to create the conditions for lasting peace". It is distinguished from peacebuilding and peace enforcement although the United Nations does acknowledge that all activities are "mutually reinforcing" and that overlap between them is frequent in practice. Peacekeepers monitor and observe peace processes in post-conflict areas and assist ex-combatants in implementing the peace agreements they may have signed; such assistance comes in many forms, including confidence-building measures, power-sharing arrangements, electoral support, strengthening the rule of law, economic and social development. Accordingly, UN peacekeepers can include soldiers, police officers, civilian personnel; the United Nations Charter gives the United Nations Security Council the power and responsibility to take collective action to maintain international peace and security.
For this reason, the international community looks to the Security Council to authorize peacekeeping operations through Chapter VII authorizations. Most of these operations are established and implemented by the United Nations itself, with troops serving under UN operational control. In these cases, peacekeepers remain members of their respective armed forces, do not constitute an independent "UN army," as the UN does not have such a force. In cases where direct UN involvement is not considered appropriate or feasible, the Council authorizes regional organizations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the Economic Community of West African States, or coalitions of willing countries to undertake peacekeeping or peace-enforcement tasks. Mr. Jean-Pierre Lacroix is the Head of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, he took over from the former Under-Secretary-General Mr. Hérve Ladsous on 1 April 2017. DPKO's highest level doctrine document, entitled "United Nations Peacekeeping Operations: Principles and Guidelines" was issued in 2008.
In 2007, a peacekeeper volunteer was required to be over the age of 25 with no maximum age limit. Peacekeeping forces are contributed by member states on a voluntary basis; as of 30 June 2018, there are 104,680 people serving in UN peacekeeping operations. European nations contribute nearly 6,000 units to this total. Pakistan and Bangladesh are among the largest individual contributors with around 8,000 units each. African nations contributed nearly half the total 44,000 units; every peacekeeping mission is authorized by the Security Council. Once a peace treaty has been negotiated, the parties involved might ask the United Nations for a peacekeeping force to oversee various elements of the agreed upon plan; this is done because a group controlled by the United Nations is less to follow the interests of any one party, since it itself is controlled by many groups, namely the 15-member Security Council and the intentionally diverse United Nations Secretariat. If the Security Council approves the creation of a mission the Department of Peacekeeping Operations begins planning for the necessary elements.
At this point, the senior leadership team is selected. The department will seek contributions from member nations. Since the UN has no standing force or supplies, it must form ad hoc coalitions for every task undertaken. Doing so results in both the possibility of failure to form a suitable force, a general slowdown in procurement once the operation is in the field. Romeo Dallaire, force commander in Rwanda during the Rwandan Genocide there, described the problems this poses by comparison to more traditional military deployments: He told me the UN was a "pull" system, not a "push" system like I had been used to with NATO, because the UN had no pool of resources to draw on. You had to make a request for everything you needed, you had to wait while that request was analyzed... For instance, soldiers everywhere have to drink. In a push system and water for the number of soldiers deployed is automatically supplied. In a pull system, you have to ask for those rations, no common sense seems to apply.
While the peacekeeping force is being assembled, a variety of diplomatic activities are being undertaken by UN staff. The exact size and strength of the force must be agreed to by the government of the nation whose territory the conflict is on; the Rules of Engagement must be developed and approved by both the parties involved and the Security Council. These give the specific scope of the mission, it will be mandated that peacekeepers have host government minders with them whenever they leave their base. This complexity has caused problems in the field; when all agreements are in place, the required personnel are assembled, final approval has been given by the Security Council, the peacekeepers are deployed to the region in question. The financial resources of UN Peacekeeping operations are the collective responsibility of UN Member States. Decisions about the establishment, maintenance or expansion of peacekeeping operations are taken by the Security Council. According to UN Charter every Member State is obligated to pay their respective share for peacekeeping.
Peacekeeping expenses are divided by the General Assembly based upon a formula established by Member States which takes into account the relative economic wealth of Member States among other things. In 2017, the UN agreed to reduce the peacekeeping budget by $6
Anti-submarine warfare carrier
An anti-submarine warfare carrier is a type of small aircraft carrier whose primary role is as the nucleus of an anti-submarine warfare hunter-killer group. This type of ship came into existence during the Cold War as a development of the escort carriers used in the ASW role in the North Atlantic during World War II. After World War II, the main naval threat to most Western nations was confrontation with the Soviet Union; the Soviets ended the war with a small navy and took the route of asymmetric confrontation against Western surface ship superiority by investing in submarines both for attack and fielding submarine-launched missiles. Several nations who purchased British and US surplus light carriers were most able to accommodate slow-moving, less expensive, easy-to-land anti-submarine aircraft from the 1960s forward, such as the S-2 Tracker, which flew from the decks of US, Australian, Dutch and Brazilian carriers, or Alizé, which flew from French and Indian ships, allowing these ships to still remain useful in the framework of NATO as newer fighter and strike aircraft were becoming too heavy for the equipment designed for World War II aircraft.
