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Australian Defence White Paper 2009 discussion

This is a discussion on Australian Defence White Paper 2009 discussion within the Geo-strategic Issues forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; The release of Australian Defence White Paper for 2009 has been already been suggested by some media commentators as the ...


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Old May 1st, 2009   #1
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Australian Defence White Paper 2009 discussion

The release of Australian Defence White Paper for 2009 has been already been suggested by some media commentators as the most important since the Second World War, and one that makes a distinct change to Australian defence and security view. Although many aspects of it are carried over from the previous Liberal Government's planning and budgeted allocations, some are new choices.
Are these the right choices, and is the Labour Government under Rudd making realistic decisions about Australian defence and security?
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #2
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I think the government has got this one right. It is a white paper that shows we will secure our trade lanes by sea and air. I think the givernment also hit the nail on the head when it says we must not rely on our allies as much.

Sure we help our allies as much as we can but if you look in general at how insecure the world is becoming , we must start to understand that our allies may not always be able to help as much as we think they can or help out in the required timeframe. So we must be able to defend ourselves and our interests in the region until help can arrive.

My favourite reported idea about the white paper is the cyber security. I think most average australians would not relise the importance of this aspect in defence. I admit I never really thought much about it, this white paper shows the government is doing their job in looking at future issues.

With the defence build up will come jobs and technology advancements in Australia, So we should all get behind it.

The alternative of not growing our defence is not an option. Because sooner or later stealing our resources or attacking us or our neighbours through various means ie.cyber attacks and maybe future regional conflicts, would look pretty good if we kept defence at its current level.

This is just building a big deterrant to keep Australia safe and the region stable. The big technology jump will also help keep our soldiers safe if properly managed.

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"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." (Edmund Burke)
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #3
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It is a white paper that shows we will secure our trade lanes by sea and air.
It may be useful to add a link to a map showing the sea lanes (maritime trade routes) that are used by commercial traffic to and from Australia.
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vo...6_1866_F2.jpeg

There were 29,693 commercial vessel calls in Australia in 2007/08.Ports Australia - the peak representative body for Australian ports and marine authorities.
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #4
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http://www.defence.gov.au/whitepaper...paper_2009.pdf

146 pages, very interesting.

Very broad and vague too. Overall intentions stated, but not model specific, eg, replacing caribou and "Army vehicles".

Persisting with the old M113, older than me, still "around" 100 JSFs.

Mention of development of arms but no facts, eg new rifles, missiles etc.

Says we have to suck up to China big time in future.

One scary fact re logistical bases

"Therefore, the Government has decided to rationalise the Defence storage and distribution network. Outdated facilities will be replaced and Defence's 24 wholesale sites will be consolidated into seven, supported by seven specialist logistics units. The rationalisation will optimise the storage and distribution functions of Defence to provide effective operational support sustainably and efficiently. Furthermore, Defence will pursue the most cost-effective procurement option, which could potentially involve a public-private partnership arrangement. To drive better value into its contracts, Defence will also re-tender its base storage, distribution and maintenance function."

Bye Bye jobs, hello black market sales, welcome to Ebay!

Take a coupla days to work out exactly what can me named as new, whats proposed, whats likely, and whats left out. In other words, its a see how we go for cash strategy!
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #5
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http://www.defence.gov.au/whitepaper...paper_2009.pdf

146 pages, very interesting.

Very broad and vague too. Overall intentions stated, but not model specific, eg, replacing caribou and "Army vehicles".

Persisting with the old M113, older than me, still "around" 100 JSFs.

Mention of development of arms but no facts, eg new rifles, missiles etc.

Says we have to suck up to China big time in future.

One scary fact re logistical bases

"Therefore, the Government has decided to rationalise the Defence storage and distribution network. Outdated facilities will be replaced and Defence's 24 wholesale sites will be consolidated into seven, supported by seven specialist logistics units. The rationalisation will optimise the storage and distribution functions of Defence to provide effective operational support sustainably and efficiently. Furthermore, Defence will pursue the most cost-effective procurement option, which could potentially involve a public-private partnership arrangement. To drive better value into its contracts, Defence will also re-tender its base storage, distribution and maintenance function."

Bye Bye jobs, hello black market sales, welcome to Ebay!

Take a coupla days to work out exactly what can me named as new, whats proposed, whats likely, and whats left out. In other words, its a see how we go for cash strategy!
Much of this white paper, in terms of procurement, is old news budgeted by the Howard Government, and known as expected needs to fill gaps that would have severely stressed certain ADF operations without capability replacements.

I think the logistics proposal is sensible, but ambitious. Still, I never understood the rationale for Navy's depots at Point William and Erina.

Quite correct though, will take a bit of time to digest.

