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Protecting the Support System

The enemy plans to disrupt the ability of logistics units to support tactical operations. C2 headquarters and critical CSG elements are targets. Threat forces attempt to --

  • Destroy CPs.
  • Disrupt communications and automation networks.
  • Interdict LOCs.
  • Disrupt supply distribution systems.
  • Degrade the capability of CSG units to sup port tactical operations.
  • Target regeneration sites.

The challenge for CSG and battalion commanders will be to balance mission requirements against survivability. To protect support operations, group and subordinate battalion staff need to plan how to --

  • Minimize enemy interference with C2, communications, and automation support.
  • Defeat Level I threats and respond appropriately to Level II and III threats.
  • Protect critical supply points or essential logistics facilities.
  • Prevent or reduce disruption of support missions.
  • Shift support to provide continuity of operations.









The depth of the corps rear area and requirements for dispersion complicate protection of logistics support assets and support operations. CSG and subordinate battalion commanders have to accept risks if support is to be responsive. Commanders need to challenge soldiers to employ additional self and unit protection initiatives.


The corps rear area extends from division rear boundaries to the forward edge of the COMMZ. Though terrain constrains the size of the corps force, the actual expanse of the corps rear area may exceed several hundred square miles. Except for the corps reserve and degraded units undergoing regeneration, it will usually be void of combat units.


Terrain management helps maintain freedom of movement and minimize fratricide. The corps G3 is the corps terrain manager. The corps rear CP operations cell positions units in the corps rear area through its subordinate RAOCs. RAOCs normally collocate with the CSG HHC. RAOCs position or reposition units within their area of responsibility. The rear CP operations cell coordinates with the corps G3 on positioning of units undergoing regeneration.

CSG units have unique terrain requirements. For example, they require storage space, an adequate road network, hardstand, and access to existing or improvised air strips, railheads, and water sources. Table 11-1 lists some sample positioning requirements for representative units or elements. CSG HNS branch personnel obtain information on terrain and existing facilities from CA and HN personnel.

The CSG support operations officer submits terrain mission positioning requirements to the sector RAOC. If necessary, the COSCOM support operations officer coordinates with the CSS cell of the corps rear CP to resolve terrain conflicts with the terrain managers in the operations cell.

Units coordinate positioning assignments and terrain requirements with the sector RAOC when they first enter the area. The DTO and CMCC/MCT inform the RAOC of units moving into the area from adjacent divisions, corps, or the COMMZ. MPs and MCT/MRT report locations of previously unknown units and ensure that all units enter the rear operations net.


Group and subordinate commanders have to balance the need for security against the need for dispersion. Distances between units depend on --

  • Habitual mission relationships.
  • Type of terrain and defense capability.
  • Existence and condition of road nets.
  • Accessibility of supply points to customers and resupply vehicles.
  • Disposition of other troops in the AO.
  • Probability of an attack by air versus artillery or small units.

Dispersion helps avoid catastrophic damage from air, artillery, and mass destruction weapons. CSGs and subordinate battalions position logistics units to provide redundancy. In an integrated battlefield, CSG units disperse to avoid destruction and reduce or contain NBC contamination. Terrain restrictions limit dispersion of units, even when an NBC threat exists. However, too much dispersion reduces mission support.


To provide responsive logistics support, group and battalion commanders have to accept risks. RAOC clustering of logistics elements reduces their vulnerability to ground attack but increases their vulnerability to air or NBC attacks. Locating supply points and MCPs away from MSRs reduces vulnerability. It also reduces their accessibility to supported units. Dispersing fuel and ammunition stocks reduces the risk of loss, but it also reduces distribution responsiveness.


Economy of force means that subordinate units basically defend themselves against disruption of support operations. Thus, all soldiers need to become proficient in basic tactical skills and development of defensive positions. All bases provide their own local security against Level I threats.

MK-19s enable a crew to engage threat forces and suppress lightly armored vehicles at ranges to 1500 meters. SAWs provide heavy volume automatic fires to repel close assaults at ranges up to 600 meters.


