OVERRUN BY ENEMY PRISONERS OF WAR (EPW), DETAINEES, AND CAPTURED ENEMY DOCUMENTS (CED)
During CELTIC CROSS III, conducted by the 7th Infantry Division (L), EPW play was resourced. The Division found that the divisional central EPW collection point can expect to be overwhelmed with EPW, refugees, and displaced persons. This impacts significantly on an austere interrogation element that must process and work with this large body, not to mention the enormous volume of CED that they must also process.
As a point of interest and to further validate this discussion, the British had the mammoth task of dealing with 12,000 prisoners during the first few days of the Falkland crisis. Additionally, FC 34-116, Interrogation Operations, states that a flow of CED similar to that encountered in Grenada will supply enough requirements to keep a light division's interrogators busy around the clock.
The sparseness of the LID organic interrogation assets restricts its ability to fully exploit both EPW and CED. According to FC 34-116 (p 2-1), the screening of both personnel and documents greatly degrades the efficiency of the interrogator to question EPW effectively and to produce timely intelligence information. Likewise, he loses efficiency in categorizing captured enemy documents.
Compounding this problem is Low Intensity Conflict (LIC), a principle LID mission, which probably will produce a myriad of differing requirements for interrogation assets. If the LID were deployed with a corps, they could request assistance from corps interrogation assets; however, it's not something that they should routinely expect. Consequently, the LID should train for the worst case and plan on using organic interrogation assets.
According to Ft Huachuca, the problem in directing organic efforts to either EPW, detainees, or CED is addressed in FC 34-116 (para 3-8). However, the FC does not clearly leave the senior interrogator the option of not screening certain personnel or documents due to overwhelming numbers, nor does it outline a process that could be used by the senior interrogator to make a decision on how to establish a priority. In most cases, all EPW could not be screened, much less the detainees and documents.
FC 34-116, para 2-1a, states that the commander must use the results of IPB to project the feasibility of dual collection missions to the available interrogators. If assets do not permit a dual collection effort, then one requirement must be given priority. FC 34-116 suggests that because the information an individual retains in his short term memory decreases rather rapidly (he forgets most tactical information in about 48 hours), interrogation at the division EPW collection point will probably yield little information of use to the division. Certain types of documents are not affected by time; therefore, CED should be screened in the event that a dual mission cannot be accomplished. (Documents should be checked at all levels for overlay information using Soviet or western type graphics which might yield immediate tactical information.) Screening CED is addressed in FC 34-116, para 2-1.
Presently, FC 34-116, ch 3, para 3-8, states that a screener's/interrogator's opportunities to examine documents, question holding area personnel, and personally observe EPW/detainees depends on the tactical situation. FM 34-52, Intelligence Interrogation, is under development and will replace FM 30-15, Intelligence Interrogation, dated September 1978. FM 34-52 will attempt to better define the senior interrogator's decision-making process based on command emphasis and will assist the senior interrogator in determining whether CED or EPW/detainees or both will be screened. FM 34-52 is tentatively programmed for final draft in September 1986.
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