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FORCE 2025: Informing the Army’s future structure

IKnowNothing

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Reading around more, I found a much better communicated vision of what I was trying to get at with the Lav infantry consolidation:

My personal opinion is that deploying a Division or even a full Brigade Group to Europe would be a poor use of Canadian defence dollars. To my mind that money would be better spent on things like:
.........
  • Invest in building a well-equipped, high-readiness rapid reaction light force that could quickly deploy to Europe in case of an invasion or heightened tensions. Needs to include lots of AT and AA capability within the force. Objective would be to rapidly increase deterrence once a build-up is detected or to blunt/slow the initial attack if it occurs in order give time for heavier forces to be deployed.
    • Alternately heavily invest in SHORAD, MRAD and Long Range Precision Fires (HIMARS) capabilities which can be rapidly air deployed to Europe in support of allied ground troops in case of conflict.
 

Kirkhill

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Meanwhile - how to train and where?

Col. James Kidd, director of range training programs for the service’s Training and Education Command, said when it comes to using emerging technologies such as long-range precision fires, loitering munitions and unmanned systems, “even at our most expansive range complexes, we're quickly outrunning what we can do in those training areas.”

 

Kirkhill

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Meanwhile, an update on the USMC's Force 2030 drive

The link to the Force 2030 Update is embedded in the USNI article

Highlights

IndoPacific

MEF III will continue to take the lead on the MLR (Marine Littoral Regiment) concept while generating and maintaining an MEU
MEF I will continue as the largest USMC Force and maintain its ability to generate a MAGTF and sustain MEUs while operating out of Darwin, Australia

Global Response

MEF II will focus on developing a 3-Star Joint Task Force HQ in addition to its MAGTFs. JTF procedures to borrow heavily from the USMC Air element.
Marine Reserves to be closely aligned with MEF II


MLRs likely to be realigned with Artillery or Recce instead of the Infantry

LAR Bns likely to be moved away from the LAV to a more platform independent, sensor heavy structure but still based on small teams.

Infantry Bns to continue with small, dispersed, sensor rich teams that are independent of means of mobility. Augmentation with Precision Weapons. Carl Gustav to feature as a key element emphasising it Multi-Functional suite of munitions. Switchblade/Hero type munitions to feature. 60mm mortars to be retained in the arms locker for the Platoon Commander to access on a mission needs basis. 81mm mortars to be retained at the rate of 2 per company. They could be held at battalion or at company. TBD.

Still emphasising Long Range Fires and littoral movements.


More on the Marine Littoral Regiment - still in development but first and foremost it is a rapidly deployable strategic asset


A key goal of the littoral regiments is to build a unit that can strategically deploy to where it is needed quickly, shifting away from the traditional deployment cycle where marines spend six months preparing, six months deployed and six months of rest.


 

markppcli

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3 x 7 of rifle, LMG, over-and-unders; no additional crew weapons.
1 x 7 of crew weapons (3 teams of whatever is mission appropriate).
No additional people or vehicles.
I think in a mechanized context you can shorten up that weapons section given that you have much greater organic direct fire. Which, annoyingly, is exactly what’s detailed in Infantry Platoon in battle.

7 man sections gives you a leader, with two three man groups to get his job done. Add in the vehicle and we’re still within that golden rule of three.

@KevinB I don’t envy the section commander who has to wrangle 2 LAVs, and I presume 4 fire teams of 3 ? I suppose he could have a 2 IC handle 2 of them while he handles 2. But then we’ve just arrived at two sections grouped together. I don’t generally disagree that 6 man sections are light on the ground, I just feel that the section should be seen as the smallest indivisible grouping of infantry. What you’ve described is actually very similar to what the Brazilians do where the platoon operates in two “sections” each of two “groups.” Those groups are equivalent to what we would call a section.

 

markppcli

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What is the "rule of three?"
I’m trying to find a source for where I got that phrase in my head. It’s essentially saying that a leader or commander shouldn’t be in charge of more than 3 elements at any given time. Obviously that’s hazy and blurry at times.
 

Brad Sallows

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It sounds like an attempt to fix the optimum value of the guideline that span of control should fall between 2 and 5, inclusive.
 

Infanteer

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There is a growing rumble among the analyst community that Ukraine is just playing for a stalemate right now. There will be no offensive until they are either forced into one or they are ready. The Ukrainian gov't has stated that it will take at least till June to digest, train, and equip units with NATO equipment.

