Talk:Royal Air Force

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April 20, 2005Peer reviewReviewed
May 13, 2011Peer reviewReviewed
On this day...Facts from this article were featured on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "On this day..." column on April 1, 2006, April 1, 2008, April 1, 2009, April 1, 2012, April 1, 2018, and April 1, 2020.

Proposed Merge from Royal Air Force Station page[edit]

I suggest that the Royal Air Force station page is merged with the 'Station' section within the Royal Air Force page. The RAF station article is essentially unsourced and what information it does contain is largely unencyclopaedic or would be better placed in and help improve the 'station' section of the main RAF page. Other parts of the page may be better suited to the List of Royal Air Force stations or List of former Royal Air Force stations pages. The main RAF page can then link directly to the two lists of RAF station pages rather than through this page. Thx811 (talk) 22:17, 21 December 2017 (UTC)[reply]

Support I have merged in a modest amount of information which is encyclopaedic and can be used. Dormskirk (talk) 11:55, 31 December 2017 (UTC)[reply]

Wikepedia entry for RAF .[edit]

The entry does not give the reasons for the formation of the RAF i.e. the Smuts Committee recommendation for the defence of London to be brought under one centre. Brotian's Radar and the Defeat of the Luftwaffe; D Zimmerman Amberley 2001 ISBN978-1-44561-1 IPR MD. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:18, 5 April 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Move to Royal Air Force of the United Kingdom[edit]

or United Kingdom Royal Air Force

To keep form with other so-called Royal Air Force (disambiguation) entities, which are several, and because there's no reason to regard one particular monarchist militia as the one and others as the lesser. If brevity is desired then United Kingdom Air Force is simple. The term "royal" is symbolic but not specific. -Inowen (nlfte) 23:58, 5 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]

  • Oppose - Per WP:COMMONNAME, and as it is the actual name of the air force in English, and it is used more in English for the UK's air force than for any other "Royal Air Force". - BilCat (talk) 00:14, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
    • The argument above asserts that the binding between "Royal Air Force" with "United Kingdom Royal Air Force" is "common," when its not common in Saudi Arabia, for example, or Qatar, or other places which have a monarchy, where when they use the term "Royal" they mean their own royalty. And then the above user extends makes a linguistic imperialism argument where anyone who speaks English is also stuck with a queen, and the idea that whenever we say "royal" we mean "Royal" and then specifically the British. -Inowen (nlfte)
      • Totally irrelevant. - BilCat (talk) 01:26, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
      • Agreed. - wolf 06:21, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - per WP:COMMONNAME. Whenever English language sources refer to the Royal Air Force it almost always, with few exceptions, refers to this RAF. Garuda28 (talk) 02:41, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - we've been over this like, a bah-zillion times, (like adding "British" to "Royal Navy"). Royal Air Force, Royal Navy and Royal Marines are all well-established as being British/UK as per commonname and sourcing. (Perhaps we could set up some kind of moratorium on these requests and maybe limit them to one a year... ) - wolf 06:21, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - This is an utter rubbish of a "suggestion" brought up once again. Nuff said~! --Dave ♠♣♥♦™№1185©♪♫® 06:37, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - in agreement with above comments. - LÒÓkingYourBest(Talk|Edits) 08:50, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - for reasons above. Dormskirk (talk) 10:46, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose particlarly for the "monarchist militia" showing bias, but mainly per other leave alone comments above. MilborneOne (talk) 14:38, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose as per WP:COMMONNAME and arguments already outlined above Thx811 (talk) 17:42, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose as per WP:COMMONNAME. The joy of all things (talk) 18:25, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]
  • Oppose - WP:COMMONNAME governs here and this is by far the most common usage in English. - Ahunt (talk) 19:45, 6 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Nice job on the article.Cassell04 (talk) 20:00, 11 September 2018 (UTC)[reply]

The oldest independent air force in the world[edit]

The RAF was formed on April 1st, 1918. The Finnish Air Force was founded on March 6th, 1918.[1] The FAF is almost one month older than the RAF, hence the oldest independent air force in the World. -Subjektivisti (talk) 19:56, 25 January 2019 (UTC)[reply]

