Cold Start: An analysis

RayC
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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby RayC » 04 Jul 2004 10:27

Colonel,

I think there is disconnect between you and me.

I am not saying that from the word go NCW is in action.

I am looking at our level - the execution of the Plan and the Mission, when it has already rolled. It is the moment to moment change which requires adjustment to meet the challenges dictated by the minute to minute situational change.

Having seen real war/combat in all ranks (except 2/Lt) and in various capacities of command, my biggest worry was always the blasted void in information. Many times I hated stabbing in the dark and hoping like hell that all goes well. Fortunately, God was on my side. But one must not always depend only on God, because God helps them who help themselves. ;)

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby RayC » 04 Jul 2004 10:33

Originally posted by wyu:
May I ask if your comrades have taken to my slang ala bellycrawlers, boat people, and birdbrains?
We all love gobbledygooks, don't we?

I went for my unit's Silver Jubilee and I called them bellycrawlers. They didn't appreciate it but they could not tell me to my face! And yet, I found them all using it thereafter! :)

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Rajiv Lather » 04 Jul 2004 20:56

OK I know I am poking my nose in a discussion that involves senior-level serving or retired officers. I hope they will permit me to raise some points in my posts.

Let us think about 'real time' information. There is something called information overload or too much information. Meaning there is so much information coming through, (this is supposing everything is working all right and no info exchange is being intercepted or jammed), that the commanders do not have sufficient time to read thru it all, understand and digest the same and yet react well in time. By the time they are able to do that, this information will be old and more recent information will be coming thru!

As an example I would say, do the Corps or Army commanders need to know, at all times, where each platoon/squadron is, and in what situation it finds itself? I would say, it is my guess, that if a Colonel of an armoured regiment has real time info on all three of his squadrons it is a good thing. But suppose the Brigade commander is getting the same info, is that good or bad? Will the Brigadier try to micro manage the battle? Will he loose sight of the bigger picture? Will he allow the Colonel to take decisions at his end? And what happens if the same info is reaching the Division commander? Now this has started to become really confusing!!!

And I would think it will put tremendous strain on the lower rank officers once they know everything they are doing is going right to the top. It might make them either too cautious or maybe even too bold.

What we may then require is filtering information going both ways. We dont really want or need the Captains and Majors knowing orders of Corps commanders to their division commanders. And then we have to control the reach or throw of the information. How many levels of command a particular real time info can be allowed to pass thru before it totally messes up the whole decision making process?

I have some more points about this Cold Start doctrine and Battle Groups that I will raise later.

Regards,

Rajiv Lather

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Rudra » 04 Jul 2004 21:10

good points Rajiv. in corporate world each level of manager collects info from subordinates and prepares a brief executive summary for the next upward level.

Information availability (to help better hi-level decisions) has to be delinked from low-level decision making (the Gen doesnt order a platoon around) but is free to watch UAV footage on TV if he has the spare time.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby RayC » 04 Jul 2004 23:34

In the corporate world, info availability can be mulled over in peace and with a whole lot of time at hand. In a fluid battle it cannot be so. That's the difference.

In the corporate world a wrong decision can be rectified. In war, it maybe too late. That's the difference - take a few hundred lives!

Therefore, any allegory with the corporate world would not be totally correct.

Why should the Generals micro-manage? A task has been assigned, and each level has to perform within his ambit of responsibilty and accountability. Let them perform. Those closer to the action know best than those more removed.

In war, you would be totally wrong to micromanage. You should only advise or even manage (if you wish) BEFORE the attack but not when the Plan is already rolling......and that too not at the last minute; unless there is some earth shaking input! Then, too, the attack/ plan will be postponed and the new earth shaking input cranked in. The flipside is that it is bad for the morale since all are geared to go. If the attack/ Plan is on already on the roll and there is some earth shaking input that will bring it not nearly to nought, then the higher commanders would not interfere but merely put addition resources to the commander organising the attack/ Plan. Also, the higher commander could then manoeuvre the element under his command to assist the Attack or Plan, keeping the unit executing the Plan informed.

Though it is lousy example for illustration of the frustration when an attack is postponed. It is like a person who is to go to the gallows. If it is done immediately, its OK because the gnawing uncertainity is over. On the other hand, any delay, is nerve wracking. In an attack, one expects the worst and that is why each one in the attack, goes for the enemy's jugular since it is either him or me! Of course, patriotism is an input and a great motivator, yet doesn't want to die in vain.

Therefore, in view of the above, a plan must be made with due deliberation with all the pros and cons considered and changes should be avoided. Within the Plan if 'windows of opportunities' present themselves, they should be seized and all informed. This is more feasible when there is a workable NCW.

In Kargil, the CO 2 RAJ RIF did exactly his way for the Battle of Tololing. The General or the Brigadier did not interfere. There was ofcourse the Presentation of the Plan and discussions. It was the FIRST attack that the Div was launching and it HAD to SUCCEED because the morale of the whole Div, nay the country, was at stake. The General should have been prone to micromanagaing since his prestige and career was also at stake (if one goes by the idea that Generals will micromanage). And,given the fear being expressed here that Generals would micromanage if info was realtime, there could have been no greater a reason not to micromanage. Yet, the General nor the Corps Commander interfered or micromanaged. They had put their reputation at stake in a very difficult political and military scenario but they knew that the immediate battle was being fought by the battalion and not them; and that the CO knew best!

What was the result? The result was - success. It was all because the Corps Commander never interfered with the Div Commander's plan and so on all the way down to the section commander. The final result - the Pakistanis were sent scampering.

If there was micromanagement, then there would have been confusion and Pakistan would have achieved her aim.

So, lets not feel that just because info is available realtime, everyone wants to become a 2/Lt and re-live his days (without acountability). Such a feeling do most of the Generals and senior officers injustice that they are bunch of little children playing toy soldiers!

At the same time, I will concede that there are such chumps around too, who think they know all and the juniors know nothing. Yet, I would say, should we inhibit ourselves because of this minority who could skew the system?