I think the Minister is right in that the rest of the detail will follow on Budget night. It seems to me that the Government is counting on the Recession being less rather than more prolonged, possibly showing signs of recovery by mid to late 2010, in other words a mini-Recession. In this case the impact of Recession on the Defence budget will be minimal over a 20 year projection, and therefore 3% will still be sustainable.

Last edited by FutureTank; May 2nd, 2009 at 06:48 AM. Reason: spl
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #6
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Same old political spin! Take what been done from the old government and add a few things for the new. Happens every time there is a change of government and will happen again when it changes in the next 10 years or so. This old way of thinking will be the death of the so called “self reliance” and the cycle will continue over and over again. The opposition has now started it retort by saying “How can we afford this?” Well most of what is the the paper is from them! What is needed is a complete overhaul of the way we think. Growth at 20% in the industry I work in is achievable each year with the right kind process and strategy and we have continue this through this little recession but with defence it seems buying a new set of boots to a helicopter costs us just as much in time and or money. Buy off the self and stop trying to modify or change things on a piece of equipment that has been designed by much smarter people then us. The Tiger ARH is a perfect example of this and so far is has proven useless unless you think wowing crowds at air shows as a good use of military resources.
Wow, 12 new submarines and SLCM, I hope we buy them together and someone smart goes with them before they hand over the cash. We might find we buy new subs that can’t carry them and then spend millions of dollar and ten years trying to put them together just in time for the next white paper!
We must change the culture of defence otherwise history just repeats itself!
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #7
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Same old political spin! Take what been done from the old government and add a few things for the new. Happens every time there is a change of government and will happen again when it changes in the next 10 years or so. This old way of thinking will be the death of the so called “self reliance” and the cycle will continue over and over again. The opposition has now started it retort by saying “How can we afford this?” Well most of what is the the paper is from them! What is needed is a complete overhaul of the way we think. Growth at 20% in the industry I work in is achievable each year with the right kind process and strategy and we have continue this through this little recession but with defence it seems buying a new set of boots to a helicopter costs us just as much in time and or money. Buy off the self and stop trying to modify or change things on a piece of equipment that has been designed by much smarter people then us. The Tiger ARH is a perfect example of this and so far is has proven useless unless you think wowing crowds at air shows as a good use of military resources.
Wow, 12 new submarines and SLCM, I hope we buy them together and someone smart goes with them before they hand over the cash. We might find we buy new subs that can’t carry them and then spend millions of dollar and ten years trying to put them together just in time for the next white paper!
We must change the culture of defence otherwise history just repeats itself!
Yes, I just found out that the Tigers after three years still can't fire unguided rockets.

Unfortunately the economics of it is that to buy things Australia needs to sell things, and the things to sell to get larger profit are often manufactured products, and not ore or wheat or sheep.

The alternative is that we build as much as we can in Australia.

It seems to me the submarines will be built in Australia, as will be the corvettes and probably the AWDs. We can't build the F-35s, but probably can build/assemble the P-8s though this is probably unlikely.

We should be able to build the new Army AFVs if we really try a national effort by distributing the work rather than trying to shove it all into one facility. There is no reason that AFV can be the basis of a new SP artillery platform which is also on the books, by creating a modular family of AFVs.
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #8
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The Tiger ARH is a perfect example of this and so far is has proven useless unless you think wowing crowds at air shows as a good use of military resources.
The Tiger wasn't really off-the-shelf, since it hadn't entered active service with anyone at the time it was bought.

I believe the idea is to focus on buying things that are already in service and operating with the capabilities desired.
IE: The exact item you are buying is being used by someone now, so you can just buy one and use it. (The C-17 would be a good example of that.)

In that situation, the only delay would be training Australian crews, and possibly setting up some support services.

Obviously, this has the fastest turn-around and the lowest risk. Cost would usually be lower, as well.

On the downside, the hardware may not be cutting edge- you'll usually be getting equipment that has been in service for a while. There's also virtually no chance for local involvement. And, of course, you have to buy what is on offer- no customisation.
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Old May 2nd, 2009   #9
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The Tiger wasn't really off-the-shelf, since it hadn't entered active service with anyone at the time it was bought.

I believe the idea is to focus on buying things that are already in service and operating with the capabilities desired.
IE: The exact item you are buying is being used by someone now, so you can just buy one and use it. (The C-17 would be a good example of that.)

In that situation, the only delay would be training Australian crews, and possibly setting up some support services.

Obviously, this has the fastest turn-around and the lowest risk. Cost would usually be lower, as well.

On the downside, the hardware may not be cutting edge- you'll usually be getting equipment that has been in service for a while. There's also virtually no chance for local involvement. And, of course, you have to buy what is on offer- no customisation.
Yes, my fault. I differ with the Amy on the meaning of "enter service". To me service of a combat aircraft means "combat service", not five years of taking media pictures and trying to figure out how to fire unguided rockets from it. If the Army meant that, it should not have stated intended year of acceptance for service as 2004, but said this was the intend year to start training pilots. We teach children about telling the truth and keeping promises, don't we?

