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Thread: French troops arrive in Mali to stem rebel advance

  1. #46
    Senior Contributor Mihais's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Albany Rifles View Post
    Mihais,

    I take no insult from your assessment of US capabilities. I happen to agree with you on to a large degree. JSOC is hammer that sees every issue as a nail. That US analysts got soemthing wrong about Africa is not the least bit surprising....Africa is not the strong suit of the US. Heck its not even our our weak suit.

    All of that went into my comment as to why I wanted to see French forces engaged.

    And you are right....we certainly can place a lot of emphasis on support. Not to mention if they find a taget needing it nothing says a DDG or an SSN couldnt drop a few Tomahawks in places where needed. No US lives at risk. But mostly it will be shared intel, logisitcs and tankers.
    Sir,if only my ex-GF would appreciate blunt honesty

    Don't know about JSOC.The operators seem to be head and shoulders above those supposed to be in the know.It's pattern noticed in A-stan as well.The rest,starting with your intel agencies and diplomats are less impressive.
    The thing is you don't actually need a super-dooper study of whatever university to find out basic stuff.You only need to talk to people.You smile nice,you haggle over the price of whatever crap you're buying.You say ''thank you''in their language(you can learn basic phrases while flying from conversation guide).You drink a coffee,ask a simple question(e.g ,''pardon me for asking,but you seem such a nice person.I think somebody stole my X.Do you think it's worth to go to police?'') .You'll get a litany over what folks think of the police.A small crowd will gather and you'll see them nod in approval.They absolutely hated the police.
    Do that in a dozen towns and 2 dozens shops and cafeterias and you pretty much have a poll.

    Your SF folks actually walk the ground and talk to people.The rest just sits on their butts and type some bogus report.They don't know the language,don't like the people,don't show respect for their ways(you don't have to respect them, pretending is enough).Here comes the mighty general,commander of AFRICOM saying ''it's unaccepatble units trained by US switch sides''.No sh!t,General,sir.

    Sorry,for the rant.
    Those who know don't speak
    He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. Luke 22:36

  2. #47
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    That wouldn't be SF here (in Germany). That would be field intelligence, which is nowadays part of every regular recce unit.

  3. #48
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    9e BIMa is taking over command in Mali (together with EMF3), also deploying a light armour battlegroup to Mali, RICM with probably one company AMX-10RCR as well as recce and infantry companies with VBL and VAB and some support units including mortars.

    Attachment 31672

  4. #49
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    Deployed
    • 9 BLBMa : brigade-level tactical headquarter
    • 21 RIMa : battlegroup tactical headquarter ("21e GTIA")
    • 21 RIMa : one company (motorized infantry, ca 15 VAB, some VBL)
    • 3 RPIMa : one company (motorized infantry, ca 15 VAB, some VBL)
    • 1 RHP : one company (12 ERC-90 Sagaie, 12 VBL, some VAB)
    • 2 RIMa : one Guepard company battlegroup (truck-mounted infantry, 4 ERC-90 Sagaie)
    • 11 RAMa : one company (6 heavy towed mortars) (?)
    • 6 RG : one company (engineers) (?)
    • 12 RGP : one platoon (engineers) (?)
    • 1 REC : one platoon (foreign legion)
    • 1 RPIMA : 200 men (special forces)

    • 4 RHFS : 2 Gazelle (with small arms damage)
    • 5 RHC : 2 Tiger (possibly 3)
    • 5 RHC : 8 Gazelle
    • 5 RHC : 4 Cougar
    • Bamako, Mali : 2 Mirage F1CR (recce, CAS QRA)

    Offsite Assets
    • Dakar, Senegal : division-level tactic-strategic headquarter (EMF3)
    • Dakar, Senegal : 5 Breguet Atlantique ATL2 (SIGINT, airborne coordination)
    • N'Djamena, Chad : 5 KC-135 (tanker aircraft)
    • N'Djamena, Chad : 6 Mirage 2000D (multirole)
    • N'Djamena, Chad : 3 Rafale B, 1 Rafale C (multirole)
    • Niamey, Niger : 2 Harfang (MALE UAV)

    Space Assets
    • Helios-2A (military, optical/IR, resolution 30cm)
    • Helios-2B (military, optical/IR, resolution 30cm)
    • Pleiades-HR1A (dual use, optical, resolution 50cm)
    • Pleiades-HR1B (dual use, optical, resolution 50cm)
    • FSLGS (access to five German SAR-LUPE military radar reconnaissance sats, resolution "under one meter")
    • Orfeo (access to four Italian COSMO-SkyMed dual-use radar reconnaissance sats, resolution "one meter")

    En-route
    • RICM : one squadron (12 AMX-10RC, 12 VBL, various VAB)
    • 92 RI : two companies (mechanized infantry, ca 25 VBCI)
    • 126 RI : one company (motorized infantry, ca 15 VAB)
    • 68 RA : one battery (6 CAESAR truck-mounted 155mm howitzers)
    • 2 REP : 200 men (foreign legion)
    • 7 RMAT : 150 men (supply/support)
    • 511 RT : 100 men (supply/support)

    All except 2e REP aboard BPC Dixmude enroute to Abidjan, Ivory Coast, where France retains a presence with about 200 men left of Force Licorne, mostly support. These forces formally form a second GTIA (battalion battlegroup) in addition to "21e GTIA" already deployed.

    France keeps a third GTIA in continuous readiness for deployment consisting of roughly three mechanized infantry companies and a tank company with Leclercs plus an artillery battery in case things really get hot.


