As part of changes brought about by the Future Land Combat System document, Brigade Combat Teams will be formed as self-sufficient tactical combat units.

In a now deleted section of their website (perhaps the details were revealed a bit too early as the defence white paper accompanying the Integrated Review isn’t released untiul the 22nd of March), the British Army discussed the changes that will soon be implemented as part of the Integrated Review.

The Future Land Combat System is a document which sets out how the Army will fight in more details.

Future Land Combat System has six priority areas according to the British Army website:

1.  The Army must be able to work – and fight – across all domains, including space and cyber, and with allies and partners. The Army must anticipate a crisis and respond quickly, using Land Regional Hubs and a range of different forces such as Intelligence, for information on a rapidly changing situation, or Logistics, to deliver supplies to British or partner troops.

2.  The Army will prevent war where possible by acting as a deterrent or by working in ‘below the threshold’ operations.

3.  Smaller units and their commanders will be able to operate more self-sufficiently, in order to adapt and respond quickly.

4.  The Army will reduce the risk associated with mass troops, by physically dispersing, by using electronic deception to effectively ’hide’ their electronic footprint from the enemy or keeping troops further away from the enemy by using precision strikes.

5.  The Army must be well-trained for urban operations, which are set to become more of a focus in the future.

Brigade Combat Teams (BCTs) will be formed as self-sufficient tactical combat units.

“In order to be able to operate and fight in the way described in the Future Land Combat System document, the Army will be organised differently. Brigade Combat teams will be self-sufficient tactical units with the ability to work across the Army, partners across government, allies and industry.”

The website also adds:

“When it does go to war, the future British Army must be more lethal and more agile than ever before, in order to fight and win, and to reduce the risk to frontline troops. Combat forces will be made up of armoured troops – using modern armoured vehicles. Mechanised and infantry soldiers will be tasked with seizing and holding complex or urban terrain. Air assault operations and raids will be able to help us win the battle in difficult terrain.

Our close combat forces will be supported at a distance with a range of lethal and non-lethal capabilities such as, artillery strikes, attack helicopters and Uncrewed Aerial Systems (UAS). Increasingly automated logistics will support troops closer to the front line, and counter-UAS, counter-missile and chemical biological radioactive and nuclear (CBRN) capabilities will provide a protective system which can identify and react to different kinds of attacks: from conventional, cyber or chemical weapons.”

A series of Land Regional Hubs will be established where a ‘persistent presence’ of units will occur.

“Developing a series of Land Regional Hubs is a critical step to deliver an Army that is more engaged globally. Land Regional Hubs are part of Defence’s Global Hubs concept; they are a network of physical bases across the world with forward-deployed troops. The Hubs will often be in areas where the British Army already has an established physical base or presence. At the heart of Land Regional Hubs is the idea of ‘persistent presence’.

Land Regional Hubs will provide a platform for regional projection and will ensure that the Army supports the Government’s global ambition; increasing regional understanding, enhancing UK engagement and regional partnerships, strengthening alliances, constraining adversaries and generating prosperity. Land Regional Hubs will be supported by a digital network. This network will provide a globally connected system and act as a deterrent and early warning system for instability abroad. This might mean using cyber or intelligence gathering from the UK to provide information and analysis – such identifying potential terrorist activity, or mapping conflict hotspots using data analysis – that means we are ready to support or fight using the troops on the ground at the different Land Regional Hubs.”

Security Force Assistance Units will be formed to deliver training and logistics to partner nations, and will be routinely deployed across the world.

“Relationships and trust cannot be surged in a crisis but must be built and strengthened by continuous and meaningful engagement over time. This is not only an organisational change but a cultural change too, with the Army adopting a campaigning approach to all activity overseas.

The Army will no longer simply deploy on an isolated exercise and immediately return home. Instead, enabled by these Land Regional Hubs, soldiers will be able to deploy for several months to a region to exercise and conduct additional regional activity.

For example, delivering capacity building with partners and proxies as part of constant competition or perhaps supporting UK industry through the demonstration of equipment. Training or logistics and infrastructure support will be delivered by Security Force Assistance units. These units will be routinely deployed across the world, working with allies and other partner nations to help stabilise nations or fight extremism. By working to improve like-minded Armed Forces through training, advising and building relationships, we seek to help tackle the sources of instability at earliest stages, and deter people who seek to threaten that stability.”

A Global Response Force will be formed to react to a range of crises at a moment’s notice.

“A more global Army will be supported by a very high readiness Global Response Force which will be ready to respond to the full range of crises from humanitarian relief through to combat operations.”

Army Special Operations Forces shall be created to support UK Special Forces with cyber, electronic warfare and information operations capabilities.

“Added to this, we will develop Army Special Operations forces, which are specially trained units with the skills to deal with high-risk environments. They will support UK Special Forces with cyber, electronic warfare and information operations capabilities, through special reconnaissance and human analysis.”

The Army Reserve will take the lead in delivering the Army’s contribution to national resilience.

“The British Army is a part of the fabric of the nation. Although soldiers are deployed on operations and exercised worldwide, the Army supports local communities at home, including flooding response, London 2012 Olympics and recently as part of the Government’s COVID-19 response. The Army’s ceremonial duties, like those on Horse Guards Parade in London, or at Edinburgh Castle, are a valued part of our culture, heritage, and tourist industry.

We are actively involved in the community, from Cadets (the economic value of wellbeing through being in the Cadets has been measured at £83m per year), to Reservists and Regular soldiers. Our bases and Reserve Units are dotted around the country; they provide a network of local knowledge and support to the community and to other organisations, like the emergency services. As the Reserves are transformed to fulfil a modernised and fully integrated warfighting role, they will also take a leading role in delivering the Army contribution to national resilience.”

The Army will reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

“The Army owns and maintains around 1.8% of the land in the UK. We have a responsibility to look after the land, wildlife and buildings we own. This includes our responsibility and commitment to sustainability and the environment. We have committed to reaching net zero Greenhouse Gas emissions by 2050, minimising our emissions while maintaining our military capability.

This will be achieved through ambitious projects such as Project Prometheus, and through working with local partner organisations on projects to protect local peatland and heathland across the UK. Prometheus is a pilot scheme exploring the use of solar electricity generation. It will see the installation of solar farms on up to 4 Army sites: Baker Bks – Thorney Island, Duke of Gloucester Barracks – South Cerney, Rock Barracks, Woodbridge and Defence School of Transport, Leconfield and will begin generating energy by later this year, along with ongoing work on a mixed energy supply. The plan is to roll Prometheus pilot out to a further 72+ sites in the future.”

An Army Industrial Strategy will be created and set out the Army’s relationship with industry.

“The new Army Industrial Strategy will set out how the Army will work more effectively with industry. It will allow more of a focus on innovation and on digital systems. This is the first time the Army has formally set out its relationship with industry. The Army will work more openly and with greater collaboration with cutting-edge technologies. It will invest in research and development, where the UK’s world-leading status has most commercial potential, for example in protective armour, sensors, hybrid electrics and mission systems.

The Army Warfighting Experiment, and new projects like the Army Battle Lab, bring soldiers together with military experts, scientists and industry. The Army Warfighting Experiment is the Army’s series of flagship trials of emerging, experimental or conceptual technology, which will determine which technologies are adopted. Investing in cutting-edge technologies will drive the Army’s commitment to sustainability and will be a catalyst for lowering its lower carbon footprint. Through pioneering the development of ‘green’ technologies, the Army will achieve zero petrol and diesel vehicles by 2035. This investment will help to sustain up to 10,000 jobs across the four nations of the United Kingdom, putting money into local economies, and retaining and developing skills. It is also seeking to promote prosperity by increasing exports and providing a boost the UK economy.”

What else?

The website adds that the Army will be more global in its perspective, its operations and its partnerships.

“We can help protect the UK by working more abroad; we will be deployed across the world to the places which matter most to the UK. We will maintain an ongoing presence across the world – known as ‘persistent presence’ – which will help prevent conflict and humanitarian crises. Through persistent presence, we will be better able to anticipate and respond to events across the world; it will help us act quickly if we need to fight and act as a deterrent to our adversaries.”

The Army will improve its ability to operate below the threshold of conflict, through activities that are designed to deter and engage on the global stage without escalating to declaration of war.

“This might mean operating in cyberspace or providing a show of physical strength on land and air. A new Land Special Operations capability – which over time will be selected from across the Army – will blend physical presence with remote digital information activities to add to the capability of our partners and check the advance of hostile states and violent extremists. Our operations will promote our prosperity and demonstrate new technology to strengthen alliances. It will provide expertise and reassurance to partners and allies, and will allow us to build better and stronger international relationships. To do this we must be agile; acting quickly and decisively, with the right equipment and people, in order to de-escalate a crisis, or to move to war footing if required.”

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Harry Bulpit

Sounds suspicious. Almost as if we will lose all real ground warfare capabilities besides SF and Paras.

maurice10

I don’t think so Harry, but some programmes will possibly be trimmed back, to pay for the Global Royal Navy. It looks as if the lads and lassies will be doing more jungle training with the emphasis on the Far East being a big part of the Army’s future?

Harry Bulpit

It seems possible. However, I can’t see our ground forces being of much use in a conflict over there. Given the distances involved I I doudt we could deploy and support any force greater the a reinforced brigade. That’s also with an exceptionally vulnerable supply line. On top of this if we begin deploying large amounts of forces to the region for an extended time then we would need to create civilian infrastructure such as schools and housing. Thats even if families are willing to put up with the inconvenience.

maurice10

You know Harry, what you described could be exactly what the long-term plan is all about? Just as the UK established under the British Empire and post-empire, a number of semi-permanent establishments to underwrite trade and diplomatic agreements? The UK could return to the policy of boots on the ground to underwrite trade and diplomatic agreements? We’ve already seen two RN establishments built in the Middle East, so why not elsewhere? A return to globally stationed military units would demonstrate long-term trust and stable relations. What goes around, comes around I guess?

maurice10

Sorry for repeating myself, that’s what comes when you don’t proofread before posting……or old age!!!

