MI is not 'light tanks' because the IFV already fills an equivalent role. The only thing you gain or lose from the difference between the vehicles
is a few extra dead bodies when it's knocked out in trade for a little more armor or gas in a potentially (if rarely) lower hull profile.
No. CRV(T) and IFV do not fill equivalent roles. One is transport, the other, surprisingly for a reconnaisance vehicle, is recon. And the point is
that MI is most often supported by machine guns on APCs, not cannon on light tanks. That is changing as M113s and equivalent vintage APCs are retired
and replaced with vehicles mounting chainguns and cannon, but neither the Russians nor the Chinese can muster a completely cannon-armed MI force and
who else is likely to be the opponent in the scenario you are envisioning.
Which is of course why the Bradley was originally spec'd to a scouting mission?
Why it has hull so tall it can clear the same sight obstacles as the M901 does (another optics based 'scout' as much as ATGW platform in actual use
by he way). Itself is possessed of an ATGW option which outranges the pure-gun light tanks? While carrying additional fires in the form of
Javelin/Dragon teams and _cavalry scouts_ inside?
Which is why armored cavalry units use the M3 version as a 'scouting' vehicle to this day? Scouting and Light Tank are synonomous to the extent
that you have the on-vehicle flexibility to engage point-hard targets (bunkers and mobile armor) and the assets to go MOUT with forces that are
completely passive-invisible within structures.
IFV's can do both missions. Tankettes fail at each. The closest to a useful role that the light tank fulfills today is that of Stug/assault gun,
directly aiding troops in penetrating a defensive belt. Given the prevalence and simplicity of LAWs, and the ultimate restrictions on RHA equivalency
inherent to air transport, that mission can only be achieved through a system like a robotic Wiesel which is not only smaller (cheaper) than an IFV.
But can afford to be lost in the same numbers it is produced. Such a system is NOT represented by the Brit style of light tanks. Or their
Franco/German wheeled equivalents.
Speaking of which (the prevalence and superiority if tracked IFVs) the Soviets beat everybody to the game with their mid-60's debut of the BMP/BMD.
The West Germans were next with the Marder 1 which I believe came online in about 1969-70.
The Russian vehicles mounted 73mm guns and external Sagger from the start. The Marders initially only had 20mm but later added Milan and a remote
firing station 7.62.
In the Russian inventory in particular, the arrival of the BMP/BMD allowed in-place supplantation of PT-76 and ASU-85 series assault guns.
It doesn't get much more 'light tankish' than that.
The only reason the M113 was not itself upgraded as a direct IFV-is-APC-with-turret counter was because our defense establishment was at first busy
recovering from Vietnam and then all hot and bothered to truck out the largely inferior Bradley. And so did not give the Gavin the kinds of
strengthened hull and horsepower/transmission improvements needed to keep up with the M1 in a supposed Euro-mechanized environment where it (and
derivatives) had previosly accompanied the M60's 'just fine'.
I frankly don't know what the Chicoms are doing. That was never my area. This-
Would suggest that they are following the 'New Russian Model' of heavy autocannon and a utility munition tube on a BMP-like chassis.
OTOH, your knowledge of WARPAC tactics and organizational structures is lacking if you don't understand the basic realities as I outlined them in the
above LINK'd text.
Tracks in the A class, Wheeleds as auxilliaries and non firstline division placeholders. Always.
Not sure what Russian trains have to do with mudthumpers and why you would choose one for support. Also not sure why we're discussing weight
differences between MBTs. Obviously by "ours" you don't mean the Leapard 1 or the Italians' 40 tonne MBT, only 60 tonne-range Challengers and M1s.
(sorry, to be specific, Challenger 2 and M1A1).
Nothing under 60 tons has the armor to survive 120-125mm exchanges at any realistic line of sight fighting distance. This basically means every
Russian tank is going to either score a first shot, first time of flight kill and survive. Or score a mutual kill and die. Or just die. There being
no chance to 'slug it out', armor to armor. Which means that they need to have MORE such vehicles so that they can use pin and maneuver tactics to
absorb losses while either overrunning an Allied force. Or holding them in place to go around. Russian 'pincer' envelopements with elite tank
units being a specialty that they refined from the German blitzkrieg to include MASSIVELY separated (300-500km) operational axes completely beyond any
one frontal level commander's ability to mass forces to counter.
