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Fm 3-20.97 the-recce_and_brt_troop_draft
Fm 3-20.97 the-recce_and_brt_troop_draft
Fm 3-20.97 the-recce_and_brt_troop_draft
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Fm 3-20.97 the-recce_and_brt_troop_draft

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Tactical

Tactical

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  • 1. 2D Coordinating Draft FM 3-20.9711 Field Manual HEADQUARTERS2 No 3-20.971 US ARMY ARMOR CENTER3 Fort Knox, KY 1 May 20014 5 6 RECONNAISSANCE TROOP7 Recce Troop and Brigade Reconnaissance Troop8 9 10 TABLE OF CONTENTS11 12 Page13 14 Preface ......................................................................................................... iii15 Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION.................................................................... 1-116 Operational Environment........................................................ 1-317 Organizations ....................................................................... 1-1418 Missions, Capabilities, and Limitations ................................... 1-2419 Responsibilities .................................................................... 1-2520 Chapter 2 BATTLE COMMAND............................................................. 2-121 Command and Control........................................................... 2-322 Command, Control, Communications, Computers,23 and Intelligence Architectures ............................................. 2-4624 Techniques of Tactical Control................................................ 2-5725 Command Guidance and Organizational Control ...................... 2-5726 Tactical Movement ................................................................ 2-6927 Chapter 3 RECONNAISSANCE/SURVEILLANCE ................................... 3-128 Fundamentals....................................................................... 3-229 Reconnaissance Planning...................................................... 3-1330 Area Reconnaissance ........................................................... 3-3831 Route Reconnaissance.......................................................... 3-5332 Zone Reconnaissance........................................................... 3-5933 Surveillance Fundamentals, Capabilities,34 and Limitations .................................................................. 3-7035 Surveillance Planning, Methods, and36 Considerations................................................................... 3-7237 Chapter 4 SECURITY ........................................................................... 4-138 Fundamentals and Capabilities............................................... 4-239 Screen................................................................................. 4-840 Area and High-Value Asset Security....................................... 4-3541 Convoy Security.................................................................... 4-4042 43 DISTRIBUTION RESTRICTION: Distribution authorized to U.S. Government agencies and44 their contractors only to protect technical or operational information that is for official45 government use. This determination was made on 12 March 2001. Other requests for this46 document will be referred to Commander, US Army Armor Center, ATTN: ATZK-TDD-C,47 Fort Knox, Kentucky 40121-5000.48 49 DESTRUCTION NOTICE: Destroy by any method that will protect disclosure of contents or50 reconstruction of the document.51
  • 2. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) ii Chapter 5 OTHER TACTICAL OPERATIONS ....................................... 5-11 Direct Fire Planning............................................................ 5-12 Offense............................................................................. 5-123 Defend as an Economy of Force.......................................... 5-214 Tactical Road Marches....................................................... 5-455 Assembly Areas ................................................................ 5-496 Reconnaissance Handover.................................................. 5-537 Linkup Operations.............................................................. 5-568 Battle Handover and Passage of Lines ................................. 5-639 Covert Breach Operations ................................................... 5-7010 Target Acquisition .............................................................. 5-7111 NBC Defensive Operations.................................................. 5-7612 13 Chapter 6 COMBAT SUPPORT.......................................................... 6-114 Intelligence........................................................................ 6-115 Fire Support/Target Acquisition ........................................... 6-1616 Army Aviation .................................................................... 6-3617 Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Platoon ........................... 6-6318 Multi-Sensor Platoon.......................................................... 6-6719 IBCT Infantry Rifle Company................................................ 6-7320 Mobile Gun System Platoon ............................................... 6-8321 Infantry Battalion Reconnaissance Platoon........................... 6-8622 Antitank Platoon/Company ................................................. 6-8823 NBC Reconnaissance ........................................................ 6-9224 IBCT Engineer Company..................................................... 6-9325 Air Defense ....................................................................... 6-9826 27 Chapter 7 URBAN OPERATIONS....................................................... 7-128 Understanding the Urban Environment.................................. 7-229 Planning............................................................................ 7-830 Execution.......................................................................... 7-1931 32 Chapter 8 COMBAT SERVICE SUPPORT........................................... 8-133 Fundamentals.................................................................... 8-134 Organization...................................................................... 8-635 Logistics ........................................................................... 8-1536 Personnel Service Support.................................................. 8-2837 Enemy Prisoners of War..................................................... 8-3238 39 Appendix A OPORD GUIDE ............................................................... A-140 Appendix B NUCLEAR, BIOLOGICAL, AND CHEMICAL41 OPERATIONS .............................................................. B-142 Appendix C FORCE PROTECTION ..................................................... C-143 Appendix D RECONNAISSANCE AND SURVEILLANCE44 PLAN........................................................................... D-145 Appendix E STABILITY OPERATIONS AND46 SUPPORT OPERATIONS.............................................. E-147 Appendix F AIRLIFT OPERATIONS..................................................... F-148 Appendix G COMMAND POST OPERATIONS ..................................... G-149 Glossary............................................................................................ Glossary-150 51 52
  • 3. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) iii PREFACE1 2 3 FM 3-20.971 describes the tactical employment and operations of4 reconnaissance troops of armored and mechanized infantry brigades (BRTs)5 and the recce troops of the Reconnaissance Surveillance and Target6 Acquisition (RSTA) squadrons. It specifically addresses operations for7 brigades organized under the Army of Excellence, the Limited Conversion8 Division force designs, and the Interim Brigade Combat Team (IBCT). FM 3-9 20.971 is the doctrinal foundation that governs the development of equipment,10 training, and structure for both types of reconnaissance troops.11 12 Because not all units are digitally equipped, this manual addresses analog13 and digital operations, technology applications, and equipment. Tactical14 fundamentals do not change with the fielding of new equipment; however, the15 integration of new equipment and organizations may require changes in16 related techniques and procedures. This manual provides guidance in the17 form of combat-tested concepts and ideas modified to exploit emerging Army18 and Joint capabilities.19 20 FM 3-20.971 is written for the recon troop commander and his key leaders21 within the troop. The manual reflects and supports the Army operations22 doctrine as stated in FM 3-0. Readers should be familiar with FM 3-91.3 [FM23 71-3], FM 3-20-97 [FM 17-97], FM 3-100.40 [FM 100-40], FM 3-71 [FM 71-24 100], FM 3-55 [FM 100-55], FM 102 [FM 101-5-1], and FM 3-20.98 [FM 17-25 98]. Examples and graphics are provided to illustrate principles and concepts,26 not to serve as prescriptive responses to tactical situations. This publication27 provides units with the doctrinal foundation to train leaders, guide tactical28 planning, and develop standing operating procedures (SOP). The publication29 applies to all reconnaissance troops in the active component (AC) and reserve30 component (NG/RC) force.31 32 Unless otherwise stated, masculine nouns and pronouns do not refer33 exclusively to men.34 35 US Army Armor Center is the proponent for this publication. Submit36 comments and recommended changes and the rational for those changes on37 DA Form 2028 (Recommended Changes to Publications and Blank Forms) to:38 Commander, US Army Armor Center, ATTN: ATZK-TDD-C, Fort Knox, KY39 40121-5000, or e-mail the DA Form 2028 to Chief, Cavalry Branch, from the40 Doctrine Division web site at41 http://147.238.100.101/center/dtdd/doctrine/armordoc.htm. (After accessing42 the web site, select “Organization” from the menu on the left side of the43 screen to reach the Cavalry Branch site.)44 45
  • 4. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-1 CHAPTER 11 2 INTRODUCTION3 4 5 The significance of reconnaissance cannot be overstated. History and6 training show that the winner of the reconnaissance fight will usually be the7 winner of the subsequent battle. The maneuver commander requires accurate,8 complete, and timely reconnaissance for success. The degree to which he9 correctly understands the threat situation, his own force’s situation, and the10 terrain heavily influences his battlefield success. This issue has been11 characterized as see the terrain, see the threat, and see yourself. Emerging12 command and control systems do a great deal to help a commander know his13 own forces situation, but the burden of obtaining real time information about14 the threat and terrain falls on his tactical reconnaissance units.15 The need for reconnaissance in Army operations remains unchanged.16 The fundamentals of reconnaissance and security are unaltered; however, the17 organization, equipment and techniques of the troop are now based on the unit18 it supports. While the troop’s primary missions are reconnaissance and19 security, the reconnaissance troop may be called upon to execute a myriad of20 additional missions. These missions range from route and area security to21 convoy escort and checkpoint duties. A reconnaissance troop’s operational22 environment spans the full spectrum of operations—from smaller-scale23 contingency to major theater of war operations. Regardless of the24 environment or mission, the troop’s primary function is always the same: Be25 the eyes and ear of the maneuver commander and provide the necessary26 information to allow him to make timely and accurate decisions.27 CONTENTS28 Page29 SECTION I. Operational Environment.........................................1-330 SECTION II. Organizations...........................................................1-1431 SECTION III. Missions, Capabilities, and Limitations....................1-2432 SECTION IV. Responsibilities........................................................1-2533 34 35 Based on its commander’s intent and guidance, the troop conducts36 reconnaissance in support of other friendly forces to provide current, accurate37 information about the threat, terrain, weather, society, physical resources, and38 the infrastructure within a specified area of operations. This provides the39 follow-on forces with an opportunity to maneuver freely and rapidly to their40 objective. Reconnaissance troops perform three types of reconnaissance:41 route, zone, and area.42
  • 5. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-2 Additionally, higher headquarters and the troop endeavor to link the1 purpose of reconnaissance to—2 • Answer commander’s critical information requirements (CCIR),3 and/or4 • Answer voids in the unit’s IPB through intelligence requirements (IR),5 and/or6 • Support targeting through target acquisition.7 8 As a part of the Army’s transformation process, the brigade9 reconnaissance troop (BRT) and the recce troop of the reconnaissance,10 surveillance, and target acquisition (RSTA) squadron have filled the historic11 gap in reconnaissance. Both organizations are designed to provide their12 respective commanders an increased number of tools for executing13 intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) operations. Tactical14 unmanned aerial vehicles (TUAV), artillery radars and observers, air defense15 radars, and satellite tracking systems all contribute to the effort. However, the16 brigade’s primary source of intelligence remains its organic reconnaissance17 units. Successful reconnaissance operations permit the brigade commander18 freedom of maneuver in order to concentrate combat power and apply assets19 deliberately at the decisive time and place of his choosing. Only through20 reconnaissance can he determine which routes are suitable for maneuver,21 where the threat is strong and weak, and where gaps exist.22 The purpose of this chapter is—23 • To depict the operational environment of the troop and its supported24 brigade.25 • To depict organizations of the reconnaissance troop.26 – Recce Troop: The Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target27 Acquisition (RSTA) Squadron (IAV and TUAV equipped).28 – Brigade Reconnaissance Troop (BRT): The Limited Conversion29 Division (LCD) XXI Brigade (HMMWV equipped).30 • To outline missions each troop performs.31 • To establish responsibilities of key personnel in combat.32 33
  • 6. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-3 SECTION l. OPERATIONAL ENVIRONMENT1 2 DIMENSIONS3 Reconnaissance troops support brigade operations by conducting4 reconnaissance and security missions in5 an operational environment consisting of6 six dimensions. Each dimension affects7 how the brigade combines, sequences,8 and conducts military operations.9 Commanders tailor forces, employ10 diverse capabilities, and support11 different missions to succeed in this12 environment.13 14 Threat Dimension. Multiple threats to US interests exist. Adversaries15 will continue to seek every opportunity to gain an advantage over US and16 multinational forces. When countered, they will adapt to the changing17 conditions and pursue all available options to avoid destruction or defeat.18 This environment and its wide array of threats present significant challenges.19 Army forces must simultaneously defeat an adversary while protecting20 noncombatants and the infrastructure on which they depend.21 Political Dimension. Successful military operations in any form require22 that commanders have a clear sense of strategic policy goals and objectives.23 They must understand how the use of military force fits into the national24 security strategy and the desired military conditions required to meet policy25 objectives. In addition, commanders must be able to articulate this26 understanding in a clear, concise way to the US and international media. Each27 political decision during the conduct of operations has strategic, operational,28 and tactical implications. Likewise, each strategic, operational, and tactical29 action directly or indirectly impacts the political dimension.30 Unified Action Dimension. Combatant commanders synchronize air,31 land, sea, space, and special operations forces to accomplish missions.32 Brigades can expect to operate in a unified command structure both in a major33 theater of war (MTW) and more commonly in smaller-scale contingencies34 (SSC). The brigade may work with multinational and interagency partners in35 order to accomplish the full spectrum of missions assigned to them. Brigades36 committed to SSCs can expect to protect American lives and interests, support37 political initiatives, facilitate diplomacy, promote fundamental ideals, and38 disrupt illegal activities. Close coordination is the foundation of successful39 unified action.40 Land Combat Operations Dimension. Land combat continues to be the41 salient feature of combat and is the brigades’ primary function. Land combat42 Dimensions of the Operational Environment • Threat • Political • Unified Action • Land Combat Operations • Information • Technology
  • 7. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-4 usually involves destroying or defeating threat forces or taking land objectives1 that reduce the threat’s will to fight. Four characteristics distinguish land2 combat:3 • Scope. Land combat involves direct and indirect combat with a threat4 throughout the depth of an operational area. Commanders maneuver5 forces to seize and retain key and decisive terrain. They use maneuver,6 fires, and other elements of combat power to defeat or destroy threat7 forces.8 • Duration. Land combat is repetitive and continuous. This involves9 rendering a threat incapable or unwilling to conduct further action. It10 may require destroying it.11 • Terrain. Land combat takes place among a complex variety of natural12 and manmade features. Plans for land combat must account for the13 visibility and clutter provided by the terrain and the effects of weather14 and climate.15 • Permanence. Land combat frequently requires seizing or securing16 terrain. With control of terrain comes control of populations and17 productive capacity. Thus, land combat makes the temporary effects18 of other operations permanent.19 Information Dimension. Decisive operations historically have been20 enabled by information superiority. Information superiority provides21 commanders with accurate, timely information that enables them to make22 superior decisions and act faster than their adversaries. Information23 superiority, derived from ISR; information management; and information24 operations (IO), provide one common framework on how to plan, task, and25 control assets; how and where to report information; and how to use26 information. The information environment also includes information derived27 from nongovernmental individuals and organizations, such as the media, who28 produce and disseminate information that affects public opinion, which can29 alter the conduct of and perceived legitimacy of military operations.30 Technology Dimension. Technology enhances leader, unit, and soldier31 performance and impacts how Army forces plan, prepare, and execute full32 spectrum operations in peace, conflict, and war. Technology has significantly33 increased the ability to conduct ISR operations. It greatly enhances the ability34 to conduct battle command through modern telecommunications and micro35 processing. Munitions are increasingly lethal and target acquisition systems36 are more precise. The proliferation of advanced technology systems requires37 commanders to integrate the capabilities of highly modernized organizations38 and less-modernized and multinational units. Commanders must also realize39 that they do not have a monopoly on advanced technology. Even adversaries40 lacking any research and development program can purchase sophisticated41 systems in the global marketplace, and gain selected parity or superiority to42 US systems.43
  • 8. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-5 Offensive operations aim at destroying or defeating a threat. Their purpose is to impose the will of the US on the threat for decisive victory. Defensive operations defeat a threat attack, buy time, economize forces, or develop conditions favorable for offensive operations. Defensive operations alone normally cannot achieve a decision. Their purpose is to create conditions for a counteroffensive that regains the initiative. FULL SPECTRUM OPERATIONS1 Full spectrum operations include offensive, defensive, stability operations,2 and support operations. Offensive and defensive missions normally dominate3 MTWs and some SSCs. Stability and support missions are conducted in SSC4 operations and to a lesser extent in MTW. Missions in any environment5 require brigades to conduct or be prepared to conduct any combination of6 these primary operations. Reconnaissance troops assigned to brigades are7 trained and equipped to support these operations. While the Army’s heavy8 brigades are optimized for operations in an MTW, they retain the ability to9 conduct SSC operations. The interim brigade combat team (IBCT) is10 organized and equipped to rapidly deploy to SSC operations, but is capable of11 conducting MTW operations if reinforced.12 Characteristics of Major Theater of War13 Major theaters of war have the greatest potential of occurring in regions14 containing moderate to well-developed infrastructure (especially roads, rail,15 and bridges), complex and urban terrain with large urban areas, and diverse16 weather patterns. Humanitarian issues, such as overpopulation; resource17 shortages; natural disasters; and inadequate local, regional, and global18 response capabilities, complicate these operations in much the same way as19 they do in smaller-scale contingencies.20 Brigades will usually conduct only one21 type of operation at a time, and then transition22 to another type as the strategic and operational23 requirements change. The recce troop and the24 BRT conduct reconnaissance and security25 operations in support of their assigned26 brigade’s offensive or defensive operations. The type of mission will depend27 on the commander’s requirements. For example, the troop will be assigned a28 reconnaissance mission if the brigade needs information on the terrain and29 threat in the AO to set the conditions for an attack. The troop may be30 assigned a security mission if the brigade wants to ensure their mission31 preparations are not observed by the threat’s reconnaissance.32 Military threats in MTW usually contain33 advanced industrial-age forces, with some34 high technology niches, characterized by both35 heavy and mechanized forces as well as36 motorized/light infantry. These forces are37 mostly equipped with newer generation tanks38 and infantry fighting vehicles, and have39 significant numbers of MANPADs, ATGMs,40 missiles, rockets, artillery mortars, and mines.41 They possess an integrated air defense system42 and a robust military and civilian communications capability. In addition, they43
  • 9. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-6 possess advanced fixed-/rotary-wing aviation assets. Most threats capable of1 initiating an MTW possess weapons capable of mass destruction. These2 threats are capable of long-term, sustained, high-tempo brigade/division-level3 operations. They can also conduct sustained unconventional combat4 operations and limited duration/objective attacks.5 The ability to conduct information operations is increasing among the6 various threat forces in MTW. Our opponents of the future will first read our7 doctrine and then engage us in areas we identify as our pillars and combat8 multipliers. They will seek ways to manipulate the commanders’ trust in the9 veracity of data, information, and knowledge. They will attempt to take away10 the collaboration that leads to situational understanding (a key component of11 information superiority). They will seek to disrupt just-in-time logistics by12 attacking knowledge workers and disrupting the time-phased force13 deployment synchronization, which will affect the operation’s lines of14 communications and aerial ports and seaports of debarkation. Present and15 future trends indicate the acquisition of more sophisticated and advanced16 technology; greater, more capable and secure C3; and increased use of urban17 areas for operating bases and for sanctuary. See Figure 1-1.18 19 Figure 1-1. Characteristics of war.20 21 22
  • 10. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-7 Asymmetric threats seek and strike weaknesses, attack in areas in which they are strong, count on intelligence and deception, and work the fine lines of psychological operations (PSYOPS) and deception. Asymmetric operations are nonlinear and cellular in an organizational sense. Asymmetric operations involve information operations, weapons of mass destruction, and indirect attacks against soldiers, knowledge workers and their families. Characteristics of Smaller-Scale Contingencies1 Historically, smaller-scale contingencies3 like those in Panama, Haiti, and Kosovo have5 occurred in regions with weak infrastructure7 (especially roads, rail, bridges), complex9 terrain with large urban areas, and diverse11 weather patterns. Humanitarian issues, such as13 overpopulation; resource shortages; natural15 disasters; and inadequate local, regional, and17 global response capabilities, complicate19 operations in these areas. Threats in these21 environments usually contain mid- to low-end23 industrial-age forces characterized by limited25 heavy forces, mainly equipped with small27 numbers of early generation tanks, and some29 mechanized but mostly motorized infantry.31 There is a pervasive presence of guerilla,33 terrorist, paramilitary, special purpose forces, special police, and militia34 organizations. These forces are equipped with MANPADs, ATGMs, mortars,35 mines, explosives, and machine guns. There are limited fixed- and rotary-36 wing aviation assets. These forces can be expected, however, to have robust37 communications utilizing conventional military devices augmented by38 commercial equipment such as cell phones. Asymmetric warfare is a perfect39 strategy for operating in this environment due to its operations, which are40 nonlinear and cellular in an organizational sense. Asymmetric foes will seek41 and strike weaknesses, attack in areas in which they are strong, count on42 intelligence and deception, en route and in the objective area. Asymmetric43 foes are weaker than US forces and seek off-sets against our military and44 technical prowess by using indirect approaches, attacking or manipulating our45 vulnerabilities, and often making use of low-tech strategies, techniques, and46 procedures to obtain temporary advantages.47 Threats that use an asymmetric strategy include terrorists, Serbian-type48 paramilitary forces, drug gangs, and criminal groups. These groups are not49 capable of long-term, sustained, high-tempo combat operations. They are50 capable of limited duration and limited objective brigade- and division-level51 operations; i.e., destruction of a weaker force, seizure of an area or region, or52 seizure of an urban center, often emphasizing the use of decentralized and53 distributed operations. They are also capable of conducting defensive operations54 in complex and urban terrain. Forces in this environment are adept at conducting55 long-term, sustained, unconventional terrorist and guerrilla operations. Present56 and future trends indicate the presence of more sophisticated and advanced57 technology; greater, more capable, and secure C3; increased use of urban areas as58 sanctuary for conventional capability and as operating bases; and tactics oriented59 on sophisticated ambush as a key operating focus. See Figure 1-2.60 61
  • 11. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-8 Support operations employ Army forces to assist civil authorities, foreign or domestic, as they prepare for or respond to crisis and relieve suffering. Domestically, Army forces respond only when directed by the National Command Authority. Army forces operate under the lead federal agency, and comply with provisions of US law. Stability operations promote and protect US national interests by influencing the diplomatic, civil, and military environments. Regional security is supported by a balanced approach that enhances regional stability and economic prosperity simultaneously. Army force presence promotes a stable environment. 1 The characteristics of SSC, and to a lesser extent MTW, require the2 execution of stability operations and support operations. The troop’s primary3 responsibility is reconnaissance, but it must be prepared to conduct other4 missions in support of stability operations and support operations (see5 Appendix E).6 It is essential that stability operations not be confused with support7 operations, as these two actions have different and distinct types of missions8 and tasks. While the tasks are unique,9 they are not mutually exclusive and will10 often overlap. The one stability11 operation the brigade will most probably12 perform is peace operations. It is13 probable that many other types of14 stability missions will be integrated into15 peace operations, to include combat16 missions and nontraditional tasks (see17 Figure 1-3).18 19 Stability operations and support20 operations may precede and/or follow21 war, or occur simultaneously in the same22 theater. These actions may be conducted23 in conjunction with wartime operations24 to complement the achievement of25 Figure 1-2. Urban areas can become operational bases for guerrilla operations.
