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FM 34-2-1: TTPs For Reconnaissance And Surveillance And Intelligence Support To Counterreconnaissance



The objective of R&S planning is the collection of information the commander needs in order to fight and win the battle. Planning results in the coordinated efforts of all intelligence resources integrated into one collection effort.


The planning process includes--

  • Determining requirements.
  • Assigning priorities.
  • Allocating the resources to satisfy each requirement.

This appendix will assist commanders and staffs in understanding the process used to develop, implement, and execute an R&S operation.

The process described in this appendix is a deliberate one which can be used when sufficient time is available. In a hasty planning process, the procedures can be modified. Most of the products described here will not be done formally; but the steps involved should still be applied mentally.


The following is the scenario for a maneuver brigade in a high-intensity conflict.

COL Link Gayagas, Commander, 1st Brigade, 52d Infantry Division (Mech), had just received the divisions OPORD. Based on the division commanders concept of operations and intent, COL Gayagas knew his brigade was in for a hard time in accomplishing the mission. The brigade's mission is to conduct a supporting attack in the southern zone of the division's AO.

The brigade is to seize defensible terrain. This will allow the division to prepare for a defense and destroy a reinforcing combined arms Army soon to be committed. To support the division's main attack, the division commander wants the brigade to draw the commitment of the 41st guards motorized rifle division's (GMRD) reserve, the 35th tank regiment (TR), into the brigade's zone. The 35th TR is the only threat to any major drive by the 52d Infantry Division to the north.

While still at the division OPORD briefing, COL Gayagas took advantage of a short break to instruct the brigade S3, MAJ Booth, to call the brigade TOC and give them a warning order for the upcoming mission. MAJ Booth provided the brigade TOC with the type mission, boundaries, and the brigade's objective, as assigned by higher headquarters. This was to allow the staff to begin work on the mission, particularly the S2 who needed the additional time to develop the intelligence products to support the brigade's IPB process.

MAJ Baker, the brigade's S2, immediately began to orchestrate the intelligence system to support the upcoming mission. He directed SGT Hockins, the section intelligence analyst, to develop an MCOO of the AO; and, for initial planning purpose, to include in the MCOO the analysis of the AI extending 5 kilometers to the flanks and 10 kilometers forward of the AO. MAJ Baker also directed his assistant, CPT Roberts, to call the G2 shop or division operations and intelligence (O&I) and get as much information as possible on the enemy situation.

By the time the brigade commander returned from the division OPORD meeting, MAJ Baker had developed a good idea of the enemy situation; and since he understood the informational requirements associated with the type mission assigned, he was ready to support the brigadets decision-making process.


The brigade's planning staff was assembled quickly upon the return of the commander. COL Gayagas provided all the information he had that was not published in the OPORD. He also provided the higher commander's intent and guidance, insights, and concerns, along with some available options.

COL Gayagas was particularly concerned about the brigade's ability to create a situation which would force the enemy motorized rifle division s (MRD) commander to commit his reserve into his brigade sector. He knew he had to find an enemy weakness and exploit it quickly; to do that, he needed detailed information on the enemy disposition. COL Gayagas gave MAJ Baker the PIR:

1. What is the 15th guards motorized rifle regiment (GMRR) defensive disposition?

2. Is there a weakness in the 15th GMRR defensive disposition? If so, where?

3. Where are the artillery battalions comprising the 15th GMRR regimental artillery group?

4. Will the 41st GMRD commander direct any of his gunships against 1st Brigade? If so, when?

5. Where and when will the 35th TR be committed?

6. Will the enemy employ chemical munitions against 1st Brigade? If so, when and where?

COL Gayagas provided his planning guidance, stressing his PIR. He left his second in command, LTC Larcom, to initiate the planning process and coordinate those staff actions requiring operating system integration. LTC Larcom provided each staff element with its corresponding portion of the division OPORD.

He informed the staff they had two hours to go through the mission analysis process in their respective area of responsibility and to be back at the end of those two hours to review the results of their analysis.


With the commanders PIR in hand, MAJ Baker began to develop the products needed to support the accomplishment of the mission. When MAJ Baker arrived at his 577, CPT Roberts and SGT Hockings were refining the initial situational template. They were comparing their product to the OB holdings on the enemy unit facing 1st Brigade. MAJ Baker informed CPT Roberts he had received the division's intelligence products and commander's PIR and needed him to assist in the mission analysis process.

