Author Topic: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation & exploring other new regimental systems  (Read 119383 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Yard Ape

  • Guest
I think we should replace all of our regular force brigades with regiments.  As part of this change, regiments will incorporate both manouvre arms (infantry & cavalry).  As with the existing infantry & armoured regiments, only those personnel of the manouver arm will wear the cap badge while everyone else will have thier respective battalion slip-on & the brigade patch will be replaced by a regimental patch.

Those who have followed my posts will know that I feel a fourth brigade is required to fix ATOF and/or meet our operational needs.  My regimental formation proposal will reflect that.

I propose that the standard building block of these formations be the mechanized battalion.  Each battalion would have three rifle companies, a recce/surveilance company, an MGS Company, and a combat support company (Pioneer, Mortar, TOW).

Each formation would still have four manouver units.  While I am showing manouver units as being identical & in line with the army's intention to go without tanks, the proposal has much more flexibility.  A regiment could be designated as heavy & have a tank Bn (with 1 rifle coy & 3 tank Coy) or heavy mech (with 2 rifle coy & 2 tank coy).  Other combinations are equally possible.

The formations of our army would be as follows:

RCR
Regt HQ & Sigs
1 RCR (Mech Bn)
2 RCR (Mech Bn)
3 RCR (Mech Bn)
4 RCR (Mech Bn)
6 RCR (Cbt Engr Bn)
7 RCR (Fd Amb)
8 RCR (Svc Bn)

PPCLI
Regt HQ & Sigs
1 PPCLI (Mech Bn)
2 PPCLI (Mech Bn)
3 PPCLI (Mech Bn)
4 PPCLI (Mech Bn)
6 PPCLI (Cbt Engr Bn)
7 PPCLI (Fd Amb)
8 PPCLI (Svc Bn)

R22eR
Regt HQ & Sigs
1 R22eR (Mech Bn)
2 R22eR (Mech Bn)
3 R22eR (Mech Bn)
4 R22eR (Mech Bn)
6 R22eR (Cbt Engr Bn)
7 R22eR (Fd Amb)
8 R22eR (Svc Bn)

1 Canadian Light Brigade Group
Bde HQ & Sigs
1 Cdn Para Bn (Airborne)
5 PPCLI (Light Bn)
5 RCR (Light Bn)
5 R22eR (Light Bn)
1 Cbt Engr Bn
1 Fd Amb
1 Svc Bn

RCHA
Bde HQ & Sigs [located in Shilo]
1 RCHA [located with 1 CLBG]
2 RCHA [located with RCR]
3 RCHA [located with PPCLI]
4 RCHA [located with R22eR]

RKC73

  • Guest
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2004, 10:17:32 »
YardApe,

Where are the troops going to come from?  16 Battalions? Really?  Also, why does everyone in Canada think Mech forces are the best defence for a country surounded by three oceans, an Arctic, mountains, thousands of lakes and waterways and massive forests.  There are three provinces in the centre of the country where they may be of use.  I know that Saskatchewan is a tempting target, but really, couldn't we see the Army focusing on other things?

I am not saying to ignore the capability completely - but four Bdes of Mech?  What about developing the Army's woeful Airmobile capabilities, or better yet looking at amphibious capabilities which would allow the Army to move it's own troops, vehicles and equipment?

Light forces are actually in much higher demand historically - because they are relatively cheap and easier to deploy, the last two Gulf Wars notwithstanding.  Apart from WW1, WW2 and Korea (where dismounted troops were the norm) most of the 20th Century saw brushfire wars where light forces reigned supreme.  Glad to see you brought back 1 Can Para though - well done.


Offline Michael Dorosh

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • -1,245
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 4,763
  • Verloren ist nur, wer sich selbst aufgibt!
    • CANUCK
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2004, 10:29:12 »
Where are the vehicles going to come from?

I think this order of battle was simply cut and pasted from some Australian web site, no?
"So, how's your sister?" -Brigadeführer Hermann Fegelein
 
http://www.canadiansoldiers.com
 http://www.calgaryhighlanders.com

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 219,975
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,087
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2004, 13:16:05 »
How about trying this one on for size.  The game plan is to try to make best use of forces available, within the numbers available, maintain regimental focus, supply a national defence main effort with significant capability to deploy forces overseas under three conditions, immediate reaction (light), warfighting (medium/heavy), sustained garrisons (peace-support)


3 Brigades (1,2 and 5 CBGs), each composed of two light battle groups optimized for peace-support/domestic security tasks.  â Å“Garrisonâ ? forces.