  • 12. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-9 strategic objectives, or they may support a commander’s forward-presence1 operations or a US ambassador’s country plan. They may even occur in the2 US. No matter where stability operations and support operations are3 conducted and regardless of context, they are designed to promote regional4 stability, maintain or achieve democratic end states, retain US influence and5 access abroad, provide humanitarian assistance, protect US interests, and6 assist US civil authorities. The Army conducts stability operations and support7 operations as part of a joint team and often in conjunction with other US and8 foreign government agencies.9 10 11 Figure 1-3. Stability operations.12 13 14 OPERATIONAL CONCEPT15 The brigade combat team’s primary source of information is its organic16 ISR assets. The fundamental role of the two types of reconnaissance troops is17 to perform reconnaissance, surveillance, target acquisition, and battle damage18 assessment. Their operations facilitate the brigade commander’s ability to19 retain freedom of maneuver in order to concentrate combat power and apply20 assets deliberately at the decisive time and place of his choosing. Stealth21 remains the troops’ primary means of force protection, and organic weapons22 are used only in self-defense. See Figure 1-4.23
  • 13. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-10 Relevant information is all information of importance to the troop/squadron/ brigade commander and staff in the exercise of command and control. It provides the answers for the successful conduct of operations, that is, all elements necessary to address the factors of METT-TC. 1 2 Troop Orientation3 Reconnaissance troops are optimized to conduct reconnaissance and4 surveillance of a full multidimensional range of threats operating on an area5 basis. This means that the troop’s orientation is on the area of operations and6 the wide variety of threats facing the brigade. In more traditional7 reconnaissance and surveillance operations, the maneuver formation orients on8 the threat or reconnaissance objective and develops the situation when threat9 contact is made. This “reactionary” approach to reconnaissance operations often10 results in the early commitment of friendly forces to fight at a time and place of11 the threat’s choosing. By leveraging information technology and air/ground12 scout capabilities in complex and urban terrain, the troop can develop the13 situation by focusing early on designated areas and multidimensional and14 asymmetrical threats; thus empowering the brigade commander to achieve15 battlefield mobility and agility while choosing the time and place to confront16 the threat and his method of engagement.17 Situational Awareness, Situational Understanding, and18 Information Superiority19 Relevant information is all information20 of importance to the troop commander and to21 the squadron and brigade commanders and22 their staffs in the exercise of command and23 control. To be relevant, information must be24 accurate, timely, usable, complete, precise,25 and reliable, as humanly and technologically26 possible, to support all types of military27 operations. Relevant information answers the28 Figure 1-4. Stealth remains the primary means of force protection.
  • 14. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-11 Situational awareness is the ability to maintain a constant, clear mental picture of relevant information and the tactical situation. This picture includes a knowledge of both the friendly and threat situations and of relevant terrain. questions that dictate the successful execution of military operations. Simply,1 what do I need to know about the threat? What do I need to know about2 friendly forces? What do I need to know about myself? What do I need to3 know about the terrain and weather? Succinctly, what do I need to know for4 command and control? These questions constitute information requirements.5 Information requirements consist of all information elements required by the6 commander for the successful execution of operations; that is, all elements7 necessary to address the factors of METT-TC. Outfitted with Force XXI8 Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) and given clear information9 requirements, the troop is capable of providing high-quality relevant10 information.11 Situational awareness is the ability12 to maintain a constant, clear mental13 picture of relevant information and the14 tactical situation. Simply stated,15 situational awareness answers the16 question what is the terrain, the friendly17 situation, and the enemy situation. This18 picture includes visualizing/seeing the19 relationship between terrain, friendly20 forces (yourself), and the threat (enemy)21 situations (see Figure 1-5). Since the22 troop normally operates dispersed, with23 its platoons and their individual sections24 conducting decentralized operations, all25 recce leaders must maintain situational26 awareness so they can make sound,27 quick tactical decisions. Critical28 outcomes of situational awareness on the29 part of all scouts are reducing fratricide30 incidents and staying one step ahead of31 the threat they are facing. FBCB2 and32 the Army tactical command and control33 system (ATCCS) assist recce leaders in attaining situational awareness.34 35 The recce platoon and troop assess and report all information within their36 area of operations (AO) to fulfill their primary responsibility of assisting the37 brigade or RSTA squadron in achieving awareness of the situation. The troop38 employs its scout and human intelligence (HUMINT) collection capability39 (“boots on the ground”), augmented with sensor assets and access to other ISR40 reach-back information. The troop fulfills its own information requirements41 and answers the CCIR as it assists in providing situational awareness to the42 higher command. Relevant information as well as a leader’s operational43 picture and the common operational picture (COP) assist in achieving44 situational awareness.45 Figure 1-5. Situational awareness picture.
  • 15. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-12 Situational understanding is the product of applying analysis and judgments to the unit’s situation awareness and/or the COP to determine the relationships among the factors of METT-TC. Situational understanding enhances commanders’ decision making by identifying opportunities for mission accomplishment, threats to the force or mission accomplishment, and gaps in information. An operational picture is a single display of relevant information within a1 commander’s/leader’s area of interest. This information is a display of2 information such as status charts, overlays, and friendly and threat icons. This3 display can be analog (such as a map with acetate overlay) or digital (FBCB24 display). By collaborating, sharing, and tailoring information, separate5 echelons create a common operational picture. A COP is an operational6 picture tailored to the user’s requirements, based on common data and7 information shared by more than one command (troop to platoons,8 brigade/squadron to troop). The troop commander and the brigade/squadron9 commander and his staff merge all relevant information into a COP of the10 commander’s area of interest. The COP allows collaborative interaction and11 real time sharing of information among the commander and his troop12 leadership and the higher commander and his staffs. The COP assists the13 commander in achieving situational awareness; however, it is not a14 requirement. The commander applies his analysis and judgment to his15 situational awareness and the COP to determine the relationships among the16 factors of METT-TC, thereby achieving situational understanding.17 18 Situational awareness based on19 reports (relevant information,20 operational picture, COP) from the21 platoon and the troop and other22 elements are the key components of23 situational understanding at the24 troop, brigade and/or squadron level.25 Situational understanding is the26 product of applying analysis and27 judgments to the unit’s situational28 awareness and/or the COP to determine the relationships among the factors of29 METT-TC. Simply stated, situational understanding answers the question30 what it means. When the commander attains situational understanding, he can31 make sound decisions (see Figure 1-6).32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41
  • 16. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-13 Information superiority is a significant information advantage gained by collecting, processing, and disseminating an uninterrupted flow of relevant information in support of military operations while exploiting or denying a threat or adversary the ability to do the same. 1 Figure 1-6. Flow of relevant information into2 situational understanding.3 4 Information superiority is the5 operational advantage derived from the6 ability to collect, process, and disseminate7 an uninterrupted flow of information8 while exploiting or denying an adversary’s9 ability to do the same. Commanders10 exploit information superiority to impact11 threat perceptions, attitudes, decisions,12 and actions to accomplish mission objectives. During the course of13 operations, all sides attempt to gain information superiority to secure an14 operational advantage while denying it to adversaries. (NOTE: See FM 3-015 [FM 100-5] for more information on information superiority.)16 17 Visualizing the Battlefield18 The greatest challenge leaders face during operations is seeing, or more19 accurately, “visualizing” the battlefield in both real time and in the future.20 Normally their physical view is limited to brief segments of the battlefield.21 They must develop an art of visualizing what is occurring or might occur22 within their area of interest. For some, this comes almost naturally. For most,23 however, it requires a great deal of experience to adequately visualize the24 complexities of the battlefield. Enhanced analog and digital communications25 (FBCB2), computers, and command/control (C4) systems in the troop portray26 key relevant threat information so that commanders and staffs can better27 visualize the battlefield and be situationally aware. Not only will these28
  • 17. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-14 systems fuse standard threat information (location, composition, and1 disposition) but also multidimensional aspects—psychological, physical,2 allegiance, intent, underground and above-ground infrastructure—that must3 now be considered. High technology facilitates analysis of this information4 through digital systems and the transmitting and receiving of intelligence5 (vertically and horizontally) rapidly enhances the brigade’s situational6 awareness. See Figure 1-7.7 8 Figure 1-7. Visualizing the battlefield using reconnaissance assets.9 10 11 12 SECTION II. ORGANIZATIONS13 THE RECCE TROOP (RSTA)14 The troop consists of six officers and 84 enlisted soldiers. It is organized15 into a headquarters section, a mortar section, and three scout platoons.16 17 Headquarters Section18 The troop headquarters section is organized and equipped to perform19 command and control and logistical support functions for the troop. The20 section consists of three officers and fourteen enlisted soldiers. The21 headquarters section includes the troop commander, executive officer, first22 sergeant, and the operations, NBC, communications, and supply sergeants.23
  • 18. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-15 The troop does not have any organic maintenance assets or personnel other1 than the two communications repairmen. See Figure 1-8.2 3 4 Figure 1-8. Troop headquarters section.5 6 7 Troop Command Post8 The troop command post (CP) serves as the net control station for the9 troop and is a critical communications link to the squadron or brigade TOC.10 One of the primary functions of the troop CP is collecting combat information11 from the scout platoons and reporting significant threat information gathered12 during their reconnaissance and surveillance activities to the higher TOC. The13 CP functions are as follows:14 • Assist the commander in command and control.15 • Coordinate combat service support for the troop.16 • Report information to higher headquarters and adjacent units.17 The CP operates under the direction of the XO, and is manned by the18 troop operations sergeant, the NBC NCO and the two communications19 maintenance personnel. The CP tracks the battle at the troop and squadron20 levels and relays information to the commander and subordinate platoons21 pertaining to the friendly and enemy situation. The CP assists the commander22 in the control of the troop by advising him on the status of subordinate and23 adjacent units, by assisting in creating/forwarding digital and voice reports,24 and by controlling and monitoring the troop’s combat service support25
  • 19. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-16 activities. The CP continuously monitors the situational awareness picture to1 alert elements to threat, terrain conditions, or obstacles. The CP coordinates2 and integrates actions with supporting and adjacent units. The primary3 concern when positioning the troop CP is its ability to communicate with the4 controlling unit command post and the subordinate elements of the troop.5 During reconnaissance or offensive operations, the CP should remain at6 least one terrain feature behind the troop combat elements, positioned to7 maintain communications with the platoons and the controlling brigade8 command post (TAC or main). During security or defensive operations, the9 CP should be positioned in sufficient depth to avoid contact with the threat10 while maintaining communications with the forward scout sections.11 NOTE: The previous example portrays the troop CP location in a linear12 environment. For noncontiguous environments, the troop is13 positioned to facilitate command, control, and communications and14 to provide local security. See Appendix G for more detailed15 information on the troop command post.16 17 HUMINT NCO (97B)18 The HUMINT NCOIC is responsible for the training of the HUMINT19 collectors. He advises the reconnaissance troop commander on the optimal20 utilization of the HUMINT collectors. He provides technical support and21 advice to the HUMINT collectors concerning HUMINT collection and22 reporting methodology. He reviews HUMINT reporting for format and23 completeness. He reviews HUMINT collector recommendations, identifying24 sources for further exploitation by the tactical HUMINT platoon of the MI25 Company. During tactical operations, he is located in the troop CP. He acts26 as the troop intelligence oversight NCO and is the troop POC with the S2X for27 technical support to HUMINT collection operations.28 29 The Fire Support Team30 The fire support team (FIST) is responsible for coordinating indirect fires31 for the troop. The FIST consists of one fire support officer (FSO), one NCO32 (team chief), one enlisted fire support specialist, and one enlisted radio33 operator/driver. In the recce troop, the team is mounted on an IAV fire34 support vehicle (see Figure 1-9).35 36 Figure 1-9. FIST organization.37
  • 20. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-17 Human Intelligence is the intelligence derived from the analysis of information obtained from a human source or a related document by a HUMINT collector. The HUMINT discipline includes those personnel and organizations directed toward the collection, processing, analysis, and production of human intelligence. Recce Platoon1 The recce platoon’s primary missions are reconnaissance/surveillance,2 execution of security missions, and in some METT-TC conditions, to conduct3 offensive or defensive missions. Serving as the commander’s eyes and ears,4 recce platoons provide current battlefield information to help the troop5 commander plan and conduct tactical operations. They are critical in painting6 the picture of the enemy situation, using both FM and digital communications7 (FBCB2). Additionally, the scouts can be expected to execute target8 acquisition missions and battle damage assessment.9 10 11 The recce platoons are organized and equipped to conduct reconnaissance12 and screening in support of the troop. They may conduct an economy-of-13 force role, or offensive, defensive, and retrograde operations based on METT-14 TC. The platoon consists of one officer and 20 enlisted soldiers (see Figure15 1-10.)16 17 18 Figure 1-10. Recce platoon organization.19 20 Each recce squad in the platoon has an21 assigned a 97B HUMINT collector. The22 HUMINT collector conducts initial23 contact and gathers information from24 EPWs, detainees, refugees, local25 inhabitants, friendly forces, and captured26 documents. The reconnaissance27 HUMINT collectors in the RSTA28 squadron are integral parts of the29 reconnaissance squads. They conduct tactical questioning (the expedient30
  • 21. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-18 initial questioning of a HUMINT source directed toward the collection of1 priority tactical information) and limited document exploitation in support of2 the RSTA squadron’s ground reconnaissance mission. They pass their3 collection results through their chain of command in the form of SALUTE4 reports. They do not have the expertise, experience, or organizational support5 to conduct contact operations, nor will they be tasked with conducting6 counterintelligence operations. They will, however, pass source data through7 the HUMINT NCOIC to the S2X to help the S2X identify human sources for8 exploitation by the tactical HUMINT teams of the MI Company.9 10 The recce platoon may operate with attached STRIKER teams, TUAV11 teams, IREMBASS-equipped MI teams, or attached engineer elements. The12 platoon can organize into various configurations, but is usually employed as13 two scout sections, depending on factors of METT-TC.14 15 16 Mortar Section17 The mortar section is organized and equipped to provide immediate18 indirect fires in support of troop operations. Such supporting fires are usually19 suppression, screening, obscuration, or illumination. The section consists of20 10 enlisted soldiers. It is equipped with two 120-mm mortars mounted in two21 self-propelled mortar carriers. See Figure 1-11.22 23 24 Figure 1-11. Mortar section organization.25 26 27
  • 22. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-19 THE BRIGADE RECONNAISSANCE TROOP1 The BRT consists of four officers and 45 enlisted soldiers. It is organized2 into a headquarters section and two scout platoons (see Figure 1-12).3 4 5 Figure 1-12. Brigade reconnaissance troop organization.6 7 8
  • 23. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-20 Headquarters Section1 The BRT headquarters section is organized and equipped to perform2 command and control and logistical support functions for the BRT. The3 section consists of two officers and 11 enlisted soldiers. The headquarters4 section includes the troop commander, executive officer, first sergeant, and5 the NBC, communications, and supply sergeants. The troop does not have6 any organic maintenance assets or personnel other than the two7 communications repairmen. See Figure 1-13.8 9 10 Figure 1-13. BRT headquarters organization.11 12 BRT Command Post (CP)13 The BRT CP serves as the net control station for the troop and is a critical14 communications link to the BCT TOC. One of the primary functions of the15 BRT CP is collecting combat information from the scout platoons and16 reporting significant threat information gathered during their reconnaissance17 and surveillance activities to the BCT TOC. The CP functions are as follows:18 • Assist the commander in command and control.19 • Coordinate combat service support for the BRT.20 • Report information to BCT headquarters and to forward and adjacent21 units.22 • Coordinate required information from higher.23 • Ensure information is pushed down.24
  • 24. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-21 The CP operates under the direction of the XO, and is manned by the1 troop operations sergeant, the NBC NCO, and the two communication2 maintenance personnel. The CP tracks the battle at the troop and BCT levels3 and relays information to the commander and subordinate platoons pertaining4 to the friendly and enemy situation. The CP assists the commander in the5 control of the BRT by advising him on the status of subordinate units and6 adjacent units, by assisting in creating/forwarding digital and voice reports,7 and by controlling and monitoring the BRT’s combat service support8 activities. The CP continuously monitors the situational awareness picture to9 alert elements to unexpected threat, terrain conditions, or obstacles. The CP10 coordinates and integrates actions with supporting and adjacent units. The11 primary concern when positioning the BRT CP is its ability to communicate12 with the controlling brigade command post and the subordinate elements of13 the BRT.14 During reconnaissance or offensive operations, the CP should remain at15 least one terrain feature behind the BRT combat elements, positioned to16 maintain communications with the platoons and the controlling brigade17 command post (TAC or main). During security or defensive operations, the18 CP should be positioned in sufficient depth to avoid contact with the threat19 while maintaining communications with the forward scout sections.20 21 Scout Platoon22 The scout platoons are organized and equipped to conduct reconnaissance23 and screening in support of the BCT. The scout platoons may conduct an24 economy-of-force role, or offensive, defensive, and retrograde operations25 based on METT-TC. The platoon consists of one officer and 17 enlisted26 soldiers. It is equipped with six M1025/M1026 HMMWVs (three MK-1927 equipped and three caliber .50 equipped, with three of the six also LRAS328 equipped). The scout platoon frequently operates with attached STRIKER29 teams, IREMBASS-equipped MI teams, or attached engineer elements. The30 platoon can organize into various configurations, but is usually employed as a31 headquarters and two scout sections, depending on factors of METT-TC. See32 Figure 1-14.33
  • 25. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-22 1 Figure 1-14. BRT scout platoon organization.2 3 4 5 Strike Recon (STRIKER) Platoon6 The STRIKER platoon is organic to the direct support artillery battalion,7 but will normally operate in direct support of the brigade, with the platoon8 leader acting as the BRT fire support officer. Although the STRIKER platoon9 leader does not have the same number of FM communication links that the10 FIST does, he can fulfill the same role during planning and preparation. The11 troop TOC must ensure that the STRIKER has communication with the12 brigade fire support element.13 The platoon is composed of one officer and 20 enlisted soldiers organized14 into a platoon headquarters and three squads, with each squad composed of15 two teams. Each team is equipped with the lightweight laser16 designator/rangefinder (LLDR) that will lase targets for those munitions17 requiring reflected laser energy for final ballistics guidance. They are also18 equipped with the AFATDS lightweight computer unit loaded with the19 forward observer software (FOS-LCU). The target designator set is also20 equipped with a thermal sight. They operate from the same or similar21 HMMWV platforms as the BRT scouts and are capable of both mounted and22 dismounted operations. See Figure 1-15.23
  • 26. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-23 1 Figure 1-15. STRIKER platoon organization.2 3
  • 27. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-24 SECTION III. MISSIONS, CAPABILITIES, AND1 LIMITATIONS2 Cavalry troops perform reconnaissance and security missions to provide3 timely information to the maneuver commander and protect and preserve the4 fighting ability of the units to which they are assigned or attached. Troops5 may also conduct additional missions as assigned. Cavalry troops in general6 have limitations and capabilities associated with their TOEs and METT-TC7 that must be considered when employing them in a specific mission role (see8 Figure 1-16). The capabilities and limitations of each organization will be9 covered in each respective chapter.10 11 RECCE TRP BRT RECONNAISSANCE MISSIONS Route P/R P/R Zone F F Area F F SECURITY MISSIONS Screen P/R R Area Security P P Route Security N N Convoy Security R P/R F = Fully Capable R = Capable When Reinforced P = Capable Under Permissive METT-TC N = Not- applicable Mission Figure 1-16. Troop missions.12 13 OFFENSIVE AND DEFENSIVE MISSIONS14 Although the reconnaissance troop is not optimized for decisive15 operations, it may be tasked to conduct offensive and defensive missions in16 support of the brigade’s or the squadron’s operations. The troop has the17 required assets for command and control but must be heavily augmented with18 combat units to be successful in an offensive or defensive mission.19 20 STABILITY OPERATIONS OR SUPPORT OPERATIONS21 With permissive METT-TC, the recce troop is capable of operations in a22 stability or a support environment. Refer to Appendix E for a detailed23 discussion of reconnaissance troop operations in a stability or support24 operational environment.25
  • 28. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-25 SECTION IV. RESPONSIBILITIES1 TROOP COMMANDER2 The troop commander is responsible to his higher commander for the3 discipline, combat readiness, and training of the troop, and for the4 maintenance of its equipment. He must be proficient in the tactical5 employment of the troop and its assigned and attached CSS elements. He must6 also know the capabilities and limitations of the troop’s personnel and7 equipment as well as those of CSS elements attached to him.8 The troop commander’s responsibility in combat is twofold. He will—9 • Accomplish all missions assigned to the troop in accordance with the10 higher commander’s intent.11 • Preserve the fighting capability of the troop.12 13 EXECUTIVE OFFICER14 The troop XO is second in command. He supervises the troop TOC, and15 stays attuned to the tactical situation in the troop’s AO. He receives, verifies,16 and consolidates digital and voice tactical reports from the platoons and17 forwards them to the squadron, adjacent, and following units. When elements18 are in contact and at night when light discipline limits FBCB2 use, the XO19 and personnel in the troop CPs convert FM threat SPOTREPs into digital20 reports to generate the red situational awareness picture. During all operations,21 he monitors the situational awareness picture to warn elements of unexpected22 threat, obstacles, or terrain. Assisted by the troop 1SG and the supply23 sergeant, the XO plans and coordinates CSS operations. The XO assists the24 commander in performing PCI checks, and he should ensure all voice and25 digital communications are properly functioning to support combat26 operations. He assists the commander in planning, integrating, and27 coordinating operations and in the integration of attached or task organized28 elements. The XO must be an expert in IPB. He assists the commander in the29 development and continual management of the IPB for the troop.30 31 FIRST SERGEANT32 The 1SG is the troop’s senior NCO and normally is its most experienced33 soldier. He is an expert in individual and NCO skills. The primary34 responsibility of the troop 1SG is sustaining the troop’s ability to fight. He is35 the commander’s primary tactical advisor. He is the troop’s primary CSS36 operator; he helps the commander to plan, coordinate, and supervise all37 logistical activities that support the tactical mission. He operates where the38 commander directs or where his duties require him.39