Harry Bulpit

This is possible. But it would take an incredible amount of man power and personal. All of which would be dedicated to one area with little flexibility. Its also worth noting the effects on family. It was find back in the old days when children and wives did as they where told, and did so with a smile. But if the army started demanding that a large percentage of military families uprooted themselves to far flung corners of the world, while abandoning their children in boarding schools 1000s of miles away. I can imagine divorce lawyers would start setting up… Read more »

Graham Moore

General Dannatt said in Saturday’s Telegraph we could not deploy a warfighting division either now or in 2025 – hence the emphasis on the brigade level.
There has always been a Ghurka bn in Brunei. Even if we increased the presence in the Far East, asis mooted, I don’t see formed units doing 2-3 year tours out there, so no big infrastructure. Maybe a 1-year unaccompanied tour as per IMATT in Sierra Leone? or 6-month tours as is common in the Falklands or on emergency tours.

Gareth

I think it is suspicious and potentially an attempt to obscure what seams to be an illogical position which is that the Integrated Review identifies Russia as the main threat to UK security. Russia of course possesses some very effective modern armoured formations in the Western Military district and with all the good will in the world you can’t stop formations like that with Brigade Combat Teams on their own – you need your own armoured formations too and it seems as though we’re going to lose quite a lot of ours.

Harry Bulpit

You are indeed correct. Although it’s worth noting Russian forces are increasingly unrestrained and short of man power. According to some analysts for every division Russia can only deploy 1 brigade.

Paul T
Harry Bulpit

I’ve already seen it but thank you anyway.

TrevorH

It’s up to Georgia and Ukraine and Poland and Germany and France to face Russian tanks, not that they are going to roll.

dan

They can’t do that if the West continues to deny them top class weapons.

Graham Moore

If Russia invades a NATO country (eg a Baltic state), which seems unlikely, then Article 5 is called and we all come to the party, but if we only have 112 tanks deployed in two Type 56 tank regiments (no matter what the BCTs look like), the other countries you mention will be doing the lion’s share of the work, until the US Army arrives – could be a couple of years late, though.

TrevorH

So how many thousand tanks do you want? Which NATO country will they invade. Do you thing that 12,000 tanks are going to magic up on the borders of Poland overnight? Why? Many of its conscripts are thick and ignorant.

Russia have excuses to peddle about Russian speaking people in the Baltic and bordering Ukraine and Georgia. The Baltic is an area where we can assist, and Norway. The rest of Europe have assets if they want to use them elsewhere.

Graham Moore

Trevor, I don’t think I suggested we should have thousands of tanks. The most we have had in the last 50 years is 900 (Chieftains). I would say a figure in the 300-375 range in total (comprising: deployed, stored as war reserve and training fleets) would be about right if we are to have a highly effective counter-weight to a tank-heavy opponent such as, but not restricted to, Russia. I do not for a minute think the Russians would drag every one of their tanks, including the obsolete, obolescent and broken down ones to the Polish border. But I think… Read more »

Caspian237

I think it is an acceptance that the most likely threat from Russia is the kind of hybrid warfare that they employed in Eastern Ukraine the Crimea and Syria. That is, the so called, little Green men providing the high-tech back bone and knowhow to local forces supported by varying levels of heavy equipment and air power.

In fact I think this is the same model that this review envisages for globally deployed Brigade Combat Teams, educated somewhat by the recent conflict in Negorno-Karabakh.

Gareth

True but Russia did deploy plenty of conventional forces in these conflicts too and their use of modern artillery barrages and electronic warfare, as well as modern armour, were very effective on the battlefield – check out the Battle of Debaltseve and this piece in Forbes:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidaxe/2020/08/05/the-ukrainian-army-learned-the-hard-way-dont-idle-your-tanks-when-the-russians-are-nearby/

Caspian237

Thanks for the article link it was a very interesting read. I think, however, that it is highlighting more the eclipse of the traditional armoured formations. Don’t idle you tanks when the Russians are around because they will be eliminated from afar by UAV guided artillery and electronic warfare.

Last edited 10 days ago by Caspian237
Martin

Unless that Russian armour can swim its more of a threat Eastern Europe than the UK. The EU has half a billion people and some of the best military technology in the world. It’s easily capable of dealing with Russia (it’s almost 5 times its size and 20 times its GDP) All it needs to do is reach on to its own pocket and perhaps stop funding Russia’s military with new gas pipelines. The EU has made its position clear to both the UK and the US that it does not want outside assistance. Russia is a nuclear and hybrid… Read more »

Dern

And it’s all part of NATO, and an attack on any one NATO nation is an attack on all. Congratulations you are advocating the dissolution of NATO.

Martin

Not advocating its dissolution merely stating the obvious, the EU is massive Russia tiny, the focus of the UK defence budget should not be on stationing armoured divisions in Poland or the Baltic’s. The EU seems happy to work with Russia and China so I don’t see a need for the UK to sweat about the EU’s eastern boarder too much given the relaxed nature shown by EU member states on the issue.

Dern

You state an opinion that says we should abandon our NATO obligations to Europe, that’s advocating the dissolution of NATO.

TrevorH

No he is not. Can you read?
He is only saying that we can only do our bit and in our way. Indeed we still do more than our bit compared with some.

Dern

Unlike you, yes I can. He’s advocating a specific course of action that is saying saying “abandon Europe to it’s own devices.” Sadly a position that has become quite common in the UK.

TrevorH

No. He is saying Europe should spend like we are. It should. We can do our bit and we are.

Dern

You mean like it should have multiple members in the top 10 military spenders world wide… Oh wait it does.
In fact until Boris’s recent uplift in spending several European countries where spending more than us, and unlike us, have been year on year increasing their military budgets.
The recent spending uplift is really welcome in the UK, but, unlike some narratives keep suggesting, until recently it was European countries who where spending more every year, and the UK that was spending less.

Last edited 8 days ago by Dern
TrevorH

UK is one of relatively few countries that meet their 2% GDP figure. We are 4th highest. Certainly some countries have raised theirs proportionately, but from a low base.

Graham Moore

Very true Trevor. Its a pity that we do not get as much bang for the buck as other nations eg France.

Dern

Not really, Germany and France have for years either been in the vicinity of, or outspending the UK military budget.
2% GDP is almost entirely irrelevant except for people who want to see NATO made obsolete. It was a voluntary target that has been abused and misrepresented as a mandatory figure by Trump to justify NATO skeptisism.
What’s more important is how much is actually being spent, and, most importantly, what capabilities that puts on the ground.

TrevorH

With greatest respect I regard your comments as absurd. And the 2% has got nothing to do with Trump. As a communal defence pact, members should pay proportionately what they can afford and most, not least Germany, do not.

Dern

The 2% guideline was just that, a voluntary guideline for countries to aim for. Trump was the one who, for his own (largely domestic) political ends rebranded it as a mandatory lower limit and anyone who wasn’t making it wasn’t “doing their part.” There’s nothing absurd about that, other than certain Anti-EU parties within the UK leapt upon that bandwagon with glee. Again, Germany for several years outspent the UK, and has consistently been in the Top 10 defence spenders in the world. In real terms that’s what matters, not some political football set loose. (And for the record yes,… Read more »

TrevorH

You are digging up Trump for no sound reason. Obama complained about Europe defence spending in 2016. saying it was ‘complacent’

In 2019 the UK accounted for 16% of Europe defence spending

Dern

I’m not digging him up for no reason, I’m digging him up because he’s relevant to the discussion of the 2% guideline. Please try to keep up I know it’s difficult for you.

You do understand that the UK spending 16% of defence expenditure isn’t incompatible with anything that I’ve said? In other words the three top spenders in Europe (UK inclusive) between them spend about 48% of Europes defence budget. That sounds about right. So that’s a little “fact” you’ve just thrown out with zero context because it makes us sound good.

TrevorH

Trump is irrelevent. USA regularly moan about other NATO spending.

NATOs figures do not show the likes of France and Germany in a good light.

OOA

would Like to know which countries in Europe were spending more than us please

Dern

Until recently both Germany and France where spending more, and where increasing their budgets. Luckily Boris has reversed a 30 year trend in the UK, but while Germany seems pretty set to keep steadily increasing it’s military budget as it has for over a decade, it’s an open question if Boris’s spending uptick will continue after he leaves.

OOA

I’m not sure where you’re getting your facts from but they don’t appear to be credible sources. I suspect you’re just making things up. Please tell us all what the source is for your assertions on other European nations spending more than the UK ‘Until recently’.

Dern

Well I did actually provide a link to back up my claims if you care to scroll, but hey, at least I have facts to give, unlike you who is just peddeling an uniformed opinon with absolutely nothing to back it up. Take care.

OOA

Sorry if I was a bit abrupt. I’ve been trying to post a reply with a link but I can’t for some reason. In short, I don’t believe the statista numbers; if you want to know about NATO spend, ask NATO. You’ll have to google it I’m afraid but you get a report called: PR/CP(2020)104 Defence Expenditure of NATO Countries (2013-2020) In this you’ll see that using a common measurement standard, the UK has consistently outspent other European countries – no matter if you look at money of day, constant 2015 money or normalised for purchasing power, it’s the same… Read more »

TrevorH

Well according to NATO figure in $ at constant 2015 prices & exchange rates ….
UK was 66 billion. Germany 50 billion . France 48 billion.

As far as % change, Germany has risen quite a bit in the last decade. But it has underspent criminally before that.

Germany’s defence spending per capita is miserable compared to the UK. France is making a vague effort but still well below ours.