These battle-groups composed of 3 light infantry rifle companies, an engineer squadron, a large lt armd squadron of LAVIIIs and/or Coyotes for patrol and reaction forces with MGS and TUA troop or troops, a lt arty bty of 105s and 81s and a surveillance/mapping/obs bty.  Complete with medical support, fwd and rear logistic support and transport.  Configured to deploy easily on 1 or 2 JSS or equivalent vessels.

These would be infantry battle groups with an attached squadron of armd types (eg 1PPCLI + D LdSH and 2 PPCLI + E LdSh)


1 Brigade (4 CBG) configured around the Cavalry Regiments.

Three Regimental Groups with 1 Squadron MGS/TUA/MMEV and 2/3 Squadrons with LAVIII /MGS/TUA plus 2 attached companies of infantry (pys could be reconfigured to fill 3 coy/sqns at reduced manning levels).

1 Recce Squadron

1 Arty Regiment with 3 CS Btys, 1 GS Bty and 1 Obsn and Fire Control Bty.

1 Engr Regiment to include field, plant and armd sqns.

Necessary support.


Finally

1 Airborne Regiment of 3 rifle coys, 1 Long Range Patrol coy, 1 Eng sqn and 1 Lt Bty .

LRP Coy to include both wheeled and dismounted capabilities. Rifle coys to be independently deployable.





The Cavalry Brigade would prepare for mobile warfare.  Full Stop. They would likely find employment in counter-insurgency efforts gone bad or in allied war-fighting coalitions.


The Airborne Regiment would prepare rapid reaction in Canada AND Internationally.  Aircraft necessary.  DFAIT missions,  Evacuation of Nationals, Insertion of DART Team into a Hostile Environment (Sudan).


The â Å“Garrisonâ ? Forces would spend most of their life in Canada but could support one Afghanistan type mission indefinitely and an additional mission for one or two rotos.

These â Å“Garrisonsâ ? would train to supply security in hostile environments.  Part of their mission and structure would be to interact and train with local forces.

They could practice these skills at home with the militia, rangers and domestic police, fire and health agencies. 

To this end, of the 6 available battle groups, 4 would be assigned to the 4 areas, one would be on deployment overseas and one would be in reserve/training.

The 4 area assigned groups, manned at various levels of readiness (personnel of leave or courses) would be tasked with supplying training personnel to work with the 9 or 10 Militia Groups and the 5 Ranger Groups.

Rangers would continue doing what they do, (presence).  Militia would train for Vital Point Security and Urban Conflict as well as supplying Engineering, Transport and Communications support to Civil Powers during civil emergencies.

Area Commanders would therefore have under command 1-2 Ranger Groups for Long Range Patrols domestically, 2-3 Light Infantry Militia Groups of about 1500 personnel for domestic security tasks, 1 Reg Force "Garrison" element capable of responding to armed incidents and also passing along lessons learned.

The Federal Government would have available 2 peace-support "Garrisons", one deployed, one in reserve,  as well as  a rapid intervention force (airborne) with a large element of Green "SF" types in the LRP coy and finally a useable/deployable force capable of supplying a valuable contribution to our allies in a High Intensity conflict - maybe not in the main effort but perhaps on flanks or even forward screen/recce.


Howzat?? ;D

Cheers.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

ignoramus et ignorabimus

Offline Sheep Dog AT

  • The Fly in Someone's Ointment - Giggity
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 58,120
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,219
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2004, 14:35:16 »
It is harder to train light forces in a mech role then vice versa IMO.

P.S.   Aren't we the last western army to still practice section attacks, ie vehicle does battle run, "DISMOUNT, DISMOUNT, DISMOUNT"

I would also add that instead of using existing regiments you might consider new regiments or previously disbanded ones such as the Black Watch.  That way those that fill these new BN that are taken out of there former unit will not fell disenfranchised.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2004, 14:39:34 by CFL »
Apparently infamous for his one liners.
Oh Giggity Well...........Giggity

Offline Sheep Dog AT

  • The Fly in Someone's Ointment - Giggity
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 58,120
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 10,219
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2004, 14:35:58 »
Perhaps your thoughts should be put to paper and sent up the chain (if it hasn't happened already).
Apparently infamous for his one liners.
Oh Giggity Well...........Giggity

Yard Ape

  • Guest
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2004, 09:07:32 »
16 Battalions? Really?
  ATOF is based on 12 manouvre units.  I have only added 4.