Improvement in long-range shore-based patrol and conventional ship-based ASW helicopter capability combined with the increasing difficulty maintaining surplus WWII carriers led to most of these ships being retired or docked by smaller nations from the 1970s to the mid-1980s. This trend in ASW force draw-down only accelerated with the massive reduction in the operational Soviet/Russian submarine fleet, which went to sea in large numbers in the 1990s. Ships that could be called dedicated ASW carriers are now only found within the Japan MSDF, which operates helicopters and no fixed-wing carrier-based aircraft of any kind; the United States Navy, the last nation to operate a dedicated fixed-wing carrier-based ASW aircraft, the S-3 Viking, on its mixed-role super carriers had removed most ASW equipment in the 1990s from this aircraft and has now removed this type from service as of January 2009 without replacement. The Argentine Navy without much hope of a replacement CATOBAR carrier of its own, trained several times a year landings and takeoffs of their S-2 Turbo Trackers aboard the Brazilian aircraft carrier São Paulo until this carrier was retired.
Much easier to operate from small decks than fixed-wing aircraft were ASW helicopters, which flew from the decks of nearly all allied conventional carriers to this day and most LPH or STOVL carriers operated by the Soviet, Italian, Japanese and Thai navies. Aircraft carriers and helicopter carriers that had primary ASW duties from the mid-1960s onward. Argentine NavyARA Independencia – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR S-2 and helicopters ARA Veinticinco de Mayo – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR S-2 and helicoptersBrazilian NavyMinas Gerais – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR and helicoptersFrench NavyArromanches – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR and helicoptersItalian NavyGiuseppe Garibaldi one ship, ASW helicopter carrier 1985–1988, STOVL fighters and ASW helicopters carrier 1988–. Japan Maritime Self-Defense ForceHyūga class. ASW, sea mine clearing helicopters Izumo class. ASW, sea mine clearing helicoptersRoyal NavyHMS Bulwark. HMS Hermes. Invincible class – three ships Strike/ASW/Amphibious Assault STOVL and helicopters.
These ships were designed as "through-deck cruisers" for the ASW role and command, but ended up equipped with Harrier STOVL fighters for fleet defence against Soviet reconnaissance aircraft. After the Falklands War they were used as conventional, albeit light, fleet aircraft carriers in the power projection role. HMS Invincible and HMS Ark Royal retired/scrapped, HMS Illustrious converted to amphibious assault ship scrapped 2016. Royal Australian NavyHMAS Melbourne – one ship strike/ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR and helicoptersRoyal Canadian NavyHMCS Bonaventure – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR and helicoptersRoyal Netherlands NavyHNLMS Karel Doorman – one ship ASW fixed-wing CATOBAR and helicoptersSoviet/Russian NavyMoskva class. Strike/ASW STOVL and helicopters Príncipe de Asturias one ship STOVL fighters and helicopters 1988–2013United States NavyEssex class – ASW carriers with fixed-wing and helicopter anti-submarine aircraft and AEW aircraft, although carried an A-4 Skyhawk detachment for daytime combat air patrol fixed-Wing CATOBAR and helicopters Wasp class, Tarawa class, the LPH amphibious assault ships were given secondary roles of sea control meaning they would deploy with a modified air complement consisting of ASW helicopters and a STOVL fighter group for air defense.
Escort carrier Helicopter carrier Light aircraft carrier
Landing Craft Utility
The Landing Craft Utility is a type of boat used by amphibious forces to transport equipment and troops to the shore. They are capable of transporting tracked or wheeled vehicles and troops from amphibious assault ships to beachheads or piers; the Engin de débarquement amphibie rapide landing catamaran or L-CAT, entered service in January 2011. They can carry a main battle tank like other European LCUs but are capable of much higher speeds, up to 30 knots. Germany has two Barbe-class utility landing craft, dating from the mid-1960s, which remain in service under the SEK-M Naval Special Forces' command. Germany is looking to acquire more such crafts. Five Barbe landing crafts were transferred to Greece at the end of the Cold War. India has three Kumbhir class LCU, two Mk III class LCU and four Mk IV class LCU; the first Mk III class LCU was commissioned on 18 July 1986.. Four more MK IV class of LCU are under construction at GRSE. With the launch of the amphibious transport ship HNLMS Rotterdam in 1998 there was a need for LCUs.