  • 29. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-26 The 1SG’s specific duties include the following:1 • Execute and supervise routine operations. This may include enforcing2 the tactical SOP; planning and coordinating training; coordinating and3 reporting personnel and administrative actions; and supervising4 supply, maintenance, communications, and field hygiene operations.5 • Supervise, inspect, and/or observe all matters designated by the6 commander. For example, the 1SG may observe and report on a7 portion of the troop’s sector.8 • Plan, rehearse, and supervise key logistical actions in support of the9 tactical mission. These activities include resupply of Class I, III, and V10 products and materials; maintenance and recovery; medical treatment11 and evacuation; and replacement/RTD processing.12 • Assist and coordinate with the XO in all critical functions.13 • As necessary, serve as quartering party NCOIC.14 • Conduct training and ensure proficiency in individual and NCO skills15 and small-unit collective skills that support the troop’s METL.16 • In conjunction with the commander, establish and maintain the17 foundation for troop discipline.18 TROOP FIRE SUPPORT OFFICER19 The troop fire support officer (FSO) assists the commander in planning,20 coordinating, and executing the troop’s fire support requirements and target21 acquisition tasks (target acquisition tasks are discussed in Chapter 6). During22 operational planning, he develops and refines a fire support plan based on the23 commander’s concept and guidance. He then coordinates the plan with the24 squadron FSO. The troop FSO may control and position the mortars during25 combat operations. The FSO also has these responsibilities:26 • Advise the commander on the capabilities and current status of all27 available fire support assets.28 • Serve as the commander’s primary advisor on the threat’s indirect fire29 capabilities.30 • Assist the commander in developing the OPORD to ensure full31 integration of fires.32 • Recommend targets and fire control measures, and determine methods33 of engagement and responsibility for firing the targets.34 • Determine the specific tasks and instructions required to conduct and35 control the fire plan.36 • Develop an observation plan, with limited visibility contingencies, that37 supports the troop and squadron missions.38
  • 30. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-27 • Brief the fire support plan to the troop commander and the squadron1 FSO.2 • Refine and integrate the troop target worksheet; submit the completed3 worksheet to the squadron fire support element.4 • Assist the commander in incorporating execution of the indirect fire5 and target acquisition plan into each rehearsal. This includes6 integrating indirect fire observers into the rehearsal plan.7 • In tactical situations, alert the commander if a request for fires against8 a target has been denied.9 • In tactical situations, monitor the location and capabilities of friendly10 units and assist the commander in clearance of indirect fires.11 • Request counterbattery support in response to threat artillery and/or12 mortar attacks.13 14 PLATOON LEADER15 The platoon leader is responsible to the troop commander for the16 discipline, combat readiness, and training of the platoon, and for the17 maintenance of its equipment. He must be proficient in the tactical18 employment of the platoon and know the capabilities and limitations of the19 platoon’s personnel and equipment.20 21 The platoon leader’s responsibility in combat is twofold. He must—22 • Accomplish all missions assigned to the platoon in accordance with23 the troop commander’s intent.24 • Preserve the fighting capability of the platoon.25 26 PLATOON SERGEANT27 The platoon sergeant (PSG) leads elements of the platoon as directed by28 the platoon leader, and assumes command of the platoon in his absence. The29 PSG assists the platoon leader in maintaining discipline, conducting training,30 and exercising control. He supervises platoon CSS, which includes supply and31 equipment maintenance.32 33 34
  • 31. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 1-28 MORTAR SECTION SERGEANT1 The mortar section sergeant is responsible for providing responsive2 indirect fires to support the troop commander’s concept of the operation. He3 is also the principal advisor to the commander and FSO on the tactical4 employment of mortars. He performs the following functions:5 • Recommends task organization, employment techniques, and6 positioning of the mortars to support the scheme of maneuver.7 • Assists in developing the troop fire support plan; determines the best8 type and amount of mortar ammunition to fire, based on the factors of9 METT-TC.10 • Is responsible for training the platoon to ensure technical and tactical11 proficiency and combat lifesaver skills; cross-trains personnel within12 the platoon on key tasks to ensure continuous operations.13 • Selects and reconnoiters new positions and routes for the platoon;14 controls the movements of the section.15 • Keeps abreast of the enemy situation and locations of friendly units to16 ensure the best use of ammunition and the safety of friendly troops.17 • Supervises the execution of orders; ensures that priority targets are18 covered at all times; establishes the amount and type of ammunition19 set aside for priority targets.20 • Coordinates the fires and displacement of the mortar section with the21 action of other units.22 • Anticipates needs and ensures timely ammunition resupply,23 maintenance, and refuel requests are submitted to sustain combat24 operations.25 26 SUPPLY SERGEANT27 The supply sergeant picks up, transports, and issues supplies and28 equipment to the troop. He works closely with the 1SG to accomplish these29 tasks. He also evacuates enemy prisoners of war and assists in the evacuation30 of soldiers who are killed in action to the graves registration collection point.31 32 NUCLEAR, BIOLOGICAL, CHEMICAL (NBC) NCO33 The troop NBC NCO is responsible for troop NBC defense activities. He34 supervises radiological monitoring, chemical detection, and decontamination35 operations. He assists in maintaining NBC equipment and training NBC36 equipment operators and decontamination teams.37 38
  • 32. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-1 Battle command is the exercise of command in operations against a hostile, thinking opponent. It combines leadership and the art and science of battlefield decision making to successfully accomplish assigned missions. CHAPTER 21 BATTLE COMMAND2 Battle command is the art and3 science of decision making, leading,4 and motivating soldiers and5 organizations into action to6 accomplish missions. Battle command7 entails visualizing the operation, from8 start to finish and formulating a9 concept of operation to get from the10 current state to the desired end state. In addition to visualizing and11 formulating concepts, battle command encompasses assigning missions;12 prioritizing and allocating resources; selecting the critical time and place to13 act; and knowing how and when to make adjustments in the fight. By14 integrating command and control, communications, computer technology, and15 intelligence (C4I), the brigade’s battle command systems enable the16 commander to have accurate and timely information upon which to base his17 decisions.18 The reconnaissance troop supports the brigade’s battle command by—19 • Facilitating the commander’s ability to visualize the operation by20 answering information requirements (IR and CCIR) and providing21 detailed information on the terrain and threat in his AO and AI22 (components of METT-TC).23 • Defining portions of METT-TC to allow the commander to describe24 the operation with his intent and specified tasks to his subordinates.25 • Assisting the commander’s ability to direct forces by facilitating26 situational awareness (SA) and contributing in the brigade’s situational27 understanding (SU).28 29 30 CONTENTS31 Page32 SECTION I. Command and Control .................................................... 2-333 SECTION II. Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and34 Intelligence Architectures.............................................. 2-4635 SECTION III. Techniques of Tactical Control........................................ 2-5736 SECTION IV. Command Guidance and Organizational Control............ 2-5737 SECTION V. Tactical Movement .......................................................... 2-6938 39 40 Battle command is the art of decision making and leading on the41 battlefield. It covers the knowledge, techniques, and procedures necessary to42
  • 33. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-2 control operations and to motivate soldiers and their organizations into action1 to accomplish assigned missions. As part of battle command, commanders2 visualize the current state of the battlefield as well as future states at different3 points in the operation; they then formulate concepts of operations that allow4 their units to progress from one state to the other at the least cost. Other5 elements of the battle command process include assigning missions,6 prioritizing and allocating resources, selecting the critical times and places to7 act, and knowing how and when to make adjustments during the fight.8 9 10 Battle command of reconnaissance units is typically decentralized due to11 the size of the area of operation (AO) and the nature of reconnaissance12 missions. The reconnaissance troop is a vital element in developing13 information on the terrain and threat within the brigade’s battlespace, which14 may extend over 65 x 100 kilometers. Operating widely disbursed over15 extended space places the burden of sound, timely decision making at the16 lowest levels. Intensive, challenging training in reconnaissance, reporting,17 and communications techniques is essential for the troop, and ultimately the18 brigade, to be successful.19 20 21 The reconnaissance commander employs a variety of means to prepare for22 operations, issue orders, employ the troop, and communicate. The success of23 this command and control process rests mainly on effective training; thorough24 (and thoroughly understood) SOPs; accurate, timely communications; and,25 most of all, decisive leadership.26 27 28 The advent and continual development of digital systems facilitates battle29 command at all echelons. The troop clearly gains from the digital displays of30 friendly and reported threat forces as well as the navigational aids that Force31 XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) provides. Continual32 development of FBCB2 will improve the ability of troop personnel to analyze33 terrain, report quickly and accurately, and maneuver over increasingly large34 sectors.35 36 Effective battle command begins in the planning phase and continues37 through the consolidation phase. This chapter outlines the digital tools and38 techniques a troop commander needs to effectively command and control (C2)39 his unit in combat. It also addresses aspects of situational awareness, planning,40 and C2 procedures in a digital environment.41 42
  • 34. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-3 Command and control is the exercise of authority and direction by a properly designated commander over assigned and attached forces in the accomplishment of the mission. SECTION I. COMMAND AND CONTROL1 The command and control (C2) system is2 the arrangement of personnel, information3 management, procedures, equipment, and4 facilities essential to the commander to plan,5 prepare, execute, and assess operations. The6 C2 system supports the commander in three7 ways:8 • Creating and maintaining the common operational picture.9 • Supporting decision making by improving its speed and accuracy.10 • Supporting preparation and communication of execution of11 information.12 A commander cannot exercise command and control alone except in the13 simplest and smallest organizations. Even at the lowest levels, however, a14 commander needs some support to exercise C2 effectively. At the troop level,15 the C2 system—integrating key personnel, FBCB2, FM communications,16 doctrinal procedures, and unit SOPs—provides that support.17 DISTRIBUTION OF COMMAND AND CONTROL18 Troop Commander19 20 The commander is responsible for everything the troop does, or fails to do.21 His responsibilities include leadership, discipline, tactical employment,22 training, administration, personnel management, supply, maintenance,23 communications, and sustainment activities. These duties require the24 commander to understand the capabilities of his soldiers and their equipment25 and to know how to employ them to best tactical advantage. At the same time,26 he must be well versed in enemy organizations, doctrine, and equipment.27 28 Using this knowledge, the commander prepares his unit for combat29 operations using troop-leading procedures. Ultimately, he must know how to30 exercise command effectively and decisively. He must be flexible, using31 sound judgment to make correct decisions quickly and at the right time based32 on the higher commander’s intent and the tactical situation. He must be able to33 issue instructions to his subordinate leaders in the form of clear, accurate34 combat orders; he then must ensure that the orders are executed.35 36 37
  • 35. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-4 The troop commander’s responsibilities in the tactical environment are—1 • Serving as the subject matter expert in reconnaissance and security2 fundamentals and critical tasks.3 • Planning and executing fires to support the troop’s missions.4 • Synchronizing operations with adjacent units and supporting units.5 • Synchronizing and planning the use of additional ISR assets (TUAV,6 IREMBASS, GSR, PROPHET, CI, etc).7 • Understanding brigade combat team (BCT) doctrine.8 • Synchronizing and planning the use of additional combat arms assets9 (infantry platoon, MGS platoon, tank or mechanized platoon).10 • Accomplishing all missions assigned to the troop in accordance with11 the higher commander’s intent and scheme of maneuver.12 • Preserving the reconnaissance capability of the troop.13 Executive Officer14 15 In combat, the troop executive officer (XO) is second in command. He16 supervises the troop command post (CP), where he stays abreast of the tactical17 situation in the troop’s area of operations (AO). He manages the flow of18 combat information, both FM and digital, between the troop and the higher19 unit from the troop CP.20 21 The XO’s other duties are:22 • Ensure accurate, timely tactical reports are sent to the23 brigade/squadron.24 • Assume command of the troop, as required.25 • In conjunction with the 1SG, plan and supervise the troop’s CSS effort26 prior to the battle.27 • Assist in preparation of the OPORD, especially paragraph 4 (service28 support).29 • Conduct tactical coordination with higher, adjacent, and supporting30 units.31 • As required, assist the commander in issuing orders to the troop32 headquarters and attachments.33 • Conduct additional missions, as required. These may include serving34 as OIC for a quartering party or as the leader of the detachment left in35 contact (DLIC) in a withdrawal.36 • Assist the commander in preparations for follow-on missions.37
  • 36. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-5 Troop Command Post1 The troop CP serves as the net control station for the troop and is a critical2 communications link to the squadron or brigade TOC. One of the primary3 functions of the troop CP is collecting combat information from the scout4 platoons and reporting significant threat information gathered during their5 reconnaissance and surveillance activities to the higher TOC. The CP6 functions are as follows:7 • Assist the commander in command and control.8 • Coordinate combat service support for the troop.9 • Report information to higher headquarters and adjacent units.10 NOTE: Refer to Appendix G, Command Post Operations, for more detailed11 discussion.12 First Sergeant13 The primary responsibility of the troop 1SG is sustaining the troop’s14 ability to conduct continued operations. He supervises the procurement and15 distribution of—16 • All classes of supplies.17 • Personnel replacements.18 • Actions of the maintenance section, to include recovery and19 evacuation of damaged combat equipment.20 • Medical, KIA, and EPW evacuation.21 22 Using the FBCB2 system, he consolidates the platoon’s logistical status23 (LOGSTAT) and personnel status (PERSTAT) reports and digitally sends24 them to the squadron S4/S1. He assists the troop commander and XO in C225 and digital reporting.26 Reconnaissance Platoon Leader27 The platoon leader is responsible to the troop commander for the28 discipline and combat readiness of the platoon. He must be proficient in the29 use of his digital equipment and tactical employment of the platoon. He must30 know the capabilities and limitations of the platoon’s personnel and31 equipment. He must remain cognizant of all attached elements operating in32 his sector of responsibility, and continually update plans for their security and33 logistical support as required. The platoon leader’s responsibilities in combat34 are—35 • To accomplish all missions assigned to the platoon in accordance with36 the troop commander’s intent.37
  • 37. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-6 • To preserve the reconnaissance capability of the platoon, and inform1 the commander and XO of the tactical situation via FM and digitized2 contact and spot reports.3 • To lead an integrated scout/STRIKER platoon in executing both fire4 support and R&S missions.5 Reconnaissance Platoon Sergeant6 The platoon sergeant is the senior NCO in the platoon. He leads elements7 of the platoon as directed by the platoon leader and assumes command of the8 platoon in the platoon leader’s absence. He assists the platoon leader in9 maintaining discipline and exercising control. He supervises platoon CSS, to10 include supply requirements and equipment maintenance, and monitors the11 platoon’s logistics status and submits FBCB2 LOGSTAT reports.12 Fire Support Team13 The fire support team (FIST) is the critical link with the supporting14 artillery and is responsible for coordinating indirect fires (mortar, field15 artillery [FA], close air support [CAS]) for the troop. The team processes16 calls for fire from the platoons and allocates the appropriate indirect-fire17 system based on the commander’s guidance for fire support. The FIST can18 also assist the brigade/squadron with the employment of joint fires.19 NOTE: In the brigade reconnaissance troop (BRT), the STRIKER platoon20 leader may fill the role of the FIST.21 The FIST operates on three radio nets:22 • Troop command.23 • Troop fire direction.24 • Squadron fire support element digital/voice.25 26 The FIST monitors at least one of the following nets:27 • Squadron command.28 • Squadron operations and intelligence (OI).29 • Firing battery (supporting artillery headquarters in the heavy and light30 division).31 32 The fire support team vehicle also may serve as the alternate troop CP.33 The fire support officer has ready access to the higher-level situation and the34 radio systems to replicate the troop CP if it becomes damaged or destroyed.35 36 Command guidance to the FIST should include the following:37 • Purpose of indirect fires. How does the commander intend to use FA38 and mortar fires to support his maneuver?39
  • 38. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-7 − Screening.1 − Suppression.2 − Disengagement.3 • Engagement/attack criteria. How many rounds and of what type and4 mix will be fired at a particular target? Which targets will be engaged5 with artillery and which with mortars?6 • Control of troop mortars. If the FIST controls movement of troop7 mortars, how far forward of the scouts will the mortars be able to8 range? Where are the mortars going to move? When are the mortars9 going to move?10 The primary considerations when positioning the FIST are security of the11 team and the ability to communicate with the squadron fire support element,12 howitzer battery, or direct support artillery. The FIST is not the forward13 observer team for the troop; the troop has 19Ds that act as forward observers.14 The five techniques to maneuvering the FIST are—15 • Maneuvers with the commander.16 • Maneuvers with or near the mortar section.17 • Maneuvers with the troop CP.18 • Maneuvers alone to maintain communications.19 • Maneuvers with the scouts to directly control fires or to use the ground20 laser designator (GLD).21 See Chapter 6 for a more in-depth discussion of troop fire support C222 techniques.23 Mortar Section Sergeant (Recce Troop Only)24 The mortar section sergeant is responsible for providing responsive25 indirect fires to support the commander’s concept of the operation. The26 section sergeant assists the troop commander in indirect mortar fire planning.27 He assists in establishing movement control, triggers for movement, triggers28 for shifting targets, and mortar caches. As a rule of thumb the section29 maintains two-thirds maximum range of mortar fire forward of the30 reconnaissance elements. The section sergeant is charged with maintaining31 discipline, conducting training, and exercising control over his mortar section.32 He supervises the section’s CSS, which includes supply and equipment33 maintenance.34 Supply Sergeant35 Working closely with the 1SG, the supply sergeant assumes responsibility36 for troop logistical support. Using his position navigation capability and37
  • 39. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-8 established checkpoint data, he leads the LOGPAC to the linkup point, or if1 the situation dictates, moves it forward to the supported unit’s location. He2 also evacuates EPWs and assists in the evacuation of soldiers killed in action3 to the mortuary affairs collection point.4 Communications Sergeant5 The communications sergeant assists in all aspects of tactical6 communications. He locates with the XO or 1SG per SOP and may operate7 the troop net control station (NCS). He receives and distributes signal8 operating instructions (SOI) and COMSEC encryption keys. He ensures the9 troop receives the appropriate database for FBCB2, SINCGARS-SIP, EPLRS,10 very high-speed integrated circuit (VHSIC), and other systems operating on11 the tactical internet. He ensures operators are properly trained in initialization12 and re-initialization of the systems and maintains the troop addressing and13 routing schemes. He troubleshoots troop digital communications equipment14 and ensures that necessary repairs are completed.15 Nuclear, Biological, Chemical Sergeant16 The troop NBC sergeant is responsible for troop NBC defense activities.17 He supervises radiological monitoring, chemical detection, and18 decontamination operations. He assists in maintaining NBC equipment and19 training NBC equipment operators and decontamination teams. He operates20 from the troop CP and assists the XO in executing C2 operations. He is the21 NBC expert and advises the commander in the employment of the NBC22 reconnaissance section/platoon troop, if augmented with this asset.23 Troop HUMINT NCO (Recce Troop only)24 The troop HUMINT collection NCO advises the troop commander on25 HUMINT collection operations, provides assessment and quality control of26 HUMINT collection and source spotting, and ensures that HUMINT training27 is conducted to standard. He operates from the troop CP and assists the XO in28 executing C2 operations. (See Chapter 6, Section I, for more information on29 HUMINT collection personnel.)30 COMMAND AND CONTROL PROCEDURES31 32 Whether a unit is digital or analog, command and control procedures33 provide effective guidelines for planning and preparing a unit for operations.34 Techniques for utilizing digital systems to aid in the execution of these35 procedures are included.36 37 38
  • 40. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-9 Mission-Oriented Command and Control1 This method of directing military operations encourages and assists2 subordinates in taking action consistent with the intent and concept of higher3 headquarters. Mission-oriented command and control requires a clear4 understanding by subordinate elements of the unit purpose; at the same time,5 it provides them with the freedom to react to enemy actions without further6 guidance. The following paragraphs outline the underlying principles of this7 type of command and control.8 9 Expect Uncertainty. The commander must understand the environment10 of combat. The operation will be dynamic and the enemy uncooperative.11 Communications may be degraded, and the chaos of battle may prevent the12 commander from knowing what is happening beyond the reach of his own13 senses. The situation the unit anticipates during the planning phase will14 inevitably change before and during execution.15 16 Reduce Leader Intervention. When soldiers expect the commander to17 make every decision or initiate every action, they may become reluctant to act.18 To counter this tendency, the commander must plan and direct operations in a19 manner that requires a minimum of intervention. He operates on the principle20 that some loss of precision is better than inactivity.21 22 The commander still must be prepared to provide subordinates with the23 criteria and guidance for making decisions when precise control is required24 for synchronization. During the planning process, he should identify those25 few critical decisions that will absolutely be required during the operation and26 then determine the criteria for initiation of actions associated with these27 decisions. Examples include the use of engagement criteria, bypass criteria,28 and disengagement criteria. The commander then disseminates the decision29 criteria throughout the troop.30 31 NOTE: The commander must keep in mind that changing conditions and32 unexpected situations will require him to make decisions33 continuously once the operation begins. His preparations related to34 critical decisions will allow him, and his subordinates, to react more35 effectively when changes become necessary.36 37 Optimize Planning Time for Subordinates. The commander must38 ensure that the timelines he develops for mission planning and preparation39 provide adequate troop-leading time for the subordinate elements. An40 effective way to optimize the use of the available time, no matter how short, is41 to conduct training of the troop orders process under tough, realistic42 conditions at every available opportunity.43 44 Allow Maximum Freedom of Action for Subordinates. Given the45 expected battlefield conditions, leaders at every level must avoid placing46