NCW is not perfect and we may not have the wherewithals as yet. But, it is a great tool and we should work towards it and take in all input of those who are ahead of us in the game. If we do, we will be saving ourselves the problem of re-inventing the wheel. That is why we must listen carefully to the Colonel.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 05 Jul 2004 09:13

Sir,

Your points finally understood but I'm not sure how NCW would have aided you. As I stated, NCW is an information system, not a recee system. Someone somewhere must go forth and stab in the dark. NCW would allow a faster response but you still need a recee - either by stealth or by force.

Rajiv Lather,

Information overload is not the problem. We all are trained to know what we need to know and what we don't need to know. My job as Bde OpsO is to tell the Col what, where, and how everyone is doing. I go down as far as it needs to. I will tell him which sections are in trouble and in dire need of help. At the same time, I will ignore entire battalions if they're sitting pretty.

By the same token, I will tell the battalions what they need to know and what they must pass onto their people. Primarily of which is the intent of the corps, div, and bde cmdrs. I will try to give them as much information as possible as to what each one of the cmdrs are trying to achieve.

Military decisions are such last minute things that if the troops have an idea of what needs to be done, then, they have a head start in trying to prepare for it (never works but at least they have an idea of what needs to be done once the orders are issued).

Rudra Singha,

The financial world is not a good analogy and is completely different from military executions. A single section may be the only thing stopping an entire division (ala Thermopalaye or Kapyong). There is no equivelent of $10 stopping a $mil investment.

Hence, there are times when the General does require the exact SITREP from section. The most recent example is the Belgian Para-Commando section that got butchered in Rwanda. Their deaths was the go for that genocide. If they had held out, there was every indication the mad men would have backed off now the full might of a Belgian battle group would have been unleashed.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby daulat » 05 Jul 2004 20:17

wyu - not sure about the belgians in rwanda as an example, as far as i recall, those poor buggers were out on a limb, no one could have helped them. not even the rest of the contingent... (happy to be corrected)

as a contrast, read linda polman's account of a tanzanian company (UN) manning a refugee camp against overwhelming tutsi forces forcing hutu's inside to a miserable death as an example in what good decent men can accomplish againt all the odds given a firm leader. the tanzanians never fired, but stood up to the tutsi militias never the less. deeply humbling account of a horrible episode.

the tanzanians barely had radio contact with the outside world, hardly any firepower, nor supplies, nor medicines. but they tried their best to save ~5000 refugees. goes to show what can be done if people stick to their missions

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 06 Jul 2004 08:51

You're getting into a pet peeve of mine. I deplored the actions of my Lieutenant-General Romeo Dallaire. I feel sorry for the man but as a General, he was lacking. I grant that he recover as best he could after the Belgian pull out but way too little, way too late.

LGen Dallaire was artillery, not infantry. His thinking is mass, not manouver. In all honesty, Belgian snipers could have peeled away alot of the Tutsi battalion on wild goose chases while a determined platoon could have punched through.

Citations such as those of the Tanzinians really burns me. It was too late. By then, the momentum of the genocide was in full swing and only a determined Chapter 7 could have stopped it. I ain't going into why no one took up the Chapter 7 mantle but the fact no one did showed cowardess beyond reproach.

Had the Belgians went on the offensive (they were the only UN offensive capable force in theatre), even if it failed, it would have put the masterminds of the genocide on the defensive and taken the initiative away from them.

The men who stayed behind did proud in that shameful episode. However, no one could feel proud about that horrible event.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby daulat » 06 Jul 2004 12:20

wyu - appreciate your insights on rwanda. this is way off topic, so lets park it here, but i agree - the whole episode is utterly shameful for the international community. dallaire himself comes in for (unfair?) criticism - he talks of lack of mandate and no interest from the security council... anyway... another thread! one easy conclusion though is that the UN is not geared up for any sort of battle, never mind manouever or mass, regardless of whether the constituent forces are.

that probably finally explains to me why the switch from UN to NATO in the Balkans... (?)

added later - my sincere apologies - it was a zambian detatchment
Polman article

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 07 Jul 2004 02:44

My much appreciated thanks. Something to add to my collection.

I would like to switch back to Rwanda for a second. There are object lessons here and I think it would fit within the context of Cold Start.

1) Expectations must equal capabilities. LGen Dallaire was unaware of the options and capabilities his Belgian contingent presented, most likely the difference between an artillery officer trying to command an infantry battle group.

2) Commanders must train with the men under him. LGen Dallaire was parachuted into his command via the UN Old Boys Club - it was simply Canada's turn to supply a General - without any prequalifications. Despite the fact that the Belgians are our NATO allies, expectations and capabilities were not in synch.

3) Authority must match responsibility. I have absolutely no doubt that had it been a Canadian section that was massacre or if LGen Dallaire was a Belgian general, he would have been relieved and shipped home in disgrace in a New York second.

4) Nothing replaces a Direct Chain of Command. LGen Dallaire shared his command with a UN civilian authority, New York City, and the various national capitals of his command. He could not override Brussel's orders to get out and he had to convince everyone under his command to disobey New York's orders to get out.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby daulat » 07 Jul 2004 13:05

wyu - good points as always.

I personally would like to see a discussion on UN peace keeping operations and how to make them successful. When I have some head space I'll start a new thread!

Also, could forum members point to any analyses of Indian Operations in Sierra Leone and any comparisons to Rwanda, etc.?

w.r.t. Cold Start, you are reinforcing the intent and confidence elements that a BG would need to be clear about. And like the rwanda example, there are political as well as military parts to this. here i suspect the PLA might be ahead of us in the WZC...??

perhaps the single consistent recurring problem in the Indian context is/has been political intent?

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Anoop » 07 Jul 2004 16:14

Daulat, check out Operation Khukri : Joint Excellence by Major Anil Raman on the USI website here. The article appeared in the 2002 issue; go to USI Journal under Publications tab and click on Index and choose the Subject Wise tab under 2002. It is a good description of the breakout effort of 3/8 GR with the assistance of 5/8 GR and 18 Grenadiers from the RUF's siege.

The site contains many other articles of interest - look in past issues.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Y I Patel » 13 Jul 2004 23:24

Hello all

My revised op-ed on Cold Start is in the latest BRM issue. Please read and comment!

