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Ricks Napkin Challenge- The Infantry Section and Platoon

KevinB

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The sound of the blast was considered the loudest man-made noise in history. Reports suggested that the sound was heard in London and Dublin...
The combined explosion is considered to have killed more people than any other non-nuclear man-made explosion in history.

Now we just need that Chunnel digger to Ukraine and the Russian border ;)
 

FJAG

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Wheeled vehicles don’t do well in rubble / tracked are significantly more versatile in that respect.
I prefer them for MSR patrols, convoys and movements, I’d use them for protective movement in support of operations - or for quick exploitation past enemy positions.
This brings us back to the fundamental difference between the basic Stryker (a battlefield taxi to deliver dismounted infantry rapidly and safely) and the LAV (with a turreted weapon system) which tempts the infantry to make use of its superior weapon capability as a trade off for the lost dismounts. I've read the manuals that spell out the doctrine for its use. I find it interesting that the whole issue remains so controversial.

Mortars are absolutely useless in urban areas of any significant size. After 5-6 stories you will lose any real ability to target things. Winds among building are notoriously awkward and will play havoc with those even if they do have the correct arc to hit.

*based on the assumption as the good guys we aren’t trying to level as city.
The plunging fire of mortars is easier to achieve than that from field artillery which generally has a shallow angle of terminal descent and is very susceptible to crest clearance in the target area. It's not insurmountable. Our guns are capable high angle fire but that creates issues as well. This is an area of use that could be better addressed by loitering munitions.

Honestly, if I was in the infantry I'd be pushing hard for a two-tube mortar section with each company as well as a four-tube group with battalion each capable of firing both conventional rounds and loitering munitions controlled by forward MFCs. This is by far the easiest way to get guided munitions into the hands of the forward platoons without the necessity of lugging them around with them.

Added to that should be an artillery battery of heavier loitering munitions in general support to the brigade.

🍻
 

daftandbarmy

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This brings us back to the fundamental difference between the basic Stryker (a battlefield taxi to deliver dismounted infantry rapidly and safely) and the LAV (with a turreted weapon system) which tempts the infantry to make use of its superior weapon capability as a trade off for the lost dismounts. I've read the manuals that spell out the doctrine for its use. I find it interesting that the whole issue remains so controversial.


The plunging fire of mortars is easier to achieve than that from field artillery which generally has a shallow angle of terminal descent and is very susceptible to crest clearance in the target area. It's not insurmountable. Our guns are capable high angle fire but that creates issues as well. This is an area of use that could be better addressed by loitering munitions.

Honestly, if I was in the infantry I'd be pushing hard for a two-tube mortar section with each company as well as a four-tube group with battalion each capable of firing both conventional rounds and loitering munitions controlled by forward MFCs. This is by far the easiest way to get guided munitions into the hands of the forward platoons without the necessity of lugging them around with them.

Added to that should be an artillery battery of heavier loitering munitions in general support to the brigade.

🍻

Interesting article... 'playing the wrong game' is what the Russians certainly seem to be doing:

THE EIGHT RULES OF URBAN WARFARE AND WHY WE MUST WORK TO CHANGE THEM​


From October 16, 2016 to January 4, 2017, US-backed Iraqi security forces conducted a full-scale city attack to liberate Mosul from the Islamic State. The operation was the largest conventional land battle since the attack on Baghdad during the US-led invasion in 2003 and one of the most destructive urban fights in modern history involving Western forces. The battle saw a force of over one hundred thousand attacking somewhere between five and twelve thousand enemy fighters defending the city. The nine-month battle is reported to have killed over ten thousand civilians, caused an estimated two billion dollars in damage to the city, created ten million tons of debris, and displaced over 1.8 million of the city’s residents.

We Are Playing the Wrong Game

One of the reasons none of these rules of city attacks have been really explored is because modern, Western militaries, especially the US Army, is playing the wrong game. The US military is designed for maneuver warfare and the city attack is classic positional warfare, more like siege warfare fighting than something the principles of maneuver warfare call for. In fact, if the eight rules of city attacks are compared to cases of siege warfare in medieval Europe, one would see that many of the challenges are largely the same: attacking fortifications with no cover or concealment or hindered by massive defenses. But the difference is that militaries in the past adapted, developing ways to address these challenges such as using mobile cover while closing the distance to fortifications, digging tunnels under walls, employing artillery to create opening in walls, and many other innovations.

