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Stop the Army’s Dangerous Game

Alberta Bound

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T-Lav Stab B POMLT, PRTC from CNS hit by an IED while doing a roadsweep Dand District road to Nokonay, summer 2009.
The turret detached from the hull and the gunner road it up and to it`s landing. Gunner / Commander seriously injured and evacuated. I beleive the air sentry also took some injuries but didn`t leave mission and the driver came out okay.
I won`t go into the explanation the major gave as to the belly armour design that made the IED hit less serious. The T-Lav was a great vehicle and if I beleive the explanation. One of the safest in mission.


REMOVED PICTURE OVER OPSEC CONCERNS
Bruce
 

Edward Campbell

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Going back to the first post ~ the article ~ one point the author makes is that the USA already has light forces, he specifies the USMC, but, I suppose, he might have added the airborne formations, too.

The point I took away is that IF one has light forces then one should ensure they are good for the roles envisioned and one should then do the same for the heavy forces: in other words, have a balanced force that is properly staffed, trained and equipped.

My question to myself is: how does Canada fare in that regard?
 

MilEME09

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E.R. Campbell said:
My question to myself is: how does Canada fare in that regard?

I would argue we are a light force, very little of our forces I would cal heavy, Tanks yes, mechanized infantry maybe but a LAV isnt a heavy IFV, its a light vehicle designed for speed and mobility, not protection and firepower. We have massive gaps in our capabilities, and we could not deploy a self contained and protected battle group due to those capability gaps (like GBAD). So are we a balanced force? no, properly staffed? no I would say especially in the HQ level we are over staffed. Trained? I'll give that one to the CF though they seem to want to throw everything about A-stan out the window and go back to cold war force on force. Equipped? god no.
 

Ostrozac

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MilEME09 said:
I would argue we are a light force, very little of our forces I would cal heavy, Tanks yes, mechanized infantry maybe but a LAV isnt a heavy IFV, its a light vehicle designed for speed and mobility, not protection and firepower. We have massive gaps in our capabilities, and we could not deploy a self contained and protected battle group due to those capability gaps (like GBAD). So are we a balanced force? no, properly staffed? no I would say especially in the HQ level we are over staffed. Trained? I'll give that one to the CF though they seem to want to throw everything about A-stan out the window and go back to cold war force on force. Equipped? god no.

Agreed on that. If we are a light force where are the modern manpack radios -- if we are a medium force then where are our anti-tank missiles -- and if we are a heavy force, then why is our fantastic new artillery being towed behind unarmoured trucks?

I really don't understand how a Canadian battalion is expected to fight any kind of peer force with our current mix of equipment. <<Shrug>> AOC's coming up, maybe they'll be able to explain to me why anti-tank weapons aren't required anymore.
 

Kirkhill

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tomahawk6 said:
Back to a peacekeeping is it ? :camo:

I've searched high and low but I just can't seem to find the "bun toss" smiley.....
 

Humphrey Bogart

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Ostrozac said:
Agreed on that. If we are a light force where are the modern manpack radios -- if we are a medium force then where are our anti-tank missiles -- and if we are a heavy force, then why is our fantastic new artillery being towed behind unarmoured trucks?

I really don't understand how a Canadian battalion is expected to fight any kind of peer force with our current mix of equipment. <<Shrug>> AOC's coming up, maybe they'll be able to explain to me why anti-tank weapons aren't required anymore.

I've said it before, the Canadian Army of today is much like the British Army of the 1890s, Able to kill people armed with sticks and sharpened bits of fruit with some difficulty but not much else.
 

Old Sweat

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Don't ever say theoretical studies can anticipate and come up with an answer for every situation, or even very many of them. In June 1944 the 3rd Canadian Division defeated the counter-stroke by 1 SS Panzer Corps designed to eliminate the Normandy landing. How would we pre-determine the results today? If one was doing an estimate or a war game, depending upon how one decided upon the input data, all sorts of results could have been predicted.
 

Edward Campbell

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tomahawk6 said:
Back to a peacekeeping is it ? :camo:


Unfortunately we have a government that takes the risk of putting our forces face-to-face with a potential "peer" enemy, but only staffs and equips our forces to peacekeeping levels.
 

tomahawk6

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The CF did a great job in Afghanistan.IMO you punched above your weight.Your commitment to the mission was sorely tested by the loss of some of your best and brightest.It may be that this stype of mission may be more common than not going ahead.The French have shown that in places like Africa wheeled vehicles are the best combat vehicle.Wheeled vehicles also seemed to do well in parts of Afghanistan.
 

