Military History | How To Make War | Wars Around the World Rules of Use How to Behave on an Internet Forum
Australia Discussion Board
   Return to Topic Page
Subject: Silver Bullets
Volkodav    3/1/2009 5:11:22 AM
No I'm not hunting wherewolves, nore am I the Lone Ranger. What I am thinking about is the special capabilities that would allow Australia to deter attack, protect its interests and when necessary not only punch above its weight but to be able to do so much real damage to an aggressor that they will be begging the UN to broker a peace deal. One of those capabilities is the SAS but that is probably about it these days. The F/A-18G (if we convert the 12 wired up F's) will be, as will Wedgetail (if it ever works), however I doubt the F-35 will be. This is not because there is anything wrong with it but because the US and LM are actively marketing it to every man and his dog, pretty much like they did with the F-16, ensuring that we will gain no qualitive advantage from our purchase. What would make good silver bullets for Australia? What capabilities / Equipment would give us such an edge that it doesn't matter how badly we are out numbered, would prevent an aggressor from reaching us, would make a beligerant party back down if they knew we were coming? A coulpe of ideas I have had or recycled: 1. Submarine launched TLACM and an increased number of submarines to launch them. 2. ALCM and a long range platform to launch them (surplus B-1B's?)and the strike package to get the launchers through to target. 3. An air supremacy fighter (1 or 2 sqn's) 4. A robust CAS type. 5. A proper heavy brigade with modern networked equipment able to maintain one full battle group and one re enforced combat team on deployment. 6. A light infantry brigade able to maintain a re enforced battle group and 3 re enforced combat teams on deployment. Where necessary we should develop hardened high capability platforms to make up for lack of numbers through individual quality. Instead of going lighter or cheaper we should go heavier and harder, even if it is more expensive. Aim for qualative overmatch at every level to provide localsuperiority at every occassion. Look at every level and see what we could do to give our guys the edge. i.e the rifle section, replace the F-89's in the fire teams with an AR (with scope) and a LMG of some type while embeding a GPMG (7.62),a grenadier and a sniper / marksman in a support team in each section. Let the ideas roll.
 
Quote    Reply

Show Only Poster Name and Title     Newest to Oldest
Pages: 1 2 3   NEXT
DropBear       3/1/2009 5:44:47 AM
What I am thinking about is the special capabilities that would allow Australia to deter attack, protect its interests and when necessary not only punch above its weight but to be able to do so much real damage to an aggressor that they will be begging the UN to broker a peace deal.

I would have thought that we already have a number of natural and technological deterrent capabilities in place.

What nation would attack us or our immediate interests without exposing themselves to vast distances and harsh, isolated environs? What aggressor has the networked technological abilities or could call upon the close network of friends/allies and their resources?

One of those capabilities is the SAS but that is probably about it these days.

Really? So we don't have decent subs capable of snooping over vast distances? We don't have good established networks capable of COMINT, ELINT, SIGINT etc? We don't have force multipliers that are above the capabilities of said aggressors?

The F/A-18G (if we convert the 12 wired up F's) will be, as will Wedgetail (if it ever works), however I doubt the F-35 will be. This is not because there is anything wrong with it but because the US and LM are actively marketing it to every man and his dog, pretty much like they did with the F-16, ensuring that we will gain no qualitive advantage from our purchase.

Not every man and his dog can afford LM's latest uber product. Palm oil and poultry exchange rates are hurting much the same way as the $AUD takes a slide one way or the other. Can't think of any potential aggressors that will be poying on up to buy said LM product or its global equivalent any time soon.

The qualitative advantage will come in the electronic goodies it posesses in combination with other C4ISR assets we operate or will over time.


What would make good silver bullets for Australia? What capabilities / Equipment would give us such an edge that it doesn't matter how badly we are out numbered, would prevent an aggressor from reaching us, would make a beligerant party back down if they knew we were coming?

Silver bullet = more money and eighteen year olds with an interest in the services.

A coulpe of ideas I have had or recycled:
2. ALCM and a long range platform to launch them (surplus B-1B's?)and the strike package to get the launchers through to target.

How about a couple of sqns of SuperBug and F-35 armed with JASSM?

3. An air supremacy fighter (1 or 2 sqn's)

It's called the SuperHornet and legacy Bug. Both of which (in combination with AEWACS and gravy strokers etc) will fly supreme against the non-BVR, limited range jets to our north.

Curious.
 
Quote    Reply

Volkodav       3/1/2009 6:45:23 AM
DB I'm not talking about having a little bit of an edge but having such overwhelming overmatch that most fights will never happen.
 
Our current subs are good but there are subs being bought and entering service in the region that will be a serious threat to them well before they are retired.  Building six boats and then waiting 20 years to build a replacement is the perfect method to ensure our submarine arm will be out classed.  Think of the COLLINS class in automotive terms, we bought VN SS Commodores in 1988 while Malaysia has just bought some nice new Renault Megane Sports, our Commies still have the edge in some areas but overall are out of warranty.  What will it be like when Indonesia gets their new Skodas?
 
