View Full Version : Is NATO dead?

21 Jan 04,, 07:46
I thought it died when Germany and France denied Turkey its request for aid in defense for the Iraq War. It was the first time that a NATO member requested defense aid and it was denied.

That's what killed NATO effectively, IMHO.

21 Jan 04,, 08:04
I think it was more aimed at the U.S. who was attepting to get Turkey to join the co-allition of the willing. Without the aid turkey wouldn't enter the war so France once again won a battle in the diplomatic ring, then the U.S. went after Iraq anyway showing what they thought of the French opinion on the matter.

Officer of Engineers
21 Jan 04,, 13:38
The alliance ain't well but it ain't dying either. The other members strong armed Germany and Belgium into accepting Turkey's request and effectively kicked France out of the decision cycle by refering to the Planning Committee to which France ain't a member.

There's talk of the Euro Force replacing NATO but until they start spending the money where it needs to be spent, the Europeans would still have to rely on NATO assets (read American) to get the job done.

21 Jan 04,, 23:18
Heh, total EU military expenditures don't even come anywhere near what the US spends in a year.

I'd be surprised if total EU military expenditures were more than $120 billion. Compared to $400 billion of the US.

24 Jan 04,, 02:16
Euro Force will never compare to the US military, they dont have enough ground troops, tanks, aircraft carriers, etc.

24 Jan 04,, 14:55
EU also has problems spending the money effectively. The prolems the US has keeping un-needed bases open simply because they porvide jobs would be mcuch worse in Europe. The political squabling over weapons system production and deployment becomes much more political than operational as compared to the US. In fact it would probably be worse than it is now if not for constant critiquing by US military members helping to drive what little notes of sanity that exist in their spending habits. Things like 3 modern but "roughly equivalent" fitghter types is just plain not smart, and that is just one of the most visible problems.

24 Jan 04,, 15:31
I don't see a role for NATO. The terrorists aren't in the North Atlantic, the battlefied isn't in Germany.

Of course, quite were Terror(tm) actually is at any one time will obviously be determined in an Orwellian manner!

24 Jan 04,, 16:50
The terrorists aren't in the North Atlantic
Where are they?

24 Jan 04,, 16:53
At this moment they are where ever our glorious leaders want them to be. Better check under your bed before you go to sleep tonight.

However, NATO is largely structured to fight the warsaw pact as you know.

24 Jan 04,, 16:55
Originally posted by Trooth
[B]At this moment they are where ever our glorious leaders want them to be. Better check under your bed before you go to sleep tonight.
So there aren't Al-Qaeda cells in most major Western European cities?

That's a relief. [/sarcasm]

24 Jan 04,, 17:01
Perhaps there are. Do you expect to have tanks rumbling through Covent Garden or an airstrike on La Defense?

In response to al-qeada operations in the US, you wouldn't have expected an artillery barrage on Boston Airport would you?

NATO isn't structured for that role but, i don't envisage those al-qeada cells in the west being quelled by militaristic measures anyway.

24 Jan 04,, 17:07
Perhaps there are?

No, Western Europeans have quite a problem on their hands with Islamist radicals in their countries.

24 Jan 04,, 17:44
Your solution to this is military? You propose to deploy NATO troops into Western European cities?

24 Jan 04,, 18:36
Originally posted by Trooth
Your solution to this is military? You propose to deploy NATO troops into Western European cities?
I was replying to your assertion that there are no terrorists in the North Atlantic area.

24 Jan 04,, 18:40
i am pretty confident there aren/t Unless they are in a boat :)

But i never said that there were no terrorists in European countries. I simply said that the terrorist are not in the North Atlantic.

Terrorism has been all pervasive for years. However currently the terrorists are in the middle east. No doubt at some point in the future the anti-terrorist target will change, and then the focus may well become Europe. Then there might be a need for a North Atlantic Anti-Terrorist Organisation. But NATO isn't and won't be it, it is structured to fight a different war.

Also, unlike the current terrorist "hot zone". I do not envisage Nato member countries going for "regime change" against each other.

24 Jan 04,, 20:53
Originally posted by Ironman
Perhaps there are?

No, Western Europeans have quite a problem on their hands with Islamist radicals in their countries.
AL Qaeda is belived to have cells in over 80 countries, including most major Western European cities, they are everywhere, even in Minninesota (thats the last place I expected them).

24 Jan 04,, 23:04
Well we know they were active in Boston, why surprised at Minnesota?

24 Jan 04,, 23:50
Originally posted by Trooth
Well we know they were active in Boston, why surprised at Minnesota?

Are you implying something about Boston?

25 Jan 04,, 00:27

I am stating they at least had, if not have, an active Al-qaeda cell.

25 Jan 04,, 00:37
Originally posted by Trooth

I am stating they at least had, if not have, an active Al-qaeda cell.

Never mind then

Officer of Engineers
25 Jan 04,, 04:02

You have a major misunderstanding about the nature of the North Atlantic Treaty. The very fact that every NATO member reacted effectively and decisively states that the alliance is very well capable and willing to fight the War on Terror.

To answer some of your points, German, Italian, British, as well as Canadian and American planes were in the air, ready to do the unthinkable - shoot down civilian airliners over North American air space.

The navies cut off Afghanistan.

22SAS was the first in Afghanistan. Your country and mine supplied entire battle groups to that effort.

Current missions include SFOR, KFOR, ISAF, and Operation Enduring Freedom. The North Atlantic Treaty is very well active.

25 Jan 04,, 13:07
Yes, but they were all large scale military operations and I don't see a role for NATO in "sorting out" Syria, Iran, Israel/Palestine and all the other problem hotspots that seem to be on Dubya's world tour.

Rumsfeld's comments have to be respected, even if i don't necessarily agree with them. The "mission defines the coalition" (or something similar). In other words it isn't going to be a WWI type scenario were when the ballon goes up all the traditional allies line up and go at it, it is going to be finding more local allies "of use". This use i forsee to be largely political. From a military standpoint the coalition is likely to be largely if not entirely US, possibly depending on the terrorist that has currently gained focus.

For example, it is always handy for the US to have the backing of at least Arab nation before it invades another.

I imagine that, after the middle east, the world tour may move elsewhere, but when it comes to North America and Western / Central Europe I don't see NATO troops stomping into a mosque in Brixton. I don't see NATO tanks rumbling through Montreal, Minneapolis, Manchester, or Munich.

Officer of Engineers
25 Jan 04,, 14:47
Yes, the mission defines the profile and the missions are

1) to keep the sea lanes openned

2) to maintain a credible forward strike force of

a) at least a bde
b) 1 strike squadron of 12 planes
c) 12 ships

3) to provide emergency relief to both civilian and military natures.

We ain't ready for a WWI scenario anymore, not even during the Cold War. What the Alliance is currently aiming for is the ability to insert a ready and decisive force anywhere on earth and that is still where large military bases in Germany and Britain are still needed. You need large runways to handle C-17s and you need large armies just to have a bde ready.

And Eastern Europe ain't all that stable and NATO is sorely needed there if only to provide an Albanian solution to a lot of problems.

And as of two years ago, the North Atlantic Charter has been revised to act outside of the North Atlantic area - in direct response to the Article 5 Declaration

An attack on one is an attack on all.

And the attack came from Afghanistan.

The Alliance is well alive and effective.

25 Jan 04,, 15:37
I don't disagree with any of the above. And i deliberately left Eastern Europe out of my "places NATO troops won't be".

However like a good many things in this "Mew New World Order" i think we haven't nearly had the dust settle yet and whilst the mission defines the profile, US foreign policy is that it also defines the coalition. US foreign policy is is embracing if not inclusive at the moment.

Therefore non NATO members will form parts of the coaltion and NATO members will not form part of a coalition. All of this will start to alter NATO's role. Perhaps not its hcarter, but its actuall operational roles.

Much like the UN. Nothing has change din the UN's charter, nor even its method of operation. But the UN has been changed.

Forgive my ignorance i understand that France is not part of the Planning Committee, but how did that come about?

25 Jan 04,, 17:56
Forgive my ignorance i understand that France is not part of the Planning Committee, but how did that come about?
De Gaulle withdrew France from all decision making processes in NATO back in the 60's.

Officer of Engineers
25 Jan 04,, 20:17

I'm not understanding you. You're not disagreeing with my statements in that the Alliance is effective and decisive but you continue to assert that the Alliance has no future.

Or am I misunderstanding you?