  • 41. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-10 unnecessary limits on their soldiers’ freedom of action. The leader at the1 point of decision must have the knowledge, training, and freedom necessary to2 make the correct choice in support of the commander’s intent. This concept3 must be emphasized at every opportunity at every level of leadership.4 Soldiers win battles; their leaders can only place them in a position where they5 are able to seize the opportunity to do so. Subordinates will be successful on6 the battlefield only if their commanders and leaders have fostered the7 necessary confidence and initiative before the battle begins.8 9 Encourage Cross-Talk. Subordinate leaders do not always require10 guidance from the commander to address a change in the situation. In some11 instances, because of their position on the battlefield, two or more12 subordinates, working together, may have the clearest view of what is13 happening and may be better suited than the commander to develop a tactical14 solution. This type of problem solving, involving direct coordination between15 subordinate elements, is critical to mission-oriented command and control. In16 addition to its obvious impact on mission accomplishment, it empowers17 subordinates to take decisive action and teaches them the value of close18 cooperation in achieving the unit’s overall purpose.19 20 Command and Lead Well Forward. The commander positions himself21 where he can best command his troop and make critical decisions to influence22 the outcome of the mission. This position is normally with the main effort to23 allow the commander to exert his leadership and to shift or retask the main24 effort as necessary. He must be far enough forward to “see” the battlefield25 using all available resources; these assets include not only visual observation26 but also radio reports and, in digitized units, information provided over digital27 systems.28 29 Plans and Orders30 31 Plans are the basis for any mission. The troop commander develops his32 concept of the operation summarizing how best to accomplish his mission33 within the scope of the commanders’ intents (two levels up). The troop34 commander uses troop-leading procedures to turn the concept into a fully35 developed plan and to prepare a concise, accurate OPORD. He assigns36 additional tasks (and outlines their purpose) for subordinate elements,37 allocates available resources, and establishes priorities to make the concept38 work.39 40 The following discussion, covering important aspects of orders41 development, serves as an introduction to the discussion of troop-leading42 procedures. The first portion focuses on the mission statement and the43 commander’s intent, which provide the doctrinal foundation for the OPORD.44 Also included are basic discussions of the three types of orders (warning45
  • 42. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-11 orders, OPORDs, and FRAGOs) used by the commander. It is important for1 the troop commander to have a thorough understanding of these elements2 because they are the building blocks for everything else that he does during3 the troop-leading process.4 5 Mission Statement6 7 The commander uses the mission statement to summarize the upcoming8 operation. This brief paragraph (sometimes a single sentence) describes the9 form of operation, the unit’s task and purpose, the actions to be taken, and the10 reasons for these actions. It is written in a format based on the five “Ws”: who11 (unit), what (tasks), when (date-time group), where (grid12 location/geographical reference for the area of operations and/or objective),13 and why (purpose). The commander must ensure that the mission is14 thoroughly understood by all leaders and soldiers two echelons below (section15 or squad). The following paragraphs cover considerations that apply in16 development of the mission statement.17 18 Tactical tasks are specific activities performed by the unit while it is19 conducting a form of tactical operation or a choice of maneuver. (NOTE: The20 title of each task can also be used as an action verb in the unit’s mission21 statement to describe actions during the operation.) Normally, a commander22 will assign one mission-essential task to each subordinate unit. Tasks should23 be definable, attainable, and measurable. Critical tasks that require specific24 tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTP) for the troop are covered in detail25 throughout this publication.26 27 A simple, clearly stated purpose improves understanding of the28 commander’s intent. It will also assist subordinate leaders in adjusting their29 tasks during execution of the mission, allowing them to stay within the30 parameters of the higher commander’s intent. The purpose should tell the31 subordinates why the troop is conducting the mission and how the team will32 operate with or provide support for other units.33 34 The commander has several options as to where in the OPORD he outlines35 his subordinates’ mission-essential tasks and purpose. His overriding36 consideration is that placement of the mission statement should assist37 subordinate leaders in understanding exactly each of the five “W” elements.38 39 Commander’s Intent40 41 The commander’s intent is a clear, concise statement of what the troop42 must do to succeed in relation to the enemy, the terrain, and the desired end43 state. It provides the link between the mission statement and the concept of the44 operation by stating the key tasks that, along with the mission, are the basis45
  • 43. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-12 for subordinates to exercise initiative when unanticipated opportunities arise1 or when the original concept of the operation no longer applies. The2 commander can also use the intent statement to explain a broader purpose for3 the operation beyond that outlined in the mission statement. The intent, which4 is mandatory in all orders, may be expressed in several “bullets” or in5 complete sentences. As with the mission, the commander must ensure that the6 intent statement is thoroughly understood by all leaders and soldiers two7 echelons below (section or squad). The following paragraphs focus on8 considerations that apply in development and presentation of the intent9 statement.10 11 The purpose of the intent at the troop level is to provide vehicle12 commanders and squad leaders with a summary of the most important details13 of what the troop is supposed to achieve during the operation. The intent14 statement must be developed and presented so they can remember this critical15 information, recognize specific situations while in contact on the battlefield,16 and act in accordance with the commander’s intent to achieve the desired end17 state.18 19 The focus of the intent is on the troop’s key tasks during the operation.20 Key tasks are those that the troop must perform to achieve the stated purpose21 of the operation, as outlined in paragraph 2 of the OPORD; they may also22 specify conditions that must be met for mission accomplishment. Key tasks23 are not tied to a specific course of action (COA); rather, they identify actions24 or conditions that are fundamental to the unit’s success. In the ever-changing25 operational environment, such as when significant opportunities present26 themselves or when the original concept or COA does not apply, subordinate27 elements use these tasks to ensure their efforts continue to support the28 commander’s intent. Examples of critical areas that key tasks may cover29 include the tempo of the operation, the desired effect of fires on the enemy,30 and areas that must be observed.31 32 At the same time, the intent statement does not specify the technique or33 method by which the unit will achieve the commander’s projected end state;34 the method is covered in the concept of the operation. Nor does the intent35 cover “acceptable risk”; risk factors are part of the commander’s guidance and36 are addressed in the evaluation of all COAs for the operation. In addition, the37 purpose addressed in the intent is not merely a restatement of the why38 (purpose) from the mission statement, which focuses on the troop’s immediate39 operation. Instead, the commander uses the intent to examine the broader40 operational context of the troop and higher missions.41 42 Combat Orders43 44 Combat orders are the means by which the troop commander receives and45 transmits information, from the earliest notification that an operation will46
  • 44. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-13 occur through the final phases of execution. These basic tools are absolutely1 critical to mission success. In a tactical situation, the commander will receive2 the troop’s mission from higher in the form of written or digital (sent on3 FBCB2) operation order (OPORD) and fragmentary order (FRAGO). The4 troop commander and subordinate leaders will work with combat orders on a5 daily basis; obviously, they must have precise knowledge of the correct format6 for each type. At the same time, they must ensure that every soldier in the7 troop understands how to receive and respond to the various types of orders.8 Because of these requirements, the commander must take every opportunity to9 train the troop in the use of combat orders. The skills associated with orders10 development and dissemination are highly perishable; they can be lost without11 constant, realistic practice.12 13 Warning Orders (WO). During the planning phase of an operation,14 commanders use warning orders as a shorthand method of alerting their15 subordinate leaders. Warning orders also initiate the commander’s most16 valuable time management tool, the parallel planning process. The troop17 commander usually sends a series of warning orders to his subordinate leaders18 to help them prepare for new missions. The directions and guidelines in the19 warning order allow subordinates to begin their own planning and preparation20 activities.21 22 The content of warning orders is based on two major variables:23 information about the upcoming operation that is available to the troop from24 the brigade/squadron and what the troop commander ultimately wants to25 achieve by issuing the warning order (what he wants his subordinates to do26 with the information). The commander normally issues his warning orders27 either as he receives additional orders from the task force or as he completes28 his own analysis of the situation.29 30 In addition to alerting the unit to the upcoming operation, warning orders31 allow the commander to put out tactical information incrementally and,32 ultimately, to shorten the length of the actual OPORD. In the example shown33 in Figure 2-1, the commander uses three warning orders to issue information34 that otherwise would make up paragraphs 1 and 2 and most of paragraph 3 in35 the OPORD. As a result, when he issues the OPORD, he can simply review36 previously issued information or brief the changes or earlier omissions. He37 will then have more time to concentrate on visualizing his concept of the fight38 for his subordinates.39 40 Figure 2-1 summarizes an example of how the troop commander might41 use a series of warning orders both to alert the troop to an upcoming operation42 and to provide tactical information and initial planning guidance. The left-43 hand column lists actions the commander takes before issuing each of the44 three warning orders in the example. The center column describes specific45
  • 45. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-14 elements included in each warning order, with the right-hand column1 outlining the commander’s purpose for each order.2 3 NOTE: The numbering system used in the Figure 2-1 (WO #1, #2, and #3)4 recurs in the discussion of troop-leading procedures to explain how5 warning orders are used at various phases of the troop-leading6 process.7 8 TROOP COMMANDER’S ACTION POSSIBLE CONTENT OF WARNING ORDER COMMANDER’S PURPOSE Receive the brigade/squadron warning order Warning order #1 covers the following: • Security plan. • Movement plan. • Task organization. • Tentative timeline. • Standard drills to be rehearsed. • Prepare platoons for movement to the tactical assembly area. • Obtain map sheets. • Specify troop task organization. Conduct METT-TC analysis Warning order #2 covers the following: • Friendly situation. • Enemy situation. • Terrain analysis. • Troop mission. • Initiate platoon- level mission analysis. • Initiate generic rehearsals (drill- and task-related). • Prepare for combat. Develop and analyze COAs Warning order #3 covers the following: • Commander’s intent. • Concept of the operation. • COA analysis/selection. • Concept of fires. • Subordinate unit tasks and purposes. • R&S guidance. • Updated SITEMP/ draft graphics. • Initiate platoon- level COA development. • Identify platoon- level reconnaissance requirements. • Direct leader’s reconnaissance. • Prepare for combat. Figure 2-1. Commander’s use of multiple warning orders.9
  • 46. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-15 Operation Order (OPORD). When time and information are available,1 the troop commander will normally issue a complete OPORD as part of his2 troop-leading procedures. As noted, he does not need to repeat information3 covered previously in his warning orders. The commander may also issue an4 execution matrix, either to supplement the OPORD or as a tool to aid in the5 execution of the mission; however, the matrix order does not replace a five-6 paragraph OPORD.7 8 Fragmentary Order (FRAGO). The FRAGO is a brief oral or written9 order that can serve any of the following purposes:10 • Implement timely changes to existing orders.11 • Provide pertinent extracts from more detailed orders.12 • Provide instructions until a detailed order is developed.13 • Provide specific instructions to subordinates who do not require a14 complete order.15 A written FRAGO follows the five-paragraph OPORD structure; however,16 it includes only the information required for subordinates to accomplish their17 mission. To enhance understanding of voice FRAGOs, digitally equipped18 units can quickly develop hasty graphics and transmit digital overlays.19 20 During the execution of an operation, FRAGOs are the medium of battle21 command. The troop commander uses them to communicate changes in the22 enemy or friendly situation and to retask his subordinate elements based on23 changes in the situation (see Figure 2-2). The FRAGO normally includes the24 following information:25 • Updated enemy or friendly situation.26 • Changes to troop or platoon tasks and/or purposes.27 • Changes to the scheme of maneuver.28 • Specific instructions as necessary.29 30 31
  • 47. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-16 1 TYPE/PURPOSE OF ORDER RADIO TRANSMISSION Alert “GUIDONS, THIS IS BLACK 6; FRAGO FOLLOWS.” Situation “J-STARS REPORTS, “TEN BMPs, AND SUPPORTING VEHICLES VICINITY CP 17, MOVING EAST TOWARD CP 11.” Mission “WE WILL CONTINUE TO SCREEN AND GAIN CONTACT WITH THE ENEMY VICINITY CP 17 AND CONDUCT A SECURITY DRILL FROM PL BLUE TO PL RED AND THE TASK FORCE WHICH IS MOVING TO OUR SOUTH.” Intent “I WANT FA FIRES TO INITIALLY INTERDICT AND HARRASS THE ENEMY’S MOVEMENT VIC OF NAI 5.” “I WANT TO MAINTAIN CONTACT WITH RED AND I WANT WHITE TO ASSIST THE XO IN CONDUCTING RECON HAND OVER WITH THE TASK FORCE SCOUTS.” “I THEN WANT THE STRIKERS TO ASSIST IN THE DESTUCTION OF THE ENEMY BY ATTACKING HIM WITH PRECISION FIRES.” Tasks to subordinate units “RED AND WHITE, CONDUCT SECURITY DRILLS IOT MAINTAIN CONTACT AND REPOSITION IN SECTOR.” “RED, FIRE TAI 5 ONCE TARGET HITS TRIGGER.” “WHITE SET SUBSEQUENT POSITIONS ALONG PL GREEN ASSUME CONTACTS FOR RED.” “BLACK 5, CONDUCT INITIAL RECON HAND OVER COORDINATION, PLAN TO RPOL ON LANES TIN AND COPPER.” “REDLEG, MOVE TO A POSITION VICINITY CP 8 FROM WHICH TO DESIGNATE FIRES TO ASSIST THE TASK FORCE.” Coordinating instructions “I WANT TO INITIATE FIRES WHEN FIVE OR SIX VEHICLES HAVE CROSSED PL ABRAMS.” “BEGIN THE SECURITY DRILL WHEN ENEMY IS AT CP 17 OR IF THE ENEMY BEGINS MOVEMENT SOUTH TOWARD CP 10.” CSS “TROOP TRAINS MOVE TO CP 4.” Command and signal “I WILL BE WITH RED.” Acknowledgment “ACKNOWLEDGE. OVER.” Figure 2-2. Example troop FRAGO.2 3
  • 48. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-17 Troop-leading Procedures1 2 Troop-leading procedures are the basis of the dynamic process (see Figure3 2-3) by which units develop plans and orders at every level of leadership. The4 process, although discussed here with the eight steps in traditional order, is not5 rigid, and the steps are not necessarily sequential. The tasks involved in some6 steps (such as initiate movement, issue the warning order, and conduct7 reconnaissance) may recur several times during the process. Although listed8 as the last step, activities associated with supervising and refining the plan and9 other preparations occur throughout troop leading. Conversely, in some10 situations, time constraints and other factors may prevent leaders from11 conducting steps as thoroughly as they would like.12 13 Regardless of the time available, leaders must always remember this14 principle: “See the terrain, see the enemy, see yourself.” Only after they view15 and evaluate the terrain and the enemy can they determine what their own16 actions should be in that given situation. They update this visualization17 continuously throughout the troop-leading process, basing this new “picture”18 of the battlefield on their own refinements to the plan, additional information19 from the task force and other sources, or developments in the reconnaissance20 and security fight.21 22 Troop-leading procedures begin when the leader receives the first23 indication of an upcoming operation (often a warning order from higher24 headquarters) and continue throughout the planning, preparation, and25 execution phases of the mission. Starting as the first bit of information26 becomes available allows the leader to maximize the available planning time.27 28 The warning order is the most important time-management tool the29 commander has and is also his most effective means of delegating30 responsibility. In addition, by immediately passing information to subordinate31 leaders through the use of warning orders, he can ensure that they develop32 their plans concurrently with his. Under no circumstances should leaders33 delay the start of the troop-leading process, even if initial information is34 incomplete or vague.35 36 NOTE: The following discussion provides a step-by-step overview of troop-37 leading procedures. Figure 2-3 illustrates the process, along with38 some of the considerations and procedures involved in the eight39 steps.40 41 42
  • 49. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-18 1 Figure 2-3. Troop-leading procedures and the military decision-making2 process.3 4 5 Step 1 - Receive and Analyze the Mission6 7 This step normally begins with the receipt of an initial warning, although8 it may begin when the commander receives the OPORD. If he receives an9 OPORD, he will normally be required to give a confirmation brief to his10 commander to ensure that he understands the higher commander’s concept of11 the operation and his intent for the troop. The troop commander must also, as12 necessary, obtain clarification of the information from the higher headquarters13 and conduct initial coordination with other units.14 15
  • 50. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-19 Collect Initial Information. Although mission analysis is continuously1 refined throughout the troop-leading process, the troop commander’s initial2 analysis is normally based only on the initial warning order. During this step,3 the commander conducts his initial METT-TC analysis, collecting information4 about the terrain and the friendly and enemy situations. Additionally, he5 conducts his initial time analysis, develops his initial security plan, and issues6 an initial warning order to provide guidance and planning focus for his7 subordinates.8 9 NOTE: The initial analysis is normally conducted as quickly as possible to10 allow the commander to issue the initial warning order in a timely11 manner. He then conducts a more detailed METT-TC analysis after12 the initial warning order is put out.13 14 Issue the Initial Warning Order (Warning Order #1). The step begins15 with the commander and his subordinate leaders gathering information about16 enemy and friendly forces, terrain, and weather as they prepare to receive the17 brigade/squadron plan. They should focus on available information of all18 types: details provided in the warning order; terrain and weather data; their19 knowledge of the enemy’s doctrine. As the brigade/squadron develops its20 plans, the troop commander remains proactive, contacting the TOC to obtain21 information, such as updated SITEMPs and graphics, as it becomes available.22 With each piece of information, he and his leaders continue to build and refine23 the troop plan. (NOTE: In many instances, the tactical situation will still be24 vague because the reconnaissance and security plan has not been executed,25 because the squadron or brigade has not received its orders, or because the26 unit has just arrived in the area of operations.)27 28 Upon receipt of the initial warning order, the commander immediately29 passes on the information to the troop’s subordinate leaders. At a minimum,30 the initial troop warning order should include the following:31 32 • Enemy situation as stated in the OPORD (if available).33 • Friendly situation (usually the type of operation, higher unit mission34 statement, task organization, and boundaries).35 • Movement instructions (such as routes to the tactical assembly area,36 movement times, and formations).37 • Coordinating instructions, including an initial timeline, map38 requirements, and an initial security plan. (NOTE: The security plan39 should cover initial movement to and occupation of the assembly area40 and address the readiness condition (REDCON) levels applicable at41 various times during the planning and preparation phases.)42 43 Analyze the Mission. The commander conducts mission analysis using44 the factors of METT-TC: mission, enemy, terrain (and weather), troops, time45
  • 51. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-20 available, and civilian considerations. Mission analysis is a continuous1 process. The commander constantly receives information (during the planning2 phase, or en route to the reconnaissance objective) and must decide if the3 information affects his mission. If it does, he then decides how to adjust his4 plan to meet this new situation. METT-TC is not necessarily analyzed5 sequentially. How and when the commander analyzes each factor depends on6 when information is made available to him. The following discussion covers7 the six factors of METT-TC in detail.8 9 NOTE: The acronym METT-TC is a common mnemonic device for the10 factors of mission analysis; the following discussion presents these11 elements in the traditional order (mission, enemy, terrain, troops,12 time available, and civilian considerations). Mission is always the13 first factor to be analyzed. The second factor in the analysis,14 however, should be terrain rather than the enemy. By analyzing the15 terrain first, the leader gains a clear picture of factors that influence16 the enemy situation; this enables him to develop a better17 understanding of the enemy’s capabilities and limitations.18 19 Mission analysis. After receiving an essential task and purpose, either in20 a warning order or the OPORD, the commander can begin the analysis of his21 own mission. He may use a refined product, such the modified combined22 obstacle overlay (MCOO) and/or the SITEMP (if available), to better23 visualize the interrelationships of the terrain, the enemy, and friendly forces.24 His goal in this analysis is to clarify what the unit is to accomplish, why the25 unit is to accomplish it, and what COAs it will take to achieve its overall26 purpose.27 28 Analysis of higher unit mission and intent. Leaders at every echelon must29 have a clear understanding of the intent and concept of operation of the30 commander two levels higher. For additional details on intent and concept,31 refer to the discussion of mission statements and commander’s intent earlier in32 this chapter.33 34 Analysis of own mission. Once he understands the operation two levels35 up, the commander can analyze the troop mission. Key considerations in this36 analysis include the following:37 • Purpose. Identify the troop’s purpose. Determine how the troop’s38 purpose relates to the purposes of the brigade and/or its other troops in39 the squadron and attached elements.40 • Specified tasks. What tasks (such as reconnoiter a route or assist a41 passage of lines) does the OPORD specify for the troop to42 accomplish?43 • Implied tasks. What tasks not specified in the OPORD must the troop44 execute to successfully accomplish its specified tasks?45
  • 52. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-21 • Essential tasks. What essential tasks specified in the OPORD must be1 accomplished for mission success? Are any implied tasks essential?2 What specific results must the team achieve in terms of the terrain and3 the enemy and/or friendly forces?4 • Limitations. What limitations does the OPORD place on the troop’s5 freedom of action?6 NOTE: There are two types of limitations: constraints and restrictions.7 Constraints dictate actions that the unit must take (such as retain8 one platoon in reserve). Restrictions specify actions or areas from9 which the unit is prohibited (such as no direct fires beyond PHASE10 LINE DOG).11 12 Restated mission. The commander writes his restated mission, ensuring13 that it includes the five “W” elements: who, what, when, where, and why. If14 the unit must accomplish more than one essential task, he lists them as on-15 order missions in the order in which they will occur. For an in-depth16 discussion of the mission statement and its components, refer to the discussion17 earlier in this chapter.18 19 Enemy analysis. The following paragraphs examine areas the commander20 should cover in his analysis of the enemy.21 22 Doctrinal analysis. This step normally begins with a study of the enemy’s23 tactical doctrine, his weapons and equipment, and his supporting battlefield24 functional systems. The result of this evaluation is a doctrinal template25 illustrating how the enemy force might look and act without the effects of26 weather and terrain (see Figure 2-4). Early in the planning process, the27 commander reviews the enemy’s doctrine. He looks at specific enemy actions28 during a given operation (such as defense out of contact, security zone29 defense, or movement to contact). It is not enough simply to know the number30 and types of vehicles the enemy has. The commander and his subordinate31 leaders must thoroughly understand when, where, and how the enemy will use32 all assets down to squad level.33 34 Composition (order of battle). Determine the number and types of threat35 vehicles and equipment in the troop’s area of operations. Analyze how the36 enemy organizes for combat, reviewing such areas as doctrinal formations and37 distances between units. Where does the enemy place his tanks and PCs38 within a formation or within a defense? Where and how many dismounted39 infantrymen and hand-held antitank systems does the enemy have, and how40 will he employ them? What CS and CSS assets does he have, where are they41 located, and how will he use them? How, when, and where does he use his42 reserve?43
  • 53. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-22 1 Figure 2-4. Doctrinal template for a Motorized Infantry Company (MIC) defense.2 3 4 Capabilities. Study the planning ranges for each threat weapon system.5 Assess the impact of doctrinal march rates and timelines. (NOTE: One6 technique is to have these capabilities listed in the leader’s books of the7 troop’s key subordinate elements.)8 9 Doctrinal objectives. Based on the expected threat mission, identify the10 enemy’s projected doctrinal objectives. In doctrinal terms, why will he11 conduct this type of operation? Is the enemy oriented on the terrain (for12 example, a forward detachment), on his own force (such as an advance guard),13 or on friendly forces (as in a security zone)? What effect will this have on the14 way the enemy fights?15 16
