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Old 06-07-2008   #1
AdamG
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Default French military (catch all)

Mon Dieu

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...ents-show.html

According to confidential defence documents leaked to the French press, less than half of France's Leclerc tanks – 142 out of 346 – are operational and even these regularly break down.

Less than half of its Puma helicopters, 37 per cent of its Lynx choppers and 33 per cent of its Super Frelon models – built 40 years ago – are in a fit state to fly, according to documents seen by Le Parisien newspaper.

Two thirds of France's Mirage F1 reconnaissance jets are unusable at present.

*
According to army officials, the precarious state of France's defence equipment almost led to catastrophe in April, when French special forces rescued the passengers and crew of a luxury yacht held by pirates off the Somali coast.

Although ultimately a success, the rescue operation nearly foundered at an early stage, when two of the frigates carrying troops suffered engine failure, and a launch laden with special forces' equipment sunk under its weight.

Later, an Atlantic 2 jet tracking the pirates above Somali territory suffered engine failure and had to make an emergency landing in Yemen.
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Old 06-07-2008   #2
Tom Odom
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Well they put a Jaquar into a mountain side while Stan and I were in Goma. There was great discussion of this decline in the late 80s when I was in UNTSO serving with French officers. Looks like it came true

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Old 06-07-2008   #3
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This is what happens when you have to pay for all those hefty pensions for the '68ers.
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Old 06-07-2008   #4
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Default Look for the same thing elsewhere.

Everything has gotten so expensive that the maintenance and infrastructure costs are killers. Defense procurement generally fails to account for the fact that annual O&M costs are typically 10-20% of purchase price and long term support typically adds 25-35% to the per item cost.

A Viet Nam era camouflage band cost Seven cents; today they're over a buck. The average Joe in an Infantry unit has about $12K worth of gear vs. his 1960s counterpart's $500. An M1A2 costs over $4M, UH-60s are up to around $20M.

Not to mention that each $10.00 per Barrel rise in oil prices costs the USAF about $600M...

The Anti War types will win; soon no one will be able to afford a war...
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Old 06-07-2008   #5
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Question Speaking of this

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Originally Posted by Ken White View Post
Everything has gotten so expensive that the maintenance and infrastructure costs are killers. Defense procurement generally fails to account for the fact that annual O&M costs are typically 10-20% of purchase price and long term support typically adds 25-35% to the per item cost.

A Viet Nam era camouflage band cost Seven cents; today they're over a buck. The average Joe in an Infantry unit has about $12K worth of gear vs. his 1960s counterpart's $500. An M1A2 costs over $4M, UH-60s are up to around $20M.

Not to mention that each $10.00 per Barrel rise in oil prices costs the USAF about $600M...

The Anti War types will win; soon no one will be able to afford a war...
The military has its own capabilities for building hydro electric dams and purifying water, etc.

MAAYbee OILRIG anyone
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Old 06-07-2008   #6
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The Anti War types will win; soon no one will be able to afford a war...
Which begs the question; is the material-heavy approach to modern warfare useful?

The situation has changed in comparison to the 60's - material is extremely expensive, manpower is expensive - but all Western nations have significant unemployment, including the age group 18-30.
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Old 06-07-2008   #7
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Default Probably not,

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Which begs the question; is the material-heavy approach to modern warfare useful?
however, it won't go away. No one is prepared to cede an advantage to others.
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The situation has changed in comparison to the 60's - material is extremely expensive, manpower is expensive - but all Western nations have significant unemployment, including the age group 18-30.
True, though I'd say much of that material is more over priced than it is actually expensive. Manpower is expensive because the legislatures of the West have made it so -- unintended consequence of trying to be all things to all people (and buy votes...).

No matter. The unemployed 18-25 year olds are a far greater problem that will get worse before it gets better. You'd think people would realize what causes that overpopulation. The fun thing is that the so-called have-nots are reproducing at twice to three times the rate of the more (in their own minds) civilized nations. That, I suspect, is going to provide employment for all that materiel heavy military force...

We live in interesting times...
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Old 06-07-2008   #8
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I think it still is. Fad logsitics concepts (JIT, et al) that are wildly successful in corporate environments fail when LOCs/LOSs are under fire or don't have the structure set up to make them work. In recent memory, the "Drive to Baghdad," while tactically neat, was not logistically sustainable after the push. Heavy units MTOE organized around the newer, untested support structure had to beg, borrow and steal from "legacy" division wedge units.

