In this excellent 20 min talk from the 7 Brigade Hybrid Warfare Symposium, Dr Malcolm Davis (Senior Analyst from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute) briefs 7 Brigade officers and visitors on the implications for Australia of the US Third Offset Strategy.
You might want to ask yourself (or discuss) the following questions:
For Junior Leaders:
- Malcolm talks about ‘human-machine’ teaming. How do you think this would work for you as a section or platoon commander? Would you welcome it?
- Do you think we are relying too much on technology, or do you think we should be leaning into the opportunities?
- What do you think of the armoured / protected mobility vehicles being used by Australia? Do we need to invest in heavier vehicles, or just find innovative tactics for use?
- Most experts believe that we will increasingly fight in very large, urban areas (megacities). How do we need to adapt to be able to fight and win in these environments?
- How do we prevent our forces from being ‘found’ on the future battlefield?
For Sub Unit Command Teams:
- Do you think Army is well established for innovating at the tactical level?
- Do you think you are ‘grouped’ well at sub-unit / combat team level? Would you prefer to ‘group’ at a lower level?
- Do you think you understand the ideas of ‘combining arms’? What is the point of it?
- If you were supported by ‘human – machine’ teaming, how would you have to change your C2 structures in order to take advantage of ISR and support assets.
- What are the logistical implications of operating as part of a ‘third offset’ force? If you had to operate over very significant distances, would you be able to sustain yourself?
For Unit Command Teams:
- How might you structure an annual ‘Training and Education Plan’ in order to prepare a force for operations against both unconventional and peer adversaries.
- How would styles of leadership (and ethics) need to change to take into account ‘human / machine’ teaming?
- Dr Davis mentions nuclear deterrence and tactical nuclear weapons at various stages. Is this scaremongering, or do we need to reinvest in this area?
- Do you think ‘Hybrid Warfare’ is a useful term? Isn’t all warfare ‘hybrid’?
For Senior Leaders:
- What are the implications for Australian strategy if the US military grows significantly in the next decade?
- How might Army maintain a ‘knowledge and speed’ advantage over potential adversaries?
- How might Army change its procurement processes to gain ‘tempo’ against potential adversaries?
- What might be the optimal Australian contribution to a US ‘Third Offset’ force?
- Is it realistic to train an Australian Combat Brigade for both unconventional and peer adversaries?
- Is Australian industry established to support any form of Australian ‘Third Offset’?
- How do we overcome the ‘ethics gap’ between Australia and potential adversaries?