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Advancing With Purpose 4th Edn Dec 2020

FJAG

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I've just received a copy of the above and have now read the thing in detail and I'm actually quite pleased with many "fine print" issues raised within it.

It appears that the target level for readiness and the MRP are changing so that a brigade will be the level to train towards (including as a brigade in an allied division) and a brigade will be held in a ready state for contingencies for a year rather than immediately used for deployments. It is only after the "ready" year has completed that elements of the brigade will do MTST and deploy. If I'm reading that right, then that's big. In addition, the paper suggests that symmetric force structure vis a vis brigades is not necessarily going to continue. There is an emphasis on the medium force but with a much stronger emphasis on light and heavy enhancements than in prior years. Couple that with commitments to tank life extension, long range precision fires, anti-tank systems, GBAD, and light force equipment enhancements and once again you are talking a much more capable force at either end of the spectrum assuming those are achievable goals (there are lots of cautions about the realities of finances).

There are some positive aspects to enhancement of the ARes as well albeit my big bugbear - a force equipped, organized and trained for expansion rather than mere augmentation - isn't there. Baby steps.

Divestment is in there and I don't like it too much. I think we could make better use of such equipment as hand-me-downs/ reserve-in-storage status but at least the divestment seems to be tied to a cycle that mandates new replacement equipment as a prerequisite. We'll see how that works out. The divestment at least is tied to "old equipment" rather than "old capabilities".

I think this could go further especially, as per the ARes, but all-in-all it seems to signal an interesting direction that builds capabilities more in line with a complex environment that has peer conflict included in it. Still far too many buzzwords for my liking.

Interested in other folks comments about this document

🍻
 

MilEME09

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Two areas as a member of the ARes I see as important. The bigger one, below is reevaluating the IS needs of the PRes, as the amount of Institutional support hasn't changed in 30 years, but our authorized strength has grown. I hope there is also a change to class B contracts, career class B needs to end, put a cap of 1 resign unless no one else can fill the position. Class B's should be about ARes members getting OJT and experience, not being a out of trade CQ for 15 years as a retirement job.
  • Analysis of, and measures to optimize, the efficiency of ARes administrative practices will reduce the overall administrative burden of its leaders, soldiers, and units. This includes an in-depth workflow analysis to determine the required level of full-time support at unit and sub-unit levels to properly administer and effectively train the ARes;
 

CBH99

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Personally, the document doesn’t really seem to mean anything. It comes across more like “this is what we’d like to do” - while ignoring the important aspects of budgets, projects actually moving forwards, political interference, etc etc.

- A GBAD capability in any form would be fantastic. Whether it’s a highly capable & cheap MANPAD system, or vehicle mounted radar & weapons, or something more substantial. (A combination of at least the first 2 would be ideal).

^^ cheap to acquire, maintain, and train. And extremely necessary depending on our next AO.

- Upgrade all of our Leopard 2’s to the same standard, for ease of maintenance and training. (Having 3 different models in service is actually killing us on the maintenance side)

- Find a way to replace logistics vehicles on a regular basis. (How do police services keep their vehicle fleets relatively new?)


All in all, the document says some things which would be great if they happened. But for some of these things to happen, we would need politicians in treasury board, public works, DND, etc - that are capable of accomplishing simple tasks in a timely manner. Sooooooooo....

0.02
 

daftandbarmy

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I've found the biggest problem with this document so far, on page 1:


“Therefore I say: ‘Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.’”

- Sun Tzu, The Art of War2



As long as the 'Happy Talk', and various levels of meaningless back patting, continues to outweigh the really tough conversations we need to have (and listen to) connected to reality, we'll go on aimlessly wheel spinning IMHO....

Oh, and any military document that wants to be taken seriously probably shouldn't virtue signal about climate change being a bigger threat than resurgent totalitarianism and radical Islam, which is the impression I get when glancing through the 'Strategic Context'.
 

brihard

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I've found the biggest problem with this document so far, on page 1:


“Therefore I say: ‘Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.’”