Dern

Until this year all three hovered around 50billion, with the UK trailing slightly behind France and Germany (UK 48 billion, France 50 billion, Germany 51 billion), it’s only been this year with Boris’s reversal that we can claim to be outspending the others (ignoring our own creative accounting).
https://www.statista.com/statistics/262742/countries-with-the-highest-military-spending/
(Worth noting that, not including the UK, the top three European Defence spenders outspend Russia by about 2:1, at which point the question really needs to be asked: How much do we need to outspend Russia by?)

Last edited 6 days ago by Dern
Graham Moore

IN %age terms of GDP, Estonia and Greece sometimes spend more than UK.

In cash terms we have often been the biggest spender in Europe but in 2019, France and Germany out-spent us ($50.1Bn and $49.3Bn compared to UKs $48.7Bn)

https://www.statista.com/statistics/262742/countries-with-the-highest-military-spending/

A major problem is that we never get much bang for the buck, for all sorts of reasons, none of them good or acceptable.

Graham Moore

I like your answers, Dern. The 2.1%of GDP that we spend is a fudged figure anyway. Veterans pensions are included (yet they do not contribute to capability) and some non-Defence intelligence spending (but no-one will admit to that). Also, the Treasury used to cover the cost of the nuclear deterrent – now the Royal Navy has to cover it – that’s particulalry expensive right now as we not only maintain the in-service boats/warheads but start to spend on replacing the same (and then there are the extra nuclear missiles that Boris wants to buy). I would imagine we really spend… Read more »

John Stevens

The EU population and economy is many times larger than Russia, but geographically – Russia is way bigger than the EU. Russia is the largest Country on the planet.

Martin

Does that make Canada a super power? Realistically big country small population is a big military weakness, more area to defend less people to do it.

TrevorH

The USA and Canada combined, ie North American Continent, are larger in land area than Russia and both have huge shale oil reserves. America is only a few kilometers away from Russia, Canada is not much further.

John Stevens

Hi TrevorH

I was really just making the point – Russia was the largest country in the world. Agree with you about economy and so on. Just talking about geography previously. I bet Putin regrets Alaska being sold to the USA by the Czars. I once did a trip by ship from Vancouver Island, most of the way along the west side of Canada up to/very near Alaska. Beautiful country Canada.

TrevorH

Sadly I am to old I think and inpecunary to do those sorts of trips.🤨

Graham Moore

We don’t have a deployable armoured division anymore, let alone several.
We deploy a BG based on an armd inf bn in Estonia (754 pers; I think BG includes just one sqn of 14 tanks).
We deploy a lt recce sqn in Poland with some loggies (140 pers).

Gareth

“liquid sunshine buckets” – might have to borrow that one!

Graham Moore

The EU does not have a seriously large military arm. Not all EU nations contribute to EU military missions. We are talking about NATO to reply to Russian expansionism, not the EU.

Martin

If you add up everything the EU does have it is pretty respectable, it has about 1.3 million military personal vs the USA with about 1.3 million and Russia at just 1 million and while those EU forces are not at the same level as the US they are light years ahead of what Russia has on mass. The EU operates an exterior boarder with the rest of the world (FRONTEX) so having military capability to defend that common boarder make sense. Certainly with help from NATO allies such as the US and UK but principally looking to itself. All… Read more »

Paul T

Like many you are making the mistake of comparing Russia to the EU and NATO purely in numbers – Russia doesn’t do War by committee,it has a Unified Political and Military Structure,a Ruthless Leadership that is not Answerable to its Electorate in the same way that other ‘Western’ Democracies are – look at what happened in Crimea,would any other Country have the Guile and the Balls to Pull that Operation off ?.

Graham Moore

These Brigade Combat Teams (I love the shameless and belated copying of US terminology/concept) must have some armour in them, or they are pointless against a peer opponent. Perhaps we go even closer to the US terminology where they have Armored BCTs and Stryker BCTs – we could have our equivalent ie perhaps two Armoured BCTs with CR2 & WR/Boxer, and some Strike BCTs with Ajax and Boxer. Hopefully Boxer with a cannon, of course. Even with our allies, that’s still not a lot to bother an opponent with thousands of tanks (and they aren’t all obsolete or broken down,… Read more »

Callum

I was thinking the same thing with the terminology. I’m not sure why the sudden change though, to the best of my knowledge the British Army already employed the same concept and just called it a battlegroup

Graham Moore

A Battlegroup is of course a Lt Col’s command of mixed arms and services. Typically 2 – 4 BGs will be found in a brigade.

TrevorH

I do not see where you get that. You sound blinkered.

Indeed the Special Forces Assistance Forces seems an excelent idea.

Dern

Do you mean the Special Operations Forces or the Security Force Assistance Units?

TrevorH

I may have mistyped it…. the Special Operations Forces, not the one training overseas troops.

Dern

No worries, was just curious.

Graham Moore

Why do you say that Harry? A Brigade Combat Team is a ground warfare formation, and the article says: “Combat forces will be made up of armoured troops – using modern armoured vehicles. Mechanised and infantry soldiers will be tasked with seizing and holding complex or urban terrain. Air assault operations and raids will be able to help us win the battle in difficult terrain”.
that looks like ground warfare forces to me.

Harry Bulpit

Because “modern armoured vehicles” could mean anything. Now bare in mind most modern afv have been light MRAP type vehicles like foxhound, and foxhound mounted units are considered to be “mechanised”. As opposed to warrior mounted infantry which is considered “armoured”, it doesn’t sound to promising.

Graham Moore

You could well be right that light armoured vehicles are mooted rather than medium/heavy. However Foxhound is simply a PM patrol vehicle that can only carry 4 dismounts. Its really not going to be doing an assault or ground holding task.

Levi Goldsteinberg

Very promising, level-headed stuff. Kudos George for catching this before it was taken down.

I’ll curb my enthusiasm until the 22nd though, still very apprehensive of our conventional forces being hollowed out

Stuart Crawford

We debated BCTs at Staff College back in the 1980s, so its entirely typical that they may be implemented 30 years later!

Ian C-M

I remember those debates, Stuart! Be fair, 35 years or so is quite a quick decision cycle for the MOD. I think it’s plain though that an emphasis on BCTs recognises the death of a warfighting division…

Graham Moore

Hi Stuart, of course the US has long had this terminology which we have slavishly copied. We already use silly terminology like ‘Line of Departure’ and ‘fires’ when the British terms were far better.
It really points to our being unable to be relied upon to field a modern, strong, well-equipped warfighting division (Gen Dannatt, Saturday’s Telegraph).

Stuart Crawford

Yep!

Mark F

Were do you start? Logistics and support is going to take a hit. This is an earthquake of seismic proportions. I think UK plc is going to be very limited on how to retaliate if we come under sustained attack. Yes I think we need to wait until 22nd for the bigger picture.

TrevorH

So Russian paratroopers are going to drop on us are they?

Robert Blay.

He really is a moral sapper with ever single post 😄

Christopher Allen

With our outdated equipment and vehicles, and increasingly little manpower, they might as well, even more so when we have many (Scot/Welsh nationalists, Remainers, Far-left) who completely hate this country that they would gladly help the Russians.

Last edited 10 days ago by Christopher Allen
Something different

I doubt many among those groups actually would want the help of an authoritarian homophobic regime with little regard if the rights of small nations. If anything it’s the far/alt/hard right that seems to seems to have received aid and sucker from Russia.

farouk

I have wondered if the SNP succeeds in breaking away from the rest of the Island would they in order to gain access to money and trade invite the Russians or even the Iranians to set up in the former RN and RAF bases.

Mark Franks

Whats that got to do with it.

TrevorH

The suggestion was that the UK was/could come under attack.

Graham Moore

At least they would be easy to take out. It’s the (up to) 22,000 tanks and very effective field artillery and air defence artillery I am worried about.

TrevorH

Back in 2002 it was reported that an entire battalions (500 men) worth of 1st yr conscripts were hazed and beaten to death by 2nd yr conscripts. Hazing generally was rife. As a result by 2008 conscription was cut to 12 months. That does not make them very good soldiers … or tankers … does it? In respect of Russia it does not have 22,000 tanks, it alleges that it has 12,000 tanks and 27,000 armoured vehicles. The US has 6000 Abrams and at least 32,000 armoured vehicles. Many, possibly the majority of, Russian tanks therefore are old out dated… Read more »

Graham Moore

I agree that the quality of the Russian soldier (and probably his morale) is far lower than that of our own.

My use of the 22,000 tanks figure is from the Nationmaster website – https://www.nationmaster.com/country-info/stats/Military/Army/Main-battle-tanks
and does beggar belief – it certainly would include obsolete, obsolescent and non-battleworthy tanks – even if true.
The Nationinterest site says 12,000 tanks. Wikipedia says 12,800 tanks. Global Firepower says 13,000 tanks.

I agree that mother Russia has long borders elsewhere to watch over but think it is somewhat dangerous to under-estimate the opposition.

Graham Moore

Not sure about logistics and support being hit – probably. Rumours abound about Warrior upgrade being cut and hence possibly Warriors axed, maybe 50 or more tanks being cut, certainly some infantry battalions lost.

Ross

Although I’m not necessarily against some of these ideas, ties well with the idea of intervention, peacekeeping, domestic civil assistance, and being more flexible and mobile both in deployment and combat… However the obvious issue here is that this sounds like a clear step away from hard power warfighting against a genuine peer enemy (i.e. Russia or something similar). To be clear I’m not suggesting the Army should have the strength on it’s own to combat such a nation, but we need a credible warfighting ability (troops, tanks (yes TANKS), capable armoured units (ones that can actually fire whilst moving),… Read more »

Paul.P

Transformative thinking. Looking forward to the detail next week. Very interested to learn who is happy to host our forward presence and how large they will be. We need to be in the Baltic states or Poland, East and West Africa and Brunei.