Have you read the previous discussions at Talk:Royal Air Force/Archive 1#First independent air force? and Talk:Royal Air Force/Archive 2#'Oldest independent air force in the world'? --David Biddulph (talk) 20:29, 25 January 2019 (UTC)[reply]
No, I hadn't. Thank you for linking those discussions. It seems that we have to agree to disagree. I can't see the reason why being chronologically first an air force must have certain amount of aircraft or the commander's rank should be somewhat high enough or if the commander worked in cooperation with the army and/or with the navy. The independency is, however, the key matter here. Both the RAF and the FAF were independent branches of defence from the start. And this is why the British and the Finnish outdid the French and the rest of the World (Yay!). -Subjektivisti (talk) 14:47, 2 February 2019 (UTC)[reply]


It seems that the article has sometimes adopted a nationalist point of view as might be yours. Only telling the RAF or the FAF is the oldest national independant air force in the world is not the same that telling it became the first independant air force in the world or being one of the oldest air force, it is the oldest national independant one. In this post-colonial and post-brexit world, we need more than nationalism.-Chris — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:54, 18 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]

"Roya Air Force station" listed at Redirects for discussion[edit]

A discussion is taking place to address the redirect Roya Air Force station. The discussion will occur at Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion/Log/2020 May 5#Roya Air Force station until a consensus is reached, and readers of this page are welcome to contribute to the discussion. Regards, SONIC678 23:03, 5 May 2020 (UTC)[reply]

Space Command[edit]

The new article RAF Space Command needs to be linked in from existing articles, including this one of course. (talk) 14:53, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]

The sources say its UK Space Command and not part of the RAF though. Garuda28 (talk) 15:26, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Now corrected. Thanks. Dormskirk (talk) 15:31, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I think another editor just deleted the entire article, notwithstanding interest in the matter, without any discussion on notability, request for speedy deletion or PROD. For what it is worth, I think the command is notable and is likely to become very notable: views welcome. Dormskirk (talk) 15:50, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]
The reversion to a redirect edit summary, "not a major command" is quite unjustified. A two-star's command, joint, dealing with this kind of sensitive issue, is unquestionably notable. But, most important, we're running afoul of WP:CRYSTAL: the only thing officially announced is the officer to be posted in as Commander, and brief details. It has not been established yet, nor an establishment date. Second, the entry should be at United Kingdom Space Command, as Air Commodore Paul Godfrey, when his promotion to Air Vice-Marshal is promulgated, will take up the post of Commander, United Kingdom Space Command (ref at Godfrey article). Buckshot06 (talk) 17:33, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Happy to see it at United Kingdom Space Command. Thanks for that. Dormskirk (talk) 17:37, 2 February 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I've added a starter United Kingdom Space Command section in Strategic Command (United Kingdom) where the other Joint Commands are listed. It is not clear from the RAF News announcement cite naming the commander if it will be called "United Kingdom Space Command", "UK Space Command" or just "Space Command" - all 3 are used; I guess we have to wait and see. I've redirected existing UK Space Command and RAF Space Command to that section for now, rather than them unhelpfully going to the RAF article which does not explain Space Command. Hope that's OK. After doing that I discovered this discussion and that the history of UK Space Command redirect contains the start of an article, I've mostly reinvented - sorry. Rwendland (talk) 01:02, 22 February 2021 (UTC)::::[reply]
Between Godfrey's bio and the announcements it's crystal clear that it will be called United Kingdom Space Command. The other variants will be after first mention. See for example again this new event; UK Space Command is to be established on 1 April 2021. Buckshot06 (talk) 13:13, 10 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
@Dormskirk: @Buckshot06: @Rwendland: At what point do you think it makes sense for it to move out into its own article? I'm not as familiar with British Armed Forces structure, but I'm not sure its under Strategic Command like the other orgs listed, but also don't want it to be quite as much of a stub (though I have no doubts it'll grow fast). Garuda28 (talk) 00:32, 6 April 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I do not think there's enough information yet to create a separate article, but it does not appear to be under Strategic Command, rather, a joint service command, (1) under the auspices of the Royal Air Force/ (2) directly under Space Directorate MOD [1]. But I'm vague about where I picked (1) up and it's not confirmed -- may have been in the online talk between Godfrey and AVM Harv Smith. Leave it where it is for the moment and keep adding material -- we can reassess when significant new material arises or in a month's time. Buckshot06 (talk) 07:57, 6 April 2021 (UTC)[reply]

BlueD954 has helpfully found this

UK Space Cmd sits under the RAF and so has an RAF command chain. But it’s a Joint Command and the Cdr appt is competed Jointly. In addition UK StratCom’s equities as Cap Sponsor for MDI, ISR, PNT are enabled via the UK Space Cmd construct.

