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The Pathfinder N°33

NOVEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°32

NOVEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°31

SEPTEMBER 2020

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The Scout N°30

SEPTEMBER 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°29

JUNE 2020

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The Scout N°28

MARCH 2020

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L'Eclaireur N°27

FEBRUARY 2020

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The Scout N°26

DECEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°25

DECEMBER 2019

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L'Eclaireur N°24

DECEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°23

NOVEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°22

NOVEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°21

OCTOBER 2019

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The Scout N°20

OCTOBER 2019

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The Scout N°19

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°18

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°17

SEPTEMBER 2019

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The Scout N°16

JULY 2019

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The Scout N°15

JUNE 2019

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The Scout N°14

JUNE 2019

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The Pathfinder is a technology watch focused on topics of interest for forward-looking studies on air-land operations, currently being conducted by the Command Doctrine and Training Centre (CDEC). This document is based solely on unclassified sources. Its purpose is to provide a quick bi-monthly overview of the information disseminated in the media.s and likely to be of interest to the defense community. The briefs collected are limited to raw summaries of the documents analysed and cross-checked whenever possible by interviews conducted by its editors. It is therefore up to each reader to contextualise this information, particularly when it comes from official foreign sources, according to the use he or she wishes to make of it and the nature of the conclusions that he or she must draw from it.

"U.S. Army accelerates its efforts to field directed-energy and hypersonic weapon prototypes."

Defence Blog, 11 June 2019



(single source)


TheUS Army Press Service recently confirmed the institution's willingness to accelerate its efforts to deploy a prototype directed energy weapon by 2022, followed in 2023 by its hypersonic counterpart. Integrated on a modified Stryker vehicle, the 50 kilowatt Multi-Mission High Energy Laser would be able to provide short-range protection against drones, helicopters, as well as rocket, artillery shell and mortar fire. In parallel, theUS Army is expected to deploy a four-vehicle battery with long-range hypersonic weapons the following year. Four Heavy Tactical Expanded Mobility Tactical Trucks (HEMTTS), linked to the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System 7.0 command and control system currently equipping US artillerymen, would each carry two hypersonic weapon systems. The increased effort is part of the US Army's modernization plan.

Availability: 2022/2023

"General Dynamics contracted for next generation artillery ammunition prototype."

Defence Blog, 7 June 2019



(single source)


General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems (GD-OTS), the aerospace and defence arm of the General Dynamics Group, has been awarded a $15 million contract to develop a prototype 155 mm artillery round for theUS Army, the XM1113 Rocket-Assisted Projectile (RAP). The study is part of the US Army's Long Range Precisions Fires (LRPF) modernization program, which will enable the US Army's current field artillery systems to deliver fires up to 40 km (CAESAR equivalent) with this new ammunition, a 30% increase in range compared to its predecessor, the M549A1 shell. Fired from the future American extended-range artillery gun (ERCA), the XM1113 ammunition could be capable of delivering fire up to 70 km. This ammunition will be co-produced with the company Thales Australia. This official announcement echoes a brief article published on 27 May 2019 in L'Éclaireur number 13.

Availability : N/A

"Russia Says S-400 Defense System Will Be Delivered to NATO-member Turkey in July"

Vitaly Nevar, Reuters , June 11, 2019



(single source)



The special adviser to Russian President Yuri Ushakov announced on Tuesday 11 June that the delivery of Russian S400 defence systems to Turkish forces will take place in July. The United States has threatened to withdraw Turkey from the partnership on the F35 multi-mission fighter if the deal goes ahead. Washington also announced the suspension of Turkish F35 pilot training in Arizona.

Availability : N/A

Unveiling ofIran's "15 - Khordad"air defense system"

i24news, June 9, 2019



(single source)


Iranian Defence Minister Amir Hatami presented the new 15-Khordad air defence system. It would be capable of intercepting opposing aircraft at a distance of 120 km, locating sneaky targets in 85 km zones and destroying them at a distance of 45 km. The Defence Minister says that this system is intended to protect Iran against external threats.