Levi Goldsteinberg

Belize too I’d imagine, covers off a logistics area along with the Atlantic territories of Central America, the Caribbean and South America.

Caspian237

I really don’t think we need to be based in the Baltic States or Eastern Europe. Britain should be the regional hub in the European Theatre and deployment of forces should be facilitated through air and naval mobility and the use of the already excellent transport infrastructure that exists. Flexibility and keeping our options open rather than being tied to one spot.

Daniele Mandelli

Doc yesterday said “more equipment pre positioned in Germany.

Overseas hubs? Kenya. Falklands. Ascension. Gib. Cyprus. Oman. We already have them. Beef them up with extra infrastructure and they are invaluable assets.

Paul.P

Agree Kenya.
I don’t see the Falklands as a ‘hub’….just a necessary minimum detachment; and Ascension to get there.
Apart from Russia I see the bad guys needing significant army presence ‘hubs’ are ISIS and co. Hence Kenya, Nigeria, Brunei, Oman. Gib for Intel and RN. Cyprus for the airfield. A couple of P8s with Harpoon II and you influence the entire Med and can put SF in N. Africa and near East which are unstable. QE is the air support for actions in Kenya, Somalia, Mozambique.

Daniele Mandelli

Yes, I agree with your list and wider reasoning.

I included the FalkIands as I myself define a “hub” as one of our overseas installations with strategically vital infrastructure and location, for which to me the FI applies given increased Chinese interest in S America and Argentine claims. So not just army as such and fair enough maybe not valid for this article. At the moment these are known as PJOB “Permanent Joint Operating Bases” and are under PJHQ.

Paul.P

Understood Daniele. All good. The Chinese fishing fleet has been trawling the waters around the Galapagos Islands. Would love to help but have to draw the line somewhere for the RN. The Ecuadorian navy operates what look like 2 Leander class frigates and some Italian built Corvettes. An opportunity for T23 sale perhaps?

Daniele Mandelli

They do? I’ve never studied S American forces apart from the Argentine. The Chinese tentacles spread far and wide.

John Stevens

Chilean navy is one of the most impressive in south America. Has close historical connections with the UK too. They always name some of their ships after our Admirals.. Example (Almirante Cochrane) worth a google.

John Stevens

You may already know about the history, just thought I would mention.

Daniele Mandelli

I didn’t, John, actually.
Thanks.

James Fennell

The current Regional Hubs are Dubai, Singapore and Abuja (Nigeria).Each has a British Defence Staff (an HQ) and they cover the Gulf, Indo-Pacific and West Africa. These new hubs are also to be garrisoned. They came from the 2015 SDSR. FCO and DFID also have regional hubs in New Dehli, Bangkok, Nairobi,Tokyo, Washington, Brussels and Cairo.

Last edited 10 days ago by James Fennell
Daniele Mandelli

That’s all new to me. Thanks. Was only aware of the naval warehouse and RN Party in Singapore.
Abuja is interesting. Will we see a UK version of Camp Lemmonnire? ( spelling?)

TrevorH

Norway and Baltic. And we are working with Sweden with Tempest.

Paul.P

Good idea, solves the problem of how to get rid of the LPDs?

Meirion X

Without the LPDs, the UK would be unable to reinforce Norway with ground forces. Especially when ports have been damaged.
It did Not make sense to send the Only active LPD half way around the world a few years ago, to do that you need two LPDs active.

Rob

Lots of ‘staff’ talk in this. I think they mean that:

  1. Investment in digitally secure networked Army.
  2. The abandonment of the ambition to deploy at Division level.
  3. Cutting 1 Bde.
Jan van der Werk

Well, that’s fairly put Double Dutch into mainstream…Sort of “staff college speke” that says nothing.

geoff

Exactly Jan. Gobbledegook of the first order

Andy P

Looks like more getting palmed off to the reserves. Are the reserves up for all these extra tasks ????

John Clark

I’m certainly seeing a move to smaller deployable, well armed formations here. I cautiously welcome the move in that direction. I have to say, as the Germans leave the world wide fighting to everyone else, let them (and the Polish) concentrate on relatively static Armoured divisions. We are better off being mobile and heavily armed. I’m not convinced MBT’s have much of a future anyway, remember during the Libyan operations when a Tornado GR4 launched a salvo attack of brimstone missiles against an armoured formation and stopped it in its tracks …. Well that was 10 years ago and the… Read more »

Last edited 10 days ago by John Clark
Paul.P

I would fit Brimstone on the AAC Wildcats and RA drones.

John Clark

I don’t think the Watch keeper is capable of carrying Brimstone, but I agree arm everything we can!

Airborne

Watchkeepr has trouble carrying tesco shopping!

Steve R

Smaller formations are fine, a smaller army is fine, as long as it has plenty of firepower to back it up.

Should be using the mantra of: “Always outnumbered, never outgunned!”

John Clark

Absolutely Steve, I’m not happy about a smaller regular Army, but don’t necessarily have an issue with ditching heavy Armour for air mobile firepower.

As you say, ‘never outgunned’, great mantra!

Harry Bulpit

Theres just as many MANPADs as ATGM. Airborne mounted fire power is just as vulnerable and greatly more unreliable then ground armour.

John Clark

Fair point Harry, but even if our imaginary armoured division had layered mobile air defences deployed with them in the field, let’s say long range S400, short range SA8 and mobile Zsu cannon systems, infantry manpads etc, it simply isn’t going to see our 16 F35’s, 50 plus miles away converging from all points of the compass. When they launch their Spear 2’s (do we have a name yet), some will be targeted at the air defence umbrella, the rest will selectively scan for high value targets (tanks) individually, or be handed targets via other platforms. The net result is… Read more »

Glass Half Full

Hey John, you’re saying SPEAR2 but I suspect you mean SPEAR Capability 3? MBDA have named it … wait for it … they call it SPEAR 😉
https://www.mbda-systems.com/product/spear/

John Clark

Ah yes, you are quite right GHS, Spear 3, thanks for the correction mate.

Mark B

Yes. We need some method of assessing how firepower, stealth, mobility, training etc. multiplies the lethality of an Army unit so that people can make sense of, and compare the UK Army to other Armies around the world.

Graham Moore

Exactly. We need a Which? report.

Daniele Mandelli

Agree.

TrevorH

I think this is the point. The advent of the Maxim and Lewis guns meant that the size of the battalion numbers went down but firepower went up.

Pacman27

absolutely and Boxer lends itself to that with changeable modules 120mm Amos Mortar is a must for me as is the 155m gun A problem we have had in the recent past is none of our new equipment is particularly lethal, with a few exceptions. A boxer IFV with a proper cannon (lets assume CTA) the Trophy APS the US is adding to its strikers and a couple of TOW and you have a real platform. 6 dismounts is probably the right amount for comfort and volume of vehicles, as ultimately we need to make the vehicle carry the load… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

I’m hopeful too John. Suspicious, but hopeful!

Pacman27

I agree John A much unarmed Boxer force (CTA, 155m, Brimstone etc etc.) backed up by Apaches is for me a far better force that can get in and out. I would do away with tracks totally and double down on Boxer and order another 60 apaches. When they say BCT’s it will be interesting how they are formed, unfortunately I have very little faith in Gen Carter, who for me is a serial failure who got the army into this. One other thing BCT’s need integrated air power to work – is this coming from the RAF as it… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

That’s the rub, we have so little. Each should have it’s own AAC squadron and RA UAV battery.

We have 34 Wildcat and 50 Apache. UAV a single DH Reg and single Watchkeeper Reg that can barely deploy a battery.

Air Defence even worse.

In my view these elements need massively expanding but they keep salami slicing them to keep the CBM content.

Pacman27

Hey Daniele,

as so often the case I am in total agreement, if HMG are serious about this they need to invest in some of the key enablers, not least long range fires and AIr Defence.

I really fear this is just another set of cuts, packaged as something else.

John Clark

Pacman and Daniele, I also fully concur. A prerequisite of these small agile formations has to be airmobile artillery and an increase in the AH64E buy, a total fleet of 90 would do the trick I should think. They have to be exceptionally well armed and equipped and ready for the fight. They have to include a Typhoon detachment too, unless the carrier is on call. Thanks to Glass half full’s correction of my SPEAR 2 mistake and very interesting link, I noticed the Typhoon graphic with an aircraft carrying 16 Spear 3!!! Now, imagine a group of Typhoons with… Read more »

Last edited 9 days ago by John Clark
Rogbob

Do you realise how expensive AH64 is to operate? Both in direct cost and in logistics. Trying to acheive that would break the Army.

John Clark

I suppose it depends on what goes to fund it, personally, I would get shot of all the heavy armour and Warriors, the Army Wildcat would also be withdrawn, with 15 transferred to the Navy for rework to HMA2 standard, the remainder sold to ‘hopefully’ jump start more international orders for the type. The new AH64E deliveries would then take the scouting roll, with a cheaper off the shelf option (Lakota) for general, light scout/light battlefield transport/liaison use. These could be bought from US Army production slots in much the same way as Apache. The Army would be very happy… Read more »

Rogbob

I agree Wildcat was daft, but we have it and running it is far cheaper than disposing, purchasing new and running that. It’s effectively replaced the Gazelle in scouting and light comms. I’d take the Wildcats off the RN and give them to the Army, they can offer armed capability and a light transport which is more useful than more Apaches. The RN could (as it always wanted and post Type 42 retirement all ships are Merlin sized) go all Merlin and benefit from a single fleet. The costs of Apache are huge – do what you suggest and the… Read more »

John Clark

I hear what you are saying, but many of see the paradigm shift that’s needed here in our Army structure. I take your point regarding the cost of operating AH64E’s re MBT’s, but it becomes irrelevant when you consider the limited usefulness of static Armoured divisions compared to truly globally deployable assets, for an island nation. I think MBT’s for the UK have reached the end of the road to be honest and it’s time to accept it and move on to a mobile and flexible force. If the rumours are true and we are retaining and upgrading a small… Read more »

Graham Moore

Why do you say armoured divisions are static? – all elements are mobile. CR2 can do 60kph on road, 40kph cross-country – lighter vehicles are faster on road.
HETs can move the armour great distances.
Heavy armour moved huge distances in WW2 within a particular Theatre, and modern machines can move faster.