Using the info @KevinB has gotten the first large amount of US equipment that isn't artillery or defensive weapons is in Poland and being handed over soon. In my mind, we're about three to four weeks out before those formations are properly ready to hit the battle line.

Kharkiv's significance may be related to this... I don't know who this dude is but its an interesting point. If this is correct Ukraine by trying to sit astride the Russian's LOC's to Izium from the north, limiting their ability to sustain operations there. We have stated that this modern war seems to be one of artillery after all.


They are amateurs compared to the Afghans.

I’m trying to find a source for where I got that phrase in my head. It’s essentially saying that a leader or commander shouldn’t be in charge of more than 3 elements at any given time. Obviously that’s hazy and blurry at times.
Ahh...got it. Span of control. It's written write into our command doctrine that 2-5 is ideal. There is a foundation behind this.
 

daftandbarmy

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I’m trying to find a source for where I got that phrase in my head. It’s essentially saying that a leader or commander shouldn’t be in charge of more than 3 elements at any given time. Obviously that’s hazy and blurry at times.

It was an article in Inc. magazine:

The U.S. Marine Corps Uses the Rule of 3 to Organize Almost Everything. Here's How Learning It 21 Years Ago Changed My Life

 

Brad Sallows

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Oh, and I had forgotten the iconoclast solution:
4 x 3 in vehicle crews and 4 x 5 in dismount groups
2 spaces in each vehicle for extras (I/C, 2I/C, signaller, medic, videographer, DJ, etc)
 

FJAG

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My answer: continue to provide enough training money for the companies to exercise a lot of different scenarios, every year, so that all of the "it depends" variations are worked through, using the as-is equipment and people.]
My answer is create a trials and evaluation organization, work it out and then publish it as doctrine and implement it through training so that people do not have to reinvent the wheel continuously.

🍻
 

KevinB

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I think in a mechanized context you can shorten up that weapons section given that you have much greater organic direct fire. Which, annoyingly, is exactly what’s detailed in Infantry Platoon in battle.

7 man sections gives you a leader, with two three man groups to get his job done. Add in the vehicle and we’re still within that golden rule of three.

@KevinB I don’t envy the section commander who has to wrangle 2 LAVs, and I presume 4 fire teams of 3 ? I suppose he could have a 2 IC handle 2 of them while he handles 2. But then we’ve just arrived at two sections grouped together. I don’t generally disagree that 6 man sections are light on the ground, I just feel that the section should be seen as the smallest indivisible grouping of infantry. What you’ve described is actually very similar to what the Brazilians do where the platoon operates in two “sections” each of two “groups.” Those groups are equivalent to what we would call a section.

Brazilians also drop grenades from Helicopters in internal Police actions ;)



My theory with the big section was you have now 2 M/Cpl’s in the section too - so if you have 3 groups (which would be split in the vehicles (I’m aware ain’t ideal) where the SGT has 1 team and 2 M/Cpl as team leaders to - or you have the SGT and support guy somewhat separate and two M/Cpl lead teams that take direction from the SGT.
It also creates a casualty backup - and a large pool to select SGT’s from.

My main issue rests with the issue that any urban/subterranean or other more complex terrain is significantly manpower intensive- and you can’t use the LAV for it, and casualties quickly make a small section stuck without significant assets to support.
 

Mountie

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3 x 7 of rifle, LMG, over-and-unders; no additional crew weapons.
1 x 7 of crew weapons (3 teams of whatever is mission appropriate).
No additional people or vehicles.
This means a company of 3 platoons with a total of 9 rifle sections and 3 weapons sections.

How about a company of 4 platoons with a total of 8 rifle sections and 4 weapons sections? This would require a fourth platoon headquarters and one additional LAV-6.0, but would give the company four manoeuvre elements and would swap a rifle section for an additional weapons section giving it 33% more crew-served weapons.

Platoon Headquarters (9+1 Attached)
  • 1 x 3-member Command Group (Platoon Commander, Platoon Warrant & Platoon Signaller)
  • 1 x 3-member Assault Pioneer Group (M3 CG)
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group
  • Medical Technician* (Attached)

2 x Rifle Section (10)
  • Section Commander
  • 2 x 3-member Assault Group
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group

1 x Support Section (10)
  • Section Commander
  • 2 x 3-member Support Group (GMPG & DMR per group)
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group
 

markppcli

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Brazilians also drop grenades from Helicopters in internal Police actions ;)



My theory with the big section was you have now 2 M/Cpl’s in the section too - so if you have 3 groups (which would be split in the vehicles (I’m aware ain’t ideal) where the SGT has 1 team and 2 M/Cpl as team leaders to - or you have the SGT and support guy somewhat separate and two M/Cpl lead teams that take direction from the SGT.
It also creates a casualty backup - and a large pool to select SGT’s from.