In actual operations, a NATO mission remains a NATO mission (KFOR, SFOR, ISAF), non-NATO members may and do contribute (the Australians being a very prime example) but they answer to the NATO HQ. My regiment would feel very well at home in any of these forces. However, non-NATO members, including the Australians, would require 4-6 weeks to accustom themselves to our operational procedures.

25 Jan 04,, 20:25
I am not disagreeing at all with the current charter, nor the committment of nations to Nato (in terms of brigades, forces etc). I am saying that NATO's role will change because it will not be the instrument of military action it once was.

The US has already stated that it will use alliances as it sees fit for its missions. NATO now has a competitor, that of the "Coallition of the {insert spin here}" that is being cnstructed for "Operation {insert name of target here}" that may or may not include NATO member countries.

The UN was swept aside as an irrelevancy in the build up to the Iraq war. The UN didn't change its role, its charter or its list of member nations. I see the same thing happening with NATO.

25 Jan 04,, 20:41
Yep your right the UN is stilled made up of the same Petty Dictatorships.

Officer of Engineers
25 Jan 04,, 20:44
The biggest counter to your arguement is 11 Sept. NATO forces were immediately available. Only the Alliance was able and willing to committ to the defence of a member state. No other Coalition, other than NORAD, could have reacted in that fashion.

Even taking the Iraq War into consideration, all member states indirectly contributed, by backfilling the US V Corp's obligations to NATO, freeing that force to go into Iraq. In some cases, like that of the Canadians, directly providing flanking protection to US CVBGs. That kind of support and integration could not happen without the cross training and role support the Alliance provide.

Also, the forces directly the US would count on, like the Brits, came from member states contribution to the Immediate Reaction Force. In the case of Afghanistan, the RM's 45 Commando Group and the Canadian 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry came directly from NATO's Immediate Reactionary Force (Land). In other words, NATO provides the structure to which these forces are maintained at the ready for expeditionary purposes. IMF (L) did not committ totally, having Dutch and German troops as well, but they did keep the British and the Canadians ready for a very short response.

No other Coalition, including the Australians, could provide such a ready force for these contingencies.

25 Jan 04,, 22:06
This is the bit where i think i was confusing earlier and i hope i don't do it again.

All of those things will remain in place. Some of those roles will continue, but the major role will now be things like backfilling. It won't be NATO operations against the war on terror, at least not in my opinion.

At the end of the day, the core alliances will drive these things forward and the troops will come from the same old suspects, but the alliances themselves will change, and i don't see NATO having the role that we might have envisaged for it 10 or 20 years ago.

Officer of Engineers
25 Jan 04,, 23:41
I see where our major misunderstanding is. For a lack of better term, you're looking at NATO from political intent purposes. I, as a soldier, look at NATO from the capability perspective.

NATO is developing and maintaining a force projection capability half way across the globe. That capability is there to be used. From a military perspective, it is fool hardy to dismiss the capability because REMFs can't play nice together. In other words, NATO is quite capable of launching and supporting a divisional level joint force assault. Only a military incompetent fool would believe that infantile behaving politicians would keep the generals from using this force in every way possiple.

25 Jan 04,, 23:49
Well i would class myself as militarily incompetant. But than i class most polticians as fairly infantile.

26 Jan 04,, 04:32
What about combining Nato and the UN and get a credible force that's commited to doing the right thing for a change? Nato attacks the former Yugoslavia without UN approval and likely saved thousands if not millions of lives, while the UN deemed itself as the world morality and sat back durring Ruwanda (and countless other wars) and actively condemns Isreal for not doing enough for peace, Isreal by the way just making a deal to release 400 arabs for just 1 hostage and three dead soldiers. Wait a minute....on second thought lets just let the UN die and make NATO its replacement.

26 Jan 04,, 05:03
Smiling Assasin

The Rwanda fiasco was largely to US's fault. The French and Canadians were willing to go in but US blocked UN mandate to use force.

As for the ineptness of UN, US, Britain, France, Libya, third world pinpot dictators are to be blamed. In short, every country shares the blame for the ineffectiveness of UN but largely the most of the blame goes to the Big 5 that hold the veto power.

Officer of Engineers
26 Jan 04,, 05:44

The Kosovo War was a mistake in more ways than one. There was no slaughter, at least not on the scale perpuated by the media. There was no massacre. What was reported was the rearranging of combat dead by the KLA.

Alot of former CF members, including MGen Lewis MacKenzie and myself testified against that war.

The ethnic Albanians were in danger of freezing to death, not being shot. The reasons being was that the the KLA hid behind women skirts and children toys. The Serb answer to those human shields - get out. Get out of your homes. Get out of your farms. Get out from protecting those thugs.

The KLA was just another bunch of thugs. The reverse ethnic cleansing of the Serbs from Kosovo just showed good we really are at supporting thugs.

NATO's IMF (L) was also the basis for the UN's SHIRBRIG (Standby force, HIgh Readiness BRIGade). It was first use successfully in the Ethiopian-Eritrea War.


Canada was in no position to committ to Rwanda. The bulk of our forces was committed to UNPROFOR at the time. I also don't think we had the stomache to go in. Gen Maurice Baril was at the UN in NY at the time. It was he who countermanded Gen Dallaire's pre-emptive strike.

I am of the opinion that you cannot assign a General without assigning his own forces. There something to be said about the direct chain of command instead running back to Ottawa, Brussels, or NY for okays.

26 Jan 04,, 18:50
Then why didn't the UN or the Big 5 learn from the mistakes?

AFAIK, they have not bothered to form a fact finding mission to find out what went wrong or how to fix it. All they cared was about their own political ends. To me, it sounds like they don't care about the functioning of the UN.


every organization has its faults in the beginnings. The question of the ability to remain relevant despite its faults lies in the commitment to fix and change.

So far, I have seen none. That means there's no committment from the Big 5 to fix the flaws. As a result, I put the blame of the ineptness of UN to the Big 5 largely.

Officer of Engineers
26 Jan 04,, 19:16
The UN did file a scathing report that condomned the UN failings and blames everyone except Gen Dallaire. I happen to disagree with that but I am not the author.

The recommendations included placing a highly specialized bde at the UN disposal to be used by any ground commander who deemed it necessary. SHIRBRIG is a step in that direction.

I doubt that would happen. No way in hell would Western armies place themselves under the orders of a tin pot general who has a score to settle - read the Nigerians.

By and large, the report is forgotten and ignored. Part of it is racism. Who cares about 800,000 starving blacks who were hacked up? And yet we went to war over 43 ethnic Albanians who were "massacred."

26 Jan 04,, 23:50
Did they ever thought about the idea of trainging and retaining generals who would be above the political squabbles and needs to settle scores? That way, they don't have to turn over command of a brigade to a 3rd World pin pot general. They would be turning command over to a very qualified general.

Officer of Engineers
27 Jan 04,, 02:32
And say to those 3rd world countries that your military is a piece of crap? That your generals ain't worth to shine my pvt's boots.

Ain't very diplomatic and the UN is all diplomacy.

Aside from that, that is a step to a world gov't and no one is ready to accept that. Unless the UN can fund its own army, no one is going to accept a general who they themselves didn't qualify. SHIRBRIG is comprised of national armies that are on standby to be loaned to the UN. In the case of Canada, their committement to IMF (L) is also their committement to SHIRBRIG.

I also want to say something about how the UN choose their generals. It's the old boys' club. Gen Dallaire was certainly not qualified to command the Belgians. In fact, he was not qualified to command infantry, being a gunner. However, it was Canada's turn to send a general and it was Dallaire's turn to grab a high profile mission in order for him to punch his ticket to his eventual (never happenned) assention to Chief of Defence Staff.

28 Jan 04,, 04:23
Another problem is that some country's that do send troops send them equiped with substandard equipment and are merely there to collect the rental fees. In addition as already mentioned the UN has no credible military chain of command. Why not combine the UN and some or all parts of Nato? We need a "world" army that speaks and acts when the speaking is just being egnored.

Officer of Engineers
28 Jan 04,, 05:03
Simply put, NATO officers are not qualified to command non-NATO troops.

28 Jan 04,, 11:08
what you mean they need a degree in commanding to command them or are they simply stupid?

Officer of Engineers
28 Jan 04,, 14:41
I mean NATO officers have no idea at how well or how bad or even how differently non-NATO troops are trained.