Pacman27

The USMC is going for battle groups of circa 2.4k personnel and I think we should follow this model. what is interesting is how they fully integrate all assets to allow them to create a bubble to operate within. I believe the UK are uniquely suited to this type of operating, but clearly need a fully reorganisation. if we did this I would suggest the following 600 inf 600 CSG 600 Logistics (Drivers, gunners, reme) 600 Air support and Defence Clearly this would need backed up by a set of divisional assets and would mean the RAF becoming far more… Read more »

John Clark

Spot on Pacman, a USMC structured approach is exactly what’s needed.

Graham Moore

Back in the day, we were meant to buy 99 AH-64D but the order was cut to 66. Then they are to be replaced by 50 AH-64E. This always happens – equipment numbers always go down. They will never go up, the exception being that the Navy’s escort numbers may one day nudge above 19.

Airborne

Im into this mate but alas fear its rebranding under a new name. Correctly resourced and equipped this is the way forward, with the ability for each BCT to field 3-4 Battlegroups. However, the absolute lack of enblers and minimal OS support and other key capabilities, as you say mate, make me think its going to be the usual Brigade structure with nice new signs at each camp gate. Im trying to stay positive as this is the way to go, but from experience we all know HMG and Army top brass generally do bare minimum, with no forward thinking… Read more »

Pacman27

unfortunately I agree, I see this as a set of cuts. I am not against a smaller army as long as the deficit is made up with kit that gives us the edge. It doesn’t have to be like that, we can field 6 divisions of circa 15k personnel but 22k of these will need to be RAF to provide the air combat, ISR, AAD and transport required of a modern full manoeuvre Division that has 4 BCT’s within it. Even with 6 Divisions (3 strike, 3 Armour) we are only realistically looking at generating 1 operational division in each… Read more »

Graham Moore

So if the best protected, highly mobile, direct fire weapons platform is no good because there is a counter to it, what do we replace it with?

Also, sadly everything on the battlefield has many counters to it, so perhaps we should also get rid of attack helicopters, medium armour, light army, artillery and the dismounted infantryman.

The Navy has this problem too. A torpedo could sink a carrier or escort, so we may as well scrap the surface fleet.

Jan van der Werk

If reserves were properly funded and organised there is no reason they could not be effective. I did a few years TA service after regular, then latterly in the HSF. We got called all sorts but were well organised and motivated at the local level. In South Africa we had local Kommando units, yet again, really motivated guys who achieved results. People look down on “militia” but in times of crisis at the national and local level, they can be a real asset. Anyone who has exercised with the Norwegian Home Guard will usually admit to that.

Andy P

Hi Jan, I wasn’t maligning reserve forces, I did 5 years or so between my two full time stints and met some great people, some I’m still mates with 20 odd years later. More the lack of numbers in the UK and the increase in roles that this suggested adding more skillsets that would need to be crammed into a training routine. Especially when you have to have a tick in the box/done the right course to do the simplest tasks. I’ve a couple of mates who are off doing covid jabs for the NHS and they had to sit… Read more »

Jan van der Werk

Didn’t take it that way Andy, its just l feel the role of reserves/volunteer like The National Guard in the US could serve the UK well. We had cracking civil defence up until the government defunded it. It just means if there is ever a national need people will basically have to fend for themselves. I personally find that unacceptable, one way to build a sense of citizenship is to have an active reserve of volunteers.
Best wishes.

Andy P

I don’t disagree that some kind of ‘civil defence’ organisation could be useful but I just can’t see it happening in the UK. The forces (including reserves) are a handy pool of people with various skill sets and discipline and are there when required but the UK doesn’t have an equivalent to the National Guard and I doubt there would be the will for it. A civilian based ‘civil defence’ would maybe lack the discipline when required, dunno and obviously that would be a generalisation on my part. Basically I’m not against it in principle but I’m sceptical of how… Read more »

Jan van der Werk

Guess I saw it in South Africa, when really pushed people will step up to the plate. The Cadet Corps gives a good example to me, I get the feeling many younger folk lack any real direction or purpose here now, been like that for a long time. I could ramble and blame lefty teachers, Cadets disappeared from most schools after all. Britain as a whole seems unwilling to consider any form of “service”. You know and I know that the military can give a sense of purpose. Plenty of people in the old TA did not have a regular… Read more »

Ian M.

The headline: British Army ‘to be organised differently’They’re organised now?

Daniele Mandelli

Not really….! Bit lop sided is 1 Div!

Lee Cook

All this sounds interesting, a real “wind of change”. That’s probably what we need, as well as moving away more wholeheartedly from cherished capabilities to ones more in step with our defence needs and financial capacity. But at the same time, an article in the Telegraph from 12 March mentions that a) the Army might retain between 100-150 MBTs, but is cancelling warrior….So Boxers, Challengers, Scout…what sort of hybrid nightmare is going to be born out of that mix? I’m really hoping this is going to be the breath of fresh air the Army so desperately needs and deserves, even… Read more »

BigH1979

I may be wrong but im assuming this is all political spin for personnel cutbacks.

Ive just checked out the personnel figures for the French Army on Wiki and see they have 115,000ish full time and 22,000 reserves. I have no experience of how they operate, do the greater numbers demonstrate a more credible/effective force than the British Army??

My 10 years (1996-2006) in the REME in mainly Armoured Formations led me to believe that while the British Squaddie was well trained and aggressive the kit wasn’t really up to much even then.

Mark B

It is difficult to compare one individual in one Army to one in another. Equipment, motivation and training are the big differences. Perhaps we should stop talking in simplistic terms of number of men and look for a more sophisticated assessment.

BigH1979

Hi Mark. My first reaction was to say that you didn’t read the question in my post correctly. But looking at one of your replies above i have to say i agree with your point. Maybe the general public need to see our forces compared to comparable allies and adversaries in the context of a simple table showing criteria such as: Ability to deploy and support a full armoured brigade worldwide. Ability to deploy and support X number of Fast Jet squadrons worldwide. Ability to deploy and support a CBG or equivalent and X number of Task Groups. Etc. Numbers… Read more »

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Thenautist

Very promising, level-headed stuff. Kudos George for catching this before it was taken down.
I’ll curb my enthusiasm until the 22nd though, still very apprehensive of our conventional forces being hollowed out.www.cash03.com

Thenautist

I’m certainly seeing a move to smaller deployable, well armed formations here. I cautiously welcome the move in that direction. I have to say, as the Germans leave the world wide fighting to everyone else, let them (and the Polish) concentrate on relatively static Armoured divisions. We are better off being mobile and heavily armed. I’m not convinced MBT’s have much of a future anyway, remember during the Libyan operations when a Tornado GR4 launched a salvo attack of brimstone missiles against an armoured formation and stopped it in its tracks …. Well that was 10 years ago and the… Read… Read more »

Ernest Harrison

This is worse that Cameron’s Brigade. All this forward deployment without an increase in troop numbers will leave the UK at risk from not just Russia but a hostile EU. Sounds crazy but a flashpoint could be fishing spats, or Gibraltar. I for one don’t like thee wind of this change. Being some Typhoons will be retired early then we had better fit ‘sidewinders’ to the T1 Hawks as a make do and mend measure. We can only wait and see but if armour is the price for more special ops and a more global presence then we will be… Read more »

Last edited 10 days ago by Ernest Harrison
Robert Blay.

We have two carrier’s, so one is available 365 day’s a year to work around maintenance and refits. And we will probably order more F35B’s post 2025. And I wouldn’t loose any sleep about a hostile EU. They are our closest allies and NATO partners.

Herodotus

Didn’t you used to be the CEO of Racal?

James Fennell

Others will be more qualified, but BCTs sound like WW2 US Army RCTs. They were separate from regimental HQs – i.e. battlegroups were formed around them for different tasks. Maybe thinking to decouple Brigades from fixed ORBATs? Rather have a pool of battalions which can be configured into BCTs for different tactical tasks?

Last edited 10 days ago by James Fennell
Daniele Mandelli

The “Golf Bag” approach, that MoD have called it.

Bad idea. Makes cutting easier and keeping track of whats what harder.

Rogbob

It has erie echos of the 1970s reorg which got rid of Brigades and created 2x Task Forces per Div with a pool of units within the Div flexibly assigned.

On the other hand, the BCT is standard US terminology for combat, conbat support and conbat service support all grouped under a Bde comd. Which I think is how we were pre 2010 when everything was centralised.

James Fennell

Yes thank you, I did some googling and found that out!

Daniele Mandelli

Correct.

I’ve never understood why the CS and CSS units were taken from bde ORBAT and placed centrally in groups in Force Troops.
Much preferred them placed with the combat elements of their brigade.

The 1970s Task Forces. I’ve read of them, but know little. It didnt last long it seems?

Rogbob

I agree, but the reality of these units is regardless of “ownership” they tend to support both a specific brigade, but are also divisional assets and support other fornations front and rear. Hence why they flip flop over the years! A lot of their tasking would come from Div HQ and like artillery, you wouldnt want them sitting still because their formation was quiet whulst a nearby one was being smashed. Its a fluid and complex relationship tbh. The Force Troops centralisation may just have been because of the amount of formation and unit moves as part of A2020 etc… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Got it. Thanks for explanation mate.