Dig Vijay to Divya Astra – a Paradigm Shift in the Indian Army’s Doctrine

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Calvin » 14 Jul 2004 06:40

YIP: Excellent article, as expected. Could you also, for the next BRM, put together an annotated war=game that you created in teh Divya Astra thread.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby ramana » 14 Jul 2004 18:41

YIP, Excellent summary of what Cold Start could mean.
BTW,
The Air Force’s exploits in Operation Safed Sagar, notably the bombing of the Muntho Dhalo logistics node of the intruding Pakistani Army, show how coordinated planning and operations can be used by two distinct operations to achieve one common military objective.
Was that supposed to be "services" instead?

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Y I Patel » 15 Jul 2004 00:23

Ramana:

Originally posted by ramana:
YIP, Excellent summary of what Cold Start could mean.
BTW,
The Air Force’s exploits in Operation Safed Sagar, notably the bombing of the Muntho Dhalo logistics node of the intruding Pakistani Army, show how coordinated planning and operations can be used by two distinct [b]operations to achieve one common military objective.
Was that supposed to be "services" instead?[/b]
This should read: "The Air Force’s exploits in Operation Safed Sagar, notably the bombing of the Muntho Dhalo logistics node of the intruding Pakistani Army, show how coordinated planning can be used by two distinct operations (Op Vijay and Op Safed Sagar"

Calvin

Will work on it, but only when I am over the burn out from this piece! Don't know how rangudu finds the energy to chug out article after article!!

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby jrjrao » 16 Jul 2004 12:54

This related to cold start??

The Statesman (India)
July 16, 2004
HEADLINE: NEW COMMAND TO BOOST SECURITY ON PAK BORDER
Srinjoy Chowdhury in New Delhi July 15. -

With defence minister Mr Pranab Mukherjee clearing the creation of a new Army command near the Indo-Pak border, only a nod from the Cabinet Committee on Security and before that, the finance ministry, are necessary before it becomes a reality.

The creation of the South-western Command will be the biggest step towards reorganising the Army's defence structure in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab-Rajasthan sectors. Defence officials said the command should come up sometime later this year. It will comprise 10 corps, a holding formation of two divisions - 26 and 29 - on the Pakistan border and one of India's three strike corps. It will be wedged between the Western and Southern Commands. The headquarters for the command could be at Ambala though a final decision is yet to be taken. The 10 Corps HQ could be at Pathankot. Other places were also considered but many are being considered too close to the border.

Major changes in the Army's Northern and Western Commands are likely. First, the Army's 16 Corps will be divided into two - 16 and 17 Corps. The 17 Corps will be given to the Western Command which, geographically, will shift upwards, taking a chunk of the Northern Command's space and strength. This is because Northern Command is being considered virtually unmanageable in terms of logistics. Currently, the Northern Command has 14 Corps, looking after the Sino-Indian border in Ladakh, Kargil and Siachen, 15 Corps responsible for much of the anti-militancy operations north of the Pir Panjal Range and military activities. Finally, 16 Corps, the biggest of the lot, has a similar profile south of the range. The process of reorganising the Army's forces along the LoC and the Indo-Pak border began sometime last year.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Y I Patel » 16 Jul 2004 20:06

jrjraw - not directly related, but will certainly streamline command of some pretty bulky formations. This move has been speculated before, as has been the split up of 16 corps into 16 and 17 corps.

Both 17 and 10 corps, which are likely to fall under the western command, will have significant armoured components in terms of IABs.

overall, we may have a structure as follows:

Current
Northern Command
14, 15, 16 Corps

Western Command
10, 11 Corps
+ Strike Corps as needed (particularly 1 and 2 Corps)

Southern Command
12 Corps
+ strike corps as needed (particularly 21 Corps)

New
Northern Command
14, 15, 16 Corps (truncated)

Western Command
17 (from 16 corps) and 10 Corps
+ strike corps

South Western Command
11 Corps
+ Strike Corps

Southern Command
12 Corps
+ strike corps

Note that the new South Western Command will become an extremely armour rich command, since 11 corps already has two rapids divs

battle groups will fit in, as required, into Western, SW, and Southern Commands

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Leonard » 17 Jul 2004 06:45

India to set up new command on Pakistani border

* Will increase security in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Rajasthan sectors

By Iftikhar Gilani

NEW DELHI: The Indian Defence Ministry has proposed a new permanent army command along the Indo-Pak border to increase security. The proposal is awaiting approval from the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), the highest body to decide on security matters, which has forwarded it to the Finance Ministry to assess the financial implications.

Sources here said that Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee had a few weeks ago forwarded the proposal to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who referred it to the CCS for consideration.

Indian experts believe that the creation of the new command will be the biggest step towards reorganising the armed force’s structure. The new command will be called South-western Command and will increase security structure in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Rajasthan sectors. It will consist of 10 corps, a holding formation of two divisions — 26 and 29 — on the Pakistani border and one of the Indian three strike corps.

It is proposed that new command could have its headquarters at Ambala and the 10th Corps headquarters be shifted to Pathankot. It will also follow with major changes in the Army’s Northern and Western Commands. The proposal also includes a division in the Army’s 16 Corps and setting up of new 17 Corps. After the Kargil war, an additional 14 Corps was created under Northern Command in Ladakh, to exclusively look after Kargil and Siachen.

India has the 4th largest standing army in the world. It is currently organised under five operational commands namely, Western, Eastern, Northern, Southern and Central Commands. General Officers Commands (GOCs), in the rank of lieutenant generals head the five operational commands. The Indian Army is divided into various functional arms and services such as the Regiment of Artillery, Infantry, Armoured Corps, Army Medical Corps, Army Aviation Corps, Corps of Air Defence Artillery and so on.

Besides adding a new command, the army is planning to increase the number of mountain divisions and the raising of the mountain strike army.

Pakistan's Kashmiri Chamcha ----> giving PAKIS more BROWN pants

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Calvin » 17 Jul 2004 17:48

One interesting aspect of this report is that Manmohan has continued to keep the CCS functioning as an integral component of our national security framework.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Prateek » 18 Jul 2004 02:17

Definitely this is a change from being defensive to offensive line of thinking. Close network between the IA, IN and IAF is a way to go.

To top this, India should also try to provide more 'WINGS' to the IA.

