Gylian Self-Defense Forces
|Gylian Self-Defense Forces|
|Headquarters||Unified Command Headquarters, Mişeyáke, Mişeyáke|
|Minister of Defense||Caixes Nerlek|
|National Defense Council||Chiefs of Staff of GLSDF, GNSDF, and GASDF|
|Active personnel||155,905 (2019)|
|Reserve personnel||197,539 (2019)|
|Percent of GDP||1,5% (2019)|
The Gylian Self-Defense Forces (French reformed: Forces gyliennes d'autodéfense), abbreviated GSDF (FGA), are the unified national security forces of Gylias. The GSDF consist of sea, air, and land elements, which are legally unified into a single service, but are generally referred to in the plural form.
The GSDF were established in 1958 as the successor to the People's Army, following its victory in the Liberation War. They have preserved much of the anarchist heritage of the PA, giving them unique traits — especially in organisation and discipline — compared to other Tyranian militaries.
The commander-in-chief of the GSDF is the President of Gylias. The GSDF are coordinated by the Unified Command Council, which consists of the Chiefs of Staff of each element. Its foremost mission is the defense of Gylian sovereignty in the event of armed conflict, and protecting Gylians from attempts to impose authority or rule over them.
Reflecting the Darnan Cyras government's broad anarchist orientation and refusal of the trappings or terminology of statehood, the GSDF's purpose was officially defined as "defending the people from the imposition of authority and assisting their organisation of their communities".
A degree of modernisation and reorganisation took place during the National Obligation period. The GSDF expanded naval and air contingents, which remedied wartime deficiencies and reflected their new role in defending Gylians. The government sought to strengthen national security and improve its international standing by entering into a mutual defense agreement with Ossoria — which had established a naval base at Eltykan during the war — and joining the Common Sphere.
The adoption of the Constitution of Gylias in 1961 reflected strong pacifist sentiments resulting from the trauma of the Liberation War. Thus, Article 12 renounces war as an instrument of settling international disputes and the ability to maintain a military, with the GSDF being legally restricted to protection of sovereignty. The President of Gylias was named the commander-in-chief of the GSDF, as a safeguard against the erosion of their democratic character through politicisation. The country was divided into five large defense zones (zones défensives) to improve defense policy and coordination.
Together with the Gylian Police, the GSDF took on additional civil duties during the Golden Revolution, particularly in provision of social services. GSDF personnel were involved in mass vaccination and education campaigns, distribution of food and other vital supplies, and public works.
Membership of the Common Sphere allowed the GSDF to develop cooperative relations with other member states' militaries, engaging in joint exercises.
The commander-in-chief of the GSDF is the President, but in practice the Cabinet of Gylias is responsible for defense-related decisions, exercised by the Minister of Defense. In this task, they are assisted by the National Defense Council, which consists of the Chiefs of Staff of the GSDF's Land, Naval, and Air components.
The President appoints the Chiefs of Staff on the advice of the mass assemblies and elected commanders.
As the legal successor of the PA, the GSDF retain the character of a democratic militia. Policy is discussed and agreed upon at mass assemblies, with commanders being elected and recallable. The President's appointment of the Chiefs of Staff is purely ceremonial, similar to their role in convening Parliament and regional and municipal legislatures.
The GSDF are based on self-discipline. Rules are approved by mass assemblies, and command is based on imparting an understanding of why an order must be obeyed.
The GSDF avoids or heavily downplays the trappings of a conventional army. The standard salute is the raised fist, performed with the left hand. Internal organisation is non-hierarchical, based on election and recall, and there are no distinctions in pay or quartering. Titles are used solely for organisational purposes.
Uniforms are voluntary, and utilitarian in character, with camouflage patterns, although some SDF personnel may choose to wear different uniforms in order to visually denote position within the organisation. Parades are never carried out.
The GSDF are a unified force, but in practice three branches are recognised:
- The Gylian Land Self-Defense Force (GLSDF), which consists of approximately 90.000 personnel.
- The Gylian Naval Self-Defense Force (GNSDF), which consists of approximately 31.000 personnel and a fleet of 50 ships. Its equipment is more maritime law enforcement-oriented than military.
- The Gylian Air Self-Defense Force (GASDF), which consists of approximately 28.000 personnel and 555 aircraft.
The GSDF have a unified rank structure, with the following ranks from lowest to highest:
- Petty Officer
- Warrant Officer
- Officer Cadet
- Second Lieutenant
- Lieutenant Colonel
- Major General
- Lieutenant General
- Chief of Staff
The GSDF are never referred to in the media or official contexts using the terms "military", "army", "navy", or "air force". Similarly, GSDF personnel are never called "soldiers", but always "Self-Defense Forces members", commonly abbreviated SDFistes.
The GSDF are a completely voluntary service. Personnel standards and training procedures are largely similar to the Gylian Police. Legal grounds for refusing someone entrance into the GSDF include a criminal record, medical or psychological unfitness for service, and authoritarian personality tendencies.
GSDF members are the predominant group among those who possess firearm licenses.
The primary purpose of the GSDF is to defend Gylias and its communities in the event of military conflict. The security strategy is based on the concept of total defense, in which all sectors of the government and economy are involved in planning for a crisis.
In the event of an invasion, defense doctrine focuses on resisting attacks and using the size and geography of the country to fight back, with an emphasis on guerrilla warfare tactics.
As a self-defense force, the GSDF do not possess equipment with a mainly offensive purpose, such as aircraft carriers, long-range surface-to-surface missiles, ballistic missiles, strategic bombers, marines and amphibious units. They also do not possess nuclear weapons.
The GSDF is notable for its continued use of bicycle infantry.