Where are the troops going to come from?
  Liberals promised them.  They'd better start sewing.

Where are the vehicles going to come from?
Fleet Managment (until we get a wiser government)

I think this order of battle was simply cut and pasted from some Australian web site, no?
It is on no Ausie site that I know of.

3 x Brigades (1,2 and 5 CBGs), each composed of two light battle groups optimized for peace-support/domestic security tasks.  â Å“Garrisonâ ? forces.

1 x Brigade (4 CBG) configured around the Cavalry Regiments.


1 x Airborne Regiment
I suggest using the regiment as a formation as it will eliminate inter-regimental rivalry as a source of friction. 

Offline Ex-Dragoon

  • Army.ca Fixture
  • *****
  • 46,332
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 9,002
  • dealing with life not that active here anymore
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2004, 10:10:48 »
Don't you think disbanding the armoured regiments and making the crewmen rebadge to infantry would not cause problems as well?
I will leave your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your carcasses. I will water the land with what flows from you, and the river beds shall be filled with your blood. When I snuff you out I will cover the heavens and all the stars will darken. Ezekiel 32:5-7
Tradition- Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid
Former RCN Sailor now Retired

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 219,975
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,087
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2004, 15:26:37 »
Quote from: Yard Ape, Today at 09:07:32
Quote
Quote from: Kirkhill on Yesterday at 13:16:05
3 x Brigades (1,2 and 5 CBGs), each composed of two light battle groups optimized for peace-support/domestic security tasks.  â Å“Garrisonâ ? forces.

1 x Brigade (4 CBG) configured around the Cavalry Regiments.


1 x Airborne Regiment
I suggest using the regiment as a formation as it will eliminate inter-regimental rivalry as a source of friction.

Quote from: Ex-Dragoon, Today at 10:10:48
Quote
Don't you think disbanding the armoured regiments and making the crewmen rebadge to infantry would not cause problems as well?

Can't we have our cake and eat it too?

Have 1,2 and 5 Brigades configured to supply 2 Regimental Combat Teams (1/2 PPCLI, 1/2 RCR, 1/2 R22R with permanent armoured attachments) and have the Cavalry Brigade form from 3 Regiments (LdSh, RCD, 12RBC with permanent infantry attachments)

Like Ex-Dragoon, I too think that eliminating the Armoured Regiments' titles may be asking for too large a pill to be swallowed.

Besides, I like tradition and it is pretty hard to buy it or concoct it.

Cheers.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

ignoramus et ignorabimus

Offline Michael Dorosh

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • -1,245
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 4,763
  • Verloren ist nur, wer sich selbst aufgibt!
    • CANUCK
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2004, 00:35:13 »
Quote

Besides, I like tradition and it is pretty hard to buy it or concoct it.

Cheers.

Ever heard of the Canadian Expeditionary Force?  Do you think 260 seperate battalions really all  perpetuated pre-war infantry regiments?  You had all kinds of regimental traditions, just add water, in a very short time - cap badges and all.  Concocted?  You bet your ***.

Ever heard of Hamilton Gault?  Seems to me he paid for an entire regiment out of thin air (was the last one to do that, incidentally, but the point is, it was done, and hey - someone in this thread is even advocating that they be one of just four infantry regiments in Canada).

I don't agree that we should do it, but take a look at the CEF and tell me half the units didn't pull traditions out of their asses.  The Tenth Battalion certainly did, and won more glory for itself than just about anyone.  Not to mention 60 MMs in a single battle, at Hill 70.  Not bad for a unit with no history and no name other than "Tenth Canadians."
"So, how's your sister?" -Brigadeführer Hermann Fegelein
 
http://www.canadiansoldiers.com
 http://www.calgaryhighlanders.com

Offline Chris Pook

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Legend
  • *
  • 219,975
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,087
  • Wha daur say Mass in ma lug!
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2004, 03:51:31 »
You would have to bring up "The Fighting Tenth". ;)

Fair Comment Michael.  However now that we have those traditions isn't there advantage to nurturing them?

As I said I like tradition.  For me it supplies something of an anchor, a steadying influence.  A sense that whatever is happening today people just like us have gone through it all before and have survived it.

