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Australian Army Discussions and Updates

This is a discussion on Australian Army Discussions and Updates within the Army & Security Forces forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Originally Posted by riksavage The Australian military will have to increase its training capacity (facilities & man-power) to deal with ...


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Old December 18th, 2006   #31
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The Australian military will have to increase its training capacity (facilities & man-power) to deal with the influx of young men and women who select to opt for a one year’s commitment. Also, I have a number of searching questions / comments, listed below as follows:

1.How long will the training package be, and will it be restricted to basic infantry skills?

2.Will these individuals be eligible for active service, overseas deployment, or will they be restricted to homeland defense? You could end up attracting personnel away from taking up a regular career, particularly if the ‘one year wonders’ don’t have to serve in difficult and dangerous overseas environments.

3.If after one year you wish to stay on, would you be required to attend additional trade specific training or go back to infantry school to upgrade basic tactics etc.?

4.This smacks of a voluntary national service to me, which traditionally lasted at least two years to ensure the Government got its value for money!
Hopefully the basic, advanced and IET courses are identical to normal ARA applicants.

Some trades (Sigs) etc having longer courses, would probably only be open if they sign on for 4 years.

Most other Corps would be open to them. I fail to see the point of "trying" the Army for a year, unless you go the "whole hog". Army doesn't have to retrain anyone who stays on then either...

Under the Ready Reserve scheme we all did the same basic and IET as "regular" soldiers, despite only doing 1 year full time service. This scheme is only different insofar as there is no "reserve" period ROSO at the end of your year...
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Old December 18th, 2006   #32
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I cant help but wonder if the two year time table of a fully manned and ready mech brigade will co-incide with another partner ship of the willing in Iran/North Korea or some such place. I feel that we are building up for something other than our own region. I know that we need a bigger and stronger army, and im all for it, but the recent desions lead me to believe that Australia has thown its hat in the ring for a future confict off shore.
Well Johnny was talking about sending an armoured brigade for the invasion of Iraq, and was left embarrassed in front of his mate George when told that the Army could only provide an obsolete force. That's why we ended up providing pretty much everything EXCEPT conventional ground forces.

I think you are dead right that this build-up has a purpose, but I think it's more likely that they are trying to build a deployable force based on what happened in 2003, for unspecified future coalition operations, rather than any specific agreements for Iran/North Korea.


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The upgraded M113's are up to 18 tons WITHOUT the "additional applique" armour kits they are getting. They are deficient in firepower compared to Bradley/Warrior etc but roughly equivalent in most other ways.
A standard Bradley/Warrior, perhaps, but with their own armour kits these get up decently over 30 tons each, don't they? I don't think the AS3/4s can really be said to compare - much as I am a fan of them.

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If we were to prepare a force for Korea, it would comprise at least 2 mech inf battalions, a medium artillery regiment, a tank regiment, a cavalry regiment, a combat engineer regiment, combat support regiment, armed recon helicopter sqn, air defence battery, special forces task force and combined RAN/RAAF elements.

It would take some rapid acquisitions and a fair amount of training, to accomplish, most notably the SPG's and a considerable amount of combat engineering equipment, but it COULD be achieved in less than 2 years.
That would be the entire of 1 Bde. I think you could add TUAVs and transport helos to that. We'd certainly have to be careful if we deployed all that because it would strip the country of all our best formations, leaving only a light infantry brigade and a motorised infantry brigade.

The other option would be a sort of combined arms battlegroup, comprised of a few of the new 'battlegroup' units but smaller than an entire brigade.

Last edited by Simon9; December 18th, 2006 at 11:20 PM.
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Old December 19th, 2006   #33
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Hopefully the basic, advanced and IET courses are identical to normal ARA applicants.

Some trades (Sigs) etc having longer courses, would probably only be open if they sign on for 4 years.

Most other Corps would be open to them. I fail to see the point of "trying" the Army for a year, unless you go the "whole hog". Army doesn't have to retrain anyone who stays on then either...
You have to think about the thought processes of these recruits though, and the difficulty in "getting them" any other way.

It will most likely have a high success rate for a number of reasons, primarily the fact that at that age you quickly get into a routine and use to having some money, no doubt they'll get great results at them signing up for longer service. Reminds me of when I finished uni and got my first "real" (read: full-time) job, a year later I had considered going back to uni a bit but there was no way in the world I could go without the income of my fill-time job at that stage.