I should add that when we ordered our legacy Bugs in 1982 it never crossed our minds that the US would be selling better gear, i.e.  F-16C, F/A-18D and F-15E to our near and some not so near neighbours.
 
Basically we are buying gear that is good enough for today and will probably get by tomorrow but will struggle next week.  We need to be spending our money in ways that will see us through the long term.  This is as opposed to having panic spends as gear wears out and becomes completely out moded or even dangerous to its users.
 
There used to be an add campaign to discourage the "Near enough is good enough" attitude that is so prevalent in Australia, in defence terms it is clear the message never got through, near enough is not good enough.
 
 
 
Quote    Reply

BLUIE006       3/1/2009 8:06:57 AM
Cant resist an opportunity to make a list http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emteeth.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" alt="" /> -  here is a few ideas for ye all to critique
 
 
1. FB-22 ( although currently a pipe dream) certainly fits the Silver bullet tag, unlike the F-35 it is not likely to be marketed to everyone. [ Australia & UK being the possible exceptions] - this of course would depend on US administration and variety of factors.
 
2.Taranis Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle (UCAV)
 
3.Joint Air to Surface Stand off Missile (JASSM) / Joint Surface to Surface Missile (JSSM-ER) (Sub & Ship)
[ JSSM-ER potentially could be stealth spin off of the Tomahawk (maybe hypersonic)]
 
4. Railguns on RAN ships
 
5. SSGN - 150 Cruise missiles & SAS teams
 
6. GMLRS
 
6. Lightweight 7.62mm Individual Combat Weapon 
 
7. 60mm/120 mm Mortar systems & XM395 Precision Guided Mortar Munition (PGMM)
 
8. Full Size Carrier Battle Group.
 
 
 
Quote    Reply

Aussie Diggermark 2       3/1/2009 8:08:57 AM

DB I'm not talking about having a little bit of an edge but having such overwhelming overmatch that most fights will never happen.

 

Our current subs are good but there are subs being bought and entering service in the region that will be a serious threat to them well before they are retired.  Building six boats and then waiting 20 years to build a replacement is the perfect method to ensure our submarine arm will be out classed.  Think of the COLLINS class in automotive terms, we bought VN SS Commodores in 1988 while Malaysia has just bought some nice new Renault Megane Sports, our Commies still have the edge in some areas but overall are out of warranty.  What will it be like when Indonesia gets their new Skodas?

 

I should add that when we ordered our legacy Bugs in 1982 it never crossed our minds that the US would be selling better gear, i.e.  F-16C, F/A-18D and F-15E to our near and some not so near neighbours.

 

Basically we are buying gear that is good enough for today and will probably get by tomorrow but will struggle next week.  We need to be spending our money in ways that will see us through the long term.  This is as opposed to having panic spends as gear wears out and becomes completely out moded or even dangerous to its users.

 

There used to be an add campaign to discourage the "Near enough is good enough" attitude that is so prevalent in Australia, in defence terms it is clear the message never got through, near enough is not good enough.

We have a silver bullet already that you are not even thinking about. It's the quality of our troops/airmen/sailors and the availability and hence sortie rates our major platforms can generate, in addition to the individual platforms superiority.
 
The Malaysia Air Force is finding out that the availability rates of it's latest and greatest and apparently ever so frightening SU-30's are about 30 per cent of it's 12 year old F/A-18D fleet. Indonesia's are likely to be worse. Russian technicians need to fly out with parts every single time TNI-AU Sukhois become unserviceable and despite this, the aircraft are STILL ordered. The well-known story of how Russia attempts to match the reliability of Western jet engine designs is hilarious. (They provide 3x as many engines!)  
 
Australia's Air Combat elements are better supported than Malaysias, will be of newer designs that are more easily supported and even being extremely conservative, this equates to a sortie rate at least 50% greater than the RMAF can manage from the SAME amount of aircraft. The fact that we possess roughly 3x times the number of operational platforms on TOP of this sortie rate advantage is where the silver bullet effect you think is indecisive is TRULY present.
 
Indonesia's and Vietnams are likely to be worse.
 
You want a silver bullet force that's fine. I want aircraft that can be put into the air at 2-3 times the rate that of any likely enemy...
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
Quote    Reply

DropBear       3/1/2009 10:57:42 PM
Basically we are buying gear that is good enough for today and will probably get by tomorrow but will struggle next week.  We need to be spending our money in ways that will see us through the long term.  This is as opposed to having panic spends as gear wears out and becomes completely out moded or even dangerous to its users.
 
