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Author Topic: Should the UK armed forces be reduced from three services to just one or two?  (Read 3797 times)

Offline Duffield1

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A report published today suggests that the three arms of the UK armed forces (army, navy and air force) might be more efficient if at least two of them merged.  Good idea or bad idea?  The floor is open...

Offline spryte

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there are a couple of cons that are hitting straight off - for a start, job losses. fair enough, give the people who want to PVR a chance to jump ship, but there are going to be hundreds/thousands of people who don't want to be made redundant, and what are they gonna do? secondly, if (somehow) the SNP get their way, then what will happen?? they want scotland to have its own armed forces, and that's one messy breakup i don't wanna see played out in reality.

pro points... hmmm... floor open, i guess. nothing off the top of my head.
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Offline Div_2008

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Funnily enough, I had a similar discussion just under a year ago, whilst down in the Falklands, serving in a Tri-Service unit. The outcome of that discusion was inconclusive, as it nearly ended up in a mass brawl. The Army and Navy were both adamant that we could easily survive without the RAF, and for some strange reason they disagreed.

The way I see it is, the Army and the Navy already train their own pilots and to merge the existing RAF into the Army and Navy wouldn't really be that much of a problem logistically. Over the last few years all three services have started to come in line with each other, starting with "pay(cut) 2000" and the most recent I can think of being the implementation of The Armed Forces Act 2006, which replaced the Army Act 1955, the Air Force Act 1955 and the Naval Discipline Act 1957, and came into force in November 2009.

I think it is inevitable that we will revert back to 2 services (pre-1918), whether they'll go as far as having just one armed service (pre-1537) is doubtful. So The question should really ask "WHEN Should the UK armed forces be reduced from three services...". I believe that within the next 10 to 15 years, the RAF will cease to exist.

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Wumpus

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There is an amount of overlap, but that is not to say that members of all three forces are interchangeable.

The equipment and training is very different.

For instance, although all three forces train pilots, it would be difficult to take an army or RAF pilot, stick him in a Sea Harrier, point him at a ship to land on and let him get on with it.  At least, not without a very large bill and a lot of paperwork in the near future.

I can see some benefits in merging the upper ranks. 
This could provide a more effective command/control mechanism, along with better co-ordination of the various battlefield assets.

But I can't see the squaddies or their loyalties changing much in the very near future.
Long term...maybe.

Offline Div_2008

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Obviously the training for the pilots in the 3 Services differ. This shouldn't really matter as the training esablishments are already in place. As I said logistically it should be pretty simple, it's not a case of just completly scrapping one of the services, it's basically just a name change. Mind you being Soldier I can say that, if I was an Airman then it would definitely be a different story.
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Wumpus

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Mind you being Soldier I can say that, if I was an Airman then it would definitely be a different story.


Hmmm.  Some (uniniitiated) might argue that a soldier just points a gun and pulls a trigger.
Both of the other services train people to do exactly the same.

So maybe it would be the army being disbanded, merging with the other two services.

Does that change your slant on it?

Offline Div_2008

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Hmmm.  Some (uniniitiated) might argue that a soldier just points a gun and pulls a trigger.
Both of the other services train people to do exactly the same.

So maybe it would be the army being disbanded, merging with the other two services.

Does that change your slant on it?

No not at all! The Navy and RAF would be the first to admit, that they are not trained to fight on the battle field, and I, being a communications engineer, would be the first to admit that I'm not trained as well as a rifleman. most of the training you receive in the armed forces is specific to arm, so if you don't need to know then you don't know.


When this happens, which it will, everyone's job (undoubtedly there'd be stream lining) will be the same all that will change will be the fact that the RAF will no longer be called the RAF.

Why am I picking on the RAF? They ARE the Junior Service, The Army and Navy already have Pilots and financially and logistically it would be easier. Also the Navy and Army have Traditions, whereas the RAF only have bad habits(Sorry, private Joke).
When you go home,
Tell them of us, and say,
For your tomorrow,
We gave our today.
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The shall grow not old,
As we that are left grow old,
Age shall not weary them,
Nor the years condemn,
At the going down of the sun,
And in the morning,

WE WILL REMEMBER THEM.