Australian Army Discussions and Updates

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
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.
 

Whiskyjack

Honorary Moderator / Defense Professional / Analys
Verified Defense Pro
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.
With a brigade with upgraded M113s (if they are all in service?) and no SP Artillery would not be my choice to go into Iran, North Korea.

Compared to a similar British/American brigade with Warrior/M2 etc I'm not sure that it would make sence to send such a brigade into action as you describe above. My opinion anyway. :)
 

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
I agree, i cant see the gov sending a brigade...however, a task force attached to a multi national force of say a mech bn, a cav unit and an amoured sqn plus SF all on rotation is not far fetched...and would leave the rest of the Army at home to deal with regional operations...
 

Whiskyjack

Honorary Moderator / Defense Professional / Analys
Verified Defense Pro
I agree, i cant see the gov sending a brigade...however, a task force attached to a multi national force of say a mech bn, a cav unit and an amoured sqn plus SF all on rotation is not far fetched...and would leave the rest of the Army at home to deal with regional operations...
I agree that a task force is the most likely scenario, but I have my doubts around the mech infantry with 13 ton M113s opposed to M2s and Warriors that are approaching the 30 ton mark with 25mm-30mm cannon.

I also wouldn't mind seeing one of the cav regiments go slightly heavier either.
 
A

Aussie Digger

Guest
I agree that a task force is the most likely scenario, but I have my doubts around the mech infantry with 13 ton M113s opposed to M2s and Warriors that are approaching the 30 ton mark with 25mm-30mm cannon.

I also wouldn't mind seeing one of the cav regiments go slightly heavier either.
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.

The lack of SP guns may be fixed sooner than most think. DMO has sent a detachment to the Netherlands to discuss Afghanistan but also a deal to acquire 18x PZH-2000 guns that are surpluss to Dutch requirements and have been mothballed.

This would allow for 1 Brigade to be outfitted with it's guns immediately AND the School of Artillery, with addtional new builds ordered to equip 7 Brigade when they are manufactured.

It is a realistic proposition that the SPG part of Land 17 will be completely by passed with this decision...

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.
 

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
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.

The lack of SP guns may be fixed sooner than most think. DMO has sent a detachment to the Netherlands to discuss Afghanistan but also a deal to acquire 18x PZH-2000 guns that are surpluss to Dutch requirements and have been mothballed.

This would allow for 1 Brigade to be outfitted with it's guns immediately AND the School of Artillery, with addtional new builds ordered to equip 7 Brigade when they are manufactured.

It is a realistic proposition that the SPG part of Land 17 will be completely by passed with this decision...

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.
And seems to that it will! It really feels like a build up at the moment,not a panicked build up, but a faster than normal build up. There is an element of urgency.
 

Whiskyjack

Honorary Moderator / Defense Professional / Analys
Verified Defense Pro
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.

The lack of SP guns may be fixed sooner than most think. DMO has sent a detachment to the Netherlands to discuss Afghanistan but also a deal to acquire 18x PZH-2000 guns that are surpluss to Dutch requirements and have been mothballed.

This would allow for 1 Brigade to be outfitted with it's guns immediately AND the School of Artillery, with addtional new builds ordered to equip 7 Brigade when they are manufactured.

It is a realistic proposition that the SPG part of Land 17 will be completely by passed with this decision...

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.
Call me a sceptic, but I just can't convince myself on the upgraded M113. I try but it just does not seem ‘right’ to me.

Good news if the army gets the PZH-2000, I consider it one of the best SPG out there at the moment and better than anything that the US army operates! Would like to see another 3-4 added to make up for training and spares.

Also I guess it leaves 3 batteries to support 5 units. So a follow-on for another 14 would be a good idea IMO. But I am getting ahead of myself!!

Great news if it goes ahead. And going back to Old Faithful’s comment would seem to be aimed at a more high intensity conflict than would seem warranted fore the immediate region!
 
A

Aussie Digger

Guest
And seems to that it will! It really feels like a build up at the moment,not a panicked build up, but a faster than normal build up. There is an element of urgency.
I agree. Though Army would also probably need to have it's new battlefield communications system in place by then and operational Tiger ARH's, which may be a bit difficult to pull off in 2 years or so.

3 years though???
 

Whiskyjack

Honorary Moderator / Defense Professional / Analys
Verified Defense Pro
Given the 2 x Mech Inf, 1 x M1, and 2 x 'Medium' Cav, there is the capability to keep 2-3 task forces deployed for a year of operations but, past that there is no real depth.

Assuming 18 SPGs, with 59 M1s, they almost need to double that to allow for an extra regiment of armour and artillery to sustain a 50% deployment out to the 12-18 month mark.
 

riksavage

Banned Member
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!
 
A

Aussie Digger

Guest
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...
 

Simon9

Defense Professional
Verified Defense Pro
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.


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.

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.
 
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phreeky

Member
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.
 

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
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.
 

Tasman

Ship Watcher
Verified Defense Pro
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.
 

Mick73

Defense Professional
Verified Defense Pro
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 that’s 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 didn’t 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. What’s 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 it’s 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!
 

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
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.
 

Mick73

Defense Professional
Verified Defense Pro
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?
 

old faithful

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
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!
 

FutureTank

Banned Member
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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