Availability: N/A

"Increased Funding for Next-Gen Army Helos, Vehicles in Senate's NDAA."

Matthew Cox, Military, 14 Jun 2019



(single source)


The U.S. Senate has approved its version of the Pentagon budget, giving greater emphasis to the funding of the armed forces' future armoured vehicles and helicopters, as well as infantry support weapons. The Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act for $750 billion in funding by 2020. This vote sees a substantial increase in budgets for development and modernization programs. One example is the proposed budget for theUS Army 's Future Vertical Lift program of $254.6 million, $9 million more than the amount requested. There is also a significant increase in the budget allocated (an additional $40 million) to the Next Generation Combat Vehicle (NGCV ), which will replace the Bradley in the coming years.

Availability : N/A

"New technology to enhance air defense"
I-HLS, 16 June 2019



(source cross-checking)


The Marine Corps has just awarded a $958 million contract to Northrop Grumman for the purchase of an air defence radar system. This system, the G/ATOR - Gallium Nitride-Based (GaN) AN/TPS-80 Ground/Air Task-Oriented Radar - provides 360-degree coverage to identify and track missiles, manned and unmanned aerial vehicles, rockets, mortars or artillery munitions. Specifically, the G/ATOR is planned to replace five different systems, said Major General Steven W. Busby, Deputy Commander in Chief of Marine Corps Development Command. This will significantly reduce training, maintenance and logistics costs. While the range is not specified, as well as the specific equipment that will be connected to it, the G/ATOR is intended to facilitate air deconfliction, short-range air defence, counter-battery fire and target acquisition.

Availability : immediate

"New Reconnaissance Platform is Approaching Completion"
I-HLS, 16 June 2019



(source cross-checking)


The Gladiator II 4x4, produced by Inbra Terrestre, should soon complete its test phase to meet the requirements of the Brazilian Army. This vehicle has been designed to be engaged both in conventional combat operations and for use by internal security forces. The latter were already equipped with its predecessor, the 4x4 Gladiator I, developed from 2008 onwards exclusively for police missions. The Gladiator II is heavier than its predecessor and weighs almost 9.2 tons. Its ballistic protection meets NATO STANAG 4569 Level 2 standards (i.e. 7.62 fired at 30 m, or a 155 mm explosive shell at 80 m) and its speed has been increased. The vehicle also carries one tonne of payload and carries five combatants, for a range of 500 km. It is designed to be modular and configurable to carry out various missions: reconnaissance, forward observation post, command post, anti-tank, mortar, radar, medical evacuation or electronic warfare.

Availability: N/A

[Video] "Makers for Heroes4th edition

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 14 June 2019



(single source)


The fourth edition of "Makers for Heroes" took place in Tel Aviv from 21 to 23 May 2019. This event, organized by the Israeli associations Tom and Restart, brought together more than 250 volunteers (engineers, contractors, designers) divided into 18 teams each supervising a wounded soldier, including a French non-commissioned officer for this edition. The aim was to enable wounded soldiers from all over the world to regain a normal quality of life. To achieve this, the volunteers used a range of equipment (3D printers, scanners, laser cutting system, etc.) to help them.) available atImpact Labs , the Israeli technological innovation center.

Availability : N/A

CDEC International Forum: "The Principles of Warfare to 2035"

CDEC, June 12-13, 2019



(single source)


The Command Doctrine and Teaching Centre, in close cooperation with the French Institute of International Relations, organised a forum on the theme of the principles of war in 2035 on 12 and 13 June. On the occasion of this meeting, 19 countries and organizations were represented by more than 70 senior and general officers. The operational environment envisaged in 2035 raises the question of whether the principles inherited from the military thinkers of previous centuries will continue to be upheld. This forum was structured around a closed seminar on the morning of 12-13 June and a colloquium on prospective reflection on the afternoon of 13 June. The latter was closed by Major General Patrick Bréthous, Deputy Head of Air-Land Operations at EMAT.

