Intelligence Preparation of
the Battlefield is a systematic and continuous analysis of the
enemy, terrain, and weather for a given area and mission. FM 34-130,
Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield outlines the
process in detail. IPB is a continuous process which has five
phases-- battlefield area evaluation, terrain analysis, weather
analysis, threat evaluation, and threat integration.
Battlefield area evaluation
is the identification of the areas of operation and interest.
Here the chemical staff becomes familiar with the unit's area
of operation and the assigned mission.
During this phase, the terrain
is analyzed to determine its military significance. The S2 determines
how the terrain will affect friendly and enemy capabilities, vulnerabilities,
and courses of action. The chemical staff considers how the terrain
will affect NBC and smoke operations. The chemical staff must
not only analyze the terrain for its effects on smoke and agent
clouds, but for terrain masking during nuclear operations. They
should also look for trafficability for chemical units and the
location of water sources. Identification of critical terrain
features (for example, defiles/chokepoints, rivers, key terrain)
is important. The S2 will develop the combined obstacle
overlay and identify avenues of approach and mobility corridors.
Without understanding the terrain, the chemical staff cannot predict
the effects of chemical agents and smoke.
Weather analysis determines
its effects on military operations. The chemical staff must obtain
detailed weather information such as the temperature, humidity,
surface windspeed and direction, and precipitation. They then
can determine how the weather will affect the employment of both
friendly and enemy NBC and smoke agents. This determination is
much more than stating that the winds will favor the enemy's employment.
FM 3-6, Field Behavior of NBC Agents is an excellent source
on how weather affects the employment of smoke and chemical agents.
The effect of weather on NBC operations is categorized as unfavorable,
moderately favorable, and favorable. FM 3-6 contains two tables
that summarize the effects of both terrain and weather on the
employment of nonpersistent(vapor and aerosol)and persistent (liquid)chemical
agents. FM 34-81, Weather Support for Army Tactical
Operations outlines the sources for weather reports
and provides additional detail on how weather can affect chemical
and smoke operations.
In this phase of the IPB,
the type and composition of the enemy force in the area of operations
is determined. The chemical officer assesses what the enemy's
capabilities are to employ NBC weapons and smoke to include types
of delivery systems with their ranges. It is also important to
review the enemy's NBC and smoke employment doctrine and evaluate
it against their mission.
While each enemy force will
develop its own chemical employment doctrine, it is possible to
classify it into three groups--force-oriental, terrain-oriented,
or a combination of the two. The Iraqi military's use of chemical
weapons during the Iran-Iraq War was primarily force-oriented.
Other threat nations use chemical weapons in both a force and
terrain oriented manner. A terrain oriented enemy will attempt
to use chemical agents, particularly persistent agents, to restrict
terrain or shape the battlefield. Figure E-1 gives an example
of a terrain oriented chemical attack. The employment of chemical
agents by a force oriented enemy is the attempt to directly target
and hit troop concentrations. Both nonpersistent and persistent
chemical agents can be used in a force oriented attack.
Figure E-2 gives an example of an force oriented chemical attack.
A nuclear-capable enemy will
develop its own employment doctrine. This doctrine will be based
on many factors to include weapon type, yield, and delivery systems
available. How the enemy employs biological weapons is dependent
on similiar factors-- agent type and delivery systems.
The chemical staff also must
consider the enemy's ability to use and see through smoke. The
chemical staff must answer these questions:
- How does the enemy use smoke
- What type of smoke does he
- How will our smoke affect
The enemy's NBC protective
posture must be identified because it may provide indicators of
his intent. Troops observed wearing protective gear may indicate
an impending attack. During the Iran-Iraq War, the Iraqis never
issued friendly chemical strike warnings, but instead issued warnings
that the enemy was about to launch a chemical attack. Enemy soldiers
captured without NBC protective equipment could indicate a lower
probability of NBC attacks because of an inability to operate
in a NBC environment.
The chemical staff also must
review recent enemy chemical attacks to understand how he is actually
applying his doctrine. Iraqi chemical weapons employment doctrine
went through several modifications during the Iran-Iraq War.
During the threat integration
phase, the information developed previously is combined to identify
possible enemy courses of action. The product is the situation
template (SITEMP). The chemical staff includes where and when
the enemy will employ NBC weapons on the SITEMP.
For a terrain-oriented enemy,
templating of persistent chemical targets is relatively easy.
The chemical staff identifies locations on the SITEMP where the
enemy may use persistent chemical agents. When templating a force-oriented
enemy, the chemical staff must identify enemy trigger lines or
decision points that the enemy will use to employ his chemical
agents (Figure E-3). During this phase of the IPB, it is critical
that the chemical staff and the S2 work together.
Once the chemical staff has
completed the threat integration phase of the IPB, NBC tasks are
incorporated into the recon effort to confirm or deny the enemy
Templated persistent targets
are designated as Named Areas of Interest (NAI) which are areas
or points that will confirm or deny a particular enemy activity.
NAIs are shown on the collection plan (Figure E-4).
The collection plan assigns
responsibilities for collecting information, to include observing
the NAIs. The chemical staff provides the indicators for each
NAI. The presence of contamination is an absolute indicator, but
it may not be possible to physically reconnoiter the NAI. A unit
may be tasked to establish an observation point (OP) to overwatch
the NAI. An indicator that chemicals may have been employed is
the impacting of artillery within the NAI.
Upon completion of the collection
plan, the S2 and the S3 will develop the reconnaissance and surveillance
plan (R&S). The chemical staff must assist to develop the
collection plan regarding the NBC related NAIs. The R&S plan
is given to the units tasked to collect the information. NBC recon
tasks are included in the R&S plan. When supported by NBC
recon assets, integrate the NBC recon unit into the R&S plan.
An example of a collection plan, showing a NBC related PIR, is
at Figure E-4.
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