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Armed Forces (Co-Ordination)

Volume 360: debated on Thursday 9 May 1940

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asked the Prime Minister whether there is any staff course for senior officers of all three Services to provide an opportunity for the study of operations, involving the co-ordination of all three arms under a single command, with a view to making officers who have passed such a course eligible for appointment to such a command?

Up to the outbreak of war, the study of operations involving the co-ordination of all three arms (whether under joint command, unified command or command by the Service playing the predominant part) had been for many years the subject of particular study not only at the Imperial Defence College, but also at the staff colleges of the three Services. The courses at these colleges were closed on the outbreak of war, but it is clear that there are a number of senior officers who are qualified by their training for the command of combined operations.

In addition, an establishment known as the Inter-Service Training and Development Centre was set up by His Majesty's Government in September, 1938, with the following terms of reference:
"To study and develop the material, technique and tactics necessary for all types of combined operations."
This Centre is still in being, and functioning at full pressure.