Manning equipment rather than equipping the man?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by msr, Jul 28, 2004.

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  1. msr

    msr LE

    A very interesting perspective from Brig (retd) Daukes in a letter to the Times today:

    From Brigadier C. D. Daukes (retd) Sir, The Chief of the Defence Staff sought to allay the nation’s misgivings over yet another round of defence cuts (Comment, July 22; see also letters, July 23). To many of us his words will not have had that effect.

    He and his chiefs of staff have been persuaded to compromise the number of soldiers, sailors and airmen that defend this country in favour of high-technology weaponry. The argument hinges on a perceived need to change the composition of our Armed Forces to meet changing circumstances.

    Despite his political masters’ clarion calls to the contrary, the result will not leave our Forces better-suited for peacemaking or peacekeeping operations at the expense of a war-fighting capability, but will take us headlong towards the US model of manning equipment rather than equipping the man. We know how disastrous this has been in Baghdad compared with the effect of the British in Basra.

    Yours sincerely,

  2. Never a more true word spoken about the folly of the latest cuts imposed upon us. It seems that the Glorious Leader not only follows Dubya implicitly but wants us to model our forces on the US system. This is a system, which having worked with closely and observed, does not fill me with hope. More like despair and alarm.

    It seems that we are having alll this forced upon us in the same manner that the rest of the country has ALL of New Labours ill conceived 5 year plans forced upon them.

    Roll on the General election :evil:
  3. although it would be a first to have more equipment than men!

    The american forces model has it's most major flaw, in my humble opinion, in the extreme specialization.
    The Brit model of the JOAT use of it's troops cuts dependancy on others to do a job. Maybe not the best way to approach things but maybe better than wainting all day for someone else to do it!
  4. You'd think that this Government would want to have a serious period of consultation on this issue - after all they've done it with the health service, education and devolution issues...but not strangely with regards to defence, police or transportation!!

    I wonder why?
  5. "Consultation" for the Scottish Division ends next Tuesday when the adjutant general informs the council of Scottish colonels what's going to happen. Whatever became of the 'three months" quoted by Buff in the Commons just a week ago? Their minds are made up. Everything else is just for show. Government by smoke and mirrors.
  6. Manning Equipment has always been the Air Force and Navy way. A Navy's power is measured by the number and capabilities of its ships. For example its no good having 200,000 sailors and just 1 Torpedo boat. Same for Air forces all over the world, its the numbers and quality of the aircraft that matter.

    Armies have traditionally been measured against each other by the number of soldiers they have, with numbers of tanks and artillery as a secondary characteristic.

    Equipping Manpower must remain the army philosophy too. No matter how wonderful FRES may turn out (in the dim and distant future) it won't be able to do everything. Basic Army equipment just shouldn't be allowed to get so complex that it needs vast numbers of support staff to keep it operating, or too expensive to be risked.
  7. You mean vast numbers of support contractors.

    Not many new systems still rely on a Corps for 1st and 2nd line maintainance. The contract is worth even more in a support role often at the expense of interoperability.

    The contractors are trying to squeeze us out of anything but a pure infantry role, or so the voices keep telling me anyway. :twisted:
  8. 'The contractors are trying to squeeze us out of anything but a pure infantry role'

    Infantary are cheap, they only pay with their lives. Don't apear on profit/loss accounting.
    I understand not one sitting labour MP has ever served in Her Majestys Armed Forces.
  9. Given the recent slating of the DPA by the NAO and the Commons Defence Select Committee I am more and more dumbfounded by this chain of thought. At a period when the Armed Forces are over-committed the last thing that should be cut back is the manpower.

    It is further proof that it is accountants deciding this policy. The largest part of the Defence budget is wages and pensions, consequently the manpower is the easiest thing to target for cuts. While we have seen that cruise missiles and accurate bombers can debilitate an enemy to the point of national collapse, they do not take and hold ground. Nor can they be used to deal with insurgents as these have little or no fixed infrastructure to target.

    The decision to cut back on the number of regiments is detrimental to the morale of the men involved. They are likely to lose a sense of identity that helps them maintain attitudes that have been seen recently in, for instance, the bayonet charges by the PWRR.

    Having experienced at first hand some of the problems associated with the introduction of new equipment, I can see that the approach of looking to technology to replace manpower is fataly flawed. In many instances ridiculous requirement are imposed that means that equipment has to be tested to withstand events that they will never be exposed to. This results in high cost associated with the equipment when, in reality, more equipment (made simpler and cheaper) would have been a better approach.

    Many of the cutback that have been annouced and some of the delays to replacement programs (i.e. JASF) do not make military sense. They will make the military less flexible and unable to respond as rapidly as they just to.
  10. Why do politicians never learn from history.


    Germany produced small numbers of tiger and king tiger tanks, although equipped with better armour and better armourment than the sherman there far to few of them to make any real difference. Too expensive to complicated and not enough.

    America produced more shermans than you can shake a hairy stick at. fast, small and agile. easily repaired. These tanks coupled with the shear number of men pouring over the allied bridgehead , these are what won the war. Ships helped. Aand the planes with good ground to air comms helped also. But the Tom and Joe on the ground won the day.
  11. In last year's review, and in lessons learnt from Iraq, the US Army and Marines are trying to generate MORE frontline troops (inf, armr, arty) NOT less. Funny how two sets of politicians can watch the same situation and draw totally opposite conclusions!
  12. The U.S. Army and Marines budgets are going up and up, so their analysis calls for more of the stuff that works.

    The UK budget is effectively going down, so as if by magic the MoD analysis calls for less of the things that work and more empty promises of fancy gadgets in the future.

    Incidentally its all those fancy gadgets that the MoD gets critised for being overly optimistic about delivery times. The so called Smart procurement is still being done by the same arrogant/ignorant/indecisive tw*ts that were MOD PE.

    There is little hope of getting decent kit whilst those people are writing the requirements. Industry can only make what its asked to make, no matter how daft we know it to be.
  13. 749

    749 Old-Salt

    good old Abbey Wood :evil:
    they sit there in their shiny white buildings with their moat and don't have a clue how the Army works :oops:
    :idea: should make them all spend some time on the front line and then they would procure stuff that works first time and in time and on budget :!:
  14. Eric Joyce MP has,not that makes him any less of a sellout Blairite Naval device for ship holding
  15. Mr Happy

    Mr Happy LE Moderator

    I think the starting point is different though, 90% of US soldiers are teetharm, 66% if British are the same, or to put it another way 10% of US and 33% of British soldiers are deathdealing mother fckers. Statistics, don't you just love them.