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"There are five methods of attacking with fire. The first is to burn personnel; the second, to burn stores; the third, to burn equipment; the fourth, to burn arsenals; and the fifth, to use incendiary missiles."
                                               Sun Tzu

The Art of War

In all four LIC categories, leaders must modify the TTPs of supporting operations. They must base the use of combat and CS elements on the political and METT-T factors. This chapter provides information for planning and using combat and CS elements. It emphasizes tactical operations but includes techniques of employment for each category. This chapter also discusses fire support planning, engineer support, Army aviation support, MI support, MP support, signal support, PSYOP, CA operations, and NBC operations.

Section I.

The main factors in planning fire support are the restrictions on its use. In LIC environments, restrictions are greater than in conventional conflicts. The commander integrates his fire support into his tactical plan IAW those restrictions. This normally limits the use of fire support. However, the commander ensures fire support for possible contingencies.


Commanders should apply the fire support planning principles listed in FM 6-20, but they should also consider the following when planning for a low-intensity conflict.

a. Plan early and continuously.

    (1) Obtain commander's guidance. Normally restrictive in nature, the FSCOORD must translate this guidance to determine where, what, and how fire support can support his guidance. Host nation rules and political implications greatly influence the commander's guidance and therefore fire support actions.

    (2) Identify or request appropriate fire support assets. Based upon the commander's guidance, compare the capabilities and limitations of each of the assets to obtain a best solution.

    (3) Identify or establish liaison requirements. To ensure proper planning with accurate information and expertise, acquire the needed personnel with the background and experience.

    (4) Update the plan continuously. The nature of LIC is one of constant change. Some of the factors include--

  • Rules of engagement.

  • Change in the threat (change in loyalties and political alignment).

  • Weather.

  • Deployment status.

  • Personnel changes (enemy and friendly).

  • Tactical situation (unit locations, patrol routes).

b. Follow the commander's targeting guidance.

    (1) Detail guidance. ROE and other restrictions require detailed and well-disseminated guidance. The guidance must also be in a simple format so that it can be understood at the lowest level.

    (2) Identify possible high-payoff targets (HPT) for fire support engagement. Tie assets to possible targets.

    (3) Place restrictions on certain types of munitions (FASCAM, WP, smoke, illumination).

c. Exploit all available targeting assets.

    (1) Include all information sources in the fire support plan (HUMINT, EW, RADAR, RECON FLIGHTS).

    (2) Consider the timeliness of the targeting source especially for the small-size target and fleeting nature of targets associated with LIC.

    (3) Consider target location error and reliability of the targeting assets.

d. Consider the use of all available fire support means, both lethal and nonlethal.

    (1) Understand the commander's intent and guidance. In a LIC environment using the minimum-essential force means balancing the expected effects with the collateral damage associated with asset. Other considerations include the following:

  • Range/deflection probable errors.

  • Bursting radius.

  • Target location error.

  • Target verification.

  • Response time.

  • Gun-target line.

  • Minimum safe distances.

  • Political implications of damage (using WP in a dry environment may cause fires that could burn an entire village or crop).

    (2) Consider nonlethal means.

e. Use the lowest echelon that can provide effective support.

    (1) In a LIC environment, the nonlinear battlefield requires responsive and seemingly decentralized fire support execution. However, centralized planning due to ROE and political restraints, as well as possible clearance procedures, may not support typical decentralized fire support coordination. For example, guidance that all indirect fires may have to be cleared by battalion or brigade would include 60-mm mortars at company level. However, this type of guidance implies a higher level of coordination when compared to the level of employment.

    (2) To provide the fire support umbrella, many of the assets may have to be positioned throughout the area of operations. This may require decentralized operations as well as delineating nonstandard missions.

f. Furnish the type of support requested. Dissemination of the commander's guidance to the lowest level is vital. Otherwise, FSCOORDs may have to disapprove or modify the request for a specific fire support asset.

g. Avoid duplication of fire support. The FSCOORD must ensure duplications of fire support are resolved and that only the minimum force needed for the desired effects is used.

h. Consider airspace coordination.

    (1) Establish a liaison with the A2C2 element. Consider civilian aircraft and flight routes.

    (2) Identify liaison requirements such as the ANGLICO and Air Force liaison officer.

    (3) Include restrictions such as flying at night and the use of informal ACA.

i. Provide adequate fire support. Advise the maneuver commander when fire support assets do not meet his guidance. It is imperative that the FSCOORDs recommend other solutions.

j. Provide rapid and effective coordination.

    (1) Disseminate clearance procedures and ROE to the lowest level.

    (2) Monitor and update fire support coordination measures (FSCM) constantly.

    (3) Adhere to host nation rules.

    (4) Inform liaison personnel as to procedures and ROE.

k. Provide for flexibility.

    (1) Provide mutual support for indirect fires.

    (2) Provide backup assets for unfavorable weather conditions.

    (3) Position indirect assets for a 6400-mil capability.

    (4) Consider backup communications procedures.

    (5) Know limitations based upon terrain characteristics and adapt accordingly (such as adjustment by sound in the jungle).

l. Provide for safeguarding and survivability of friendly forces and installations.

    (1) Consider integrating maneuver and fire support assets on a fire support base for mutual defense.

    (2) Formulate FSCMs that provide safeguards (such as no-fire areas and restrictive fire areas).


The application of firepower must always reflect the principle of minimum-essential force. FA support normally provided to light infantry divisions includes the 105-mm howitzer. FA units in the division artillery provide weapons of larger calibers. If the supported unit is not light infantry, its organic assets consist of 155-mm howitzers. Artillery batteries normally operate from the battalion operational base when widely dispersed. FA missions include DS, reinforcing, GS, and GS reinforcing. Organic artillery is employed either in a DS capacity with a habitually associated maneuver unit or in a series of fire bases (GS) to cover an area of operation. The pattern of enemy forces requires quick response. FA provides a rapid means of placing accurate, lethal fire on moving guerrilla forces. Also, FA officers and NCOs can provide training, advice, and assistance in tactics and techniques of employment in military assistance roles.

a. Missions. Along with supporting tactical maneuver units, FA fires are effective in accomplishing or supporting--

    (1) Security posts, checkpoints, roadblocks, and patrols. This is accomplished by fire plans, fire direction nets, and use of ground and airborne FOs. Artillery fire can also disrupt enemy routes and provide fire support near DZs and LZs before, during, and after an assault landing.