Threats have been identified for specific regions. Depending upon the level of conflict, CSG units may encounter threats which range from terrorist agents to an exploitation force. Threat forces attempt to destroy CPs. They will also try to disrupt supply distribution systems and degrade the capability of CSG units to support tactical operations.

Forces which may operate in a CSG's AO include agents or sympathizers. They may also include special operations forces, ground exploitation forces, and airborne forces. Deep operations into the corps rear area may be supported by air, artillery, radio electronic combat, and NBC weapons.


Rather than focus on the size or type of threat, units need to focus on the level of response required to defeat the threat. Levels of response are planned and assigned based on threat Levels I, II, or III.

  • Level I threats can be defeated by base defense forces.
  • Level II threats are beyond the capabilities of base defense forces but can be defeated by response forces, normally MP.
  • Level III threats require a corps command decision to commit a tactical combat force.

Subordinate battalion staff may operate a BCOC. BCOCs determine the level of threat and issue prearranged alerts to their bases. The threat level serves only as a guide for planning. It does not restrict response. Units often face one or more threat levels at one time.

CSG and subordinate battalion S2/S3 staff officers assess threat doctrine, tactics, organizations, and weapon systems capabilities. FMs 100-2-1, 100-2-2, and 100-2-3 describe threat forces, doctrine, tactics, and weapons. S2/S3 staff officers build an extensive data base for potential areas in which the CSG may operate. IPB products described in FM 34-130 can help them analyze threats which subordinate units may face.


Agents, sympathizers, or terrorists try to penetrate CPs and logistics facilities. They may listen in on the CSG's command operations net to gather data on support operations. That net could provide threat forces with data on the movement and position of supported and supporting units.

Base or base cluster self-defense measures help defeat these Level I threats. CSG units use physical security defense and COMSEC and OPSEC measures to deny agents and sympathizers access to facilities and communications and automation networks. Typical response actions include --

  • Manning OPs fully.
  • Increasing guards.
  • Spot-checking vehicles.
  • Alerting defensive perimeter personnel.
  • Increasing protection of key facilities.

FM 100-37 and TC 19-16 describe how to counter terrorism.


Special operations force missions include reconnaissance and sabotage. They interdict ground LOCs and raid CPs and critical logistics facilities. CSG and subordinate battalion commanders need to identify named areas of interest.

Primary targets in a CSG's AO include --

  • Command posts.
  • Corps storage area.
  • Class III and VII supply points.
  • Critical supply convoys.
  • Main supply routes.
  • Area RAOC.

CSGs rely on timely intelligence collection and dissemination of intelligence. S2/S3 staff use the IPB process to help determine the impact of the enemy on operations.

Level II type forces are beyond base or base cluster self defense capability. Units can only fix and contain these forces. A response force, normally M P with supporting fires, is needed todefeat this threat force. BDOCs or BCOCs may require --

  • Controlled access to all areas.
  • Reinforced perimeter defense.
  • OP withdrawal.
  • Reaction force be alerted.


Exploitation forces might drive the depth of the corps rear area as early as day two or three of the offensive. They try to disrupt distribution systems. Objectives may be to contain reserve forces; destroy key C2 facilities; and gain control of airfields, bridgeheads, or key terrain. Exploitation forces could also disrupt CSG support to deep and close operations and interdict MSRs.

Level III forces cannot be defeated by a response force. A command decision commits the corps' combined arms TCF to counter this threat.

CSGs rely on intelligence officers to identify enemy maneuver units which could employ in the CSG's AO. Subordinate units need to try to determine the size and intent of exploitation forces. They report their presence to the supporting RAOC. In addition, the BDOCs/BCOCs may require that --

  • OPs withdraw.
  • Reaction forces be committed.
  • Support operations cease.


Threat airborne forces might paradrop or airland forces deep in the corps rear area. Airborne missions may be to seize airfields, destroy nuclear delivery means, and disrupt logistics operations.