AlexS

RCT, Kampfgruppe, Raggrupamento…

Watcherzero

Reportedly they are creating four brigades of ‘Rangers’ organised into two regiments, the brigades will be self sustaining combat units trained to a special forces standard. It looks to be similar to the US Rangers and 1st Airborne in combat organisation but sitting between proper special forces like SAS/Delta Force/SEALs and elite troops like Royal Marines Commandos (which are already superior quality to US formations), Rangers and Airborne in level of training. It sounds like the role they envisage them for is a forward deployed (to combat theatre) rapid reaction force, hot peacekeeping/interventions and and long deployment missions where you… Read more »

Last edited 6 days ago by Watcherzero
Peter S

“Zero petrol and diesel vehicles by 2035”. This mirrors the language and priorities in the integrated review. Boris who only a few years ago wrote sceptical articles about climate change has now swallowed the whole thing.
Moving an 80 ton tank with battery power – really?
But new Type31 frigates with diesel engines .
The army is already so small,its carbon footprint is probably no bigger than a log burner!
This isn’t funny any more. It’s pathetic.

James Fennell

If you can move a 7,000 ton sub with batery power you can probably do 70 too.

Peter S

The latest Japanese submarine is to have lithium batteries instead of AIP. But it isn’t a zero petrol/ diesel boat. It will rely on its diesel engines for normal surface and snorkel movement and to recharge the batteries, like any non nuclear sub.
If the army is looking at hybrid drive like this, why doesn’t it say so?

Pacman27

seem to remember that Qinteq have done a lot of work on wheels with electric motors in for the MOD.

think it is world leading, so maybe that is one of the ways this will be achieved.

having said that Boxer and Ajax have massive deisels and I don’t see them going anywhere soon.

TrevorH

a vehicle is just that, but it does not say armoured vehicle

Peter S

It could mean develop a zero petrol/ diesel vehicle by 2035 but it doesn’t read like that. Curious wording.

BB85

In theory the technology is already there to have all electric patrol vehicles which brings huge benefits in terms on reduced IR signature. The bigger issue is we need to sacrifice protection for range which would mean removing the crew. Remote operation can be blocked and while autonomous technology has come a long way I’m sure malfunctions are still a huge risk compared to human interaction. We don’t want to see judgement day in our lifetimes.

Stephen Ball

I think we in a age where every thing needs to be green, Build more nukes, green solar panels, Fire ammo, But we got green solar panels.

Dakar Electric rally, They use diesel generators to recharge a few battery’s. But its green.

Mike O

This was the main thing I have picked up on. It has so many implications. To be honest I think it is probably referring to hybrid vehicles. I don’t see diesel going away just yet.

Peter S

I’m glad it’s not just me who was taken aback by this. Hybrid vehicles might make some sense.

Glass Half Full

It is awkward wording, but its not really that much of a stretch, if one interprets it to mean that BEVs will start to become part of the fleet by 2035 using zero petrol or diesel, and not that it means all vehicles will be 100% electric. We already have the Tesla Semi prototype with a maximum range of 500 miles and 0-60 mph of 20 seconds with a 36 tonne load. Tesla is already charging its cars at 350kW peak charging. So larger batteries for longer range and systems/sensor power, supporting even faster charging, using something like an HX2… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

“A new Land Special Operations capability – which over time will be selected from across the Army” Paras? SIG? A LI battalion chosen for the role?? I’m always cautious when they band about the word “new” as most often such already exists and it is a rebranding for PR purposes to make headlines. The Army supports SF already. I hope this will see LI battalions fully integrated into BCT’s with the following integral elements: Royal Artillery Gun/Rocket/ISTAR/AD assets. RAC. Jackal Light Cavalry elements? R Engineers. R Signals Comms and EW assets. RLC/REME/RAMC CSS elements. AAC elements. How? With just 34… Read more »

James Fennell

The IOC us big on low profile ongoing ‘operations’ in support of allies to outcompete adversaries – the Russians do it in Syria and Ukraine, and us in Kurdistan. I imagine this is Special Ops rather than SF support to these kinds of ops with ISTAR, info ops, cyber. electronic attack and other ‘non lethal’ capabilities to disrupt an enemy without actually getting into a fistfight. Low profile off the radar special ops to degrade an enemies ability to fight…..Will build on 77th Bde.

Last edited 10 days ago by James Fennell
Daniele Mandelli

Hi James.

I agree, and I support this type of thing. But as a complement to conventional warfighting ability not instead of.

I mentioned SF as I saw that mentioned on the article yesterday before it was taken down, that these S Ops forces could support SF.

And that already happens, through SFSG.

Against the general negativity, I’m quite enthusiastic about all this, with the reservation that some “proper” brigades remain.

James Fennell

Agreed Daniele. I just hope for no more fudge, dithering, u-turns,delays and faiures to deliver. Just keeping the lights on is not enough any more. Get a strong vision – stick to it and invest fast and build. No more 25 year mish-mash programmes with four letter acronymns, generating endless strategies and hot air. No more grandiose yet underfunded and ultimately FUBAR projects. Just do it! We have a new vision for Britain to build out there, and we can’t afford it to be crushed by the dead hand of MoD.

Last edited 10 days ago by James Fennell
Rob

SFs. You need an army of a certain size to recruit suitable SF soldiers. So under this proposal Sfs get bigger whilst the Army contracts. I’m not sure how you square that circle.

Rogbob

More investment in SF trg perhaps to reduce wastage rates, similarly retention.

Or you drop the quality line / divide it by units and tasks that remain appropriate, as done with SRR & SFSG vice having them all as “sharp” as 22.

Airborne

Very little if any wastage during training, wastage is during selection, failure rate usually about 70% on the hills, another 25% in the trees with about 8-10 lads passing both summer and winter courses. No wastage on continuation aside from the odd serious injury. Retention, not normally an issue as after 5 years no option back to Battalion, stay in the Reg and crack on. Super duper tax free dosh in the private sector after a career and a shadow rank pension.

Rogbob

Cheers, interesting – I hadnt appreciated the difference between selection and training although that does make sense with the limited interaction I’ve had with SF pers. I recall a few years ago the favourite RAF branch boasting of a 80%+ failure rate on training (a years worth) and me pointing out that must be a seriously crud selection/training system and what a complete waste of money. They saw it purely as a measure of how ally they were. I had thought that mentality had been drummed out to a more commonsense approach – make a (cheap) selection hard then expect… Read more »

Airborne

They are mostly clowns, they have no one and nothing to compare themselves too, as they don’t do any of the Army career course, they don’t go to Warminster, Brecon etc and they even run their own sniper cadre. This is about thinking they are great, but ensuring they don’t have to train directly with the organisation they think they are better than. My most amusing moment is when I was at Honnington, visiting my daughter, the 2 Sqn blokes in the bar were giving it big licks that they are the original 2 Para…..mmmm they don’t seem to even… Read more »

Airborne

Stay? ..bloody hell should say stag!

Daniele Mandelli

Love it mate.

Airborne

I may be a bit harsh, but…….lol

Daniele Mandelli

I appreciate the anecdotes mate.

Daniele Mandelli

Agreed. The Tier 1 SF units standards cannot be diluted and I’m opposed to their expansion. Sp Ops forces and SF are different, mind. This is not about 22 SAS, the SBS, or the SRR. The expansion of the UKSF Group since the early 2000s, was not in the real SF, but their enablers, aviation, signals, boats, and Infantry support as a lesson from Sierra Leone and their involvement in the War on Terror. I don’t include SRR in that expansion as they already existed under a different name and role. This is more elite light infantry joining with high… Read more »

Dern

I’m interested about the SFAU units, I hadn’t heard anything about them before this came out today. I suspect you’ll see a couple of LI battalions downsize into SpecInf style units to fill that niche (Also accounting for army decreasing headcounts).

Daniele Mandelli

Agree. I’m guessing they are, in effect, those 4 battalions already downsized in the SIG along with 3 RGR and possibly joined by others?

Dern

I’d say that’s unlikely.

Daniele Mandelli

Will be fascinating to see. An easy find on wiki

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Security_Force_Assistance_Brigade

Unless I’m understanding our SIG wrongly the description of the role of this lot seem to be the same. Even the name.

Like BCT, we just copy the Americans.

So LI battalions becoming Spec Inf Btns and garrisoned abroad at the “Hubs”

Dern

*shrug* who knows, we’ll just have to wait and find out.

Last edited 9 days ago by Dern
Airborne

Totaly agree, with the reduction in LI Bns, those PIDS can be used for CS/CSS. However lets get away from the Divisional structure, which was just a hollowed out list of units and get everyone in service useable and allocted to a fighting formation. Give them somthing to relate to, work for, have pride in away from the capbadge and make these BCTs/BGs named and numbered!Cheers mate.

Daniele Mandelli

Agree. Please don’t let them F*** this up. Worryingly the dark lord is remaining in post til Autumn.

Graham

We no longer have a ‘ self-sufficient tactical’ Division to deploy. so a self-sufficient tactical Brigade is the logical next step. The Army has withered to the point that the new ‘ambition’ is to only deploy a reinforced Brigade.

James Fennell

But also lesson of Afghanistan and Iraq was that ‘Big Green’ high profile Corps level ‘boots on the ground’ is unwieldy and easily gets politically outmanouvred and bogged down in modern battlescapes. Thus ‘Big Green’ is better for highly lethal fast in and out raiding ops rather than enduring operations, and for that reason it needs to become fast and agile. Low profile support for local forces is better long-term to undermine and degrade the enemy and minimize political fall -out for ourselves. Also this support must focus on areas where these forces need complementing – i.e. ISTAR, electronic attack,… Read more »

Last edited 10 days ago by James Fennell
AlexS

You can only do that with an Imperial logic and a cultural consistence which probably means today non democratic government.
You cannot have the kind of Russian results when Labour might have complete different opinion in 4 years.