28 Jan 04,, 20:58
Colonel tabulated the differences between InA (non-NATO) and NATO forces a long time back. Search for them in archives, it should be in the Asian thread.

30 Jan 04,, 09:41
hey thanks to both of you some nice information i look into it soon.

31 Jan 04,, 12:18
"Nato? We need a "world" army that speaks and acts when the speaking is just being egnored."

Yeah, we need that like we need a fucking hole in our collective heads.

The UN has TOO MUCH power now....forget giving them their own troops.

31 Jan 04,, 14:04
Speaking of the UN, I fucking hate them. Especially "Coffee" Annan.

Did you hear(/read about) his last speech about Europe and non-western immigrants?

31 Jan 04,, 14:33
No. Post a link?

31 Jan 04,, 14:46
In Google this article popped up:


31 Jan 04,, 15:00

I don't see the specific reference to "non-western immigrants" but it sounds like he is trying to get Europe to change its attitudes to immigrants and to take a more "Give me your tired, your poor".

Doesn't seem totally ridiculous to me.

31 Jan 04,, 15:05
Everyone knows which immigrants he's talking about...

Luckily, even in Europe, they start ignoring the UN more and more aswell. For example, noone wants Turkey in the EU. Which is great!

31 Jan 04,, 16:12
Sorry. It must be everyone-1. I have no idea what you are talking about.

31 Jan 04,, 22:12
"Sorry. It must be everyone-1."


...by the way I'm already tired and poor....we don't need anymore over here like that!....well ok I'm just tired.

06 Feb 04,, 13:21
It may not be fair to comment on an extract of a speech. However, I am unable to subscribe to the logic of Kofi Anan that Europe or elsewhere, poor people should be accommodated by richer nations, just because they are richer. Then, being rich would be a serious disadvantage.

However, I am not in a position to comment on the effect immigrants have had on the economy of these nations in the current times and I am not confining myself to the poor or the illegals who are mostly illiterates. Included are the educated and skilled too.

That all immigrants are scum is also a fallacy. The US has been a nation of immigrants and the immigrants have contributed immensely to the technical and economic clout that the US has of now. Therefore, immigration is not a totally one way show. To wit, the German Jews have contributed extensively. The dislike or intolerance for immigrants who are socially, culturally not the peers of original immigrants is an old hat. In fact, there is a belief, which may be flawed, that the Balfour Declaration granting the Jews a permanent homeland was but a backdoor method to ensure that Europe was 'cleansed' humanitarian like, of the Jews, who were always taken as second class. Shakespeare in Merchant of Venice poignantly brings out the humiliation of being a Jew in Europe. Cynically observed, the Balfour Declaration did not ensure the strong foundation of Israel and left it half baked. An intresting way to keep the cauldorn on the boil and have one's cake and eat it too! While Hitler maybe the icon of anti Jew hatred in Europe, the other nations cannot absolve themselves too of this stigma. There is a raging debate that the Vatican did not condemn Hitler, which it should have done, given the message of human kindness of Christ. That the Jews have contributed richly to the heritage, culture and economy of Europe also indicates that all immigrants are not junk material and Jews were basically immigrants to Europe. The interesting part is that they kept to themselves and did not interfere in the host countries culture or politics and yet they were despised!

Likewise, there is a feeling in the ex colonies of Europe, which are now independent countries, that it is 'pay back time' since much of the riches of the ex colonial countries have contributed immensely to the richness that the European nations today have. Notwithstanding, it does not mean that the illiterates and the unskilled of the poor countries 'invade' richer nations.

Immigration and illegal immigration cannot be stopped. The rich want poor labour and an illegal is the ideal one, since they can be blackmailed into submission [as it was written in another thread about the Mexican illegals in the US]. It keeps the fat cats in good comfort.

It must also be understood that none wants to leave his homeland for the sake of a lark. Compulsions forces men to do so as compulsions forced European Nations to have wrest and carve colonies in the yesteryears.

07 Feb 04,, 13:42
Most sterotypical anti-immigrant sentiment partially stems from the fact that the immigrant communities do often band together, do often not speak the native language (they speak their own) and do set up businesses and cmmunities supplying each other's needs that are nearly always run and operated by people of a similat ethnic "persuasion".

But then that is only natural. When you visit a foreign land and you encounter people speaking your own language, who undertand your own beliefs and customs it is only natural to flock together. This isn't even something only the "third worldians" do. Look at Earl's Court in London. You can't hurl an empty tinny in there without hitting several Australians, Go to Australia and the poms do the same.

And so on.

There is currently a large problem with Asylum Seekers in Europe. Clearly seekrs of asylum should be protected, but a lot are just economic migrants. What Annan is saying is that perhaps current thinking (that economic migration is just a load of spongers who can't be bothered to fuel their own economy just coming to bleed developed economies) is misplaced and that said economic migrants not only provide a rich source of labour for the developed world, but also act as a channel of third world aid. Perhaps by having more economic migration, there would be less need for handouts from the 1st world to the 3rd world.

I also think his comments need to be thought of within the larger Asylum Seeker context that is currently an issue in Europe.

08 Feb 04,, 01:53
My take on immigration in general:

Immigration is probably the most important issue any country has to address. Immigration brings diversity, diversity brings new ideas and new ideas bring economic and industrial prosperity. Unforunately immigration and diversity also cause social problems, everything from schooling to racism must be dealt with. Personally I believe the benefits of legal immigration far out weigh the problems, and a reduction in illegals would allow room for more legals. I will support the use of foreign workers, people that don't want to immigrate, in limited numbers and with some form of regulation. I can't support the use of illegals though, and don't believe the penaltys are nearly strict enough for those caught smuggling and/or employing them. There are too many people willing to do it legaly, and sneaking in places them right on the edge of criminal in my eyes.

Ray, I noticed you mentioned the anti Jew hatred in Europe around WW2. That hatred brought alot of really good people to the United States and contributed greatly to the defeat of the Axis powers, as well as pushing the US toward the European social ideals. The US and Europe wouldn't be the same places without it.

"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door."
- Statue of Liberty

"We're all very different people; we're not watoosie, we're not Spartans. We're Americans, with a capital A, huh? You know what that means? Do ya? That means that our forefathers were kicked out of every decent country in the world. We are the wretched refuse. We're underdogs, we're mutts! Here's proof: his nose is cold. But there's no animal that's more faithful, that's more loyal, more loveable than the mutt."
- Stripes written by Len Blum & Daniel Goldberg

08 Feb 04,, 04:47
Great. I liked that saying on the Statue of Liberty.

I was about to pack my luggage and be US bound a la Kofi Anan's advice, but then I realised I don't qualify. The sayings quoted disqualifies me!:lol

Also maybe I don't have the patience to stand for hours to be fringerprinted, photgraphed and then handcuffed! I rather walk into a local jail. Its easier and cheaper!:dbanana

I rather stay around here and 'steal' your jobs that are outsourced.:D:

Now don't throw a hissy fit. Just joking or kidding as you guys say.

08 Feb 04,, 12:39
Immigration is what is ruining our country.

08 Feb 04,, 13:02
Originally posted by Ray
Great. I liked that saying on the Statue of Liberty.

I was about to pack my luggage and be US bound a la Kofi Anan's advice, but then I realised I don't qualify. The sayings quoted disqualifies me!:lol

Kofi Anon's advice? Wouldn't his advice actually be "support the peacenik movement that wanted Saddam to stay in power"?

Originally posted by Ray Also maybe I don't have the patience to stand for hours to be fringerprinted, photgraphed and then handcuffed! I rather walk into a local jail. Its easier and cheaper!:dbanana

I rather stay around here and 'steal' your jobs that are outsourced.:D:

Now don't throw a hissy fit. Just joking or kidding as you guys say.

So your admitting your one of the Dell operators in India that were rude, inefficient, and ultimately usless with your advice for PC problems? :P

08 Feb 04,, 13:27
Originally posted by Lunatock
Kofi Anon's advice? Wouldn't his advice actually be "support the peacenik movement that wanted Saddam to stay in power"?

So your admitting your one of the Dell operators in India that were rude, inefficient, and ultimately usless with your advice for PC problems? :P

I have seen THREE Wars and not cakewalks like Iraq. I know what is death and devastation. I am not a peacenik but then I am not a warmongerer either. In addition, my experience at this mug's game is that what you are experiencing in Iraq, I saw it day in day out. Things didn't get better for me, I was on the terrorists' hit list too! So, I am fed up with all this mayhem.