  • 54. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-23 Anticipated enemy COAs. To identify potential enemy COAs, the1 commander weighs the results of his initial analysis of terrain and weather2 against the enemy’s composition, capabilities, and doctrinal objectives. The3 end product is a SITEMP that depicts graphically how he believes the enemy4 will fight under the specific conditions expected on the battlefield.5 6 The S2 should have developed his own SITEMP at this point in the troop-7 leading process. The troop commander should obtain a copy to assist him in8 developing the threat COAs; he should not develop the troop SITEMP9 independently of the S2’s product. If there are differences between the troop10 and higher products, he must resolve them before continuing with his analysis11 of the enemy.12 13 The commander must apply his own analysis of the specific force the14 troop will face to the existing product. As an example, the S2’s SITEMP15 might identify the location of MRPs on the objective area and provide generic16 weapons range lines. The commander would apply his knowledge of the17 enemy and terrain to identify individual vehicle positions and, based on18 intervisibility lines around the objective area, to determine when and where19 enemy vehicles can engage the troop.20 21 Factors influencing COAs. The following paragraphs examine key22 factors the commander should consider in refining (or developing) an accurate23 SITEMP for the enemy’s likely COAs.24 25 • Mission. Based on threat doctrine and knowledge of the situation,26 determine what the enemy’s likely mission will be. Why is the enemy27 conducting this operation? Identify his likely task or objective. Is he28 trying to protect another threat unit, deceive friendly forces, allow29 another unit to bypass them, or prevent them from seizing terrain? Is30 the operation oriented on the terrain, on the enemy force, or on31 friendly forces? Specifically, what key terrain, enemy force, or32 friendly element is involved? How will this affect the enemy?33 34 • Objectives. Based on the SITEMP and the projected threat mission,35 identify the enemy’s march objectives (offense) or the terrain or force36 he intends to protect (defense).37 38 • Avenues of approach. Reanalyze the avenues of approach. If the39 enemy is attacking, which avenues will he use to reach his objectives40 in executing his likely COAs? How will terrain affect his speed and41 formations? How will he use the key terrain and locations with clear42 observation and fields of fire during the fight? Which avenues should43 friendly forces deny him or divert him from? If the enemy is in the44
  • 55. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-24 defense, which avenues provide the most direct or fastest access to the1 terrain the enemy is defending or to the enemy force itself? How will2 that affect positioning of the enemy forces? From the enemy3 perspective, what is the most dangerous approach for friendly units4 (this is where he may weight his effort)?5 6 • Known enemy locations. Plot all known enemy positions in the task7 force area of operations (if not already provided on the S2’s SITEMP).8 9 • Assumed enemy locations. In planning an attack on an objective,10 identify all threat platoons, down to the vehicle level, in the troop area11 of interest; plot their locations on applicable templates. Using the S2’s12 SITEMP as a framework, consider the situation from the enemy13 commander’s perspective. Given his mission, where will he place14 vehicles in his position? How will he employ them? If it becomes15 necessary, where will he reposition his forces? Use the MCOO to16 assist in identifying such features as observation, fields of fires, and17 maneuver space. One technique is to draw a line representing the18 maximum engagement range for each enemy weapon system in the19 troop’s area of interest based on the fields of fire. In planning a screen20 operation, consider where the threat commander will deploy his21 reconnaissance, where he will position overwatch elements, and where22 he will move to observe avenues of approach to avoid friendly23 observation.24 25 • Boundaries, CPs, and reserves. Identify likely boundaries, seams, or26 time separations between platoon-, troop-, and battalion-size elements.27 Determine the location of the enemy’s CPs and other command and28 control assets. Calculate the time required for reserves or reinforcing29 elements to influence the battle based on their initial positions.30 31 • Engineer obstacles and fortifications. Plot the likely locations of32 obstacles and fortifications based on the enemy’s weapons ranges,33 fields of fires, and engineering capabilities.34 35 Terrain and weather analysis. In this step of mission analysis, the36 commander focuses not only on the impact of terrain and weather on the troop37 and other friendly forces, but also on how they will affect enemy operations.38 39 Terrain Analysis. Normally, the task force staff will provide the troop40 with a MCOO, which depicts the physical effects of the battlefield on military41 operations. Ideally, the MCOO is developed early in the troop-leading process42
  • 56. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-25 to allow leaders at all levels to take advantage of the information. In1 developing this product, the task force staff applies the five military aspects of2 terrain, known as OCOKA. These factors, summarized later in this3 discussion, are the following:4 5 • Observation and fields of fire.6 • Cover and concealment.7 • Obstacles.8 • Key terrain.9 • Avenues of approach.10 11 NOTE: The acronym OCOKA is a common mnemonic device for the12 military aspects of terrain. The following discussion presents these13 factors in the traditional order as listed in the previous paragraph;14 however, leaders should evaluate them in the order that best supports15 their terrain analysis.16 17 Because the MCOO is focused at the brigade/squadron level, the troop18 commander must further refine it using considerations that are applicable at19 his level. As noted, key terrain for the brigade may not be as critical to the20 battalion and vice versa. For example, an intervisibility line near an objective21 area may be key terrain for an assault force within a company, but may not be22 considered as key by the BRT target acquisition operation. In the absence of a23 task force MCOO, the troop commander can develop his own product.24 25 The commander normally must prioritize his analysis of the terrain based26 on time constraints that influence orders development at the troop level. For27 example, in the conduct of an assault, his priority may be the area around the28 objective, followed by analysis of the troop’s specific axis leading to the29 objective. Time permitting, he might then analyze the rest of the task force30 area of operations.31 32 The following discussion examines OCOKA in detail.33 34 Observation and fields of fire. The commander must determine what35 locations along each avenue of approach provide clear observation and fields36 of fire for both the attacker and the defender. He analyzes the area37 surrounding key terrain, objectives, and obstacles. He locates intervisibility38 lines (terrain that allows observation from one point to another) and assesses39 the ability of the attacking force to overwatch or support (with direct fire) the40 movement of its elements.41 42 In analyzing fields of fire, the commander focuses on the ability of43 friendly and enemy units to cover terrain with direct fires from known or44
  • 57. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-26 likely positions. In addition, he must identify positions that afford clear1 observation, allowing them to employ indirect fires effectively.2 3 Cover and concealment. The commander looks at the terrain, foliage,4 structures, and other features on the avenues of approach to identify sites that5 offer cover and concealment. In a security mission, AT weapon and vehicle6 positions must be both lethal and survivable, with effective cover and7 concealment just as vital as clear fields of fire.8 9 Obstacles. In analyzing the terrain, the commander first identifies existing10 and reinforcing obstacles that may limit mobility (affecting such features as11 objectives, avenues of approach, and mobility corridors) and affect the troop’s12 counter mobility effort.13 14 Existing obstacles include, but are not limited to, the following:15 16 • Gullies, ravines, gaps, and ditches over 3 meters wide.17 • Streams, rivers, and canals over 1 meter deep.18 • Mountains or hills with a slope in excess of 60 percent.19 • Lakes, swamps, and marshes over 1 meter deep.20 • Tree stumps and large rocks over 18 inches high.21 • Forests or jungles with trees 8 inches or more in diameter and with less22 than 4 meters of space between trees.23 • Man-made existing obstacles, including built-up areas such as towns,24 cities, or railroad embankments.25 26 Reinforcing obstacles include, but are not limited to, the following:27 • Minefields (conventional and situational).28 • Antitank ditches.29 • Road craters.30 • Abatises and log cribs.31 • Wire obstacles.32 • Infantry strongpoints.33 34 Based on the degree of obstruction posed by obstacles, terrain is further35 classified in one of the following categories:36 37 • Unrestricted. This is terrain free of any restriction to movement; no38 actions are required to enhance mobility. For armored and mechanized39 forces, unrestricted terrain is typically flat or moderately sloped, with40
  • 58. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-27 scattered or widely spaced obstacles such as trees or rocks. This type1 of terrain generally allows wide maneuver and offers unlimited travel2 over well-developed road networks.3 4 • Restricted. This terrain hinders movement to some degree. Little5 effort is needed to enhance mobility, but units may have to zigzag or6 make frequent detours. They may have difficulty maintaining optimum7 speed, moving in some types of combat formations, or transitioning8 from one formation to another. For armor and mechanized forces,9 restricted terrain typically encompasses moderate to steep slopes10 and/or moderate to dense spacing of obstacles such as trees, rocks, or11 buildings. Swamps and rugged ground are examples of restricted12 terrain for dismounted infantry forces. Logistical or rear area13 movement may be hampered by poorly developed road systems.14 15 • Severely restricted. This terrain severely hinders or slows movement16 in combat formations unless some effort is made to enhance mobility.17 It may require commitment of engineer forces to improve mobility or18 deviation from doctrinal tactics, such as using a column rather than a19 line formation or moving at speeds much lower than otherwise20 preferred. For armor and mechanized forces, steep slopes, densely21 spaced obstacles, and/or the virtual absence of a developed road22 system typically characterize severely restricted terrain.23 24 Friendly and enemy elements will usually take advantage of unrestricted25 terrain in situations requiring rapid movement. In other instances, such as26 when security is the paramount concern, they may move in more restricted27 terrain, which may provide more cover and concealment.28 29 Key terrain. Key terrain is any location or area whose seizure, retention, or30 control affords a marked advantage to either combatant. As an example, a31 prominent hilltop overlooking an avenue of approach may or may not be key32 terrain. Even if the hill offers clear observation and fields of fire, it will be of33 no marked advantage to the unit that controls it if the opposition can easily34 bypass it on another avenue of approach. On the other hand, if the hilltop can35 influence the area through which a force must pass regardless of which avenue36 of approach it uses, the unit that controls the higher terrain has a definite37 advantage.38 39 Designation of an area as key terrain depends largely on the characteristics40 of the avenue of approach (such as the width or length and the restrictiveness41 of terrain along the avenue) and the size of the unit required controlling it.42 Other contributing factors include maneuver space, fields of fire, and cover43 and concealment afforded by the key terrain itself. For example, an area where44
  • 59. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-28 several trails converge may be key terrain for a troop, whereas an area in1 which several battalion-size avenues of approach join may prove key for a2 brigade.3 4 At the troop level, the commander must assess what terrain is key to his5 mission accomplishment. An example of key terrain for a troop conducting a6 zone reconnaissance could be a small hill or tree line that overlooks the7 enemy’s reverse slope defense. Securing this area may be critical in8 establishing a support by fire position to protect the breach force.9 10 The troop commander must also identify decisive terrain, which is key11 terrain that will have an extraordinary impact on the mission. Decisive terrain12 is relatively rare; it will not be present in every situation. By designating13 terrain as decisive, the commander recognizes that seizing and/or retaining it14 is an absolute requirement for successful accomplishment of the mission.15 16 Figure 2-5 illustrates a sample MCOO with restricted terrain, avenues of17 approach, key terrain, and graphic control measures.18 19 Avenues of approach. These are areas through which a unit can maneuver.20 The definition of an avenue of approach is an area that provides sufficient21 ease of movement and enough width (for dispersion) to allow passage of a22 force large enough to significantly affect the outcome of the battle. In turn,23 avenues of approach are composed of mobility corridors, which are areas24 through which the force will be canalized by terrain features and constrictions.25 In making his terrain analysis, the troop commander can use the following26 process to identify avenues of approach:27 28 • Identify mobility corridors.29 • Categorize each corridor by the size or type of force it will30 accommodate.31 • Group mobility corridors to form avenues of approach.32 33 The commander must identify mounted, dismounted, and air avenues of34 approach within the sector or area of operations. Mounted forces may move35 on avenues along unrestricted or restricted terrain (or both). Dismounted36 avenues and avenues used by reconnaissance elements normally include37 restricted terrain and, at times, severely restricted terrain. In addition, the38 terrain analysis must identify avenues of approach for both friendly and39 enemy units.40 41 After identifying avenues of approach, the commander must evaluate each42 avenue. He determines the size and/or type of force that could use the avenue43 and evaluates the terrain that the avenue traverses as well as the terrain that44 bounds or otherwise influences it.45 46
  • 60. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-29 1 Figure 2-5. MCOO showing restricted terrain, avenues of approach, and key2 terrain.3 4 Weather analysis. Consideration of the effects of weather conditions is an5 essential part of the mission analysis. The commander should review the6 results of his terrain analysis and determine the impact of the following factors7 on terrain, personnel, and equipment and on the projected friendly and enemy8 COAs.9 10 Light data. At what times are beginning of morning nautical twilight11 (BMNT), sunrise, sunset, end of evening nautical twilight (EENT), moonrise,12 and moonset? Is the sun to the back of friendly forces or the enemy? What13 effect will this have on either force’s ability to see? Will friendly forces have14 to remove or install driver’s night periscopes during movement? When during15
  • 61. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-30 the operation will they have to use night vision goggles? What effect will1 long periods of darkness (such as during winter nights) have on soldiers’2 ability to stay awake and alert?3 4 Precipitation. How will precipitation affect the terrain along each avenue5 of approach? Will some restricted terrain become severely restricted if it rains6 or snows? Will moist air cause foggy conditions? Will lack of precipitation7 cause extremely dusty conditions? How will fog, dust, or stormy conditions8 affect visibility?9 10 Temperature. What will the temperature be during the operation and what11 effect will this have on soldiers? Will they be able to sustain a long fight in12 extreme conditions? Will the ground freeze or thaw during the operation?13 What effect will this have on trafficability? How will extreme heat or cold14 affect the optical images in the vehicle sights? Are temperature dispersions15 favorable for the use of smoke or chemicals?16 17 Wind speed and direction. What is the expected wind speed and direction18 during the operation? What effect will wind conditions have on use of smoke,19 flares, or chemical agents? Will the wind affect dust, fog, and other battlefield20 conditions?21 22 Visibility. How will weather conditions (including light conditions,23 precipitation, temperature, and wind speed and direction) affect visibility?24 Will friendly forces have the sun in their eyes? Will the wind blow dust or25 smoke away from the route of march (making it easier to see) or back toward26 friendly forces? Under such conditions, what is the maximum observation27 range? How will that range affect the enemy?28 29 Troop analysis (available assets). Analyze the combat readiness of30 soldiers and equipment task organized to the troop, including attachments.31 Direct subordinate leaders to outline the readiness status of their elements; if32 possible, inspect each element to verify readiness. Compile updates of each33 vehicle’s maintenance, fuel, ammunition, and personnel status. Determine the34 anticipated readiness status, as of the time the operation is to start, of vehicles35 and equipment that are currently nonmission-capable (NMC).36 37 Time analysis. Identify the specific and implied times governing actions38 that must occur throughout the planning, preparation, and execution phases of39 the operation. Assess the impact of limited visibility conditions (including40 darkness) on the troop-leading process and other time-sensitive preparations41 for the troop and its subordinate elements. (NOTE: Figure 2-6 illustrates a42 method of analyzing usable light and limited light conditions.) Analyze the43 timing for the execution phase in terms of the terrain and enemy and friendly44 forces. Update previous timelines, listing all events that affect the troop and45 all subordinate elements.46
  • 62. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-31 1 Figure 2-6. Use of time analysis to assess light conditions for an operation.2 3 4 Analysis of civilian considerations. Identify any civilian considerations5 that may affect the troop mission. These factors may include refugees,6 humanitarian assistance requirements, or specific considerations related to the7 applicable rules of engagement (ROE) and/or rules of interaction (ROI).8 9 Step 2 - Issue the Warning Order (Warning Order #2)10 Based on his restated mission and the information compiled thus far in the11 troop-leading process, the commander issues as detailed a warning order as12 possible. The troop warning order, usually given orally, allows subordinate13 units to continue with the planning and preparation activities that started with14 the initial warning order. The commander should not delay issuing the order15 while awaiting additional information; likewise, he should not withhold16 needed information, even if it is somewhat incomplete. He can send updates17 as needed using subsequent warning orders. As a minimum, the troop18 warning order should include the elements outlined in the following19 paragraphs.20 21 Situation (Enemy and Friendly). At this point in the troop-leading22 process, the commander has normally had time to conduct a detailed mission23 analysis. The goal of the warning order is to allow his subordinates to start24 their own mission analysis. Provide a layout of the terrain using the five25 military aspects of terrain (if this was not done earlier). Include results of the26 enemy analysis. Give the intent and mission statements of the commander27
  • 63. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-32 two levels up. Brief the task organization and the higher concept of the1 operation. Allow subordinates to copy the draft SITEMP, if available, and all2 available operational graphics.3 4 Mission. Give the restated troop mission.5 6 Coordinating Instructions. Provide any instructions that will allow for7 proactive planning and preparation, including the commander’s8 reconnaissance guidance. As part of the coordinating instructions, the9 commander may find it useful to provide a timeline that includes an10 assessment of the troop-leading procedures conducted at the task force, troop,11 and platoon levels as a means of deconflicting leader responsibilities at each12 level. In addition, specify what types of mission-specific rehearsals (for13 example, covering actions on contact, dismounted actions on the14 reconnaissance objective, or support by fire) that you expect subordinate units15 to conduct within the framework of their timelines.16 17 Service Support. Address any changes to the support requirements (such18 as the addition of an engineer platoon) for which the XO, 1SG, or subordinate19 leaders may have to plan.20 21 Step 3 - Make a Tentative Plan22 SITEMP Updates. The commander continues to update his SITEMP23 using refined versions of the S2’s SITEMP and the intelligence annex from24 the higher OPORD (both should be available by this time). He can use25 additional information, including results of the troop’s reconnaissance and of26 supporting reconnaissance and security operations (i.e., the division cavalry27 squadron), as it becomes available during the troop-leading process.28 29 COA Development Procedures. The purpose of COA development is30 simple: to determine one or more ways to achieve the mission, in most cases31 by applying the troop’s assets to answer the commander’s CCIR to allow him32 to defeat enemy at the decisive point in the battle. The commander makes33 each COA as detailed as necessary to describe clearly how he plans to use his34 forces to achieve the unit’s tasks and purpose. He focuses on the actions the35 unit must take at the decisive point.36 There are normally six steps in COA development:37 • Step 1. Analyze relative combat power.38 • Step 2. Generate options.39 • Step 3. Array initial forces.40 • Step 4. Develop schemes of maneuver.41 • Step 5. Assign headquarters.42 • Step 6. Prepare COA statements and sketches.43
  • 64. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-33 When time permits, the commander should develop several COAs for the1 troop. The spectrum of COAs should provide enough flexibility, and cover2 enough different possible situations, to achieve the unit purpose against each3 likely enemy COA that was identified previously in the troop-leading process.4 In developing COAs, the commander must ensure they meet the following5 criteria:6 7 • Suitability. Each COA must enable the troop to accomplish its8 mission while complying with the higher unit order.9 • Feasibility. The troop must have the capability to successfully10 accomplish the COA in terms of available time, space, and resources.11 • Acceptability. The advantage gained by executing the COA must12 justify the cost in manpower and material resources.13 • Distinguishability. Each COA must be sufficiently different from the14 others to justify full development and consideration.15 • Completeness. Development of the COA must cover the operational16 factors of who, what, when, where, and how.17 18 Analysis of COAs. After developing the COAs, the commander must19 analyze them to confirm that the criteria for valid COAs are met, to determine20 the advantages and disadvantages of each COA, and to visualize the flow of21 the operation. Typically, he war-games each friendly COA against each likely22 enemy COA. If time is limited, he may choose to employ the box technique23 of war-gaming, analyzing only the most critical event in each friendly COA24 against the corresponding enemy action. (NOTE: If the commander uses this25 technique, he must be prepared to conduct more detailed war-gaming later to26 complete the plan.)27 28 COA Comparison. After war-gaming the COAs, the commander must29 compare them, weighing the specific advantages, disadvantages, strengths,30 and weaknesses of each course as noted during the war game. These31 attributes may pertain to the accomplishment of the troop purpose, the use of32 terrain, the identification and subsequent hand over of the enemy, or any other33 aspect of the operation that the commander believes is important.34 35 The commander uses these factors as his frame of reference in tentatively36 selecting the best available COA. He makes the final selection of a COA37 (during completion of the plan) based on this comparison, taking into account38 results of the troop’s reconnaissance and the reconnaissance and security39 operations of the division and/or brigade.40 41 Tentative Plan Warning Order (Warning Order #3). The commander42 may use a warning order to outline his tentative plan for subordinates and to43 issue instructions for reconnaissance and movement (as necessary). The order44 should clearly and briefly cover key aspects of the tentative plan: the purpose45
  • 65. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-34 and result (end state) of the operation; the troop’s essential tasks; when the1 operation begins; the area of operations; the scheme of maneuver; and2 subordinate unit tasks and purposes.3 4 In describing his concept, the commander should emphasize that the plan5 remains generally unrefined, with many of the details to be clarified through6 additional war-gaming and issued in the OPORD. This warning order is7 important because it allows subordinates to see how the commander is8 developing the plan; it allows them to begin (or continue) mission analysis9 based on their elements’ assigned tasks and purposes.10 11 Step 4 - Initiate Movement12 The commander initiates any movement that is necessary to continue13 preparations or to posture the unit for the operation. This may include14 movement to an assembly area or attack position; movement of supporting15 elements (i.e., mortars, GSR, etc); or movement to compute time-distance16 factors for the unit’s mission.17 18 Step 5 – Conduct Leader’s Reconnaissance19 This step covers the necessary reconnaissance that allows the commander20 to refine the unit’s plan. Even if the troop commander has made a leader’s21 reconnaissance with the higher commander and staff at some point during22 troop-leading procedures, he should still conduct a reconnaissance of his own23 with the troop’s subordinate leaders. This will allow them to see as much of24 the terrain as possible; it should also help each leader to visualize the25 projected plan, and any related branch plans, more clearly.26 27 At the troop level, the leader’s reconnaissance may include movement to28 or beyond the line of departure (LD) or a drive from the forward edge of the29 battle area (FEBA) back to and through the security zone along likely enemy30 routes. If possible, the commander should select a vantage point that provides31 the group with the best possible view of the area of operation.32 33 In addition to the leader’s reconnaissance, the troop may conduct more34 detailed reconnaissance operations. Examples include surveillance of an area35 by TUAVs, SIGINT scans by PROPHET to determine military activities in36 zone, establishment of GSR OPs to gain additional information. The nature of37 the reconnaissance, including what it covers and how long it lasts, depends on38 the tactical situation and time available. The commander should use the39 results of the COA development process to identify information and security40 requirements to refine the troop’s operations.41 42 43