    (2) Deception plans. This is accomplished by placing artillery fires in areas other than those in which an operation is planned. This can distract enemy forces from the main effort.

    (3) Populace and resources control operations. This is accomplished by providing illumination for police-type cordon-and-search operations or raids. FA can also plan the use of illumination for defense against guerrilla attacks on installations. These installations include airbases, power plants, communications centers, supply points, bridges, or communities. Also, planned fires can defend a convoy or tactical column.

    (4) Psychological operations. FA fires provide nonlethal fire support to PSYOP or conventional units in all the LIC categories.

b. Concept. Timely and effective FA fire can quickly hinder enemy activity. To provide effective fire support, commanders use FA to obtain maximum area coverage with available weapons by placing batteries in each battalion operational base. FA can also provide area fire support to defend depots, logistic complexes, population centers, and other critical points. With its greater area coverage, some FA can always be within range of an attacking force. This outweighs the need for massing the fires of a battalion or battery against small targets. FA fires can be requested by the supported tactical force, self-defense forces, police, security elements, and other support units.

c. Coordination. Commanders must closely coordinate FA with tactical operations as well as with civilian activities of the host nation.

    (1) The senior FA officer at each echelon of maneuver command is designated the FSCOORD.

    (2) The FSO from company through brigade establishes and maintains the FSE. At battalion and brigade, FSEs are manned by artillery personnel and may be augmented by TACP or ANGLICO personnel if assets arc available.

    (3) The use of FA may require further augmentation to aid coordination in obtaining authority to fire, based on the ROE.

    (4) Lack of time can preclude preparing a formal, coordinated, and integrated fire support plan. Therefore, SOPs should provide for all likely contingencies. Close liaison and continuous contact between the supported commander and the FSCOORDs provide the required coordination. However, in operations involving wide employment of maneuver and support forces, coordination measures must ensure that converging friendly units do not call fire upon one another. For this purpose, an RFL may be employed.

d. COIN Operations. These operations normally dictate--

    (1) Greater decentralization of organic, attached, and reinforcing fire support.

    (2) Reduced ability for brigade-level control and coordination of fires within the operations area.

    (3) Added security requirements for firing positions of indirect-fire weapons. This includes planning of direct fires for defense and coordination of US or host nation military forces to augment the security of the FA unit.

    (4) A need to fire in all directions.

    (5) Support to local defensive forces and static security posts.

    (6) Use of fire support that avoids friendly casualties. Such casualties could estrange the populace and produce hostility toward the host government. Close coordination is vital with host nation military and civilian authorities to locate villages, population centers, and religious institutions.

    (7) Close coordination with host country officials in the operations area.


Firing elements of mortar platoons/sections occupy positions with the battalion/company or within operational bases. The mortar platoon/section provides the most responsive indirect fire to a battalion/company. It is normally under battalion/company control.


Antitank units are not normally employed in their primary role in LIC. When no armor threat exists, the commander may consider using the antitank elements to destroy hardened targets or may consider leaving the TOW missile in a secure staging area, using crews in other roles. These personnel are best used as part of the security force for the battalion operational base. Also, consolidated antitank companies/platoons may be at the brigade level to perform specific missions for the brigade commander such as scouts or convoy security. Many vehicles can carry the .50-caliber machine gun, M60 machine gun, or MK 19. Before these weapons systems are attached, crews must be trained in their operation, employment, and ROE.


Air defense combines all active and passive measures to counter hostile air operations. In a LIC, the hostile air threat may be none, minimal, or existing.

a. If the threat is none or minimal, the commander must consider leaving ADA weapons in a rear staging area. ADA personnel may be used as a security force for the operational base. Also Vulcans may be used in the direct-fire role for base security, convoy security, and so forth. If this course of action is selected, commanders must realize that an enemy can always be supported by an outside air threat. If ADA personnel are separated from their ADA weapons, a minimal air attack could destroy friendly forces. Commanders must plan for such an attack by hostile or sympathetic forces.

b. If the enemy force mounts an air attack or when an air threat exists, ADA assets must react quickly. Units must employ ADA as in a conventional environment. The commander establishes the priority of protection.


Attack helicopters are a highly mobile and immediate-response maneuver element that can attack targets anywhere on the battlefield by fire. These abilities apply to LIC operations to include--

  • Overwatch and security for air assault operations to include the objective area.

  • Overwatch and security for surface convoys to include ground, water, and rail movements.

  • Armed reconnaissance and surveillance to include target marking and destruction under certain conditions.

  • Augmentation of the firepower of committed forces.

  • Use as a psychological impact and show of force.


The USAF flies tactical air operations in support of LIC operations. The USAF ALO at brigade headquarters can coordinate and assist in requesting support.

a. Close Air Support. CAS supports surface operations by attacking hostile targets near friendly surface forces.

    (1) CAS can support offensive, counteroffensive, and defensive surface force operations with planned or immediate attacks. All such missions require detailed coordination and integration with the fire and maneuver plans of friendly surface forces. CAS missions require corridors to the battlefield, timely intelligence information, and accurate weapons delivery.

