Saturday, March 26, 2011

Strategy for Ex Servicemen to obtain Speedy Justice

A tactical decision is one based on sound analysis of the situation. The Army has several military appreciation processes (MAP) that cover all levels of staff. These are used to analyze a problem and come up with solid courses of action (COA's) and contingencies. Each filters down to the commander on the ground who has a pre H-hr and post H-hr MAP. Lt Gen Yogi Sharma (Retd) a brilliant tactician has formulated a novel template for ESM strategy. All ESM Advocacy Groups need to study the strategy and evolve its own, appropriate and coordinated responses, to obtain speedy Justice for Veterans.

Strategy Review: IESM– AN APPROACH
1. Note-form, ‘texting’ mode. Reason:
  • Economy of effort (‘twitter’ age)
  • Tests comprehension/ de-cryption skills?
  • Promotes creative dissonance/ refinement.
    2. Aim. To evolve a ‘conceptual construct’ for ‘smart- strat’ option.
    Review of Sit
    3. Present Goal /Strategy
  • ‘Laser–beam’ Strat to gain a ‘Uni-focal Obj’: OROP.
  • Frontal and ‘Confrontal’; (Disciplined- but seen as ‘soft’ by some?)
  • Surcharged and strident-(emotion over reason?); AFT/ Courts less exploited
  • Not fully ‘calibrated/nuanced’ to cope with dynamics of ‘wily’ power- players’e.g. bureaucracy/ committed media/ politicians.
    4. Results
  • Substantial ‘gains’ but OROP still ‘Over-The-Horizon’?
  • ‘Diminishing returns’ scenario; ‘fatigue factor’- maj threat.
    5. IESM-Prospects
  • ‘Non- critical’ mass; Veteran Orgs- fragmented; Synergy elusive.
  • Limited staying power/ resource base; ‘Lone Ranger’ syndrome.
  • In ‘attrition- scenario’- Govt can stonewall/ divide/ tire-out.
    6. Need to adapt/innovate- SMART STRAT.
    Strat Re-orientation- A Perspective Change
    7. Re-focus Goal and Objs. Expand ‘bandwidth’, as follows:
    (a) Focus on Inclusive Goal of JUSTICE for VETERANS (covers OROP). Benefits:
  • Injustices are ‘endemic’ and easily identifiable e.g. rank pay fiasco, disability distortions, Majs’ pay scale etc;
  • Essential steps enroute to full ‘justice’ and destination- OROP;
  • Multi-lateral grid of incremental/ intermediate Objs (as in a CPM/PERT chart).
  • Can be integrated into a network of ‘battle plans’ of a ‘campaign’.
  • Provides leverage (pressure pts) to expose/soften ‘scheming’ bureaucracy and Mil-system’s blind-spots.
  • Offers a ‘moral high-ground’ to IESM (as distinct from ‘politics’ of others). May enable common-cause synergy with like-minded gps.
    (b) Intermediate Objs (IOs). To be derived from ‘Stakeholder Analysis’. These incl mil and non-mil domains like AFT/courts, media, civ society/NGOs, MOD etc. Each has distinct characteristics, power/ pay-off profiles- to be ‘exploited’, suitably.
    (c) Plans. Will flow from the above. Need to be integrated into a ‘dynamic model’.
    8. Emp suitable ‘soft skills’ e.g. lobby, negotiate, networks (blogging incl); more ‘Reason over Emotion’: CHANAKYA-neeti.
    9. Institutionalise Structure and Systems, for the long haul.
    Stake-holder Analysis.
    10. Incls three main gps- Mil, Non-Mil & Veterans- as intersecting Power players/ Stakeholders:

    11. Influence Potential. Each of the above has unique Power/ Pay-off and Resistance potential vis a vis IESM objs. Their Influence Potential (IP) is derived from various intrinsic and environmental factors e.g. statutory powers of AFT/ courts, hostile bureaucracy, vibrant NGOs/ silent majority etc. To assess, prioritise and leverage this ‘dynamic value’ is a ‘judgment call’ for IESM Ldrs.
    12.Illustration. An illustrative rank- ordering of IPs, showing sample reasons only, is given below:

    13. Implications. Strat implications of the above analysis are:
    (a) Facilitates ‘Application of Effort’ and ‘Resource Allocation’ choices. In the above example, max effort/attn should obviously go to top end of IP Spectrum i.e. fire max cases of identifiable injustices in AFT/Courts. Also, suitably ‘neutralise’ (expose/pressure/coerce) lower end/hostile elements.
    (b) Sample analysis, as in Coln 3 & 5 indicates the ‘direction’ of thrust/objs (IOs). For example to expose/ coerce bureaucracy in MOD/ Service HQ, load them with RTI applications to fix accountability for bad/unjust past decisions/policies (like Rank pay); Co-opt NGOs and Media. Specific objs and plans would be the logical sequel of this process.
    (c) A litany of policy/ implementation ‘injustices’’ is available, on net/ record, to pursue this process. Systematically ‘data bank’ it, analyse and file RTI cases. For example, ‘who is accountable for denial of rank pay? Who/ why Service HQ delinked from pensioners problems (part of overall compensation package)/ Disability delays/ distortions- hold acct-able/ punish?
    14. The ‘broad-front/ multi-thrust/ problem-solving’ concept- model, outlined above, aims to use the existing strs and tools, more coherently. The brand/ emotional value of OROP is not surrendered but made more inclusive.
    15. Validation. It would be ‘vain’ of me to assume that the suggested conceptual ‘tweaking’ can lead to a SMART STRAT? This needs validation, and refinement, through brainstorming. The process/ SD ‘nuts and bolts’ can, thereafter, be pursued by more fertile minds. Till then, dig deep to find sense.
    16. Strategizing is an ‘art’. Its ‘craft’ lies in working well the right ‘model’.
    Lt Gen YN Sharma, Former Army Commander
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