Forward CSG units or elements operating in the division area may encounter heliborne inserted forces. CSG units in the corps rear area may encounter enemy forces airlanded in the corps rear. CSG units rely upon early warning of airborne threats.

The IPB identifies probable targets (key terrain, bridges, river crossing sites, and blocking positions). IPB products also identify possible drop zones or landing zones in the CSG's area.


Once threat forces destroy priority targets, threat aircraft could attack the CSG's GS support base. Clustering logistics elements increases their vulnerability to air attacks. CSG rear operations defense plans include fire support request procedures.


Use of NBC weapons remains an ever present threat. Threat forces regard both nuclear and chemical weapons as weapons of mass destruction. However, they consider chemical munitions as conventional weapons and retain the right of first use.


Threat fire plans for echelons above division include contingency plans for nuclear strikes. Threat forces plan to use nuclear strikes to create holes in defense forces. This would allow breakthroughs into forward CSG AOs. Nuclear weaponry targets nuclear and chemical ammunition storage sites and reserve or regenerating forces in CSG sectors.


Nearly all conventional weapon systems have the ability to deliver chemical munitions. Initially threat use of chemical weapons may require the same level of decision as nuclear weapons. However, threat commanders use them more freely following the initial release authority.

Threat forces might use nonpersistent chemical agents against targets along the axis of approach, MSRs, and critical supply points. While nonpersistent chemical agents seriously disrupt rear area resupply and reinforcement, they leave forward supply points intact for later use by attacking forces. In contrast, threat forces could use persistent agents to contaminate the CSG's GS support base.


Biological warfare can target objectives in the corps rear area. Targets may include Class I points, water sources, troop concentrations, and supply convoys. Threat forces might also try to introduce biological agents "into the food chain or water supply sources before hostilities begin.


Survival of CSG personnel depends upon the protective measures existing at the time of the attack. It also depends on following SOP. Basic NBC defensive measures against NBC threats include contamination avoidance, individual and collective protection measures, and decontamination.

Contamination Avoidance

Avoiding contamination reduces requirements to take protective measures and decontaminate. FM 3-3 prescribes contamination avoidance measures.

Protective Measures

FM 3-4 prescribes NBC protective measures. Subordinate unit commanders user to FMs 3-4 and 3-100 to determine MOPP level. S2/S3 staff personnel assess vulnerability to chemical and biological hazards and evaluate NBC defense capabilities.


FM 3-5 prescribes decontamination procedures. Personnel decontamination is an individual responsibility. However, each subordinate unit performs decontamination operations to minimize contamination. Hasty decontamination is primarily a battalion responsibility.

The CSG S2/S3 requests assistance from chemical decontamination companies to perform deliberate decontamination. In an emergency, the CSG S2/S3 directs CEB teams to augment the hasty decontamination efforts of subordinate units.

Deliberate decontamination requires teams from a chemical decontamination company. Units report the toxic agent and estimate the scope of decontamination assistance required. Subordinate battalion S4s request deliberate decontamination support. S2/S3s request route clearance to the decontamination assembly area. They report requirements for large scale decontamination to the CSG NBC officer.

The Corps Chemical Decontamination Company (TOE 03017J300) provides equipment decontamination support to units in the corps rear area. This company supports CSG units within a given sector.


EMP could completely disrupt CSS automation support systems. All automated systems should have a manual backup. CSGs need to prepare to operate in a decentralized management mode, without CMMC management. Supply distribution systems continue to push critical supplies forward, based on corps priorities. Alternate or backup procedures need to exist for each type of logistics function.

As appropriate, Chapters 6 through 10 identify NBC concerns for each class of supply and field service. They also relate concerns relative to maintenance and transportation support on an integrated battlefield.


Rear operations missions are controlled through the tactical chain of command. As shown by Figure 11-1, command lines of communication flow from the rear operations commander, normally the deputy corps commander. The corps rear CP operations cell controls terrain management and rear security operations. The CSS cell coordinates support for corps operations. RAOCs extend that control over bases and base clusters. RAOCs provide tactical administration of rear operations within their assigned area.


