Following last year's swingeing cuts to the Royal Navy fleet, the UK government has announced arrangements which will allow Britain and France to share the only aircraft carrier owned by a western European nation.
At present, the French carrier is moored off Libya, with its aircraft leading the valiant NATO effort against Gaddafi. Following this, it will withdraw to Portsmouth for maintenance and thorough fumigation, in order to dispel the waft of garlic which permeates its decks.
Vice-Admiral Quentin Albatross said, "This is deeply embarrassing for us. We told the government the cuts were taking things too far. Now we have to rely on the Frogs to protect us and give us a military presence. I can hear Nelson turning in his grave".
What the UK government has not revealed, is that the French have a mandatory 35 hour working week. This means the French carrier will only be available for Royal Navy use for less than eighteen hours per week, which is not enough to defend the Isle of Wight.