  • 66. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-35 Step 6 - Complete the Plan1 Completion of the plan includes several steps that transform the2 commander’s intent and concept into a fully developed OPORD. These steps,3 examined in detail here, are the following:4 5 Select a COA. The troop commander makes this selection based on his6 comparison of the alternative COAs (conducted earlier as part of troop-7 leading step 4, make a tentative plan), results of the troop’s leader’s8 reconnaissance, and information gained through division and brigade9 reconnaissance and security operations.10 11 Conduct Detailed War-Gaming. This is normally a more time-intensive12 process than the initial war-gaming of the COAs. By war-gaming the plan13 again, this time in more detail, the commander can better visualize how the14 operation will occur, determine when and where he will need to make15 decisions, and identify when and where he must employ CS and CSS assets.16 The end result of war-gaming is a fully integrated plan that includes a detailed17 operations overlay, a detailed direct fire plan, an integrated indirect fire plan,18 refined obstacle plan, and a complete troop CSS plan.19 20 The commander uses the detailed war-gaming process to assist him in21 accomplishing these planning and preparation objectives:22 23 • Build additional flexibility into the plan by developing branch plans24 based on likely enemy COAs, or refine the COA so it addresses all25 likely enemy COAs.26 • Develop graphic control measures (such as checkpoints (TIRS/GIRS),27 contact points, and TRPs) that facilitate control and flexibility.28 • Integrate operating system assets (including fire support, engineers,29 ADA, and NBC) with maneuver elements to support troop tasks and30 purposes identified in the scheme of maneuver.31 • Conduct a bottom-up review of the higher headquarters’ plan,32 including integration of additional ISR system assets at troop level.33 This step may entail identifying required refinements, additions, and34 deletions to higher’s plan and developing recommendations for later35 submission to the higher staff.36 • Develop coordinating instructions.37 • Complete paragraphs 3, 4, and 5 of the OPORD (as well as selected38 annexes if required).39 • Assess on-order and be-prepared missions.40 • Identify projected CSS expenditures.41 • Identify projected casualties and resulting medical requirements.42 43
  • 67. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-36 The commander and subordinate leaders should use the following1 procedures and considerations in conducting detailed war-gaming:2 3 • The essential tasks identified during COA development can be used to4 drive the progress of the war game.5 • Include all appropriate personnel in the war-gaming process; these6 may be the XO, 1SG, FSO/STRIKER platoon leader, maintenance7 team chief, and others.8 • Evaluate the COAs using a map, accurate sketch, or terrain model.9 • Carefully consider actions on contact.10 • As the war game continues, identify when and where to integrate CS11 and CSS assets.12 • As necessary, make refinements to supplementary plans, such as those13 for fire support and obstacles.14 • Use additional graphic control measures to add clarity to the scheme of15 maneuver.16 17 The commander can choose among three basic war-gaming techniques18 (the box, the belt, and avenue in depth) in the analysis of friendly COAs. He19 and the subordinate leaders can use any one technique or a combination to20 help them visualize the battlefield or look at the operation in a logical21 sequence. In doing this, they should avoid becoming unduly concerned with22 the structure of the war game. Rather, they should remain focused on its23 purpose, adapting the war-gaming techniques as necessary to accomplish the24 purpose.25 26 • Box technique. The box method focuses the war game on a specific27 area of the battlefield. This may be the objective area, the enemy28 security zone, or some other critical location where the decisive action29 will take place. Determine the size of the box based on the specific30 situation; it should include all of the units, friendly and enemy, that31 will have a direct impact on the decisive action. This technique is a32 good one to use when time is limited because of its focus on the33 decisive action. A key disadvantage, however, is that in considering34 only actions at the decisive point the commander may overlook other35 critical actions or events that could have a significant impact on the36 troop’s mission.37 38 • Belt technique. The belt technique allows the commander to divide39 the COA into phases or belts. This may be done in several ways, such40 as from phase line to phase line or by significant event. Each phase is41 then war-gamed in sequence. This approach is most effective for42 reconnaissance COAs. As an example, a reconnaissance operation can43 be divided into these phases or belts:44
  • 68. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-37 − Movement from tactical assembly areas to the LD or attack1 position.2 − Movement from the LD to the forward edge of the enemy security3 zone.4 − Actions through the security zone to the reconnaissance objective.5 − Establishment of observation on the objective.6 − Target acquisition or reconnaissance handover of enemy.7 8 • Avenue in depth technique. This method is most effective during9 war-gaming of a defensive COA, especially when there are several10 avenues of approach to consider. Using the enemy’s most probable11 COA, the commander and subordinate leaders analyze friendly and12 enemy actions along one avenue of approach at a time.13 14 In addition to the selected war-gaming technique, several other factors will15 have an impact on how the commander and subordinate leaders carry out the16 war game. The following discussion focuses on the participants, procedures,17 and other considerations for conducting the process.18 19 • Participants. As noted, the troop’s subordinate leaders should assist20 the commander in conducting the war game. Participants may include21 the XO, 1SG, platoon leaders, PSGs, FSO, engineer platoon leader,22 supporting ISR section leaders, and troop master gunner. Ensure that23 everyone who takes part thoroughly understands all projected friendly24 and enemy COAs and is ready to contribute to the process. At a25 minimum, the commander should conduct the war game with the XO26 playing the role of the enemy commander. (NOTE: Based on the27 troop’s priorities of work, some leaders listed here may not be28 available for the war-gaming session.)29 30 • Terrain. Incorporate the results of the leader’s reconnaissance into the31 MCOO. Reevaluate the terrain to ensure that the classification32 (severely restricted, restricted, or unrestricted) is correct.33 34 • Enemy Capabilities. Update the SITEMP with new enemy35 information. Ensure that each participant thoroughly understands the36 enemy’s capabilities and limitations and that each knows the37 difference between known and suspected enemy positions. One38 technique is to make leaders of the team’s CS attachments responsible39 for learning and reporting their enemy counterparts’ capabilities; for40 example, the FSO is responsible for threat artillery systems, and so41 forth. Evaluate how and when the enemy can affect the troop using the42 eight forms of contact:43
  • 69. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-38 − Visual contact.1 − Physical contact (direct fire contact).2 − Indirect fire contact.3 − Contact with obstacles of enemy or unknown origin.4 − Contact with enemy or unknown aircraft.5 − Situations involving NBC conditions.6 − Situations involving electronic warfare tactics (such as jamming,7 interference, and imitative deception).8 − Non-hostile.9 10 NOTE: Refer to chapter 3 for a detailed discussion of actions on contact.11 12 • Friendly forces. Assess current maintenance and personnel status13 reports to determine whether the combat power of any adjacent units14 will affect the troop plan.15 16 • Assumptions. Specify assumptions that were made during the COA17 development process so that participants understand the underlying18 doctrinal principles and objectives.19 20 Finalize the Plan. After concluding the war-gaming process, the21 commander takes the actions outlined in the following paragraphs to complete22 the plan (including any branch plans) and wrap up preparations for the23 upcoming operations. He includes any additional activities that he and the24 troop’s subordinate leaders believe will contribute to unit readiness.25 26 Begin bottom-up refinement. This process includes developing27 refinements, additions, and deletions to the task force plan and submitting28 them to the appropriate member of the squadron/brigade staff. For example, if29 the fire support plan allocates a smoke target to screen troop movement, the30 commander may discover during war-gaming that the target is not in a correct31 position to support the troop. He would then direct the troop FSO to submit a32 change to the target list.33 34 Finalize CSS integration. After estimating how many casualties and35 disabled vehicles the troop will incur and pinpointing expected locations for36 these losses, the commander integrates the troop’s CSS requirements into37 paragraph 4 of the OPORD. This includes (but is not limited to) such factors38 as the location of unit casualty and maintenance collection points, times when39 troop assets will occupy them, routes to higher CSS sites, and security40 procedures for CSS assets.41 NOTE: Refer to Chapter 8 for a more detailed discussion of CSS planning.42
  • 70. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-39 Identify command and control requirements. Based on their visualization1 of the fight, the commander and subordinate leaders identify other command2 and control requirements that will be necessary to ensure the success of the3 mission. Covered in paragraph 5 of the OPORD, these include graphic control4 measures, signals, locations of the commander and XO, and communications5 during the operation with other units and/or commanders.6 7 Finalize graphics. The commander must be sure to add troop graphics to8 the task force overlay. (NOTE: One technique is to use a different color to9 distinguish the troop’s operational graphics from existing higher headquarters’10 graphics.)11 12 Prepare the OPORD. The troop commander begins this step by13 finalizing his orders products. Examples include the following items:14 15 • The SITEMP.16 • Supporting plans, including those covering R&S, maneuver, fire17 support, and CSS.18 • Operational graphics.19 • “Visualization” products, such as maps, overlays, sketches, models,20 and matrices.21 22 The commander must decide how these products will be produced and23 distributed to the troop’s subordinate elements. One technique is to employ24 personnel from the troop CP and headquarters section in production and25 distribution tasks, such as building terrain models and copying graphics or26 matrices. The commander must also establish a quality control system to27 ensure that all products are complete and accurate. (NOTE: Refer to the28 discussion of the functions of the troop CP.)29 30 When time is short, the commander must weigh the need for a lengthy,31 thoroughly detailed written OPORD against the value of a relatively brief, but32 still well-developed, plan that he can explain orally and visualize through the33 use of maps and models. At the troop and platoon levels, there often is not34 enough time to write out every single detail of a thorough five-paragraph35 OPORD. Also, subordinates will find it difficult to copy pertinent information36 and still listen as the commander issues the order. It is advisable, therefore, to37 provide a detailed, but concise, document that summarizes the essentials of38 the order. Subordinates can then listen carefully as the commander explains39 (and illustrates) the details of the order, writing down only the most essential40 items.41 42 43
  • 71. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-40 Step 7 - Issue the Order1 The OPORD should precisely explain, both verbally and visually, the2 commander’s intent, providing enough information to ensure that all3 subordinate elements work toward the desired end state. When the4 commander has finished issuing the order, subordinate leaders should walk5 away with a clear mental picture of what he expects their elements to do.6 7 OPORD Format. The format of the five-paragraph OPORD is organized8 to help the commander paint a picture of all aspects of the operation, from the9 terrain to the enemy and finally to the unit’s own actions from higher to lower.10 The format assists him in deciding what relevant details he must include and11 in providing subordinates with a smooth flow of information from beginning12 to end. At the same time, the commander must ensure that the order is not13 only clear and complete but also as brief as possible. If he has already14 addressed an item adequately in a previous warning order, he then can simply15 state “no change” or provide any necessary updates.16 17 NOTE: Refer to Appendix A for a discussion of OPORD format.18 19 Location and Time. The commander should select a location from which20 to issue the OPORD that is secure and will help enhance understanding of the21 order. An ideal site, when time and security factors allow, is one that22 overlooks the area of operations. Whenever possible, the commander should23 avoid issuing the order during hours of darkness. If he must issue the order at24 night, he chooses a location (such as inside the troop CP) that allows25 subordinates to see visual materials clearly. In daylight hours, he then takes26 the order group to a favorable vantage point to clarify the plan.27 28 Presentation Techniques. During the orders briefing, the commander29 may make use of the visual materials developed earlier to help paint the30 picture of how the fight will unfold. Subordinates will better comprehend31 complex ideas and situations with the aid of a sketch, diagram, or model. The32 commander should further ensure that subordinates keep their maps, with33 graphics posted, on hand for reference. As noted, he may furnish copies of34 the written order (or a summary of key details). He then must present the plan35 clearly and logically, providing only updates (not complete restatement) of36 items he has covered in earlier warning orders or FRAGOs.37 38 Confirmation Brief Techniques. At the conclusion of the OPORD39 briefing, the commander answers any questions, and then conducts a walk-40 through confirmation brief (this is not a rehearsal) on a terrain model that41 provides accurate representations of the terrain, the enemy, and friendly42 graphics. The focus of the confirmation brief is on the elements of what, why,43 and how for execution of the troop’s mission; it covers subordinates’ specific44 tasks within the plan. The commander should avoid questioning subordinates45 specifically how they will execute their tasks because they have not yet46
  • 72. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-41 formulated their own plans. Rather, he uses the confirmation brief to further1 clarify the scheme of maneuver for them and to give them a feel for how they2 will work in concert with one another to achieve the unit purpose.3 Subordinate leaders should use the confirmation brief to discuss issues related4 to the troop timeline and their own timelines.5 6 Step 8 - Supervise and Refine7 The best plan may fail if it is not managed effectively and efficiently.8 Throughout the troop-leading process, the commander must continue to refine9 the plan, conduct coordination with adjacent units, and supervise combat10 preparation and execution. Inspections and rehearsals are critical elements of11 this step.12 13 Precombat Training. During continuous combat operations, units at all14 levels should have either formal or informal combat zone training programs to15 convert new ideas into actual practice. This allows soldiers to practice a16 variety of skills that will enhance their protection and endurance during17 extended combat. For example, after receiving his mission, the troop18 commander should assess the troop’s proficiency in the individual, leader, and19 collective tasks required for the upcoming mission. If he feels the troop, or a20 subordinate element, cannot perform a task properly, he can then conduct21 precombat training during the planning and preparation phases.22 23 Inspections. Inspections allow the commander to check the troop’s24 operational readiness. The key goal is to ensure that soldiers and vehicles are25 fully prepared to execute the upcoming mission. Inspections also contribute26 to improved morale.27 28 The entire troop chain of command must know how to conduct precombat29 checks (PCC) and precombat inspections (PCI) in accordance with applicable30 unit SOPs and guidelines from the troop MTP.31 32 Rehearsals. Rehearsals are practice sessions conducted to prepare units33 for an upcoming operation or event. They are essential in ensuring thorough34 preparation, coordination, and understanding of the commander’s plan and35 intent. Troop commanders should never underestimate the value of36 rehearsals.37 38 Effective rehearsals require leaders and, when time permits, other troop39 soldiers to perform required tasks, ideally under conditions that are as close as40 possible to those expected for the actual operation. At their best, rehearsals41 are interactive; participants maneuver their actual vehicles or use vehicle42 models or simulations while verbalizing their elements’ actions. During every43 rehearsal, the focus is on the how element, allowing subordinates to practice44 the actions called for in their individual scheme of maneuver. (NOTE: A45
  • 73. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-42 rehearsal is different from the process of talking through what is supposed to1 happen. For example, in a rehearsal, platoon leaders should actually send2 SPOTREPs when reporting enemy contact, rather than simply saying, “I3 would send a spot report now.”)4 5 The commander uses well-planned, efficiently run rehearsals to6 accomplish the following:7 8 • Reinforce training and increase proficiency in critical tasks.9 • Reveal weaknesses or problems in the plan, leading to further10 refinement of the plan or development of additional branch plans.11 • Integrate the actions of subordinate elements.12 • Confirm coordination requirements between the troop and adjacent13 units.14 • Improve each soldier’s understanding of the concept of the operation,15 the direct fire plan, anticipated contingencies, and possible actions and16 reactions for various situations that may arise during the operation.17 18 The troop commander can choose among several approaches in19 conducting rehearsals. He must decide on the scope of the rehearsal in terms20 of participation and on the specific rehearsal technique to be used. As a21 general guideline, rehearsals should follow the crawl-walk-run training22 methodology to prepare the troop and subordinate elements for increasingly23 difficult conditions.24 25 Scope. The troop can prepare for operations using reduced-force26 rehearsals and/or full-force rehearsals. These considerations apply:27 • The commander conducts reduced-force rehearsals when time is28 limited or when the tactical situation does not permit everyone to29 attend. Troop members who can take part practice their actions on30 mock-ups, sand tables, or actual terrain (usually over a smaller area31 than in the actual operation).32 • The full-force rehearsal is the most effective, but consumes the most33 time and resources. It involves virtually every soldier who will34 participate in the operation. If possible, it should be conducted under35 the same conditions (such as weather, time of day, and terrain) that the36 team can expect to encounter during actual operations.37 Techniques. Rehearsal techniques include the following:38 • Special rehearsal. This rehearsal covers tasks that will be critical to39 the success of the operation at individual, crew, or element level. The40 commander may initiate special rehearsals when he issues the warning41 order early in the troop-leading process.42
  • 74. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-43 • Map rehearsal. This is usually conducted as part of a confirmation1 brief involving subordinate leaders and/or portions of their elements.2 The leader uses the map and overlay to guide participants as they brief3 their role in the operation. If necessary, he can use a sketch map.4 • Communications rehearsal. This is a reduced-force or full-force5 rehearsal conducted when the situation does not allow the troop to6 gather at one location. Subordinate elements check their7 communications systems and rehearse key elements of the troop plan.8 • Key leader rehearsal. In this rehearsal, leaders discuss the mission9 while moving over the key terrain in vehicles.10 • Sand table or terrain model. This reduced-force or full-force11 technique employs a small-scale table or model that depicts graphic12 control measures and important terrain features for reference and13 orientation. Participants walk or move “micro” armor around the table14 or model to practice the actions of their own elements or vehicles in15 relation to other members of the troop.16 • Full-mounted rehearsal. This is used during a full-force rehearsal.17 Rehearsals begin in good visibility over open terrain, and then become18 increasingly realistic until conditions approximate those expected in19 the area of operations. This technique presents several options:20 − The troop may rehearse with platoons or other troop elements21 going “force on force” against each other.22 − The troop trains can portray enemy forces to prompt action by the23 platoons or other troop elements.24 − The entire troop may go against another troop-sized element.25 26 Guidelines. The troop commander is responsible for most aspects of the27 troop’s rehearsals. The following paragraphs outline procedures and28 considerations that affect the rehearsal process.29 30 General. The commander will select the tasks to be practiced and will31 control execution of the rehearsal. He will usually designate someone to role-32 play the enemy elements he expects to face during the operation.33 Conditions. Rehearsal situations should be as close as possible to those34 expected during the actual operation. This includes the physical aspects of the35 rehearsal site as well as such factors as light and weather conditions.36 Actions before the OPORD is issued. Initial warning orders should37 provide subordinate leaders with sufficient detail to allow them to schedule38 and conduct rehearsals before the OPORD is issued. For example, leaders can39 begin rehearsing mission-specific tasks, drills, and SOPs for each element40 early in the troop-leading process. Rehearsals after the OPORD can then41 focus on tasks that cover integration of the entire team.42
  • 75. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-44 Progression of rehearsal activities. Rehearsals begin with soldier and1 leader confirmation briefs to ensure understanding of individual and unit2 tasks. Individual elements and the troop as a whole then use sand tables or3 sketches to talk through the execution of the plan. This is followed by walk-4 through exercises and full-speed mounted rehearsals.5 6 Rehearsal priorities. The troop commander establishes a priority of7 rehearsals based on the time available and the relative importance of the8 actions to be rehearsed. As with COA development, the priority should begin9 at the decisive point of the operation and move on to actions that are less10 critical to the plan. As an example, the commander’s priorities could call for11 rehearsal of tasks and drills in this order: actions on the objective, actions on12 contact, reaction to an air attack, movement formations and techniques,13 medical treatment and evacuation, and resupply operations.14 15 Refinement. At all times, the troop commander must ensure that the16 troop has an accurate picture of the enemy situation and that the plan to defeat17 the enemy is relevant to the enemy’s current disposition. This means that the18 troop plan must continue to evolve as the enemy situation develops.19 20 As discussed previously, the troop will receive a constant stream of21 additional information about the enemy before the operation starts through a22 combination of different levels of reconnaissance and/or security operations.23 The commander uses this information to continually adjust the plan as24 necessary. Changes to the plan and the enemy situation must be disseminated25 down to the lowest organizational level. Although these constant updates may26 cause some disruption of troop-leading procedures at the platoon level, the27 refinement process is critical to the success of the troop plan.28 29 NOTE: Refinement of the plan does not stop when the troop crosses the LD.30 Once the operation is under way, the commander continues to adjust31 the plan based on the enemy’s actions and the terrain on which the32 troop is operating. The commander gains additional information33 through reports and the troop’s own development of the situation.34 He uses FRAGOs to update the troop on refinements to the plan.35 36 Additional Preparation Tasks. To assure himself of adequate time to37 focus on his own critical troop-leading tasks, the troop commander must38 effectively delegate the numerous preparation tasks that are part of the troop-39 leading process. One technique is to use members of the troop headquarters to40 assist in completion of these activities. Available personnel may include the41 troop master gunner, NBC NCO, and communications specialist and the crews42 from the commander’s, XO’s, and 1SG’s vehicles. Additional preparations43 delegated by the commander may include, but are not limited to, the following44 tasks:45 46
  • 76. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-45 • Build terrain models.1 • Create visualization products such as sketches, strip maps, and2 overlays.3 • Copy analog orders, graphics, and matrices.4 • Create digital products based on other materials (including the5 SITEMP, orders, overlays, and reports).6 • Record incoming information such as status reports, warning orders,7 and FRAGOs.8 • Continuously refine the SITEMP using the latest intelligence.9 • Distribute the updated SITEMP to all troop elements.10 • Enforce the troop timeline.11 • Receive standard reports from troop elements.12 • Pass required reports to the task force.13 • Track unit battle preparations and logistical and maintenance status.14 15 Abbreviated Troop-leading Procedures16 When there is not enough time to conduct all eight troop-leading steps in17 detail, such as when a change of mission occurs after an operation is in18 progress, the troop commander must understand how to trim the procedures to19 save time. Most steps of these abbreviated troop-leading procedures are done20 mentally, but the commander skips none of the steps. Once the order is21 received, he conducts a quick map reconnaissance, analyzes the mission using22 the factors of METT-TC, and sends for the subordinate leaders. He makes23 sure each leader posts the minimum required control measures on his maps,24 then issues a FRAGO covering the key elements of the enemy and friendly25 situations, mission, commander’s intent, and concept of the operation. The26 service support and command and signal paragraphs can be deleted if they are27 unchanged or covered by SOP. The commander and subordinate leaders may28 also conduct a quick walk-through rehearsal of critical elements of the29 maneuver plan using a hastily prepared terrain model or sand table.30 31 In some cases, there may not be enough time even for these shortened32 procedures. The troop may have to move out and receive FRAGOs from the33 squadron/brigade by FBCB2 or radio. It then becomes critical for the troop34 commander to send FRAGOs of his own to the subordinate leaders explaining35 the troop’s purpose within the overall maneuver plan.36 37 At all times, the commander, XO, 1SG, and subordinate leaders share the38 responsibility for keeping the troop informed of the ever-changing enemy and39 friendly situations. They accomplish this by monitoring the task force net and40 issuing frequent updates to their elements using available communications41
