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MOD Civil Servants to stop working.

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MOD Civil Servants to stop working.

Old 28th Apr 2012, 16:24
  #41 (permalink)  
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What appalled me the most was the fact these staff officers were aircrew - not blunties. And yet the blunties get the dirty end of the stick for screwing around the operational stuff!
Indeed, there were Sky Gods aplenty (in the library with the stiletto). There were also blunties (in the basement with the lead pipe), but where were the Engineers?
"But Holmes, there were no Engineers!"
"Precisely, Watson. Precisely!"
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Old 30th Apr 2012, 05:42
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My particular trade was MPA, we were globally regarded as the best only two years ago. Now apart from a select few scattered around other nations or wiping other fleets arses we have all been Binned.
The majority of the blame for the demise of this capability falls at the feet of CSs( high up the food chain I agree) and a certain Civilian Defense contractor.

There have been a few threads on this but to recap a few verifiable facts;

1. The 1987 policy alluded to by Chugalug (to knowingly waste vast sums of money) was introduced in June 1987 by AMSO, a 3 Star RAF officer.

2. The decision to hide this waste and make up the shortfall by, in part, slashing airworthiness funding and thus actively preventing the maintenance of Safety Cases, was made by his successors, with the support of a single civilian MoD(PE) Director (1 Star).

3. The posts of AMSO and RAF Chief Engineer were then double-hatted and the policy pursued with such rigour that in December 1992 civilian staffs concerned about the adverse effect on aircrew safety were threatened with dismissal by his immediate subordinate, Director General Support Management, an RAF 2 Star (not by coincidence, a mere 3 months after the first coruscating ART report). THAT was the RAFís official response to being told whole fleets were not airworthy.

And so on.........

Throughout this period (87-06, in my personal experience) not one single senior RAF officer paid heed to numerous direct and dire warnings as to the effect of these actions which, time after time, linked waste and lack of airworthiness. The record shows the only formal warnings to 2 Star and above were from Civil Servants, culminating (in the case of Nimrod) in a written warning to Adam Ingram MP, Minister of State for the Armed Forces, in mid-2005. He was advised by these senior staffs there was no airworthiness problem whatsoever and, incredibly, issued this denial some months after XV230 crashed.

Ingram and his senior staffs were made to look utter fools by the Nimrod Review, a fact never reported by the press or, disgracefully, Haddon-Cave himself. Had he done so, the Nimrod Review would have had to take a completely different view of the systemic failings, naming all the above senior staffs. No action has been taken over him being grossly misled and, I suspect, these fools now form part of the new airworthiness structure, as the avoidable loss of aircrew and assets is water off their cowardly backs.

Where you are absolutely right about Civil Service involvement is at 2 Star level in MoD(PE) / DPA. These same detailed warnings were regularly passed to Director General Air Systems 2 (essentially, all Rotary Wing and Maritime) from 1996-on. As I have said many times, it is a simple fact that in 1999-00 (at the very time Nimrod RMPA/2000/MRA4 was getting into real trouble) he made various written rulings that it was acceptable to deliver functionally unsafe aircraft to the Services, knowing them to be so, but to falsely declare they were safe. In this ruling, he (inadvertently or otherwise), reflected the actions of the Assistant Chief of the Air Staffs in November 1993, when he knowingly released an unairworthy Chinook HC Mk2 to Service. His 4 Star, the Chief of Defence Procurement (a civilian, but retired Admiral) upheld these rulings in 2001. In between, the (civilian) 3 Star in DPA simply did not reply to the written warnings he was given. Their actions, to a man, were criminal. The said 2 Star was the person the Public Accounts Committee declined to name when describing the lack of management oversight on Chinook Mk3 as the ďgold standard cock-upĒ; his sole raison díÍtre being to provide such oversight. (At the time, they didnít realise the scale of the Nimrod cock-up, which is presumably Gold+).

Recently, MoD has formally admitted lack of airworthiness was a factor in the scrapping of MRA4. Whose job was it, on a day to day basis, to be satisfied that the inducted aircraft (MR2) was airworthy (a critical dependency for the MRA4 programme)? The IPT leaders for MR2 and MRA4 (in DLO and DPA respectively). Both, as far as I recall, were RAF officers. Astonishingly, one (the more senior) was praised in the Nimrod Review, which (in my opinion) reflected a senior level campaign and collusion to scapegoat a few junior officers (Baber & Eagles) who were victims of the above policies.

Iím afraid the verifiable facts speak for themselves. In this context, the RAF has been let down by its (very) senior officer cadre for 25 years. During that time, many Civil Servants fought to overturn their policies and practices, but were themselves let down by a small number of their own seniors. These names are, in the main, in the public domain, having been permitted to be judge and jury in their own cases.

Finally, I am saddened to see comments about loss of MPA without mentioning the avoidable deaths of colleagues. The two are inextricably linked. MoD and the RAF donít want them to be, but you must always remind them if we are to avoid recurrence.
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Old 1st May 2012, 07:42
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What did you fail on? Was it eyesight or hearing?
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Old 1st May 2012, 13:23
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Eyesight was the bugbear. Except when I did the tests at Biggin when I was having an official "look see" as part of the Recruiting course I was told that "You'll never make a pilot while you've got an 'ole in yer arse, sir".

