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The Land Power Forum blog is published by the Australian Army Research Centre in order to generate discussion and debate about the future of Army.

It is a forum for informed analysis, commentary, thoughts and ideas. Contributions are welcomed from stakeholders, subject matter experts and those interested in future land warfare.

A map of Borneo showing an overview of the Oboe operations (Source: Macarthur Reports)
What can the Australian Army learn from the 1945 Borneo Oboe operations?
Landpower lessonsAmphibious/joint/interagency

Alexander Lenart reflects on the benefits of participating in the Australian Army Staff Ride to Borneo. He finds that the lessons learned from the 1945 Oboe operations still resonate today.

Army's new Tactical Uncrewed Aerial System, the Integrator, quietly soars through the air during 20th Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery's operator training course in Coominya, Qld, on 28 July 2022.
The Robotic Revolution
ModernisationRobotics & Autonomous SystemsIndustryAccelerated Preparedness

This LPF Post considers the possibilities presented by autonomy and robotics. Author Jerimy Tucker considers how these technologies can reduce organisational burden by increasing the effectiveness and preparedness of land forces.

A United States Army M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) fires in Puslatpur, Indonesia during Exercise Super Garuda Shield 2023.
Fires in the Fourth Industrial Revolution
ModernisationEmerging Threats and OpportunitiesArtificial Intelligence

The fourth industrial revolution has heralded an era of artificial intelligence, automation and robotics with considerable potential benefits to the Australian Army. Jason Kirkham examines this proposition with a focus on Army's indirect fires and targeting responsibilities.

Drones flying above an enemy position demonstrate in concept surveillance (green), electronic warfare (blue), and attack (orange) capabilities during a human-machine team exercise at Puckapunyal Military Area.
Economies of Scale Provided by Automated Solutions
ModernisationEmerging TechnologiesRobotics & Autonomous SystemsAccelerated Preparedness

Adam Wawrzkowicz makes the case for an ADF equipped with high-impact, low cost capabilities able to achieve asymmetric strategies. He focusses on the benefits of deliberate deception support by robotics and autonomous systems.

Australian Army Aircrewman, Corporal Stewart Eddleston looks out over floodwaters in the Kimberley region of Western Australia from an MRH-90 Taipan helicopter.
Enhancing Resilience
Army in MotionModernisationEmerging Threats and OpportunitiesAccelerated Preparedness

This is the first entry to the AARC Short Thoughts Competition Spring Edition that focuses on the topic of mobilisation. In this submission, James Alexander considers the cumulative effect of seemingly innocuous events on national security. He challenges the ADF to generate a common operating picture to meet the threat of indirect attacks from adversaries.

V9905007 "OPERATION STABILISE" 2 OCT 99 Pic by SGT W. Guthrie LCPL Ross Peters of Hobart, Tasmania, and PTE Paul Everett of WA provide outer perimeter protection for members of A Company, 3 RAR, 1 Platoon conducting a building clearance in Dili.
‘Holding the Door Open’ – Securing a Point of Entry to Facilitate Littoral Manoeuvre in the Near Region’ - Part Four
Amphibious/joint/interagencyEmerging Threats and OpportunitiesHybrid Warfare

In Part Four of the AARC series on littoral manoeuvre, Charles Knight discusses the personnel-intensive requirements of deploying a perimeter of detection when securing Air or Sea Points of Entry.

Australian Army soldiers from the 1st Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment conduct a raid on the Urban Operations Training Facility as a part of Exercise Sea Raider.
‘Holding the Door Open’ – Securing a Point of Entry to Facilitate Littoral Manoeuvre in the Near Region’ - Part Three
Amphibious/joint/interagencyHybrid WarfareEmerging Threats and Opportunities

Gaining and retaining a secure Air or Sea Point of Entry (APOE/SPOE) is a critical Army enabling function for the Integrated Force to execute ‘anti-access/area denial’ (A2/AD) in the littoral as directed by the Defence Strategic Review. In Part 3 of the Land Power Forum's focus on littoral manoeuvre, Charles Knight sets out to explain why a conventional POE security operation needs significantly great numbers on urban terrain.

Occasional Paper 17 in foreground on left half of image; background is a map of South-East Asia with routes and markers (the image from the cover of OP 17).
Occasional Paper 17 released - Southeast Asia’s Security Landscape
Regional politicsEmerging Threats and OpportunitiesOur Region

Australian policymakers have long recognised that the resilience of Southeast Asia, as a region bordering the nation’s northern approaches, is fundamental to Australia’s national security. This AARC Occasional Paper examines how the Australian defence community, with its extensive array of networks in Southeast Asia, can best engage the region in the years ahead.

Small form factor MEMS Gravimeter developed at the University of Glasgow [2].
Subterranean detection using gravity
Quantum TechnologyEmerging Technologies

Recent developments in the South China Sea show that atolls can be converted into military installations. Tracking militarisation on larger islands where structures can be concealed within headlands and underground poses a challenge.
One possible technology to assist in solving this challenge is advanced gravitational sensors. Gravity sensors measure the acceleration defect due to variations in the nearby mass density of the earth.

Australian Army Sergeant Jasmine Johnston reads over Operation RENDER SAFE 14 safety messages with Bougainville Police Officers Simon Sireung and his wife Lynn, during a community engagement activity in the Torokina District.
We are the Training Audience
Our RegionPeople, Culture and EthicsRegional politicsTrain, Advise and Assist

In this part one of a two part LPF Post, Mark Mankowski examines the littoral manoeuvre capability with reference to the Defence Strategic Review. He considers the importance to the integrated force and provides an alternative definition, similar to the concept of ‘archipelagic manoeuvre’, which he submits better reflects the capability envisaged by the DSR.