Availability : N/A

"European Intervention Initiative: dialogue to build tomorrow's strategic culture"

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 17 June 2019



(single source)


The Political Directors of the ten signatory states of the European Intervention Initiative (EII), a European operational cooperation framework separate from the European Union and NATO, met on 11 June for a working meeting. This was the second meeting of the political directors after an initial event in November and also follows the second working meeting of the deputy chiefs of staff for operations held on 23 May and led by Lieutenant General Grégoire de Saint-Quentin. Charged with a twofold challenge, this stage was aimed at taking stock of the first phase of the IEI and consolidating the objectives for the next meeting of ministers in the Netherlands in September.

Availability : N/A

"For its tenth anniversary, the French Cybersecurity Authority shows its ambitions."

Kévin Poireault, Industries and Technologies, June 5, 2019



(single source)


The French national agency for the security of information systems (ANSSI) celebrated its tenth anniversary on 4 June this year by organising a cyber festival in the twelfth arrondissement of Paris. It was an opportunity for its director general, Guillaume Poupard, to present the agency's main orientations for the coming years. These are based on three specific areas: training, co-construction and the use of technical data by third parties. The agency also highlighted its approach to the qualification and certification of cybersecurity solutions from private players, which began in 2010 and which it wishes to continue in the future. Finally, the ANSSI, which currently has 600 employees, will increase its workforce, with around 50 new recruits per year planned over the next few years.

Availability : N/A

"National Service universel : 2 000 youngsters test it this Monday"

Ministry of the Interior, 17 June 2019.



(single source)


Monday 17 June marks the start of the universal national service (UNS) test period in 13 departments. Open to young people aged 15-16, the SNU is expected to be generalized to the 800,000 young people in a given age group by 2026. This year's course will bring together 2,000 boys and girls for 12 days. Activities will include a health check-up, a French language and numeracy test. Young people will be made aware of ecology, defence and Europe. This course will be followed by a general interest mission throughout the year in, for example, fire or police units.

Availability : N/A

"Signing Ceremony for the Framework Agreement on SCAF, the Air Combat System of the Future."

Ministry of the Armed Forces, 17 June 2019



(single source)


The French Minister of the Armed Forces, Florence Parly, and her two German and Spanish counterparts signed a framework agreement at Le Bourget on Monday 17 June, legally committing the three nations to the construction of the air combat system of the future (SCAF). The SCAF should enter into service in the armed forces by 2040. On this occasion, a full-scale model, the result of the project's initial technological decisions, was unveiled.

Availability : 2040

"Equipment, the other challenge of counterterrorism"
Defence News, 13 June 2019



(single source)


Accompanied by the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces, General François Lecointre, the Minister of the Armed Forces Florence Parly went to Pau on Thursday 13 June to meet the three components (air, land, sea) of the Special Operations Command (COS). The Minister returned, in particular, to the necessary adaptation of "(...) our own innovation cycles to develop our means of detection, protection and sometimes even destruction". Mention was made of the role of the Defence Innovation Agency (DIA), which coordinates initiatives at the national level, as well as the Innovation Defence Lab, which is supposed to make processes more flexible and accelerate them. Florence Parly focused, among other things, on cyber action, as well as jamming and detection means against improvised explosive devices, and high altitude surveillance balloons. As recalled at the SOFINS 2019 exhibition, where the CDEC was present, the COS represents a real breeding ground for tests and innovations. The Minister thus indicated that "the special forces (...) will fully play their well-established role as a state-of-the-art laboratory in a hostile environment".

Availability : N/A

"The U.S. Army and the Battle for Baghdad Lessons Learned - And Still to Be Learned"

David E. Johnson, Agnes Gereben Schaefer, June 2019



(single source)



The RAND Corporation has published a review of the experience of the Battle of Baghdad in 2003. This document aims to update the lessons already learned from thisUS Army engagement. Taking up the entire planning process and operations conducted up to the withdrawal of troops, the researchers have drawn up a list of recommendations to be followed for similar engagements. Among these, the paper places particular emphasis on the concept of mass and information literacy as decisive factors of operational superiority.