So I takes me hat off to all those that pole military machines around the world's skies.

But, having left the RAF I did get my pilot's licence and spent a good few happy years test flying light aircraft post-maintenance and fetching and delivering said aircraft from stations (ranches) from around Western Australia going into and out of strips that most people wouldn't contemplate. And flying aircraft over hundreds of nauticals where having a watch on my wrist made up the mandatory instruments. Oh, and doing 2 solo ferry flights out to the Eastern States which were the equivalent of UK - Akrotiri.

I now just like to keep my hand in and up to date.

And I didn't fail the reading and writing test...... Sisemen not man (it's nemesis backwards just in case you're one of the slow of learning and hard of understanding brigade)

Next comment???
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Old 1st May 2012, 13:50
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why did you not go for

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Old 1st May 2012, 13:53
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Originally Posted by langleybaston View Post
why did you not go for

Or Tnucelbirro'
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Old 1st May 2012, 14:15
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.............or kcoc ?
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Old 1st May 2012, 15:02
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To many of us the word Civilian is the new C word
Well the RAF and CSs have each had a crack, is it my turn now?

I am a civilian defence contractor. I thus have a rank equivalence one grade below prisoner (two below khazi digger). I personally am paid quite well (better than most of my peers) to make up for this, although of course my pension is far worse than the services or CS.

I have had a good relationship with both CS and serving officers in the past and I believe a good reputation with them.

My first observation would only be that there are useless ****s in any organisation, whatever clothes they wear.

My second observation would be that a (say) RAF pilot would laugh if I suggested that I could pilot a (say) Typhoon as effectively as him despite not having the years of training or experience. Yet the same officer might often feel that he could/should (for example) write the system requirements for a highly complex system without any training or experience in systems engineering; or run a complex development programme without any project or programme management training or experience.

All organisations have skills, all have idiots, lets stick to what we are each good at, and try and give the idiots to Starbucks or whoever
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Old 1st May 2012, 16:03
  #49 (permalink)  
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I might have gone for


But I didn't want to be thought of as an enigma
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Old 1st May 2012, 16:17
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Most organisations do the Typhoon thing as described above, including the CS. I expect half the Pruners could tell a similar tale to what follows.

At age 43 I could reasonably claim to be

1.as good a weather forecaster as any in my generation [which, to be fair, is not saying a great deal, but I pass lightly over that]
2.a decent lecturer, GIT course, Finningley, Met O College.
3.a decent computer programmer.

I had not a clue regarding:

1. management
2. project design and supervision

The biggest team I had run numbered three people.

SO .........

........... as you pass GO, please continue to No 1. Group HQ Bawtry, run the Main Met Office, be the AOC's MetMan, be line manager of all 1 Group Met, plus all the Training Bases, [125 staff in all], help to write the Distant Learning Met. package, OH! and could you sort out the move, lock stock and barrel to Leeds in a year's time, and you might as well look after all the Civil airfields in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. And did we say the Falklands were about to be invaded?

What saved me? A brilliant team [I tried to get several of them honours and was turned down, but did get a lot promoted], a superb AOC, the 1 Group Mess dirty song book on Friday afternoons, and a great deal of luck. Not to mention a supportive wife, family and dog.

I doubt if there is anything unusual in this, but career progression it is not.

And could I add that, whereas Elgar could have written, and did, my entry in the sisemen stakes, he had nothing to do with the others.

Go on, think about it.
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Old 1st May 2012, 16:44
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Langley, I am well aware that it is not just the RAF that do this. Nor is such a case the fault of the person concerned of course. However some listen to experts, some do not. Some believe that the hours spent up in the clouds makes them more of an expert in development than the people who designed their fiery steed. That is the difference

Why should I complain, I make a good living from picking up the pieces
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Old 11th May 2012, 00:35
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Tuc absolutely bang on, as ever.
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Old 11th May 2012, 07:33
  #53 (permalink)  
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It has often been said that most people in any organisation are promoted to their first level of incompetence.
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Old 11th May 2012, 07:59
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Sweet, I seem to have done pretty well getting to at least two levels above my competence!
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Old 11th May 2012, 11:26
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That is such a good summary I am going to have it printed on a tea towel

.....Chinook Mk3..gold standard cock-up......Nimrod.. Gold+
Are you saving Platinum for the future? How about Sentinel ?
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Old 11th May 2012, 12:46
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The equivalent rank muppets are out there still - I find them as fun and interesting to deal with as the many retired RAF and other military personnel who continue to use their military rank long after they've left the service and gone into new jobs.

I worked with two. One, a Lt Col/C1 aka Bob. The other a Lt Col/C2 aka Colonel ******. The latter had a loud voice too.

As a Sqn Ldr/C2 I never used my rank although I was wearing the uniform, the two colonels were true civilians out of uniform. There was also a real time server a Major/C2 who again was Major.
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Old 11th May 2012, 14:38
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not to mention Captain M Phillips.
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