The corps rear CP operations cell (TOE 52403L000) plans, coordinates, and directs corps rear operations. Its primary protection functions include --

  • Planning and controlling rear security operations.
  • Managing terrain in the corps rear area.
  • Synchronizing CSS operations in the corps rear area with the rear CP CSS cell.
  • Coordinating the rear IPB.
  • Monitoring close, deep, and adjacent rear operations.

Appendix C of FM 100-15 provides a complete list of functions performed by the operations cell.


The corps rear CP's CSS cell collects and analyzes CSS situation information. Staff personnel perform the following functions:

  • Recommend positioning of CSS units in the corps rear area.
  • Identify key CSS units and activities which require priority protection.
  • Synchronize CSS planning with maneuver planning to support the concept of operations.


Due to the expanse of the corps rear area, the corps rear CP operations cell delegates execution of rear operations to subordinate RAOCs It designates an area of responsibility within the corps rear area to each RAOC. Units entering or relocating within that area will coordinate with the sector RAOC. The RAOC makes sure that their desired location does not conflict with projected rear operations positioning or movement priorities.

RAOCs position units, form bases, and assign bases to base clusters. They designate base and base cluster commanders. In addition, they provide the following protection functions:

  • Provide a technical base for development of base defense plans.
  • Review base cluster defense plans.
  • Transmit information on operations in their area to the corps rear CP's operations cell.
  • Provide air defense alert status to base/base clusters within their area.
  • Execute rear security operations.


For mutual security and support, RAOCs assign units to a base or base cluster. RAOCs assign up to five units, company or detachment size, to a base. For security, bases maintain clearly defensible perimeters with established access controls. RAOCs group five bases within a base cluster, for a maximum of 25 units. From two to six base clusters may report to a RAOC. For rear operations, bases and base clusters are under the OPCON of the corps rear CP and its subordinate RAOCs.

Bases and base clusters are responsible for --

  • Securing critical facilities and likely landing areas.
  • Establishing communications in the rear operations tactical net.
  • Defeating all Level I threats.
  • Preventing or minimizing enemy disruption, ensuring continuous support of tactical operations.
  • Detecting and delaying enemy incursions.
  • Performing ADC.
  • Surviving a Level II or III threat until commitment of response forces or a TCF.

Sector RAOCs designate base or base cluster commanders. RAOCs could designate CSG battalion commanders or subordinate unit commanders as base commanders. Base commanders establish a BDOC to plan, coordinate, and supervise base defense operations. The base commander draws personnel and equipment from tenant units to form the BDOC. Table 11-2 lists BDOC tasks.

RAOCs will not designate group and higher headquarters commanders as base and base cluster commanders. However, RAOCs could designate CSG subordinate battalion commanders as base cluster commanders Base cluster commanders establish a BCOC to coordinate security for approximately five bases, encompassing from 20 to 25 units. Table 11-3 lists BCOC tasks.

For rear operations, the BCOC is the next higher tactical C2 headquarters over approximately 20 to 25 units. The BCOC establishes and maintains communications with its bases and the sector RAOC. It coordinates base defense operations and plans. The BCOC positions units within the base cluster. If the RAOC placed a hospital or other HSS unit within the cluster, the BCOC needs to plan how to provide security to these units.

Depending on corps priorities for support, the COSCOM coordinates with the corps rear CP to relieve staff in critical CSG battalions from being tasked to operate a BCOC. For example, the conventional DS/GS ammunition battalion or petroleum supply battalion should not be tasked to operate a BCOC.


Intelligence on enemy capabilities and early warning of incursions are critical. Once landed and dispersed, the enemy poses a greater threat. Sensors and ground surveillance radars provide early warning. ADA target acquisition systems provide early information on incoming enemy aircraft. The corps rear CP operations cell sends early warning information and IPB data through subordinate RAOCs which locate near each CSG HHC. In addition to IPB and LPB products, vulnerability analysis, and base/base cluster defense plans help protect support systems.


