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✅ The Protective Ground Posture (PPT)

Land Forces Doctrine Review
History & strategy
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A joint posture adaptable to the level of threat, the TPP covers all the measures taken by the armed forces as part of the strategic function of "protection" for the land environment. It is organised on the basis of the existing system, in particular the OTIAD chain, and aims to propose a different sequencing for reaction, particularly in the event of a major crisis on national territory (NT). It is part of the CEMA's "renewed strategy".


Multiplethreats .

At the operational level, the attacks that have occurred in France since 2015 have had several consequences for the armed forces:

- commitments are now more sustainable and focused on the security domain;

- the ability to coordinate with other actors in the TN becomes essential;

- in the face of threats, it is necessary to be able to intervene rapidly in any place, and to be able to establish a favourable balance of power from the outset and, if necessary, simultaneously at different points.

Theneed for coherence.

In order to take into account the evolution of the threat and the constraints mentioned, while preserving the freedom of action of political decision-makers, armies must reconcile three strategic imperatives:

- to participate more effectively in the protection of our citizens while continuing to honour our external commitments;

- maintain this level of commitment over the long term.

These imperatives give rise to three operational requirements both in metropolitan France and overseas:

- increased responsiveness at various levels. The armed forces, with the support of the directorates and joint services (DSIA), must be able to intervene rapidly and at any time, outside of the alert regime;

- optimising the use of military capabilities;

- interoperability with internal security forces (ISF) and civil security forces (FSC).

These issues have justified the need to formalise the action of armies in the land environment on the TN in the context of a new operational posture, the Land Protection Posture (LPP). It is coordinated and consistent with the permanent air security posture (PPS-A) and the permanent maritime safeguard posture (PPS-M) and is part of the existing legal framework and the security/defence continuum.

The PPT, a mechanism offering operational flexibility

Operating in the land environment, the PPT covers all the permanent or temporary measures taken by the armed forces in the framework of the strategic "protection" function, in the national territory, in metropolitan France and overseas. In an environment where the armed forces are competing, the PPT's aim and ambition is to optimise the armed forces' response to requests for assistance in the field of defence.In an environment where the armed forces are competing, the PPT's aim and ambition is to optimise the armed forces' response to civil defence requests, or even within the framework of military defence, by making an appropriate and reactive contribution to the State's resilience, particularly in the event of a major crisis in the North.

As the foundation of the PPT, the reinforced resilience of the ADSs conditions their commitments in the NT, while contributing to the resilience of the Nation. Moreover, given the reality of a long-term commitment to TN, it is now essential for the armed forces to acquire an operational culture of commitment in this specific theatre:

- by encouraging the emergence of a state of mind of vigilance, resilience and responsiveness, including at the garrison level;

- by developing the capacity to switch efforts, to deliver an effect as quickly as possible by manoeuvre and, if necessary, by fire.

A graduated response in line with alogic of effects.

With the aim of increasing the tactical and operational efficiency of the armed forces in the TN, the implementation of the TPP presents a staggered articulation of capabilities backed by adjusted support.

In concrete terms, this mechanism offers extended reactivity to the zone prefects and the OGZDS, in addition to the protection mechanism in place in the major urban centres:

- units engaged in protection missions, under OPCOM of the CEMA:

  • forces engaged in domestic missions under requisition, in support of or in addition to the ISF and FSC, including first and foremost, Sentinel;
  • sovereignty forces, under the orders of the COMSUP;
  • alert resources in application of the armed forces' operational contract54 ;

- pre-deployed forces in operational preparation, capable of intervening in "reflex time", in particular through the increased dissuasive and reactive presence provided by the deployment of units in PO-D55.

- the ENU56in reserve, capabilities to be deployed in "delayed time" in the event of a major national crisis. This third tier of the TPP is the breeding ground for generating reinforcements for the benefit of two other tiers. Pre-identified by each army, these capabilities will most often be secured from the resources of units already deployed outside the garrison, in operational preparation on "business" structures and equipment.


A civil-militarydialogue tobe intensified.

The armed forces, by their very nature competing in the TN, act as a complement to or in support of the ISF and FSC. Interoperability between the different forces and the interministerial approach therefore condition any engagement in this complex environment.

The implementation of the POD mechanism will contribute to this in a very concrete way:

- at the local level, through the exchange of information and interaction with the ISPs and local authorities;

- at the central and zonal levels, through permanent civil-military dialogue aimed at identifying "areas of interest" where units will mark their tactical effort.

As part of the anticipation of commitments and interoperability, the PPT promotes coordination with all actors acting on the NR. This translates into the organisation of experiments, exercises, inter-service, inter-postures and joint planning actions. It also involves the elaboration of common procedures and employment documents. For the Army, TN COM is at the heart of the organisation of this dialogue.

52 Excerpts in whole or in part from letter 506468/ARM/EMAT/OAT/BEMP/DR of 13 July 2017.

53 The perimeter of the PPT covers only part of the "defence-security" function of the armies, namely the protection of installations, activities and personnel, as well as the continuity of the armies' operational activities in the land part of the TN.

54 Hephaestos, EOD, SIC, CBRN, HL SATER, GIH, GIR cyber, TSIA .

55 The dual operational readiness system (PO-D) provides for the pooling of open terrain training of army units applying targeted operational effects, while providing a zonal response capability.

56 ENU: joint alert force articulated in 3 levels (FIA, FIRI, FIA) respectively deployable in 48 hours, 5 days and 10 days, on the TN or in external operations.

Title : ✅ The Protective Ground Posture (PPT)
Author (s) : Colonel François-Xavier Moreau, COM TN