James Fennell

It depends on both the context and the use of stealth. If your support is aligned with our values – for a close ally or oppressed group, if the support is sufficiently low key to be ambiguous. Then yes. The Kurds, Oman ’70s, support for the Afghans in the ’80s etc. Under Starmer Labour will not object, after all it was Labour who took us to Sierra Leome, Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq was it not, and Biden is more aggressive in the ME? Today we could deploy that type of support in Ukraine, Mali, Nigeria, Somalia, Myanmar, Afghanistan, Iraq and… Read more »

John Stevens

Interesting that you bring that topic up. I think the Tories will be in power until or at least the end of the decade. Conservatives have a 80 seat majority plus a lead in the current opinion polls, so that may just bring some stability to the MOD and military after this review. Same administration in power for the decade, might just allow for some of theses changes to carry through successfully. Will see..

Stephen Ball

Don’t get why the solar panels, a football sized plot of land if the solar panels were 8% efficient only power’s 10 homes.

Why not plant fruit tree’s and try to sell the fruit. Its more greener, And the solar panel’s wont need replacing after 25 year’s.

john melling

So are we going to be similar to the US army BCT model?

Pacman27

If we are to assume Brigade Combat Teams will follow the American model we can see how the figure of 72k personnel for the army has come about A BCT is circa 4.8k personnel so: 3 Armoured BCT’s providing 1 available in a high/medium/low readiness rotation would be 14.4k. Repeat for Strike and Light infantry/Airborne and you get 43.2k personnel This leaves 5 ABCT organisations for other duties (1 CnC, 1SFG, 1 Ceremonial, 1 Specialised inf, 1 Combat Support???) and that equates to 28.8k add the 2 together and you get the magic 72k army number 9 combat BCT’s and… Read more »

James Fennell

Brilliant inference!

john melling

As of 2014 the US infantry BCT consisted of 4,413 with 3 battalions of infantry

1 x brigade engineer battalion
3 x Infantry
1 x cavalry
1 x fires battalion
1 x brigade support

For a rough comparison of Pacman’s above

Then they also have a Stryker BCT

Like you said it may be similar but we have to wait and see

Last edited 10 days ago by john melling
Pacman27

I went with the larger 4743 personnel of the armoured CBT as a standard size and rounded up.

Renown

You are forgetting that the US Army has about 450,000 soldiers for 30 BCT’s. That equates to about 15,000 soldiers for every BCT with 10,000 other soldiers off in other units, organizations, and training. Those soldiers do valuable tasks such as maintaining helicopters, providing AD, EW, training new soldiers, and lots of other tasks. Therefore the British Army could get about 5 all arms brigades from the the current army plus some spare battalions in Cyprus, Brunei, London ect ect.

Rogbob

You realise the US Army has 31 combat brigades, on a total of 448,000 people. So it’s average strength is 14.4k per BCT. That is the relevant figure for “back of the envelope calcs” not the BCT TOE strength which of course ignores that nearly twice as much as that Bde strength is tied up in the “overhead” required to generate and sustain field formations. So your 9 combat brigades would, proportionally, need a UK Army of 130,000. Almost double the actual planned size. Noting 9 combat Bde level formations was about the UK OOB in 1990 with 155,000 people.… Read more »

Pacman27

Understand what you are saying but the strength of a BCT is no more than 4.8k

i understand there will be a need for sustainment and support and that’s why I have allocated 28.8k personnel outside of the core forces.

personally I think we can go for 10 BCT’s of 4.8k personnel (3 x armour, 3 x strike, 3 light infantry/ air assault, plus 1 SFG) that will be supported by the remaining 24k personnel.

ultimately what else can they do?

Rogbob

You are confusing the strength of the point of the spear with the strength of the entire spear. Your 28.8k is completely inadequate, if we look at the US Army it has 140k in BCTs and 340k outside it. Some 70% of the Army is not in “combat” formations. Proportionately, that would be over 50k for the UK, getting on for double your estimate. Focussing so closely on combat formations misses just how much is needed to generate and sustain them. For example, after D day, I think the ratio of “combat” to “supporting” personnel was 1:3 in 21st Army… Read more »

Pacman27

Hi Rogbob i am providing a view that I believe is being followed, this is not a preference of mine. I am on record as stating a division should be 11.8k with a combat element of 3000 (4 inf + 1 fires) with the rest being support. but given HMG are stating they are going for BCT’s, want to spread them out globally and presumably want to maintain some sort of harmonisation how would you fit armoured, strike and SFG into 72k. it’s pointless talking about the US as we cannot emulate and our politicians will want front line numbers,… Read more »

Rogbob

Look, its not about emulating the US (although let’s be honest, the label BCT absolutely is!). It’s about looking at the number of combat formations and understanding that only a small proportion of uniformed people actually sit in those, circa 30%. It doesn’t really matter what those formations are called or how they are structured, it’ll always be a similar ratio, +/- 5% at best. At the moment we have what, nominally 80k and 5 Combat/Deployable Brigade formations (with sufficient supports albeit not in those Brigades). The BCT will be a reorg of the existing 2 Armd Inf and 2… Read more »

Pacman27

I do understand this, out of 82k in the current force there are circa 18k infantry of which probably 14k are infantry.

you have totally misunderstood me. this is not my preference it is my assessment of what HMG will do.

Rogbob

I dont understand how 14k are inf of 18k inf? Do you thus think you can allocate 14k to combat formations? How did you arrive at 14k? My point is your ideas on allocating people seem to be blind to how the majority are actually organised and allocated. Thus you grossly overestimate how much can be put in the “front line” and how much actually needs to be centralised in a “core” vs dispersed amongst formations. Your first post literally just counts people in formed Brigades and sums that to the entire army. As I keep pointing out, those people… Read more »

Marked

I’m not convinced cyber even belongs with the army.

It just feels too far removed from the army’s core skills and responsibilities and more suited to a specialised branch of the intelligence services to me.

Keyboard warriors can not replace battlefield warriors. Something I am concerned we are facing.

Nigel Collins

This was interesting to note.

USMC says goodbye to tanks and hello to long-range fires
“The US Marine Corps (USMC) is preparing to make a host of sweeping changes to its operating concept with plans to bid adieu to tanks while also expanding its long-range fires capabilities.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/usmc-says-goodbye-to-tanks-and-hello-to-long-range-fires

Nigel Collins

As was this.

AUSA Global 2021: Army chief pushes for stagnant end strength numbers to pay for new weapons
“A couple of months remain before the Biden administration and the Pentagon unveil the fiscal year 2022 budget request, but Army Chief of Staff General James McConville said he is prepared to sacrifice a larger force to spare new weapons programmes.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/ausa-global-2021-army-chief-pushes-for-stagnant-end-strength-numbers-to-pay-for-new-weapons

Pacman27

I totally agree with this approach especially as the US have made the trophy system lighter so it can be used on Stryker. lets assume we have our std IFV boxers come with fulll ISR, a CTA cannon and ATW and 6 dismounts, backed up by a full spectrum of embedded fires 120mm Amos, 155mm gun, MLRS, land ceptor, etc. the strike force could move with a helicopter force of Apaches and I believe this could be more potent than a relatively slow heavy armoured formation. the key has to be that with a much smaller force it has to… Read more »

Peter S

I wondered whether, because of close cooperation between RN and USMC, some of the latter’s operating reforms might have influenced thinking about the future shape of the army. On balance I think not: the USMC is, because of its ww2 history, focussed on the Pacific region. Most of the likely areas of conflict are unsuitable for operations by heavy armour because of size or terrain. So the reform is driven by where they expect to fight. It appears UK shares a similar wish to be more agile but does not know where we expect to fight. The USMC will be… Read more »

James Fennell

I agree with this – we have seen how long range fires can take out arnour long before it gets close with devastating effect recently. .But we need better A2AD for our forces to keep their fires away from us too.

Last edited 9 days ago by James Fennell
AlexS

On the whole the text is ridiculous to not say dishonest in its pretensions considering the available capabilities and quantities.
Seems the whole thing was written to seduce Boris.

dan

Has China Joe Biden approved this change? LMAO

Andrew

It’s just more meat of the bone ,not that there was much left 😪

Christopher Allen

It seems we have completely lost any ability to wage any sort of ground war at all.

This is saddening to see how far we have fallen since the first gulf war. Like it or not, for the Army, the biggest threat remains Russia, not China or some other force in Asia. I am personally surprised the US hasn’t raised serious concerns about this considering up til now the UK was one of the few reliable partners in Europe.

Last edited 10 days ago by Christopher Allen
Andrew

The USA may look to France as there Army is now the biggest in Europe.Like I have said in other posts to me UK PMs and MPs have a Disease called cuts.😷

pkcasimir

Under Trump, the US was looking to Poland which is in the process of modernizing its Armed Forces. Will Austin follow that lead? If he has any sense he will. The US will not look to France; the mistrust is too heavy, on both sides. Besides, the Poles will fight. The Germans won’t. And the French will put their finger to the wind to determine if they should fight. And if they do fight, they will fight their own war.

Levi Goldsteinberg

This isn’t unprecedented or an aberration, the UK has always had a smaller army than mainland European nations. Where we have always stood head and shoulders above the rest (and continue to) is our navy and air force

David F.

The trouble is the RAF is and the RN are utterly hollowed out. Laughable numbers I think.

Tempest will be the undoing of the RAF as it will just hover up all available resources. The UK will end up having less than a hundred fast jets in 20 years.