    (2) CAS enhances surface force operations by delivering a wide range of weapons and massed firepower at decisive points. It can surprise the hostile force, create opportunities for the maneuver or advance of friendly forces, protect the flanks of friendly forces, blunt hostile offensives, and protect the rear of surface forces during rear battle maneuvers.

b. Air Reconnaissance. Air reconnaissance collects information from airborne, orbital, and surface-based sensors. USAF R&S efforts are part of the national intelligence-gathering effort and observation process. These operations provide much data that are key to developing national security policy, force postures, planning actions, force employment, and informed responses in times of crises. Surveillance operations collect data continuously from the aerospace and from the earth's surface and subsurface. Reconnaissance operations are directed toward local or other targets. Through R&S various data are collected such as meteorological, hydrographical, geographical, electronic, and communications characteristics. The products of R&S operations apply strategically and tactically in both peace and war. Strategic and tactical R&S provides timely notice of hostile intent, and actions and data vital to the NCAs and combat commanders. These operations help to identify the composition and determine the ability of hostile forces.

c. Tactical Airlifts. Airlifts deploy, employ, and sustain forces under conditions that range from peace to war. As a combat mission, airlifts provide combat power through airdrops, extractions, and airlanding of ground forces and supplies. Through mobility operations, the joint or combined force commander can maneuver fighting forces to exploit hostile weaknesses. As a CS mission, airlifts provide logistic support by transporting personnel and equipment. In peacetime, airlifts provide military assistance and civilian relief programs to enhance national objectives. Aircraft assets may also be used to dispense flares and leaflets. They are equipped with speakers and spraying apparatus for forest firefighting. Airlifts provide the timely movement, delivery, and recovery of personnel, equipment, and supplies, and enhance military and national goals. They can be strategic or tactical. Strategic (intertheater) airlifts can be employed for any theater under the central direction of a higher authority, normally in support of an overall effort. Tactical (intratheater) airlifts are performed within a theater of operations and support theater objectives.

d. Psychological Operations. PSYOP support national objectives by changing the attitudes and behavior of hostile, neutral, or friendly groups. All USAF commands and agencies conduct or support PSYOP. In planning and executing operations, commanders should know the psychological implications and opportunities common to each action. They must ensure that the signals transmitted are as intended. Both action and inaction can send a message to enhance perceptions of abilities or to influence others to support friendly objectives. Depending on the means of communications, national objectives, and planned actions, psychological efforts can be devised to reinforce operations. These include planned communications through electronic means or printed matter; a show of force or demonstrations of superiority; an attack on a specific target; actions to harass and disrupt hostile operations; surprise, shock action, and deception; or humanitarian operations. These efforts must be coordinated with Army PSYOP through attached PSYOP personnel.

e. Weather Service. The USAF weather service provides timely and accurate environmental data to support strategic, tactical, and mobility operations. It gathers, analyzes, and provides meteorological data for mission planning. Environmental data are needed to conduct both air and surface operations.


Ship batteries deliver NGF to support amphibious operations and maneuver units operating in coastal areas. When NGF provides support, each ship is assigned the tactical mission of DS or GS. A ship in DS supports a battalion and delivers planned and immediate fires. A ship in GS supports a brigade and delivers adjusted fires. NGF may also be assigned on a fire-mission basis to a subordinate maneuver unit. The force commander must be aware that NGF is high-velocity, low-trajectory fire and therefore has inherently large range probable error on flat terrain.

a. In a LIC environment, the use of NGF is governed by the same limits and the same principle of "minimum-essential force" as when using FA. If FA can be used in an insurgency, NGF can also be used. One advantage is that supported ground units do not need to provide security to the firing ships.

b. A liaison platoon (from USMC) is normally attached to the brigade. It provides specialists and communications to control, coordinate, and recommend use of NGF or naval air.

Section II.

LIC operations require an increase in engineer support for both psychological and tactical reasons.


The LIC area of operations normally has poorly developed road nets. Road systems, installations, and airfields typically must be built to accomplish tasks. Forces involved in LIC operations require engineer support in both combat and sustainment engineering missions. The probable mine/booby trap threat in a LIC area of operations warrants the need for combat engineers. Sustainment engineering develops the logistics facilities and transportation infrastructure used by US forces. The engineers provide support in all engineer battlefield mission areas in LIC operations.

a. Mobility is geared toward improving the movement of maneuver units and critical supplies. Its aim is to reduce or negate the effects of obstacles. Examples of mobility operations include clearing of LZs, construction of combat trails, assault bridging, reduction of roadblocks, breaching of obstacles, mine sweeping, removal of booby traps, and route reconnaissance.

b. Countermobility is geared toward reducing the enemy's mobility and effectiveness. This is done by installing obstacles. Some obstacles may destroy targets; most enhance or complement weapon effectiveness. Examples of conventional obstacles are minefields, wire entanglements, roadblocks, and barriers. These obstacles are integrated into the maneuver plan and are covered by observation and fires.

c. Survivability is the development of protective positions, fighting positions, and protective obstacles. Examples include building perimeter defense positions in operating bases, CPs, LZs, medical facilities, shelters, and storage facilities; and building field fortifications.

d. Sustainment engineering missions add to nation assistance. Construction of facilities, support to government or civil agencies, and support for the population may become central to the operation. While organic engineer elements can provide sustainment engineering support to the force, additional engineer units are needed for most of the construction needed. The combat (heavy) units are most important for developing logistics facilities, roads, and airfields. Examples of general engineering missions include--

  • Road construction and repair.

  • Temporary structures for the local populace.

  • Fixed bridges.

  • Aid in civic action.

  • Location of potable water sources and, if required, water drilling.

e. Topographic engineering provides commanders with information about the terrain. Topographic operations, in a LIC environment, involve the functions of terrain analysis and topographic production. All engineers are terrain analysts and assist others to use the ground effectively. Terrain analysis is the process of interpreting natural and man-made features of a geographic area, and the influence of weather and climate on these features to predict their effect on military operations. Examples of terrain analysis products include cross-country movement (wet/dry weather), lines of communication, river crossing, and cover and concealment information. Terrain analysis products are usually provided in limited quantities for staff use: the topographic production of map-based graphics, reproduction of these graphics, and the production of topographic survey data. Production capabilities produce such products as operations and intelligence overlays and overprints, map substitutes (photomaps), expedient revisions to standard maps, draft manuscripts of terrain analysis overlays and graphics, and precise survey and geodetic positions.


The commander can expect to be supported by at least a division engineer company. Other companies and elements of the division engineer battalion are normally required. Engineer units from corps and Army level can be attached to the engineer battalion or placed in DS. When in an isolated area, the commander can expect the engineer units to be attached. He must coordinate with other units to provide all CSS.