..which provides further information, though as a tweet it does not seemingly meet standards for WP:RS. I have copied this over from Talk:Strategic Command (United Kingdom) so the information is available for the discussion - it was a useful, good find. I have also found and referenced a February source which says UKSC will 'sit' under the Royal Air Force, seemingly at a roughly equivalent status to a group. Buckshot06 (talk) 07:37, 28 April 2021 (UTC)[reply]

A discussion is taking place to address the redirect RAF. The discussion will occur at Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion/Log/2021 May 30#RAF until a consensus is reached, and readers of this page are welcome to contribute to the discussion. LenaAvrelia (talk) 22:37, 30 May 2021 (UTC)[reply]

"Air Seeker"[edit]

The main article Boeing RC-135 also uses this name supported by a few sources. Was this used only in the early days? Martinevans123 (talk) 19:21, 19 January 2022 (UTC)[reply]

First World War / Second World War v. World War I / World War II[edit]

WWI/WWII are the terms used in the vernacular and most modern educational settings in the U.K. “The Second World War” is an archaic term generally used by older people. Let’s keep history accessible to the young and the curious and avoid older terms purely for the sake of tradition. I’ll change it back, any major objections please discuss here first. 2A02:C7F:3A65:BE00:9CDA:E890:A407:7AC8 (talk) 23:05, 11 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]

An editor keeps changing "First World War" / "Second World War" to "World War I" / "World War II" , both in this article and elsewhere. I appreciate that World War I / World War II are in widespread use in the US, but in the UK both the UK Government and UK Parliament still refer to First World War / Second World. See here and here so, in my view there is no need to change it. Dormskirk (talk) 23:08, 11 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
This editor has now changed the terminology three times without consensus. Dormskirk (talk) 23:30, 11 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Please don’t be confrontational I am new here. WWII is the modern term used in schools even in the U.K.
sure the older generation still use Second World War but it sounds very archaic and is not used in conversation or in teaching. I think we should keep with modern terminology not past tradition for the sake of the youth who are studying.
I don’t know why you’re saying things about me like “without consensus” because I went straight to the talk page to explain my rationale as soon as someone asked me to. Thanks. 2A02:C7F:3A65:BE00:9CDA:E890:A407:7AC8 (talk) 23:54, 11 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
As I have already explained above both the UK Government and the UK Parliament use "First World War" / "Second World War". I don't think it is helpful to suggest that those who take a different position to you are the "older generation". Securing consensus requires you persuade other editors of the merits of your case before you make the change a second time (see WP:BRD) and I for one am not persuaded. Dormskirk (talk) 00:01, 12 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Well I’m just saying that largely the Second World War term is a more dated expression which is naturally used by older people - nothing wrong with that it’s just natural evolution of language possibly because of transatlantic media influence I’m not sure. My only experience is as a teaching assistant and we refer to it for the children as world war 2 and in the same way we discuss it in the curriculum materials as WW2.
Just because a Parliamentarian used a term doesn’t mean it’s the best term to use in an educational setting like an encyclopaedia. I feel that we should be accessible to all and use the most recognisable term globally (as an international publication).
Would you be kind enough to give me a bit more detail about why you support continuing to describe the conflict as the (more multi syllabic) term instead of WWII? Best wishes 2A02:C7F:3A65:BE00:9CDA:E890:A407:7AC8 (talk) 00:08, 12 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Sure, quite about from the fact the "First World War" / "Second World War" are used by the UK Government and UK Parliament, my biggest concern is that the terminology is in widespread use across wikipedia (see British Army during the First World War and British Army during the Second World War) and this change would affect many articles: there would need to be widespread support from the wikipedia community for such a change. Best wishes. Dormskirk (talk) 00:16, 12 February 2023 (UTC)[reply]
OK well I shall defer to your greater experience of how Wikipedia works, just wanted to keep the content accessible to the young generation who would benefit most from it academically 2A02:C7F:3A65:BE00:9CDA:E890:A407:7AC8 (talk) 01:23, 12 February 2023 (UTC)v[reply]