No, I am not a Dell operator. Even if they are rude etc etc, let me assure you that in India we are quite polite since that is our 'culture'. Further, it it didn't mean good business, the US would not have to get a LAW passed to prevent outsourcing. And does it conform to the WTO guidelines that the US wanted the world to follow so badly and now finds itself on the wrong end of the stick?

In so far as PC software is concerned, we are the world leaders and we don't need your OK to say so.

:TY! :angel:P :D

08 Feb 04,, 13:35
Originally posted by Ray
I was about to pack my luggage and be US bound
If you do come, and you're around Tampa Florida, I'll be insulted if you don't allow me the opportunity to make sure you continue your trip with a full stomach. Don't worry, I won't cook myself or take you to the Indian resturant. ;)

08 Feb 04,, 13:42
Reference my last post, I forgot that in deference to BigRoss's style I should add a couple of bannanas.:dbanana :dbanana :dbanana :dbanana :dbanana :D

08 Feb 04,, 13:44
Thanks Confed. More than a full stomach, I sure want to see the bathing beauties that one sees in the TV srial BODYWATCH as BAYWATCH is referred to here in a tongue in cheek way! ;) ;)

And as I always say, anytime any of you guys are around, come over stay with us. I have a tolerably big house, but not in the style of Hollywood stars. It will allow you and your family to stay with relative comfort. Best of all, I also have domestic help. So lolling in bed will be room service!

09 Feb 04,, 00:20
Originally posted by Ray
Thanks Confed. More than a full stomach, I sure want to see the bathing beauties that one sees in the TV srial BODYWATCH as BAYWATCH is referred to here in a tongue in cheek way! ;) ;)
LOL! That really isn't a problem either, the beach is just minutes away. I would even be happy to show you the ultimate in American decadence, Disney World!

15 Feb 04,, 02:24
The Pentagon Versus the Europeans
Posted Feb. 12, 2004
By Martin Walker
Published: Tuesday, February 17, 2004
It could have been worse. The exchanges between top U.S. and European officials gathered in Munich last weekend for the annual security conference were testy enough. Had the news of the latest Anglo-French plans for joint-intervention forces emerged before the meeting, they could have been even nastier.

There are few topics that unsettle the Pentagon more than the creeping advance of the separate defense and security identity of the European Union (EU) countries, which the Americans fear is undermining NATO as the bastion of trans-Atlantic relations.

EU plans for separate planning headquarters, separate Rapid Reaction Forces and their own Galileo system of global-positioning satellites [see "Europe Attacks U.S. Space System"], now to be built with Chinese participation, all shake the Pentagon's confidence in the durability of NATO.

Next week, the leaders of France, Britain and Germany are to gather for a private meeting in advance of the next EU summit. British Prime Minister Tony Blair, French President Jacques Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder are expected to endorse plans from their defense staffs for the creation of military battle groups capable of swift and prolonged deployments in jungle, mountain and desert operations.

Each country is planning to assign some 1,500 troops to the new force, composed of an air-mobile infantry battalion with supporting artillery and light armor, combat engineers, logistics, communications and medical troops and HQ staffs. They would train together, ensure that all equipment was interoperable, and be able to deploy with two weeks' notice and remain operational for at least a month.

The idea, based on the success of the French-led Operation Artemis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, is (in the words of Blair's official spokesman) "for the EU to focus on the development of its rapid-reaction capabilities to enhance its ability to respond to United Nations requests in short-term crisis-management situations."

The spokesman added, "The missions will be appropriate for, but not limited to, use in failed or failing states," of which most are in Africa.

Other EU states are invited to join in, but the crucial consideration is military effectiveness. The Dutch, whose Marines work and train closely with Britain's Royal Marines, are close to signing up.

The British, as always, insist that "as with all aspects of EU defense, the initiative would be complementary to NATO, not in competition with it." The French, predictably, are presenting it as more of a specifically EU plan, and are stressing that it would almost always be deployed only with a U.N. mandate, a pointed reference to French concerns about the Anglo-American war in Iraq. The Germans, who only came aboard once the French and British had agreed, are having it both ways, noting that this is an EU initiative that also can be assigned to NATO operations.

This all sounds most reasonable and useful. But it has to be seen in the wider context of trans-Atlantic tensions; of U.S. plans to cut back sharply on its troop presence in Europe by closing bases in Germany and shifting to smaller and less permanent bases in Bulgaria, Romania and Poland [see "U.S. Military Shift in Europe Being Considered"]; and of the latest French proposal to replace the current NATO troops in Afghanistan with the Eurocorps.

The Eurocorps is a multinational force, some 50,000 strong, that includes French, German and Belgian troops (with a token Luxemburg addition) and a half-hearted Spanish commitment. It already has undertaken peacekeeping duties in the Balkans, although few top-quality, front-line troops and equipment are assigned to it.

The initial visionary goal of multilingual and interchangeable French and German units has given way to battalions organized along national lines. Knowing its limitations, the French want to field the corps in Afghanistan to give them more experience in a serious mission in the hope that it can evolve into a formidable force. The British (who pointedly have little to do with it) and the Americans are very doubtful, but the Pentagon probably will acquiesce in anything that improves the currently almost pitiful level of European military capabilities.

The dirty little secret behind the new Anglo-French plan for the joint battle groups is that the initial grand EU plan for a Rapid Reaction Force of 60,000 troops has not got very far. The troop availability, training and equipment all fall short of the plan, despite three years of planning and preparation. So the battle-group scheme, eyed askance by the Pentagon as another European ploy against NATO, is in European eyes a way to get something deployable quickly.

The bottom line is that the continental Europeans, seeing that the United States can act effectively on its own, without NATO and in defiance of the United Nations, want to have their own military potential that can operate despite any putative American veto. The British, who ought to know better, have decided to lead the process rather than be sidelined by it, because Blair understands that Britain's military strength is one of the few trump cards he can play with his European partners. The real trick will be, for Americans and Europeans alike, to let this process unfold without damaging NATO further.

Martin Walker writes the "Walker's World" column for UPI, a sister wire service of Insight.


15 Feb 04,, 02:36
From my vantage point on this fence, with my sandwiches in hand, i can see both sides of the arguement.

The US and Europe are both having to operate in a world were there is now a war against terror drawing troops from several nations into battles in disparate areas, and there is now a weakned position for NATO and the UN. But what to do?

My view (as stated above) is that NATO role will change anyway, and perhaps the only way of keeping all happy is to make that change more formal.

Officer of Engineers
15 Feb 04,, 05:14
Insight Magazine is full of it (ie shit). EuroCorps is in full compliance of the North Atlantic Treaty no matter what bullshit that magazine spilts!

15 Feb 04,, 14:32
Originally posted by Leader
anything that improves the currently almost pitiful level of European military capabilities.

That about sums it up for me. I doubt the EU would go against NATO, it's more to their advantage to have it than not to.

Officer of Engineers
21 Mar 04,, 17:29
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NATO Photo

Beach landing teams in Scotland in September 2003 during Exercise “Northern Lights”, where Allied Command Transformation carried out its first NATO experiments.
Institutionalizing Change in Nato
by Lieutenant-General J.O. Michel Maisonneuve

“The only constant is change itself.”

For decades, the management of change has provided business professionals with controversial subject matter to explore and debate. The 1990s were especially rife with articles and books touting the opportunities and pitfalls associated with ‘change management’, ‘continuous improvement’, and ‘re-engineering’ — three of a host of buzzwords developed by the gurus. To cope with change, many organizations created temporary staff divisions that were intended to remain in existence only as long as the march towards an ‘end-state’ continued. Today, however, it is acknowledged that change may not be a march towards an end state at all, but instead may be a perpetual state of affairs. So the next step in the transformation of ‘change management’ would seem to be the creation of specific organizations whose mandate is to manage change, and, further, to promote innovation, experimentation and lateral thinking. Change has gone from being a negative activity that needed to be managed to a positive one that should be promoted and encouraged.

The US military began to see the need ten years ago, and mandated one of their Unified Commanders with the task of managing change. Just four years ago, this organization was renamed Joint Forces Command (JFCOM), and ‘transformation’ was added to the list of its missions. NATO has now taken a similar step, and Allied Command Transformation (ACT) was brought into existence on 19 June 2003, with its (Headquarters Supreme Allied Commander Transformation — HQ SACT) in Norfolk, Virginia.