I think that is worth something.
"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

"If change isn’t allowed to be a process, it becomes an event." - Penny Mordaunt 10/10/2019

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards” ~ Soren Kierkegaard

ignoramus et ignorabimus

Offline Spr.Earl

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 205
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 3,717
  • Grizzled Old Veteran
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2004, 04:41:44 »
Tradition and history makes for co-hesion and moral.
THE PRECEDING POST AND OTHERS MADE BY MYSELF ARE MY PERSONAL VIEWS, NOT FOR REPRODUCTION, NOT FOR CUT AND PASTE OF ANY PORTION THEREOF, NO QUOTES ARE PERMITTED ELSEWHERE,ANYWHERE OTHER THAN EXCLUSIVELY IN THIS WEB FORUM.




UBIQUE
Be Safe

Offline Michael Dorosh

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • -1,245
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 4,763
  • Verloren ist nur, wer sich selbst aufgibt!
    • CANUCK
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2004, 10:21:08 »
You would have to bring up "The Fighting Tenth". ;)

Fair Comment Michael.  However now that we have those traditions isn't there advantage to nurturing them?

As I said I like tradition.  For me it supplies something of an anchor, a steadying influence.  A sense that whatever is happening today people just like us have gone through it all before and have survived it.

I think that is worth something.

I agree completely, but in order for us to preserve it, we need to better identify reasons why we should do so.  And those reasons need to be acceptable not to us, but to the majority of civilians in this country, who are the ones who really make the decisions.
"So, how's your sister?" -Brigadeführer Hermann Fegelein
 
http://www.canadiansoldiers.com
 http://www.calgaryhighlanders.com

Offline AmmoTech90

  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *
  • 52,625
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,156
    • Catching Bullets
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2004, 12:43:01 »
There is an interesting submission to the new Canadian Army Journal that suggests something similiar to this, but takes it a bit further.  The author suggests splitting the Army into basically field and non-field branches, never the two to meet.
There is an equally interesting rebuttal to the article further on in the journal.
I know the Army Electronic Library is available through the internet but I'm not sure of the address.  I'm sure its available through this website's wonderful search feature.
Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabris, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam.

The fragrance of Afghanistan
Rewards a long day's toil
A Passage to Bangkok- Rush

Offline Gunner

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 6,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,836
  • Artillery Forum Moderator
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2004, 12:57:41 »
The Canadian Army Journal can be found at:

http://armyapp.dnd.ca/ael/adtb/vol_7/CAJ_vol7.1_e.pdf
Had a wonderful ~26 years in the military and still miss it.

Yard Ape

  • Guest
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2004, 12:14:38 »
Don't you think disbanding the armoured regiments and making the crewmen rebadge to infantry would not cause problems as well?
I had thought on this.  One option is for the PPCLI to be the light formation and keep the RCD as the third mech formation.

12 RBC exists in the reserves, so it would not be lost if it left the regular order of battle.  Unfortunattly, I cannot find a place for the LdSH.

Offline MCG

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 214,345
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 11,885
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #16 on: August 05, 2004, 21:27:48 »
I suggest using the regiment as a formation as it will eliminate inter-regimental rivalry as a source of friction.
You may eliminate rivalry within the formation, but is it likely to become more competative between regimental "mafias" at the Army level?

Offline Infanteer

  • Directing Staff
  • Army.ca Myth
  • *
  • 209,245
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 15,752
  • Honey Badger FTW!
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #17 on: August 05, 2004, 22:27:38 »
I don't think you could ever get beyond "regimental mafias"; it seems to be the price you pay for building around a unit affiliation.  We can only rely on professionalism to work against regimental patronage.  An example would be the Airborne Regiment CO in Somalia; Col Kenward was deemed to be the best choice to take over the Regiment, however, the Vandoo Colonel got the job because it was the Vandoo's "turn" at assuming command of the unit.  In this case regimental patronage won over professionalism, the bedrock of our profession, and the CF as a whole ended up wearing it.

I agree fully with Yard Ape in most respects; my idea on the matter is to move Regimental Affilation from being branch related to being formaton related.  For example, all soldiers within 1 CMBG would be PPCLI, regardless of trade.  Perhaps any Light Infantry formation can be drawn from the Infantry Corps while a mechanized or armoured formation would draw its names from the current Armoured Corps.

