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Thursday, 14 June 2012


I recently recieved the following which is doing the rounds of the MOD. Is is only after reading the first page, the joke becomes clear.
  (Not to be communicated to anyone outside HM Service without authority)
Title: Personnel on Defence RestructuringStrategic Defence and Security Review – Guidance to Defence Audience: All Regular and Reserve Service Personnel Applies: Immediately Expires: When rescinded or replaced Replaces:  Reference: 2012DIN01-666 Released: 1 April 2012 Channel: 01 Personnel Subject: Personnel, Equipment, TerminologyContent:
Restructuring following the Strategic Defence and Security Review
Guidance to Defence Personnel on Terminology used in Defence Sponsor: DCDS Media Ops (Newspeak & Spin) Contact:
 Keywords: Restructuring, Personnel, EquipmentRelated info:
Uncertainty: The Strategic Defence and Security Review
Defence White Paper 2010: Securing Britain in an Age of Classification: UnclassifiedIntroduction1. This guidance is being issued to remedy a perceived difficulty experienced by staff at all levels in understanding the rationale behind planned Defence restructuring. In particular many Staff Officers seem not to understand how reducing the numbers of ships, tanks, artillery pieces, aircraft and service personnel results in a more flexible, robust and effective fighting force.2. In particular it seems that much of the confusion stems from a systemic misunderstanding of the correct use of military terminology. A list of common terms and actual meanings follows. In addition, there follows an explanation of the key assumptions embedded within the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR). All Staff Officers are encouraged to seek clarification through their Chain of Command if they still have any questions.
 Detail3. Staff Terminology used in the new Defence Plan:

MoD Meaning
Flexiblea. Smaller
b. Unable to operate unless under protection of USA
Robusta. Smaller
b. Lacking reserves or regeneration capability
NetworkedSmaller, but still unable to talk to each other
AgileReally, really small
DeployabilityMethod of making the Forces, primarily the Army, able to send higher percentages of their manpower to a distant location. This is achieved by reducing the overall numbers involved; e.g. ‘in future the Army will be able to send 50% of its manpower to Africa in the back of a Cessna, thus achieving greater deployability’.
ReachThe distance the USA is willing to fly us
EfficientMuch, much smaller
StreamlinedJust unbelievably small
Just in time…for the funeral
IntegratedProcess by which all three Services get to brief against each other in public leaks, attempting to justify their own budget against cuts, thereby doing the Treasury’s work for it. Taken to extremes by the Army, with Corps and Regiments fighting each other, and perfected within the Infantry.
Technically ambitious
a. Slang, as in, "he was being a bit technically ambitious when he tried to drive that car through the wall." (c.f. ‘To propose a Bowman’)b. Description of the far future
ReservesIntegral part of current Operational Manning
Rationalisationa. Cuts
b. Psychological term, meaning to use complicated arguments to avoid facing unpalatable truths. e.g. "we don’t need to pay for both servicemen and expensive equipment, because we will be networked, agile and technically ambitious."
RapidUsed in a comparative sense, as in, ‘the rapid erosion of the Himalayas.’
RadicalDeep Cuts
TransformationReally Deep Cuts
Sustainable…assuming zero casualties, no leave and no emergencies.

Sentences such as, ‘these proposals capture our aim for a speedily deployable, agile, joint and integrated, technically ambitious defence capability,’ will make more logical sense to the experienced Staff Officer once the above definitions are applied. 
2 4. It will also help if Staff Officers bear in mind the following Planning Principles. Point ‘b’ will be of particular relevance in explaining the rationale behind restructuring to junior personnel. 4

g. In the past the Regimental System has been seen as the corner-stone of British Army success, creating a system in which the individual is made to feel part of a greater family, often stretching back hundreds of years, in which he is nurtured and developed, and to which he feels such great loyalty that he is inspired to sacrifice himself if need be for his Regimental comrades. However, the British youth of today are so naturally self-sacrificing and community spirited that additional incentives are now unnecessary, and in any case the threat to soldiers on the ground has been assumed away. There is therefore no further need for a system whose main purpose is to generate fighting spirit, and it can be safely emasculated to achieve administrative efficiency (see ‘Efficient’ above).