This article addresses NATO’s efforts to transform by setting out what transformation means in NATO and discussing the manner in which transformation will be applied within the Alliance.

What Is Transformation?
NATO sees transformation as a process and not an end-state; what is important is the journey, not the destination. Managing transformation implies always looking ahead for new concepts, ideas and technology, and quickly integrating the useful ones into all aspects of the organization — its capabilities, doctrine, training, and education. In NATO, transformation will underpin a new concept for future joint and combined warfighting. It is a cyclical process, requiring a different mindset, a different culture. For this reason, an organization such as ACT can serve as a forcing agent for change, as it is a recognized feature of change management that institutional inertia will be an obstacle to required change.

ACT will be both a sensor and a catalyst for transformation. It will be a two-way street for bridging military and security thinking intellectually, culturally, and, ultimately, technically, on a constant basis across the Atlantic.

Why Nato Needs To Transform
For several reasons, there has been intense pressure on NATO to transform. First, the post-9/11 security context made change imperative. The transformation of defence into security, and the threat from bi-polar to asymmetric, has led to the need for a commensurate response from security organizations. A ‘platform-oriented’ military culture must mutate into network-oriented systems, and there must be a progression from deconfliction of separate warfighting entities to the full integration of service capabilities.

Even before the events of 11 September 2001, NATO had begun to realize that out-of-area operations could provide a relevant role for its capabilities. Historic decisions taken at the Heads of State and Government Summit in Prague in November 2002 cemented this thinking, and resulted in the creation of the NATO Response Force (NRF), changes to the command structure, and an effort to encourage nations to commit capabilities that were lacking.

At the same time, there was acknowledgement that an intellectual and technological gap in warfighting concepts and capabilities between the US and other Alliance nations was increasing. One way to reduce the gap and remain abreast of new developments within the US was for NATO to ensure that the transatlantic link remained strong. Only thus would NATO be able to provide forces to operate alongside or with the US, be it in high-intensity warfighting, counter-insurgency or peace operations.

The Creation Of Act
One of the structural decisions made at the Summit in Prague was to go from two strategic operational commands to one (ACE), with the other (ACLANT) becoming a functional transformational command.

Supreme Allied Command Atlantic (SACLANT) had been an operational command concerned with security of the sea lines of communications, and its area of responsibility (AOR) consisted of the Atlantic Ocean. The decision to restructure NATO meant that the new command’s AOR would become the future.

The SACT Headquarters structure was developed using a strict business modeling approach, which enabled effective management of the five basic processes underpinning transformation (See Figure 1). With this new command, lateral thinking has in effect been institutionalized, since every issue is examined from at least 19 (soon to be 26) different cultural views!

Figure 1 – Five ‘Pillars’ of Transformation

ACLANT was decommissioned on 19 June 2003, and its flag lowered from the mast after more than 50 years of effective service. Allied Command Transformation was then officially born, and Admiral Ed Giambastiani of the US Navy was appointed as its commander by the NATO Secretary-General. In that Admiral Giambastiani also commands JFCOM on the US side, NATO achieves significant synergy from his appointment.

The new role of ACT is simple. It is NATO’s forcing agent for change (See Figure 2), and it has begun to influence all aspects of NATO’s activities.

Figure 2

Bringing Change To The Alliance
ACT sees its principal ‘customer’ as the Strategic Command for Operations (SACEUR) and the operations NATO is currently running. This means that any innovation developed in any of the realms that are studied can be applied as soon as feasible to ongoing operations.

The members of the Alliance are the other ‘customers’. All NATO nations are currently undergoing some level of transformation in structure, doctrine and operational concepts. There is thus synergy in ACT being a virtual ‘hub’ for transformation, where good ideas are passed from nation to nation and to the entities and partners of ACT. (See Figure 3) One important asset of SACT Headquarters is its co-location in Norfolk with Headquarters JFCOM, so NATO can easily stay abreast of transformational developments within the US military.

Figure 3

The command will use a system of coordinated concept development and experimentation to examine new ideas and bring them to full capability. We hope to bring coherence to NATO research and development through the coordination of all programmes. We have already improved the existing system of lessons learned by making it much more dynamic; this has changed from a system of post-mortem-type collection of data to an immediate feed-back loop made possible by the deployment of lessons-learned teams at the outset of missions. Through the coordination of educational curricula of NATO establishments, we hope to ensure that the newest concepts are taught and understood, as well as challenged.

NATO Photo

British and Dutch helicopters aboard the Royal Netherlands Navy’s landing craft Rotterdam during Exercise “Northern Lights”.

The jewel in the transformational crown is the NATO Joint Warfare Centre (JWC) which was opened on 23 October 2003 in Stavanger, Norway. This Centre will have both a static and deployable training mandate, enabling the training of command elements of NATO forces. It will perform interoperability activities and experimentation, as well as training. As an example of its capabilities, General Tommy Franks and his team rehearsed and trained for months at the US equivalent to the JWC before undertaking Operation “Iraqi Freedom”. This new entity will enable the Alliance to build staff skills and bring joint components together — to train instead of exercising.

One of the most useful tools for bringing transformational ideas to fruition is the NATO Response Force (NRF). This network-enabled joint and combined force is meant to be the first line of operations for the Alliance. As well, it will be the mechanism with which ACT experiments and applies new NATO operational concepts to ensure success in operations. The Joint Warfare Centre will be used to train the command elements of the NRF before every rotation.

Canadian Opportunities
Innovation, forward thinking and development of new concepts make working in SACT Headquarters very exciting, and there are a number of new opportunities for Canada and Canadians. Canada has always been a very important player in the NATO arena, not only for our considerable financial support, but also for the intellectual horsepower we bring to the table.

The CF are in the process of rebalancing the numbers of positions between the two Strategic Commands (SACEUR and SACT) to ensure that SACT receives a greater complement of CF personnel. SACT needs people from all three environments who are willing to challenge the status quo, who will not be satisfied to do things the same way they were done before, and who have energy to work on the things they do NOT know, as opposed to those they do know. Many of the right people exist in the Canadian Forces and in DND.

To ensure Canada gets the benefit of the innovations being developed within ACT and throughout other nations of the Alliance, the CF are endeavouring to place a Canadian National Liaison Representative (NLR) team in Norfolk, led by a Colonel/Captain (N) who will be SACT Headquarters’ direct conduit into Canada’s defence transformational agency (for the moment, the Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff (DCDS) Group). This NLR will likely be accredited both to the US and to NATO, so again synergy can be developed and we can tap into both efforts.

For the CF, there may be merit in considering the creation of our own Transformation Command or entity that would regroup all organizations currently performing transformational activities. Only through this mechanism will the CF have a coordinated programme with people who wake up every morning and think about innovation.

NATO Photo

Allied Command Transformation deployed a NATO Lessons Learned Team to ISAF shortly after the take-over of the mission by NATO in September 2003.

Current Concerns
Major concerns for ACT centre around resources, personnel, and credibility.

Transformation entails costs, and as our own country has realized, resources must be expended now to ensure they can be saved or used more efficiently later. SACT Headquarters is an entirely new entity, with no resource baseline, and in the current climate of financial constraint, arguments for resource requirements must be compelling indeed. Simply put, nations must be prepared to pay for the decisions they have made.

In terms of personnel, the former SACLANT Headquarters staff numbered about 400. The structure of the new SACT Headquarters will consist (conservatively) of some 550 positions, and it needs the additional 150 people to have the capacity to do the needed work. Member nations have been asked to fill the empty billets, but so far these requests are slow in being met.

It is well understood that the credibility of the new command hinges on its transformational product, so strong emphasis has been placed on the achievement of some early ‘deliverables’. Less than one month after the stand-up of the command, SACT hosted a seminar in Stavanger on observations from the Iraq conflict. The US, the UK and coalition partners, including Australia, briefed nations on issues that may become lessons to be reinserted into ongoing and future operations.

SACT has developed a training package for the NRF, which will achieve full operational capability within a few years. The dynamic lessons-learned process in ISAF was mentioned earlier. Then too, a study seminar for Alliance defence ministers was conducted in Colorado Springs in October, and the former Secretary-General, Lord Robertson, termed it the most successful such event of his tenure. So SACT has started delivering, and will do more.

There is no doubt that the future relevance of the Alliance rests with the member nations believing that NATO can transform and adapt to the new security environment, and that there is strength in fostering innovation and improvement of capabilities through a robust Allied Command Transformation. As Lord Robertson has stated, if ACT delivers only 30 percent of what it promises, it is better than what we have in place now. It is the intention of all who serve there to ensure we deliver much more.