- Sun Tzu, The Art of War2



As long as the 'Happy Talk', and various levels of meaningless back patting, continues to outweigh the really tough conversations we need to have (and listen to) connected to reality, we'll go on aimlessly wheel spinning IMHO....
Yeah right, don't pretend that reading "in-depth workflow analysis" didn't get you all hot and bothered. :giggle:
 

FJAG

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Dude, my Miro is vibrating!
How's that working for you? We had a team meeting yesterday about using Google Suite for a collaborative work tool for our writing/editing/production team (cause its darn cheap) - Let me know by PM so we don't clog this thread.

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CBH99

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I've found the biggest problem with this document so far, on page 1:


“Therefore I say: ‘Know the enemy and know yourself; in a hundred battles you will never be in peril.’”

- Sun Tzu, The Art of War2



As long as the 'Happy Talk', and various levels of meaningless back patting, continues to outweigh the really tough conversations we need to have (and listen to) connected to reality, we'll go on aimlessly wheel spinning IMHO....

Oh, and any military document that wants to be taken seriously probably shouldn't virtue signal about climate change being a bigger threat than resurgent totalitarianism and radical Islam, which is the impression I get when glancing through the 'Strategic Context'.
I totally agree. From a military / firepower / operations perspective, I agree with you. Terrorism & a very potent totalitarian regime openly trying to sabotage us are much more potent military threats than “climate change”.

However, I don’t think we should downplay the host of dangers that climate change will present. If just albeit slowly.

Severe weather & natural disasters. Forest fires, floods, etc. Food scarcity in some parts of the world, which will lead to instability & conflict. (Which may tie directly into peer conflict depending on circumstances). Rising oceans flooding cities & coastal areas.

Shrinking areas of habitable land, with an increasing population.


I don’t think this was the right document to mention climate change. Especially when the world collectively seems happy to set a goal which is pathetically low. Military papers should skip over to virtue signalling, agreed... imagine that’s for another government department
 

Haggis

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I don’t think this was the right document to mention climate change. Especially when the world collectively seems happy to set a goal which is pathetically low. Military papers should skip over to virtue signalling, agreed... imagine that’s for another government department
You will probably see every single high level policy document mention "climate change" under this government. If the PM tells the MND that it's a priority, then it's a priority.
 

FJAG

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You will probably see every single high level policy document mention "climate change" under this government. If the PM tells the MND that it's a priority, then it's a priority.
And if you can convince the government that the virtue signaling issue of the day is important to you then maybe, just maybe, they'll throw and extra billion into the pot ... or at the very least not take an extra billion out of your budget for not supporting their agenda.

🙂
 

CBH99

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And if you can convince the government that the virtue signaling issue of the day is important to you then maybe, just maybe, they'll throw and extra billion into the pot ... or at the very least not take an extra billion out of your budget for not supporting their agenda.

🙂
Is DND still returning $1B to $2B at the end of each fiscal year?
 

MilEME09

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Is DND still returning $1B to $2B at the end of each fiscal year?
Probably, this year might be different because of OP LASER and Vector. That said I hope someone finally wakes up to the problems of our system and fixes them. Within my life time
 

Good2Golf

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Ops Laser and Vector are Vote 1 O&M money...separate from Vote 5 Capital procurement funds.
 

Fabius

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I find this like all our documents. Lots of big talk, some fancy words, some pats on the back all around but at the end of the day I see it as an unserious amateur document that ironically fails to provide a clear direction or purpose and provides no prioritization, in fact it seems confused on its priorities stating that all Lines of Effort have equal priority. This is not made better by the statement that the Army's main effort is the "Training, Equipping and Preparation for Combat", that is not a main effort that is in effect saying the Army's Main Effort is being the Army and not useful in guiding the institution anywhere.

The Army may have amended MRP to have a Bde as the "Ready" force but right now across the force its not much different than before. I think the difference between the "Ready" element (or Contingency force) and what the previous reconstitution phase is largely symbolic not actual.
The "Ready" forces will go through the Maple Resolve Exercises in the Spring, be declared OPRED, then post a significant portion of their leadership out during APS, they will receive a similar number of institutional support tasks as in the previous model for reconstitution phase. All to say that they will not be "Ready" in the same vein as the US GRF etc.
There remains no conception of Strategic Readiness Exercises. There is talk of using the light Bn as a GRF, but that is very undeveloped and under resourced.