    Interestingly Pleiades-HR1B was launched just in time to be ready for this about four weeks ago. Original planned launch date would have been in March. It reached its target orbit exactly one week before France launched its foray into Mali.

    Transport assets not listed above. These would include outside French assets at least two British and one Canadian C-17, several SALIS An-124 and several others.
    Last edited by kato; 25 Jan 13, at 19:09.

  5. #50

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    Go get 'em France.
    "This aggression will not stand, man!" Jeff Lebowski
    "The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you're uncool." Lester Bangs

  6. #51
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    P.S.:
    Another GTIA is permanently stationed in Dakar. 23e GTIA consisting of 23e BIMa with command segment, one fire support/recon company with Sagaies and one infantry company in VLRA trucks.

    Effectively, forces in Mali consist of one battlegroup (three infantry companies, one Sagaie company) plus a reinforced engineer company as support and about 200-250 men special forces. Another similar-sized force is en-route right now.

  7. #52
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    2e REP pulled a combat jump north of Timbuktu last night. 200 men and supplies jumping from 2 C-130 and 3 C-160.

    Dixmude has docked in Dakar and is unloading her battlegroup there right now.

  8. #53
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kato View Post

    All except 2e REP aboard BPC Dixmude enroute to Abidjan, Ivory Coast,
    I think you've made a mistake there Kato. Google keeps telling me that is a ship of some sort. Looks to big to make it up the Niger.


    Win nervously lose tragically - Reds C C

  9. #54
    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    I think you've made a mistake there Kato. Google keeps telling me that is a ship of some sort. Looks to big to make it up the Niger.
    I think he made it clear in the following post...

    Dixmude has docked in Dakar and is unloading her battlegroup there right now.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

  10. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigfella View Post
    I think you've made a mistake there Kato. Google keeps telling me that is a ship of some sort. Looks to big to make it up the Niger.
    Dixmude is a Mistral-class batiment de projection et commandement (BPC, projection and command ship aka LHD). The ship was loaded at - afaik - Toulon and sailed down the Western African coast. Original planned unloading was apparently at Abidjan (Ivory Coast), but they're now unloading at Dakar (Senegal).

  11. #56
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    Mihais,


    Sir,if only my ex-GF would appreciate blunt honesty

    Same with my ex-wife.

    There are a lot of things the US military is good at....what you mentioned aint neccessarily one of them. Its not within our doctrine or normal scope of operations.

    Now we might need to rethink a lot of that and change scope and mission but for the most part we are a conventional force in the Army. A SOC/MEU has better internal capability than an Army BCT.
    “Loyalty to country ALWAYS. Loyalty to government, when it deserves it.”
    Mark Twain

  12. #57
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    i have to say, the speed of the advance is quite impressive.

    recall the intervention began on 11 Jan with the Islamist seizure of Konna. 14 Jan Islamists take Diably.

    roughly a week later (18 and 21 Jan, respectively) Konna and Diably fall again.

    today we have news that French special forces backed by the African intervention force have retaken Gao, considerably to the east, and French paratroopers have secured the airport/access roads to Timbuktu, to the north, and surrounded the city.

    it took the French one day from securing the airport at Gao to taking control of the whole city itself, with relatively little fighting. the next announced target is kidal, way to the northeast, and airstrikes there have already begun.

    meanwhile the islamists torched the library at Timbuktu in a spiteful little act of vengeance.

    for some reason this feels like October 2001...
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  13. #58
    Senior Contributor Bigfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kato View Post
    Dixmude is a Mistral-class batiment de projection et commandement (BPC, projection and command ship aka LHD). The ship was loaded at - afaik - Toulon and sailed down the Western African coast. Original planned unloading was apparently at Abidjan (Ivory Coast), but they're now unloading at Dakar (Senegal).
    Sooo.... when you wrote this you were just being a smart arse.

    Quote Originally Posted by kato View Post
    If they can sail up the Niger delta, sure...
    And when you wrote this you lacked the foresight to consider that heavy equipment & supplies might be moved by ship (which was what I was thinking about when I mentioned shipping).

    Quote Originally Posted by kato View Post
    Sooo... tell me all about that port you want to use. You even get the choice between four or five somewhat usable ones. All in countries that make Pakistan and the Southern Afghanistan Route look politically stable.

    Look, there's a reason why France uses air transport and forward basing in this theater. Or why UNHCR is planning for the same in its contingency plans for Mali.
    Next time you want to act all superior at least make sure you are correct. You will look like (slightly) less of a d1ck.

    ....we will now resume our regularly scheduled program....


    Win nervously lose tragically - Reds C C

  14. #59
    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    BF,

    I can see why you are reacting like this, being corrected by a witty comment before.

    If you were more clear about the shipping, none of this would happened.

    In kato's defense, there are still no ships in Mali

    Can we go on now, asty made me curious with October 2001 remark.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

  15. #60
    Senior Contributor Mihais's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doktor View Post
    Can we go on now, asty made me curious with October 2001 remark.
    Meaning how a few of our lads send the jihadists to a better world.Fast,decisive and in a far away land.

    However it's nothing new for the French African wars since about the times of Bugeaud.What will not repeat is another decade and a half of ''nation building'' in Mali.Some common sense stuff excluded.

    We'll see a pattern developing.A series of campaigns in Africa and wherever there is a need.But not protracted campaigns.We'll support ''our'' tribe to kill common foes,send our men where needed and get out quickly.
    Those who know don't speak
    He said to them, "But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don't have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. Luke 22:36

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