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FORCE 2025: Informing the Army’s future structure

FJAG

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What do troops train on at home if we put all the vehicles, weapons, and equipment for a tank squadron, engineer squadron, and artillery battery in Latvia for a few exercises a year?
... and if the collective of eFP BGs fail to deter then all those resources are lost before the defeat battle.
When we weren't out on fall, winter or spring gun camp we were sweeping the gun park and doing other not so bang, bang things. Bullets (even Militia ones) are pricey and you can't go out shooting every day. There's lots of training that doesn't involved the big gear.

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McG

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When do troops learn how to use “the big gear” if it is all parked on another continent? How many fewer people get to experience resourced collective training because the kit is held out of country?

You say that you want all this kit in Latvia so our troops can experience combined arms training. There will be a whole lot less of that experience if we have balanced our resources so that Europe is the only place to do the training.
... And the little Adazi training area is not the best place to really stretch mechanized training. We have better at home.
 

TangoTwoBravo

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I don't want to turn this into an EFP thread, but it should be noted that the EFP in Latvia has all sorts of capability from the contributing nations. I just think it is sad that our best equipment for conventional operations sits in Canada. Foundational training, while important, should not be an end in and of itself.
 

markppcli

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Just curious though. How is this problem managed when the battalion is carried operationally by RCAF rotary and fixed wing assets, or RCN boats or even Service Battalion trucks? And is there an agreed standard within the battalions on the roles of the LAV Captains and Sgts once the Rifles have dismounted?
The standard once dismounted is the the LAV Capt and Sgts fight the Vehicles, do a large degree they also managed the advance with most Pl Comd staying in th back on the advance, avoids the confusion of getting out of the turret under contact. Having never been deployed via RCN Boat, or Truck for an operation I frankly can't say, although I would imagine they would just slot into their respective organization as extra HQ elements. During my couple air mobile operations on Ex, the Helos dropped off the dismounts to seize vital ground while the LAVs punched through to them as "cavalry" - under the command of the Limas.

In reference to your comments about the "big targets" of IFV born infantry, I see your argument, but in todays battle field with mass proliferation of IR and II optics, your infantry platoon is a target regardless. I would rather be vulnerable to a BTR companies 3 m111 stands than every single one of their MGs as I advance to their position for example. Of course your vulnerable to tanks, but that's what your tanks are for.

The Estonian exercise is interesting, but a lot of the Baltic countries are doing things "in extremis" not in ideal. Absolutely stuff we should look at, but if we're trying to set goals for organization maybe no out best goal post. (I am however a big fan of the Latvian Spike teams rolling around in little ATVs)

Lastly, I don't know that anyone was dismounting the .50 of the M1113 under contact. In the defense sure, but not on the attack, and to try an equate the capability of an m1113's .50 to a LAV turret in terms of direct fires is... well it's apples and oranges in the extreme.

(apologies for the late reply, I was lost in the woods of Gagetown with OCdts)
 
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daftandbarmy

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The standard once dismounted is the the LAV Capt and Sgts fight the Vehicles, do a large degree they also managed the advance with most Pl Comd staying in th back on the advance, avoids the confusion of getting out of the turret under contact. Having never been deployed via RCN Boat, or Truck for an operation I frankly can't say, although I would imagine they would just slot into their respective organization as extra HQ elements. During my couple air mobile operations on Ex, the Helos dropped off the dismounts to seize vital ground while the LAVs punched through to them as "cavalry" - under the command of the Limas.

In reference to your comments about the "big targets" of IFV born infantry, I see your argument, but in todays battle field with mass proliferation of IR and II optics, your infantry platoon is a target regardless. I would rather be vulnerable to a BTR companies 3 m111 stands than every single one of their MGs as I advance to their position for example. Of course your vulnerable to tanks, but that's what your tanks are for.

The Estonian exercise is interesting, but a lot of the Baltic countries are doing things "in extremis" not in ideal. Absolutely stuff we should look at, but if we're trying to set goals for organization maybe no out best goal post. (I am however a big fan of the Latvian Spike teams rolling around in little ATVs)

Lastly, I don't know that anyone was dismounting the .50 of the M1113 under contact. In the defense sure, but not on the attack, and to try an equate the capability of an m1113's .50 to a LAV turret in terms of direct fires is... well it's apples and oranges in the extreme.

(apologies for the late reply, I was lost in the woods of Gagetown with OCdts)

A great argument for providing even more, and more effective, suppressive fire via the artillery, mortars etc.

(And did you find the Franco Platoon's rifle? :) ).
 

markppcli

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Sure, know what's great about advancing in IFVs? You can button up and get even closer to the enemy before the mortars and artillery have to let up. All while engaging their dug in positions with more direct fires.

by the way, if we can manage the Estonians level of Anti Armour capability I'll be a happy camper: sect lvl 84s, Coy has Milan (soon to be spike), Bn has Javelin, and theres a Bde Anti Tank coy with more ATGMs.

(oh I'm just here temporarily I was more dealing with "umm I think it's a swamp" "well thank god our boots are already wet eh?"
 

Infanteer

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Why are we talking about who commands a LAV in a thread about the Canadian Army's force structure? It's a command arrangement, not a structural one.
 

dapaterson

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Why are we talking about who commands a LAV in a thread about the Canadian Army's force structure? It's a command arrangement, not a structural one.
Because Canada confuses sub-tactical argument with grand strategy?
 

markppcli

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Why are we talking about who commands a LAV in a thread about the Canadian Army's force structure? It's a command arrangement, not a structural one.
Well in an army as small as ours, and in the context of Force 2025 involving no major expansion or expendatures, the employment of the Army's largest AFV fleet defines the structures of 11/12 maneurve units, and therefore it's Bdes. The value of number of pers, or holding units becomes a question of if the structure works or we do we need / should we have an IFV squadron / regiment in each Bde?
 

