This is rather fun

The Army could phase out petrol and diesel vehicles in a bid to attract ecofriendly recruits, the Chief of the General Staff has said.

Gen Sir Mark Carleton-Smith said today’s military equipment would probably be the last to be “dependent on fossil fuel engines”, and that a move toward clean energy would be beneficial logistically and put the military “on the right side of the environmental argument”.

Fun in an appalling manner, of course.

We can all see the logistical benefits of not having to have tankers of derv or LPG following the tanks around. But there might be that slight worry that trucks of batteries aren’t going to be much better. And fill up times, well, there’s a problem.

But that an actual General is talking about the environmental argument, when did that happen?

34 thoughts on “This is rather fun”

  1. Bloke in North Dorset

    Instead they’ll be dragging round large diesel generators to charge the batteries.

    Given the timescales to specify, develop, test etc new equipment we’re talking a lot of years from now.

  2. Why would an eco warrior (sic) ever want to join an organization where the day job involves blowing the environment up?

  3. Blowing people up is just fine and fully in accordance with our two new religions du jour.

    But doing it an environmentally friendly way really ticks all the boxes.

    If those killed happenned to be Jewish the whole House would be clamouring for you to get a life peerage.

    No nukes, obviously.

  4. “But that an actual General is talking about the environmental argument, when did that happen?”

    When that Long March through the institutions finally reached its destination. About 5 years ago.

  5. I look forward to the day when the nation is defended by women, deranged trannies*, 100 lb vegans and the morbidly obese. In battery-driven helicopters.

    Although by then, there won’t be much worth fighting for.

    *although as noted here previously, never pick a fight with a man crazy enough to have his cock lopped off

  6. Given how long the army keeps its kit for (how long were they using Bedford trucks for?) the current gear will still be in use in our grandkids time (assuming the west hadn’t collapsed by then).

    @JuliaM- indeed, there is no institution in the UK left uncolonised by the woke left, sadly.

  7. The Army could phase out weapons in a bid to attract pacifist recruits, the Chief of the General Staff has said.

    Tomorrow’s satire today.

  8. in a bid to attract ecofriendly recruits

    Why would the Army want/need to do this? They are highly likely to also have political opinions completely hostile to the concept of an army and even the West, so unless you are a cultural Marxist desperate to destroy the organisation you have wormed your way into, why would you want them?

  9. There is the tale, quite likely apocryphal, about somebody appearing in front of a US Senate committee after funding for a large scale research project.

    One of the senators, being of a military bent, asked the question “will this project contribute to the defence of the US”.

    The answer: “no, except to make it worth defending”

    Any foe facing an army of battery powered vegan lesbians would probably decide that there would be nothing worth having and go home.

  10. Remember how Obama vetoed bombing the oil tankers going from rebel Syria to Turkey, providing the funds for Isis, on environmental grounds! The Long March went all the way to the White House.

  11. The remainy lefty march will succeed for a while. But I suspect that sets us up for a populist nationalist backlash administration at some point in the future. And then the fun begins!

  12. This reflects that the army, like all the forces is overstaffed.

    If you’ve got plenty of action shooting Johnny Foreigner, you don’t piss about with stuff like this. You only do stuff like this to justify your existence with the powers that be.

    Like, where’s the threat to the country? Russia? Putin likes money, not communism. China? And stop selling us lots of iPhones? Argentina? They’re like the guy who talks shit about starting fights but doesn’t.

  13. The only comfort to take from this is that most of our proximate potential enemies are on the same insane journey as us, if not far ahead of us, so that our totally ineffectual military force will be a level playing field with them.

    Russia being the obvious exception.

  14. The “General” needs to sacked via dishonourable discharge or the UK equivalent, beaten up and his pension confiscated.

  15. Sorry, Mr Ecks, but armed forces always have a surplus of the top ranks, so that any one underperforming can be replaced at a moment’s notice: Generals, Admirals, Air Marshals and so on. And as for being nutty, that sometimes helps, as the career leaders always aim to fight the last war (only, hopefully, a little better) whereas there is a chance that the lunatic may just have the answer to the next war.

    As for the electric vehicle idea – probably not a good one, but a hybrid might just be (OK, probably not). But then who’d have thought that the IC engine would replace steam? Or horses? Complete idiocy! After all, horses can get by just eating grass …

    PS. I thought that a dishonourable discharge was something you got from shagging a German, French, or other foreign slag …

  16. Shame on you
    This is grauniad misreporting
    He said that the move to non fossil fuels ( he specifically did not mention electric power) would be good to reduce logistic drag

    Then he said it would have the additional benefit of getting on the right side of the environmental argument and potentially attract recruits

    So military capability first potential consequential advantages second

  17. Excavator Man,

    “As for the electric vehicle idea – probably not a good one, but a hybrid might just be (OK, probably not). But then who’d have thought that the IC engine would replace steam? Or horses? Complete idiocy! After all, horses can get by just eating grass …”

    And when the electric is ready, sure, switch over.