Why? Simple: the "Iron Mountain" is effective because it leaves little to chance. Decimating support units in favor of more infantry is a good concept if those units don't actually have to be supported. You make that worse when you strip your "tail" out in the hopes that higher-echelon support units will be there to help, and said units aren't on the battlefield yet.

I'm not a cheerleader for bringing back DESERT STORM-era SUPCOMs or anything like that. That said, I've watched the 82d Busborne in action, and I did not like what I saw.

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Which begs the question; is the material-heavy approach to modern warfare useful?

The situation has changed in comparison to the 60's - material is extremely expensive, manpower is expensive - but all Western nations have significant unemployment, including the age group 18-30.
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Old 06-08-2008   #9
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I didn't think so much about force structures and such when I wrote that.
I thought rather about the expectations that we have.

We expect good camps and plenty fire support everywhere.
Our MBTs were not designed with much thought about fuel consumption (I know that even in armor divisions the thirst of the MBTs is a minor problem).
The Truck fleets aren't up to date, old designs (70's designs quite often, French even use some 50's designs) are thirsty by default.
MRAP vehicles are extremely heavy in comparison to their transport performance.
Food is not being purchased in the theatre, but being imported most of the time afaik.

But the most obvious problem is that we expect to be everywhere strong at once, every company in action has as much support as in earlier wars only companies at the centre of gravity.

The expectations are so incredibly high. Operations would be much cheaper, often more agile and certainly less bureaucratic if we would be ready to tolerate some more suboptimal results.

It's a huge topic and I certainly didn't formulate it very well.
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Old 06-08-2008   #10
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Default Carts and horses...

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Why? Simple: the "Iron Mountain" is effective because it leaves little to chance.
Risk mitigation as TTP? Okay. Mayhap you're looking at the wrong end.
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Decimating support units in favor of more infantry is a good concept if those units don't actually have to be supported. You make that worse when you strip your "tail" out in the hopes that higher-echelon support units will be there to help, and said units aren't on the battlefield yet.
Which brings up two questions; why aren't they there and, more importantly, does that mean the design of units that are on the ground is flawed in that they need (want?) too much 'stuff?'
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...That said, I've watched the 82d Busborne in action, and I did not like what I saw.
S'okay, most of the bus riders aren't too impressed by the rest of the Army either.
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Old 06-08-2008   #11
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Default Sorry to say it...

Actually, military equipment SHOULD be getting cheaper, and so should armies.

The IT and solid state electronics evolution and all it's spin-offs should have created considerable savings, and actually has, in terms of procurement and ownership. Civilian cell phones are far more complex than a lot of military radios, yet cost nothing.

If you want to see true corruption, look at the companies that build Sniper Rifles!! Gold Plated Wheel Chairs!! UAVs cost vastly more than they should, and the list is almost endless.

The problem is how the equipment is procured and how the money is spent.

One day this will all bite us in the ass as folks like Hezbollah and Venezuela can go out and just pay for military capability, and not worry about the budget shell games of the DoD and MoD.
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Old 06-08-2008   #12
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I'd argue it's not TTP. Rather, it's TTP (and materiel)-driven. Complex systems (and tactics that use them) require more support. We went through a brief infatuation with "FedEx Logistics", which was mercifully killed in 2004. Corporate management principles are fine, but tend to have unforeseen consequences when applied to an army (especially one in a war).

Why weren't high-echelon support units afield? Talk to the planners about that one, but if I remember the traffic correctly, it was as it usually goes: planners weren't really thinking about that sort of thing. Some had drank the 4ID Kool-Aid and went in very light on the support end in the hopes that corps support units were going to magically quark in from the Twilight Zone to keep non-existent LOCs open. Bottom line is that we paid for our post-DS sins from an MTOE standpoint with horrible post Phase III readiness.

So yeah, I would agree that the unit designs are flawed. I don't think they "want" too much. As both a combat arms and a support weasel, I never have considered a desire by a unit for support to be a "want". However, I think complex weapon systems intrinsically require complex support solutions, unless said support solutions are designed as such that the majority of the support is done on a modular basis further back in the field. Most of our systems aren't built like that, and the Army's attempt to "replace forward, repair rear" only works when the systems themselves can support that.