LiamD

First proper comment on the site so go easy guys. I’m cautiously optimistic about the potential in this proposed set up but I’m far less so about its execution. Without significant spending on AFVs/IFVs, self propelled artillery, engineering vehicles, UAS, air defence etc. then I’m worried this will be another exercise in wishful thinking. Otherwise, we risk forward deploying troops who will not only be outnumbered, but will be forced to use old, increasingly unreliable equipment in less than meaningful quantities. If that means scrapping Warrior and Challenger, fine, 150 (or 220) tanks is insignificant anyway and without stationing them… Read more »

Nicolas

Looks like the idea of the US SFAB finally gained some traction..

James Fennell

Thinking more about this we now have: BCTs Security Force Assistance Units Special Operations Forces A Global Rseponse Force Garrisoned Global Hubs in (presumably), Central Europe, Asia-Pac, Africa and Gulf (HQs in Germany, Singapore, Nigeria and UAE) Reserves picking up more support to the civil power in UK to free up forces for longer term overseas deplyoments. It does look much more like referencing the British posture before 1970. In those days we had strategic reserves with HQs in Singapore and Bahrein as well as BAOR. Each of these commands supported forces on long term assignments throughout their region, For… Read more »

Last edited 9 days ago by James Fennell
James Fennell

You can see each of these Global Hubs getting a mix of garrison troops – Security Force Assistance Units, Type 31 Frigates, Helicopters, Support and Special Ops Forces into which carrier strike groups, expeditionary air wings and BCTs can plug and play with regional forces if a crisis occurs. Presumably the Global Response Force is high readiness go anywhere but based in UK.

Daniele Mandelli

I suspect the GRF is 16AA Bde

Airborne

Im all for it, as CBTs, if resourced fully are the way forward. However, and a big however, no matter what they call these formations, they need to be fully resourced and equipped, and train the way they will fight. No longer do we need a half arsed Divisional structure, which cannot put a real Divison into the field. Small, well equipped CBTs will be more useful, as the way we will be operating and fighting in the future will seem to be on a smaller scale and more of a deployable nature. Dont get me wrong I am a… Read more »

Airborne

CBTs? bloody hell…..phone and bloody predicted txt!!!

Daniele Mandelli

Bingo. Nothing more to add mate.

John Clark

Totally agree, many of us do…

Ron

I have argued on many occasions that the British Army needs to be rebuilt. The first step is to separate numbers from fighting units, support units and reserves. Then form the fighting units into battalion sized battlegroups of about 700 men. These battlegroups could be one heavy (tracked, MBT/Ajax) formations for two light (Boxer) formations. Boxer units would need some extra firepower which means an increase in the types of modules bought. AS90 to be with the Heavy battle groups and the light 105mm with the Boxers until the Skyranger/RCH155 and the direct fire support modules come on line. Army… Read more »

Rogbob

The problem with these battlegroups is managing them. By having as we do, combat support and combat service support sub units in their own unit structure – we get economies of scale in managing and equipping them and the flexibility to retask them as needed. By having literally everything organically in a batlegroup with little to nothing outside it, all that is lost. The consequence would be an explosion of battlegroup and sub unit managment personnel to replace the functions done by a unit HQ, and an explosion of sub unit size so they really can, alone, support the rest… Read more »

Bill

It’s a real kick in the teeth for the army and it’s future recruitment program has been shot to bits. BTW, anyone heard more about the ‘record’ intake of last year? Record drop outs no doubt. The army has always been the least expensive to maintain, but with pie in the sky programs such as the ludicrously expensive F35 procurement fiasco, it was always going to be the service with the most outdated equipment likely to suffer dispropotionately in any cuts. A PM who doesn’t know a frigate from a destroyer to a Warrior AFV. We’re in safe hands with… Read more »

Paul42

RheinmettalAG have just announced Challenger 2 LEP contract for £750 million has been signed. Exact details will not be announced until next week.

Last edited 9 days ago by Paul42
Rogbob

It would appear WR is for the chop. Fair enough, nothing can do what a CR2 can, but Boxer and Ajax variants can replace a WR.

Paul42

If Ajax and Boxer can do the job of WR, it makes sense to scrap WR and concentrate on other badly needed assets.

Rogbob

The question is “if”, I wrote they can as unarguably they offer modern wheeled and tracked infantry carriers, but whether you could make either an IFV seems undetermined.

Peter S

Gabriele Molinelli has written an excellent piece pointing out that Ajax is the problem, a vehicle that doesn’t easily fit into the likely future formations. It is a very expensive (£5.3 b per Janes) programme to which we are contractually committed.
If Warrior LEP is abandoned, then using Ajax in the armoured formations would make sense but the limited room for dismounts is problematic.

Paul42

Which begs the question of why did we order so many Ajax & Boxer? A realistic compromise would have been smaller numbers with overhauled Warriors.

Peter S

It was more a less a one for one replacement for the cvrt family, hence all the variants. I don’t understand why we opted for such a huge increase in size and weight at the very time the ambition to be more nimble was being discussed.
If finally, Warrior has the CTA turret and can still carry enough dismounts, why can’t Ajax which is bigger?

Rogbob

Ok, will have to find that. I suspect if WR goes, unless Ajax can be extended to gain dismount numbers with the turret (unlikely?) or Boxer has space/stability with a turret (unlikely?) then its back to Armoured Inf in APCs. I like Ajax though as its a modern and caapble syatem, but no-one else seems to have a hard-on for tracked armoured recce “specialist” vehicles and its an odd group to have prioritised. Arguably we shpuld have gone heavy on Boxer from the start, saved procuring many of the UOR vehicles and lvied with uograded CVRT2s then replace WR with… Read more »

Airborne

Ajax cant fit any lads in the back, but Ares can carry 7. Get the CTA 40mm from Warrior onto Ares, and try to jam it onto Boxer for the Strike Suport Companies at least. Ares for the Armoured CBTs and uplifted Boxers for Strike Support Coys. Ajax is a top wagon, just being pushed into the wrong shaped hole by the Army top head sheds.

Airborne

Again CBT bloody predictive txts thinks im taking a motorbike test!!!!

Airborne

Ajax should be used in the Armoured formations, as thats what it was designed for, as recce. Its not medium armour, never was, thats just the wrong shaped hole its being forced into. Ares can replace warrior if you want the Armoured BCTs to stay on tracks, fits 7 dismounts already in the back. Put on the WR 40 mm CTA turret, use the best of the WR hulls to replace the 432s, and keep Boxer (with some clout) in the Strike BCTs. Cheers.

Peter S

The problem is baffling. The new turret on Warrior leaves room for 7 dismounts. The same turret on Ajax doesn’t. So presumably fitting it to Ares creates the same difficulty. Why the hell did no-one have the foresight to avoid this problem?
Absolutely agree that if WLEP is dropped, keep the best of the hulls as APCs.

Airborne

Mate the turret ring on Ajax is large, which creates problems in the basic shape of the Ares methinks. However there must be a solution. I’m happy even to have a mixed wheels/tracks BCT organisation, with turrets Boxers, if it means there is some decent combat power.

Peter S

I assumed that the new LM turrets for Warrior and Ajax are the same. Having checked the LM Ampthill website, it seems they’re not despite both being designed to house the CTA cannon.So the space in Ajax must be taken up by all the ISTAR kit, not the gun. Given that as you say Ajax has a bigger turret ring, fitting the Warrior turret to an Ajax body ought to be possible.
I was staggered to find that GD are paying LM $1b for 245 Ajax turrets-£3m each!

Airborne

That guys knows his onions for sure, always a good read.

Peter S

Good news that we are keeping heavy armour. The big worry is that we will only get about 150 upgraded with new turret and gun. That would mean the remaining hulls could not act as a reserve unless there is a follow on contract.

Paul42

Let’s hope its more than 150, that to be honest would be a repeat of previous farcical efforts…..

Rob

I hope the new digitally networked, cyber secure Army can learn when to publish online press releases and when not too…

Ooops.

Paul.P
Daniele Mandelli

Cannot open that. Sounds V interesting.

Paul.P

Attempts originating in Syria to jam the GPS of an RAF A400. Only the Russians in that location have the skills to do that. It was detected and dealt with.

Daniele Mandelli

Ahh, OK. So not the Comms sites in Cyprus themselves. Thanks.
We have plenty of that sort of capability ourselves in Cyprus, hope they responding in kind.

Barry Curtis

The recent integrated review announcement is showing an insight into how the armed forces may move towards in the future, especially after BREXIT, by becoming more open in looking for ways to engage with future allies. For the past six years I have Always felt that the United Kingdom is in a unique position to utilize its overseas bases to enhance the opportunity for training and joint regional cooperation. The Land Regional Hubs will be a key development from this review, and I feel that the army’s current structure may change beyond all recognition. Homeland Security and Civil Contingency Support… Read more »

Nigel Collins

“New Army special operations Ranger Regiment to take on ‘high threat’ missions overseas after Integrated Review.
The Special Operations Brigade, known as the Ranger Regiment, will carry out missions traditionally taken on by the SAS and SBS”.

https://news.sky.com/story/ew-army-special-operations-ranger-regiment-to-take-on-high-threat-missions-overseas-after-integrated-review-12251093

Daniele Mandelli

4 Battalions? Only the Rifles and RRS are bigger I think.

And what happens to the SFSG?

The SFAB. The SIG already exists within 6 Division. Rebranding? Or expanded role?

Awaiting the CS & CSS for these formations.

Last edited 7 days ago by Daniele Mandelli
Rob

Remember reporters with no military experience often confuse regiments & brigades. Maybe they are going to merge 3 Cmdo & 16AA Bdes with 2 Btns of the Para Regt and 2 RM Cmdos? I do hope not but it has been on the cards….

Daniele Mandelli

I hope not too.

David Flandry

You mean the army did not have a global perspective before now? Will it be expected to fight in space? Who will it fight in space, the Arachnids? This is all verbal sleight-of-hand.