If getting good intial sign-up means a relatively light initial training, then IMO it's worth the cost of re-training.
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Old December 19th, 2006   #34
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I dont like the idea of 1 yr contracts at all.Waste of time and money. As a section commander, haveing a section of changeing faces every six months, allowing for 6 months of rec/iet inf trg,means the training standards at the Bn level can only drop. Once a new member has done his IET training, he is still very green, and six more months in the Bn will bring him up to BASIC standard only. Then if he wishes to leave/quit, cause, he has saved enough dough for his holiday/education etc or its harder than he thought/dosnt like it any more, means that the section will be re-enforced with shiney new digs from the school of fools to bring up to basic standard again! Should be at least 3 years reserve obligation at the very least.
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Old December 19th, 2006   #35
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Should be at least 3 years reserve obligation at the very least.
I am pessimistic that a high proportion of the one year service recruits will re-enlist, in which case this scheme will do little to bolster the numbers of deployable soldiers. From my observation of a nephew who went through the old ready reserve scheme I know that he benefited financially from his year of training/fulltime service and the army at least had a useful return during his subsequent service in the ready reserve. I would like to see a requirement of 12 months further fulltime service (which would effectively make this a voluntary equivalent of the last national service scheme) or alternatively at least 3 years in a ready reserve type unit. This would at least provide some reasonably competent deployable soldiers.
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Old December 19th, 2006   #36
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I don't think this one-year wonder scheme will do much good apart from catching a few soldiers in the net and keep them. They will drain more money from areas that need it and get minimal return for training them. It will look good on the books to have them in uniform but thatís about it.
Other problems will be the lack of unit cohesion and discipline issues. 4-year soldiers vs. the one-year soldiers will prove problematic. It happen when Readies reenlisted into the ARA. They didnít blend in well and problems did occur. It happened with the short infantry IET coarse guys as well.
Also these guys are not going to be proficient in their trades before the one year is up and this to will coarse problems for field commanders and this will force the Battalions etc. to reinvent themselves yet again. Whatís to say if a battalion deploys and some of the soldiers are 3mths out from their time? Deploy them or not?
Other problems would be in a said one year soldier was to go the a section they will probably put say in the no. 3 rifle position and left there while other soldier get on courses, they will not and morale for them will be an issue.
Overall I think this idea should be binned itís like doing the RRes scheme again just with less time and a different name.
Sign on for 4 year or not at all. Put more money towards retention and training troops to fight and not just try out!
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Old December 19th, 2006   #37
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well said Mick,couldnt agree more. I really hope they can the idea, and try to make the job more attractive in other ways. I really enjoyed my time,we didnt have the budget,deployments or toys the guys have now. I also think we trained at section level a great deal more, and were very close, and very effective as a team. My section remained largely unchanged for 3 years at one stage,and i can assure you ,we were very well drilled. With digs coming and going on a yearly basis, those standards will never be acheived,cant be done in 6months period. remember,after training,the best a Bn can hope for is 6 months from these digs....terrible waste of time,effort and money.
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Old December 21st, 2006   #38
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These short term fix it schemes are so stupid.
Why doesn't the ADF in general buy of the shelf and stop these stupid short stuff ups and think more about the what is needed now and then for the future.
These jokers in charge need shooting sometimes, who in the hell is running this rock show??


Old Faithful, your ex 3RAR right?...whats your feelings towards 3RAR going back to Lt Inf again?
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Old December 21st, 2006   #39
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Mick73...3RAR is a para Bn at present, so really they are light Inf, the lightest! the only difference is the deployment method, and as pointed out, 3 has never been operationly deployed by parachute. However!, that dosnt mean that that method of deployment will NEVER be needed. 4RAR will maintain the role, but I think it would be stretched if anything other than point of entry was required.What if the majority of 4RAR were deplyed in another AO and they were acting as cutoff for a force that would be deployed quickly via an as yet unsecured area. If we had a para Bn, they could quickly secure a POE for a larger force,then join it. I can see a need for a para Bn or another CDO Bn, either way, the transition to light INF will be easy and quick. 3Bde in townsville will be a more balanced unit now, and the local buisness up there will be greatful and the civie girls nervous!
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Old December 21st, 2006   #40
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It seems to me the one year try initiative is more political the Army. (Can't do it with most Naval/Air Force trades). Even with the basic infantry skills there is far more to a rifleman then just running around the bush and markmansmanship.