Engineer units in support of task force operations need increased security. Engineers spend much of their time interfacing with the populace during civil action projects. Although the engineers can secure themselves, their full abilities cannot be used if they are conducting security. Commanders should assign this mission to infantry or military police.


Combat engineers can be used in the secondary role as infantry during combat operations as a last resort. The authority to employ them as infantry rests with the division commander. They can also be used as trainers on basic mobility, countermobility, and survivability skills. Engineers contribute more toward achieving national goals as civic action units than as infantry. They can be used as infantry--

  • During attacks on the operational base.

  • When all tactical units are committed and a threat arises.

  • As reserves when the threat has caused the commitment of all available reserves. (See FM 5-100.)

When used as infantry, engineers must be the commander can expect the augmented with fire support.

Section III.

Army aviation can provide support to US, host country, or transient forces. The availability of aviation support affects the tactics of supported units. Army aviation assists maneuver commanders to perform intelligence, mobility, firepower, command and control, communications, and CSS functions. (The use of attack helicopters was discussed in Section I.) This section discusses other missions and the organizations of Army aviation support.


Typical support tasks, other than attack helicopter operations, performed by aviation units include the following:

  • Aerial CP for command and control of ground maneuver elements.

  • Aerial R&S and target acquisition, to include visual reconnaissance and the use of photographic, infrared, and radar sensors, are made available to the brigade through higher headquarters.

  • Adjustment of artillery fire (aerial observation).

  • Battlefield illumination.

  • Air assault operations to include assault operations and airlift for reserves.

  • Augmentation of USAF R&S.

  • Dissemination of chemical agents and smoke.

  • Radio relay.

  • Message drop and pickup.

  • Airdrop of personnel.

  • Convoy security.

  • Mapping and survey.

  • Emergency medical evacuation.

  • Liaison.

  • Command and staff transportation.

  • Chemical and radiological monitoring.

  • Column control.

  • Screening.

  • Delivery of critical personnel, supplies, and material to isolated areas.

  • Deception.

  • Mine laying.

  • Electronic warfare (monitor, jam, direction finding, intercept).


US Army aviation resources are normally OPCON to the brigade commander. In LIC, they must bring their aviation logistic support with them. Other than attack helicopter units, the commander can expect both CS aviation and aerial surveillance units to be OPCON. The number of aircraft depends on political and METT-T factors.

a. CS aviation units, when in support of the brigade, provide tactical air movement of personnel, supplies, and equipment. A CS aviation company can--

    (1) Provide continuous operations during good visibility and limited operations under low visibility.

    (2) Provide airlift for the assault elements of one rifle company.

    (3) Augment the evacuation ability of medical air ambulance elements.

b. Aerial surveillance units extend surveillance and target acquisition abilities of the brigade. This is due to the use of sensor equipment and aerial observers. An aerial surveillance company can--

    (1) Conduct sustained surveillance of part of the brigade area. This task can be performed both day and night and in most weather conditions.

    (2) Conduct aerial reconnaissance of routes and areas.

    (3) Acquire target acquisition information by aerial means.

    (4) Collect information for poststrike analysis of air and artillery attacks.

    (5) Provide an airfield terminal control facility.

Section IV.

MI at the tactical level is of prime importance. (The IPB process is discussed in Chapter 6.) This section focuses on the missions, organization of intelligence assets, categories of information, disciplines used to produce and collect data, and synchronization of these elements. Also discussed are the principles of IEW and special environmental considerations.


The tactical MI element collects, processes, and disseminates combat information and intelligence. It provides intelligence support to OPSEC, deception, and EW.


The brigade and battalions normally have an MI staff section. Due to the decentralized nature of LIC operations, parts of division and corps assets may be attached to brigades. In turn, brigades may attach elements down to battalion. The tactical MI must be coordinated with existing intelligence operations (either host country or US) in the area. The brigade commander should request IEW support that provides intelligence, combat information, EW, OPSEC, and interrogation, which, in turn, must be responsive to his needs.


Two categories of information that are important to commanders are combat information and intelligence.

a. Combat information is time sensitive and can be used for tactical missions. It can be used for fire and maneuver decisions with minimal assessment, validation, or processing (interpretation or integration). Combat information is seldom formed above battalion level.

b. Intelligence is information requiring some form of validation, integration, and comparison. This comparison is made before the information can be used or fully exploited.


To counter the insurgency, a multidiscipline intelligence collection effort must be used. This multidiscipline effort includes the use of HUMINT, SIGINT, IMINT, MASINT, and TECINT. Under the guidance of counterintelligence, counter-HUMINT is the best discipline that can disrupt or delay the insurgents' HUMINT collection capability/process.

a. Human Intelligence. HUMINT is the category of intelligence derived from information collected and provided by human sources. HUMINT consists of interrogation of EPWs, exploitation of captured documents, LRSU, fire support teams, scout platoons, aerial scouts and observers, CI liaison with local populace, and CI low-level source operations.

b. Signal Intelligence. SIGINT is effective only if the threat has communication equipment that can be intercepted and monitored.

c. Imagery Intelligence. IMINT is derived from radar, infrared, and photographic sensors. The data are analyzed through imagery interpretation (II) and can identify and locate enemy bases, concentrations, and activities.

d. Measurement and Signature Intelligence. MASINT is the intelligence derived from the measurement and signature of threat systems putting out electromagnetic energy.

e. Threat Equipment Intelligence. TECINT is the intelligence derived from captured threat equipment.

NOTE: The integration of information from each of these sources, along with other intelligence, provides a composite. It allows the commander to "see" the battlefield. It provides the time and flexibility to react to contingencies.

f. Counterintelligence. This includes deception operations, OPSEC, and COMSEC.

    (1) Deception operations. These are actions that deceive the enemy by denying information and mislead the enemy by providing false information.

    (2) Operations security. OPSEC deprives the enemy of intelligence needed to create situations in which the friendly force can be taken by surprise.

    (3) Communications security. COMSEC actions deny enemy intelligence from friendly communication networks.