IMO, the future conflict should have less involvement from the IA, compared to the IAF and IN. IA has done a great job of defending INDIA so far. When it comes to offensive strategy, the major role should go to the IAF, IN and our missile forces. IA and the other subordinate forces should only get in to do the clean up JOB. IMO, India should concentrate more on strenghening IAF, IN and missile forces. On top of this, IA should get more 'wings' along with modern equipments.

The bulk of the offensive work should be carried out by the IAF and missile forces under the cover of missile defence and air defense system aided by constant survelience using techint (satelites, AWACS etc...) and humint.

It is not enough for the three armed forces to work together, the intelligence agencies do play a major role. So it is 3 forces + our intel, in all a force of 4.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby adrian » 18 Jul 2004 03:20

YIP,
According to the news article just above your post the new command is likely to have
the following structure

South Western Command

10 Corps(having 2 RAPID Divs) , ? Corps ( having 26 and 29 Divisions) and one strike corps (this could very well be the entire XXI strike corps or elements of it, its RAPID div as well as Armd Div moved north anyway during Op Parakram.)

There is also the possibility that some of the exisiting IABGs from 16 corps could be taken to form an entire new strike corps though I doubt it)

The Western Command would have

17 corps(I am not sure which divs?), II Strike Corps and 11 Corps.

To the best of my knowledge 11 corps does not have any RAPID divs but 10 Corps has two. But you are right the new command will still be very armour heavy ....that is not surprising given the fact that AOR is Jammu Pathankot area.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Anoop » 18 Jul 2004 05:01

Hello,

There seems to be some confusion regarding the identity of elements to be split between the Western and South Western Commands. The news reports stop short placing XVII Corps in the Western Command, although it seems logical since 29 Div belongs to it and 26 Div may have come from the splitting up of the XVI Corps.

Though Adrian is right about the XI Corps having no RAPIDS, YIP is still right about the South Western Command being armour rich - because XI and XII Corps have between them two independent armoured and two mechanized brigades.

Also, does it seem plausible that the reorganization of the IA into these Commands makes it easier to interface with their counterparts in the IAF, perhaps as a prelude to the jointness called for in Cold Start?

YIP, could you please send me your write-up of the CS scenario you posted in the Ex. Divya Astra thread? My email is achengara AT yahoo DOT com? Thank you very much.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby adrian » 18 Jul 2004 06:38

I made an inadvertent error when I said existings IABGs from 16 Corps could be taken to form a strike corps ...I meant an armored divison......couple that with two (partially mechanized) divs and you have a strike corps ready. Easier said then done I suppose :-)

I am not sure why the newspaper mentions pathankot as a possible HQ for 10 corps. the corps already has a proper HQ somewhere in Punjab. A lot of confusion stems from the news report..... many a time the reporters misinterpret whatever they are told by the army spokesman and instead of clarifying they end up writing BS.

The 16 corps is gargatuan in proportion to other corps ...it has five reg divisons and three CI forces "alloted to it" which are equivalent to reg divs in terms of size. That is a total of eight divs for the corps.The carving of 16 corps into two separate corps has been a long time in coming and is a step forward in the right direction, same applies to the Northen Command ...logistical nightmare is the right word, must admit I am a little surprised they chose to call it South Western Command ...I thought it would be called North Western Command.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Y I Patel » 19 Jul 2004 18:14

Adrian thanks for catching the mistake. I interposed the two corps - 10 and 11. Like you said, the new command will have the Bhatinda based 10 corps with its two RAPIDS divs. They call it SW command because it will be wedged between the existing western and southern commands.

Anoop: done.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Philip » 19 Jul 2004 21:03

I've been enjoying the various comments on "Cold Start".One aim seems to be to short cut the usual time spent in drawing strike forces from reserves (normally sent to safe hideouts/bases)a safe distance away from the enemy's own strike and air forces.However,there seem to be several points that in the Indian context need to be clarified.

We were taken by complete surprise at Kargil.No one expected such a move from pak.Similarly,one can expect the enemy in the future to do the unexpected.While countering the incursion/invasion in the best manner possible,counter strike through "Cold Start" would then have to be planned with certain definite objectives (targets) in mind.These may even change once the conflict starts.It took us a long while to get organised in Kargil,given the extraordinary terrain involved, and the whole campaign took several weeks before we were able to assert our dominance.Cold Start must involve deep penetration into enemy territory,the captured territory to be used as bargaining chips after a cease-fire,or the capture and retention of certain strategic heights,mountain passes,cities,etc.Mobilising the required strike forces and sending them into action in the shortest time possible would have to involve basing such forces closer to the LOC/international border,and/or involving massive heavy airlift capabilities using both aircraft and helos if based further away,along with the usual rail and road networks.We would need several numbers of these strike forces given the length and breadth of our borders.Basing such forces closer to the border would bring them closer to attack from enemy air strikes.If these forces at their bases are not also dispersed,they become vulnerable to enemy massed missile strikes.Pak and China have numerous land attack missiles with enough reach for us to be cautious about ,along with the production capabilities for hundreds of such missiles being produced every year.

To my mind,the best response to any agression should be the immediate destruction of the enemy's strike capabilities in all dimensions (land,sea and air)through immediate massive rolling air strikes ,attacks from the sea,involving very large numbers of aircraft,ships and subs; preceded by several salvoes of hundreds of missile attacks and long range rocket barrages (Smerch,etc.)against the key enemy strongpoints,command centres,etc., of land,air and sea.The initial missile strikes would soften up the defences,destroy assets, disrupt communications,and reduce the capability of the defences for the airstrikes to follow,and give enough time for a quick mobilisation of key "commando" strike forces,highly mobile ,using a combination of paras,helos and fast moving/airlifted armour to secure key land objectives.One has to take into account enemy decoy and deception tactics,preservation of air defences through stealth,etc.,remembering how NATO air forces despite such overwhelming air superiority, were so off the mark in Kosovo,never forgetting that the batttlefield is terribly mobile and many targets might melt away in the "fog of war".

