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FM 34-8: Combat Commander's Handbook On Intelligence



The IEW support mission at all echelons is to provide intelligence, EW, and CI support to help you accomplish your mission.

Elements of Intelligence Support

Signals Intelligence (SIGINT)

SIGINT is analyzed information derived from monitoring and locating enemy communications and noncommunications systems (such as enemy radars). Intelligence derived from monitoring enemy communications is communications intelligence (COMINT), and intelligence derived from monitoring noncommunications emitters is electronic intelligence (ELINT).

Electronic Warfare (EW)

EW is one of your combat multipliers. It can disrupt enemy command and control and fire support communications when used during a critical phase of the battle. Some aspects of it will protect your communications. The three elements of EW are-

    a. Electronic Warfare Support Measures (ESM) gives you immediate threat recognition, combat information, and target acquisition as well as the specific frequencies and radio nets you want to jam.
    b. Electronic countermeasures (ECM) consist of jamming enemy communications and electronic deception. Used properly, these two elements can complement lethal fires.
    c. Electronic counter-countermeasures (ECCM). These are the responsibility of your signal officer and consists of measures to protect your command, control, and communications (C3).

Human Intelligence (HUMINT)


Interrogation of enemy prisoners of war or civilian detainees provides information on enemy intentions, composition, and disposition. Debriefing of refugees can also provide valuable information on the enemy, plus information on the status of lines of communication and other aspects of the AO.

Long-range Surveillance (LRS)

LRS units provide reliable HUMINT against second echelon and follow-on forces and deep targets. LRS units conduct stationary surveillance and very limited reconnaissance. They deploy deep into the enemy area to observe and report enemy dispositions, movement and activities, and battlefield conditions. They arc not equipped or trained to conduct direct-action missions.

Counterintelligence (CI)

CI protects the force through evaluation of the enemy's multidiscipline intelligence gathering capabilities. It detects, evaluates, counteracts, and prevents hostile intelligence collection, subversion, and sabotage. CI also provides important support to the commander's OPSEC and deception programs.

Scouts and Cavalry

Although not part of MI organizations, your scouts and cavalry units can also provide you with critical and exact intelligence information by visual means.

Imagery Intelligence (IMINT)

IMINT is used to acquire and exploit visual representations on the battlefield that contribute to situation development, targeting, and BDA. IMINT sensors include electro-optical, infrared, FLIR, and RADAR imaging systems.

Intelligence System of Systems

No single echelon has sufficient organic intelligence capabilities to satisfy all your priority intelligence and targeting requirements. Your intelligence officer must know and understand how to obtain support from higher and lower elements of the intelligence system of systems in order to make it work to satisfy your intelligence requirements. To most efficiently use your organic resources, you must understand-

  • Command relationships.

  • IEW standard tactical missions.

  • Unit organizational capabilities, limitations, and employment considerations, Detailed collection system capabilities and numbers are outlined in Appendix B.

Command and Support Relationships

A division's IEW systems arc organic, assigned, or operational control (OPCON) to the MI battalion. In some situations, IEW assets or units maybe attached to maneuver units. Circumstances which may require the attachment of an entire MI company team to a brigade are-

  • Maneuver brigade deployment on an independent mission.

  • Offensive operations when the maneuver brigade has a deep objective and the MI unit must deploy out of communications range from the MI battalion TOC for an extended period of time.

Regardless of how many MI assets are operating in your AO, the MI battalion will attach an IEWSO to your brigade. The IEWSO serves as your liaison with the MI unit. He coordinates your taskings with the MI company commander and the MI battalion, and helps coordinate terrain management for the MI collection assets.

When an MI company team is in direct support of your brigade and focused on your PIR, the IEWSO coordinates your COMINT taskings with the MI battalion TOC so its Technical Control and Analysis Element (TCAE) can provide your collectors the technical data (enemy call signs, frequencies, etc.) needed 10 execute your taskings.


MI Company (Separate Brigade) or Armored Cavalry Regiment (ACR)

This MI company has fewer capabilities (ban the MI battalion but more capabilities (ban a task organized MI company team. The MI company in support of the ACR or separate brigade provides-

  • Communications intercept, direction finding (DF), and ECM.
  • CI.

  • Interrogation.

  • Ground surveillance.

  • Personnel to staff the S2/S3, These soldiers conduct-
    -Collection Management. 
    -All-source analysis and reporting. 
    -Technical control and tasking.
    -Multidiscipline force protection and OPSEC support.
MI Battalion (Division)

Organizational Capabilities

The MI battalion at division level provides you with ground based communications intercept, DF capability, ECM, HUMINT collection, and ground based surveillance.

  • The QUICKFIX platoon, habitually OPCON to the MI battalion, provides aerial communications intercept/DF/ECM. It operates in GS to the division and allows for greater collection range and depth.

  • LRS teams are deployed 15 to 80 kilometers (km) forward of the division forward line of own troops (FLOT) to observe selected NAIs. Their insertions are time phased to ensure continuous coverage of selected deep divisional NAIs.