My crack about the Imperial Army only applies to their desert mobility. I've worked with them in combat, and they do fine. They just can't support themselves or move well.

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Risk mitigation as TTP? Okay. Mayhap you're looking at the wrong end.Which brings up two questions; why aren't they there and, more importantly, does that mean the design of units that are on the ground is flawed in that they need (want?) too much 'stuff?' S'okay, most of the bus riders aren't too impressed by the rest of the Army either.
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Old 06-08-2008   #13
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Default A touch off topic, but

worth pulling out in some detail.

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Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
The situation has changed in comparison to the 60's - material is extremely expensive, manpower is expensive - but all Western nations have significant unemployment, including the age group 18-30.
[quote=Ken White;49350]True, though I'd say much of that material is more over priced than it is actually expensive. Manpower is expensive because the legislatures of the West have made it so -- unintended consequence of trying to be all things to all people (and buy votes...).

Quote:
Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
Actually, military equipment SHOULD be getting cheaper, and so should armies.

The IT and solid state electronics evolution and all it's spin-offs should have created considerable savings, and actually has, in terms of procurement and ownership. Civilian cell phones are far more complex than a lot of military radios, yet cost nothing.
There's three "problems" here - cost, distribution systems and "unemployment" - but they are actually all related quite strongly.

Let's set the scene first. In any socio-economic system, you have an integrated production, distribution and accounting system (in the broad sense for all of these). All of these components have cross-cutting sub-components of technology (what you use to achieve X), technique (How you achieve X), and measures of valuation (What X is "worth"). If humans were rationally logical, which we aren't despite Adam Smith and his apologists, we would have a priority chain which has technology as the highest value and accounting as the lowest. What we really have is the inverse of that with accounting as the highest and technology as the lowest.

What this value chain does is priorize accounting systems as the primary ordering schema of cultures. So, for example, when a culture uses money as its primary accounting system, technique and technology will take a back end to making money. When a culture uses "honour" as its primary accounting system, technology and technique again are brought into play to support that accounting system. The reasons why this is so is both simple ("status") and highly complex (achieve X result and you will be happy, rewarded, successful, "self-actualized", etc.). In general, cultural accounting systems are the markers cultures use to keep score in ideological games.

Since we happen to live in a culture that valorizes "money" as its accounting system, let's draw that one out. There are a whole slew of different forms of socio-economic systems that valorize "money" as the cultural accounting system but, in the West, ours is tied in to a general evolution from merchantile capitalism through free market / state capitalism to industrial feudalism (which is roughly where we are now in many sectors of the economy). If anyone is interested in the developmental trajectory, read Weber's The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (ebook, sparknotes, Amazon).

The big shift in the past 50 years has been the Third Industrial Revolution (automation, computers and robotics); Wilfs' IT revolution. Between roughly 1910 and 1955 or so, the dominant model was a rational-bureaucratic organization (again after Weber), organized around horizontally and vertically integrated product area silos; the so-called "military-industrial complex" is just one example of this (Sears is another, as is GM). This was a strong form of industrial feudalism that, like most feudal organizations, got the snot kicked out of it by a really highly organized force (specifically, by the Korean and Japanese car industry during the mid- to late 1960's).

The reaction of the North American cultures to this problem was, in many ways, predictable. First, increase centralized government control (governments are "industrial" fiefdoms just the same as any other organization). So we see a rise in social programs to deal with the social dislocation effects of losing massive numbers of economic battles (think about the increase in welfare programs, job retraining programs, etc.). Governments also took over more control of the cultural accounting systems - the social ideologies - while, at the same time, increasingly restricting what ideologies could be talked about in the public arena (compare the political discourse of the early-mid 1930's with that of the early to mid 1970's and you'l see what I mean). Increasingly, these ideologies became more rhetorical and less substantive.

Second, North American cultures searched for the "innovative" answer to their problems. The most obvious ones were in production costs associated with old manufacturing plants and with high cost labour. So, what happens then? Throughout the 1970's and into the 1980's, you see new plants being built with an increasing amount of automation in them employing fewer people. By the 1990's, this is coupled in with a trend to reduce labour costs even further by doing away with high cost North American labour and "exporting" jobs, as Lou Dobbs would say, to third world countries. In order to support this shift, several other shifts were necessary - decreased tariff barriers, increased ability to "import" cheap labour, increased ability to export products, increased capacity for consumers to purchase goods, etc. Note that most of these deal with changes in the distribution system...

