Time for a reservist call up?

wedge_cadman

War Hero
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#1
Today's Times in the opinion section Richard Williams asking for a mobilisation of the reserve.

Can't do linky thing.

The RAF Reserve pilots and support staff to sustain ops in libya and for the government to be more creative to solve the conflict between budgets and men than the preservation of the status quo. (not the ageing rockers)
 
#2
That would expose them to the suggestion that they have failed to maintain the Armed Forces at proper levels, so I wouldn't expect it to happen. Or at least, not in an overt manner.
 
#5
Ok call us up, but I don't think there is a infrastructure to support a mass mobilization of the reserve forces.
It'd work out cheaper in the long-run if they used it as an excuse to cull the biffs. The fitter & more keen TA members would welcome a compulsory mobilisation from the sound of things, as at the moment many have to volunteer to be mobilised which risks their civilian jobs.

The people who wouldn't pass the medical or fitness requirements - or who couldn't hit a barn door - are what's holding the TA back and they'll be no great loss. I know of a TA RSM who has a colostomy bag. No offence to the bloke, but he'll never be deployed so why does he wear the uniform?
 
#8
It'd work out cheaper in the long-run if they used it as an excuse to cull the biffs. The fitter & more keen TA members would welcome a compulsory mobilisation from the sound of things, as at the moment many have to volunteer to be mobilised which risks their civilian jobs.

The people who wouldn't pass the medical or fitness requirements - or who couldn't hit a barn door - are what's holding the TA back and they'll be no great loss. I know of a TA RSM who has a colostomy bag. No offence to the bloke, but he'll never be deployed so why does he wear the uniform?
Couldn't agree with you more. I'm amazed that RSM is still in considering he's wearing that piece of medical kit. The nature of the organization is to support the regular army on operations. The need to retain the biffs for home defense in a HSF sort of organization has gone. So in turn a call up or even a mobilization excercise could help cull the biffs and mongs. Thus lowering the numbers saving cash, which seems to be the nature of life in the military at the moment.

Sent from my iPhone so excuse my crap spelling etc.
 
#10
Depends who they are after. I strongly suspect that supporting a prolonged air campaign, heavy on the ISTAR and other such abbreviations, requires specialists with very specific skills. So no mass mobilisation, more a focus on very specific and possibly shallow pools.

The Regular Reserve is of limited utility for this. It doesn't take long for skills to fade and the retraining time needed could be quite significant. Of course, in reality the system doesn't know where they live and the MoD has given up using them in any meaningful way. (Those that get in touch and ask for a tour are however used where possible, don't think I'm ignoring them.) That means though that - absent a sudden rush by recently ex-RAF to rejoin the overheated TG they just bailed out of or were made redundant from - the Regular Reserve can't deliver more than it does now, not that amounts to much numerically.

So the Volunteer Reserves are your only credible source of gap fillers. Again. Unless it is politically acceptable to use ex-whatevers as contractors. Very do-able, but not cheap.

Now the specialists you need will tend to be older (*), which means job/family are the gatekeepers, which means "my country needs me" will play far better than "I fancy a gap year". So a return to involuntary mob will probably be the only way forward if they can't find enough volunteers.

(*) The 18 year old with two decades of relevant experience is the ideal candidate for most military posts, although somewhat problematic to get hold of.

In the end, as always, the details are what will drive it. The percentage of deployable bods relative to establishment in such units is usually pretty damn small (long, detailed rant on why available on request) and there are no alternatives out there. Infantry units can bulk their ORBAT with trained Inf from anywhere at a pinch, a specialist TG cannot. Well, maybe other services can be raided for their specialists (I'm thinking Int here) but even so they're not overflowing or undertasked either.

So it will hinge on whether enough senior Officers/politicians have the stones to admit we are overstretched and cannot support current commitments with current forces. I fear that what we will see is a campaign of moral blackmail aimed at specialists asking them to sacrifice their careers and family to save politicians and Very Senior Officers embarassment.
 
#11
I'm sure you do :roll:
I wish it was a wind-up too! He is, or hopefully was, with RMP(TA) although it was 5 or 6 years ago that I last spotted him on a parade. The unit he was with was mobilised for TELIC, losing one member if I remember correctly.
 