The only way you can bring such massive maneuver forces to battle in a timely fashion is by rail. The only way to do that is to keep them light,
narrow and cheap enough to exploit existing carriage limits on older Russian lines. But if you can keep yourself small enough to exploit rail _tanks
will be everywhere_ you need armor. Including as standard operational elements of Motor Rifle Divisions. Where they will do 'just fine' against
It should also be noted that the 'best tank' in terms of armor protection and firepower is probably the Leo-2A6, not the Abrahms, not the
Challenger. Leo-1 is a junk (German M60) tank maintained by 'peripheral' NATO nations and a few residual export clients like Oz. Too poor or
facing too few armor threats to do more than cosmetic upgrades. The AMX-30 and the Italian GIAT export vehicles are equally largely 1960's designs.
On a real battlefield, they would suffer roughly equal attrition with a late model T59 or T72, with outcomes largely based on sighting upgrades and
stabilization (where present) below 800m. Outside 1,200m, first round hits go markedly down on the Russian vehicles and lower pressure tubes require
a switch to guided rounds. Here, a decent 105 APFSDS will still win. But you'd damn well better be hulldown behind a berm if you want to be sure of
seeing your kids.
i.e. For us, a switch to MBT-lite (let alone junk like the XM8 Buford) tactics still doesn't do much because we /still/ cannot beat them,
logistically for rate of introduction and sustainability of forces to theater.
Because he is holding a hill as ordered?
We don't send troops to 'hold' objectives that have no tactical or strategic value. We send them to destroy or slow the fielded forces which might
want to take that hill for their own use. The difference being _TIME_ to determine where the engagement will be as well as how long you are stuck in
some kind of whacked disengagement and maneuver phase to break contact and get to the next ambush point.
If the enemy is 'already there', we blow them up in place (OIF) and /then/ occupy. Yet even then, only as needed. Better it is to invest them so
they cannot leave and then let them rot or encourage them to come to us so as to be out from under any fixed air defense umbrella and away from
Perfectly well trained soldiers throughout history have suffered mud-fever as a function of becoming mistakenly obsessed with hill-xxx 'label
values' so I don't particularly hold you to blame but ever since the invention of reverse slope attack by both mobile RT and airpower, there is no
point in trying to hold the higher ground. Even as a (manned) OP.
The last time we did anything remotely that stupid was at Khe Sahn and you need only ask the NVA who was the real sucker there.
_Never Bleed For Dirt_.
Certainly never bleed for dirt as a threat magnet without a helluva lot more support for your people than a parachutist can swing.
Because he jumped out of a plane as ordered and now occupies that hill?
When the 173rd Brigade 'jumped out of a plane' in Northern Iraq, it didn't do so ANYWHERE'S NEAR an enemy capable of knocking them out at the
airhead. Indeed the entire 'Northern Front' activities were completely political in nature and basically came down to-
1. Ensuring that the 82nd got to run the ball at least once and so would be guaranteed funding for another decade.
2. Keeping the wheedling little opportunist 'NATO Ally' Turks on their own damn side of the border.
3. Restraining the bloodyminded Khurds from thinking we 'didn't need them' in a fashion that insulted or incited their fragmented leadership into
starting their own little war as a function of settling scores around Kirkuk's oil fields.
4. Initimidating the Iraqi leadership into thinking that we /might/ come from their north, which in turn locked down substantial armor units, in city
until the 3rd ID could close up and make the alternatives untenable. (It may have also been intended to prevent any NCA flight towards a
border/redoubt/hideout but it obviously failed there as we failed to lock down transport throughout the country, as we should have.).
Even so, the real 'airborne' effort came ONLY as a function of securing a largely uncontested APOD (Bashur) and /pouring in/ some 800 vehicles in 5
nights of activity such as simply doesn't happen in a real war because there are no NFZs in which to declare a 'safe zone' of Fed Ex delivery. Nor
30 day prep phases to reduce the surrounding IADS. You can enter early or by force but you had better not plan on having that much rinse&repeat
freedom to build up a mechanized maneuver option in getting the heck away from the airhead.
One shot. Per staging area. That's it. If you think you are going to bring in heavy mech (in numbers or with fuel to be worth a damn) you're
nuts. Better by far to use _much smaller_ UAs and go completely light-force within a overwatch (E-8 or RQ-4) or partisan system of absolute AVOIDANCE
of direct contact with enemy forces. Vehicles make SOF viable main force killers. But only so long as the signature value of their presence doesn't
exceed the armor capability to sustain a LOS fight.