In LIC, HUMINT provides the major part of available intelligence. Technical and electronic assets can provide data to enhance the force's intelligence means. To disrupt or delay the insurgent collection process, counterintelligence is used. By taking advantage of collection and counterintelligence efforts and synchronizing them, the commander can deceive the enemy.


EW principles for AirLand Battle apply to LIC. However, the intelligence indicators for enemy activity are unique. Development and application of proper indicators are key steps in the collection effort.

a. US Army commitment in a LIC can occur suddenly or slowly. The IEW staff or security assistance office assists in developing the intelligence part of contingency plans for US assistance. US MI support consists of advice, financial and material aid, provisions for professional education, and development of an intelligence documentary data base. Most of this effort is aimed at the host country national level. However, mobile trainers and advisors may be sent throughout the country to subnational levels. Some MI advisors may assist paramilitary and nonmilitary elements in developing HUMINT sources and in exploiting the data they provide.

b. US military involvement in a LIC can shift quickly from the advisory role to an operational role. Those intelligence functions already set would continue. Other roles that augment the MI effort include--

  • Military assistance at provincial and lower level.

  • Civil affairs.

  • Psychological operations.

  • Population and resource control.

  • Tactical operations.

  • Combined MI operations with the host country in the form of interrogation, materiel and document exploitation, and imagery interpretation centers.


In the LIC operational categories of counterinsurgency and combatting terrorism (and possibly in peacetime contingency), successful intelligence operations require close coordination and interaction between US and host country intelligence agencies. Support from US national level agencies is routed by way of the US country team to a central host country entity. This entity produces an all-source intelligence picture for the entire country. The title of this entity varies from country to country. For the purposes of this discussion, we will refer to it as the National Intelligence Center (NIC). The NIC is organized to direct and coordinate the activities of all host country intelligence agencies. This includes military, paramilitary, and police intelligence operations nationwide.

a. Similar entities exist at the subnational level. The names of these entities also vary from country to country. For the sake of this discussion, we will refer to them as Regional Intelligence Centers (RICs). RICs are established in conflictive areas and are organized and function in the same manner as the NIC. Both the NIC and the RIC are under the direction and control of the host country. However, supporting US MI activities develop close relations with their NIC/RIC counterparts. RICs have the following missions:

  • Coordinate the collection activities of all military and security elements within its region.

  • Perform all-source analysis of all available information.

  • Produce all-source target packages for friendly combat units.

  • Cue CA and PSYOP units to areas of increased concern.

b. US Army MI efforts support the missions to and assumed by the NPCCs and ACCs by--

  • Determining intelligence objectives.

  • Integrating local intelligence programs with host country national programs.

  • Evaluating intelligence resources.

  • Organizing and training new intelligence activities.

  • Formulating new intelligence plans.

  • Establishing priorities and allocating resources.

  • Conducting an active liaison program.

c. If US tactical forces are committed to a host country, intelligence personnel of the tactical forces work with the combined intelligence elements already in place.

d. In LIC, US MI personnel support the host country both in advice and assistance roles and, when required, as a part of military operations. The MI officers of various elements may have to coordinate requirements in creative ways. Chains of command and political makeup of the host country are defined and used as the basis for setting up support channels.

e. The terrain and weather conditions of a possible LIC operational area are important to both the human factors and material maintenance. The conditions discussed in the following paragraphs also apply to a LIC.

Section V.

Army preparedness is maintained for special environments in which many unique challenges exist. This paragraph outlines considerations for adapting core doctrine to special operations in jungle, desert, mountain, winter, and urban terrain.


The jungle regions of Asia, Africa, and the western hemisphere are potential battlefields. Jungles vary from tropical rain forests and secondary growth forests to swamps and tropical savannas. The dominant features of jungle areas are thick vegetation, high and constant temperatures and humidity, and heavy rainfall. Military operations in jungles are affected by two factors--climate and vegetation. These factors combine to restrict movement, observation, fields of fire, communications, and battlefield intelligence collection operations. Both factors constrain a unit's operational and sustainment abilities. They demand unique measures to reduce their effects. (See FM 90-5.)


Many desert areas of the world are vital to the national interests of the US and demand Army readiness. Deserts may be semiarid or arid. Available water is a prime factor in planning and conducting desert operations. Deserts can have extremes of cold and heat, good visibility and blinding sandstorms, drought and sudden rains, water shortages and flash floods, and good trafficability and interspersed obstacles. Some of the many characteristics of desert operations include rapid movement of large units, good observation and long fields of fire, mandatory use of deception, and lack of key terrain. (See FM 90-3.)


Mountain regions are found throughout the world, from the arctic to the tropics. They have a major influence on military operations. Mountain operations are characterized by reduced ranges for flat-trajectory fire, increased importance of indirect fire, mobility canalized along valley floors, decentralized combat, increased collection operations from heights higher than lines of communications, and reduced command and control abilities. (See FM 90-6.)


The effects of arctic conditions have a major influence on military operations. Winter is characterized by long nights, extreme cold, and deep snow. This can degrade weapons performance due to brittleness, ice or fog over optic sights, and ice loading on antennas and intake filters. Winter conditions increase the time required to perform even simple tasks. They also have adverse effects on soldiers' health and morale. (See FM 31-71.)

Section VI.

MP units can be an effective part of LIC operations by performing their normal duties. They operate along with host country civil and military police. MP units can conduct continuous patrol operations and are a valuable source for intelligence collection. Also, they are organized and equipped to perform battlefield circulation control, area security, EPW operations, and law and order operations. They can also serve as an economy of force in force protection and security roles.


MP units are well suited for a variety of tasks in each of the operational categories:

a. Counterinsurgency operations to include--

    (1) Police-type operations.

    (2) Search operations. MP units conduct searches in support of cordon-and-search operations by manning or supervising search parties, securing persons or property captured, and evacuating prisoners.

    (3) Checkpoints and roadblocks.

    (4) Search of built-up areas.

    (5) Civil disturbance and riot control.

    (6) Raids.

    (7) Patrols.

    (8) Ambushes.

    (9) Base defense.