As someone mentioned earlier, it might be expedient to use regiments besides the ones that exist now in order to prevent any accusations of favoritism.  In fact, as Michael mentions, we could probably name our Regiments after a numbered regiment (ie: 1st Regiment, 2nd Regiment, etc).  It makes no difference if a regiment is named or numbered, the US Marine Corps possess many illustrious number regiments (heck, we have R22R, 8CH, and 48Highlanders).

The crux of a Regimental system is how it manages both individual career patterns and unit manning in order to build stronger cohesion and how this system fits into your doctrine and organization.
"Overall it appears that much of the apparent complexity of modern war stems in practice from the self-imposed complexity of modern HQs" LCol J.P. Storr

Offline pbi

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 52,710
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 3,961
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2004, 10:37:33 »
Yard Ape: the concept and ORBAT you propose has some strong similarities to the USMC. In the Marines there are not really separate "branches" as we know them, although separate MOCs exist. All Marine battalions are (usually) part of a numbered Marine Regiment, but all Marines are just that: Marines. There is one cap badge and one USMC heritage (of which Marines are very aware and fiercely proud), although the subordinate regiments and battalions are aware of their own individual battle honours and histories, there is none of the divisiveness we experience in our tiny army with numerous branches and corps competing with each other. There are exceptions to this system, such as USMC aviation units and some special organizations, but in general they follow this structure in a Marine Corps of four divisions (three Active, one Reserve). Cheers. (And keep on thinking...!!)
The Nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools. ...

The true measure of a man is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out...

Offline Michael Dorosh

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • -1,245
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 4,763
  • Verloren ist nur, wer sich selbst aufgibt!
    • CANUCK
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2004, 12:22:26 »
But if there is a perceived problem with the way the regiments are doing business now, and if renaming them (or simply numbering them) isn't going to "make a difference" - then why would we think renaming them would change the problems, either?
"So, how's your sister?" -Brigadeführer Hermann Fegelein
 
http://www.canadiansoldiers.com
 http://www.calgaryhighlanders.com

Yard Ape

  • Guest
Re: Adopting the regiment as a regular force formation.
« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2004, 03:51:07 »
Yard Ape: the concept and ORBAT you propose has some strong similarities to the USMC.
The similarities were not intentional, but are typically pointed out when I talk about this with others.  I would suggest that the USMC in many ways is like a regiment (though very large).  To those who suggest a single pan-Canadian regiment, I would like to know if they think the USMC would be as proud if it were [just] another Corps of the US Army.  Much of the Corps' pride comes from the fact that it is not just like everybody else.  This is why I propose keeping regiments despite thier risk of mafia.  However, buy mixing the manouver arms the regiments would no longer be bastions of inter-arm rivalry.  Regiments would fight both infantry & armour perspectives. 

Much like the BGs we send overseas Arty, Engrs, Cbt Sp, & CSS would wear thier own cap badge.  I see it this way because members of these MOCs often serve in more than just one of our current brigades (or they serve in Air or Sea units).  By not tying these MOCs to specific regiments, thier corps will still have the flexibility to move pers as needed.

Offline ArmyRick

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 30,995
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 1,990
  • What the????
Re: What Should the Army's Structure Be?
« Reply #21 on: November 06, 2004, 13:39:49 »
Not trying to steer this conversation in another direction but it is related to army structure.
 I read some interesting articles recently from senior officers about revamping the regimental system. I can see both pro and cons with this.
The pro: CF always deploy combined arms battle groups when deploying combat arms, this could make overall C & C easier as well admin if the battle groups were permament organizations
Cons? Thats alot of regimental and corps history and traditions to just simply dismiss or change overnight. What do you guys think?
M'eh

Offline Matt_Fisher

  • Army.ca Veteran
  • *****
  • 19,200
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 2,152
  • Former Marine
Exploring a new regimental system from two points of view
« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2004, 10:46:41 »
Exploring a new regimental system from two points of view
Friday, November 05, 2004

http://www.armee.forces.gc.ca/lf/English/6_1_1.asp?id=312

Present security operations require Western armies to engage in high-speed interventions, urban asymmetric fighting, and stability engagements.
 

OTTAWA, Ontario â ” The Canadian Army Journal Volume 7.1 Spring 2004 featured an article "The New Regimental system (NRS)" by Lieutenant-Colonel Harry Bondy. Included were comments by retired Lieutenant-Colonel David Banks.

