AJAX - the ‘NOT the CR2 upgrade’ thread

TamH70

MIA
What's your plan for fighting wars in places where Namer is too big and heavy to operate effectively?

Don't.

Specialize in wars we can fight with the tools we have and get rid of the notion that you can drop a British soldier anywhere on the planet and he will win, despite the nature of the terrain, the weather, the political climate at home and abroad, or the populace that we're sending the poor bastard to fight amidst and against.

Anything else is what I'd use the four previously mentioned remnants of the lighter sort of infantry for.

If the Yanks want to fight wars where we can't go, then sod them, they're bigger than us and can afford the mixture of capabilities.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
OK, I meant "I don't think anyone in this discussion subscribes to the tank-centric model."
In the world there probably are. Technically I suppose you do, if only to decry it.

Either that or people like discussing particular elements of the army, equipment and tactics.

There's a couple of long-running threads on rifles, but that doesn't mean that all the participants are rifle-centric types who think that other weapons should only be viewed in context of the rifle. The rifle is simply the focus of that discussion.

After all of this I'm not sure I follow what your point is.

What is the reality that you think we should be subscribing to, and how do you know it is real? Considering that you've trotted out the same tired "the tank is dead" that we've seen before that has been proved untrue every time it's tested.
Actually, you said I said the tank is dead. I told you I did not. That's twice, now. Perhaps you'd follow my point better if you paid attention to my posts rather than the words you put in my mouth.

I'm not going to tell anyone on this thread what they think, but there are plenty of articles on BAR, the Wavell Room, and similar all of which discuss infantry vehicles (i.e. AJAX) in the context of armoured warfare (i.e. as part of an armoured division centered around tank regiments). Many of the announcements from the Army itself over the past ten years have discussed AJAX in that context. It's hardly a massive leap to suggest that is the focus of employing AJAX.

The reality, which I gave examples of, is campaigns around the world in the past 5 years where tanks and armoured formations have been destroyed, outmatched or halted by smaller and lighter forces equipped with (usually) drones and AT. Ironically their most successful use in recent years has been in support of infantry in urban areas, such as leveling Syria. None of this means tanks are going to or should disappear. They will clearly still have uses. It should prompt us to take a massive condor moment about our assumptions (which remain the Army's stated strategy) that an armoured division equipped for armoured warfare is the optimal future.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Don't.

Specialize in wars we can fight with the tools we have and get rid of the notion that you can drop a British soldier anywhere on the planet and he will win, despite the nature of the terrain, the weather, the political climate at home and abroad, or the populace that we're sending the poor bastard to fight amidst and against.

Anything else is what I'd use the four previously mentioned remnants of the lighter sort of infantry for.

If the Yanks want to fight wars where we can't go, then sod them, they're bigger than us and can afford the mixture of capabilities.
Exactly this. "Don't fight wars you cannot win." Rule 1 of strategic estimates since Sun Tzu.
 
Don't.

Specialize in wars we can fight with the tools we have and get rid of the notion that you can drop a British soldier anywhere on the planet and he will win, despite the nature of the terrain, the weather, the political climate at home and abroad, or the populace that we're sending the poor bastard to fight amidst and against.

Anything else is what I'd use the four previously mentioned remnants of the lighter sort of infantry for.

If the Yanks want to fight wars where we can't go, then sod them, they're bigger than us and can afford the mixture of capabilities.
If you are going to pick and choose which wars to get involved in, why do you need Namer then? Just don't get involved in wars which would require it.
 

TamH70

MIA
If you are going to pick and choose which wars to get involved in, why do you need Namer then? Just don't get involved in wars which would require it.

The only wars in which we should as a nation get involved are wars for national survival. Nothing less. We cannot afford to do otherwise. Not the blood, and not the treasure. In those wars, Namer-type vehicles are what I consider to be the best tools for survival.

Anything short of war is what I would use the light infantry remnants in conjunction with the RAF and Royal Navy for, and only then if the potential benefits outweigh the potential consequences. Being driven into things just because it appeases the Yanks is ******* stupid and futile and we've done it far too often and I'm fed up to what's left of my back teeth seeing the bodies of our young men and women come back home in boxes.
 