The Dutch LCUs are similar to the British LCU Mk.10 with the bridge being set to one side allowing for a roll-on roll-off design. Until 2005 the Netherlands Marine Corps used the LCU Mark I. In 2005 and 2006 the five vessels were modernized to the type Mark II; the vessels have been stretched by 9 meters to decrease their draft, which increased their load carrying capacity by 20 tons and allows them to come closer to shore. In addition they were fitted with a strengthened bow ramp, they can now accommodate the Royal Netherlands Army Leopard 2 A6 main battle tank; because of the lengthening of the Mark II, the Rotterdam can take two LCUs in its dock. The dock of Rotterdam's sister ship, HNLMS Johan de Witt, has the capacity to transport two LCUs, but carries four LCVPs in davits; the Dyugon-class landing craft are operated by the Russian Navy Sweden operates 16 small and fast water jet landing crafts with a displacement of 65 tones. They are armed with one 12,7 mm machine gun but can lay out mines and is equipped with armour for anti submarine warfare.
The vessel type has been exported to the United Arab Emirates. In addition, HSwMS Loke is a larger vessel at a displacement of 305 tones, capable of carrying 150 tones; the ship is armed with two 7,62 mm machine guns. The Armada has been exported to Australia and Turkey; the LCU Mk.9 was built for use on the LPDs Fearless and Intrepid where they were operated from the dock in the rear of the ships. Each ship carried four davit mounted LCVPs; the Mk.9 was to see many changes and upgrades during its service including a move from propeller to jet in many cases. The Mk.9 was capable of traveling as an ocean-going vessel and a number would be converted into a version, affectionately known as the "Black Pig", for use in Norway. The crew heads; the opinion that the successful British amphibious operations during the Falklands War were only possible because of the two LPDs and their landing craft is well documented. In the Falklands War during the Bluff Cove Air Attacks LCU F4 from Fearless was bombed and sunk in Choiseul Sound by an Argentine Air Force A-4B Skyhawk of Grupo 5.
The Mk.9, like the LPDs, served longer than anticipated, providing the backbone of Britain's amphibious assault capabilities. Three Mk.9s, pennant numbers 701, 705, 709, remained in service by 2012. However, by 2014, they had all been withdrawn from service; the LCU Mk.10 class vessels are operated by the Royal Marines. They are intended for use on board the new assault ships Albion and Bulwark and can use the Bay class landing ships. Deliveries of the class started from 1998 and the fleet consists of ten vessels, bearing pennant numbers 1001 to 1010. Both Albion and Bulwark are capable of carrying four LCUs each; these vessels are capable of operating independently for up to 14 days with a range of 600 nautical miles. They are capable of operating worldwide, from Arctic operating areas to tropical operating areas; the Mk.10 differs from the Mk.9 with the bridge being set to the side allowing for a roll-on roll-off design. This increases efficiency over the old Mk.9 as loading of the rear LCUs can take place without the LCUs being launched, the LPD having to dock down to do so, to change over and load up, a problem prior to the Falklands landings.
The LCU Mk.10 has a 7-man crew and can carry up to 120 Marines or alternatively 1 battle tank or 4 lorries. British assault ships carry smaller LCVPs on davits to transport troops and light vehicles. All ten Mk.10s, pennant numbers 1001 to 1010, remain in service as of 2012. The LCU 1466, 1610 and 1627 class vessels are operated by the United States Navy at support commands, they are a self-sustaining craft complete with living accommodations and mess facilities for a crew of thirteen. They have been adapted for many uses including salvage operations, ferry boats for vehicles and passengers, underwater test platforms; each LCU is assigned a non-commissioned-officer-in-charge, either a Chief Petty Officer or Petty Officer First Class in the Boatswain’s Mate, Quartermaster or Operations Specialist rating. These vessels have bow ramps for onload/offload, can be linked bow to stern gate to create a temporary pier-like structure, its welded steel hull provides high durability with deck loads of 800 pounds per square foot.
Arrangement of machinery and equipment has taken into account built-in redundancy in the event of battle damage. The craft features two engine rooms separated by a watertight bulkhead to permit limited operation in the event that one engine room is di