The Defence Secretary has announced that Joint Forces Command will be transformed into Strategic Command.

The news comes as part of Defence Secretary Penny Mordaunt outlining the future of the MoD’s space programme.

“We’re seeing state and non-state actors alike operating in that ‘sombre’ zone below the threshold of war… unconstrained by previously accepted norms… using all tools in their armoury… and weaponising information… to catch us off guard to destabilise our societies and our support systems. If we’re to respond, we must have strategic integration across the five warfighting domains – land, air, sea, space and cyber.

That’s why today I can announce that we’re transforming JFC into Strategic Command. Much more than just a name change… this will be a bespoke organisation… supporting Head Office… helping Defence think strategically… assisting our transformation programme… and taking responsibility for a range of strategic and defence-wide capabilities. Combined with its oversight of our global footprint, it will continue enabling our operations and providing critical advice on force development.”

The organisation design to coordinate activity across the Armed Forces will be given a greater strategic role across the five war-fighting domains, say the MoD: Air, Land, Sea, Cyber and Space.

The new body will oversee the Armed Forces’ digital information network to ensure the services operate at the forefront of the information environment and continue to lead the UK’s Permanent Joint Operating Bases in managing operations and providing critical advice on force development.

The Defence Secretary also recently stressed the importance of cooperation with international allies in space, announcing the UK has become the first formal partner in the US-led Operation Olympic Defender: a multinational coalition formed to strengthen deterrence against hostile actors in space and reduce the spread of debris in orbit.

The UK will add 8 personnel to the coalition over the next 18 months, joining counterparts from the US and other international partners at the Combined Space Operations Center (CSpOC) in California.

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Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Good Lord! Another re branding. ” If we’re to respond, we must have strategic integration across the five warfighting domains – land, air, sea, space and cyber.” It already was. JCC. JEMAG. ISS. DI. DSF were already a part of it, and PJHQ manages the PJOB’s across the world and provides the HQ infrastructure for combined operations overseas. Joint described the organisation perfectly. It was already strategic in its nature by the roles if performed and the purple organisations it comprises without this. “That’s why today I can announce that we’re transforming JFC into Strategic Command. Much more than just… Read more »

Monty
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Monty

Least it’s a pretty simple and straight forward name. Fancy names and acronyms have become far too prevalent all areas of government and not just defence. Makes it almost impossible to work out what these departments are for..

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Working it out is the fun bit for me, actually.

But I agree it’s as if many of the changes are deliberate to make things hard to track.

The not so fun bit is now updating my research. Due to a name change!

andy reeves
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andy reeves

maybe time to look again at the mergers of services in the u.k defence such as amalgamating the S.A.S with the S.B.S, IN THE EXTREME, MAYBE THE fleet air arm AND R.A.F its a model the army have used in the merging of regiments in recent years.

Mark F
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Mark F

There is only few problems with that idea. It killed regimental identity, cut resourses. After that where do you go from there.

HF
Guest
HF

The FAA was controlled by the RAF during part of the interwar years. The Navy wasn’t at all happy.

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

The SAS and SBS already have a joint selection.

Although there is some overlap I would leave as is, the ethos and identity of such elite organisations should not be eroded.

And the SBS, in my opinion, is more elite than the SAS anyway.

I would not merge the FAA with the RAF either.

They work, leave well alone.

crabfat
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crabfat

If my memory serves me correctly (and probably doesn’t) didn’t the Canadians propose a single-service type military, combining land, sea and air forces into one service – and then changed their minds? I stand completely corrected, though, if I’m wrong. Looks like they still have three independent services at present.

Levi Goldsteinberg
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Levi Goldsteinberg

The had three separate “commands” under one leadership group. From memory that was Land Command, Air Command and Maritime Command. All one force but with different names for each role

They only change in they renamed those three aspects of the one force back to RCAF, RCN and Canadian Army in 2011

Pacman27
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Pacman27

I agree we have a force size comparable to that of the USMC who operate with all that wonderful equipment with an audited budget of £16-20bn pa. it really does need to be asked where our 37bn defence budget is spent. Clearly this does not cover nuclear or naval and heavy support items but you can get an awful lot of these for the best part of £20bn A single force of 6 divisions plus a HQ and core logistics group would take out all of the counter productive infighting. I also think having 4 of these divisions identical in… Read more »

Lee H
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Lee H

Afternoon Daniele
“More than just a name change”
It’s just a name change, how do you hid inertia….
You change its name ?
I’ve kept away from blogging for the last couple months but in the week that SC gets announced, some space stuff as well – we cannot even get the basics right – advising and defending UK flagged vessels. What’s the point of being UK flagged if it gives you nothing in return?
Great speech by the current Sec of Defence – I’m sure they appreciated it in the straits of Hormuz

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Afternoon Lee.