Just curious, would Australia purchase BMP-3 if it came to emergency buy? It seems to be the only IFV in the price/feature range currently on the market which is not in the light tank weight range.
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Old December 21st, 2006   #41
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Mick73...3RAR is a para Bn at present, so really they are light Inf, the lightest! the only difference is the deployment method, and as pointed out, 3 has never been operationly deployed by parachute. However!, that dosnt mean that that method of deployment will NEVER be needed. 4RAR will maintain the role, but I think it would be stretched if anything other than point of entry was required.What if the majority of 4RAR were deplyed in another AO and they were acting as cutoff for a force that would be deployed quickly via an as yet unsecured area. If we had a para Bn, they could quickly secure a POE for a larger force,then join it. I can see a need for a para Bn or another CDO Bn, either way, the transition to light INF will be easy and quick. 3Bde in townsville will be a more balanced unit now, and the local buisness up there will be greatful and the civie girls nervous!
I would like them to keep one Para Coy and rotate it like the RDF rotated the online Bn. Thus keeping a the Para capability in case we needed it again. With 1RAR getting a lot of the air time from 5 Avvn and 2RAR playing with the boats most of the time (HMAS Tobruk), I just think transport might be a little spread thin for all three Bn's. Unless they cut D Coy from 1 and 2. That might help the new section manning if it comes into effect.
On the Cdo Bn maybe thats where 8/9 RAR might do in the future if another Cdo Bn was needed or use 3RAR as they are Para ATM.
Interesting times ahead for the Regt.
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Old December 21st, 2006   #42
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It seems to me the one year try initiative is more political the Army. (Can't do it with most Naval/Air Force trades). Even with the basic infantry skills there is far more to a rifleman then just running around the bush and markmansmanship.

Just curious, would Australia purchase BMP-3 if it came to emergency buy? It seems to be the only IFV in the price/feature range currently on the market which is not in the light tank weight range.
I cannot EVER imagine the Australian Army acquiring a Russian made piece of equipment, let alone an armoured vehicle. If we needed to purchase an IFV for IMMEDIATE service, I'd imagine it would be Bradley or Warrior, depending on WHO could get us the vehicles and support us best, in terms of placement on courses for immediate type conversion, supply of materiel to support the capability etc.

I find it difficult to imagine the scenario where we'd NEED an IFV so immediately. If the threat level was too great for existing armoured vehicles OS, we'd probably not deploy at all, or at least only "specwarops" elements.

IF it was a DOA scenario that happened quickly (ie: literally overnight) there are so many flaws (hollowness) in our forces, that the lack of a proper IFV would not be the most serious problem we faced. The US would be able to assist us with VERY substantial air and maritime combat power in such an event anyway and would we then NEED an IFV or even a ground force at all?

WRT to the "Gap year" student. The old Ready Reserve scheme, maligned as it was by the ARA actually achieved some pretty high standards of soldiers, particularly the combat corps. The Ready Reserve troops completed the FULL basic (13 weeks) and IET courses that the ARA did and then spent anywhere from 6 - 8 months within their respective unit. The resources allocation was such that at the conclusion of their 12 month full time service, each soldier had reached (or was supposed to) the Private (P) rating, which normally required 12 months in a battalion after basic and IET, IIRC.

Most ARA battalions these days require a soldier to spend 12 months within the unit before being granted this. There WERE some jack people in the Readies I admit it, but the problem I think was the promise of the financial support for studies at the conclusion of your full time service, rather than the training program the soldiers undertook. The extremely generous benefits for the part time Ready Reservists, attracted, I think, many of the "wrong" sort who saw it as a financial opportunity to set themselves up for the future, rather than an opportunity to see what Army had to offer and get the most out of IT.

Without the education benefits AFTER the Gap year, just the normal income from reserve/full time service, I think this scheme could work pretty well, particularly to boost the current reserve.

I can see MANY "Gap Soldiers" continuing into the reserves as a way of helping finance their way through Uni etc. Some of the bonuses for meeting their training commitments would be VERY welcome by a lot of students I reckon.

Airforce STILL runs a similar scheme to the Ready Reserve system, however it is only 9 months in duration, at which point you transfer to "part-time" or otherwise elect to remain full-time for 4 years or so. ADGIES can do this no problems, and I'm sure there are a few other trades in AirForce that can do it too.

Navy would have a problem with this program I can see, but they may be able to do something. IIRC, there "basic" only goes for around 10 weeks or so and there might be trade or 2 that has an IET (or whatever it's called by the RAN) that operates for the same length of time.

