Op Telic 'Lesson's Learned'Report released under FOI

#1
FOI Request Study on Iraq Invasion by Lt Gen Chris Brown - WhatDoTheyKnow

Dear Mr Bimmler,

Further to recent email correspondence, I can confirm that we have now completed the
consideration of your Freedom of Information request for access to the study prepared by
Lieutenant General Christopher Brown and commissioned by the Ministry of Defence
concerning the invasion of Iraq. I am sorry for the lengthy delay in doing this.
A redacted copy of the study at the point which it had been considered (but not formally
endorsed) by Chiefs of Staff has been published in the Disclosure Log on the MOD
website together with supplementary information about previous lessons identified from Op
Telic - which in some instances is referenced in the study. Although the study was not
formally endorsed by the Chiefs, the recommendations in it are being assessed and will be
taken forward wherever appropriate.
http://www.mod.uk/NR/rdonlyres/F028...873A/0/operation_telic_lessons_compendium.pdf
 
#2
#3
Op TELIC Lessons:

1) Don't start wars that are not in the national interest.

2) If you decide to have a war, pay for the thing.
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#6
Merged with Western's existing thread.
 
#7
If you are on DII the original can be found on the PJHQ Lessons Learned website. Pretty shameful redaction I feel, but there we go....
 
#8
Op TELIC Lessons:

1) Don't start wars that are not in the national interest.

2) If you decide to have a war, pay for the thing.
I wanted to post that!!!

The failed oaf Brown decided NOT to pay for it. Now we have 'Posing' Dave 'doing it', and the risible Osborne NOT paying for it.

Revolution anyone? It would rid our land of the Euroshite as well!
 
#9
If you are on DII the original can be found on the PJHQ Lessons Learned website. Pretty shameful redaction I feel, but there we go....
I'll be reading it with an eye out for observations about C2 - to see if it recognises the problems pointed up by Jim Storr in his report for DGD&D - and if not, wondering whether they have redacted ciriticism in order to escape public scrutiny, as the preferred institutional alternative to recognising and adressing weaknesses.

If the latter, then the word 'learend' is misplaced in the title, shurely. (I need an emoticon for an ironically/quizzically raised eyebrow at this point)
 
#10
Surely Stonker you've learned not to be disappointed with C2 and the British Armed Forces.

Actually quite scathing, not necessarily in a Dr Storr way, more about how you formed your HQs and such like. If it's any consolation the RM came out as "better practice". Also some interesting comments on PJHQs role in the f*ck-ups.

The full report is 260mb, so I haven't got round to downloading it yet.....
 
#11
I'll be reading it with an eye out for observations about C2 - to see if it recognises the problems pointed up by Jim Storr in his report for DGD&D - and if not, wondering whether they have redacted ciriticism in order to escape public scrutiny, as the preferred institutional alternative to recognising and adressing weaknesses.

If the latter, then the word 'learend' is misplaced in the title, shurely. (I need an emoticon for an ironically/quizzically raised eyebrow at this point)
Actually, that is one of the things the author identifies - we're good at "identifying lessons", we're much less good at turning those around into changes on the battlefield. Also, I liked the comments about us seeing doctrine "more as vague guidance" and the "MoD spending its time marking PJHQ's homework". There are some good ones about the airbridge and reserves, as well. Pity the sodding thing isn't searchable, though.
 
#12
Actually, that is one of the things the author identifies - we're good at "identifying lessons", we're much less good at turning those around into changes on the battlefield. Also, I liked the comments about us seeing doctrine "more as vague guidance" and the "MoD spending its time marking PJHQ's homework". There are some good ones about the airbridge and reserves, as well. Pity the sodding thing isn't searchable, though.
Well, that (and the size of the download) is due to the fact that - despite this being the 21st Century - they have uploaded as a PDF file, a scanned copy of printed paper - instead of using a simple program like ScanSoft PDFCreate to transform the Word original to a smaller, searchable PDF file: almost makes you feel that they don't really want anyone to read it . . . . .
 
#13
Actually, that is one of the things the author identifies - we're good at "identifying lessons", we're much less good at turning those around into changes on the battlefield. Also, I liked the comments about us seeing doctrine "more as vague guidance" and the "MoD spending its time marking PJHQ's homework". There are some good ones about the airbridge and reserves, as well. Pity the sodding thing isn't searchable, though.
The reason for that, lioes in the tribal culture of the Brit Army - doctrine is alien to the preferred (Officer's) view of the world. No good putting stuff on paper and calling it doctrine, without making the effort to change the mindset - we have steadfastly, for over 20yrs concentrated on the artifacts (doctrine manuals, TTPs blah, blah) without paying the slightest attention to that disconnect.

In effect - if you'll pardon the crude analogy - all the doctrine manuals might as well be user manuals for Apple programs: pointless to have as long as the 'OS' the 'software' installed at Sandhurst and Regimental duty into the heads and hearts of those who drive the CoC is an old version of 'Windows'
 
#14
The British Army mindset or "group think" is to stick on-message and write/swallow doctrine that "less is more". Thus the clever idea to invade and occupy half a country (30m population, 170k sq miles) using only a Div(-) running on peacetime exercise establishments, and with no plan or resources to provide a government and infrastructure - whilst steadfastly ignoring about 90 years' worth of relevant experience, including three occasions in the very same territory....

Ditto for Herrick. No point in observing any "lessons learnt", even from ongoing ops in another theatre.
 
#15
The British Army mindset or "group think" is to stick on-message and write/swallow doctrine that "less is more". Thus the clever idea to invade and occupy half a country (30m population, 170k sq miles) using only a Div(-) running on peacetime exercise establishments, and with no plan or resources to provide a government and infrastructure - whilst steadfastly ignoring about 90 years' worth of relevant experience, including three occasions in the very same territory....

Ditto for Herrick. No point in observing any "lessons learnt", even from ongoing ops in another theatre.
Well, I have posted (repeatedly) on other threads about Farrar-Hockley Jnr (of Goose Green 'fame') saying after the FI war was over, that it was "unique" and so "nothing could be learned from it" so I won't disagree with you.

On t'other hand, one thing you have to hand to the Spams, is their Army Lessons Learned system (I have a link somewhere - stand by), and - as demonstrated under Petraeus - their ability to translate experience into theory, theory into doctrine and doctrine into practice on the ground.

We seem still to be trapped in a world where "good tactics" is code for "the opinion of the senior officer present".
 
#16
Whilst I'm not disagreeing with you on this one Stonker, do you think that may be we've done this particular subject before?
 
#18
Well, that (and the size of the download) is due to the fact that - despite this being the 21st Century - they have uploaded as a PDF file, a scanned copy of printed paper - instead of using a simple program like ScanSoft PDFCreate to transform the Word original to a smaller, searchable PDF file: almost makes you feel that they don't really want anyone to read it . . . . .
I'd actually guess they were concerned about people undoing any redaction. But I agree with your suggestion re the core motivation.
 
#20
I'd actually guess they were concerned about people undoing any redaction. But I agree with your suggestion re the core motivation.
YOu take the Word document

You chop

You show what is chopped

You PDF it

You publish

It is redacted

It is conveniently searchable . . . .

That said, it is only the second decade of the 21st Century. It is entirely possible that there are SO1s and SO2s/Sybils out there who (aged 30/40-plus) still don't understand how such things work . . . given that the technology has only been available since they were at school.

Interesting thought: back in the day, the Church/State tried to stop Caxton's infernal machine having an effect.

Is it possible that these days, MoD/gunmint tries to achieve the same end, but by claiming unfamiliarity/incompetence with the new technology?

I smell herring.
 

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