    Right now, almost none of the people in the ruthless end of capitalism, are switching to electric. There’s a pharmacy near me that uses an Electric smart car to deliver prescriptions, and I can see that makes sense. The total range is small, weight is small, stop/start travel. It’s a bit like milk floats.Everyone else is still using diesel.

    The only other good use of electric cars is for supercars, where an electric motor improves acceleration. Why anyone is buying these mid-range cars with shitty range and long charge times, I have no idea.

    And when you’ve got Pigou taxes (as we have), the military and everyone else shouldn’t give a shit about the environment. That’s been factored into the cost of diesel.

  18. BoM4;

    Sure, it makes sense for local delivery to use a smaller vehicle with a lower range and thus a smaller battery; ie. Royal Mail, but others as well, so DPD, DHL and the like.

    With a smaller battery, the charge time should be shorter, and I would imagine that swapping them out would be easier as well. And for those firms utilising fleets of vehicle, the charging would be easier to organise – the things always end up back at the depot overnight.

    With a shorter range for each vehicle, you would probably need to create smaller, more local depots, which then means that for someone like Amazon, they can push high volume or perishable stuff out closer to the edge of the network; for Consignia, closing all the post office branches now looks a bit silly.

    Amazon are dicking around with the locker concept, but post offices aren’t the only branch network being shut down.

    It’s been on my mind for a while now (ever since RM ‘upgraded’ the local fleet to ‘eco-friendly’ vans – mainly Fiats and Peugeots – that have issues with the stop/start aspect) as to why this hasn’t happened – yet.

  19. I have a BMW i3 and a gas guzzling Range Rover. Any journey over 80 miles or so (ie 40 out and 40 back) – it’s the Range Rover. Wife’s commute, local shopping, fiddling about – it’s all the i3. We’re saving about £3,000 a year on diesel. It doesn’t fully pay for itself. But as a local runabout an electric car is a hoot. They’re only really viable as second cars.

  20. There’s a presumption going on here, the purpose of the Army is defence of the realm. I’d submit that this has probably only been true in the period 39-45. Mostly, since at least the Napoleonic Wars, the primary purpose of the army has been the defence of the army. Primarily it’s senior ranks. Junior officer ranks are needed as an entry portal but the ordinary soldier is an unwanted encumbrance. Although they do make cheap servants & look pretty in parades.
    Equipment is just part of the dressing, keeps the whole charade believable.

  21. I actually think the general has a point there…

    Look , war isnt the place where you worry about the Environment. There’s other rather pressing matters going on right then.
    But in peacetime an army is a Big Expensive Thing populated by people who have made violence and killing their actual job.. Which tends to make politicians nervous..

    Now the general would know all too well ( or would be rapidly informed so..) that there simply is no way to power the modern hitty-killing stuff with anything other than fossil fuel, or nuclear conversion. You simply *need* a huge energy-to-weight ratio for your power source to make the Toys go where they’re needed and go *boom* .
    But not all, if most military equipment, used on a daily basis even in peacetime needs that raw power. It can do with a lot less. And as such can be “Eco-Friendly” . Or made to be so. Might actually give some ideas to make the logistics part ( which actually wins wars..) a bit easier… Who knows?

    If it attracts “eco-friendly” recruits… All the better.. You’re talking people signing up that are willing to fight for a Cause, want to receive formal training in applied violence, and are part of , or at least sympathetic to, a major Anti movement.
    And you got them right where you can keep an eye on them….

  22. @Patrick

    I have a Mitsubishi Outlander (plug-in hybrid) which gives me the best of both these worlds. Quite a few folk round here (the Chilterns) have pure electrics (Leafs and Teslas), but without exception they always have a second (ICE powered) car.

  23. You’ve got to admit, though, the idea of earnest, fey hipsters lying in cold, dirty ditches at 3am awaiting that first flare or fluorescent-tipped night round is quite funny.

  24. “But that an actual General is talking about the environmental argument, when did that happen?”

    In America, 10 years ago. But our flag and general officers still put a little emphasis on actual combat ability so they were talking about things like biofuels (abandoned by the Navy because they’re too corrosive over time) and consolidating battery types and pushing out solar cells to help take the load off of *fixed* installations.

    They know better than to expect that being able to run even support vehicles off batteries isn’t practical right now – and they certainly wouldn’t be considering it to garner more ‘green’ recruits. I mean, FFS, the sort of idiot that is worried about what is powering an LTV is also the sort of idiot that will come out as transgender, homosexual, and, worst of all, a conscientious objector – on top of having to spend half of each day at sick call.

  25. General is bonkers. Batteries have ~1% of the energy by weight as petrol/diesel.

    Challenger 4 MBT will weigh ~300 tons

    @Patrick September 13, 2019 at 1:59 pm

    We’re saving about £3,000 a year on diesel.

    Have you factored in higher initial cost and high depreciation – TCO?

  26. Luckily for the UK, the German generals are just as crazy.

    Aren’t they?

    Unfortunately for the UK, the Russian generals are not crazy at all. Other than being Russian of course.

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