Whatever scheme is in place. It is imperative that the "recruits" be trained the same as regular soldiers and intergrated into the battalions. Yes, it may have a detrimental effect on morale and capability having the regular turnover that is bound to happen. But the best part of ADF service, is the mateship and that only happens when the Digs are working together and playing together for a reasonably extended period.

By the end of the 12 months the "Gap" recruits would just be starting to feel somewhat confident about their skills and ability and THIS more than anything else would seem to indicate that a lot might be willing to stay on, even if ONLY in the reserves.

Ostracizing them and leaving them feel left out of the actual experience is going to embitter many (it would me) and if I knew I have to go to basic or IET AGAIN, it'd certainly give ME second thoughts about staying on...
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Old December 21st, 2006   #43
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I would like them to keep one Para Coy and rotate it like the RDF rotated the online Bn. Thus keeping a the Para capability in case we needed it again. With 1RAR getting a lot of the air time from 5 Avvn and 2RAR playing with the boats most of the time (HMAS Tobruk), I just think transport might be a little spread thin for all three Bn's. Unless they cut D Coy from 1 and 2. That might help the new section manning if it comes into effect.
On the Cdo Bn maybe thats where 8/9 RAR might do in the future if another Cdo Bn was needed or use 3RAR as they are Para ATM.
Interesting times ahead for the Regt.
All RAINF battalions are supposed to be moving towards the new 3x rifle company structure sooner, rather than later. With the additional capacity of the MRH-90 and LHD's and possibly more Chinooks, I'd say the additional capacity will rise to match the additional Company's...
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Old December 21st, 2006   #44
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I cannot EVER imagine the Australian Army acquiring a Russian made piece of equipment, let alone an armoured vehicle. If we needed to purchase an IFV for IMMEDIATE service, I'd imagine it would be Bradley or Warrior, depending on WHO could get us the vehicles and support us best, in terms of placement on courses for immediate type conversion, supply of materiel to support the capability etc.

I find it difficult to imagine the scenario where we'd NEED an IFV so immediately. If the threat level was too great for existing armoured vehicles OS, we'd probably not deploy at all, or at least only "specwarops" elements.

IF it was a DOA scenario that happened quickly (ie: literally overnight) there are so many flaws (hollowness) in our forces, that the lack of a proper IFV would not be the most serious problem we faced. The US would be able to assist us with VERY substantial air and maritime combat power in such an event anyway and would we then NEED an IFV or even a ground force at all?

WRT to the "Gap year" student. The old Ready Reserve scheme, maligned as it was by the ARA actually achieved some pretty high standards of soldiers, particularly the combat corps. The Ready Reserve troops completed the FULL basic (13 weeks) and IET courses that the ARA did and then spent anywhere from 6 - 8 months within their respective unit. The resources allocation was such that at the conclusion of their 12 month full time service, each soldier had reached (or was supposed to) the Private (P) rating, which normally required 12 months in a battalion after basic and IET, IIRC.

Most ARA battalions these days require a soldier to spend 12 months within the unit before being granted this. There WERE some jack people in the Readies I admit it, but the problem I think was the promise of the financial support for studies at the conclusion of your full time service, rather than the training program the soldiers undertook. The extremely generous benefits for the part time Ready Reservists, attracted, I think, many of the "wrong" sort who saw it as a financial opportunity to set themselves up for the future, rather than an opportunity to see what Army had to offer and get the most out of IT.

Without the education benefits AFTER the Gap year, just the normal income from reserve/full time service, I think this scheme could work pretty well, particularly to boost the current reserve.

I can see MANY "Gap Soldiers" continuing into the reserves as a way of helping finance their way through Uni etc. Some of the bonuses for meeting their training commitments would be VERY welcome by a lot of students I reckon.

Airforce STILL runs a similar scheme to the Ready Reserve system, however it is only 9 months in duration, at which point you transfer to "part-time" or otherwise elect to remain full-time for 4 years or so. ADGIES can do this no problems, and I'm sure there are a few other trades in AirForce that can do it too.

Navy would have a problem with this program I can see, but they may be able to do something. IIRC, there "basic" only goes for around 10 weeks or so and there might be trade or 2 that has an IET (or whatever it's called by the RAN) that operates for the same length of time.

Whatever scheme is in place. It is imperative that the "recruits" be trained the same as regular soldiers and intergrated into the battalions. Yes, it may have a detrimental effect on morale and capability having the regular turnover that is bound to happen. But the best part of ADF service, is the mateship and that only happens when the Digs are working together and playing together for a reasonably extended period.