Since modern militaries do not sufficiently understand the city attack as terrain-based positional warfare, they apply the principles, tools, and methods of enemy-based maneuver warfare that rely on maneuver and firepower. Ultimately, this fundamental misunderstanding leads to the destruction of entire cities, building by building.

If militaries fail to address these rules, the city attack will remain one of the missions with the most tactical, accidental, and political risk. It will continue to drive combat into urban areas where weaker combatants can use the advantages they gain for short-term political wins.

If, however, the rules of urban warfare could be changed, if militaries overcame the disadvantages of attacking an urban defense and took advantages away from the defenders, warfare would move out of the cities as adversaries learned it was a quick way to be rapidly defeated.

 

OldSolduer

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It makes sense. Ghengis Khan didn’t attack cities with his mounted archers. The Mongols learned siege warfare.

The rest is history
 

Kirkhill

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I prefer tunnels ;)

Just get some of those Chunnel diggers for the Engineers.

While I am kidding (somewhat) about the Chunnel diggers, tunneling and subterranean passages is the safest method of movement on the battlefield - as it deprives the enemy of any SA on your movements.




Attackers in modern urban operations mostly view the underground as an obstacle to address if encountered. US Army doctrine and training overemphasizes subterranean operations like the ability to clear tunnels. There is no mention of how the presence of tunnels could be used to the attacker’s advantage—to cover movement, for instance, or to ensure surprise.

If militaries invested in and developed rapid tunnel-making capabilities, they could avoid much of the urban defender’s obstacle belts and plans. By either digging tunnels from the outside of the city or using existing urban infrastructure, an attacking force might be enabled to bypass all primary defensives and start its attack from the center of the city moving outward. It would be a modern-day Trojan horse. It would also be similar to the German response to the French Maginot Line. In May 1940, when German forces came to the long line of defensive fortifications along the two countries’ border—which the French believed was impenetrable—they simply went around the entire line. They changed the rules and the advantages of positional defensive lines of previous eras.

To be sure, digging a tunnel big enough to pass enough troops through would take time and resources. But the 2017 assault on Mosul took nine months once it started, and that does not account for planning activities ahead of the battle. The Islamic State had been allowed two years to build multiple complex defensive belts around the city. In 2014 and 2015 rebel fighters in Syria dug tunnels over three thousand feet long in just fifty days with hand tools alone. With modern technologies, digging a tunnel long enough and big enough is not unfeasible if a military would commit to the idea. While some US defense organizations are exploring rapid tunneling, it is not yet for these types of purposes.





Towards the end of 1914, the civil engineering company of Member of Parliament and British Army Major, John Norton-Griffiths, was working on sewerage renewal contracts in Liverpool and Manchester. The relatively small-bore tunnels were being driven by a manual technique known as clay-kicking. Only useful in firm clay soils, the man doing the digging sat with his back supported by a wooden frame, with his feet pointing towards the cutting face. With a spade-like tool he dug out the clay, passing the spoil over-head to one of his mates for disposal at the rear.[5] In early December 1914, Norton-Griffiths wrote to the War Office suggesting that the technique would be useful attack, spying or for intercepting German tunnels coming in the opposite direction. He concluded by asking to be allowed to take a group of his "moles" to France where if the soil was right, they could quickly undermine enemy positions. His letter was filed.[5]

On 20 December 1914, by digging shallow tunnels under no man's land, German sappers placed eight 50 kg (110 lb) mines beneath the positions of the Indian Sirhind Brigade in Givenchy-lès-la-Bassée. Following their simultaneous detonation, an infantry attack resulted in the loss of the entire company of 800 men.[1][4]

Following further attacks, it was evident by January 1915 that the Germans were mining to a planned system. As the British had failed to develop suitable counter-tactics or listening devices, Field Marshal John French, commander of the British Expeditionary Force, wrote to the Secretary of State for War, Herbert Kitchener, describing the seriousness of the German mining situation.[5] Norton-Griffiths received a telegram on 12 February 1915, instructing him to report to the War Office. On his arrival, he was shown into Kitchener's private offices, There, Kitchener showed him French's letter. Kitchener then asked Norton-Griffiths for his advice. Using a coal shovel from the room's fire grate, Norton-Griffiths sat on the floor and gave a demonstration of "clay-kicking."[5]

A job for KBR or the Corps or Engineers?
 

