The tactical planning process
focuses on accomplishing the mission within the commander's intent.
Chemical planners at all levels integrate their plans into other
battlefield operating systems to maximize force effectiveness.
This appendix discusses the chemical staff's actions in the planning
process. For more detailed information on the planning process,
see FM 101-5.
Tactical planning is a continuous
process. Commanders and staffs continuously assess new information
for its impact on current and future operations. While planning
is continuous and cannot be totally isolated from current actions,
it is a sequential process that begins with the receipt of the
higher headquarters' order.
Chemical officers at all levels
must understand the planning process and their role in it. Staffs
at all levels use the military decision making process (MDMP)
(Figure D-1) to prepare operational plans or orders. The MDMP
has ten major steps: receipt of the mission, information exchange,
mission analysis, staff estimates, commander's decision, preparation
of plans/orders, approval of plans/orders, issuance of plans/orders,
supervision, and mission execution.
Planning begins with receipt
of the order from the higher headquarters. The battle staff assembles
and gathers the critical information needed by the commander to
begin the planning process.
During this phase of the MDMP,
the commander and the staff exchange information concerning the
unit's current status. This information may include the NBC threat,
status of supporting chemical units, areas of contamination, contaminated
units, current decontamination operations, and the current MOPP
level. The information provided should require immediate attention
or have a lasting affect on the next mission, for example, the
next mission is a hasty attack (line of departure (LD) within
12 hours), the TF's only tank company is contaminated and the
supporting decon platoon has not yet linked up. This requires
immediate attention and will affect the development of the scheme
The chemical officer must
be ready to present this information to the commander--
- Current NBC threat (to include
probability of attack).
- Current MOPP level.
- Current status of supporting
- Current capability.
- Anticipated capability.
- Status of any contaminated
units or ongoing decontamination operations
During mission analysis, the
higher headquarter's order is analyzed to determine what must
be accomplished. The chemical officer is primarily concerned with
identifying all specified, implied, and essential/critical tasks
concerning NBC defense. Restraints and constraints are also identified.
The identification of implied tasks includes an analysis of the
enemy's NBC capability and employment doctrine. If the enemy uses
persistent agents to block avenues of approach or to shape the
battlefield, some implied tasks during an offensive mission might
- Identify contaminated areas
- Mark contaminated areas.
- Cross contaminated areas.
- Conduct operational decontamination.
- Coordinate for thorough decontamination.
- Evacuate contaminated casualties.
- Recover contaminated vehicles/equipment.
- Move contaminated vehicles/personnel
to a decon site.
- Establish appropriate MOPP
- Employ smoke.
- Assist in patient decon planning.
- Assist in mortuary affairs
When tasks are identified,
the cprocesshemical officer works with the G3/S3 to incorporate any essential/critical
tasks into the unit's restated mission, if necessary. The G2/S2
presents the initial threat analysis to the commander as part
of the mission analysis. A general NBC threat assessment should
have been developed between the G2/S2 and the chemical officer
prior to presentation of the initial threat analysis to the commander.
The commander will then issue his planning guidance, usually by
battlefield operating system and battlefield framework (deep,
close, and rear), and his intent for the operation. The planning
guidance may be general or specific in nature. The chemical officer
uses the restated mission as the basis for his estimate.
The staff estimate is a four
part process: situation analysis, course of action analysis, course
of action comparison, and the recommendation to the commander.
The level of detail is dependent on the amount of planning time
available. However, the steps that the chemical officer goes through
to develop his estimate are the same despite the time available.
Coordination with other staff sections (fire support, operations,
intelligence, air defense, engineers, and combat service support)
is critical. Written estimates are rare! y found below corps or
division level. However, the chemical staff officer should follow
the format at Figure D-2 to ensure all considerations are examined.
During situation analysis,
the chemical staff officer first examines those aspects of the
weather, terrain, enemy, and friendly forces that are significant
from the standpoint of NBC defense. The analysis is an interactive
process for the entire staff, so the chemical officer cannot wait
upon other members to complete their portions of the analysis
before beginning to develop his own. The situation analysis drives
the later development of the plan.
The area of operations is
examined to determine the effects of weather and terrain on chemical
and smoke employment. The chemical officer, with the G2/S2 determine
the enemy's capability to use NBC weapons, smoke and flame. The
chemical officer assesses what effect these could have on friendly
forces. The friendly situation is examined to determine what chemical
corps assets are available to support the mission and the NBC
defense training status. Possible courses of action for chemical
unit support are developed. Each course of action is analyzed
to determine its advantages and disadvantages in relation to the
situation and the possible NBC threat. They are compared and the
most advantageous one is recommended to the commander or G3/S3.
The chemical officer continues
his situation analysis by reviewing the friendly situation including
forces and resources available for the mission (including those
available at the higher headquarters). The chemical officer assesses
the availability of personnel and logistics to support chemical
operations, identifying any significant limitations. The chemical
officer works with the G1/Sl and G4/S4 when determining the personnel
and logistic requirements. The current status of contaminated
units, their current operations, and when decontamination will
be completed are also determined.
The chemical officer finishes
the estimate of the situation with an analysis of the availability
of chemical units to conduct decontamination, NBC reconnaissance,
and smoke operations. He uses the status of units, their current
operations, and completion times for ongoing activities.
The chemical officer provides
the G3/S3 the significant assumptions made that could have a major
impact upon the whole plan. This ensures that all staff members
base their estimates on the same parameters.