By the end of the 12 months the "Gap" recruits would just be starting to feel somewhat confident about their skills and ability and THIS more than anything else would seem to indicate that a lot might be willing to stay on, even if ONLY in the reserves.

Ostracizing them and leaving them feel left out of the actual experience is going to embitter many (it would me) and if I knew I have to go to basic or IET AGAIN, it'd certainly give ME second thoughts about staying on...
Dont agree, a compromise of 2years would be getting some where, but a 12mth contract is a WOFTAM!
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Old December 21st, 2006   #45
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I cannot EVER imagine the Australian Army acquiring a Russian made piece of equipment, let alone an armoured vehicle. If we needed to purchase an IFV for IMMEDIATE service, I'd imagine it would be Bradley or Warrior, depending on WHO could get us the vehicles and support us best, in terms of placement on courses for immediate type conversion, supply of materiel to support the capability etc.

I find it difficult to imagine the scenario where we'd NEED an IFV so immediately. If the threat level was too great for existing armoured vehicles OS, we'd probably not deploy at all, or at least only "specwarops" elements.

IF it was a DOA scenario that happened quickly (ie: literally overnight) there are so many flaws (hollowness) in our forces, that the lack of a proper IFV would not be the most serious problem we faced. The US would be able to assist us with VERY substantial air and maritime combat power in such an event anyway and would we then NEED an IFV or even a ground force at all?

WRT to the "Gap year" student. The old Ready Reserve scheme, maligned as it was by the ARA actually achieved some pretty high standards of soldiers, particularly the combat corps. The Ready Reserve troops completed the FULL basic (13 weeks) and IET courses that the ARA did and then spent anywhere from 6 - 8 months within their respective unit. The resources allocation was such that at the conclusion of their 12 month full time service, each soldier had reached (or was supposed to) the Private (P) rating, which normally required 12 months in a battalion after basic and IET, IIRC.

Most ARA battalions these days require a soldier to spend 12 months within the unit before being granted this. There WERE some jack people in the Readies I admit it, but the problem I think was the promise of the financial support for studies at the conclusion of your full time service, rather than the training program the soldiers undertook. The extremely generous benefits for the part time Ready Reservists, attracted, I think, many of the "wrong" sort who saw it as a financial opportunity to set themselves up for the future, rather than an opportunity to see what Army had to offer and get the most out of IT.

Without the education benefits AFTER the Gap year, just the normal income from reserve/full time service, I think this scheme could work pretty well, particularly to boost the current reserve.

I can see MANY "Gap Soldiers" continuing into the reserves as a way of helping finance their way through Uni etc. Some of the bonuses for meeting their training commitments would be VERY welcome by a lot of students I reckon.

Airforce STILL runs a similar scheme to the Ready Reserve system, however it is only 9 months in duration, at which point you transfer to "part-time" or otherwise elect to remain full-time for 4 years or so. ADGIES can do this no problems, and I'm sure there are a few other trades in AirForce that can do it too.

Navy would have a problem with this program I can see, but they may be able to do something. IIRC, there "basic" only goes for around 10 weeks or so and there might be trade or 2 that has an IET (or whatever it's called by the RAN) that operates for the same length of time.

Whatever scheme is in place. It is imperative that the "recruits" be trained the same as regular soldiers and intergrated into the battalions. Yes, it may have a detrimental effect on morale and capability having the regular turnover that is bound to happen. But the best part of ADF service, is the mateship and that only happens when the Digs are working together and playing together for a reasonably extended period.

By the end of the 12 months the "Gap" recruits would just be starting to feel somewhat confident about their skills and ability and THIS more than anything else would seem to indicate that a lot might be willing to stay on, even if ONLY in the reserves.

Ostracizing them and leaving them feel left out of the actual experience is going to embitter many (it would me) and if I knew I have to go to basic or IET AGAIN, it'd certainly give ME second thoughts about staying on...
Don't really understand Dig', but if you are already calling them "Gap Soldiers" then the project should be canned.

A soldier is a soldier, whether he is a reservist or regular, he/she is still a soldier. It saddens me to think there are such distinctions made within the Australian Army. And quite frankly, If I were the man in charge, I would kick anyone's butt from here to timbuktu if I found them making such distinctions between fighting men and women. Its a joke and doesn't reflect well upon the Australian Army.

cheers

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