At the same time as these changes are going on, there is an increasing trend in the production of personal computers. Computers, of all types, are the sine qua non of setting up and running automation (thereby reducing labour costs). They are also necessary for the implementation of JIT systems (which reduce the logistical tail of corporations and means that capital flows through them faster). They also end up producing a "new" environment for businesses - the Internet.

By 1996 or so (as early as 1982 in some areas and still not yet in others; 1996 is just a marker of convenience), the general social organization has split between rational-bureaucratic industrial fiefdoms with few permanent members and many temporary employees (mercenaries in the true sense), and clusters of fragmented and contingent communities of interest and communities of practice which, on the whole, are organized around a totally different form of cultural organization: reciprocity (vs. the Authority Ranking system of the rational-bureaucratic system and the late industrial feudal groups). In this system, "valuation" (the measure of an accountancy system) is not based on an office held or money (either held individually or controlled by an office) but, rather, on individual skill, knowledge and "trust".

This, in my usual round-about way, comes back to Wilfs' point:

Quote:
Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
Actually, military equipment SHOULD be getting cheaper, and so should armies.
It all depends on what organizational form the equipment and armies are based on. When your accounting system is based on money - control of vast amounts increased your status - then the equipment and armies should be getting more expensive. The potential for cheaper equipment and cheaper armies is definitely there but, on the whole, is mitigated against by the cultural accounting system. When you compare the actual costs of military equipment and "armies" in an honour based system, the Anbar tribes are a good example of this, they are much cheaper. Compare it also with a reciprocity based system, such as AQ, and again, they are much cheaper.

If you want to reduce the cost and increase the efficiency of the actual system, then you have to figure out how to change the basic accountancy system. After all, how many bureaucrats get rewarded for coming in under-budget? They don't; they get penalized by having their budgets reduced with the consequent loss of status and power. If you want to see an analog of the current situation in the US, assuming that the accountancy system isn't changed, then I would recommend an examination of the Byzantine Empire during the 1020 - 1040 period; it's not pleasant reading, but it does clearly show what happens when the bureaucratic accountancy system prevails.
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Old 06-08-2008   #14
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Default Kings of War Weighs In

An Army Falling Apart - Theo Farrell, Kings of War

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Internal documents report the French Army to be on the verge of “falling apart”, according to the Telegraph. Less than half of the army’s Leclerc main battle tanks, and less than 40% of its helicopter fleet, are operational. This gives a new spin on French reluctance to do more of the heavy lifting (i.e., combat operations) in Afghanistan. Here was I putting it down to political reluctance. But perhaps it’s as much a case of “can’t do” as “won’t do”.

I did quite a bit of focus group work with French officers in the Ecole Militaire in Paris last year. This is a true war-fighting military. Years of intervention in Africa have given French officer corps combat experience. And crucially, this is a military itching to get back to war. Especially as their last big punch-up, the 1991 Gulf War, proved to be a bit of an embarrassment: the French only able to deploy a light division that was tasked with guarding the far left flank of the coalition advance into Kuwait. This was in contrast to the British 1st Armoured Division, which joined the US VII Corps assault on the Iraqi armoured reserves and Republican Guard...
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Old 06-08-2008   #15
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Question TP or not TP...

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Originally Posted by sandbag View Post
I'd argue it's not TTP. Rather, it's TTP (and materiel)-driven. Complex systems (and tactics that use them) require more support.
No question; I was suggesting that the issue might better be those tactics which do indeed drive the materiel requirement. I'm pretty well convinced that war is inherently simple and that we humans have complicated it unnecessarily for a variety of reasons. Not least here in the US are an overweening love of technology for its own sake; a budget process and a Congress that promote jobs in Districts at the expense of truly good training; inherent laziness and the stultifying experience of WWI and WW II which is still very much in evidence; there's more but those will do for openers.

In my experience the most important requirement for the conduct of combat operations (and the preparation therefor...) is agility. That is followed by speed and that by effective firepower; way down the list are net power or mass. A massive force will by definition not be agile and will sacrifice speed for mass. Effective firepower is not the same thing as volume of fire or total firepower. That simple.