    (10) Lines of communication. MP units assist in securing lines of communication. They do this by road and aerial patrolling, setting up traffic control points, escorting convoys, and reconnoitering in their area of responsibility. MP units can combat small enemy elements or can act as fixing elements until combat units arrive.

    (11) Populace and resource control. Operations in an insurgency may involve extensive police activities. MP units can control the host country populace and material resources. This includes screening, identification, registration, enforcement of curfews, operation of patrols and checkpoints, and investigation of crime.

    (12) Prisoners. MP units process, secure, and evacuate captured persons and detainees IAW FM 19-40, DA directives, and host nation agreements.

    (13) Intelligence operations. Since guerrilla activities often overlap with criminal activities, police activities can develop informants and informant nets. These can produce intelligence and information.

b. Combatting terrorism to include--

    (1) Physical security.

    (2) Operational security.

    (3) Personnel security. MP units provide physical security to personnel and installations that may include designated communities.

c. Peacekeeping to include--

    (1) Show of force.

    (2) Raids.

    (3) Noncombatant evacuation operations.

    (4) Peacekeeping.

    (5) Rescue and recovery.

    (6) Support to civil authority.


A brigade normally has one MP platoon attached. Depending on the situation, more elements of the division MP company may be attached. Also, corps MP assets may be attached. The size and composition of the force depends on the following:

  • Mission and size of the contingency force.

  • Attitude of the local population.

  • Number and distribution of lines of communication.

  • Quality of MSRs, which may be channelized, extended, and have many control points.

  • Ease of access to critical supplies.

  • Number of critical facilities and supply points needing security.

  • Type of terrain.


Military working dogs can support all categories of LIC. The three different types of dogs are patrol dogs, patrol/narcotic detector dogs, and patrol/explosive detector dogs.

a. Patrol Dogs. Patrol dogs are the most versatile of the military police working dogs. Composed and controllable at all times, they can work near people safely, either on- or off-leash, without loss of effectiveness. Despite their well-socialized nature, they can detect and detain criminal offenders in both physical security and law enforcement situations. They attack on command from the handler and can be recalled from an attack. Patrol dogs are trained to detect and locate unauthorized persons in buildings as well as in open areas, and some can track criminals from crime scenes by following scent trails. All patrol dogs and handlers are certified at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. Handlers are trained in a 6-week course on the care of the patrol dogs.

    (1) Training.

      (a) Basic obedience--to sit, stay, heel, down, and so on.

      (b) Drill and ceremony--to perform close order drill with other dogs and handlers.

      (c) Scouting--to search a field or woods and alert the handler of the presence of an intruder.

      (d) Aggression and agitation--to respond to aggressive acts or threats to include responding to the handler's command to attack.

      (e) Building search--to search a building on- or off-leash to detect and attack once an intruder is located.

      (f) Tracking--to follow the scent of a human, at least one hour old, over any type of terrain.

      (g) Gunfire--to be adversely affected by gunfire from either the handler or another person.

      (h) Vehicle patrol--to ride quietly and calmly in a vehicle that the handler is driving and not show any aggressiveness toward passengers.

    (2) Utilization.

      (a) Patrol--walking or mobile, to respond to alarms, check high security areas, and so on.

      (b) Building search--to check for intruders faster and safer than by MPs.

      (c) Crowd control--to stay out of sight until needed, then can be used in direct confrontation.

      (d) Tracking/scouting--to search for lost, injured, or missing persons, prisoners, or fleeing criminal offenders.

      (e) Public affairs--to demonstrate abilities and increase public relations.

    (3) Types of alert.

      (a) Building search--trained to attack, growl, bark, and so on.

      (b) Scouting--trained to alert the handler of an intruder without alerting the intruder.

b. Patrol/Narcotic Detector Dogs. Patrol/narcotic detector dogs are highly specialized animals whose primary mission is to detect possession or transportation of marijuana, heroin, and related substances. The patrol/narcotic detector dog is also valuable in that it is trained first as a patrol dog, then as a narcotic detector dog, so it can do all that a patrol dog can do and more. All patrol/narcotic detector dogs and handlers are certified at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. Handlers are trained in a four-week course on search patterns, different drug odors and characteristics, dog alerts, and so on. Although the handler receives intensive training at the school, the dog and handler must continuously train together to maintain their proficiency.

    (1) Training. The patrol/narcotic detector dog is required to maintain proficiency in all patrol dog areas of training, in addition to detecting the following odors:

  • Marijuana

  • Cocaine.

  • Hashish.

    (2) Utilization. The patrol/narcotic dog is proficient in all patrol dog areas of utilization, and it can detect contraband material on narcotic dog missions.

    (3) Missions.

      (a) The narcotic mission is scheduled, then it is given to the patrol/narcotic detector dog handlers.

      (b) The narcotic detector dog team then goes to the unit for the mission and contacts the commander, who receives a briefing.

      (c) The narcotic search is then conducted.

      (d) When the dog alerts on a room, water fountain, and so on, the commander is notified, and either gives or denies permission to search the alerted area.

      (e) If permission is granted to search the alerted area, the search is then conducted by a person designated by the commander.

      (f) If permission is denied to search the area, the mission is over.

    (4) Types of alert.

      (a) Passive response--upon finding an item, trained to sit at the location and await the handler.

      (b) Aggressive response--upon finding an item, trained to scratch and bite at the location.

c. Patrol/Explosive Detector Dogs. Patrol/explosive detector dogs have a particularly acute sense of smell and are trained to discriminate the scent of different explosives. These dogs are specially selected patrol dogs that have received specialized training in this difficult and demanding field. All patrol/explosive detector dogs and handlers are certified as a team at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. The patrol/explosive detector dog and handler must be certified together by maintaining a proficiency of 95 percent or better.

    (1) Training. The patrol/explosive detector dog is required to maintain proficiency in all patrol dog areas of training in addition to detecting nine different types of explosives.

    (2) Utilization. The patrol/explosive detector dog is proficient in all areas of patrol dog utilization, and it can provide bomb threat response support to both the military police and civilian communities. The patrol/explosive detector dog can also provide VIP security, pay site security, money escorts, and so on.

