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Positive Performance Decontaminate Personnel and Systems

* Decontamination operations: Decon platoons know how to conduct their part of deliberate decon. Planned positions for the decon platoon on the battlefield usually support the scheme of maneuver. Deliberate decontamination sites and link-up points are properly identified in the plan.

Needs Emphasis Breach Obstacles

* Fundamentals of breaching operations at task force level: Fundamentals of breaching operations are not understood or implemented at the Task Force level.


1. Task Force Combined Arms Teams members do not generally understand or apply breach tenants:

  • Intelligence
  • Synchronization
  • Mass
  • Organization (support, breach and assault forces)
  • Fundamentals (suppress, obscure, secure and reduce) or characteristics of the offense:
  • Surprise
  • Concentration
  • Speed
  • Flexibility
  • Audacity

2. Task Forces and Brigades often attempt to reduce without attaining appropriate level of supression and obscuration of the enemy.

RESULT: Securing of the obstacle breach site is not accomplished by either fire or force prior to the committal of the breach force with its local security element.

Techniques: Task force planners and leaders must understand and train IAW FM 90-13-1 and FM 100-5 in relation to offensive breaching operations.

1. Home Station training should begin with NCOPDs/OPDs to ensure all personnel involved have the same basic understanding of breach operations, definitions and doctrine.

2. Execution of breach training should begin with rockdrills/terrain boards and culminate with full-scale breach operations.

3. Planning must synchronize all elements (CBT, CS, CSS).

4. Use reverse breach planning during wargaming, from the objective back to the line of departure/TAA, to help identify the specified, implied and essential tasks of the breaching operation.

5. Template the enemy's defense and obstacles. Emplace Mines

* Interim Fire Support Automated System (IFSAS) computations for placement of minefield modules: Several units have planned and executed 200 x 800 FASCAM minefields using IFSAS computations that were in error.


1. The IFSAS computer selects incorrect aim points for a 200 x 200 FASCAM minefield module. (NOTE: The aim points for a 400 x 400 planning module are correct.)

2. The aim points may not be the same when re-computed with the same data.

3. Units trust the computer to provide the correct technical solution, and do not make manual calculations.

4. Manual gunnery is no longer trained in the schoolhouse because of computer automation.


1. A unit's ability to provide accurate fires is hampered due to software errors.
2. Manual gunnery will be lost as an alternative means to determine aim points.


1. Develop a work-around for the current software until it is corrected.
2. Units need to be aware of the IFSAS software problem and verify selected aimpoints with the M17 plotting board or chart.

6.2.3 Mark Obstacles

* Completion of Minefield Records, DA Form 1355:

PROBLEM: Minefield Records (DA Form 1355) are not:

  • Completed to standard
  • Completed in a timely manner
  • Forwarded to higher headquarters as required

Technique: Increase use of DA 1355s at Home Station Training, to include NCODP and OPD classes on contents, preparation and submittal requirements.

6.3 Enhance Survivability

* Electronic Warfare (EW) team survivability enhancements: Too many EW teams are not training or equipping themselves to survive in the battlefield.

RESULT: EW teams which possess the technical knowledge to accomplish the mission may not survive due to lack of survivabilty preparation.


1. Train battle drills as well as crew drills:

  • Single courses of action that require a minimum of command and signal to initiate
  • Can be initiated by any member of the team
  • Simple, executed swiftly, and well rehearsed

2. Expect enemy recon elements to use the same basic criteria to select a site as we do to select an EW site.

3. The team leader must place his observation point and crew serve weapons in the enemy's most likely avenue of approach to give the earliest possible warning.

4. Keep situationally aware and in the appropriate REDCON level.

5. On report of an enemy sighting, the team leader must ascertain as much information as possible about the enemy, decide quickly what course of action to take and report them to higher (SALUTE REPORT) as time permits.

* Fire Support: Battery defense: Artillery batteries continue to show demonstrated weaknesses in the area of defensive planning and execution.


1. Too often units fail to prepare to defend themselves even when adequate time is available.

2. Junior leaders and section chiefs lack basic defensive skills such as

  • Use of Killer Junior
  • Use of TRPs
  • Range card preparation
  • Construction of fighting positions
  • Placement of observation points


1. Commanders and leaders must take a renewed interest in battery defense.

2. Battalions should establish battery defensive lanes to assist and set the conditions for commanders to train their units to standard.