That's why I say the TTP factors -- which should be the drivers but are not -- are important. The TTP should drive the support process, yet because of a lack of emphasis and thought we have the support process constraining the TTP. The combat arms senior leadership over the years has failed to focus on that issue so I don't really fault the Loggies. That, BTW, is not to say that I'm living in a dream world, I'm well aware of many current constraints but am suggesting that a number of those could have been ameliorated long ago with the proper focus and resourcing. We elected not to do that for various reasons so we are where we are. Just saying we coulda and shoulda done better...
Quote:
We went through a brief infatuation with "FedEx Logistics", which was mercifully killed in 2004. Corporate management principles are fine, but tend to have unforeseen consequences when applied to an army (especially one in a war).
Blame Robert Strange McNamara and his demand data mentality for much of that; he failed to realize that what worked for static Ford dealerships would not work for military forces at war. Subsequent SecDefs with Corporate experience keep looking for a way to reduce the massive inventory required for wartime readiness -- they apparently do not realize that there is little as cost-inefficient as a Rifle company in peacetime...

Problem is that Rifle Companies are like firearms; one rarely need one but when one does, one need it pretty badly.

Still, was the problem that FedEx logistics did not work -- or that the system did not want it to work? I'd suggest the latter and add the caveat that the mechanical elements to make it work did not exist. Further suggest those elements were not wanted by the Powers that be and Congress because they would have sapped funding from 'more important items.' Wonder how many fewer IED casualties there'd be had we delivery systems that were not roadbound? If we had a far lower requirement for Cl III?
Quote:
Why weren't high-echelon support units afield? Talk to the planners about that one, but if I remember the traffic correctly, it was as it usually goes: planners weren't really thinking about that sort of thing.
True; no question that post attack thoughts did not intrude on many involved.
Quote:
Some had drank the 4ID Kool-Aid and went in very light on the support end in the hopes that corps support units were going to magically quark in from the Twilight Zone to keep non-existent LOCs open. Bottom line is that we paid for our post-DS sins from an MTOE standpoint with horrible post Phase III readiness.
I think there was also a strong belief (on the part of many who should've known better) that it was going to be a quick in and out operation. In any event, whoever played with the TPFD erred mightily.
Quote:
So yeah, I would agree that the unit designs are flawed. I don't think they "want" too much. As both a combat arms and a support weasel, I never have considered a desire by a unit for support to be a "want". However, I think complex weapon systems intrinsically require complex support solutions, unless said support solutions are designed as such that the majority of the support is done on a modular basis further back in the field. Most of our systems aren't built like that, and the Army's attempt to "replace forward, repair rear" only works when the systems themselves can support that.
Agreed -- I am merely suggesting that:

(a) They should be so designed; that we have really known that since Korea; and that we have diligently refused to do that for less than pragmatic reasons.

(b) We are fully capable of doing that but the bureaucracy would and will not be served if we do, ergo we likely will not unless placed in an existential situation.

(c) DOPMA and HRC are part of that problem...
Quote:
My crack about the Imperial Army only applies to their desert mobility. I've worked with them in combat, and they do fine. They just can't support themselves or move well.
True, design factors again plus the aforementioned failure to design materiel to minimize support requirements. They can get by without an amazing amount of support if they have to and still be more than dangerous but most of the folks there are just as used to the status quo as the rest of the Army so they want their share. They can move better than most Infantry on foot but they're still on foot; the Hittites discovered that foot troops weren't ideal in the Desert over 16 centuries ago. METT-TC applies...

They are quite capable in both realms at what they were designed for (if a little over heavy on vehicles ), when METT-TC factors are ignored no unit does all that well.
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Old 06-08-2008   #16
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Default Too true...

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Originally Posted by marct View Post
...the so-called "military-industrial complex" is just one example of this (Sears is another, as is GM). This was a strong form of industrial feudalism that, like most feudal organizations, got the snot kicked out of it by a really highly organized force (specifically, by the Korean and Japanese car industry during the mid- to late 1960's).
Sad thing is that neither the Mil-Ind complex or US car makers seem to have learned a lesson...
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The reaction of the North American cultures to this problem was, in many ways, predictable. ... Increasingly, these ideologies became more rhetorical and less substantive.
Again ignoring history -- and reality...
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...In this system, "valuation" (the measure of an accountancy system) is not based on an office held or money (either held individually or controlled by an office) but, rather, on individual skill, knowledge and "trust".
With '"trust" being a relative term more often equal to 'known and can be dominated...'
Quote:
...The potential for cheaper equipment and cheaper armies is definitely there but, on the whole, is mitigated against by the cultural accounting system...