To achieve this would entail huge increases in offensive conventional weaponry,both in quantity and quality,particularly tactical missiles and PGMs.The air force would have to allot special strike squadrons and more multi-role aircraft totally dedicated to the requirements of the armoured/mechanised forces,apart from their other duties of achieving total air superiority,at least local,over the battlefields and counter-air strike.Numbers of heavy/medium lift transport aircraft and helos would have to be augmented.The IN would need larger numbers of long range missile armed surface ships,subs and naval air assets.The requirement of massive quantities of PG munitions for all forces is essential.Even the US was dismayed at the rapid depletion of cruise missiles and PGMs in the GW2.The cost of acquiring and stockpiling such weaponry would neccessitate a revolution in budgetary planning for the armed forces.

Most importantly in the Indian context,is the revolution in the thinking of our top brass.Such forces would have to have one commander for different sub-continental theatres/commands,as we have in the Andamans.Parochialism would invite certain defeat,that is if we keep thinking only of our own "turf and tribe".The concept of a CDS,while welcome,in the Indian context may be impossible to successfuilly implement,given the current nature and character of the different services involved.An important point to remember is that unlike the western nations and theeir "expeditionary forces";involving huge carrier task forces,foreign basing,etc.of inter-continetal dimensions,India does not have any expeditionary force or force projection capability outside the IOR.These forces justly demand theatre commanders.Even our amphibious forces are primarily meant for the defence and "re-capture" in the worst case, of our island territories.A CDS therefore for India is not needed IF the office of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs (held by rotation) is upgraded with better communications and capabilities as the apex body for combined action.A CDS in the opinion of some of the defence top brasss could be used (by babudom)to even downgrade the office of the current service chiefs!The service chief's tenure should be long enough so that each chief holds the post before he retires,perhaps making the service chief's tenure three years.A commonly held view is that the service chief's term is so short that before he sits comfortably in his seat to do some real work,he has to plan for retirement!The tri-service command in the Andamans is our guinea-pig.Let's see how successfully it functions and then we can see how best other similar joint commands can be established.When that happens,"Cold Start" can be given a warm welcome.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Johann » 19 Jul 2004 22:41

Originally posted by Anoop:
does it seem plausible that the reorganization of the IA into these Commands makes it easier to interface with their counterparts in the IAF, perhaps as a prelude to the jointness called for in Cold Start?
Anoop, I'm not sure how it would make things easier on the joint front.

Unless Western Air Command undergoes some kind of fission as well, its CO it seems will have to provide support to three Army theatre commands; Northern, Western and South-Western.

If SWC becomes the responsibility of SW Air Command, then that increases the number of IA commands the latter have to support as well.

It isnt going to be easy adjudicating inevitable resource conflicts between three or four 3-star officers in peace, let alone combat. That can be mitigated by strictly apportioning support beforehand at the CoSC level, but there would be a cost in operational flexibility.

As an outside observer it seems to me that the IA is still working on the huge challenge of determining the appropriate span of command for managing the enormous battlespace and forces involved between India and Pakistan. Unfortunately I have not seen many signs so far that the problem is being tackled from first principles as a joint issue.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby daulat » 20 Jul 2004 12:59

One option for the IAF is to go the US/USSR route of tactical air and strategic air forces

tac-air can be organised as per the army commands and be locked in to supporting each theatre, with 'swing capacity' to redeploy against other theatres as the situation warrants.

strat-air, say the M2k(N-equivs) and 2 seat Jags, can be managed separately and dedicated to their specific roles. strat could also have Su30 units dedicated to it

SW/Guj/Maharashtra commands would integrate the Navy and Naval-air components too, whilst the Tu22M's could be dotted lined to strat-air

however, as a lay person, such organisational entities make little sense to me. if any unit is tasked to any sector AND has the NECESSARY comms links and data links, then it can fulfil the mission it has been allocated. I would like an education from our uniformed colleagues on why the organisational entities are so important.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Johann » 20 Jul 2004 20:49

Daulat,

One of the key principles of warfighting is the 'selection and maintenance of the aim'.

Even after the commander's intent is understood it must also be clear at all times and all levels who is responsible for what.

That is the essence of command and control - communications is the enabler.

Higher command is a balancing act, reading the battle, chosing among the many options for action at a given point, and accordingly distributing or redistributing resources.

In order to do so a commander needs not just the appropriate signals set up, but sufficient *authority* to do so. The more levels of command he has to go through in order to secure agreement (if agreement can be secured), the slower the pace of the development of situation becomes.

The IA and IAF theatre commands are investing in systems to keep each other informed in 'real-time'. That is an important step, but it does not change the fact that they are two separate C2 chains. The only people who could compel agreement between say three army commands and the air command that supports all of them are the chiefs of the army and air staffs - if and when they themselves can come to an agreement.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Rudra » 20 Jul 2004 21:06

posted by sandyj at CDF: some points of interest for us maybe ?

---
America Converts First Division to New Format

June 10, 2004: The United States Army has finished converting its first division (the 3rd Infantry Division) to the new independent brigade system (IBS). The army has not got an official name for this yet, so let’s just call it the IBS. The main difference from the older ROAD style divisions is that instead of three brigades with three infantry or armored battalions each, plus a divisional reconnaissance battalion, there are now four brigades. Each ISB brigade has a reconnaissance battalion and two battalions containing armor and infantry companies. For decades, infantry and armor battalions have each had three infantry or armor companies, plus a headquarters company and, sometimes, a heavy weapons company. But the new IBS battalions have two tank companies, two infantry companies, an engineer company and a headquarters company.

Thus the new divisions have twelve combat battalions, versus eleven in the old style division (one of the old brigades had four battalions.) The extra battalion for the IBS division came from converting the division air defense battalion to a reconnaissance battalion. A fifth combat brigade in the ISB division has aircraft and larger UAVs. All brigades will have dozens of UAVs, but most of these have not been delivered yet.

The new ISB organization has elements in it that have been suggested for decades. The major one is putting armor and infantry units in the same battalion. It’s long been noted that tank battalions rarely operate by themselves, but exchange tank companies for infantry companies with infantry battalions when it comes time to fight. So, it has been suggested many times, why not organize the battalions in peacetime the way they operate in war time. “Tradition” and “maintenance problems” were the reasons most often given for not doing this. Both were bogus. The mechanized infantry companies are currently using “Infantry Fighting Vehicles” that are larger, and more powerful, than most tanks during World War II. All battalions have a mix of vehicles, and the maintenance people manage. They cope during wartime as well, when many infantry battalion commanders suddenly have a tank company or two to worry about.