LCol Bondy is responsible to generate concepts and discussion papers to shape Army culture. His ideas on the regimental system are aimed at developing specific force structure and personnel policy options for debate by the broader Army and Canadian Forces community.

LCol Bondy developed a concept paper, which proposes that the Army abandon its historical practice of maintaining separate Combat Arms pure-branch regiments and supporting units for a single Combat Branch. Focus on making the best use of all available capabilities in order to produce the most flexible and combat effective force possible. The current force structure and personnel strategy has become out of date since the WWII and does not suit our defence needs in the post-Cold War. It's food for thought and debate says LCol Bondy.

"A set of opposing camps dug in holding on to traditional roles or worse, specific pieces of equipment," says LCol Bondy of the Land Personnel Concepts and Policies office. When a culture gets that deeply ingrained, only an abrupt change to its force structure and personnel policies can initiate meaningful cultural transformation.

Brigade-sized regiments must be all-arms, all the time, cohesive, adaptable, and maneuverable on the scale of the battle group and combat team. The New Regimental system provides cohesion, stability, experience and focused professional soldiers required for today's operational requirements.

Why do we need a new regimental system?

LCol Bondy: Since the end of the Cold War, the defence tasks and deployments have changed. Present security operations require Western armies to engage in high-speed interventions, urban asymmetric fighting, and stability engagements. In order to meet the challenges, the Army not only must adapt and modernize with the latest technology and tactics but also change its culture.

Every operational and tactical deployment since 1992 has been all-arms, combined teams; it is time for a restructure so that the Army can meet the full range of post Cold War security tasks. Armies in Sweden, Poland and Austria have made similar reforms.

The argument is that military culture determines the pace and ultimately the success of Army Transformation. Research shows that personnel policies that affect postings, promotions, and selection have the greatest impact on military culture. Our personnel strategy has to change if the army is to succeed in transforming its culture, technology and tactics.

The active posting season shifts people between units for no real gain in efficiency. Again research shows that any one person does not make much difference to a unit. Constant turnover only weakens unit cohesion and performance. Cohesion strengthens group moral and combat effectiveness, and this comes from realistic repetitive training and stable relationships, and informal communication that build reputations. As much as possible, people stay at one location, in the New Regiment.

LCol Banks: Changes made since the 1960's must be rolled back to support force structure and professionalism. In order to achieve this goal, the CF needs to de-unify the forces and focus on operational jointness instead of administrative unification. LCol Banks supports exploring a single combat branch to replace the existing armour, artillery and infantry but through different approaches. If the Army cannot maintain armour and artillery branches that provide significant support that a modern and complete infantry unit could generate, these branches should be reduced to sub-military occupational classifications (MOCs) or employment streams within a single, centralized MOC.

Branches for a reason, not invent reasons for branches. He says the stage is set for this exploration. LCol Banks does not see how implementation of a new, decentralized personnel strategy would create a better Army as a whole.
This concept paper will create more problems beyond even what the Army is faced with now says LCol Banks.

What is the proposed New Regiment (NR)?

LCol Bondy: Each new regiment would have officers and soldiers belonging exclusively to it, that is, one cap badge for every member. Each new regiment is a combined arms, brigade-sized battle group, including logistics, administration and finance support. Sub-units vary in size from battalions to sections that are custom-sized for tasking, training, and detachments. Each regiment would be identified by its own name. In the event of a section tasking or peacekeeping mission, a temporary name such as Task Force Palladium would identify that specific group.

Every officer and soldier in the Army will spend the first 10-15 years of their service life with the New Regiment. This phase of army training and adapting to army culture is the best way to make everyone a soldier first. They are recruited from the surrounding region to reduce moves for personal reasons. Everyone is deployable. Civilians provide all non-deployable office and technical support. New Specialist Corps and New General Staff subgroups provide support to the NR and monitor, guide and direct other aspects of their culture, technology and tactics.

LCol Banks: The Army should be structured for flexibility and balance, and organized to meet the full range of post Cold War security tasks. He says that LCol Bondy offers a weak basis for his proposal. The Army should use proven facts and lessons learned to perform the necessary checks to determine the truth. There is a lack of stability in combat arms units and it has been a serious problem for years.