Because he's waiting for XXX corps to come down the road and relieve him, and would you look at that, Captain Grabner's about to come across a
bridge at him with an SS Panzer recon squadron!
While only a Brit would stop to make tea when he had airborne fighting armor 80 miles up the road, the fact remains that Monty's 'brilliant' idea
of a northern endrun to bypass the Siegfried and Rhine crossing problems was compromised from the beginning due to German control of the dykes in
Holland, deliberate misinformation about the 9th SS Panzer's presence, dispositions and strength and the general lack of forethought in sending
CS+Combat arms up a single axis of advance without more leveraging of fires (we would have needed to redirect most of the 8th AF fighter assets into
preemptive sterilization attacks to be sure of advancing that fast, IMO.).
NONE of which would have mattered if the Red Devils had had enough working radios or a leader with enough self-initiative to take his men OUT of
Arnhem when his supporting armor failed to arrive and they couldn't even /secure/ their objective bridge fully (north but not south as I recall makes
it impossible to keep sapping or direct fire from dropping the span).
In this case, /only a moron/ would 'assume' that things would work out all right when he didn't even have a working radio to find out what the
'latest delay of game' was.
Which is alright in the end because a dead or captured Brit commando means nothing to me and at that point in the war, little to the overall
prosecution effort. Yet you do conveniently make my point for me: Them's as commit to foolishness with forces not suited to the task, don't win by
sheer bravado. They just die in place.
**NEVER BLEED FOR DIRT!!**
Because he's sitting at the mouth of the Mitla Pass and the Egyptians have dug their T64s in and are waiting, maybe preparing to counter-attack?
As I recall, Mitla was where Sharon went gloryhounding in an _established_ retreat with an **inferior force** and found the fight he was looking
Bled his unit white for nothing he did.
In any case, this too was an attempt to 'sieze the high ground' as a _Purely Political Move_ designed to initiate hostilities in a way that secured
Israeli objectives in the south of the Sinai (lifting the blockade on Eilat) while giving the Brits and French an excuse to do the same with the
'globally important strategic navigation chokepoint that the Egyptians might blow up if they lost!' Suez.
The fact that Ike /could/ bring a screaming halt to that Imperialist Idea shows how 'necessary' it all was.
In this case, Mitla is a particularly bad example because the whole "Well, we're commited now, those paratroops won't last long if we don't get
them relieved!" part of the action had been successfully completed when the 202nd reengaged for no real cause. But at least they were mechanized so
they had a choice.
As for Somalia, stop telling us everything that was wrong with the mission and why it shouldn't have been that way. The fact is it happened. It's a
historical fact and whether you personally approve of the tactics or not doesn't matter. In said situation, what would your choice of CAS have
Sigh, bad moments need clarification and definition to GENERATE good tactics from. In this case, The Battle Of The Black Sea happened because the
dumbass Rangers let themselves be divided and nearly conquered on the assumption that going into the bad guys backyard with an inferior foot force was
never going to be challenged because the skinny's weren't in the same league of unit 'elan-as-egotrip' that we were self deluded with.
A little weed leveled that playing field right well and proper now didn't it?
In point of truth and _Crede Be Hanged_, they should have let those three crewmen on Super 64 die while they got their s*** in one sock on the main
mission or they should have had a full Mike Force, backed by quickly positioned light artillery (which also implies heavy lift as a more practical
means to get a lot of grunts on the ground, quickly), ready to go in and secure each crash site, separate from the main action.
They should not have separated one third of their vehicle escort force to save Tom Blackburn either.
I don't know where in the world our military has gotten the knuckleheaded notion as to think 'all for one and one for all' means that every man
risks everything for the weakest member. It simply means that every man's risk is shared, equally.
I would even say that the Ranger block-force mission was itself ill considered because they had no easy line of collapsible fires retreat to a shared
lane of egress or reinforcement (somplace they could drop at least //supplies// by helo without getting all shot up) if things went south. While a
single squad on the roof of the hotel could have controlled all access to the 10ft tall walled courtyard's _sole entry point_ and everybody could
have come and gone the same way Delta did.
Off the roof in quick little MH-6's and perhaps a SINGLE MH-60 flight for the prisoners.
Overcommitment of a highly vulnerable force that has no hope in hell of defeating a much larger one. A continuing theme I hold in utter contempt.