I have not read the Senate report on the Tiger, but, I have no idea how a design is built as a combat helicopter that can't fire all commonly used unguided munitions on combat helicopters, and offer it for sale, and, how the buyer selects the design having never asked the question "can it fire the unguided rockets we use?". This is particularly relevant when one reads this
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The 68mm rocket system has been selected for the Eurocopter Tiger helicopter ordered by France and Germany. Included in the system are both 12- and 22-tube pods, a complete range of warheads, double-base propellant rocket
Jane's Missiles and Rockets from 1998! Last time I looked at the ARH, I created a file, and looking at that 2004 file there is a specified load for all stations carrying unguided 68mm SNEB rockets. Yesterday though I was just about told I have no clue when I suggested that use of unguided 2.75" rockets is a good idea in Afghanistan, and informed that the 2.75" rockets are not used. Now I look at the Air 87 project site and it says
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70mm FZ Rockets will be utilised.
, with these rocket pods being on the inner stations of the shown helicopter profiles. 70mm is 2.75" in metric measurement.

However, DMO stopped payment due to non-delivery of training services, and not an issue with the rockets, namely lack of
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lead-in skills training for pilots prior to conversion
! In plain language we have no training helicopters for the pilots. I don't know what that's all about. I would have thought that precedence to flying ARHs would have been given to pilots that already know how to fly, and those would simply undergo Cockpit Procedures Trainer (CPT) at facilities provided by the manufacturer on initial basis.
In any case Full Operational Capability will be achieved in December 2011, eleven years after the 18 December 2000 RTF and 17 years after the Concepts and Capabilities Committee approval was given.
Again, there seems to be a severe lack of accountability in Defence project management...er, ‘unanticipated contractor delays’

However,
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In a speech on 15 May 2008, the Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Procurement, Greg Combet analysed the reasons for the delays, attributing approximately:
* 53 per cent to industry delays—‘including an inability to meet contracted milestones by payment dates’
* 12 per cent to DMO processes—‘including administrative and contracting requirements’
* 28 per cent to issues related to the United States Military Sales System
* 4 per cent to ‘the unavailability of platforms for upgrades or work needed’, and
* 3 per cent to ‘cost savings’.
Budget Review 2008-09 - Defence issues

This caused the previous Liberal Government's Minister for Defence to conclude that
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industry’s overestimation of its ability to meet schedules as a cause for some of the delays, but he also pointed to ‘significant capacity constraints within the economy’, specifically ‘in the area of skills and infrastructure’
Now we have a Labour Government which is traditionally, nay dogmatically committed to improving the lot of the Australian workforce, improving its productivity, and dealing with the current issues of ensuing unemployment. So, maybe we will see some industry support in the Commonwealth budget that will address these Defence budget findings of the previous government because surely this Government is not going to allow the state of affairs to continue, will they?
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Old May 3rd, 2009   #10
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The Tiger wasn't really off-the-shelf, since it hadn't entered active service with anyone at the time it was bought.

I believe the idea is to focus on buying things that are already in service and operating with the capabilities desired.
IE: The exact item you are buying is being used by someone now, so you can just buy one and use it. (The C-17 would be a good example of that.)

In that situation, the only delay would be training Australian crews, and possibly setting up some support services.

Obviously, this has the fastest turn-around and the lowest risk. Cost would usually be lower, as well.

On the downside, the hardware may not be cutting edge- you'll usually be getting equipment that has been in service for a while. There's also virtually no chance for local involvement. And, of course, you have to buy what is on offer- no customisation.
Yes I agree, the ARH wasn't a good example. The C-17 was a good buy. It was put into service and rolled out in a very good time frame. We seem to want to have a new capability that we have never had like say the Boeing 737 AEW&C and go overboard with what we want it to do. Delay after delay and costing way more than it should of and what have got to show for it? Nice static displays at an air show. Now we want more ships and subs! Maybe we could sell joy ride tickets between the time we get the ship/subs and when we can actually use them on operations.
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Old May 4th, 2009   #11
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Yes I agree, the ARH wasn't a good example. The C-17 was a good buy. It was put into service and rolled out in a very good time frame. We seem to want to have a new capability that we have never had like say the Boeing 737 AEW&C and go overboard with what we want it to do. Delay after delay and costing way more than it should of and what have got to show for it? Nice static displays at an air show. Now we want more ships and subs! Maybe we could sell joy ride tickets between the time we get the ship/subs and when we can actually use them on operations.
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Yes I agree, the ARH wasn't a good example. The C-17 was a good buy. It was put into service and rolled out in a very good time frame. We seem to want to have a new capability that we have never had like say the Boeing 737 AEW&C and go overboard with what we want it to do. Delay after delay and costing way more than it should of and what have got to show for it? Nice static displays at an air show. Now we want more ships and subs! Maybe we could sell joy ride tickets between the time we get the ship/subs and when we can actually use them on operations.
From memory, we actually got our C17s right off the production line, pushed in ahead of the USMIL, to the detriment of their units and the benefit of ours. We should be thankful of that great rational decision.