The reorganization also moved most of the divisional artillery to the brigades, another common wartime practice that will now be a peacetime standard. Each brigade will have 16 self-propelled howitzers (two batteries of eight guns each, versus the old battalions that had three batteries of six guns each.)

Each brigade also has more supply and maintenance troops, making it easier to operate independently. Since the 3rd Infantry Division is the first to adopt the ISB organization, it will undergo many more changes as field exercises reveal things that should be changed. The final form of the ISB won't be known for several years.

The next division to undergo an ISB reorganization is the 10th Mountain Division. This is a "light infantry" unit, without any tanks and other armored vehicles. But the same organizational format will be used.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby NRao » 20 Jul 2004 21:07

The IA and IAF theatre commands are investing in systems to keep each other informed in 'real-time'.
Real-time is THE goal of network-centric warfare. No matter what the protocols are, NC should - ultimatly - overcome any lag/resistance or built-in lethargy in a system.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Johann » 20 Jul 2004 21:55

Niranjan,

1) communications do not grant authority on their own. Authority is something granted by one living, breathing human being to another and as such is jealously guarded.

2) A secure telephone is also a 'real-time communication system'.

3) Being able to access each others digital maps and look at the pins on them at the theatre command level does not imply that the knowledge is perfect, or that the pins are being updated in real time by automated systems.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 08:35

Originally posted by Rudra Singha:
posted by sandyj at CDF: some points of interest for us maybe ?

---
America Converts First Division to New Format
Sandyj was USMC, mostly working at the HQ level. He was too busy collecting info to evaluate. Thus, his postings should always be geared into looking for specific pieces of info rather than taking the piece litterally.

The piece itself is from Strategypage. With the exceptions of Col Austin and LCol Robel, the site should be taken with truckload of salt. This piece couldn't even get the terms right. It's Units of Actions, not IBS, but already reverting back to the traditional name brigade combat teams.

This being said, one should first understand what is lost with this re-org. There is a corresponding shift in cbt effect with the TOE shift from div to bde. What this means is that div cannot divide up its assets as it sees fit. It can only throw an entire bde which may not be what's necessary. The DAG (Divisional Artillery Group) is gone as is the recee arm'd calv sqn (ala 3-7Cav). None of the current recee bns in the UAs would approach 3-7Cav in arm'd punch.

A div is more than three to five bdes. It is an echelon with its assets uniquely designed to support div lvl goals.

These bdes will work. The Canadians and the British have long proven it beyond a shadow of a doubt. However, bdes cannot and do not replace div and no matter how well you define bde lvl ops, sooner or later, you will need a div lvl op and that is where this re-org is wanting.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 08:42

Originally posted by Niranjan Rao:
Real-time is THE goal of network-centric warfare. No matter what the protocols are, NC should - ultimatly - overcome any lag/resistance or built-in lethargy in a system.
washingtonpost.com
Boeing Bets on 'Net-Centric' Warfare

The Associated Press
Tuesday, July 6, 2004; 11:25 AM

TACOMA, Wash. -- The Boeing Co. hopes to be a big player in "net-centric" warfare, launched two years ago when a Special Forces operative used a hand-held global-positioning device and a laptop to guide B-52 strikes against terrorist positions in Afghanistan.

"Net-centric operations" allow ground forces to communicate through a computer web with airborne and other units. The technology enables front-line troops and commanders in the rear to get a true picture of the battlefield and shortens response time.

Boeing recently offered reporters access to a usually classified facility in suburban Virginia, where the company offered a 90-minute demonstration, The News Tribune of Tacoma, Wash., reported Monday.

In the series of simulated exercises, aircraft - F/A-18s, F-15s, EA-18s, unmanned aerial vehicles, command-and-control planes, tilt-motor V-22s, Apache and CH-47 helicopters - ground commanders, ship-borne commanders and others were linked for simulated attacks, defense against attacks and extraction of troops caught behind enemy lines.

"The capabilities are mind-boggling," said Jim Albaugh, who heads Boeing's Integrated Defense Systems program.

"For many years it used to be about force. Now, it's all about networks - who can see first, who can react first," he said.

Chicago-based Boeing has invested $500 million to develop net-centric technology and the Pentagon is committed to a 21st-century fighting force. But there are skeptics.

"It's a fine idea," said Loren Thompson, a defense analyst with the Lexington Institute in Arlington, Va. "But will it work? The jury is still out."

Thompson said the idea was an outgrowth of the dot-com boom of the early 1990s, and might have deflated like the boom itself.

"You could say we are getting ready to fight a dot-com war at a time when the enemy is more conventional," he said. "It seems better suited to fighting countries rather than guerrillas. If we were fighting the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics), it might be effective."

In theory, Thompson said, net-centric operations can apply to any threat, from conventional warfare to terrorism. But he said results in Iraq, where insurgents strike without warning, have been "ambiguous."

Other analysts agree.

"I'm not sure anyone knows where we are headed," said Chris Hellman, with the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation in Washington, D.C.

Hellman said net-centric operations offer commanders potential for a "situational awareness" previously out of reach. The system can serve as a "force multiplier" that allows commanders to focus the firepower of even a small contingent of troops.

"They could face data overload," he said. "How much information is enough, how much is too much?"

Boeing acknowledges current limitations.

"What you saw in Iraqi Freedom combined with Afghanistan was the first net-centric warfare," said Carl O'Berry, a vice president of Boeing's defense team. "But it wasn't robust enough. There were weaknesses."

Company officials have estimated the market for net-centric systems could reach $200 billion over the next 10 years, for communications networks, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance projects, command-and-control integration and systems to provide global situational awareness.

Boeing and another company won a $15 billion contract last year for a program that will further improve the ability of soldiers on the ground to communicate with aircraft. This year, Boeing won a contract to develop new combat systems for the Army that could be worth $4 billion over five years.

Every Boeing-produced fighter jet, command-and-control plane, helicopter, unmanned vehicle or other craft, including the Navy's new multimission aircraft, will be equipped to link with net-centric operations, Albaugh said.

