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mission

The RTA is an organic unit of the Royal Thai Supreme Command Headquarters. Commanded by the Commander-in-Chief, the RTA is obliged to two primary missions: preparing land forces and employing the prepared forces to defend the nation.

Land Forces Preparation
The RTA has continuously prepared its forces to stand ready to confront both internal and external threats. Force preparation is focused on four main aspects: force structure, combat readiness, combat sustainability and modernization.


Force Structure

The Ministry of Defense has established a guideline to improve its structure and management system in synchronization with the government policy on “Good Governance”. This guideline calls for a more integrated and compact force structure.The RTA, however, still strongly recommends its present structure under which its units are organized according to functions into 7 components, namely, Command Component, Combat Component, Combat Support Component, Logistics Component, Regional Component, Education and Training Component and National Development Support Component. It has been proven that this proposed structure is effective in terms of peacetime management and is most flexible in terms of tasks and missions the RTA is to perform during crisis and wartime. However, there is an additional constraint such that, under normal circumstances, the RTA is not allowed to either expand the existing units or establish the new ones.


Combat Readiness

The RTA has developed various courses of action to enhance its combat readiness. But due to budget constraint, we unavoidably have to assign top priority to “target” units which account for approximately one-third of all combat forces. And when it comes to combat readiness, certain aspects will be closely examined; these are personnel management, equipment, and training and education system.The RTA regards its personnel as the most important factor of combat readiness. Due to this fact, personnel management process is developed with efficiency in mind. Some of the relevant issues are personnel selection, rotation of military assignment, personnel knowledge and capability development, and personnel welfare and quality of life development. An effective reserve system is also emphasized. The so-called “Civilian Employee” and the “Ministry of Defense Civilian” systems will also be implemented shortly.

The RTA has utilized information technology on its inventory system. Weapons inventory and electronic auction acquisition systems through Internet (e-auction) in accordance with the government policy have also been implemented. Research and development has been given high priorities to achieve the self-reliance goal. And to ensure its combat readiness on equipment, the RTA has proposed its weaponry and equipment requirements as a part of the 2006-2014 Ministry of Defense’s weapon acquisition and repair package project.As for training, commanders at all levels must pay close attention to training programs of their respective units. Throughout the year, conscripts undertake a rigorous training program to develop their military skills individuallyand collectively. Unit schools are encouraged. Selected units will be provided opportunities to enjoy joint/ combined exercises with other services and allies including the United States, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Bangladesh. On education, priority is given to courses that contribute to personnel’s career path. This is achieved by modernizing education curriculum such that it conforms to the learning organization concept. Moreover, ethics, discipline, leadership, and sense of duty have been included in all curriculums.The third aspect of force preparation is combat sustainability. Logistics capability is to be enhanced by pre-collecting repair parts and reserved war supplies. Logistics cooperation with allied countries is to be established. An appropriate logistics support system with suitable logistics sites are all planned for. Reservists through an effective reserve system must be made available in order to ensure the mobilization of forces on demand.

Combat Sustainability
The third aspect of force preparation is combat sustainability. Logistics capability is to be enhanced by pre-collecting repair parts and reserved war supplies. Logistics cooperation with allied countries is to be established. An appropriate logistics support system with suitable logistics sites are all planned for. Reservists through an effective reserve system must be made available in order to ensure the mobilization of forces on demand.

Employment of Land Forces
The question now is how the RTA employs the land forces that it has prepared. The simple answer is that the RTA is now playing four crucial roles. Its primary role is of course to defend the country and protect national interests. Its second role is to conduct internal security operations. The RTA is also expected to help maintain internal law and order and to support national development for its third and fourth role. In addition to these four roles, military operations other than war have recently becoming a more prominent part of the RTA operations.

National Defense
During peacetime, the RTA implements the concept of border security establishment to instill the trust and confidence building process with neighboring countries. This is achieved in part through the Regional Border Committees and bodies consisting of members from both neighboring countries. Additionally, border surveillance and border area organization are two critical missions performed to assure border stability during peacetime.Seven task forces, with over 20,000 personnel, are regularly deployed along the border. These forces not only safeguard the borders but also perform military operations other than war such as narcotics suppression, control of illegal immigrants and confiscation of illegal items. Each year, these task forces are able to detect a great number of illegal immigrants and confiscate a large quantity of illegal drugs and items.