LD17

MIA
Ok, I will now go on a semi-short rant...... or as I like to call it "If I was Minister of Defence"

If you plan on keeping tanks (CR3) you need Namer. In this day and age in the Western World, public opinion and personnel budgets demand that we keep the Squaddies alive and well. I rather lose equipment such as a tank and have the four crewman survive to either man another tank or go back into the ITO and teach the new guys from their experience. That being said......

RAC merge with AAC.....tanks, attack helicopters, AND NAMER. it can't and shouldn't be expected that the Infantry looks after an AFV which has tank level size and protection. RAC has manned Infantry carrying AFVs before. For Logistic and training reasons its a no brainer.

Infantry.....try and make the Bn pretty universal in makeup. If need be designate one Regiment to be the BOXER equipped unit (The Fusiliers are a good candidate, they recruit, at least lineage wise, from around the UK). Yebbut Rangers can handle the quasi-wars, the Paras/Gurkhas can handle the interventions, and the rest of the Infantry can practice to take on Vlad or back up for the previous mentions.

RA/RHA.......massive increase in capability! Need MLRS, HIMARS, Drones, etc. Again the Gunners were arguably the War Winning Arm in BOTH the 20th Century dust-ups. There is a reason Louis XIV's cannons were inscribed with Ultima Ratio Regum.

Since we are out of Europe, lets look to development of equipment with the U.S.(economy of scale), Australia, and Canada. It would ease development costs and possibly prevent another AJAX fiasco!

The Army Reserve is basically the old Militia now, you need a new TA for Home Defence tasks. It would relieve the regulars from mundane chores and planning. It also is its own KAPE, giving communities a sense of the Army and it can serve, if Vlad makes it past Poland, a mobilization base.

End of rant and MOD walting.......
 
The only wars in which we should as a nation get involved are wars for national survival. Nothing less. We cannot afford to do otherwise. Not the blood, and not the treasure. In those wars, Namer-type vehicles are what I consider to be the best tools for survival.

Anything short of war is what I would use the light infantry remnants in conjunction with the RAF and Royal Navy for, and only then if the potential benefits outweigh the potential consequences. Being driven into things just because it appeases the Yanks is ******* stupid and futile and we've done it far too often and I'm fed up to what's left of my back teeth seeing the bodies of our young men and women come back home in boxes.
Wars of national survival against whom, and where, and under what local conditions? How do you know that Namer will be suitable for a war of national survival if you haven't answered those questions?
 

TamH70

MIA
Wars of national survival against whom, and where, and under what local conditions? How do you know that Namer will be suitable for a war of national survival if you haven't answered those questions?

Bold bit one - Russians. Chinese. Anyone else and it's a "thanks but no thanks" from me, and anyone running the army if they've got half a brain and a pulse.

Bold bit two - our own territory or the very near European continent. Anywhere else and well, see above paragraph.

We have neither the tools nor the mass to go abroad on land-based expeditionary warfare against anyone but the population of Limpopo Gorge, and only then if they've got nothing but sharpened pineapples on sticks. We should stop kidding ourselves and especially the Yanks that we can do otherwise because we've seen the consequences of our pretense of doing so on our telly screens for over the last two decades and got the square root of naff all in terms of anything positive.
 
Bold bit one - Russians. Chinese. Anyone else and it's a "thanks but no thanks" from me, and anyone running the army if they've got half a brain and a pulse.

Bold bit two - our own territory or the very near European continent. Anywhere else and well, see above paragraph.

We have neither the tools nor the mass to go abroad on land-based expeditionary warfare against anyone but the population of Limpopo Gorge, and only then if they've got nothing but sharpened pineapples on sticks. We should stop kidding ourselves and especially the Yanks that we can do otherwise because we've seen the consequences of our pretense of doing so on our telly screens for over the last two decades and got the square root of naff all in terms of anything positive.
Is the Russian army going to be a threat to UK national survival though? Perhaps the UK should focus on the Russian navy in the Atlantic and let the Poles, Germans, and French handle the army?

