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Summary: Transformation is the Key to the Relevance of Armed Forces

Hans Jesper Helsø

The dynamic force of the international system and the continually changing demands on modern armed forces require a transformation process guaranteeing that armed forces remain relevant, adaptable, and reliable as a political tool.

This also applies to the Danish Armed Forces tasked to meet direct and indirect threats to the security of Denmark, to maintain Danish sovereignty, to protect Danish citizens, and to contribute to international peace and security, in line with the principles of the UN Charta. As has been the case in the past, the UN, NATO and EU will put up the general conditions in future as well, by which Copenhagen’s exterior and security policy are oriented.

In Denmark there has been a tradition of long-term defence agreements lasting four to five years, which continue existence even in the course of changing balance of power, because of their wide support in parliament. The latest of these, designed to last from 2005 until 2009, was passed in June 2004, and this period is also characterized by the transformation of the Danish Armed Forces beginning now.

By the end of this process, the Danish Armed Forces are supposed to have capacities for taking part in international operations, covering the entire spectrum of NATO missions as well as for comprehensive defence, including the capability to react appropriately to terrorist attacks.

Within the range of this defence agreement for the years 2005 - 2009 Denmark will double its efforts concerning permanently deployable Danish forces in an international environment.

2000 soldiers are supposed to be able to take part in international operations, and even more when shorter time spans are intended.

By deploying more professional soldiers, who are paid out of a different budget branch, the 900 Mio DKK earmarked for international operations will be sufficient. In addition to that, Denmark makes great efforts to coordinate the civil and military troubles concerning crisis reaction; concentrated mission planning is supposed to ensure that resources deployed by Denmark are used as well as possible.

By rationalization the staff and support structures the reorganized Danish Armed Forces are supposed to arrive at a ratio of 60 to 40% in favour of operative structures.

By merging headquarters, centralizing personnel, redefining compulsory military service, and mission-specific training and procurement, the transformation of the Danish Armed Forces is meant to result in a powerful military force, matching the future tasks, primarily orienting itself by its international tasks.

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Eigentümer und Herausgeber: Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung | Roßauer Lände 1, 1090 Wien
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