Flags in infobox[edit]

An editor keeps adding flags to the infobox contrary to MOS:INFOBOXFLAG. In my opinion, we should comply with that guideline. Dormskirk (talk) 15:28, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]

That is me. I see your point about the [[MOS:INFOBOXFLAG] guidelines, however I believe that they should be allowed. They are visual information that allow further accessibility to the somewhat bland infobox. Furthermore, flag icons are a widespread technique in infoboxes, regardless of what the guidelines say. A good example of this is the United States Air Force page, which features a national flag and individual flags for the commanding officers. I think you will find that this infobox is a huge amount more visually interesting and in no way affects the transfer of information. In my opinion, my flag icons (national flag, commander flags and organisation flags) should be reinstated. Please have a look at the earlier version of the page to see what it would look like. Cheers. J.Weir3 (talk) 17:03, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I have seen your earlier version and still believe that the guideline should be complied with. Dormskirk (talk) 18:38, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I understand that you think this, but it is in the name; guidelines, not a rule. A vast number of other pages have flag icons in the infoboxes so this page would not be an ‘outlaw’. I believe adding flag icons will massively improve the overall appearance of the infobox; I know the same can be said about the United States Air Force infobox. I invite any other editors to share their opinion on the matter. J.Weir3 (talk) 19:27, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
No flags. BilCat (talk) 19:38, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
No flags. No flags. No flags. --McSly (talk) 19:41, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
May I tempt you with a small, 25px Union Jack next to ‘United Kingdom’? J.Weir3 (talk) 20:24, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
You have a flag on your user page infobox… J.Weir3 (talk) 20:26, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I have one national flag, not a flag on every other line. One national flag would be acceptable here too. BilCat (talk) 21:28, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Ok thanks for that J.Weir3 (talk) 22:25, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
According to editor @Oknazevad, the use of multiple flags in the infobox is ‘Military representing the country. Flags are correct and appropriate.’ and that they are a ‘military exception’ and to ‘actually read the guidelines’. Is that enough support/evidence to allow their use here? J.Weir3 (talk) 22:37, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
They've been part of these infoboxes forever, and it is usually understood that at least the country flag is an appropriate use for an entity that actively represents the country in an international sphere. We could ditch the things like flags for secretaries or chiefs off staff with no issue, but to remove the national flag is not what was ever intended. And the idea that the guideline bans something that's always been a part of the infobox tells me that the guideline needs to be changed to reflect actual practice, which guidelines are supposed to summarize, not dictate. oknazevad (talk) 22:43, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you very much for that; well said. J.Weir3 (talk) 22:48, 15 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I see J.Weir3 has now re-inserted flags. I am aware that a couple of editors have voiced support for J.Weir3's position but that does not imply consensus. My reading of MOS:INFOBOXFLAG is that "Generally, flag icons should not be used in infoboxes, even when there is a "country", "nationality" or equivalent field: they could be unnecessarily distracting and might give undue prominence to one field among many." It does go on to say that "Examples of acceptable exceptions include infobox templates for military conflicts". However this article is about a military organisation, the RAF, not a military conflict i.e. battle. Views from other editors welcome. Dormskirk (talk) 12:57, 16 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
The use of flags in military infoboxes has long standing precedence. I support it. Garuda28 (talk) 13:47, 16 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Yep, they've been there a long time. I don't see a need a to make mass unnecessary changes just for the sake of some guideline. - wolf 18:34, 16 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
I would support the inclusion of the national flag only, as that would seem consistent with how countries are displayed when featured in most infoboxes. The flags associated with commanders just adds clutter to what is becoming a very long infobox and in the case of the RAF commanders listed, the flag is just the same one repeated over and over for no real benefit. Thx811 (talk) 14:56, 16 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, that was an earlier version I believe. The latest version includes individual flags, eg ACM, AM, WO of the RAF etc. J.Weir3 (talk) 15:31, 16 April 2023 (UTC)[reply]