They both understood the higher commanders intent and knew the informational requirements associated with the offensive operation being conducted by the brigade. They completed the mission analysis process as it pertained to the intelligence system. MAJ Baker was about to leave to meet with the orders group to present the result of his analysis. He took with him the MCOO and the enemy situation template. Figure B-1 shows an MRR situation template (based on a prepared defense). He instructed CPT Roberts to start developing the brigade R&S plan.

CPT Roberts began his efforts by analyzing the commander's PIR. Using the enemy situation template, CPT Roberts took the PIR and began to associate them with indicators of enemy COAs. At the same time, he identified those PIR which could be satisfied with organic, assigned, or attached collection assets; and those PIR for which he would have to submit an RII to higher headquarters. The PIR analysis conducted by CPT Roberts reflected:

PIR: What is the 15th GMRR defensive disposition?


- 3 x MRCs with a total of 8 to 10 BMP-2's, and 2 to 3 T-64B'S per MRC, all in prepared fighting position or in assembly area.

- Main obstacle array from 800 meters to 1,000 meters forward of the MRC prepared fighting positions.

- 8 to 12 T-64B's in an assembly area.

- 2 to 3 BMP-2's forward 1 to 3 kilometers of main defensive position with possible protective type obstacle.

- 1 BMP-2 or BMP-1 BRDM forward and isolated from any additional forces.

- 5 to 7 BRDM-2's, mounting 5 AT-5 Spandrel AT guided missiles in assembly area, possible mine layer with 1 BTR included.

PIR: Is there a weakness in the 15th GMRR defensive disposition? If so, where?


- Distance between MRCs greater than 2,000 meters.

- No impeding type obstacle within the main AA.

- Location of tanks within MRC positions.

- No tanks with second echelon forces.

- Location of MRR reserve.

PIR: Where are the artillery battalions comprising the 15th GMRR regimental artillery group? This PIR will also serve as an RII to higher headquarters and will facilitate the integration of ECM support by the IEWSE officer to support the scheme of maneuver.

INDICATOR: 3 x 5 to 8 2S1's or 2S3's on line, located off a major AA or MC.

PIR: Will the 41st GMRD commander direct any of their gunships against 1st brigade? If so, where? This PIR will serve as an RII to higher headquarters.

PIR: Where and when will the 35th TR be committed against 1st brigade? This PIR will also serve as an RII to higher headquarters for initial acquisition and tracking.

INDICATOR: 60 to 70 T-64B's moving southeast from NAI 90 to NAI 16 and NAI 18.

PIR: Will the enemy use chemical munitions against 1st brigade? If so, when? This PIR will serve as an RII to higher headquarters for initial indication of intent to employ.


- Break off activities of enemy forces in contact.

- Enemy troops wearing protective overgarment.


Concurrently with the development of the indicators, CPT Roberts began to identify NAI that, when defined by the indicators, would form the basis and focus of the brigade R&S efforts. CPT Roberts' event analysis process was developed to ascertain the defensive COA as it relates to the reconnaissance and security echelon and the 2d echelon motorized rifle battalion (MRB) and MRR reserve. This is outlined in the brigade SOP. The first echelon MRBs defensive COA was given to the task forces to develop, as assisted by the brigade S2's enemy situation template and event template. Figure B-2 shows an event template. Figure B-3 is a combined situation template and event template.


When MAJ Baker returned from the meeting he had the tentative brigade plan to accomplish the mission. He informed CPT Roberts of the brigade's scheme of maneuver and provided him additional R&S instructions based on the commander's concept of operations. COL Gayagas wanted a good reconnaissance of Axis Speed and Axis Kill (Annex A of the OPORD); and he wanted two OPs established: one overmatching OBJECTIVE CAT and the other OBJECTIVE DOG.

MAJ Baker told CPT Roberts that since he now knew the brigade's scheme of maneuver, he had sufficient information to assign specific informational requirements to subordinates and attached units and complete the brigade R&S plan. CPT Roberts was also to develop the R&S tasking matrix, which is the tool used to disseminate R&S taskings to subordinate and attached units. He is to have the matrix ready within the hour so MAJ Baker could pass it through COL Gayagas for his approval and MAJ Booth for coordination.

The following samples are the results of the brigade's mission analysis and decision-making process to develop the R&S plan. The sample is given along with the figure number assigned to it.

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