IPB products provide a continuous analysis of the effects of enemy capabilities. Staff officers use IPB products to analyze threat vulnerabilities and intentions. They also use IPB products to analyze the effects of terrain and weather on operations. IPB products provide information on usable terrain, road and water networks, and utilities and key facilities. FM 34-130 describes the IPB process.

The corps rear CP operations cell develops IPB templates and distributes IPB products through sector RAOCs Subsequent IPB products developed by S2/S3 staff in group and battalion headquarters focus on their area and the named areas of interests. They should include --

  • Enemy avenues of approach in their area of responsibility.
  • Likely air avenues of approach.
  • Possible objectives in their area of Level II forces.
  • Likely size of Levels II and III threat forces.
  • Named areas of interest.


COSCOM and CSG support operations staff officers develop LPB products based on IPB products. LPB products enable logisticians to ensure continuous support to maneuver forces despite threat operations in the corps rear area.

Group and battalion support operations staff officers need to assess the impact of the following areas on mission operations:

  • Locations of landing zones and airfields in the AO.
  • Friendly and enemy air corridors.
  • Forest and tree cover for concealment.
  • Natural obstacles.
  • Cover from ground observation.
  • Avenues of approach.
  • Overlays of built-up and congestion areas.
  • Threat force units and composition.
  • Threat weapon systems and their ranges.
  • Likely threat courses of action.
  • Names areas of interest or high priority targets within their AO.


If designated a base cluster commander, CSG battalion commanders analyze base defense capabilities and vulnerabilities. Damage assessment reports and situation reports provide input to the vulnerability analysis. RAOC personnel establish priorities based on this analysis.

RAOC operations personnel coordinate with CSG support operations staff and supporting MCTs to develop an MSR vulnerability analysis. This analysis needs to identify choke points, bypass routes, and lengths. The RAOC then identifies the most vulnerable choke points.


CSGs determine critical logistics assets within their AO. They prioritize and prepare a critical asset list for submission to the sector RAOC and COSCOM. The list should include key civilian assets important to support operations. Table 11-4 provides a sample list.


CID special agents help monitor the logistics pipeline and run an antiterrorism effort. While MPs pull security and reconnoiter MSRs, CID agents investigate lost or stolen equipment and supplies. They help make sure that logistics assets do not get borrowed through friendly unit diversions or siphoned off to the black market.


The base commander develops a base defense plan. If designated as a base cluster commander, CSG battalion commanders integrate all base defense plans into a base cluster defense plan. BCOC personnel can use base cluster defense planning work sheets like those at Table 11-5 to aid them in planning and preparing their base cluster defense plan. The base cluster commander submits the base cluster defense plan to the supporting RAOC for approval and recommendations. The RAOC reviews and coordinates all defense plans.

In addition to the areas covered by the defense plan, the RAOC may require that base/base cluster defense plans also identify --

  • Composition of response forces.
  • Critical missions and facilities
  • Critical roads, bridges, rail lines, airfields, and ports.
  • Location of hasty protective minefields.
  • Area landing zone and drop zone coordinates.
  • Enemy avenues of approach.
  • Security and patrol activities.
  • Provision for protection of forward employed teams and elements.

Forward CSG commanders coordinate with the division ADC-S to ensure that the division's defense plan covers CSB units and teams employed in the division area. Forward CSG rear operations planning needs to interface with division rear operations planning.


Timely and dual reporting of incursions and strikes is imperative. Companies assigned to bases and base clusters submit reports through both tactical and technical chains of commands.

As shown by Figure 11-2, subordinate units assigned to a base or base cluster report incursions and strikes to the RAOC in their sector. Subordinate units also report how attacks impact on their support mission through their technical chain of command. This ensures the continuation of support to supported units. Reports flow through the parent battalion, group, and COSCOM support operations sections to the rear CP CSS cell. Support operations officers at all levels need to receive rear operations situation reports to plan support to or around areas where fighting is taking place. CSG support operations staff officers analyze the impact. They determine logistics requirements and alert supporting units of changes in support.