Edward Campbell

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You'll get no argument from me on any of these points:

tomahawk6 said:
The CF did a great job in Afghanistan.IMO you punched above your weight.   commitment to the mission was sorely tested by the loss of some of your best and brightest. It may be that this stype of mission may be more common than not going ahead. The French have shown that in places like Africa wheeled vehicles are the best combat vehicle. Wheeled vehicles also seemed to do well in parts of Afghanistan.

I don't think the Russians want to risk a war against NATO ... but one could happen and the CF is not, in my opinion, ready to face Russians.

I am certain that China does not want a war with the US led West, but accidents can happen and I am positive the we (not just the CF) are not prepatred to face China.

The question is: does it make any strategic (political, military and economic calculation) sense to equip the CF for anything much worse than a fight against popular forces in some dirty, fly blown, third world country? My sense is that folks in Ottawa (currently) say, "No!"
 

daftandbarmy

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RoyalDrew said:
I've said it before, the Canadian Army of today is much like the British Army of the 1890s, Able to kill people armed with sticks and sharpened bits of fruit with some difficulty but not much else.

I saw what you did there. ;)

Not bad for a young 'un https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piWCBOsJr-w
 

Ostrozac

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There's nothing fundamentally wrong with having a COIN army. If we accept the strategic leap of faith that there will be no peer-on-peer fights for the next century, or that we can avoid such fights, then we can completely optimize our force for COIN. And we can then tell our allies that we have a bit of a niche army -- and if Putin or Kim get feisty, then we will not be sending a mechanized brigade group -- but if you want world-class SOF, excellent training teams, or are just planning a ten-year quagmire somewhere, then we're totally on board.

But telling ourselves that we are peer-on-peer ready is intellectual dishonesty, and even worse, if we are spending valuable training time on the type of wars that we aren't equipped to fight, and probably don't have the strategic direction to prepare for, then we are wasting all that money and time.
 

MilEME09

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Ostrozac said:
There's nothing fundamentally wrong with having a COIN army. If we accept the strategic leap of faith that there will be no peer-on-peer fights for the next century, or that we can avoid such fights, then we can completely optimize our force for COIN. And we can then tell our allies that we have a bit of a niche army -- and if Putin or Kim get feisty, then we will not be sending a mechanized brigade group -- but if you want world-class SOF, excellent training teams, or are just planning a ten-year quagmire somewhere, then we're totally on board.

But telling ourselves that we are peer-on-peer ready is intellectual dishonesty, and even worse, if we are spending valuable training time on the type of wars that we aren't equipped to fight, and probably don't have the strategic direction to prepare for, then we are wasting all that money and time.

Thus is where we are at, preparing for a conventional war without the ability to fight it
 

daftandbarmy

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Ostrozac said:
There's nothing fundamentally wrong with having a COIN army. If we accept the strategic leap of faith that there will be no peer-on-peer fights for the next century, or that we can avoid such fights, then we can completely optimize our force for COIN. And we can then tell our allies that we have a bit of a niche army -- and if Putin or Kim get feisty, then we will not be sending a mechanized brigade group -- but if you want world-class SOF, excellent training teams, or are just planning a ten-year quagmire somewhere, then we're totally on board.

But telling ourselves that we are peer-on-peer ready is intellectual dishonesty, and even worse, if we are spending valuable training time on the type of wars that we aren't equipped to fight, and probably don't have the strategic direction to prepare for, then we are wasting all that money and time.

“Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation.”

― Robert H. Schuller
 

Fishbone Jones

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Technoviking said:
The T Lav with the more powerful engine, etc than the vintage M113 means that it ought to keep up to the Leo 2 in tough terrain.  This is only a swag on my part, given my limited experience in the T-LAV working with the Leo 2.
The Garvin lives!

The  113 type.  ;D
 

The Bread Guy

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Ostrozac said:
.... if you want world-class SOF, excellent training teams, or are just planning a ten-year quagmire somewhere, then we're totally on board ....
I don't know, even if we reworked the CF as you suggest, that ANY government of ANY stripe would say out loud, "yeah, we're there for 10 years - count on it!"  The best any government can say is (honestly), "as long as we're in power, and as long as it's worthwhile (politically), we're in".
 

Underway

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I think the definition of light, middle, and heavy is different for everyone and every army.  Many publications refer to US Stryker brigades as middle weight formations while the article that started the thread infers that they are light.

It appears that the Canadian experience is different in the definition as well.  You could argue that the grouping of 4 Leo's, 4 LAV 6.0, attached Engineering (in whatever they are driving today), FOO/FAC LAV, is a heavy formation.  We have the capability to do this and train with it.  Air mobile assets from a Chinook are obviously light.  Isn't it really about the size and the mix of what we are actually deploying?

Also can someone define for all of us here what a light, a medium and a heavy formation are.  What are the key components (Coles notes) in each.  I think that we might find that each of our definitions differ on certain points, but at least then we could have a baseline from which to debate.
 
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