If you want to reduce the cost and increase the efficiency of the actual system, then you have to figure out how to change the basic accountancy system. After all, how many bureaucrats get rewarded for coming in under-budget? They don't; they get penalized by having their budgets reduced with the consequent loss of status and power. If you want to see an analog of the current situation in the US, assuming that the accountancy system isn't changed, then I would recommend an examination of the Byzantine Empire during the 1020 - 1040 period; it's not pleasant reading, but it does clearly show what happens when the bureaucratic accountancy system prevails.
Well said on all counts. Has the problem of being distressingly on target but...
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Old 06-08-2008   #17
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Default True, Wilf. This in particular:

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Originally Posted by William F. Owen View Post
Actually, military equipment SHOULD be getting cheaper, and so should armies.

If you want to see true corruption, look at the companies that build Sniper Rifles!!...
The Sako TRG 22/42 are more than good enough for virtually all purposes and are the cheapest in their respective calibers out there by far.

Hardware procurement has really gotten to be a con game. Reminds me of Ernie King during WW II -- FDR told him to buy what he needed and he took that as a license to steal and bought more ships and stuff for the USN than we could have ever manned. Thus setting the USN on course to keep buying more and more...

(NOTE to Squids; no attack, the first part is historical fact, the second is the way the game is played today. Not the Navy's fault)
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Old 06-09-2008   #18
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Default Funny youse guys should mention the spike in spending

http://sg.news.yahoo.com/afp/2008060...h-c1b2fc3.html

AFP - Tuesday, June 10 <- AFP. Qu'elle surprise

STOCKHOLM (AFP) - - World military spending grew 45 percent in the past decade, with the United States accounting for nearly half of all expenditure, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said Monday.
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Military spending grew six percent last year alone, according to SIPRI's annual report.

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The United States spends by far the most towards military aims, dishing out 547 billion dollars last year, or 45 percent of global expenditure.

Britain, China, France and Japan, the next in line of big spenders, lag far behind, accounting for just four to five percent of world military costs each.
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Old 06-09-2008   #19
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http://blog.wired.com/defense/2008/0...es-w.html#more

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... I believe the services have to be able to do everything — across the entire spectrum of conflict. We have got to be able to fight a counterinsurgency, an irregular war scenario, all the way up to the high-end theater. And we have to be able to do that 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

You don’t get to pick when and where you do this. You have to be able to do it on a global scale. . ...
That's what I call cost-riving ambitions.
He had the ambition to be able to do everything, decade after decade, everywhere. That's madness!

Such an attitude - if funded - ruins any state in the long run.
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Old 06-09-2008   #20
Ken White
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Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
...He had the ambition to be able to do everything, decade after decade, everywhere. That's madness!
We've had that requirement effectively since the 50s; we've done it well on occasion but got over-focused in one direction in the 80s. It's neither that hard nor need it be that expensive.
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Such an attitude - if funded - ruins any state in the long run.
Possibly true but certainly arguable with definition or length of "long run" being key. In any event, no democracy including us is likely to fund it fully. Nor, in this day and age will a large force be able to attract enough recruits to do it on a total force basis.

The key is to tailor the force with some elements specialized for the various spectrums of combat and all able with some retraining to adapt to another spectrum. That is not that difficult and I'd argue that the bulk of the US Army and the USMC really did that pretty well from the late 50s until the mid 60s (Viet Nam was a distraction). After Viet Nam, the Army set out to try to produce a 'doctrine' that would focus on one type of war and convinced themselves to hew to that as a means to affect national policy. That didn't work too well...

Problem with that solution is the opposition will aim for your weak spot. As we have seen.

Solution is to have a force that is affordable, able to recruit in adequate numbers and that has elements that specialize in each potential spectrum in order to provide an instant initial deployment to the contingency capability followed by rapid trainup of those folks that were focused elsewhere later deploy to the current contingency.

As I said, it's been done before -- and we're supposed to be smarter and better educated now than we were then. I firmly believe most units I've seen in many nations armies are capable of doing a lot more than the systems expect them to do.
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