CSG units use battlefield deception measures to distort, conceal, or falsify unit dispositions and support capabilities. Deception operations force the enemy to hold in place or commit too early or too late, They might also cause the enemy to commit inappropriate forces at the wrong time and place. Deception planning needs to bean integral part of CSG S2/S3 and support operations staff planning.


To conduct effective deception, CSG intelligence officers need to identify CSS intelligence collection threats. They then assess the group's vulnerabilities to those threats and recommend countermeasures. To ensure that threat forces view deception countermeasures as plausible and authentic, intelligence officers need to know --

  • What the threat relies on to get his intelligence.
  • Where the threat's information collection capabilities are.
  • What type of deception information might the threat accept.


The corps BDC plans the deception story and provides deception planning support. Under staff supervision of the corps G3, it prepares the deception annex to the corps OPORD. Corps BDC personnel determine the deception signature (communications and visual), deception devices, and methods to employ.

Based on the corps deception plan, the corps rear CP may task CSG units to execute events using deception devices and decoys. CSG S3 and support operations staff officers recommend ways to deceive the threat as to support operations of subordinate units. FMs 34-60 and 90-2 provide specific information on staff responsibilities in support of battlefield deception plans.


Signature management focuses on reducing key unique signatures associated with the intended course of action while exploiting signatures associated with a second COA.

CSG units use electronic deception techniques to augment or mask signatures. The deception objective may be to mislead the threat about the size, activity, and location of supported as well as supporting units. Electronic deception techniques which CSG units use to support the corps deception plan include --

  • Transmitting false information on support capability in planned messages.
  • Creating an impression of unusual unit activity.
  • Observing periods of radio silence to create the impression of forthcoming unit movements.
  • Using dummy codes in valid LOGSIT messages.
  • Changing the length of formatted messages.
  • Routing messages to other stations in the CSG command operations net. This creates the impression that all units in the net appear equally committed.
  • Projecting unit signatures from a false location, while suppressing signatures from actual locations.
  • Rerouting threat message traffic on another net frequency. This misleads the threat into thinking his forces have the wrong frequency.


The size and vehicular movement associated with receipt, storage, and issue operations of subordinate CSG units make logistics facilities difficult to conceal. CSG units need to continually attempt to hide the real and display the false.

Hide the Real

Ways for CSG units to conceal logistics operations include --

  • Using trains, houses, factory buildings, subway tunnels, and buses for storage, maintenance, and transportation operations.
  • Using civilian trucks, converted buses, and civilian cars to transport supplies.
  • Building dummy peasant huts or grass shacks over CPs and OPs.
  • Disguising packages and containers to look like those used by local civilians.
  • Setting up supply points in unorthodox positions
  • Screening logistics support activities with smoke.
  • Using night or periods of limited darkness to hide logistics operations.
  • Reporting or tracking false supply movement on supply routes.

Display the False

Ways to lead the threat to believe CSG logistics activities operate where in reality none exist
include --

  • Using fuel drums and empty ammunition boxes to represent supply points.
  • Portraying indicators normally associated with unit activity. They include latrines, trash, concertina wire, tentage, laundry, and foot and vehicle tracks.
  • Using smoke to obscure a dummy supply point or simulate activity.
  • Spraying surplus fuel around a dummy Class III point to display the presence of fuel storage.
  • Using tapes of noises associated with CSG units during periods of limited visibility to simulate the presence or movement of support activities. Tapes can be made while on training exercises. The corps deception cell arranges with S3 staff for loud speaker sets.
  • Simulating the evacuation, abandonment, or destruction of supplies and equipment.

NOTE: Units must not perform any of the above techniques in isolation. Each activity forms part of the corps deception plan.


CSG units use decoys to deceive the threat. Decoys force the threat to use some of its intelligence assets. They help divert his attention from real operations. Units might use unserviceable items, salvage, or combat loss items as decoys. Manufactured plastic or inflatable decoys may be used. The corps BDC determines which specific decoys and devices to use to support the G3's deception plan.

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