3. Consider consolidation of instruction at battalion level to identify the standards to key leaders in batteries.

4. Battalions should acquire and maintain a supply of Class IV to assist leaders in their instruction of fighting position construction techniques.

5. Use OPDs and NCOPDs to teach TTPs on battery defense.

* Tactical/survivability skills of signal soldiers: Signal soldiers within MSE battalions tend to exhibit weaknesses in basic battlefield survivability skills.


1. Emphasis tends to be oriented towards:

  • Successful installation, operation and maintenance of the area communications systems
  • Areas such as site defense, casualty evacuation.

2. Responses to threat such as air attacks and chemical strikes are unpracticed.

RESULT: Signal sites tend to be soft targets and defensive measures are easily defeated.


1. Leadership in the signal community must make a concerted effort to improve the individual and collective survivability skills of signal soldiers.

2. Responses to various threats should be drilled at every opportunity.

3. Whenever communications systems are installed, tactical/survivability training objectives should be identified and trained.

4. CPX type communications missions can incorporate realistic threat scenarios which will enhance survivability during real world deployments.

6.3.1 Provide Battlespace Hazard Protection

* Maneuver forces reaction to chemical agents: When units encounter persistent or non-persistent agents on the battlefield they do not have a plan to react.

PROBLEM: Maneuver units have stalled along their axis of advance for over 45 minutes while trying to confirm if the chemical agent is either persistent or non-persistent.


1. Loss of momentum.
2. Loss of entire company teams to enemy artillery and to chemical casualties.

Procedure: Units must develop and train for reaction to chemical agents on the battlefield.


1. For an offensive mission (tailored for specific units):

  • Prior to LD all drivers crossing LD are in MOPP Level III, everyone else in MOPP Level II
  • At the first sign of chemical agent the drivers pull down their hatches and everyone else goes to MOPP Level IV
  • The unit does not slow its momentum.

2. MP teams have been teamed with chemical recon vehicles to provide additional security during movement and to act as Traffic Control Points (TCPs) at persistent chemical sites.

  • The C2 is either the Brigade chemo, chem recon platoon leader, or in some cases the chemical company commander.
  • The plan is then rehearsed not only at the unit level but at brigade and task force rehearsals.

3. Once identification of chemicals is known on the battlefield, the brigade must quickly disseminate the information and ensure the information reaches the lowest level. Units must capitalize on digital information technology. Protect Individuals and Systems

* Forward Support Battalion reaction to minefields:


1. Forward Support Battalions are generally deficient in their ability to react to minefields.
2. Units do not quickly mark, guard and report minefields.

Technique: Home Station training should include more emphasis on reaction to minefields. Employ Protective Equipment

* Soldier performance of basic chemical tasks: Individual soldier skills in basic chemical tasks are weak.

PROBLEM: Soldiers too often improperly perform chemical tasks:

  • Improper execution of the M256
  • Unmasking procedures not conducted to standard
  • Improper MOPP gear exchange
  • No immediate Decontamination Operations and buddy aid

RESULT: Increases soldier contact with contamination and increases the number of casualties.


1. Train NBC as a condition versus and event.
2. Make and distribute laminated instructions down to squad level.

* Emplacement and use of M8A1 Chemical Alarms: Too many units do not deploy their M8A1s IAW their TACSOP or FM 3-4.


1. Units do not identifying threat level.
2. Units are afraid that the alarms may be damaged by vehicles.
3. Units do not have adequate supply of WD-1wire.
4. Units tend to have battery shortages.
5. Units often place M8A1 inside the unit's perimeter, and not IAW TM 3-6665-12-12.


1. Train soldiers to properly employ the M8A1 IAW TM 3-6665-12-12.
2. Refer to GTA 3-5-14.
3. Maintain proper stockage of deployable supplies (to include batteries) IAW higher guidance, and ensure that supplies are rotated.
4. Develop standard operating procedures for marking M8A1s to prevent lost of an alarm.
5. Justify additional WD-1 wire for M8A1s using the unit MTOE and TM 3-6665-12-12 as references.

TA.5 Intelligence BOS Narrative
TA.6 Mobility/Survivability BOS & Nuclear/Biological/Chemical (NBC) Narrative, Part 2

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One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger - by Matthew Yglesias