Boeing has been struggling with ethics issues recently in its dealings with the Pentagon, but Albaugh noted earlier this summer that the company has won tens of billions of dollars in new defense orders despite the scandals.

© 2004 The Associated Press

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 08:46

Aside from the $500mil price tag not even for a working system, there is a serious fundamental flaw not stated in the article - that COMMSEC might as well be open speakers at a rock and roll concert - telling the enemy where you are.

It is impossible to have radio silence since the computers must talk to each other constantly. With that kind of traffic, the enemy doesn't need to find you, you've just told them where you are.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 09:08

And my army is banking on Net Centric Warfare - not a pretty sight

Army, Maple Leaf, 07 July 2004, Vol. 7 No. 25

Armée, La feuille d'érable, Le 07 juillet 2004, Vol. 7 No. 25

Army Transformation to begin affectingmore units, branches
By Paul Mooney

Army Transformation will affect an increasing number of soldiers and units over the next two years as the medium-weight, knowledge-based force takes shape.

Defence and international policy reviews are underway and the Army continues to experience funding pressures. Senior commanders say, however, that the Army is moving in the right direction and transformation must continue.

Colonel Mike Kampman, Director of Land Strategic Planning, said recently that the senior leadership of the Army recognizes that change is difficult, disruptive and causes uncertainty.

“But this is absolutely essential,” he said. “It is being done for the future relevance and capability of the Army. So everything that has been introduced in the last year and a bit—in terms of movement of vehicles and so on—is about to become bigger. The Transformation agenda will expand to include more and more parts of the Army—more branches and more units will be affected.”

Plans for Fiscal Year 05-06 and beyond are contained in the annual Land Force Command Strategic Operations and Resource Direction (SORD) released in late May. (See below). The SORD is the first step in a process which sets out the Army’s operations and spending plans. Area commanders and their staffs are now being consulted about the plan and their input will help shape the final draft of the directives, which will be issued in December. While the SORD may be modified after the consultations with Area Commanders, it represents the overall intent of the Army’s senior leadership.

Soldiers will begin to see more of the ways transformation will affect units next year. For example, plans include the creation of a single Long-Range Anti-Armour Weapon company (LAV TOW Under Armour) within the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians), manned by personnel from Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry battalions. In FY 06-07, they will be joined by air defence soldiers as ADATS (later MMEV) becomes part of the Army’s medium-range direct fire “System of systems”. Armour soldiers from LdSH (RC) will man the planned Mobile Gun System, the third platform in the direct fire system, when that vehicle is integrated into the field force. Soldiers from branches that have not normally served together will be working together in the same unit with new, powerful capability—the real face of Army Transformation.

Col Kampman explained that the elimination of mortar and pioneer platoons was done in order to base the force generation of those capabilities in branches where those skills were part of their core business, as well as to reallocate resources to new capability. That transformation is continuing with the concentration of the long-range anti-armour capability, the TOW capability, in Western Canada.

“That means the anti-armour platoons in Infantry battalions are about to disappear,” he said. “It is not, however, a net loss to the infantry. We’re taking all of those people and resources and reinvesting them back in the rifle companies—we’re reinforcing the rifle companies.”

Col Kampman said he knows people are impatient for orders and want to get on with it. But it will take time to work through some of the complex planning involved and do it right.“

A lot of the detail about many of the changes will be coming out in directives over the coming months,” he said. “Up to now we’ve been dealing a lot with the infantry and armour. Now we’re about to really tackle the artillery and engineer branches. The other one that is looming is the Army Support Review and its impact on the logistics and EME branches.”

SORD 05-06

The 2005-2006 Strategic Operations and Resource Direction (SORD), was released at the end of May. The commander is now consulting the areacommanders and their staffs; a final plan will be drafted later this year to include their input. The SORD includes:

Combat Capability

The development of the Medium Direct Fire System of systems will continue with the concentration of medium direct fire platforms in the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians), (LdSH(RC))including:

The creation of a single Long Range Anti-Armour Weapon (LRAAW) company (LAV Tow Under Armour) within the LdSH(RC) structure manned by personnel from Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry battalions.

The elimination of anti-armour platoons in the infantry battalions with personnel not required to establish the LRAAW company being reinvested back into the rifle companies.

The reassignment of select positions in the LdSH(RC) RHQ from armour to infantry and artillery in order to establish the appropriate combination of direct fire expertise in the C2 structure.

The planning for the integration of an ADATS (later MMEV) battery into the LdSH(RC) structure with implementation expected to begin in FY 06-07.

Reconnaissance-Surveillance. As components of the ISTAR system, RECCE and surveillance structures will evolve, including:

The elimination of the assault troops in the three Regular Force armoured regiments.

The conversion of the LdSH(RC) RECCE squadron to the same Transitional Surveillance Squadron structure as the Coyote squadrons in RCD and 12 RBC.

The development of new structures for Coyote squadrons in accordance with the evolution of the ISTAR capability.

The completion of the conversion of Regular Force infantry RECCE platoons from Coyote to LUVW (C&R).

The completion of the conversion of Reserve Armoured Corps units to LUVW (C&R) to include the removal of AVGP Cougar from service.

The establishment of a tactical unmanned air vehicule (Spewer) sub-unit.

Ground-based Air Defence. The transformation of GBAD will progress pending ministerial approval and DND direction, including:

The removal of 35mm gun/Skyguard from service.

The removal of Javelin MANPADS from service and the assignment of Reserve air defence elements to new roles based on LFRR planning and consultation.

The continuation of ADATS involvement in direct fire system of systems trials, slated for this fall, with the expectation of implementation of ADATS integration into the direct fire unit commencing in FY 06-07.

Indirect Fire. The transformation of the indirect fire capability will continue in FY 05-06, including:

The elimination of the last mortar platoon structure in the Infantry with complete responsibility for mortar force generation transferred to the artillery.

The completion of the artillery branch restructure plan, including the development of structures for target acquisition, observation, fire support co-ordination and close support, with select implementation in FY 05-06 and the expectation of full implementation in FY 06-07.

Engineer Capabilities. The transformation of Engineer capabilities in 05-06 will include:

The establishment of a single Armoured Engineer Squadron in 1 CER with the concentration of all AEVs and AVLBs.