Lieutenant-General J.O. Michel Maisonneuve is Chief of Staff, Headquarters Supreme Allied Commander Transformation in Norfolk, Virginia.

Last Modified: 2004-03-17 Important Notices

Officer of Engineers
29 Mar 04,, 21:38
I've stated this before, relying on the East Europeans to replace the traditional NATO members is a pipe dream. The East Europeans would love to talk the talk but very few can walk the walk.

New NATO members modernise their armies on a shoestring

28/03/2004 at 03:49:39

Date line: SOFIA
The seven ex-Soviet bloc states who join NATO next week are trying to modernise their armies on shoestring budgets to meet the standards of the former Cold War alliance and to show that size is not all that counts.

Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia say they have already shown in peacekeeping missions abroad that they can work as part of the NATO team.

"We have proven that we are operationally compatible as part of NATO in international missions" in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and Bosnia, Bulgarian Defence Minister Nikolai Svinarov told AFP.

But the minister admits that modernising their outdated military equipment is "a long-term aim."

A NATO diplomat in Sofia however said the alliance had not picked its new members for their firepower but for strategic reasons.

"NATO is well-equipped and does not need a single tank from its new members. These states are useful to the alliance because of their participation in international contingents and their strategic position."

Bulgarian military analyst Velizar Chalamanov said the new members should look to multinational projects as they update their armies "because these are less expensive."

He said joint projects will also ensure that new member states use the same equipment and have "better technological compatibility."

This approach is being followed by the Baltic states who adopted a common air surveillance system, Baltnet, which was developed by the US' Lockheed Martin and Norway's Scan-Matic.

Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are also already cooperating with the German military which is overseeing the command and control of their armies.

The three former Soviet states do not have fighter aircraft and have asked NATO to ensure their air defence.

Slovenia, a former Yugoslav republic, is faced with the same problem and announced on Friday that Italy would protect its air space.

Countries like Bulgaria and Slovenia who have Russian MiG-29 fighter aircraft are trying to update them to meet NATO standards.

Svinarov said France has offered to sponsor a project by the French company Sagem to update the planes as well as Bulgaria's 36 Mi-17 and Mi-24 helicopters and to allow Sofia to repay the cost "over a long period once the project has been completed."

The new members are also looking to conclude military projects with current members that include off-set contracts to allow them to profit from NATO expertise to improve their military might.

Bucharest has concluded a contract with Britain's Royal Navy to buy two frigates, the price of which will be off-set by an agreement that 80 percent of the sum will be paid in Romanian military equipment.

Romania has also inked a "strategic partnership" with the US group Northrop Grumman since Washington announced plans to move its military bases to eastern Europe.

Bulgaria has just completed the first of 68 projects aimed at modernising its military that will cost a total 1.3 billion euros (1.57 billion dollars).

The country's infantry brigade destined to be deployed abroad is being equiped with a new communication system by the Italian company Marconi at a cost of 58 million dollars in a project that should be completed at the end of this year.

Daimler-Chrysler has been contracted to replace the Bulgarian army's fleet of vehicles to the cost of 256 million euros over the next eight years.

The Canadian company Intelcan is building a third military airport for Bulgaria at Bezmer, in the southeast, according to NATO standards.

On top of that a new air defence system is being installed at Sofia's international airport and the government plans to build six Corvette patrol vessels for the navy with the help of a foreign company.

© 2004 AFP

30 Mar 04,, 09:17
If these new partners can carry the load of peacekeeping duties it could help the traditional members to focus on wartime missions and equipment.



Officer of Engineers
30 Mar 04,, 15:42
Originally posted by M21Sniper
If these new partners can carry the load of peacekeeping duties it could help the traditional members to focus on wartime missions and equipment.



We've been pushing the Hungarians and the Poles to take over the British and Canadian Sectors in SFOR II. Not happenned yet. Considering the Poles' command performances in Iraq, it ain't going to happen anytime soon either. They still have much to learn.

There's alot of political mileage Bush Jr and Rumsfeld can get out of the new Allies but military applications ain't on the list. It would litterally bankrupt the Americans trying to station bdes as mobile strike forces in Eastern Europe.

03 Apr 04,, 16:00
"It would litterally bankrupt the Americans trying to station bdes as mobile strike forces in Eastern Europe."

Methinx the plan is to just move everything in Europe East a few hundred clicks. :)

03 Apr 04,, 16:10
Originally posted by M21Sniper
Methinx the plan is to just move everything in Europe East a few hundred clicks. :)
Suits me fine, those other guys act like they don't need, or want, us there anyway.

Officer of Engineers
03 Apr 04,, 18:45
Not going to happen either way. It's going to be more expensive than building new. None of the current infrastrutures are near NATO civilian standards, never mind military. You're going to have to rip apart the roads, tear down the buildings, chuck the runways, etc before you can build new.

In the mean time, you've already got these perfectly functioning ultra modern bases in Western Europe that you've already spent billions on that can support up to a corps level expeditionary force. V Corps came from Europe. There is no way that you can support even a bde lvl expedition from Eastern Europe.

05 Apr 04,, 07:21
Believe it or not Colonel, that is the plan.

Officer of Engineers
05 Apr 04,, 07:26
Originally posted by M21Sniper
Believe it or not Colonel, that is the plan.

Until reality comes back to bite someone. Light Division bring back any memories/nightmares?

Please don't tell me you're too young.

05 Apr 04,, 07:35
I never said the plan would work...just that this's the plan.

There have been so many debacles over the years, not sure i remember exactly which one you mean.

Please refresh an old grunt with a bad memory. ;)

05 Apr 04,, 14:43
My first guess was the Light Brigade, charging around the balkans. But then my history is fairly ropey at the best of times.

A cynic might argue that another few countries to the east act as a nice buffer between the good guys and the "red menace". The only concern i have is that the "red menace" may have become a touch alarmed at how close Nato is getting.

Officer of Engineers
05 Apr 04,, 15:24
In the 80s, the 9ID was designated to be the Hight Technology Light Division of which the M8 AGS was supposed to be part of. Alot of hare brained schemes such as dune buggies armed with Gatlings and TOWS. Never mind that the Gatlings litterally shakes the dune buggies apart.

The technology wasn't there (and still isn't). Not even prototypes were developed. Just some technology demonstrators.

The HTLD was meant for SW Asia in order to meet a threat from the Soviets driving south to the Gulf. It would fared alot worst than the Stryker Bdes. Dune buggies against tanks?!?!?!?!?!

Officer of Engineers
05 Apr 04,, 20:48
Originally posted by Trooth
A cynic might argue that another few countries to the east act as a nice buffer between the good guys and the "red menace". The only concern i have is that the "red menace" may have become a touch alarmed at how close Nato is getting.

Putin already played his card and it was a crafty move. He demanded to be part of the PfP program and is working to get Russia observer status in the Planning Committee. Nothing NATO does would escape his notice.

No doubt he'll have other cards to play. The man is a modern day Bismarck.

05 Apr 04,, 23:23
"In the 80s, the 9ID was designated to be the Hight Technology Light Division of which the M8 AGS was supposed to be part of. Alot of hare brained schemes such as dune buggies armed with Gatlings and TOWS. Never mind that the Gatlings litterally shakes the dune buggies apart."

I remember that vaguely.

Never paid much attention to the plan, apparently neither did the Army, lol. ;)

Officer of Engineers
06 Apr 04,, 01:00
Originally posted by M21Sniper
Never paid much attention to the plan, apparently neither did the Army, lol. ;)

Only after the Army found out that it won't work. The M8 AGS is but one example of the enormous efforts that went into the HTLD. Fact is that everybody told them that it wouldn't work but would the REMFs listen?

I have never understood this facination with light forces. Goes all the way back to the Greeks with naked men, big shield against arm'd Roman Legionaires.

Officer of Engineers
06 Apr 04,, 05:33
:brick :brick :brick Banging my head against the wall makes more sense than seeing mistakes being repeated :brick :brick :brick

Savannah Morning News April 04, 2004
New fight. New Force
The 3rd ID leads Army reorganization efforts as soldiers move away from the traditional Cold War approach to warfare

In-Depth Coverage

By Noelle Phillips

Iraq never launched a single helicopter or jet against the 3rd Infantry Division as it marched toward Baghdad last year. Still, the division had a battalion of air defense artillery soldiers and all of the equipment that goes with it.