However, it is not clear how this proposed system of endless regrouping for various task forces would strengthen cohesion, especially at the unit level. Leaving a member in one job for more then three years and having a rigid promotion system could lead to general stagnation. This is the current situation â ” officers are too frequently extended or recycled and others serve in units for years due to a severe lack of personnel.

Restricting soldiers' careers within one single Combat branch does not create an agile, flexible, adaptable force. He supports a personnel system in which soldiers of all ranks remain at the same location for several years, much of that time with the same battalion. He concedes that there may be something to part of LCol Bond's concept.

What is the new general staff?

LCol Bondy: The New General Staff (NGS) is a small group of officers responsible for strategy, civilian-military relations and developing technological, tactical and cultural changes that fit contemporary security policy. The New General Staff sets the policy for individual and collective training, equipment use and other issues, to create balance and interoperability among the New Regiments. They are not responsible for the day to day management, that is left to the New Regiments or the civilian office.

LCol Banks: This idea is flawed and is likely to contribute to an Army with little esprit de corps or cohesion. The proposal to only allow for mid-career transfer from one unit to another would produce a field army led by officers limited in experience and knowledge who are detached from the reality of operations.

What is the new specialist corps?

LCol Bondy: A series of separate New Specialists Corps would be formed around traditional professions, and the new general staff social professions to provide the kind of discipline that makes Canadians such good soldiers. The New Specialist Corps would include: military law, chaplains, personnel selection, social work, counseling, family services, medical and dental care. The NSC uses a separate rank structure and wears uniform distinct from the NR and NGS. LCol Bondy's argument in this issue is summarized in the Canadian Army Journal.

LCol Banks: Based on my experience, says LCol Banks, supporters work best with and for the field army when they look, sound and act like the soldiers they are supporting. It is an excellent idea to have the supporters belong to the New Regiment but why not go further and ensure that those who serve in the Army are taught that they are a "soldier first, tradesman or support second."

All told, it is interesting to contrast LCol Bondy's article that draws upon research from writing on military affairs and social science and LCol Banks' article that relies on his personal experience and military career.
 
Article by Sgt Derek Scott

-------------------------------------------------

Interesting read.  The full article can be viewed at the Canadian Army Journal site:
http://armyapp.dnd.ca/ael/adtb/vol_7/CAJ_vol7.1_e.pdf

PBI,

I tend to agree with your viewpoint regarding the New General Staff and the New Specialist Corps.  Officers within the New General Staff would likely become strict academics with little real-world experience that is necessary when determining defence strategy and policy. 
The New Specialist Corps would further drive the wedge that currently exists between support and combat arms soldiers.

The New Regiment idea however is something that is worth exploring given the drawdown of the Armour and Artillery branches.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2004, 11:09:38 by Matt_Fisher »

Offline Thucydides

  • Army.ca Legend
  • *****
  • 202,335
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 13,903
  • Freespeecher
Re: Exploring a new regimental system from two points of view
« Reply #23 on: November 09, 2004, 13:20:09 »
My own thoughts on the matter are we can get the many of same benefits without the radical surgery Col Bondy is proposing.

Step one might be to treat the Brigade battlegroup in the same manner as a US Cavalry Regiment or Interim Brigade Combat Team (IBCT). Units and branches will still remain, but are de emphasised in favor of the Brigade (i.e I'm with Duke's Coy of 2 Battlegroup) as part of the cultural realignment.

Step two follows from the ever increasing convergence of weapons systems. When the Anti-Armour platoon can attempt engagements from 8+ Km away (ADATS MMEV, or alternatively ground launched Hellfires replacing the TOW), and sensor fused munitions could potentially give an MGS commander to ability to shoot a target 10+ km away, then the physical distinctions between Armour, Artillery and Infantry become moot. "Manoeuvre Battalions" can be formed with a mix of direct and indirect fire platforms, teamed with mounted Infantry soldiers to provide escort, close protection, target acquisition and sensing and close combat duties. Essentially each "company" will be a self contained combat team.

An Armoured Squadron is a good organizational starting point. It has a square structure of four symmetrical troops, and an administration troop for sustainment in battle. A Manoeuvre Battalion company could have a troop (platoon) of direct fire platforms, a troop (platoon) of indirect fire platforms and two troops (platoons) of mounted Infantry, as well as the administration troop (platoon). Our current mix of LAV systems shows the way, although the fire platform needs a lot of work. Alternative fire platforms might include 120mm turret mounted mortars with "smart" munitions, gun tanks firing through tube missiles and so on. Old regimental titles could still be kept, but the functional distinctions between the units will be gone. Each unit in the Battlegroup will have 3 "Manoeuvre companies", a Headquarters company and an ISTAR company (for example) regardless of its historical title.