  • 77. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-46 assets. Digital information systems (such as FBCB2, EPLRS, and appliqué)1 and global positioning systems (GPS) are valuable tools when the troop is2 forced to use abbreviated troop-leading procedures and FRAGOs. These3 systems allow the commander to communicate information quickly and4 accurately.5 6 Other keys to success when abbreviated procedures are in effect include a7 well-trained troop; clearly developed, thoroughly understood SOPs; and an8 understanding by all members of the troop of the current tactical situation9 (situational awareness). Whenever time is available, however, there is no10 substitute for effective, thorough troop-leading procedures. The odds of11 success increase still further when detailed planning and rehearsals are12 conducted prior to an operation, even if time is limited. Successful13 commanders and leaders make the most of every available minute.14 15 16 17 SECTION II. COMMAND, CONTROL,18 COMMUNICATIONS, COMPUTERS, AND19 INTELLIGENCE ARCHITECTURES20 21 Command, control, communications, computers, intelligence,22 surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) is an integrated system of doctrine,23 procedures, organizational structures, personnel, equipment, facilities and24 communications designed to—25 • Collect, evaluate, and interpret the information needed to develop26 situational awareness in support of a commander’s mission.27 • Support a commander’s exercise of C2 across the range of military28 operations through regulation of forces and functions in accordance29 with commander’s intent.30 31 The C4ISR system will allow the commander and staff to plan, execute,32 collect, control, exploit, disseminate, present, and protect information using a33 resilient voice and data communications network to enable effective C2 on the34 battlefield. This includes conducting operations from alert through35 redeployment and conducting counterintelligence operations to exploit or36 deny the adversary’s ability to do the same. Every reconnaissance vehicle in37 the troop will be equipped to support all aspects of operations—maneuver,38 fires, logistics, force protection, information operations, and intelligence (see39 Figures 2-7 and 2-8).40 41
  • 78. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-47 1 2 Figure 2-7. Recce troop command posts.3 4
  • 79. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-48 1 Figure 2-8. BRT command posts.2 FM NETS3 The troop operates on the following external nets and transmits or receives4 information by either voice or digital means.5 • Brigade/Squadron Operations and Intelligence (OI) Net. This net6 is used primarily to share threat and friendly information. All routine7 and recurring reports are transmitted on this net.8 • Brigade/Squadron Command Net. This net is used to pass C29 information from one commander to another.10 • Administrative and Logistics (A/L) Net. This net is used for the11 exchange of logistical information and unit status reports, as required.12 • Troop Command Net. This net is used to pass C2 information as13 well as critical reports within the troop.14
  • 80. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-49 The troop commander and the CP normally monitor the brigade/squadron1 command net, and operate on the brigade/squadron OI net and the troop2 command net. The 1SG normally operates on the troop command net and the3 troop and squadron A/L nets (see Figures 2-7 and 2-8).4 Figures 2-7 and 2-8 also depict how the troop command net links the troop5 commander with his subordinate units. The number of operators on the net6 will vary with mission and task organization and may include engineer7 reconnaissance, NBC reconnaissance elements, or remote multi-sensor teams.8 Platoon leaders and platoon sergeants operate on the troop command net and9 their own platoon nets. The FIST elements operate on three radio nets:10 • The troop command net.11 • The troop fire direction net.12 • The brigade/squadron fire support element digital/voice net.13 14 The FIST also monitors at least one of the following nets:15 • The brigade/squadron command net.16 • The brigade/squadron OI net.17 • The firing battery net (supporting artillery headquarters in the heavy18 and light division).19 Elements of the troop may frequently move to the command nets of the20 maneuver battalions or adjacent units operating in their sector to transmit21 information and coordinate operations directly. Those nets should be22 identified prior to executing an operation and the frequencies included in the23 troop order coordinating instructions.24 COMPUTERS25 The following paragraphs provide information on the digital C2 systems26 and architecture that supports C2 operations.27 Army Battle Command System Components28 The Army battle command system (ABCS) is made up of the Army29 tactical command and control system (ATCCS) sub-components, the Force30 XXI Battle Command Brigade and Below (FBCB2) System, and the tactical31 internet (TI). The ATCCS, including the maneuver control system (MCS), all-32 source analysis system (ASAS), advanced field artillery data system33 (AFATDS), forward area air defense command, control, communications, and34 intelligence system (FAADC31), the combat service support control system35 (CSSCS), and the global command and control system-Army (GCCS-A) are36 the primary digital communication systems between CPs. FBCB2 is the37 primary digital system for communication and transmission of situational38 awareness data at squadron and below. The functions these elements provide39 are discussed in the following paragraphs.40 41
  • 81. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-50 FBCB2 Message Interface1 FBCB2 (hardware) is at the individual vehicle level. Embedded battle2 command (EBC) is FBCB2 background software operating on ATCC3 systems. It enables command posts to receive and display situational4 awareness (SA) and C2 information from the tactical level on any ATCC5 system. Figure 2-9 shows an example of the ATCCS message interfaces.6 7 8 Figure 2-9. ATCCS message interfaces.9 10 Force XXI Battle Command, Brigade and Below11 FBCB2 is the foundation system for ABCS and the TI. Mounted on most12 of the vehicles in the squadron, each system is linked to a PLGR and a13 SINCGARS or enhanced position location reporting system (EPLRS) radio.14 Each FBCB2 generates and transmits its own position location. Collectively,15 the FBCB2 systems generate the Blue SA picture. Operators utilize FBCB216 to generate threat spot reports which creates the majority of the Red picture at17 the tactical level. The messaging, reporting, and orders/graphics capabilities18 of the system support battle command for each battlefield functional area.19
  • 82. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-51 FBCB2 receives data across the TI via the internet controller (INC). The1 INC is a tactical router built into the SINCGARS radio system. The EPLRS2 data radio and the SINCGARS data/voice radio transmit/receive digital3 information between vehicles. This communication architecture is discussed4 in greater detail in the TI paragraph of this section.5 NOTE: The ATCCS discussed below has EBC software that allows interface6 with FBCB2.7 8 Maneuver Control System (S3 Functions)9 MCS is the hub of the ABCS components in a CP. It is the primary10 system for the creation and dissemination of orders, graphics, and operations-11 related reports. MCS automatically receives friendly forces positioning data12 generated by FBCB2-equipped systems of subordinate units resulting in the13 Blue (friendly) picture. There are limitations in the automatic generation of14 Blue SA. Obviously, forces that are not equipped with FBCB2 or are not15 transmitting to the TI will not automatically appear in the SA picture and must16 be manually input into MCS by the operations section. Operators may also17 manually input blue icons via FBCB2. At the squadron, MCS performs these18 primary functions:19 • Receives orders and graphics from higher and adjacent units.20 • Creates and disseminates orders and graphics to subordinate, higher,21 and adjacent units. Near-term ability to interface graphics and orders22 to FBCB2 is limited.23 • Extracts information from other systems to display a picture of the24 battlefield which may include—25 − Blue and Red SA.26 − Terrain.27 − Friendly graphics.28 − Artillery range fans.29 − ADA umbrellas.30 − Obstacles and contaminated areas.31 − Weather.32 − Logistics status.33 • Sends and receives reports.34 35 Future system capabilities should allow for MCS to support COA analysis36 and wargaming as well as digital rehearsals.37
  • 83. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-52 All-Source Analysis System (S2 Functions)1 ASAS supports intelligence operations, providing linkage to strategic and2 tactical intelligence sensors and sources. ASAS primary functions include—3 • Data access, data basing, and correlation capabilities.4 • Creation and dissemination of intelligence reports, templates, and5 annexes.6 • Receipt of intelligence reports from a variety of sources, including7 FBCB2 and other digital systems; display and management of the Red8 SA picture.9 • Collection management.10 • Support of targeting functions.11 • Linkage to JSTARS and TUAV.12 The squadron has two ASAS systems located in the S2 section at the main13 CP. The S2 utilizes ASAS to receive intelligence reports from all sources and14 to create and manage the correlated Red SA picture, which the other ATCC15 systems in the CP can access. Additionally, the S2 routinely sends the threat16 SA picture he generates down to subordinate units who receive it on FBCB2.17 He also sends the threat SA picture to brigade where it is integrated into the18 brigade-level threat SA picture by the brigade S2 section.19 Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (FSO Functions)20 AFATDS provides automated capabilities to control fire support21 operations. Located at the FSE in the main CP as well as the command group22 and TAC CP, the system provides the ability to—23 • Create and disseminate fire support orders, graphics, and control24 measures.25 • Receive and process calls for fire from other digital systems and target26 acquisition radars.27 • Manage mission allocation.28 • Monitor firing unit status and locations.29 • Transmit and receive reports and free text messages.30 • Display the Red and Blue SA pictures from MCS and ASAS.31 • In conjunction with ASAS, provide integrated fires/IEW management.32 Forward Area Air Defense Command, Control, Communications, and33 Intelligence System (ADA Functions)34 FAADC3I is the collection of computer and communication systems that35 serve to control air defense elements and create the air battle picture. It serves36 to integrate sensors (AWACS, Patriot, Sentinel) with SHORAD weapons37
  • 84. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-53 systems. The long-range air picture is created from information received from1 AWACS aircraft transmitted on Joint Tactical Information Distribution2 System (JTIDS) radios, and from the division’s Sentinel air acquisition radars3 transmitted through the ground based sensor (GBS). Air track data is sent via4 EPLRS and SINCGARS radios to individual firing elements (Linebacker,5 Avenger, and STINGER teams). The total FAADC3I system provides real6 time threat air engagement operations, airspace situational awareness, and air7 threat early warning.8 There are no FAADC3I systems in the brigade headquarters. Information9 on the air battle picture is accessed via MCS, through the brigade, from the10 division.11 Combat Service Support Control System (S4 Functions)12 CSSCS provides logistics status and information in support of CSS13 planning and operations. The system receives subordinate unit logistical14 reports from FBCB2 and other CSSCS terminals, and transmits reports and15 requirements to echelons above brigade support elements. The S1/S4 section16 in the CTCP will be equipped with a CSSCS terminal and with FBCB2 to17 receive digital logistical and situation reports from units within the squadron.18 The CSSCS network does not provide any requisition functions. Logisticians19 continue to rely on GCCS-A and SIDPERS to request, coordinate, and receive20 supplies and to conduct personnel transactions.21 Global Command and Control System-Army (Movement Planning,22 Division and Higher)23 GCCS-A provides logistics ordering and management functions for all24 classes of supply and replaces the ULLS-G and ULLS-S4 systems.25 Tactical Operations Center Server26 27 The main CP server is a software program that acts as a router for the CP,28 distributing any C2 messages to the appropriate ATCCS component in the CP.29 Main CP server software is normally resident on an MCS or ASAS.30 Integrated Meteorological System (SWO and S2 Functions)31 32 Integrated meteorological system (IMETS) is a software program that33 provides the capability to do detailed analysis of weather effects on terrain and34 equipment. It normally will reside on an ASAS terminal at division level for35 use by the division staff weather officer and the G2 section. The staff can36 access IMETS data or request specific information or analysis through the37 S2/G2 channels.38 39
  • 85. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-54 Automated Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Information System1 (ANBACIS) (Chemical [NBC] Functions)2 This software is used to report NBC strikes/warnings and to predict the3 contamination areas associated with such strikes. The software is loaded on4 select MCS computers.5 6 Digital Topographic Support System (Engineer Functions)7 This system is used by the division engineer to create topographic and8 terrain analysis products that can easily be accessed via the MCS.9 CHATS (HUMINT Collector Functions)10 This system is a portable or vehicle mounted computer system used by the11 HUMINT intelligence collectors assigned throughout the squadron to report12 HUMINT operations and maintain an operational database.13 Army Battle Command System Communications Links14 While each component of the ABCS is a powerful C2 tools individually,15 they reach their full potential when linked by a local area network (LAN), a16 wide area network (WAN), or the TI.17 Local Area Network18 A LAN network is a data communications network that interconnects19 digital devices and other peripherals. Individual systems are linked and20 distributed over a localized area to allow communication between computers21 and sharing resources. Two or more computers linked by software and22 connected by cable are considered a LAN. A LAN includes—23 • Digital devices (computers, scanners, printers, and other peripherals).24 • A communications medium that exchanges data from one device to25 another.26 • Network adapters that provide devices with an interface to the27 communications medium.28 Digital systems within a CP are normally connected on a LAN. However,29 routers on the LAN allow addressees to change as needed for jump and/or30 split operations. A tactical LAN is configured to interconnect various main CP31 shelters. Staff leaders must ensure the LAN cables are properly connected to32 their shelter/system and to the previous and next shelter/system. The S6 is the33 LAN manager for the squadron and has approval authority over all systems34 connected to the LAN. The LAN manager is responsible for physically35 establishing, connecting, and maintaining the operation and for36 troubleshooting the LAN. He is also responsible for ensuring the LAN is37 connected to the WAN. See FM 6-24.7 [FM 24-7] for additional information.38
  • 86. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-55 Wide Area Network1 A WAN connects several LANs and allows for the transmission of large2 amounts of data over extended distances. Digital CPs use the WAN to3 connect to higher, adjacent, and subordinate unit LANs using one of the4 following types of communications systems:5 • MSE network.6 • Global broadcast service.7 • Near-term data radio (NTDR).8 The LAN connects to the WAN at a gateway. The gateway is located in a9 small extension node (SEN) or large extension node (LEN). The brigade S610 and supporting signal troop are responsible for connectivity to the SEN and11 WAN operations.12 Tactical Internet13 The TI consists of tactical radios (SINCGARS and EPLRS) linked by14 routers, which allow digital systems to inter-operate in a dynamic battlefield15 environment. The purpose of the TI is to provide timely, reliable, and secure16 battlespace information. The TI provides seamless communications17 connectivity that is necessary to deliver situational awareness and C2 data to18 digital battlefield systems. FBCB2 communicates with ATCCS systems via19 the TI. Two distinct subnetworks comprise the TI: the lower TI and the upper20 TI.21 22 Lower Tactical Internet. The lower TI provides for the digital23 communications for echelons at brigade and below. It is composed of three24 primary components—EPLRS, SINCGARS, and INCs (see Figure 2-10). The25 function of each in relation to the TI is listed below:26 • EPLRS provides data-only communication (vehicle position27 information, network coordination, and data communication)28 capability.29 • SINCGARS provides data and voice communications capability.30 • INC is the internet controller that is built into the SINCGARS radio31 mount. It provides routing interface between EPLRS and SINCGARS.32 The INC controls information traffic routing. EPLRS are ‘servers’ in33 the TI. All systems are associated with a server in order to pass digital34 traffic. Systems not equipped with EPLRS pass data via the INC35 through SINCGARS to their EPLRS server. If the server is degraded,36 the SINCGARS automatically searches for a quality server and will37 jump servers if necessary. This is invisible to the operator.38
  • 87. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-56 1 Figure 2-10. Lower tactical internet.2 3 4 Upper Tactical Internet. The upper TI (or WIN-T [Warfighter5 Information Network-Terrestrial]) provides SA and C2 dissemination between6 brigade and squadron CPs and echelons above brigade CPs.7 8 9 Security10 The information architecture on the battlefield contributes significantly to11 the warfighting capabilities of units on the battlefield. The digitized12 battlefield brings a new threat—computer network attack (CNA). CNA13 includes operations the threat undertakes to disrupt, deny, degrade, or destroy14 information resident in computers and networks. To protect against CNA,15 security architecture is being developed which will involve security16 technologies, such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, in-line network17 encryptors, and host security. The digital security requirements are defined in18 AR 380-19 and the PEO Command, Control and Communications Systems19 (PEO C3S) Security Policy.20 21
  • 88. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-57 SECTION III. TECHNIQUES OF TACTICAL CONTROL1 2 PLANNING PROCESS3 FBCB2 provides significant enhancements to the troop planning process.4 With digitization, minimal time is lost in mission planning and preparation.5 The squadron commander and his staff can digitally issue a warning order and6 draft operations overlay. With this information in hand, the troop commander7 and his subordinate leaders may begin their troop-leading procedures,8 rehearsals, and reconnaissance operations, as required, or they may initiate9 movement from their assembly areas to forward locations and develop the10 initial screen line. Upon receipt of the OPORD, they can reorient their11 reconnaissance or surveillance as required.12 REPORTING PROCESS13 Since reconnaissance and surveillance are stealthy operations, digital14 communication will often be the primary method used for C2 and reporting.15 However, sending digital reports when moving, when in contact, and often at16 night is generally not possible.17 Reporting procedures at the troop level must be well thought out and18 addressed in the unit SOP. The troop commander must determine when and19 what reports will be transmitted via voice or digital means and under what20 conditions these reports will be rendered. For example, if reports from the21 scouts must be transmitted via FM voice due to the tactical situation, the troop22 commander must determine who at the troop CP is responsible for the23 transcription and translation of this information into FBCB2 formats and24 further transmission to the squadron TOC. This duty may be assigned to the25 troop XO or troop operations NCO per unit SOP.26 The troop commander, the XO, the S6, and the S2 must determine the27 reporting process and procedures for troops using digital systems. Once28 determined, the process and procedures must be integrated into the overall29 troop SOP and OPORDs.30 SECTION IV. COMMAND GUIDANCE AND31 ORGANIZATIONAL CONTROL32 33 This section addresses techniques and procedures for C2 of a digital unit34 equipped with FBCB2. As much as possible, the section focuses on35 techniques that are not software-version specific, and is not limited to only36 digital systems.37
  • 89. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-58 FM VERSUS DIGITAL COMMUNICATIONS1 The decision whether to use FM or FBCB2 communications is based on2 the situation and SOP. Digital communications should not be viewed as a3 replacement for FM; both are viable C2 tools. FBCB2 provides many4 benefits; however, in some circumstances, it is not the right tool to use to5 communicate. An FM alert should accompany some digital message traffic to6 prompt the recipient(s) to check their message cues and act on the message.7 The troop and brigade SOPs should define what traffic will be sent8 digitally and what traffic will be transmitted on FM, and the conditions for9 each. OPORDs should establish triggers for switching from digital to FM10 communications as contact with the threat commences.11 12 When to Use Digital Messages13 At troop and platoon levels, digital message communications should be14 used for—15 • Transmitting graphics, orders, and FRAGOs when the situation16 permits.17 • Routine reporting, such as logistical status or routine requests for18 logistical support.19 • Threat SPOTREPs. This is critical since the SPOTREP is the means20 by which a threat icon is created and displayed across the brigade net.21 The observer of the threat may not always be able to create the digital22 SPOTREP. In that case, he should report by FM and some other23 platform in the platoon or the troop CP should create the digital report.24 • Planned call-for-fire missions. The digital call for fire should be25 accompanied by an FM alert to the fire support element at the TOC or26 the supporting artillery to whom the message was sent. This is27 discussed in greater detail in the fire support section in Chapter 6.28 • NBC-1 reports. NBC-1 reports should be sent digitally to create the29 contaminated area icon across the network. An FM report on troop30 and brigade command nets should also be transmitted.31 32 When to Use FM Radio33 FM radio remains the primary communication means during contact. It is34 quick for both the transmitter and receiver, multiple stations can eavesdrop on35 the net and receive the information, and it is a medium that can convey36 emotion—a critical aspect in assessing and understanding a battlefield37 situation. At night, light discipline will require most elements of the troop to38 use FM radio. As a result, the troop CP must convert FM traffic into the39 appropriate digital reports. FM radio is normally the primary means of40 communication in the following situations:41
  • 90. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-59 • Contact reports should be initially sent on FM.1 • Calls for fire on targets of opportunity should be sent by FM in order2 to get timely fire support. This is particularly true for moving targets.3 There are situations for planned targets or when the observer is out of4 FM range but has digital connectivity that calls for fire and subsequent5 adjustments will be sent digitally.6 • Urgent MEDEVAC requests should be initially transmitted on FM. A7 follow-up digital report should be sent to provide an accurate reference8 for the recipients.9 VARIABLE MESSAGE FORMATS AND FREE TEXT MESSAGES10 FBCB2 has extensive variable message formats (VMF) as well as the11 capability for creating free text (unformatted) messages. To the maximum12 extent possible, operators should use the VMF messages in order to minimize13 the volume of traffic on the tactical internet and to interface with other14 systems in the ABCS in the most effective manner. When a VMF message is15 transmitted, only the data in the filled-in fields is sent. When a free text16 message is transmitted, all the text is transmitted, generally creating a greater17 transmission load.18 Some VMF reports interface with other systems in the ABCS to add to19 database information or to expand communications. For example, a digital20 threat SPOTREP sends a text message to the addressees and creates an icon of21 the threat in the situational awareness picture that is transmitted across the22 brigade network. Additionally, the report automatically enters into the23 intelligence database of the ASAS, populating the intelligence database at24 brigade, the other subordinate units in the brigade combat team, and division.25 Message Distribution26 The database in FBCB2 contains the tactical internet addresses of all27 FBCB2-equipped platforms and the CPs in the brigade, and some select28 platforms at division level. Messages, orders, and overlays can be sent to29 desired addressees by two methods—unicast and multicast.30 Unicast Transmission31 A unicast transmission is one sent to individual addressees from the32 address list. As a general rule, unless orders, overlays, and logistical status33 reports are short and carefully crafted, they will have to be transmitted by34 unicast. While this may seem arduous and time consuming, it is considerably35 faster than manually copying overlays or reproducing orders, then having36 personnel drive to the CP to pick them up.37 Multicast Groups38 Multicast groups are set groupings of addressees that are established in the39 address database. The benefit of multicast groups is that an operator can40
  • 91. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-60 transmit a file to a group of people in a single action rather than having to go1 through the process of sending it to each individual. The message is not sent2 to all addressees at once, but to each one sequentially.3 An example of a multicast group is the squadron command group, which4 includes the brigade commander, XO, S3, and brigade TAC. There are a5 variety of multicast groups for each unit and battlefield functional area, such6 as fire support or intelligence. Operators can create or tailor multicast groups7 to fit their special requirements. For example, the troop commander can8 create two multicast groups. The first might be for key leaders and include9 the XO, 1SG, platoon leaders and platoon sergeants, and the troop CP. The10 second might be for all platforms in the troop. The troop 1SG could create a11 supply multicast group that would include the platoon sergeants, the supply12 sergeant, the XO, and the squadron S4. The squadron and troop SOPs should13 define the addressees in the most common multicast groups.14 15 FBCB2 has transmission settings that can be set for the number of retries16 the system will automatically execute to get a message to a platform that does17 not receive it the first time. This should be a standard SOP setting across the18 unit. As a rule, the setting should be for a one-time transmission with no19 retries to reduce the volume of traffic on the tactical internet.20 Orders21 FBCB2 provides formats for the creation and transmission of orders. The22 formats largely mirror the doctrinal five-paragraph order format. Some23 considerations when utilizing these formats are listed below.24 • Each field has a limit on the number of characters that can be input.25 The field limitations in version 3.1 are—26 − Situation—4,000.27 − Mission—2,000.28 − Commander’s intent—2,000.29 − Execution—6,000.30 − Comments—200.31 − Service support—6,000.32 − Command and signal—2,000.33 − Annex—6,000.34 • FBCB2 does not currently have a print capability. Order recipients35 will need time to take notes on the order when received.36 • FBCB2 can save an order to the system hard drive, but does not37 currently have the capability to save a file to a disk.38 • The larger the order, the longer it takes to transmit. Orders larger than39 576 bytes must be transmitted by unicast addressing.40 41
