People only see the troops deploying to work. They neither known or care about the bureaucratic machinations that got them there. The dysfunction is not visible or apparent outside of the institution. It commands no concern or attention.
FJAG said:Regretfully, I'd take a guess that the majority of the public do not distinguish between the regular force and the reserve force when thinking "military" much less having any understanding of how those elements function, how many there are, the administrative details behind them or the problems which plague them. The CAF is one large amorphous mass that gets mentioned in the press occasionally but is mostly out of sight or mind.
Nope. If we are hoping for some crystallizing event to get a public movement for reform going, then we will be forever waiting in vain. We need either a strong minister or CDS with vision and the balls to turn the horse before it careens over the cliff's edge.
CBH99 said:Between our current CDS and our current MND, I thought any effective change to the PRes would have been coming during their tensure.
Vance had a solid reputation for good leadership during the Afghan war days, and I think was a good choice for CDS. And our MND had a lot of experience as a reservist, and is well aware of the changes that are needed to make it a more effective organization.
Yet on the issue of Reserve Restruction - zip, from both.
The crystalizing moment, if there is one, will be during the next serious armed conflict we find ourselves in, when the Army goes back to having a focus & the mindset changes back to a 'warfighting' mentality. :2c:
The last pro-active MND who executed a vision for the CAF was Hellyer. :boke:
FJAG said:Regretfully, that's probably true.
Your comment, however, made me also reflect on the Chiefs of Defence Staff we've had since unification to see who stood out for his vision and leadership.
There were a number who immediately popped to mind for the utter failures they were but none stood out as head and shoulders above the rest. Others who were clearly strong leaders but who, to the best of my knowledge, have left no lasting mark.
I briefly pondered Hillier but my feelings for him were quite mixed. Charisma is one thing and his relationship with government was notable as was the initial effort in shaping the force for Afghanistan. Unfortunately, IMHO, I think he botched being all-in on a medium weight Army and accelerated a spiralling growth in the bureaucracy in Ottawa which, again IMHO, is principally responsible for much of the sad state of the current field forces.
I think that, all-in-all, whatever talents each of them had were consumed by the day to day dealing with resource allocation and bureaucratic humdrum of their headquarters to left them with little to invest into any effort in the development of a vision that would revolutionize and evolve the force for the future. Fine tuning some issues, yes; "advancing with a purpose", no.
Interested in hearing opposing views.
LoboCanada said:How do you realistically fix it?
Unionize the reserves, bring the issues to the public eye, embarrass the gov't into action is the only way to make change. Auditor General reports don't force change, the reserves aren't in the public eye enough. The legacy of the current MND is a risk to cabinet, either opposition can paint him as an ineffective change-manager or a silenced innovator. A union representing his former reservists could target him as easy as the next guy.
Brihard said:No. Unions donMt get to trample on operational decisions. “Management has the right to manage”, and that doesn’t mean that have to be good at it. Unions can hold the employer accountable to law, regulation, policy, and the collective agreement. They cannot dictate things like how a unit is tasked, which jobs are deemed operationally necessary, etc. They can advocate and take legally enforceable action to make sure things are done with proper regards to health and safety, that work is properly compensated, etc.
The RCMP is grappling with this right now- their union has been up and running for about a year, but they mostly deal with individual or collective personnel, health, and safety issues. They don’t get to take the reins on how the force is deployed or the mission accomplished. They don’t get to lean out a too heavy chain of command, or excessively burdensome bureaucracy. A unionized portion of the military would be no different in these regards. All the operational problems, all the issues with force generation and force employment would still be unaddressed. Those are exclusively executive decisions.
Another way of putting this is that no planning is being done for a major war. This is shortsighted in the extreme. A military that thinks in terms of turning itself into a great host in a crisis is very different from one that is small, thinks small, and plans for very little. The Canadian Forces needs a plan. General Belzile 2005
FJAG said:I've said it before and I'll say it again:
The regular force is those people we need for day-to-day operations in a peacetime or semi-stable world. The reserves should be the plan for a "major war". This means organization, equipment and training. Take away any of those and it becomes an entity that falls far short of its potential and will fail the country in a crisis.
The only way to "fix" the reserves? - This is one way that won't break the bank. (Shameless plug)
MilEME09 said:For that though we would also need a robust and slightly more aggressive foreign policy that actually utilizes the military as a tool in the box, not just something to toss at issues when our allies come knocking for our keep.