Because the military value of the mission was compromised by needless 'group heroics' (lemmings over the cliff) by General Garrison and because
indeed, General Garrison 'refused to refuse' a mission scenario where he was denied necessary basic support; BOTH the tactical -and- the political
theater objectives failed to be met.
Had /only/ four men died on October 3rd 1993, we might have won thru anyway in the effort to bring Somalia out of the Shadowed Valley that was killing
a 1,000 people a day at one point.
As things instead played out, _EIGHTEEN_ men died and 80 were wounded, some crippled for life.
As a soldier what sucks worse than bleeding for dirt and he will tell you it's bleeding for a victory that is taken from you, not by your inability
to keep fighting. But because your own leadership's incompetence pull you into a needless contest you should never have been there to be forced into
By failing to provide _COE_ (contempt of engagement) doctrine as a baseline to fewest risked, best standoff support, incentive force structuring, The
Mog does indeed have value as a 'what not to do' emphasis for why my system is better.
Try answering the questions, instead of disproving the tactical doctrine. Justify your choice through tactical doctrine (you will anyway), but don't
try and render the question invalid. You can put all your caveats at the end.
If (A-45CN styled) UCAVs are present for The Mog, they will have the ability to release 250lb GBU-39 small diameter bombs onto any point target with
less than 1ft CEP from 10-12,000ft and 300-400 knots. Too high and too fast for any 'RPG' threat to come close to bagging one (and who cares if
Each jet will have eight such weapons which further means that, even if they are sortieing from Egypt or Israel, to avoid the danger of mortar attack
on local airfields or for purposes of political inconspicuity; they can both stay on station (2hrs at 1,100nm radii) for quite a while and have
sufficient combat persistence to make a useful contribution to the insert team's defense. A single aerial refueling taking this up to 10-15hrs.
More than any manned platform, including the AC-130 will likely manage.
Some options that come to mind include the ability to shred any mobbed Somalia crowd with such instantaneous shock value (100 screaming morons 1
second. 100 dead bodies the next) as to 'hard psyop' intimidate them completely and prevent them from attacking en-masse. Something which
ultimately cost 'more innocents' than my approach.
This alone will allow elite infantry to do better on a round:round exchange basis of _aimed_ pointfires. Meaning you can commit fewer of them. Or
deploy them differently.
Another obvious mini-PGM 'solution' is in the reduction of any and all roadblocks. Though frankly the ones depicted in the movie were pathetic
(well within the ability of a 2.5 ton truck to shift out of the way at low gear), there is no reason not to use the UCAVs high gain optics to snapshot
map out transmit via Gold Strike imagery datalink and composite together on a ground station some kind of a route through ALL streets, blowing each
roadblock as the convoy approached.
Did the 13th Hussars stop in the middle of the goddamn road at Balaclava? No. They galloped the gauntlet with surprisingly few casualties until they
reached their objectives and tried to /come back/.
Where a sniping threat is present, a Shadow/Outrider or even Predator can be used, lower and slower (but still not below 170knots and 5,000ft) with
Viper sniper finding gear and Viper Strike laser guided BATs. Even though these weapons have only a 20lb warhead more suited for rooftop cleaning,
they are quite capable of penetrating a floor or two and thus defeating an embrasured shooter nest. They may also be useful in engaging technicals
and small bands trying to flank (moving targets, shorter TOF, less blast effect on narrow streets).
Clearly such a 'CAS by remote control' option doesn't excuse the theater commander from DEMANDING 'real gunships' (powered optics and turreted
heavy gun attack helicopters, able to fire down from 1,500ft or more, while carrying as many as 76 70mm FFAR, all vastly more efficacious than an
armed LOACH which is all that SOAR was 'pretending' with).
Nor does it mean you can get away without at least a heavy mortar squad and a busload of smoke and incapacitants (if frag is forbidden). 105s Light
Guns are even better.
Even as it requires the availability of LAW and satchel charges to, if need be, get INTO houses and blow holes /thru/ walls to get to or from a battle
without being pinned by secondary threats. It being SOP for FIBUA (since Stalingrad at least) to transit the urban fight behind walls or behind
armor. Never on a Hogan's Alley basis of moronic run and gun.
NONE OF THE ABOVE applies to the scenario supplied by Fritz.