Availability : N/A

"Limiting Conflictuality in Cyberspace."

Nicolas Mazzucchi, Futuribles, May 28, 2019



(single source)



While initiatives to respond to the proliferation of cyber attacks have multiplied since 2010, the failure of the UN Group of Governmental Experts on Information and Telecommunications to produce a consensus document proves that their future and effectiveness remain uncertain. States seem to be in apparent agreement on the need to lower the level of conflict in cyberspace, but they are unable to agree on the form such an agreement could take and the means to implement it. While the Geneva Cyberspace Convention, promulgated at the initiative of Microsoft, focused on the responsibility of states, the Paris Appeal for Trust and Security in Cyberspace 2018 emphasized the responsibility of private actors. According to Nicolas Mazzucchi, this issue stems from the very nature of cyberspace, which is "a public-private domain". The nature of cyber armaments and the possibilities for using this space make it difficult to set up an international control system.

Availability : N/A


"Marcel Bigeard, the death of the centurion"

Étienne De Montety, Le Figaro, 18 June 2010



(single source)



Lieutenant General Marcel Bigeard passed away on 18 June 2010. Born in 1916 in Toul, Marcel Maurice Bigeard was mobilized in 1939. This was the beginning of his long military career. Prisoner in 1940, escaped in 1941, he returned to France in 1944 as a Free France paratrooper. "Bruno" returned to Indochina in 1945. He will make several stays there until Dien Bien Phu, where he will be taken prisoner. Released in 1954, he joined Algeria in 1955 as battalion commander, still with the paratroopers. Then lieutenant-colonel, he continued to distinguish himself during numerous operations and was one of the precursors of the massive use of the helicopter, used in air assaults. He left Algeria in 1960. Promoted Brigadier General in 1967, then Major General in 1971 and finally Lieutenant General in 1974, he left the institution in 1975 to become Secretary of State for Defence. In 1978 he became deputy for Meurthe-et-Moselle until 1988, when he retired from political life. A French general and veteran of three wars, Marcel Bigeard was one of the most decorated officers in France.

"Text of the appeal of June 18, 1940"



(single source)



On 17 June 1940, at 12.20 pm, Marshal Pétain, the new head of government, announced to the French people his desire to stop fighting and negotiate with the German enemy. General de Gaulle left for London the same day with the aim of continuing the fight. On the evening of 18 June, he will launch an appeal for resistance on the BBC airwaves. He then explained the defeat of the French forces: "Infinitely more than their number, it is the tanks, the planes, the tactics of the Germans that make us retreat". Indeed, it was not for lack of men, fighting spirit or quality of equipment that the French forces were defeated, but because they were lagging behind in the field of military thinking and operational innovation. General de Gaulle then called on the French to join him to continue the fight alongside their English allies and urged them not to give up hope.

"18th June 1815, Waterloo"

Herodotus, 18 June 2019



(single source)



"The whole art of war consists ofguessingat what is on the other side of thehill," wrote Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington and commander of the coalition that defeated Napoleon I at Waterlooon June 18, 1815.At a time when battles could be encompassed virtually at a glance, the accomplished tactician could not be content with the relative transparency that was available to him from a high point dominating the battlefield. Understanding the opponent's intent and knowing how to counter it, taking into account the frictions inherent in warfare, has always been one of the essential keys to victory. However, more than two centuries later, French historiography remains divided on the causes of the French defeat. Was it the search for concentration of effort that led the Emperor to commit his heavy cavalry to charges as deadly as they were ineffective in the centre, where the opposing force was the most powerful and the most difficult to break? When Blücher's Prussian troops surprised the French forces at the end of the day on 18 June, their freedom of action was thus considerably reduced, because all French means, including the reserve, had already been committed. The failure to respect the principle of economy of means, insufficient security arrangements, orders leaving too much room for Grouchy's initiative, and certainly too hasty planning of a tired and diminished Napoleon, were certainly essential factors in this defeat. If the principles of war regularly see their durability and their universality questioned, it is however clear that some factors of failure are timeless.

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