Well, I think the AIR6000 project has/will delivered/deliver strike jets that run rings around anything our impoverished near neighbours are likely to field within at least another decade or so. I doubt Philipines will get Gripen to replace F-5 types and what I have seen of Thailand, Burma, Malaysia, Vietnam, Brunei, Indonesia etc etc etc isn't particularly bothersome on the aviation front. Scrap metal 1960's era jets without support/training or weapons to match RAAF SH/JSF doesn't really keep me awake at night.
 
There used to be an add campaign to discourage the "Near enough is good enough" attitude that is so prevalent in Australia, in defence terms it is clear the message never got through, near enough is not good enough.
 
No worries. I just wasn't sure whether we were talking practical or fantasy.
 
I would be happy to spend obscene amounts of tax on building brand new production F-23 Black Widows to be used as Bug/Pig replacements though. Would even go so far as to simply use the 1990 gen of GE powerplants and existing era avionics to keep costs down.
 
Now back to reality...
 
http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emsmiled.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" alt="" />
 
Quote    Reply

DropBear       3/1/2009 11:00:44 PM
....we bought VN SS Commodores in 1988 while Malaysia has just bought some nice new Renault Megane Sports,...
 
Whilst I simply can't stand Holden or any of their products, I don't think I would get too excited about driving the Migraine either. http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emwink.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" alt="" /> http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emsmilep.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" alt="" />
 
But, yeah, I get your point.
 
Quote    Reply

Volkodav       3/2/2009 5:59:34 AM

....we bought VN SS Commodores in 1988 while Malaysia has just bought some nice new Renault Megane Sports,...

 

Whilst I simply can't stand Holden or any of their products, I don't think I would get too excited about driving the Migraine either. http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emwink.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" /> http://www.strategypage.com/CuteSoft_Client/CuteEditor/Images/emsmilep.gif" align="absMiddle" border="0" />

 

But, yeah, I get your point.

Not a fan myself but coming from the home of Holden they tend to fall easily into any automotive analogies I make.

 
I suppose the other way to look at it is how much valuable service we got out of our previous silver bullets, platforms that gave us regional superiority for decades.
 
Our carriers, the DDG's, Oberons and now Collins Class subs, Centurion MBT's, M-113 APC's, F-111 and even the the F/A-18A all provided regional over match for far longer than the people who ordered them could ever have imagined.  The thing is they all had (or have) use by dates where they lose their edge or just plain wear out.  Unfortunately we have, for the most part, failed to maintain equivalent capability let alone aim to increase our edge.
 
The thing is our neighbours are wealthier and more sophisticated than they used to be, they can afford more and are better able to make effective use of it.  I am not saying that there are any direct threats to us but rather that the US (light) structure we have maintained for decades no longer gives us the edge it once did.  We need to do more to maintain the advantage we used to enjoy, not less.
 
AD, I agree our people are one of our greatest strengths, the issue is we struggle to to recruit or retain enough of them to man the gear we have.  While 100 to 150 F-35's would be great what good would they be if we can't crew them?  If we only have enough pilots for 50 fighters then wouldn't going for F-22's (if they were available) be more effective?  Part of the reason I am suggesting/asking about Silver bullets is I am very well away of the fact that we will never beable to compete on numbers in the long term, we need to go for quality.
 
Quote    Reply

Aussiegunneragain       3/2/2009 6:56:08 AM


AD, I agree our people are one of our greatest strengths, the issue is we struggle to to recruit or retain enough of them to man the gear we have.  While 100 to 150 F-35's would be great what good would they be if we can't crew them?  If we only have enough pilots for 50 fighters then wouldn't going for F-22's (if they were available) be more effective?  Part of the reason I am suggesting/asking about Silver bullets is I am very well away of the fact that we will never beable to compete on numbers in the long term, we need to go for quality.

If we could only crew 50 F-35's the result would still be the same as if we had F-22's, we would wipe the floor with any
SU-XX equipped regional adversary. What are they serously going to do about a flight of Lightnings romping over undetected and destroying 8 of their aircraft shelters with SDB's a piece? We may as well save the cash and spend it on something else.
 
But FYI, we can usually provide about 60pilots and however many F-111 crews on top of that, so I think you are being a bit pessimistic.

 
Quote    Reply

Aussiegunneragain       3/2/2009 7:00:40 AM

I actually think a genetically engineered rice killing superbug might be the best silver bullet given the standard diet in our region and our surplus agricultural produce ("let them eat wheat"), but that might be being just a bit nasty.

 
Quote    Reply

Volkodav       3/3/2009 2:51:12 AM
Come on guys, give me a break, I am bored and trying to get some entertaining / intellectual discussion going.
 
I need something to keep my brain ticking over as I am required to check it out when at work.
 
Quote    Reply
1 2 3   NEXT



 Latest
 News
 
 Most
 Read
 
 Most
 Commented
 Hot
 Topics