And as for fighting the Chinese army, where are you going to fight them? India? Taiwan? Where? What's the terrain like there, and can a Namer-like vehicle function effectively in it?

If you want the UK to build a very specialized as opposed to generalist army, then you had first better clearly define who the potential enemy are and where you may end up having to fight them. Remember in this that the enemy will get a say in this as well and if they are the ones attacking they are free to pick a location and season which is most unfavourable to your specialty.

If you decide to focus only on confronting Russia in the Baltics you may find that this strategy is obsolete before you get your first vehicle into service.
 
The only wars in which we should as a nation get involved are wars for national survival. Nothing less. We cannot afford to do otherwise. Not the blood, and not the treasure. In those wars, Namer-type vehicles are what I consider to be the best tools for survival.

Anything short of war is what I would use the light infantry remnants in conjunction with the RAF and Royal Navy for, and only then if the potential benefits outweigh the potential consequences. Being driven into things just because it appeases the Yanks is ******* stupid and futile and we've done it far too often and I'm fed up to what's left of my back teeth seeing the bodies of our young men and women come back home in boxes.

Well then U.K. foreign policy needs to change
 
Is the Russian army going to be a threat to UK national survival though? Perhaps the UK should focus on the Russian navy in the Atlantic and let the Poles, Germans, and French handle the army?

And as for fighting the Chinese army, where are you going to fight them? India? Taiwan? Where? What's the terrain like there, and can a Namer-like vehicle function effectively in it?

If you want the UK to build a very specialized as opposed to generalist army, then you had first better clearly define who the potential enemy are and where you may end up having to fight them. Remember in this that the enemy will get a say in this as well and if they are the ones attacking they are free to pick a location and season which is most unfavourable to your specialty.

If you decide to focus only on confronting Russia in the Baltics you may find that this strategy is obsolete before you get your first vehicle into service.
This is where the crunch comes.
Unless there is a rapid purchase of COTS and an increased risk appetite to tolerate whatever gaps that COTS platform gives, the years required are significant.
Yes we can train lots of people bloody well and at pace.
No we can't build exquisite, in quantity quickly.

And for all its detractors and criticisms about platforms, capabilities etc, at least the Royal Navy can scrape it's sh!t in to one sock, gap a capability whilst it's being built, and get it's organisation singing from the same songsheet.
They don't have to play fantasy fleets as they have one.
What the CSG has done in the Indo Pacific, the Med and up towards the Arctic, with allies and others is pretty impressive.
Until the Army is in that headspace when it can properly manage large scale projects over a long period of time, and people are prepared to take career hits for the greater good/capability, then all it will be doing is carrying on trying desperately to get the AR to do the MACA tasks it doesn't want to do, but does because it has bugger all else of strategic importance.


[And breathe....]
 
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Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Don't.

Specialize in wars we can fight with the tools we have and get rid of the notion that you can drop a British soldier anywhere on the planet and he will win, despite the nature of the terrain, the weather, the political climate at home and abroad, or the populace that we're sending the poor bastard to fight amidst and against.

Anything else is what I'd use the four previously mentioned remnants of the lighter sort of infantry for.

If the Yanks want to fight wars where we can't go, then sod them, they're bigger than us and can afford the mixture of capabilities.
No.

We used to go anywhere and sort things.

Why?

Because we could.
 