My own view of staffs is they need to support direct "sensor to shooter" links, support horizontal communications between the deployed manoeuvre companies and do the thinking and planning in the background to "set up" logistics and support in an unobtrusive manner, so the company commander isn't innundated with requests for information from above, nor "info-dump" from higher. This is an idealized vision of how things are supposed to work now.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline E.R. Campbell

  • Retired, years ago
  • Army.ca Subscriber
  • Army.ca Myth
  • *
  • 494,735
  • Rate Post
  • Posts: 18,459
Re: Exploring a new regimental system from two points of view
« Reply #24 on: November 09, 2004, 14:12:26 »
There is an ailment called age related macular degeneration which causes old folks to not see too much or too well.   I, like many of my generation, may have difficulty in 'seeing' the requirements of the 21st century army; we - some of us, anyway - tend to view our past and our army through rose coloured glasses which also smooth out all the rough edges.   With that caveat, here are some random thoughts:

"¢   The regimental system has been around since Roman times; things which last that long tend to be useful.   We have understood, for a couple of millennia, that soldiers will endure any privation and they will fight against hopeless odds for their mates, and, with almost the same intensity, for the eagles and colours and other symbols and even ideas which tell them that they and their mates belong to this family and everyone else belongs to other families - some friends, some enemy.   We, generations of leaders going back to the mists of time, have exploited this very human attribute - one which is well known to every minor hockey coach.   Radical change may be desirable, even necessary but let us approach changes with caution - not fear, just caution;

"¢   The Canadian regimental system circa 2004 is not sacrosanct; some people - me included - will say that it is in urgent need of reform.   The regimental system has ebbed and flowed over the centuries.   The one we have was designed to exploit the religious, racial, linguistic and cultural differences which plagued 18th/19th century India and Britain, too - consider, as I have said elsewhere, the requirement for the Cameronians so that covenanters did not need to serve beside Church of England and, even, Church of Scotland apostates.   We have changed in the past we can - will - change in the future;

"¢   There is, equally, nothing sacred about the infantry and the cavalry - except that we have believed, for about 2,000 years, that they should be organized into different 'regiments' for training and to take account of their different attributes.   Maybe the distinctions between those attributes are disappearing;

"¢   I, personally, believe that one attribute of a 'good' (effective at enhancing individual and unit combat effectiveness) regimental system is that it must be large enough to prevent a monopoly.   We saw a monopoly, and some of its ill effects in 1990 during Lewis MacKenzie's testimony at the Somalia inquiry.   MacKenzie testified that after the brigade commander (Ernie Beno) had fired the R22eR CO then he (MacKenzie, the Area Commander) and Gord Reay (Commander of   the Command) and John de Chastelain (CDS) - the complete chain of command - all sat together to decide what to do next.   They decided that the best thing to do was to send the best infantry lieutenant colonel to Petawawa, quickly; then they amended that to the best available lieutenant colonel (so as not to take serving COs out of their units, etc); and then, when they looked at the list, they decided to pick the best available R22eR lieutenant colonel because they (all three PPCLI) were concerned (I think that's the word Lew used - it is what he meant) that it would appear[/i] that the PPCLI mafia was ganging up to serve its own interests.   The problem is: they were right - many, maybe most people would have thought just that.   It is my belief that the system needs, at least about ten, maybe a dozen regiments in addition to the artillery, logistics, engineers and signals (the latter two having provided a disproportionately large share of senior officers, including CGS/CDS in the post WWII army/CF) to prevent monopolization of the chain of command.   I think we might be, just barely, OK if we had five or ten single (permanent force) battalion infantry regiments plus four or five (or more) cavalry regiments; and

"¢   Good, effective regiments are expensive and they are easy targets when budgets are being cut.   Regiments need museums and the like and 'resources' to keep the 'regiment' in the soldiers' mind.   It even extends to clothing and equipment - polyester and plastic will, I think, degrade esteem and spirit de corps, if we want serge and polished leather performance then we have to pay for it.
It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
Algernon Sidney in Discourses Concerning Government, (1698)
----------
Like what you see/read here on Army.ca?  Subscribe, and help keep it "on the air!"