Instead of shooting down planes, the air defense artillery soldiers found themselves fighting like the infantry.

"The Air Force will tell you that not a single American soldier has been killed by hostile aircraft since the Korean War," said Maj. Gen. William Webster, the division commander. "It will not be a threat of the future, so we can reduce the amount of air defense in the whole Army."

The use of air defense artillery battalions is just one example of how the Army is still organized as if it were ready to fight the Soviets on a Cold War battlefield.

That outdated design is the reason behind a massive reorganization taking place within the 3rd Division.

Army officials want to shift the fighting focus away from divisions to smaller brigades. The 3rd Division is the first to undergo the changes. It will serve as the lab monkey for the Army as a whole as it reorganizes the rest of its divisions over the next three years.

The charge to reorganize came last fall when Webster took command after the war. His superiors ordered him to make the changes. He's been trying to figure out how to implement those changes since.

The goal is for the 3rd Division to have its new look before returning to Iraq, which will be sometime between November and February.

"It's pretty ambitious but feasible," Webster said.
Changing times

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has been preaching Army transformation since he took office in 2001.

Rumsfeld brought Gen. Peter Schoomaker, a former special operations commander, out of retirement to make him the Army's Chief of Staff with the order to make it happen.

It was Schoomaker who tagged the 3rd Infantry Division to become the first reorganized division within the Army.

Just home from Operation Iraqi Freedom, the 3rd Division was the Army's only major unit that wasn't at war — or on its way there.

Plus, the 3rd Division, with its armored tanks and Bradley fighting vehicles, was a classic example of the Army's use of combat forces designed to fight a Cold War battle.

The U.S. military no longer needs to prepare for a slug-fest against the Soviet Union, where there would have been clear battle lines as tanks faced off, said Marcus Corbin, senior analyst for the Center for Defense Information.

"Nobody wants to stand up and fight us anymore," Corbin said. "The U.S. Army, for all its technological advantages, is having people killed every day by gerry-rigged bombs on the side of the road."

Under the current structure, the Army is centered around divisions, which include somewhere between 16,000 to 20,000 troops.

When the military needs a mission accomplished, it sends a division even though it may be a larger force than is actually needed, said Michele Flournoy, a senior advisor with the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

As a result, unneeded people and equipment go to war.
Getting more ground fighters

What the Army needs is more soldiers on the ground in fighting roles. Troops on the ground need to be "trigger-pullers" as opposed to clerks or operators of unnecessary equipment.

The long range of an artillery canon isn't as useful when soldiers are fighting door-to-door urban combat.

Because of satellite communications and wireless technology, fewer soldiers are needed to run cables and set up antennas.

Because pay stubs and other forms are online, fewer finance clerks are needed to file paperwork.

To get there, the Army will shift soldiers out of fields such as artillery, signal and personnel.

As the division cuts back soldiers in those fields, it will transfer them to branches such as armor, infantry or military police, Webster said.

John Pike, a defense watcher who runs the Web site www.globalsecurity.org , predicts the Army will outsource many of those old jobs to private contractors such as Kellogg, Brown and Root. That company already does a majority of cooking for troops in Iraq, he said.

"The Army looked at that and said we need more people out driving Humvees instead of slinging hash in the mess halls," Pike said.
The latest lineup

It's still too early for details about how the 3rd Division will use its 17,000 soldiers.

Webster's staff continues to work on a structure for some roles such as reconnaissance and support.

What Webster does know is he will have four ground maneuver brigades and an enhanced aviation brigade that will have more than double the number of helicopters now assigned to Hunter Army Airfield.

While the four maneuver brigades won't be as large as brigades under the old system, they will have 25 percent more armor and mechanized infantry troops, meaning there will be more firepower.

All of this could add somewhere between 1,000 to 5,000 more troops at Fort Stewart and Hunter, Webster said. He's not sure where they would be located.

Hunter's runway and flight line are big enough to accommodate the additional helicopters, but there's not room for offices or additional barracks.

The new soldiers most likely will not relocate to Fort Stewart before the division returns to Iraq, Webster said.

"We're not talking about that yet because to get us ready to deploy, we don't need them to move here," he said. "We will go to Iraq with a provisional kind of 3rd ID, partially reorganized and partially with the current capabilities."
Improving troops' lives

Military experts say the Army's reorganization has as much to do with retaining troops as it does with fighting wars.

"At the end of the day, an awful lot of what they're doing is focused on retention," Pike said.

The Army is straining under the pressure of its global commitments — Iraq, Afghanistan, the Balkans and dozens of other countries. Because of those missions, soldiers are constantly deployed for long periods of time.

That means leaving families behind while soldiers live in miserable, often life-threatening conditions.

As a result, the Army fears soldiers — and their families — will opt out of the service.

In fact, Pike believes the magnitude of the reorganization reflects the magnitude of a future retention problem.

In the end, the Army hopes that a larger number of maneuver brigades means deployment schedules are more predictable and deployments less frequent, Pike said.

The Army has 33 maneuver brigades, but hopes to increase that number by 10 to 15 within the next three years.

With those 43 to 48 brigades, the Army could set up a schedule so that units know in advance when it was their turn to be deployed.

"It might — might — give us the opportunity to have a brigade remain in the U.S. longer before it goes back into combat," Webster said.
Will it work?

Time will tell how this structure works on the battlefield.

But that time will come quickly.

Already, the first reorganized unit is getting tested on a mock battlefield at Fort Irwin, Calif. Webster will spend two weeks with the unit to monitor its progress.

Most likely, changes will be made based on that unit's experience.

Others – including military officials and defense analysts – are also watching the 3rd Division, Pike said.

"We're reading tea leaves and hanging on every word," Pike said.

The 3rd Division – and the Army as a whole – has a big task on its hands.

The 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, Ky., and the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, N.Y., are next in line for the changes.

The Army, after all, has been fighting the same way for more than half a century, and it's never been known for its flexibility.

All current manuals, policies and procedures describing equipment and tactics are geared toward Cold War doctrine.

Now, they must be re-written.

"It's hard to change all of that," Pike said. "You can't just change one thing."
Transforming the 3rd ID

The 3rd Infantry Division is in the middle of a sweeping change that will bring more soldiers and helicopters to Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield. Army officials also hope the division's new look will make it a more agile fighting force while bringing more stability to soldiers' lives.

Maj. Gen. William Webster wants the new look in place by the time the division returns to Iraq, which will be sometime between Thanksgiving and February. Many details of the new organization aren't in place, but here's a look at some changes on the way:
The Soldiers

* Soldiers will be assigned to four maneuver brigades and a fifth brigade focused on aviation. Right now, there are three maneuver brigades.

* Although the new maneuver brigades will have fewer soldiers than they did under the old structure, they will have 25 percent more armor and mechanized infantry troops.

* The division will also have brigade-like units for delivering long-range fire, reconnaissance and support. Details on how those units will look have not been worked out.
The ground equipment

* The new brigades will also have a reconnaissance squadron with 31 Bradley fighting vehicles.

* There will be fewer howitzers and fewer engineering vehicles in each brigade.
The aviation equipment

* The division's Black Hawk battalion will grow to 30 helicopters from 16.

* The division will receive 12 Chinook helicopters.

* Each maneuver brigade will have 58 tanks and 58 Bradley fighting vehicles.

* There will be more armored Humvees.

* The division will have two Apache helicopter battalions with 24 Longbow choppers each. Now, the division has one Apache battalion with 18 helicopters.

* The division will receive 12 Chinook helicopters.

* Between 1,000 to 5,000 additional soldiers could be assigned to the 3rd Division.Although the new maneuver brigades will have fewer soldiers, 4,000, than they did under the old structure, they will have 25 percent more armor and mechanized infantry troops.The division will also have brigade-like units for delivering long-range fire, reconnaissance and support. Details on how those units will look have not been worked out.

06 Apr 04,, 10:28
Well you know Sir it's very important to get yourself properly prepared to fight the LAST war, right?

People never learn because they're stupid, and REMFs and politicians are at the head of the line.

07 Apr 04,, 03:42
well as fitting that Rumsfield is at the top of the pecking order. Donald Rumsfield the Quack.

Guys, help me out with the nicknames for Rumsfield. It would be fun to give him a humorous nickname which we can use to mock him.

07 Apr 04,, 05:26
Idiot works for me.

I've heard 'RumNamara' tossed around before though...lol.