  • Ground surveillance systems arc frequently attached to the maneuver units, to locate moving targets.

The remaining divisional assets will be task organized into MI company learns GS to the division as a whole or DS to designated brigades. MI company teams may have ground based COMINT collection and EW, CI, and interrogation capability.

MI Company Team (GS)

MI company teams in GS to the division -

  • Deploy throughout the battlefield.

  • Are tasked by the MI battalion commander and S3 as directed by the G2 CM&D.

  • Respond to centralized control by the MI battalion, which-

  • -Increases system tasking flexibility(available systems).
    -Allows for coordinated DF operations.
    -Contributes, to more coordinated and surviable ESM and ECM
MI Company Team (DS)
  • MI company teams in DS of brigades respond first to the brigade's PIRs.

  • The brigade synchronizes their collection and displacement taskings.

  • Narrow maneuver space in a single brigade area may limit the length of the collection baseline which degrades DF accuracy.

MI Brigade (Corps)

The MI brigade provides you with ground-based and airborne SIGINT and EW, close and deep HUMINT collection, and links to national and theater intelligence systems. The Ml brigade can provide IEW assets to subordinate commands to weight the main effort. The corps MI brigade has three battalions: operations, tactical exploitation, and aerial exploitation.

Operations Battalion

The Operations Battalion provides the CTOCSE which performs IEW analytical, processing, and management functions in support of overall corps operations. The Operations Battalion -

  • Provides manning to the G2 to conduct CM, all-source analysis and reporting, dissemination, CI analysis, and target development. It also provides manning to the G3 to conduct deception and OPSEC planning.

  • Produces all-source intelligence to support operations.

  • Provides processing systems which interface with and receive national and theater IMINT and COMINT.

  • Provides SIGINT analysis and technical SIGINT taskings to brigade collection assets.

  • Provides special intelligence (S1) communications support to subordinate units.

Tactical Exploitation Battalion (TEB)

The TEB provides CI, interrogation of prisoners, ground-based SIGINT and EW support, and LRS support to corps operations. It provides-

  • GS to the corps in response to corps taskings.

  • Systems and teams so that you can provide them to divisions or the ACR to weight your main effort.

  • The Cl and interrogation assets for multidiscipline force protection, OPSEC, interrogation, and document exploitation, and can be deployed thourghout the corps area to support corps and subordinate divisions.

  • The ground-based EW assets (DF and ECM) that arc habitually attached to divisions, giving them increased area coverage and DF capabilities, and support for ECM targeting.

  • The LRS company, which has reliable HUMINT collection capability 60 to 150 km forward of the corps FLOT. Team deployment is time phased based on the friendly concept of the operation, number of NAIs selected for coverage, availability of insertion and extraction means, and need for continuous coverage of corps deep NAIs.

Aerial Exploitation Battalion (AEB)

The AEB allows the commander to "see" the battlefield to the depth of the AO and beyond. The battalion gives you a deep look aerial reconnaissance, surveillance, and SIG INT collection capability. It provides-

  • The ability to weight the main effort by prioritizing intelligence support and responsiveness to subordinate commanders.

  • Moving target indicator coverage of corps NAIs, to include coverage along avenues of approach into the corps AO, and assembly areas or sectors where the corps has accepted risks in its intelligence or maneuver coverage.

  • SIGINT, intercept, and locational data. COMINT and ELINT reports can be sent in near-real-time (NRT) to multiple corps and divisional nodes to support situation and target development.

MI Brigade (EAC)

The Ml brigade (EAC) is tailored by contingency region (linguists, area analysts, etc. ) and function (equipment) for a specific geographic area. It directs, collects, processes, and disseminates HUMINT, CI, IMINT, SIGINT, and technical intelligence (TECHINT) (the exploitation of captured enemy documents, equipment, weapons, and other war material). The MI brigade (EAC) normally supports the Army components of a joint command.

Standard Tactical Missions

Support relationships arc established through the assignment of Army standard tactical missions (STM). These support relationships determine the degree of control and responsiveness of the IEW organizations supporting you. METT-T will drive the MI unit's STM in any given situation. There arc seven responsibilities inherent to each STM. The following matrix (Figure 4-1) demonstrates these responsibilities.

Figure 4-1. Standard Tactical Mission Responsibilities Matrix.


Your intelligence system has some limitations you must understand. These include-

    • Limited communications systems and architecture which, if not aggressively managed, can cause delays in the dissemination of information.
    • Single-source collectors that can be susceptible to enemy deception. All-source CM, using collection assets employing multiple disciplines, is required to guard against enemy deception.
    • Degraded COMINT and ELINT collection if the enemy chooses not to use communications and. noncommunications systems. For example, in Desert Storm, Iraq did not employ their push-to-talk communications for fear of being intercepted and DF'd.
    • Weather degradation of trafficability and the negative effects of high winds on antenna arrays and aviation collection and jamming systems.
    • Inability of ground-based systems to operate on the move. Positioning and integration of mutually supporting ground and airborne systems is critical to continuous support.
    • Lack of sufficient organic intelligence assets to satisfy all your intelligence requirements.

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