My main issue rests with the issue that any urban/subterranean or other more complex terrain is significantly manpower intensive- and you can’t use the LAV for it, and casualties quickly make a small section stuck without significant assets to support.
So you have 1 MCpl crew commander, 1 as a 2 IC. If we have two LAVs I’m assuming you’re adding a third to command that other LAV? Or do we have two crew commanders and two team leads? That’s where get to to are these “teams” not just those same small sections?

I think the manpower issue just means you need to commit more platoons or sections to that task. Mechanized troops get their faster but have less foot print. For the record reports from Ukrainian urban fighting cite heavy use of 30mm to support that infantry. So it’s not as though it always doesn’t matter but get your point that 4 “stacks” for the platoon isn’t ideal.

Either way we’re probably better to move this to the infantry paper napkin thread.
 

daftandbarmy

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This means a company of 3 platoons with a total of 9 rifle sections and 3 weapons sections.

How about a company of 4 platoons with a total of 8 rifle sections and 4 weapons sections? This would require a fourth platoon headquarters and one additional LAV-6.0, but would give the company four manoeuvre elements and would swap a rifle section for an additional weapons section giving it 33% more crew-served weapons.

Platoon Headquarters (9+1 Attached)
  • 1 x 3-member Command Group (Platoon Commander, Platoon Warrant & Platoon Signaller)
  • 1 x 3-member Assault Pioneer Group (M3 CG)
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group
  • Medical Technician* (Attached)

2 x Rifle Section (10)
  • Section Commander
  • 2 x 3-member Assault Group
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group

1 x Support Section (10)
  • Section Commander
  • 2 x 3-member Support Group (GMPG & DMR per group)
  • 1 x 3-member LAV Group

That would be an insane amount of bodies and equipment to try and control for one platoon.

A platoon has to be like a starving Rottweiler: lean and mean and ready to fight to the death at close quarters on a moment's notice.

A Platoon Commander needs to be able to, literally, point in one direction and know that every fanatic under his/ her command will ferociously swarm the enemy, instantly and expertly, as required.

If they fail, the OC should be confident that at least our glorious teenaged Infantry dead have piled up in front of the enemy's MGs in such a way as to provide defilade for the rest of the Company to safely manoevre to complete a victorious slaughter, and exact their revenge on the enemy.

We need to shake the GWOT-itis out of our Shemaghs and get our War Faces on. Turning the Rifle Platoon Commander into a Mini-Field Marshall is diametrically opposed to that goal and pure folly, especially in General War.

Oops... is it H-Hr already? Sorry, gotta jet ;)

adam baldwin fullmetal jacket GIF
 

Mountie

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That would be an insane amount of bodies and equipment to try and control for one platoon.

A platoon has to be like a starving Rottweiler: lean and mean and ready to fight to the death at close quarters on a moment's notice.
Huh???

It's he exactly the same size as the current rifle platoon. It's just exchanging a rifle section for a weapons section. The company would have 8 rifle sections and 4 weapons sections, not the platoon.
 

FJAG

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Here are some new thoughts drawing on comparisons to allied structures: https://www.cfc.forces.gc.ca/259/290/24/192/Tremaine.pdf
Oh my.

I do have some issues with the end product of a RegF and a ResF division even though I greatly applaud his conclusion that the divisional and ResF headquarters should be reduced and consolidated. Even eliminating CMTC is on my bucket list.

My problem is that this is a very simplistic staff paper for the CFC. It really doesn't deal with the major issue (which at the beginning is the manpower shortages). It's discussion portion is virtually non existent barely touching on two examples from the US and Australia. Finally it jumps into conclusions and recommendations that seem to have been pulled out of a hat (or somewhere else).

Folks - we've had better and more carefully researched and articulated solutions in this forum from multiple folks.

Is this the best that CFC can turn out these days? Sorry if I sound too critical ... but.

:unsure:
 

McG

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My problem is that this is a very simplistic staff paper for the CFC.
Well, it is a service paper, which are the smallest of the different sorts papers that CFC publishes each year. It has to stay more focused on a single aspect of a problem, as opposed to the analysis that goes into the course project papers.
 
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