Officer of Engineers
13 Apr 04,, 03:48
:brick :brick :brick Beautiful. Just Beautiful! :brick :brick :brick

Instead of three maneuver battalions, now there will be only two in the UA. The UAs will be modular - each with one infantry battalion and one armored battalion.

As it restructured, the brigade lost a battalion of armor, and that means 44 fewer M-1 Abrams tanks. But a cavalry squadron was added to the UA, and it will eventually become a reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition squadron, or RSTA. It will replace the brigade reconnaissance troop with more than three times the force.

The1/9th Field Artillery is also permanently assigned, minus a battery of Paladins that used to support the BCT. The brigade also lost a battery of air defense artillery as it transitioned to a UA.

Army Changes From Divisions to Brigade Units of Action

(Source: US Army; issued April 5, 2004)

FORT MONROE, Va. --- As the Army continues to change everything from uniforms to weapons to the way we fight war, the deployment and assignment process for soldiers remained the same: all combat soldiers deploy as part of a division. That is, until now.

As part of Army focus area “modularity,” the nation’s oldest armed service has decided to change its deployment unit of choice from the large and powerful division to the smaller-sized brigade unit of action, or BUA.

These brigades, which are expected to pack more firepower than the current divisions, will be staffed based on whatever the particular mission dictates. According to Maj. Gen. Robert W. Mixon, deputy director of the Futures Center at Fort Monroe, the switch to BUAs will provide more flexibility for the combatant commander.

“We’re making the brigades the Army’s units of action because the divisions are, like the chief (Army Chief of Staff Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker) said, $100 bills,” Mixon explained. “If you want the capabilities that are resident in land forces for the Army piece of it, you have to break a $100 bill.

“(The chief) wants $20 bills, where you can get what you need without breaking a $100,” he added. “The modular BUAs will give you that $20-bill capability. You have all the resident capabilities that are in a division inside the brigade. In a smaller package, but you’ve still got it so you can spend that $20 bill when you need it.”

Mixon pointed out that sometimes the combatant commander may not need a larger force, but when he does, the BUA can easily be increased to get the necessary firepower and capabilities. “We’re not losing anything in the deal,” he said. “We’re getting the same value, but we’re getting it more flexible, more tailorable in that modular construct of packages that really makes our Army more relevant. The way it is set up, you get what you need when you need it.”

Mixon explained that BUAs will feature intelligence, Joint fires, special operations and human intelligence. A number of capabilities will be inside the brigade that current units don’t have right now unless they’re plugged in or added on. BUAs will also have more access to capabilities, including reconnaissance. Mixon said every brigade will now have a reconnaissance squadron.

“They’ll go find out what you need. Before you commit the entire brigade to a fight, you can develop the situation,” Mixon said.

The current Army division features three maneuver brigades, but under focus area “modularity,” that number will change to four. According to Mixon, initial modular conversions are currently taking place with 3rd Infantry Division. The 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) at Fort Campbell, Ky., and the 10th Mountain Division, headquartered at Fort Drum, N.Y., will also add BUAs this year.

“It starts this year with the 3rd Infantry Division, 101st, 10th Mountain,” Mixon said. “It continues with the whole Army in the next three years, and probably a little bit beyond, to get all the Guard and Reserve units done, but it’s underway, it’s happening.

“Reorganizing the brigade combat teams in each of the divisions to BUAs is a critical and key step in making the Army more modular, flexible and relevant to the combatant commander,” Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston said. “The BUAs will be smaller but more capable than their predecessors, the BCTs. The plan now is to grow the active Army from 33 BCTs to initially 43 BUAs, and then potentially to 48 BUAs.”

Preston explained that the benefits from establishing BUAs over a lifecycle are stability for the organization throughout a deployment and predictability for soldiers and families.

“Soldiers assigned to a 36-month lifecycle BUA knows they and their family will remain in place at their homebase throughout the lifecycle,” he said. “The BUA may deploy for a contingency operation like Operation Iraqi Freedom, Kuwait, etc., for 18 months during the lifecycle. The unit and all the soldiers would return back to their homebase immediately following the deployment.”

He said at the conclusion of the lifecycle, soldiers and leaders assigned to the BUA would have the opportunity to fulfill follow-on assignment opportunities. Some may include re-enlistment incentives; a permanent-change-of-station move to attend school; or assignment opportunities as drill sergeants and recruiters. Others who stay at their homebase would move into authorized positions for their grade and occupational specialty in the same or a new BUA. This move would initiate the start of another BUA lifecycle.

Preston said it is possible a Soldier could spend six to seven years on the same installation. “For a newly assigned Soldier coming in the Army who re-enlisted or extended during their initial duty assignment, they could see themselves leaving this first duty station as a senior sergeant or staff sergeant,” he said. “Newly assigned lieutenants could see themselves leaving after six years to attend the captains career course.

“The good news for these soldiers and their families is stability and predictability,” Preston added. “Soldiers would not have to worry about packing up the family every three years to move to a new duty station. Children could remain stabilized in the same schools, families in the same neighborhoods, and spouses in the same jobs and career fields in the local areas.”

US Army Field-Tests New Brigade Unit

(Source: US Army; web-posted Apr. 7, 2004)

FORT IRWIN, Calif. --- How can fewer tanks, fewer Bradleys and fewer howitzers add up to a more lethal unit? That’s what the Army’s first “unit of action” set out to prove at the National Training Center March 26 to April 10.

In the first field test of the new brigade structure, the 2nd UA of the 3rd Infantry Division is also training to return to Iraq. This time last year, many of the Soldiers were charging their armored vehicles victoriously into Baghdad as the 2nd Brigade Combat Team of the 3rd ID.

One difference between the BCT and the new unit of action is the addition of assets that previously belonged to the division. Field artillery, signal, chemical and engineer units that once supported the brigade are now permanently assigned to the UA. Capabilities such as counter-intelligence, human intelligence, and electronic warfare have been moved down to the UA.

“This organization has injected a lot more efficiencies with us and that makes us a lot more combat effective than what we were,” said Col. Joseph DiSalvo, 2nd UA commander. “And we were pretty damn combat effective before the reorganization.”

Restructuring as a UA brought about a significant change in task organization, DiSalvo said.

Instead of three maneuver battalions, now there will be only two in the UA. The UAs will be modular - each with one infantry battalion and one armored battalion.

As it restructured, the brigade lost a battalion of armor, and that means 44 fewer M-1 Abrams tanks. But a cavalry squadron was added to the UA, and it will eventually become a reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition squadron, or RSTA. It will replace the brigade reconnaissance troop with more than three times the force.

The1/9th Field Artillery is also permanently assigned, minus a battery of Paladins that used to support the BCT. The brigade also lost a battery of air defense artillery as it transitioned to a UA.

In the brigade support area, the 26th Forward Support Battalion and elements of the 10th Engineer Battalion are also now assigned to the UA. In the past, the FSB and engineers supported the brigade in combat, but now they’re permanent UA assets.

“With people staying here and working here for an extended period of time, you get a good team, a really good team going,” said Staff Sgt. Kirk Hill, a communications NCO with the 26th FSB. “Continuity-wise, I know how the other guy works and he knows how I work.”

It all adds up to a more self-sufficient and cohesive team, according to a division operations officer. He said UA commanders should have more flexibility and the capability to maneuver elements faster.

A signal company and military intelligence company is also part of the UA. A four-person public affairs section will be part of the UA, and the headquarters will be beefed up by a total of 58 additional personnel.

DiSalvo said the indirect fires of the field artillery combined with intelligence assets make the UA more lethal.

“With these assets, there’s a better chance we’ll collect the information,” DiSalvo said, adding that new equipment such as unmanned aerial vehicles, sensors and communications suites will be fielded with UAs in the future, to further improve combat effectiveness.

As for now, DiSalvo and the UA are focused on Iraq. “This is part of our training for OIF-3” he said. “We can’t squander it, we only get 14 days.”

Army officials announced last month that a newly restructured 3rd Infantry Division would return to Iraq for the next rotation, possibly as early as November.

13 Apr 04,, 04:53
Originally posted by M21Sniper
Well you know Sir it's very important to get yourself properly prepared to fight the LAST war, right?

People never learn because they're stupid, and REMFs and politicians are at the head of the line.

Isnt that applicable for all Armies in the world!:doh!

13 Apr 04,, 21:20
LOL, probably a safe bet Ray. ;)