Kirkhill

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Why are we talking about who commands a LAV in a thread about the Canadian Army's force structure? It's a command arrangement, not a structural one.
Because desks are made of quarks, hadrons, baryons and mesons?

And we buy the elements from which we construct the grand strategy desk by the quark?
 

Kirkhill

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Well in an army as small as ours, and in the context of Force 2025 involving no major expansion or expendatures, the employment of the Army's largest AFV fleet defines the structures of 11/12 maneurve units, and therefore it's Bdes. The value of number of pers, or holding units becomes a question of if the structure works or we do we need / should we have an IFV squadron / regiment in each Bde?
What he said.
 

Infanteer

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Yes, but that misses the point. The LAV needs a crew commander, needs a gunner, and needs a driver. Which section that person belongs to and what cap badge he or she wears is irrelevant to the Army's structure for 2025, as those positions need to be filled.

If you're advocating shelving platforms because of changes to numbers of sub-units, then we're talking about something different.
 

MilEME09

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Well in an army as small as ours, and in the context of Force 2025 involving no major expansion or expendatures, the employment of the Army's largest AFV fleet defines the structures of 11/12 maneurve units, and therefore it's Bdes. The value of number of pers, or holding units becomes a question of if the structure works or we do we need / should we have an IFV squadron / regiment in each Bde?
The question I'd have is given our current force structure can we continue to afford having our entire Reserve of infantry regiments as light infantry? Or should we start having some reroll as mechanized even if the battle taxi they get is a Mack truck?
 

markppcli

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well I think what was being suggested by other would have been essentially a fifth maneuver, if you can call it that, unit. Which woud be a large change in how we do things structurally. Similarly Kirkhill was questioning if we need Crew Commanders (we do) at all, which would result in more bodies available to do other things. So yeah low level structure but structure none the less. If talking about what units we will have, and how they will organize, isn't appropriate for a discussion on Force 2025 what is an appropriate topic?
 

MilEME09

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well I think what was being suggested by other would have been essentially a fifth maneuver, if you can call it that, unit. Which woud be a large change in how we do things structurally. Similarly Kirkhill was questioning if we need Crew Commanders (we do) at all, which would result in more bodies available to do other things. So yeah low level structure but structure none the less. If talking about what units we will have, and how they will organize, isn't appropriate for a discussion on Force 2025 what is an appropriate topic?
Considering F2025 is considering reorganization I'd say it's appropriate
 

markppcli

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The question I'd have is given our current force structure can we continue to afford having our entire Reserve of infantry regiments as light infantry? Or should we start having some reroll as mechanized even if the battle taxi they get is a Mack truck?
Take all 60-70 odd Reserve Armoured and Infantry regiments, mash them together into about a dozen or so Bns of Canadian Mounted Rifles, with sub units perpetuating old regiments, each built around Infantry soldiers with TAPV for mobility crewed by Armoured crew. TAPV isn't idea but it's what we have.

Oh and in Edmonton and Fredricton have two "crew replacement regiments" that are tasked to produce Leopard Crewmen for support to the tank squadrons a la Royal Yeomanry.
 

Brad Sallows

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TAPV isn't idea but it's what we have.

Res F doesn't need first-line equipment. Anything fitting the general idea of a carrier with better mobility than a truck should do. I'd argue the simpler, the better - fewer specialized skills to be maintained (focus on cores) and lower maintenance burden. If the kit is deployable for some ops (eg. peacekeeping), so much the better, although it risks the pool being taken away.
 

Infanteer

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This conversation is going at this backwards. The discussion on crews is a doctrinal matter, while the discussion on structure is related to land force roles and missions. The latter should feed the former - so instead of starting with "how many people do we put in a LAV", the conversation should be on "what strategic roles and missions is the Army expected to conduct." Work from the top down.

Here is a good example of where the discussion should start.

Our Army should have NATO commitment on the continent in defence of NATO allies as part of our mission set. We also need a force to handle COIN missions as well as more traditional peacekeeping and stability operations. And of course our next shooting war will be something unexpected, but it will likely have aspects of all those types of operations.
 

FJAG

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When do troops learn how to use “the big gear” if it is all parked on another continent? How many fewer people get to experience resourced collective training because the kit is held out of country?

You say that you want all this kit in Latvia so our troops can experience combined arms training. There will be a whole lot less of that experience if we have balanced our resources so that Europe is the only place to do the training.
... And the little Adazi training area is not the best place to really stretch mechanized training. We have better at home.
If a battle group with one squadron of tanks and one mech rifle company exhausts all our "big gear" then we have a much larger problem than we think and we should all go home with our tails between our legs.

That said, we could use Europe as our CMTC for whatever sized organization we feel should be there. Units could rotate through to do whatever test exercises we consider useful as a check on training status and to get experience in a multinational environment. Leave a core staff of exercise controllers and equipment maintainers with everyone else being flown there and back by our transport squadrons.

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markppcli

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This conversation is going at this backwards. The discussion on crews is a doctrinal matter, while the discussion on structure is related to land force roles and missions. The latter should feed the former - so instead of starting with "how many people do we put in a LAV", the conversation should be on "what strategic roles and missions is the Army expected to conduct." Work from the top down.

Here is a good example of where the discussion should start.
Do we have the size of our force elements right? Is the company, is the squadron, is the battery design that we have now, is it fit for purpose for some of the new capabilities we’re bringing in, and the new way of operating?
That is directly from Force 2025; and is what we are talking about. Our role, which you neatly summarized, is frankly a known. We are discussing, within the confines set out in Force 2025, what that force should look like. We have no discussed the higher level, because it has been defined and set out already.
 
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