Could the regular forces act as a reserve for other services?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Closet_Jibber, Sep 1, 2011.

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  1. With all these defence cuts coming in I've had an idea. My idea is based on the governments idea to increase the reserve and reduce regular troop numbers, but in reverse.

    We know that if basic training is high quality and top up training is kept up then you can keep an effective fighting force ticking over. We know this because the government tells us that The TA and other reserves will be an effective replacement for all the regulars they intend to sack.

    We also know the government doesn't like the idea of having lots of troops sat around garrisons wondering what they're doing for the next few weeks.

    So why do we not keep the regulars but just give them all second jobs as reservist civvies.

    I know it sounds like I'm being flippant but I think there I something in it.

    We could have some units trained up as Reservist firefighters who could provide cover or increase numbers on already established watches. We know this because we have done it for a short amount of time.

    We could have medics working in hospitals and A&E's or driving ambulances. We know this because we already do it but on a small scale.

    We could make up the loss in police numbers by swearing in RMP's and RP's as specials.

    Mountain rescue, coastguard/RNLI work etc etc could easily gain from increased support from HMF.

    We could pretty much have troops providing any of the current public services as a reserve element. A pool of trained personnel who can either work a few days a month with a couple of weeks a year dedicated to current training with that chosen service or be called upon at short notice for major events like the olympics or natural disasters etc. We could sell it as getting two for the price of one and the main thing is we would still be keeping a flexible fighting force on the books.

    I know the draw back. What if there is a war or similar large scale operation? Well these services are managing to tick over without troops at the moment so I'm sure they would cope.

    I think its ideal for a few reasons not discounting potential future resettlement for those who leave the forces.

    The nay sayers will say that soldiers should be spending all of their time either at war or preparing for it but the fact is we all know that when not on operations there is a lot of down time which the training wing needs to and often struggles to fill. Well I've just knocked 5 days a month off their calendar.

    Based on what the government tells us about the future I think 3 weeks a month (15 days training) is more than enough left over time to maintain an effective fighting force.
    • Like Like x 2
  2. Nobody fancies driving a prison wagon for a few days a month then?
  3. I've always thought our Navy could charge foreign freight companies to provide protection from pirates as well. Make up some money. Or governments to assist them as well. Why the hell not? But of old fashioned classic british enterprising.

  4. Had a bad day, or just taken extra cynical pills this morning?

  5. Bit of both. :D

    A close relative is one of the many who will be out of a job thanks to this round of cuts. Although he accepts it is necessary I do wonder why we're are making good people unemployed when money is peshed up the wall elsewhere.

    Regarding Gladdwa's idea re the Navy I think we could make a fortune doing that. Training for the lads and fuel and expenses paid for by the shipping firms. I personally don't understand why the ships don't group together before heading into Pirate Territory in company with a couple of destroyers.
  6. Up untill recently we WERE reserve Firemen...

    The idea certainly has legs IMHO. Esp the medics in hosptals.
  7. What happens when the medics have to deploy to a field hospital in Arsecrackastan and the hospital finds half of their manpower disappearing overnight?
  8. They go back to the numbers they have now.

    I'm not suggesting they replace NHS staff. I'm suggesting they increase the numbers whilst they're available and in particular with medics, keep themselves operationally current in their trade.
  9. Actually, with the number of agency staff in hospitals today, this seems like a workable plan which could be less costly than the current system.

    Not so sure it would work in other areas.
  10. But don't people like hospitals, fire, police etc need stable numbers to plan their business? For example, if we took x Regt RAMC and put them in Blankshire General Hospital then for a while BGH has 600-odd medics which is great in theory but in practice nothing can be planned ahead (ie, the number of operations carried out can't be increased) because what happens when old Mrs Smith arrives to get her new hip and the hospital doesn't have that extra 600 staff because they're in an Orangeland field hospital treating the victims of the evil Fantassians?

    The hospital could only ever plan ahead based on their current numbers because they could never rely on having the extra personnel on a month by month basis, if not even a week by week basis. Not to mention how often those extra staff would disappear because they're on exercise or ITD week or whatever.

    It sounds like a great plan in theory but there's some fairly gaping holes in the plan in practice. At least there seems to be, to me. It might give a short term boost to numbers but long term it really wouldn't make a huge amount of difference to the civilian agency because the Army simply can't be relied on long term to supply the manpower.
  11. They're currently planning to do the same level of work with less as the cuts bite. How nice it would be for the armed forces to assist and ease in the transition and where appropriate, increase the numbers.

    Like I say it's not something that should be relied upon but a healthy nice to have. If we invade Greece then such is life the public services go back to the default setting (As they are now) but if we don't invade Greece we have this large pool of flexible pre-paid talent willing and able to assist.

    I personally think this would be a welcome break from the routine of peacetime army life for many and I think the extra numbers would be well received in already stretched public services.

    I'd basically be looking at The TA model but without making the lads and lasses have to work their precious weekends off so it wouldn't interfere with the Holywood weekend piss up.
  12. RMP could work well, especially if the became the more military branch of the para military MoD Police.

    Medics, Dentals could slide in to NHS hospitals (bandsmen and RMAs too).

    RAVC could help out as charity vets for animal homes, zoos, charitable farms and what not.

    Reccy mechs and what not could assist on the motorways, in the event of road works.

    Engrs could build things out in the sticks. ie stone walls.

    AGC could help out in the dole offices (that one placement could save a fcuking fortune).

    And they are just hte ones I could think of would fit the roles of the soldiers involved.
  13. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    As soon as the government get used to the idea of having overstaffed hospitals and fire stations, they will cutback the regular full time manpower in favour of using part time help from the forces. Then when a war breaks out we'll be****ed.
  14. "Mountain rescue, coastguard/RNLI work etc etc could easily gain from increased support from HMF."

    Forget it.

    The mountain rescue and RNLI are voluntry organisations and are very proud of it. They will take a huge amount of offence to the idea of squaddies being put into "their" role. I say this as a TA soldier because I am a volunteer and have volunteered in other areas. Volunteers are happy to be used and abused but take great exception to being patronised, degraded and losing control of their organisation. People who are ordered to do something do not have the same amount of passion and pride as somebody who has volunteered for 20 years plus. Also, do not think for one moment that organisations such as the RNLI / maountain rescue need the skills of squaddies. Yes they work with them - as a compliment - but not as a replacement.

    To put it bluntly if you think that voluntary organisations can be replaced by paid squaddies then you need to go away and do a lot of thinking. Or go boil your head.
  15. Ravers

    Ravers LE Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Sentinel, all he said was that RNLI/MRTs etc. would benefit from increased support from the forces, nothing was mentioned about replacing them.

    Given the fact that you see RNLI and MRT members rattling tins outside tescos most weekends, I'd say they could use all the help they can get, even if it's just the use of two lads in a Landy for a few days a week.