I dont want a political debate, but I just want one PM to say to the chief of the ADF, "give me your list and I will make it happen". Of course there will be arguments between branches of the ADF, cant help them, but if we never have a "wish list" we can never plan long term, whatever long term is nowdays.

If I was PM, Id get grunts to talk to me, tell me the truth. No point discussing hardware with braid that is 5 rungs removed from the field.

We should be aiming for the entire army to be trained to the highest standard possible without infringing on the elite status of the SAS. Navy to have enough ships to able to offer at sea positions to ALL the sailors and have the paperwork done by Civvies. Airforce should have exactly what it wants and when it wants it.

If Kev told the Australian population "10% of your taxes are going to go directly to the ADF", no one would mind. The Indos etc would look at the sums and laugh, but with us, you get a lot of bang for your buck.

Reading the WP today, it seems as though we have forgotten our historical links to the Chinese. They are no threat to us, they actually like us. They dont need our land or resources, they have their own.

Unfortunately the yanks dont think the same way, thus we are always going to be a pawn, not a king.

IMO our priorities should be RAAF attack capability, RAN surveillance, Army defense of homeland.

Lets face it, we dont have the numbers, even when considering the SAS 1500/1 kill ratio. Lets go hi tech and low numbers.

Does any plan exist to defend Aust that is not 50 years old? I doubt it. About 10-15 years ago from memory, we moved almost everything north and kept electronics south, but thats about it.

If anyone wanted to invade us they could, it would be short lived but effective in ruining morale. Any attack on our soil would be a calamity atm. We have to stop thinking of how our northern neighbours might react to any serious military build up and just do it.

Im sick of living in a country that always worries about what others think. We are a Sovereign Nation but havent acted like one since 1901.

Christ, cant even have a slug gun anymore. or a slingshot.

Whilst I like subs, I dont see any mention of how to raise 6 additional crews, nor how to reward them with $$$ to ensure we keep them without upsetting the RAAF and ARMY applecarts.
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Old May 4th, 2009   #12
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Yesterday though I was just about told I have no clue when I suggested that use of unguided 2.75" rockets is a good idea in Afghanistan
You were talking about fast jets, not helos and by your own admission, you did not know that RAAF does not maintain an operational unguided rocket capability.

Before whingeing about inaccuracies, perhaps you could correctly quote your OWN previous statements?

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with these rocket pods being on the inner stations of the shown helicopter profiles
Wrong. Tiger operates rocket pods on the inner and outer hard points.

What was that about accuracy again?

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! In plain language we have no training helicopters for the pilots.
More rubbish. Have you heard of the Kiowa perhaps?

On top of which, perhaps you can describe in detail what the EC-135’s based at Roberston barracks, are doing exactly?
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If Kev told the Australian population "10% of your taxes are going to go directly to the ADF", no one would mind. The Indos etc would look at the sums and laugh, but with us, you get a lot of bang for your buck.
Seriously? We are moving toward 3% from 2.2% and already there are murmerings of discontent - and questions about where this this money will come from (ie what gets sacrificed). I don't think I would want to live in an Australia that spent 10% on defence

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They are no threat to us, they actually like us. They dont need our land or resources, they have their own.
Hmm, great gobs of our mineral resources currently go to China - if they don't need our resources why would they be buying from us? Why does the Chinese Govt want to buy into australian mining companies. it might be because they can see a profitable enterprise, or could it be that they are wanting to try and ensure supply?
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Old May 4th, 2009   #14
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Seriously? We are moving toward 3% from 2.2% and already there are murmerings of discontent - and questions about where this this money will come from (ie what gets sacrificed). I don't think I would want to live in an Australia that spent 10% on defence...
10% of taxes isn't 10% of GDP. In Australia, it's just over 3%. Total taxes are just over 30% of GDP.
SourceOECD: factbook 2009.
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Old May 4th, 2009   #15
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Seriously? We are moving toward 3% from 2.2% and already there are murmerings of discontent - and questions about where this this money will come from (ie what gets sacrificed). I don't think I would want to live in an Australia that spent 10% on defence
Hmm...1.9% of GDP seems to equal about 8% of Cth spending anyway (so 8% of Cth Taxes). 3% of GDP would be much much more in terms of Cth spending.

Brett.

P.S Not that I am necessarily against that mind you....

P.P.S DAMN you Swerve, damn you Sir! (beating me to it) . I am annoyed first that you did it first and second that you did it better.
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