Actually, you said I said the tank is dead. I told you I did not. That's twice, now. Perhaps you'd follow my point better if you paid attention to my posts rather than the words you put in my mouth.
I find your posts very difficult to follow, you use a lot of words to cover little content, so I am paraphrasing my understanding. Feel free to clarify.
I'm not going to tell anyone on this thread what they think,
I wouldn't expect you to, which I why I asked what you thought. In your own words, not a hand waved at some ill-defined articles.
The reality, which I gave examples of, is campaigns around the world in the past 5 years where tanks and armoured formations have been destroyed, outmatched or halted by smaller and lighter forces equipped with (usually) drones and AT.
Ok, but I can give examples of the same thing happening over the past hundred years - it really isn't a new occurrence and is usually tied to bad tactics. Usually the commentary focusses on tanks but really it always extends to all armoured vehicles. Whether the commentary is that the AFV is dead or has lost its pre-eminence is a small and frankly irrelevant detail.
infantry vehicles (i.e. AJAX)
Pedantic point: AJAX isn't an infantry vehicle.
Really this latest digression should have been in the Upgrading Warrior thread or the MIV thread
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
I find your posts very difficult to follow, you use a lot of words to cover little content, so I am paraphrasing my understanding. Feel free to clarify.
Bit of a contradiction there: if you aren't following my posts, perhaps you are missing some content. You were certainly making some up, which is what I pointed out.

Ok, but I can give examples of the same thing happening over the past hundred years - it really isn't a new occurrence and is usually tied to bad tactics. Usually the commentary focusses on tanks but really it always extends to all armoured vehicles. Whether the commentary is that the AFV is dead or has lost its pre-eminence is a small and frankly irrelevant detail.
This is a massive bluff. Yes, on a long enough timeline, almost any statement will find evidence supporting it. But this discussion is about now and the next 20-30 years, the lifetime of the current vehicle programs. In THAT timeline, the group of armoured vehicles including tanks, AFVs, IFVs, APCs, and any other pedantic differentiation you like, is looking to be at a substantial disadvantage. That may change, but that is the present J2 picture, and looks like it will last at least a decade or two. Whether that was the case seventy years ago or will be the case seventy years from now is the irrelevant detail, not what is happening today. You are pretending I said something, and then saying that is wrong because at some point in distant history it wasn't true. Perhaps you should just argue with yourself, it would cut out the middle man.

For the third time, I have neither said the tank nor the [armoured carrier designation] is dead, I said that right now and for the near future they are proving to be outmatched and vulnerable to simpler, cheaper countermeasures. That will massively reduce their present and near future utility. You still haven't addressed that point, other than to suggest that at some point in the future that might change. Which is true, but also irrelevant to program decisions today.

Pedantic point: AJAX isn't an infantry vehicle.
Really this latest digression should have been in the Upgrading Warrior thread or the MIV thread
Fine. ARES. Same horse, different saddle. The overall program is called AJAX, so it's hardly incorrect. Please let's not get into the tedious Light Cav obsession about who is "true" recce. It's an infantry task too, and often they do it in vehicles, including SPARTAN, replaced by ARES.
 
For the third time, I have neither said the tank nor the [armoured carrier designation] is dead, I said that right now and for the near future they are proving to be outmatched and vulnerable to simpler, cheaper countermeasures. That will massively reduce their present and near future utility. You still haven't addressed that point, other than to suggest that at some point in the future that might change. Which is true, but also irrelevant to program decisions today.
Yes, this is in line with what I thought you said. Such arguments are typically aligned with headlines proclaiming "Death of the tank" even when the content is much milder. I can see how my defaulting to such language may have been confusing.
Perhaps I can restate my point using the exact words, though the gist of the argument is the same:
The tank, or any other armoured vehicle, has proven outmatched and vulnerable to simpler, cheaper countermeasures at least once a decade for the past century. I'm of the opinion that the current circumstances is not noticeably different to those previous threats. You are free to point out why you differ, of course.
The balance between threat and countermeasure swings back and forth* but this is normal and the threat taking the upper hand for a while isn't unprecedented. On top of that the Javelin is three decades old.
Fine. ARES. Same horse, different saddle. The overall program is called AJAX, so it's hardly incorrect.
Actually I was assuming you meant AJAX as the family name rather than Ajax the light tank. The family aren't infantry vehicles, even though one of them is an APC. Since we were talking about Warrior and Boxer though...

Perhaps you could offer you view on what the future battlefield would look like?
Or perhaps what you think the current battlefield looks like?

*note that the German Leopard 1 was very lightly armoured, considering defending against the current threats with the current armour technology as fruitless and saving money by going lighter and less protected. The develpment of new armours and better running gear saw the design concept swing back to heavier armour.
 
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