#12
It will never happen until you cease to pay costs incurred when covering salaries - I know too many people mobilised as Ptes or equivalent who have high powered city jobs. It makes no sense to pay people £100K a year plus to do an op tour which could be done by someone on £20k. (spoken as a reservist who has been mobilised and done HERRICK).
 
#13
It will never happen until you cease to pay costs incurred when covering salaries - I know too many people mobilised as Ptes or equivalent who have high powered city jobs. It makes no sense to pay people £100K a year plus to do an op tour which could be done by someone on £20k. (spoken as a reservist who has been mobilised and done HERRICK).
And ceasing to cover salaries will prevent a lot of people who are currently filling critical gaps in the Regular orbat from being rationally able to mobilise (and if that means having to jack the TA in - well, guess what - but employer exemptions are available for comp mob too!) Spoken as a reservist who has been mobilised multiple times, all bar one for an op theatre (although one of those was OCULUS right at the end, so not exactly dangerous) - including HERRICK and TELIC.
 
#14
It will never happen until you cease to pay costs incurred when covering salaries - I know too many people mobilised as Ptes or equivalent who have high powered city jobs. It makes no sense to pay people £100K a year plus to do an op tour which could be done by someone on £20k. (spoken as a reservist who has been mobilised and done HERRICK).
Do they really cover salaries up to that kind of level? I am sure that when I looked at it they covered up to around £35k. But not those kind of figures. Or was that just my employer's rule?

I only ask because I toyed with rejoining the TA about 3 years ago, before I got too old. My wife's hardest objection was that we couldn't afford to lose income if I, to quote her, "ever went off fullfilling cold war fantasies 20 years too late. You forget you're too fat to be Union Jack Jackson now"

(and no I am not a fictional Royal Marine Walt)
 
#15
Do they really cover salaries up to that kind of level? I am sure that when I looked at it they covered up to around £35k. But not those kind of figures. Or was that just my employer's rule?
Non-medics, earnings are covered up to £200k, medics up to £300k (earnings being your civvy salary including overtime & any bonus you'd forgo by mobilising, plus your TA pay).

In the old days, there were 2 limits of top-up - one for Capts and below and one for Majs and above. The lower limit was only a couple of quid a day above the top pay rate for a Capt (without any specialist pay.) After that, you were on what I seem to recall was "Hardship Award".
 
#16
Non-medics, earnings are covered up to £200k, medics up to £300k (earnings being your civvy salary including overtime & any bonus you'd forgo by mobilising, plus your TA pay).

In the old days, there were 2 limits of top-up - one for Capts and below and one for Majs and above. The lower limit was only a couple of quid a day above the top pay rate for a Capt (without any specialist pay.) After that, you were on what I seem to recall was "Hardship Award".
Thank you. That is one hell of a commitment to cover. Certainly rules out the "I can't afford to go argument" altogether. Presumably if they are paying that out they'd have to really justify why they need your services ahead of someone else.
 
#17
Why the need for reservists call up? These guys could be asked first if they want go, no doubt most will want to go anyway , but like was said earlier , mobilise the TA with compulsory call ups, granted alot of these guys have been involved in conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan lately and do their roles with excellent comittment and on par with their regular counterparts. As mentioned before, it could cull out the lame and lazy hangers on which every unit has , this is not a reflection of their fitness , but of their character and comittment ! You know who you are. Plenty of TA soldiers are eager to mobilise on tour , but due to work or family comittment would find it difficult. I personally would welcome compulsary call ups for TA , would get me away from the Mrs for a good while for a start!!!!
 

Grumblegrunt

LE
Book Reviewer
#19
its not just the salary to cover though they also now have to arrange for your job to be covered as well and pay for any retraining you might need whan you return. back when the TA was a decent size you could always guarantee filling the numbers with general call out for volunteers.
 
#20
Call up the reservists, see how many answer.....

I am beyond my liability now, but I certainly would not have answered when I was within the time frame. I know I was not the only one, and I doubt I am the only one on here.
I never answer the letters asking for my info.

A former regtl 2IC when I was a junior capt was heavily involved in reserve mobilisation planning (for the Balkans). The logistics of this were considerable and IIRC a major part of the estimate was how much time would be spent at court appearances for personnel refusing to report. The belief was - a lot.

IMHO mobilising unwilling reserves for anything other than highly specialised niche roles is a non starter unless we are contemplating 'local' war or national calamity on a huge scale.
 

Top