An Australian Army rifleman from the 6th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment jumps in the a ‘bear pit’ during the obstacle course as part of the final battle run on Exercise Viper Strike at Gallipoli Barracks, Queensland.
AARC Short Thoughts Competition – Spring Series 2023
Accelerated WarfareModernisationRobotics & Autonomous SystemsSpring 2023 Short Thoughts

The Australian Army Research Centre (AARC) invites your contribution to the Spring Series of the AARC Short Thoughts Competition with the theme: ‘Army’s approach to Accelerated Preparedness’. This is your opportunity to help further Australian land power debate. Submissions will be published in the Land Power Forum (LPF).

Cover of Occasional Paper 16 with cover image as background, blurred and lighter.
Occasional Paper release - Resetting the Australian Army
StrategyEmerging Threats and OpportunitiesLand combat

In Occasional Paper 16, Resetting the Australian Army, Dr Albert Palazzo identifies the key aspects of the Defence Strategic Review and their importance to Army, highlighting that the overall message is positive for the land force. Using a number of historical reviews to illustrate how Army has responded to government directed defence policy re-assessments in the past, Palazzo points to a trajectory for contemporary capability renewal.

Royal Solomon Islands Police Force Officers prepare to depart Honiara on an Australian Defence Force MRH-90 Taipan helicopter bound for the outlying provinces of Gizo, Ringii and Seghe in the Solomon Islands prior to the National Government Election.
Outcomes of ‘Winter Short Thoughts Competition’
Amphibious/joint/interagencyForce DesignOur RegionTrain, Advise and Assist

In June, the AARC launched the winter series 'Short Thoughts Competition' or Army's role in train, advise and assist missions. This Post announces the winners of that competition.

Biamu, Oro Bay, New Guinea. 1942-11-11. Gunners of the 2/5th Field Regiment unloading their 25 pounder gun at Biamu Village. This gun is being unloaded from a Japanese barge which was captured during the abortive landing attempt at Milne Bay during 1942-08/07. Source: Australian War Memorial
What is Littoral Manoeuvre? – Part Two
Amphibious/joint/interagencyForce DesignOur Region

In part two of Mark Mankowski's consideration of 'What is Littoral Manoeuvre', he draws on historical examples to learn more about what the concept means in the context of direction provided by the recent Defence Strategic Review. He proposes changes to how the ADF conceives of littoral manoeuvre operations to better inform options for a possible future Army amphibious capability.

Cover of book, The Conquering Tide by Ian W. Toll, with the cover image blurred in the background
Book Review - The Conquering Tide
Our RegionPeople, Culture and EthicsRegional politicsBook review

The Defence Strategic Review will have encouraged many in the profession of arms to review conflict in the southwest Pacific. Sam Baumgarten explains why 'The Conquering Tide' offers an accessible entry to Pacific War history from a United States perspective.

A number of officers and men from Robin Force observing the test firing of one of two six inch heavy coastal artillery guns in a battery recently completed at Ouen Toro, a position overlooking Noumea. Source: Australian War Memorial (P00308.002)
Historic Lessons for Train, Advise and Assist Missions
Landpower lessonsOur RegionStrategyTrainTrain, Advise and Assist

This Land Power Forum Post examines the conduct of train, advice and assist missions through the lens of two historic examples - the 8th Military District in 1941 and Robin Force in New Caledonia. Author James Eling finds that these experiences reinforce the importance of matching assistance with the needs of the host nation.

Private Zed Barrett (left) and Private Luke Smith (centre) assist a member of the Vanuatu Mobile Force with the unloading of dignity kits for local Vanuatu communities in Port Vila during Operation Vanuatu Assist 2023.
Building Relationships in the Indo-Pacific within a Framework of Deterrence
Our RegionCivil-Military RelationsPeople, Culture and EthicsTrain, Advise and Assist

In an uncertain strategic climate, Temma Perry underscores the value of Australian international engagement through military partnerships, training programs and assistance missions.

Australian Army officer Captain Sarah Kelly, Public Affairs Officer deployed on Pacific Partnership 2022, holds a child from the local community at Macarascas Elementary School, Palawan, Philippines.
Health as a Strategy in ADF Train, Advise and Assist Missions
Civil-Military RelationsPeople, Culture and EthicsOur RegionTrain, Advise and Assist

Amanda Plant makes the case for a targeted measles vaccination program to supplement the ADF's train, advise and assist missions.

Cover of book Foch in Command, with Ferdinand Foch (part of cover image) blurred in the backgtound
Book Review - Foch in Command
Book reviewLandpower lessonsMilitary history

Chris Roberts commends Elizabeth Greenhalgh's history of Marshal Ferdinand Foch, Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces on the Western Front in 1918. Likely to be the pre-eminent English language work on Foch for decades to come, Roberts assesses this volume as a fascinating insight into allied strategy during the war with contemporary lessons for coalition commanders.

Australian Army Private Hendrik Malherbe during an amphibious beach demonstration in Indonesia during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022.
What is Littoral Manoeuvre? – Part 1
Amphibious/joint/interagencyForce DesignOur Region

In this part one of a two part LPF Post, Mark Mankowski examines the littoral manoeuvre capability with reference to the Defence Strategic Review. He considers the importance to the integrated force and provides an alternative definition, similar to the concept of ‘archipelagic manoeuvre’, which he submits better reflects the capability envisaged by the DSR.

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