Kirkhill

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This brings us back to the fundamental difference between the basic Stryker (a battlefield taxi to deliver dismounted infantry rapidly and safely) and the LAV (with a turreted weapon system) which tempts the infantry to make use of its superior weapon capability as a trade off for the lost dismounts. I've read the manuals that spell out the doctrine for its use. I find it interesting that the whole issue remains so controversial.

And that brings me back to the Parade Square at Mewata in 1980. And discussions of why we needed Marders.

1. Europe was an Armoured battlefield

2. What was the role of the Infantry on the Armoured battlefield?
A. Follow the tanks - for that we needed Marders.

3. Who would control the Marders?
A. Never resolved.

The RCAC could have done the entire 4 CMBG job itself - It already had Assault Troops in it establishment. It just needed to enhance that establishment.

But that would have left the Infantry as a National Defence Force, a Mobile Striking Force with everyone else carrying ropes and ladders. The only overseas opportunities would have been the CAST Brigade. But there were no medals or promotions to be had there. The main event was in Germany working with the Americans. And for that we need Marders.

But the problem of the Marder, the IFV, was neatly encapsulated by the American Bradley - the Bradley came in two versions - the M2 Infantry Fighting Vehicle and the M3 Cavalry Fighting Vehicle. Ultimately the only substantive difference between the two was that the CFV left some infanteers behind added more TOW missiles.

One vehicle, that performed two roles. That should have been a good thing. But, both there and here, it all got wrapped up in politics, budgets and promotions.
 

GR66

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Not sure if this is worthy of it's own thread but I'll put it here as it could be a handy device to issue out to infantry at the Section/Platoon level.

Eurosatory 2022: Carboteh Launches Revolutionary VSHORAD Solution​

‘Call My Bluff’ Forces Aircraft to Honour Fake Threats
Carboteh
, a spin-off of Guardiaris, will present what it terms “a real war-changer” at Eurosatory – the Battlefield Anti-Aircraft Non-Lethal VSHORAD (BANS) system.
BANS introduces effective anti-aircraft defence without a single shot being fired. The light shoulder-operated weapon simulates a missile launch pattern that digitally stimulates an aircraft’s missile launch warning and detection system, triggering its alarm. The combat aircraft or helicopter is forced to immediately dispense countermeasures with flares, extensive use of which leaves it vulnerable to anti-aircraft missiles. Pilots must then either abort their mission or remain at risk from VSHORAD missiles.
The system redefines the modern approach to air defence with a new philosophy and design. Battery-powered, it delivers up to 500 simulated missile launch activations. It is easy to use, with no specific training needed and very cost-effective. BANS devices can thus be widely distributed throughout the battlefield with a swarm attack logic, thus significantly shifting the course of future airstrike missions.
BANS has multiple applications, the most effective being when used in tandem with MANPADS, SHORAD or mounted on an RCWS or drone. This results in significant increases in target hit probability. BANS offers a vision – the revolution of VSHORAD tactical warfare.

Here's a link to the company website.
 

Kirkhill

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Eurosatory news


PARIS — The .52 caliber self-propelled howitzer careened around a corner on a dirt field next to Paris’ largest exhibition center and skid to a stop, throwing a plume of dust in the air.

Three French soldiers jumped out of the cab as the cannon rose into position. Overhead, a small remotely operated quadcopter kept watch. After the cannon fired a simulated round at an unspecified and unseen target, the soldiers lowered the barrel and drove off.

“That all took only two minutes,” proclaimed Gen, Damien Tundeau de Demaisac, the French army’s future capabilities division chief of staff.

The half-hour demonstration of the French army’s capabilities on June 12 set the tone for the upcoming five-day Eurosatory conference,

...

The half-hour demonstration held for the media showed many of the tactics and technologies being used in Ukraine. One is the use of small unmanned aerial vehicles, especially quadcopters. Tundeau de Demaisac said the French army alone is looking to procure 3,000 of them by 2025.

...

Ukrainian forces are putting small drones to use for indirect fires targeting along with seeking out Russian forces. A list of companies at this week’s conference shows dozens of them selling drones, loitering munitions and the counter-UAS systems.
 
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