Glad you’re still about, albeit not posting.

You’re input and experience is always appreciated.

Geoffrey Roach
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Geoffrey Roach

Any bets on it being StratCom by the end of the month? Watch those files Daniele!

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

It’s a labour of love Geoffrey. And a pain in the ****!

Peter Shaw
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Peter Shaw

How about annoucing a massive reduction in overseas aid unless the money is used to support our companies gaining contracts overseas? We can also have a commensurate rise in the defence budget from say 2% to 2.5%. How about also controlling overseas nationals using our NHS budget and ensuring all foreign nationals have health insurance cover by recognised providers in the UK if they want to get through immigration (maybe even have health insurance providers at the immigration gates so people have to pay before entry). Maybe then we’ll have enough money to propose such ambitious projects for the UK… Read more »

Julian
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Julian

I’d add HS2 to the list. £30 billion! No, that’s not the expected cost, that’s just the potential OVERSPEND that the chairman of the project warned about last week (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-49048823). If that overspend comes to pass the total project cost could be £86 billion and he’s not the first to peg the likely costs up at the £80 billion plus level either. Sheer madness for the benefits it will bring. Half that money could create far more regeneration for northern cities and still leave £43 billion left over for other stuff. Just half of that left over half for defence… Read more »

Alan Garner
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Alan Garner

Meanwhile, Crossrail is wasting similar sums and never a word about its cancellation. One standard for London another for the North.

Herodotus
Guest

Has Crossrail been cancelled? Do give us more information on this already built project!

Paul T
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Paul T

No threat of cancellation ,just more delays due to acceptance work and safe integration of all the relevant systems (signalling etc)

Herodotus
Guest

Yes, I know…just querying the previous uninformed comment!

Robert1
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Robert1

I think it was less of a suggestion that CrossRail had been cancelled. And more a hypothetical of why has so much scorn been directed at HS2 compared to the Lond centric CrossRail (and potential CrossRail2).

Simon Beck
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Simon Beck

Thank you Paul T for your clarification.

Herodotus
Guest

Talk about a one track mind. At least HS2 will have two tracks!

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Agree, it’s nuts.

As I work on the railways, I’m all for expansion, improvement and investment in the infrastructure.

But spend on existing not 2 fast tracks saving 15 minutes to Birmingham or whatever it is.

How many ministers are in line to benefit from shares in the companies involved I wonder?

Watcherzero
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Watcherzero

HS2 increases capacity more than a few junction tweaks here and there on the existing alignment. By removing the bulk of Express Intercity services from the existing WCML (e.g. London services that don’t stop south of Wigan/Warrington/Preston) you free the paths to be used for commuter and inter-regional services giving a more frequent service to many more stations.

Herodotus
Guest

Exactly! Don’t forget slow moving freight as well!

Pacman27
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Pacman27

Double decker trains will increase capacity and one has already been designed to work on our railroads that doesn’t need a change to all the bridges

We need to decide wether we want capacity or speed. For me double deckers and resurrecting old lines is far more cost effective than HS2

the_marquis
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the_marquis

That’s interesting – how can they run doubledeckers without altering the bridges?

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Double deck, it’s an interesting concept and works well on the continent, but their railway has the space for this. On my line from Waterloo it would cause utter chaos and a fortune would be spent increasing the headroom under over line bridges. I agree on HS2. I’d prefer the money, or just some of it, spent on increasing capacity on existing lines. And the old lines idea is a good one. I’m no train buff but I’ve read of something called the Great Central Line which was built with spare capacity in mind and of which large parts are… Read more »

Pacman27
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Pacman27

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/607359/Double-decker-trains-Aeroliner-3000-transport-railway-future-travel

All ready to rock and roll it would seem.

Also check out the circular runways for airports not the BBC. I cant help thinking this is the solution for heathrow, but clearly a massive risk to take. Perhaps a possible solution to runways 3 and 4.

