Army losing key staff under voluntary redundancies - Telegraph A fine piece of journalism by Andrew Hough... By Andrew Hough 6:25AM GMT 08 Jan 2013 Critical posts, including intelligence officers, interrogators and linguists, are being left unfilled as up to 5,000 jobs are axed, army commanders claimed. They also fear they will have no control over the Armys future shape when job cuts take affect this month, as talented soldiers leave and less competent staff remain. A leaked email suggests No 10 leant on military chiefs to accept voluntary, rather than compulsory redundancies, a claim denied by Downing Street. The claims are made in an internal Army email, headed Redundancy War Game that was sent among a group of senior officers, and leaked to the Times. One officer wrote on November 27, last year: All the evidence to date is that No 10 is not yet convinced of the need for more tranches and the sensitivity is particularly acute over non-applicants.A second officer suggested that with "measures to increase the number of applicants, there is a real risk that No 10 could still block all further non-applicant redundancies". Another internal briefing note, from the Army Personnel Centre to commanders, claimed there was a growing problem over the number of vacancies, known as gapping. The Army is expected to shed 9,500 jobs over the next two years. Downing Street sources last night dismissed suggestions officials were trying to speed up the up the redundancy process but admitted that voluntary redundancies are always preferable. They added: "We do not recognise the suggestion that we have been trying to 'speed up' the redundancy process. This is a complex issue and one that needs to be carefully considered. "Yes, voluntary redundancies are always preferable but Army restructuring is a decision for the Military and the MoD and it must be one which leaves us with a flexible army with full operational capability." Major General James Everard, Assistant Chief of the General Staff, said the Army had to cut 82,000 jobs over the next few years and "the redundancy scheme aims to achieve this". The Army is seeking to maximize the number of applicants for the scheme whilst meeting its future requirements. Gapping is inevitable during a period of turbulence but the Armys outputs will not be affected and Afghanistan remains its top priority. Gapping is inevitable during a period of turbulence but the Armys outputs will not be affected and Afghanistan remains its top priority, he added.