There is some use of the word "Mass" but there is no plan or discussion of how to achieve it. A Bde is not mass. Use of the Reserves for continued Roto 0.5 augmentation to the CBMG vice providing "Mass" is indicative of the rut that our strategic thinking is stuck in. The Army does not think as an Army it thinks as a CMBG.
 

daftandbarmy

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I find this like all our documents. Lots of big talk, some fancy words, some pats on the back all around but at the end of the day I see it as an unserious amateur document that ironically fails to provide a clear direction or purpose and provides no prioritization, in fact it seems confused on its priorities stating that all Lines of Effort have equal priority. This is not made better by the statement that the Army's main effort is the "Training, Equipping and Preparation for Combat", that is not a main effort that is in effect saying the Army's Main Effort is being the Army and not useful in guiding the institution anywhere.

The Army may have amended MRP to have a Bde as the "Ready" force but right now across the force its not much different than before. I think the difference between the "Ready" element (or Contingency force) and what the previous reconstitution phase is largely symbolic not actual.
The "Ready" forces will go through the Maple Resolve Exercises in the Spring, be declared OPRED, then post a significant portion of their leadership out during APS, they will receive a similar number of institutional support tasks as in the previous model for reconstitution phase. All to say that they will not be "Ready" in the same vein as the US GRF etc.
There remains no conception of Strategic Readiness Exercises. There is talk of using the light Bn as a GRF, but that is very undeveloped and under resourced.

There is some use of the word "Mass" but there is no plan or discussion of how to achieve it. A Bde is not mass. Use of the Reserves for continued Roto 0.5 augmentation to the CBMG vice providing "Mass" is indicative of the rut that our strategic thinking is stuck in. The Army does not think as an Army it thinks as a CMBG.


That would look beautiful in a PER for the Army Commander.

Just sayin' :)

selena just saying GIF
 

TangoTwoBravo

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Its an important document. The changes to the Managed Readiness Plan are much more than symbolic. There will be always be postings etc, but the new model is a huge improvement over the current model in terms of readiness. Previously, units came out of MR and were broken up to missions that did not really require MR. There was no chance of having a high-readiness Brigade. With the new model, units don't get "consumed" by those UNIFIERS/IMPACTS until after a year of Hold. It will take some discipline, but at least now there is a chance of success.

As for priorities and main effort, the point is that you need success in all Lines of Operation to achieve a combat-capable force.
 

FJAG

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Is DND still returning $1B to $2B at the end of each fiscal year?

Its an important document. The changes to the Managed Readiness Plan are much more than symbolic. There will be always be postings etc, but the new model is a huge improvement over the current model in terms of readiness. Previously, units came out of MR and were broken up to missions that did not really require MR. There was no chance of having a high-readiness Brigade. With the new model, units don't get "consumed" by those UNIFIERS/IMPACTS until after a year of Hold. It will take some discipline, but at least now there is a chance of success.

As for priorities and main effort, the point is that you need success in all Lines of Operation to achieve a combat-capable force.
I tend to agree. You know me, I'm one of the biggest cynics around here and have certainly dumped on my fair share of the Army's wordy foundational scribblings but this one actually seems to be signaling some positive directions. Hopefully much of that comes to fruition.

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Fabius

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I never said it is not important but important is different than good.

Is the new AMRP better? Perhaps, like you said postings etc will always exist is true. However does every unit need to be impacted every year?
Readiness is in my opinion not simply AMRP plus Ex MR.

As for priorities and main effort, while your statement is not untrue it’s not helpful to the institution. The US Army equivalent documents is better written in that it states that while efforts on their LoE will proceed simultaneously their main effort is on readiness through to 2021 and then switching to modernization in 2022 accepting risk in force readiness while doing so.
Is that not clearer and more useful to the institution.

Edited to add. I hope what the document lays out is followed up with some clear directions on how we will achieve this. I think it’s a good direction and start to be fair but if we are going to achieve Build 1 for F2025 we need to get a move on. It’s 2021 so we have four years to undertake some major changes. Changes that we have not decided on or socialized.
 
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