Because his casepoint is that of infantry engaging a mobile mech force coming to them with tanks and IFV at a fixed combat position. Which is the
same thing as saying they have already lost the initiative or indeed, any real hope of defeating the threat unit as a whole.
And so their speedbump action had better damn well be critical for the blood about to be spilled.
Given mechanized units are probably the hardest of conventional point-hard, dispersed, organically air defended, 30-40mph fast march target sets to
kill. It really doesn't make sense to make the defense of a single unit '10 minutes later as the CAS crow flies' the SOLE opportunity by which you
hope to kill them as they further widen combat spacings, deploy ground troops with missile systems not available during march and the literal and FOW
'haze' of battle denies what little options you have for a frictionless engagement.
If for no other reason than that the Russkies /love/ mortars and it would not be at all unreasonable for them to combine a section or even platoon of
them some 3-5km back from the main force as a substitute or companion to main tube fires from the AFV and probably SPH under divisional control. The
infantry unit which tries to 'hold' anything will likely not even be able to serve as ETACs to the very air sent to save them. As the Russian
method of assault takes their position behind a rolling arty screen which overruns in almost a single bound.
If you want a better way to do it, read Colonel Bucky Burruss' _Clash Of Steel_. Though some of the concepts are now dated (anybody with two
synaptic gaps to rub together knows how worthless helicopters are at open field interdiction under a hostile air supremacy operating condition and
with minimal logistic support), the overall presentation is accurate for what it says about the ground team segment of the fight which basically comes
down to using a high powered drill to rapid-emplace an Unattended Ground Sensor on a directional microwave or landline relay out to a remote team
position (or even to a satellite and out of theater completely).
Before getting on your ATV and _riding the hell away_.
Nothing which adds to a remote apertures signature value (multipe 6ft tall humans and their 500lb hot motorbikes) is useful to said senor's mission.
And nobody will cry if it dies.
Even as certainly there is NO REASON to stick around for Mk.1 Eyeball sighting from 'high ground' when Russian airmobile sweep teams put VDV
vertical envelopement on every likely ambush position minutes if not hours before the armor passes through (i.e. if you are sitting on flat dirt with
5km optics, you are 'less likely to be seen', provided it's a periscope and not a puptent worth of far-hazey signature).
Again, GET IN. GET OUT. Displace and fade laterally out and away from the enemy line of march so that there is NEVER any contact.
The idea being that you use the leave behind sensors to make THE BAD GUYS bleed. The time needed to regroup from random seeming attacks cued onto
them _from the rear_ using UGS masted optics or (REMBASS) seismic nets that enable the accurate generation of passage-rate, geopoint or offset
prelased DMPI coordinates.
The latter method is especially is effective as GPS presurvey tells you where sensor post A is. While prelasing a couple landmarks along the line of
advance gives you distance to A to B plus C and D. And the optics themselves, knowing the trig of each leg of the triangle, can use angular
measurement to get a rate of travel index which sets the impact or airburst fuzing lane for munitions like JDAM/JSOW/WCMD. i.e. Once you know some
basic survey distances, you need never make another active (linear across) battlefield emission which might cue laser warners on the armor. But can
engage completely passively while compensating for time of flight over some pretty wide engagement lanes.
In the army way of looking at things, such microteam actions kicking the crap out of at least the enemy van units then buys you a delivery and staging
interval for a maneuver force to get into the field and deliver decisive direct fires as the depleted enemy makes their final phaseline push.
In reality, especially with modern standoff multikill weapons like JSOW-SFW and the VLO to deliver them from long standoffs (glide requires altitude
which means radar exposure), air dominance fades as a viable option to secure local airspace over a road marching threat and a UCAV will most likely
deal with an MRD sized unit as represented in _COS_ in as few as 1-2 attacks with Skeet based munitions.
Indeed, this has already been proven as the Marines showed on their march up to Baghdad, there being no reason for USMC LAVs to trial the theory of
25mm DU vs. 100mm Dolly armored T-55. Let alone home team, 'Real Russian,' equivalents. Not when they can simply act as the tripwire screening
force to bring in air delivered multikills.
A _modern_ tripwire unit's key ability lying not in the process of 'running over' a preset enemy ambush. But in keeping the battlefield so
cav-force fluid and well swept that the only way for an enemy to get at the main force train (itself operating at speed behind them) is to bring it
in. Thus you ensure that every contact is a meeting engagement between units in road march and _airpower_.