Herodotus
Guest

I think the article is referring to these DD trains operating on HS2…where a larger loading gauge can be built in. I can’t imagine the point of a 250mph train the west coast line! It would be pointless,,,like sticking a Ferrari on the Euston Road.

Pacman27
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Pacman27

This is definitely on our current gauge. I am not concerned about the speed TBH, its the increase in capacity and passenger comfort that is important. Also gets under our bridges as well Makes use of latest materials and for me is a no brainer to build at least a prototype and see if it will work. Instead we are buying trains in large numbers that are not increasing our capacity, it is the signalling that does that be cramming more onto the same system. It’s also been proven that were the old lines have been reinstated they are used… Read more »

Herodotus
Guest

Yeah, I meant loading gauge which is the body size not the axle width!

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

I look forward to seeing THAT go pass my box!

I think that day I will have been sacked for drinking…

Herodotus
Guest

Daniele, you work on the railways…tut tut. Didn’t you know it’s about capacity? The west Coast line is nearing full capacity, in ten years or so, at current growth rates it is going to be a basket case. If you are going to build a new railway to ease the congestion, why would you build a slow one (that’s where the 15 minutes comes from). Here is a good website for keeping up with such matters…some good stuff on signalling as well!
https://www.railengineer.co.uk/

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Thanks Herodotus. I was aware of the WCML capacity ssues.

But I’m STILL against spending 80 billion plus on fixing it!!!!

Will have a look at the signalling, as that’s my area.

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Very interesting site. But the signalling bit is like Swahili to me.
I work a proper box…not this stuff on a PC screen!

Sadly it is the future and hundreds of boxes and jobs will be lost because of it.

Herodotus
Guest

Yeah, my brother-in-law worked in old style box somewhere out Chard way. He absolutely loved his job…like a pig in shit. Must admit that these mission control centres look a bit frightening and sterile!
The site is very informative and the articles are written by experts in their field. Some of the content though can be very technical!

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

And when they go wrong, the whole area is knackered. All eggs in one basket and a computer glitch hits.

In older boxes, ok the tech is antiquated, but it works, and if it goes wrong a smaller area is affected.

Greater redundancy in my view but I’m old fashioned like that and institutionalised.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

Going back to a 13 T26 frigate fleet, will Not solve the shortage of frigates problem. It would have costed near £13 billion to have the same number of frigates as of now! Which is Not enough!
That was the propose of the Type 31 general propose frigate, to increase the frigate numbers.
The RN needs at least 8 T31s on top of the present T23/26 ASW frigates.

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

Agree.

Robert blay
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Robert blay

And if we did save all that money, it would probably go straight back into the NHS budget or education. I think a 2.5% defence budget is totally realistic though, but I would disagree with cutting the foreign aid budget, it’s a soft power budget that gives this country alot of influence, and we shouldn’t be seen to be pulling back from our international obligations. But I think the gov could do a better job of informing the general public what exactly our 14 billion gets spent on. Thanks Peter.

Pacman27
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Pacman27

Robert I agree the FAB is important, but perhaps we need to be far clearer on what we will do with it. I am all for supplying British made product with it, rather than handing out money. Examples of this would be Containerised homes post hurricane season (something that will last for future years) with inbuilt solar. Clean water technology, toilets (which we do with the gates foundation), medical supplies and treatment and power generation. All of these are things we can and should be world leaders on. Also simple things – like all of those rental bikes that are… Read more »

Simon Beck
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Simon Beck

Absolutely right Peter Shaw. Defence first -foreign aid second.

Mark
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Mark

How very American. Flashy rebranding really goes to show how seriously we are taking things

Mark F
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Mark F

How very United States Air Force. No amount of polished rebranding is going to increase resources.

HF
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HF

Who’s going to be the Curtis Le May figure ?

Herodotus
Guest

Andy Reeves by the look of it!!!

Daniele Mandelli
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Daniele Mandelli

That made me laugh! Good one.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

The guy who conducted the Security and Defence review, who Williamson had a battle with?
Is he Cabinet Secretary as well!

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Sedwill. I will take Andy any day.

Frank62
Guest
Frank62

Ooooooh, Russia, China, Syria, Iran & N Korea will tremble at our name changing abilities.