 Further Guidance6. More detailed guidance can be found in JSP 4708 – ‘Magic Mushrooms: their consumption, effects and results in the MoD’ and ex-Secretary-of-State Liam Fox’s soon
to be published Autobiography ‘What Colour is the Sky in My World?’
Key Assumptions: Current levels of operations are an aberration, will never be repeated and should form no guide to current manning requirements, let alone future ones. We can see that Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness have embraced peace, there are no more requirements for crowd control in Northern Ireland, the FBU have forsworn strikes as have all other key public workers, Ayman al-Zawahiri (the new head of Al Qaeda) is about to hand himself in, the Taliban are currently planning to give up their weapons, campaign for equal rights for women and join the International ‘Israel is Always Right’ Federation, and the Easter Bunny will be providing Area Air Defence for the Olympics in London.

k. Successive efficiency measures can be made to reinforce each other. For example, each time troop numbers are cut, a unit can then be tasked to conduct the same jobs as before. Provided there are no actual massacres of Friendly Forces, the new troop numbers can be seen to have been fully as effective as the previous numbers, and so can form a baseline for achieving efficiency cuts to new troop numbers. Savings can then be invested in new equipment, in the same way that British Airways fires half its pilots every time it needs to buy a new plane. The ultimate aim is to have one man, but equipped like Dr Octopus. He will sleep with one eye open at all times to replicate full manning.5. 
i. Savings will be ploughed into the purchase of large numbers of hats. This will be essential as in future everyone will be at least treble- or quadruple-hatted. Wars will be fought in rotation, on a strict ‘first come, first served’ basis.

j. Future savings will be made by abolishing all training for the Chiefs of Staff. After all, they haven’t proven remotely as effective at manoeuvre warfare, disruption, dislocation or divide-and-rule as the Treasury.
h. High divorce rates within the Services will solve manpower crises, by ensuring all service personnel will be happy to conduct back-to-back tours forever, as no one will have any families or friends to miss.
a. Much of the current crisis in Defence Spending can be directly traced to the high costs of legacy equipment. These were ordered at a time of ignorance in the past when Planners naively seemed to believe that the threat they identified as imminent would remain the same for the 20-30 year service life of the equipment they were ordering. The assumption in the 1980’s and 90’s that tanks, artillery, and aircraft would be needed in the future was ridiculous, as none of these equipments have been used by the British Armed forces to any degree since the Falklands war. However, current financial planners possess better foresight and are able to predict future threats for at least the next 40 years. We are therefore able to be certain
that Britain is unlikely to need any tanks, aircraft, submarines etc. past about 2015.
b. The new Defence Plan is not resource driven. A comprehensive strategic estimate has been conducted, from first principles, identifying the current and potential threats to the UK and its interests, allowing a reserve for the unexpected, and also allowing for recurrent non war-fighting tasks such as Fire Strike cover and Foot and Mouth disease. Against the tasks identified an ideal manpower establishment and Task Org has been identified. By an amazing coincidence it fits almost exactly within current Treasury expenditure plans for the MoD and even allows the MoD to carry more than half the costs of operations in Afghanistan.c. Use of Special Forces. No one in the general public has a clue how many there are, so they can be announced as deploying to every country in the world.d. Britain no longer needs a significant anti-submarine capability. No other nation possesses submarines in any numbers, submarine technology is unlikely to advance at all over the next few (i.e. 30) years and should anti-submarine technology or skills be required at any point in the future they can be reconstituted overnight from the reserves (once the reserves have been reconstituted). In any case, by 2020 the UK will be fully integrated into mainland Europe and will therefore no longer have a coastline to defend or be reliant upon sea-supply.

e. Similar arguments apply to air defence.
f. Aggressive use of terminology can compensate for lack of actual forces. For example, in the past effective deterrence of a reasonably capable Maritime threat would require the despatch of a task force, consisting of destroyers, frigates, submarines and possibly even a carrier. In the future a task force will still achieve this task; but task force will be the new description for a minesweeper.
Sqn Ldr I M Promoted, SO2 Spin, Orwell Building, Ministry of Truth in Defence, MoD Ext 1984

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