    (3) Type of alert. For obvious reasons, the patrol/explosive detector dog is trained for a passive response.

Section VII.

PSYOP support is an integral part of LIC. It is tailored to meet certain needs for peacekeeping, FID, contingencies, or terrorism counteraction. Thus, leaders must consider military and nonmilitary courses of action in terms of their psychological impact. In correcting the main causes that lead to LIC, leaders may lose short-range tactical advantages to preserve long-range psychological objectives. Understanding and incorporating political, social, and economic policies and goals into military PSYOP planning are vital for success. Peacekeeping operations can be supported by PSYOP in four ways: information/education programs, peacekeeping training for other nations, aid as advisors to allied peacekeeping efforts, and aid as advisors to other US agencies. (See FMs 100-20 and 33-1.)


In FID, PSYOP support is integrated into all aspects of the foreign assistance programs. This includes internal development, humanitarian aid, and security assistance. PSYOP in FID are directed toward--

  • Assisting the host nation in gaining popular support.

  • Assisting the host nation in defeating the insurgents.

  • Establishing a favorable US image in the host nation.

  • Favorably influencing neutral groups and the world community.

  • Assisting the host nation in supporting defector rehabilitation programs.

  • Providing close and continuous PSYOP support to enhance the effects of CA operations.

a. A major security assistance role in the conduct of FID includes US military PSYOP training, advisory assistance, and logistic support. United States PSYOP assets work to help the host nation improve its PSYOP programs and abilities.

b. Army PSYOP elements may be tailored to support a certain contingency. In most contingency operations, PSYOP can help explain why the US took the action. They can amplify the effects by stating the reasons and results to friendly, neutral, and hostile audiences.

c. Terrorism has an immense psychological impact. Terrorism counteraction includes PSYOP directed at target audiences of the terrorists, the terrorists themselves, and terrorist supporters. PSYOP reinforce national will to deter and attack terrorism.


The PSYOP unit commander and the supported unit commander have different duties for PSYOP. The execution of these responsibilities, as outlined below, enhances the commander's mission accomplishment. (See FM 33-1.)

a. The PSYOP unit commander--

    (1) Determines PSYOP objectives based on the supported unit's mission.

    (2) Provides, when required, PSYOP assets to augment the G3/J3 section of the supported command.

    (3) Advises the supported command concerning PSYOP abilities and limitations.

    (4) Advises, assists, coordinates, and recommends plans concerning psychological aspects of proposed operations.

    (5) Recommends proper allocation of PSYOP assets within the supported command.

    (6) Conducts PSYOP in support of the supported unit's mission.

    (7) Provides feedback about the effect of ongoing PSYOP.

    (8) Maintains close, continuous coordination with other US agencies having PSYOP responsibility.

    (9) Analyzes the enemy psychological situation to identify weaknesses.

b. The supported unit commander--

    (1) Integrates PSYOP into the military decision-making process.

    (2) Assesses the psychological impact of the military presence, activities, and operations.

    (3) Provides intelligence support to PSYOP.

    (4) Ensures that the PSYOP staff element has access to other staff sections. This aids coordinating PSYOP activities and acquires needed information and intelligence.

    (5) Reviews OPLANs/OPORDs to ensure that they support national and military psychological objectives.

    (6) Provides guidance to subordinate commanders and staff officers concerning PSYOP objectives and plans.

    (7) Integrates PSYOP training with unit instruction and training programs.

    (8) Provides mess, administration, and logistic support (less PSYOP-peculiar equipment) to supporting PSYOP unit.

Section VIII.

CA operations are those activities of a command that obtain needed civilian cooperation and support for a military commander. They may also reduce civilian interference to attain his objective. CA operations affect the relationship between the military forces and civil authorities, and the people of a country or region. They involve the performance by military forces of some or all of the functions normally performed by civil government.(See FM 41-10.)


In LIC operations, CA operations support the commander and host nation civil administration.

a. CA support to the commander includes--

    (1) Identifying available local resources, facilities, and support.

    (2) Coordinating US requirements for and assisting in obtaining local resources, facilities, and support.

    (3) Minimizing civilian interference with US military operations.

    (4) Assisting the commander in meeting legal and moral obligations to the local populace. This is done by temporarily providing support of goods and services through the host government agencies to the local populace.

    (5) Supplementing the intelligence effort at the tactical level.

    (6) Acting as the staff focal point for cultural considerations that affect military operations.

b. CA support to the host nation civil administration includes--

    (1) Assisting a host government to meet its people's needs and to maintain a stable and viable civil administration. CA may also assist other US agencies that are providing aid to the host nation.

    (2) Establishing a temporary civil administration to maintain law and order, and to provide life sustaining services until the host nation can resume normal operations. This must be done at the request of the host nation.

    (3) Establishing a civil administration in occupied enemy territory. This remains effective until the local authorities can administer a system that supports US and allied objectives.


Command priority is given to those major CA activities that are most closely related to accomplishing the command mission. The CA staff element plans and supervises all CA activities of the command It provides for maximum command effort in support of this mission. In internal defense operations, priority is normally given to military civic action and to military participation in the populace and resources control program. As important as these two functions are, the commander cannot presume that they will meet his total CA responsibility.

Section IX.

Nonlethal NBC munitions prove effective where the guerrilla force has blended in with the local populace. The employment of firepower, such as artillery and air-delivered ordnance, must be avoided. This section focuses on employing smoke and nonlethal agents such as riot-control munitions. (See FMs 3-100, 3-4, 3-11, and 3-101.)


Smoke is a combat multiplier and can reduce the effect of weapons that depend on LOS. Riot-control agents are chemicals with military application. They are not classified as military chemicals and adhere to different policies than those that apply to chemical warfare. The use of smoke and riot control munitions must be carefully assessed for collateral effects, both physical and moral, then balanced against the advantages of their use. (See FM 100-20, Appendix B, for the specific limitations.)

a. Smoke can deny guerrilla forces direct visual observation of COIN troop and equipment assembly areas. It can also conceal weapons positions, CSS installations, river-crossing sites, objectives, and landings of air assault forces. (See FM 3-50.)

b. Riot-control agents and herbicides may be employed--

    (1) To disable for a short time a guerrilla force that has blended in with friendly civilians. No permanent effects occur to civilians.