The completion of plans for intimate and close support capability force generation, with an expectation of restructure implementation starting in FY 06-07.

The completion of plans for general support capability force generation.

Command Support. The development of Command Support in 05-06 will include:

The completion of plans for Command Support capability force generation with select implementation of 05-06 and full implementation starting in 06-07.

Combat Service Support. Combat Service Support transformation in 05-06 will include:

The completion of restructure planning resulting from the Army Support Review with select implementation in 05-06 and the expectation of full implementation in 06-07.

Institutional Capability

The Army will continue to develop and improve institutional capability including:

Further development of the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre (CMTC), the Army’s state-of-the art training facility at Wainwright, Alta

The evolution of LFC Command and Control.

The Army Support Review will lead to select implementation of improvements to Garrison Support with the expectation of full implementationin 06-07.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 10:43

I would like to point out the difference between Western and Russian/Chinese JF ops. In the Western model, all assets can be detached and assigned to non-organic units as the need arises. This is the case where you would have a FOO bellycrawler corporal telling a birdbrain full colonel what to hit, where, and when to hit.

The Russian/Chinese model is that everybody got a job to do and nobody interferes in each other's job. The birds got free reign over a battle area for x hours. After that, they're restricted to 10,000 feet. Any hostile below that would be the responsibility of the ground based AD. At x+y hour, the birds leave the battle area period regardless if they've done their jobs or not. They don't talk to each other and they don't shoot at each other which also means that they can't help each other other than by doing their assigned jobs right.

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby Johann » 21 Jul 2004 11:24

Originally posted by wyu:
A div is more than three to five bdes. It is an echelon with its assets uniquely designed to support div lvl goals.

These bdes will work. The Canadians and the British have long proven it beyond a shadow of a doubt. However, bdes cannot and do not replace div and no matter how well you define bde lvl ops, sooner or later, you will need a div lvl op and that is where this re-org is wanting.
The change that will last I suspect is formally pushing planning and responsibility for the training-readiness-deployment-recovery cycle down to the brigade level.

The divisions do not seem to be going away - the 'Unit of Employment x' is supposed to control 'at least 6' UAs, presumably 3 manoeuvre plus aviation, CSS and artilllery in the generic situation.

Re. Canadian army re-organisation, the idea of pushing mortars in to artillery seems unfortunate. How are mortar platoons (sorry, troops) going to be assigned to infantry units? What is the command relationship going to be and will Bn and Coy training be affected?

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby wyu » 21 Jul 2004 18:44

I suspect div would follow the way of corps (when was the last time we had a corps lvl exercise?) and that future div lvl actions would be individual bde actions as was the case with V Corps as a collection of individual div lvl actions in the Iraq War.

RE: CF re-org

Our light bns (3 RCR, 3 PPCLI, and 3 R22eR) always relied on non-organic cbt spt to flush out their ranks. 3 PPCLI in Afghanistan relied on a mortar team from 1RCHA and engr recee from 1CER. The light bns, comprising only of a foot coy and a jump coy, were always lacking in the cbt spt coy.

What's happenning is that the mech inf bns are lossing their assualt pioneer, mortar, and anti-tank pltns (going to engr, guns, and arm'd regts respectively).

What has been extremely heavily emphasised on is that Land Force would become a medium weight, knowledge based force (in other words, banking on network centric warfare as if it is tomorrow), and putting real hard emphasis on recee.

The assumption is that such knowledge base would allow the flexibility to hold in tac res much more limited cbt spt assets to respond to any bn that is in trouble.

This was always the case with FOOs and CAS. Land Force just push this to the extreme in dealing with other cbt spt assets.

This can work but would require a whole bunch of co-ordination and co-operation yet unseen in any army. If the people are determined to make this work, then it will work. I mean everybody from troop/platoon to brigade, especially brigade because it’s their assets that they must manage properly and give priority to battalion level operations instead of brigade level ones.

However, most people have their own little empires to protect and the turf wars are going to be extremely difficult to overcome.

I also don’t know if the technology is mature enough for this kind of balancing act. You only have limited mortar, anti-tank, and engr recee troops and they must goto the battalion in need and not to the battalion who thinks it is in need. The natural tendency is to deny the reserve battalion of these assets – well, when you need your reserve battalion, the crap has already hit the fan and your balancing act is out the window and you have a reserve battalion without the assets it needs to do its job.

The Canadians have always been on the bleeding edge of doctrine development and not always a good thing. This reminds me a whole bunch of the 10-90 battalions (10% regforce, 90% reserves). The idea was to have a 10% regforce cadre to act as the foundation for the 90% reserves to be brought up to speed in minimal time. Didn’t work partially because of the difference in requirements between regforce and reserves (can’t expect reserves to behave in a brigade manner when they’ve been trained, equipped, nor exposed to that echelon).

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Re: Cold Start: An analysis

Postby NRao » 21 Jul 2004 21:40

1) communications do not grant authority on their own. Authority is something granted by one living, breathing human being to another and as such is jealously guarded.
If imperfections are taken for granted, not much tech can do to improve those imperfections. BUT, if granting authority is an issue (by itself - and I understand that there are humans involved) tech can contribute - in real-time (granted we have to define real-time). (I understand you PoV. It is one of the major reasons that we spend a ton on "homeland security" and still get very little out of it. But the fault is not that of an imperfect technology. It is human imperfections - the reason that Rome fell.)

2) A secure telephone is also a 'real-time communication system'.
There are better options - specially now-a-days. But your point is well taken.

3) Being able to access each others digital maps and look at the pins on them at the theatre command level does not imply that the knowledge is perfect, or that the pins are being updated in real time by automated systems.
NC is SUPPOSED to remove any such imperfections. (There is a reason for those imperfectly placed pins - I mean those pins do not just fall from heaven or do they?. Technology can at the very least reduce such imperfections. It can be further reduced if humans set their egos aside - IMVHO.)

As an aside, I see CS as a marriage between policy and implementation of that policy. The armed forces are but a component to implement that policy. Granted this is very (too) simplified version of my brain dump, but IMHO, protocols should not add to the burden of implementating a policy. I cannot see *any* progress being made if there is a podunk in the chain of command who puts his head in the sand.


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