ANALYSIS OF COURSES OF
The G3/S3 has the lead in
analyzing each course of action and identifying the significant
factors used in the process. These are usually critical events
or actions, such as a passage of lines or the assault and seizure
of an objective. The chemical officer, with the rest of the battle
staff, assist the G3 /S3 to wargame each course of action against
the anticipated enemy action or reaction. The chemical officer
identifies advantages and disadvantages for each course of action
from the chemical viewpoint.
Shortfalls in chemical resources
become apparent during the wargaming process. The chemical officer
adjusts the plan to handle these. For every course of action,
the NBC defense and smoke plans must meet the commander's requirements.
When a critical maneuver event fails due to the lack of chemical
resources, the proposed course of action is not feasible.
COMPARISON OF COURSE OF
The chemical officer compares
each course of action and selects the best one from the chemical
perspective. That information is provided to the G3/S3 for incorporation
into the decision process.
The chemical officer makes
his recommendation to the commander during the decision brief.
The type and amount of information briefed depends upon the needs
and preferences of the individual commander. In general, the briefing
- Concept for chemical support.
- Chemical mission priorities.
- Critical NBC and smoke events/actions.
- Task organization and command/support
- NBC defense and smoke overlay
(including smoke, NBC reconnaissance, and decontamination employment
and concept of use).
- MOPP levels and where MOPP
gear will be stored/carried.
- Critical tasks for subordinate
- Vulnerability assessment (including
probable targets and agents).
- Levels of risk taken.
Other members of the battle
staff brief information provided to them by the chemical officer
during the interactive estimate process. This is particularly
true of the intelligence portion of the decision briefing and
the comparison of courses of action. This information can include,
but is not limited to, NBC threat considerations, commander's
PIR, or smoke in the deception plan.
OF THE BATTLEFIELD
The intelligence preparation
of the battlefield (IPB) normally takes place during the estimate
phase. The G2/S2 takes the lead in the IPB, but the entire staff
is involved. While the IPB is a five- part process (battlefield
area evaluation, terrain analysis, weather analysis, threat evaluation,
and threat integration), most of the analysis is conducted prior
to the mission or concurrently. The IPB drives the entire planning
process. The chemical staff officer provides information and technical
advice to the G2/S2 throughout the IPB process. Much of the analysis
of the friendly and enemy situation is accomplished within the
Weather and terrain information
is critical. The chemical officer evaluates the climatic data
and the weather forecast to identify factors critical to NBC weapons
and smoke employment. Terrain is analyzed for observation, cover
and concealment, obstacles, key terrain, and avenues of approach
(OCOKA). The impact of terrain on NBC weapons and smoke employment
is identified. Areas with deficiencies in natural cover and concealment
are identified for possible smoke operations. Water sources for
decontamination operations are identified.
During the threat evaluation
phase, the chemical officer provides the G2/S2 an analysis of
the enemy's capability to influence the battle using NBC weapons
and smoke. After the capabilities of the enemy are determined,
the chemical officer must predict how the enemy will likely employ
NBC weapons to influence his operation. At the brigade and task
force levels the G2/S2 normally develops a situational template
for each enemy course of action depicting how the enemy may be
arrayed. Once the G2/S2 produces the enemy situational template,
the chemical officer provides the G2/S2 an analysis of the enemy's
probable employment of NBC weapons and smoke. The chemical officer
identifies the probable location/targets for persistent chemical
agents and adds them to the template. Trigger points for the execution
of nonpersistent strikes are also determined and depicted on the
situational or event templates.
After the enemy's most likely
course of action is determined, the chemical officer works with
the G2/S2 to develop the intelligence collection plan (to confirm
the estimate of the enemy's NBC activities at key times and locations).
The chemical officer works with the G2/S2 and fire support coordinator
(FSCOORD) to identify areas of potential enemy vulnerability and
high-value targets (HVTs) for attack with nuclear weapons.
The commander decides on a
course of action and will provide detailed planning guidance to
the staff. Detailed warning orders are issued to subordinate chemical
units, allowing them to begin preliminary planning. At this point,
the chemical officer must have a clear picture of the NBC threat,
how chemical units will be employed, and the overall NBC defense
plan. If not, seek additional guidance.
Once the commander has issued
his guidance, the staff begins to prepare the plan. Staff coordination
is essential during this phase of the planning process. The chemical
officer must coordinate with the G3/S3, fire support officer,
and the subordinate chemical unit commander. The combat service
support (CSS) considerations of the NBC defense and smoke employment
plans are coordinated with the G4/S4. An example of an NBC defense
plan is located in FM 101-5. Once the plan is completed, the commander
will review & approve or disapprove it.
The chemical officer briefs
the NBC and smoke plans during the orders briefing. A simple briefing
format is used by each staff officer to rapidly provide all necessary
information. Subordinate or supporting chemical unit commanders
attend the orders briefing to understand the mission, the entire
plan, and how the chemical unit fits into the overall operation.
Planning is a continuous operation.
Plans and orders must be adapted or modified based on new information
received, rehearsals conducted, and guidance/missions received
from higher headquarters. The subordinate or supporting chemical
unit commander must provide his plan to the chemical staff officer
for review to ensure it meets the commander's intent.
Subordinate units must backbrief
their plans/orders to their higher headquarters. This allows the
higher commander to ensure that his subordinates have developed
their plans/orders in accordance with their concept for the operation.
There are two types of backbriefs--full and abbreviated. When
time is not critical, use the full backbrief format (Figure D-3)
and, if time is limited, use the abbreviated backbrief format
(Figure D-4). Chemical units will backbrief their higher or supported
units, and chemical staffs will backbrief their higher chemical
staffs. Conducting backbriefs promotes the synchronization and
integration of plan/orders.
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