    (2) By use of chemical antiplant agents to defoliate vegetation that restricts observation and fields of fire within or around US bases.

c. Flame field expedients are most effective in COIN operations. These weapons counter ambushes, defend fixed installations, and can be used as ambush weapons.

d. Riot-control agents provide rapid area coverage by heavy concentration. This reduces an unmasked guerrilla's ability to fight. Agents can subject him to capture or destruction.

e. Riot-control agents are used in offensive and defensive operations in which guerrillas lack proper eye and breathing protection. They supplement or complement firepower; for best results, they must be supported by fire and maneuver.

    (1) The agent supports operations in which the COIN forces want to deny an area for a short time by using nonlethal means. When COIN forces armed with the agent are stopped, they must adopt a temporary defensive posture. Munitions are emplaced to augment defense of the position or to assist in withdrawal when attacked by a superior guerrilla force. The agent increases the commander's ability and flexibility. It does so by applying effective combat power in situations where death and permanent injury are to be reduced. For example, in a consolidation operation, the agent can subdue guerrilla forces that have blended with the civilian populace.

    (2) In offensive action against an alert and fleeting guerrilla force, the counterguerrilla unit can place the agent on the target without being seen or open to small-arms fire. Thus, the agent is best used in the defense when the guerrilla moves within the range of emplaced weapons.

    (3) The employment of the agent is limited only by the current policy on employment, the availability of the agent, the means of delivery (either ground or air), and the imagination of the commander and his staff When air-ground communications are not adequate, air-dropped riot-control agents can be employed with less information than needed for other munitions. However, the best effect occurs under optimum air-ground coordinated action.


The divisional chemical company and corps chemical units are the only TOE chemical CS units. Since there are rarely enough chemical units and personnel to meet requirements in counterguerrilla situations, brigade personnel must manage smoke, flame, and nonlethal agents.

a. Ground Units. Any size ground tactical organization can employ riot-control agents. However, a platoon is considered the minimum-size force that can employ the agent effectively in counterguerrilla tactical operations. For example, a platoon designates one squad as the riot-control agent squad to cover targets. Larger units (company and battalion) may air-deliver the munitions against more extensive targets. The agent can be employed in any quantity to gain the desired effect on target.

b. Aviation Units. The agent may be delivered by rotary-wing or fixed-wing aircraft. The number of aircraft used depends on the size of the target and the amount of agent concentration desired.

c. Military Police. Host country (civilian or military) or US MP employ riot-control agents to control mobs or to reestablish control over rioting prisoners. Units may employ riot-control agents to assist in taking prisoners for interrogation or for obtaining documents. Agents are employed where immediate disabling of guerrilla personnel will prevent the destruction of documents.


Smoke generator units are best employed when guerrilla activities escalate to large-scale operations by companies, battalions, or larger units. In operations conducted against small bands of elusive guerrilla forces, there is limited opportunity to employ chemical smoke generator units.

a. Tactical Operations. Tactical operations involve the following factors.

    (1) Offense. Air and ground delivery of riot-control agents may be planned with preparatory fires on objectives. The agent may be delivered as the attacking troops cross the line of departure. Delivery of the agent in the target area should cease no earlier than five minutes before friendly forces arrive. Guerrilla forces in the objective area should be weakened to offer little resistance.

      (a) When riot-control agents are used to force guerrillas from caves and tunnels, positive pressure should be used in the form of an air pump.

      (b) In helicopter-assault operations, air-delivery of riot-control agents directed on known or suspected hostile positions near the landing area can precede armed escort helicopters. If intelligence does not produce known guerrilla positions, the munition may be held on call awaiting return fire by the guerrilla forces. FAC can direct the delivery of the munitions on positive sighting of guerrilla positions. Aircraft crews and assault troops prepare to wear protective masks during landing. Riot-control agents may also be employed in airborne and amphibious operations.

      (c) In counterguerrilla force ambush operations, the riot-control agent can produce confusion and weakening. This allows counterguerrilla ambush forces to move to the killing zone to take prisoners. In night ambushes, riot-control agents are best used along with trip flares.

      (d) When attacking hard targets, such as fortified positions, gun positions, and bunkers, the agent can make the positions untenable. It can also flush the occupants into the open to be captured or destroyed.

      (e) Other offensive operations in which the agent may be employed are river crossings, reconnaissance by fire, canalizing and blocking, harassing, attack on guerrilla forces in populated regions, raids, and antiaircraft fire suppression.

    (2) Defense. Air and ground-delivered riotcontrol agents can be used in hasty and deliberate position defenses. The agent should be emplaced far from the position in likely areas of guerrilla approach and rigged with trip wires to serve as a warning of and deterrent to guerrilla attack.

      (a) The agent can be integrated into perimeter defenses of various types of fixed installations (communications centers, airbase/airfield complexes, outposts, villages, and support facilities). When there is considerable friendly activity around these installations, strict command and control measures must be provided. This prevents accidental discharge of the agent by friendly personnel.

      (b) The agent can be used in counterambush situations if delivered quickly on the guerrilla ambush force.

    (3) Retrograde. The agent can be used to break contact when a counterguerrilla unit's position is untenable. Also, isolated units can employ the agent along with other fires. It acts as a means of route clearance and flank security in open areas on the route of withdrawal.

b. Populace and Resources Control Operations. The agent can be used when enforcement of populace control measures is needed.

c. Psychological Operations. The agent is an effective psychological weapon when used against personnel in countries where superstition and a fear of the unknown are common. The reason for its use in populated areas should be explained in PSYOP followup--for example, to protect the population from severe harm if conventional firepower were used.


With the proliferation of NBC weapons in the world, it is highly probable that commanders will have biological or chemical agents employed against their troops in a LIC environment. Therefore, they must assess the threat and be prepared to decontaminate their troops based on the political and METT-T factors. (See Appendix F or FM 3-5 for detailed information.)

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