France reshuffles Army and Reserve

The ADIT research agency reports that the French military has presented a new order of battle for the French Army based on last year’s defence white paper that “sealed the fate of the Army downsizing”.

The government research body says the Army will now only boast 13 brigades, including two armoured brigades, two light armoured brigades; two mechanised brigades, a parachute brigade and a mountain infantry brigade.

Furthermore, there is to be a logistics, a “transmission”, an intelligence and a Special Forces brigade.

ADIT says the number of tanks in a Heavy Cavalry (main battle tank) regiment will be cut from 80 to 52 plus eight.

“This new organization is criticised by observers who believe that the new army format is unsatisfactory,” the ADIT says.

Separately, the MoD hopes to have an Army reserve of 20 000 men by 2015. Currently the Army reserve is around 13 500 persons “and it seems very difficult to achieve 15 000 personnel by 2015.” The ADIT did not specify the difficulties the reserve faced.