  • 92. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-61 The commander’s goal should be to provide a complete order in writing to1 his subordinates. As a minimum, he must provide critical coordinating2 information. Subordinates should have this information before the orders3 brief begins so they can study it beforehand and make notes during the4 briefing. The ability to rapidly create and transmit orders digitally is a5 tremendous capability, but it is still not as effective as a face-to-face order6 brief and rehearsal. FBCB2 does, however, provide an excellent warning7 order and FRAGO capability. When an order has been digitally transmitted to8 subordinates, accompany it with an FM radio call to alert them to check9 FBCB2 for receipt and to acknowledge that they have read and understand the10 order.11 Graphics and Overlays12 The ability to create and transmit digital graphics, coupled with automatic13 friendly force situational awareness, is altering the traditional doctrinal14 application of graphics. Simplicity is a principal consideration—less is better15 since it reduces overlay transmission times and screen clutter (having too16 many objects on the screen making the display hard to read or illegible). A17 key point is maps are still required and still must have graphics posted on18 them. Soldiers will find that a map is easier and more appropriate to use when19 referencing a large terrain area, when moving, and when fighting.20 The following paragraphs address some of the considerations in creating21 and using graphics.22 Object Size23 Digital graphic object size is an important consideration in creating24 overlays. The larger the overall size of an overlay, the longer it will take to25 transmit. Below are some references to help in considering the size of26 graphical objects.27 • A single character (letter or number) is eight bits; 100 bits equals one28 byte.29 • A single straight line, no matter how long, consists of two points,30 equaling 30 bytes of information. Adding another point (by clicking31 the mouse or touching the screen) increases the size of the object by 732 bytes.33 • A single point icon, such as an unlabelled target symbol, is 21 bytes.34 The label for an object can be up to 21 bytes. A target symbol with a35 five-character alphanumeric designator equals 23 bytes.36 • Message headers are 17 to 18 bytes; date/time group is 4 bytes.37 • A single object can have no more than 50 points. A circle or oval has38 a lot of points, and is a large amount of information to transfer, no39 matter how big it appears on the screen. On the other hand, a square40 or rectangle is only four points, or about 80 bytes. Consequently,41
  • 93. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-62 digital units draw objective and position areas using squares instead of1 the traditional goose egg graphics to reduce file size, speed2 transmission times, and reduce the volume of digital traffic on the3 tactical internet.4 Boundaries5 Current doctrine establishes that boundaries are used to define a unit’s6 area of responsibility and to act as restrictive fire control measures to prevent7 fratricide. With units conducting noncontiguous operations in expanded8 battlespace and with the capabilities of automated situational awareness and9 digital systems, the manner in which boundaries are used is changing. Digital10 units may use boundaries to convey the general operational concept and to11 generally define a unit’s AO. Frequently, the boundaries are not drawn12 relative to identifiable terrain, often because it is easier to create and transmit13 the overlays that way, and because situational awareness allows for easier14 tracking and visibility of friendly units. This works relatively well at echelons15 above brigade, but at brigade and below, units can experience problems when16 they try to clear and coordinate fires and positions. To the maximum extent17 possible, keep boundaries along identifiable terrain for the purpose of clearing18 fires and preventing fratricide. Remember that there may be elements on the19 battlefield that do not have FBCB2 or whose system is inoperative, forcing20 them to operate with traditional analog graphics and FM radios.21 Phase Lines22 Like boundaries, the use of phase lines (PL) is altered by digital system23 capabilities. PLs are primarily used for coordinating the movement of forces24 and for reporting locations. With automated situational awareness, the need25 for PLs is almost eliminated. Digital units rarely use PLs, which eases26 creation/transmission of overlays and reduces screen clutter. Again,27 consideration must be given to C2 of units that do not have FBCB2. If the28 squadron includes PLs in its graphics, the troop should include those in its29 overlays to ensure they are known and can be referenced if required during the30 course of operations. The troop commander should consider using additional31 PLs only if it will assist in controlling the unit or if he has subordinate32 elements without FBCB2.33 Terrain Index Reference System/Grid Index Reference System34 Terrain index reference system (TIRS) is a numbered reference point35 drawn relative to identifiable terrain. Graphically it is usually a cross with a36 number. Some units may use TIRS in lieu of most other graphics. This works37 well in digital units, since TIRS overlays are easily created and transmitted38 and screen clutter is minimized. FRAGOs can be given quickly and easily39 with great clarity using TIRS. Additionally, TIRS can function as a fire40 support overlay if it is created with that in mind, again reducing screen clutter41 and the number of overlays that must be created and transmitted. The system42
  • 94. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-63 is somewhat limited in utility when working over very large areas or in1 complex and urban terrain.2 Grid index reference system (GIRS) is shown by a tick mark located on a3 grid line intersection. Each point is given a designator of one letter and two4 numbers, such as X56, placed in the upper right quadrant of the tick mark.5 GIRS point designation is SOP, and units determine which letters they will6 use. They may designate specific letters for specific unit sectors or AO. The7 GIRS point is then recorded as X56, located at PA2450 (four-digit grid).8 TIRS/GIRS point-to-point references designate kilometers. For example,9 500 meters is given as “POINT FIVE,” 1,000 meters as “ONE,” and 3,50010 meters as “THREE POINT FIVE.”11 For shifts from the TIRS/GIRS point, use cardinal directions instead of12 left, right, up, or down. Using TIRS/GIRS, “FROM X-RAY FIVE SIX--13 EAST ONE POINT SEVEN—NORTH POINT SEVEN” translates to “From14 the tick mark for TIRS/GIRS point X56, shift east 1,700 meters and north 70015 meters.” When each TIRS/GIRS point is placed on a four-digit grid16 intersection, the use of shifts makes the TIRS/GIRS as accurate as the six-17 digit grid system. For an example of a GIRS point in use, refer to Figure 2-11.18 19 Figure 2-11. Placing GIRS on the map.20 21 22 The higher headquarters normally issues the TIRS/GIRS to use for the23 operation as early as possible, perhaps with the warning order. The24 TIRS/GIRS list should be issued to elements as an annex to a written OPORD.25 26
  • 95. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-64 The unit should designate four to six TIRS/GIRS points in each 10-1 kilometer square. The TIRS/GIRS is normally sufficient for the troop to2 operate; however, if the troop designates additional TIRS/GIRS, it should3 always ensure only brigade/squadron TIRS/GIRS are referenced in its4 communications with higher headquarters.5 6 TIRS/GIRS are used routinely to control combat operations. Use them—7 • To identify BPs and to pass out control measures (such as LDs, PLs,8 and boundaries) quickly.9 • To report friendly unit locations.10 Passing control measures, such as BPs, sector boundaries, and PLs, are11 quick and accurate using TIRS.12 13 Figure 2-12 shows BP B22. A troop commander could report “TROOP14 ESTABLISHED VICINITY ALFA ZERO SEVEN.” To be more precise, he15 should report “TROOP BRAVO ESTABLISHED ALFA ZERO SEVEN16 WITH RED AT FROM ALFA ZERO SEVEN EAST POINT THREE—17 NORTH POINT FIVE—WHITE AT FROM ALFA ZERO SEVEN WEST18 POINT THREE—NORTH POINT EIGHT—BLUE AT FROM ALFA ZERO19 SEVEN EAST ONE POINT NINE—NORTH ONE POINT NINE—TO20 FROM ALFA ZERO SEVEN WEST POINT NINE—NORTH ONE POINT21 SEVEN—AND GREEN AT FROM ALFA ZERO SEVEN EAST ONE22 POINT ZERO—NORTH POINT FIVE.” In the second transmission, the troop23 commander gives the precise location of the center of mass for all his platoons:24 red, white, blue, and green represent the 1st, 2d, 3d, and 4th platoons.25 26 27 Figure 2-12. Reporting location using TIRS.28 29 Using this transmission, the brigade/squadron commander orders Troop B30 to occupy a BP that is not on the troop commander’s map: “BRAVO SIX SIX31 OCCUPY A BP EXTENDING FROM ALFA ZERO EIGHT WEST POINT32
  • 96. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-65 SEVEN—SOUTH ONE POINT ZERO—TO FROM ALFA ZERO EIGHT1 EAST POINT SIX—SOUTH POINT FIVE—ORIENT NORTHEAST.”2 3 Figure 2-13 shows how the brigade/squadron commander can quickly4 establish new phase lines and boundaries between troops.5 6 7 Figure 2-13. Establish graphic control measures using TIRS.8 9 10 The brigade/squadron commander can transmit a new boundary between11 troops B and C by radio: “BRAVO SIX SIX AND CHARLIE SIX SIX12 BOUNDARY IS FROM DELTA EIGHT ZERO EAST POINT NINE—13 NORTH POINT EIGHT—TO FROM DELTA NINE TWO EAST TWO—14 SOUTH THREE—TO FROM DELTA NINE TWO EAST ONE POINT15 NINE—SOUTH POINT ONE.”16 17 PL SPUR can be sent as “PL SPUR IS FROM DELTA NINE TWO18 WEST POINT NINE—TO FROM DELTA NINE TWO EAST FIVE POINT19 THREE—NORTH POINT SEVEN.”20 21 Color-Coding22 Current graphics doctrine defines what colors to use in depicting certain23 activities or elements. For example, friendly graphics are always in blue or24 black. But with the variety of colors available in digital systems, greater25 clarity can be achieved by expanding beyond the current doctrinal definitions.26 In a digital system, greater clarity and ease of use can be achieved using27 multiple colors. For example, the brigade may portray each subordinate task28 force’s graphics in a different color and the graphics for the troop in another.29 The troop commander may elect to use white for the first scout platoon and30
  • 97. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-66 blue for the second. STRIKER graphics could be in gray. Templated threat1 graphics might be in purple while actual identified threat could be depicted in2 red. Whatever color scheme is used, it must be standardized across the3 squadron.4 Filter Settings5 FBCB2 has different filter settings for the depiction of red and blue6 elements in the situational awareness picture. The filter settings are7 essentially based on time and serve as an indicator of how long an icon has8 been in the same location. Operators set times at which an icon will go stale,9 get old, and then be purged. An icon will begin to fade as it goes stale, fade10 further at the old setting, and then be eliminated from the display at the purge11 time. For all elements to have a common picture, these filter settings must be12 the same on all platforms and be defined in troop SOPs.13 14 An example setting for blue situational awareness is for the system to15 update every 50 meters of platform movement, for the icon to go stale after 2016 minutes of being stationary, become old after 6 hours, then be purged at 1817 hours. Obviously if the unit is going to be static for an extended period, the18 settings should be for longer times.19 20 Red situational awareness settings should be based on the type of21 operation the threat is executing. If they are attacking, the stale and purge22 settings should be fairly short. This helps reduce having a false picture of the23 threat and prompts personnel to frequently update the threat SPOTREP. Table24 2-1 show a sample set of standard settings.25 Table 2-1. Standard settings.26 Mission Stale Old Purge Counterrecon 20 min 40 min 1 hour Recon 1 hour 2 hour 4 hours Threat Attack 10 min 20 min 1 hour Threat Defense 1 hour 2 hour 4 hours 27 Settings that are too short will require constant regeneration of28 SPOTREPs. If the settings are too long, the picture will become obsolete and29 misleading unless the threat remains stationary. As the threat transitions from30 offensive to defensive operations (or vice versa), a net call should be made31 from squadron/brigade level to transition to the appropriate standard SOP32 settings. Again, if all elements are to have a common situational picture,33 everyone must apply standard situational awareness filter settings. In stability34 operations and support operations, the times may be increased to maintain35 situational awareness of factional activity over a longer period of time.36
  • 98. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-67 Creating Red Situational Awareness1 The hardest and most critical aspect of creating the situational awareness2 picture is creating the picture of the threat. It starts with an observer3 identifying a threat element, then creating and transmitting a digital4 SPOTREP. The SPOTREP must be as accurate as possible in order for the5 intelligence picture at troop and higher levels to be correct, and to achieve the6 appropriate analysis and decisions. When transmitted, the text of the report7 will be sent to all the platforms in the address group. It will also create a red8 icon that will be displayed on all platforms in the brigade network.9 10 When the SPOTREP is transmitted, it should be addressed to a multicast11 group that includes the squadron S2. This not only keeps him informed but12 also automatically enters the report into the ASAS database where it becomes13 part of the higher echelon intelligence picture.14 15 As the threat moves or his strength changes, the observer must update the16 SPOTREP. A key point is that only the originator of the SPOTREP or the S217 can delete an icon from the entire network. To update the report, the observer18 deletes the original report, which will delete the icon across the network, and19 then he generates a new SPOTREP. Ideally, an observer maintains20 responsibility for keeping that report and its associated icon updated and21 accurate until the threat is eliminated or he is forced to move. In some22 situations, an observer will pass observation and responsibility to another23 observer, a following scout element for example. That handover should be24 made only after the new element verifies it has the threat under observation.25 When that occurs, the initial observer deletes his report and icon, and the new26 observer initiates a new SPOTREP, assuming responsibility for observation27 and reporting.28 The S2 may delete icons from the network picture as he gets redundant29 reports or gets new information that allows him to refine the threat picture.30 He also can create a threat picture in ASAS, using all the information sources31 available to him plus the FBCB2 reports. He can send this ASAS picture to32 all FBCB2-equipped platforms.33 NOTE: This ASAS report will add to, not replace, the existing red34 situational awareness shown on FBCB2. This can create confusion35 and a false picture of the threat situation. To prevent this, settings36 on FBCB2 for threat situational awareness allow an operator to37 select only the FBCB2 reported icons, only the ASAS-transmitted38 picture, or both. At troop level and below, the best technique is to39 use the FBCB2 SPOTREP setting, and occasionally switch on the40 ASAS picture to check for additional information, and then turn41 the ASAS picture off.42 43
  • 99. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-68 Fratricide1 FBCB2 significantly contributes to fratricide reduction by allowing all2 platforms to have visibility of FBCB2-equipped forces in their network.3 Vehicle commanders can quickly check their displays to see if friendly forces4 are operating in an area as they prepare to execute direct or indirect fires.5 However, there are some limitations to the system that operators must take6 into consideration.7 First, not all systems will be equipped with FBCB2 or have operational8 systems. Also, elements operating outside the squadron’s communication9 architecture will not be visible on FBCB2. When leaders know there are10 elements without FBCB2 or with inoperable FBCB2 in the area, they should11 alert their soldiers to that situation. For example, the troop might be executing12 a rearward passage of lines when some of the unit’s FBCB2 or associated13 radios become inoperative. In this situation, troop leaders should alert the unit14 that they are passing through and that some platforms are not able to transmit15 situational awareness data. They should identify where they are and what16 route they are returning on. This information should then be distributed to the17 appropriate elements in the unit being passed through.18 Second, there is no dismounted system for FBCB2. This is critical for the19 troop when its dismounted observers are out, particularly as units begin calling20 for artillery fire. Fire support elements may check digital displays and see no21 blue icons in the target area, and be unaware that dismounted soldiers are22 operating in the area. FBCB2’s situational awareness display may be used for23 denying fires, but not for clearing fires. FBCB2 can speed the clearance of fires24 by quickly identifying if there are FBCB2-equipped elements in the target area.25 If a blue icon is in a target area, obviously artillery should not be fired there.26 The absence of a blue icon should not be the basis for assuming the area is free27 of friendly forces. Dismounted elements, elements without operational FBCB2,28 or elements that are not part of the squadron network could be present.29 30 Third, depending on the blue situational awareness filter setting, an31 operator may not have all blue units displayed. For example, if the filter32 setting is for display of only armor and infantry elements, the operator will not33 have visibility on all other blue assets such as artillery, air defense, and CSS34 vehicles. The same is true for the echelon filter setting. If only company and35 higher echelons are selected, the operator will not have visibility on the36 majority of the systems on the battlefield.37 Fourth, the nature of tactics and capabilities is constantly evolving, with38 an increase in maneuvering forces and the use of rapidly emplaced obstacles.39 These changes can increase the chances of obstacle fratricide. FBCB2 can40 help reduce these chances if CPs keep obstacle overlays current and rapidly41 disseminate changes, and if operators keep current, critical overlays posted on42 their systems. Transmission of updated overlays should be accompanied by43
  • 100. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-69 net-wide FM alerts to ensure system operators know new obstacle information1 has been disseminated and they are to display the new overlay(s).2 Finally, the increase in maneuvering forces, the increased forward3 presence and maneuvering of artillery units, and the decrease in control4 graphics being employed can lead to fratricide incidents. To avoid such5 incidents, operators must utilize their FBCB2 screens to track friendly6 elements and conduct the essential FM cross-talk to clear fires and maintain7 their total situational awareness.8 SECTION V. TACTICAL MOVEMENT9 The troop commander must consider all aspects of the three-dimensional10 battle space and use standard control measures to organize his assets in the11 operational environment within his area of operation. The operational12 environment may be linear, but for the troop, the environment often times will13 be noncontiguous (see Figure 2-14).14 15 16 17 CONTIGUOUS NONCONTIGUOUS Adjacent, subordinate unit areas of operations share boundaries. In this case, the higher headquarters allocated all assigned areas of operations to subordinate units. Subordinate units receive areas of operations that do not share boundaries. The higher headquarters retains responsibilities for the unassigned portion of its area of operations. 18 Figure 2-14. Contiguous vs. noncontiguous environment.19
  • 101. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-70 During tactical operations, the troop’s AO may be spread over extended1 distances that do not support close troop formations. Due to this noncontiguous2 operational environment, the troop will be forced to conduct decentralized3 operations. As a result it will conduct nontraditional troop movements that are4 characterized by platoons being forced to conduct missions that may or may not5 be mutually supportive. Many times the platoons within the troop will be6 moving in different directions. Some platoons may be stationary (conducting7 surveillance) while others are conducting active reconnaissance missions. Some8 elements of the troop may be conducting dismounted operations while others9 are mounted. During a majority of the time, the bulk of the troop will be10 conducting dismounted movement. Maximum control measures are a must to11 manage this type of movement. The troop must ensure to place the mortars in a12 position that best supports the majority or high-risk platoon missions.13 14 NOTE: See Chapter 3 for discussion on tactical employment.15 16 17 FORMATIONS18 The troop commander and the XO in the troop CP should place themselves in19 the best position to support the entire troop mission. This may require separation20 of the commander and the CP by tremendous distances. The troop must make the21 necessary coordination with friendly elements within their AO as well as adjacent22 units. The troop combat trains is placed in a position that best supports the23 majority of the missions or in a position to support the more high-risk missions.24 The troop must endeavor to maximize the use of all reconnaissance assets as it25 moves. This will require additional support from the squadron as well as ISR26 feeds from higher through FBCB2 (see Figure 2-15).27
  • 102. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-71 1 Figure 2-15. Example of nontraditional troop formation.2 3 During traditional linear operations or as part of squadron noncontiguous4 operations that support a troop formation, the troop will normally move in one5 of three movement formations: troop column, troop line, or troop vee.6 7
  • 103. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-72 Troop Column1 Use the troop column when moving on a designated route, when speed is2 essential, and when contact with the threat is not expected. This formation3 moves the troop quickly and efficiently from one place to another. Control of4 the troop while moving in column is eased, but the troop is vulnerable to5 threat air or ground attack.6 The troop usually moves at a designated speed and with a set distance7 between vehicles when moving in column formation. The march speed and8 distance between vehicles are designated by the troop SOP, based on the9 situation. (See Chapter 5 for more discussion of column formation.)10 11 Troop Line12 The troop line formation is used during reconnaissance operations when13 the threat is minimal and speed is not essential. This formation is used to14 maximize troop frontage. It utilizes dismounts and other ISR assets scouting15 ahead of the troop to make contact with the threat or other reconnaissance16 objectives, with the vehicles following the dismounts and providing17 overwatch. The vehicles trail the dismounted scouts at a distance to prevent18 compromising their reconnaissance and to maintain stealth. This may be19 within LRAS3 observation range or a terrain feature behind (METT-TC). This20 formation may also be used when conducting defensive or retrograde21 operations (see Figure 2-16).22
  • 104. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-73 1 Figure 2-16. Recce troop line.2 Troop Vee3 The troop vee formation is used to conduct reconnaissance when threat4 contact is likely or during multidimensional aspects of reconnaissance (see5 Figure 2-17). The purpose of the vee formation is to provide reconnaissance6 forward, while allowing a trailing reconnaissance element to conduct more7 detailed or specific information collection. The trail element may also be the8 reaction force to contact (physical or nonhostile) of the lead elements.9 Missions for the trail element may include rear security for the main body,10 route reconnaissance, or detailed HUMINT collection by the CI teams (see11 Figure 2-18). The vee is used in smaller-scale contingencies or major theaters12 of war to create flexibility for the commander with a platoon/section to react13 to contact (see Figure 2-19).14 15
  • 105. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-74 1 Figure 2-17. Recce troop vee route reconnaissance focused in a low threat2 environment.3 4 5
  • 106. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-75 1 Figure 2-18. Recce troop vee route reconnaissance focused in medium threat2 environment (one route).3 4
  • 107. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-76 1 Figure 2-19. BRT troop vee - route reconnaissance.2 3 4 Personnel Placement in Movement Formations5 The troop commander usually places himself where he can best control the6 troop’s actions. Usually this is trailing the lead platoon or the element he7 expects to make contact. He must determine where he can best see the8 battlefield without getting decisively engaged and losing focus on the troop9 fight. In nontraditional formations, the troop commander may place himself10 with the main effort or collocate with the troop TOC to facilitate command11 and control.12 The XO is usually located at the troop CP controlling its movement and13 reporting information to higher. The commander can also position the XO14 with the supporting effort to assist him in command and control of the troop.15 In a multidimensional reconnaissance environment (see Chapter 3), the troop16
  • 108. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 2-77 commander may place the XO with the lead platoons conducting zone1 reconnaissance while he controls their movement from the trail platoon and2 assists with the specific HUMINT mission of meeting local leaders.3 The troop 1SG and the medics usually follow the troop’s trail elements by4 one kilometer or terrain feature. The 1SG controls the medics while they are5 operating in the troop’s AO. If the threat warrants the use of a trail platoon6 providing security during reconnaissance, the 1SG should position himself7 between the lead platoons and the rear security platoon.8 Position the mortars in or near the center of the troop zone/sector to9 provide indirect-fire support across the troop front. Keep them positioned to10 fire about two-thirds and no less than one-third of their maximum effective11 range (about 3 to 5 kilometers, terrain dependent) beyond the scouts, so the12 scouts can engage threat forces at long range with indirect fires.13 NOTE: Line of sight is the determining factor in range forward of the scouts.14 In densely wooded terrain, the scout’s visibility may be only 100 to15 200 meters forward of their front line trace, so mortar range need not16 always be 3,000 meters forward of the scouts.17 18
  • 109. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-1 CHAPTER 31 2 3 RECONNAISSANCE/SURVEILLANCE4 5 For the recce troop and the BRT, reconnaissance and surveillance are6 operations undertaken to obtain information by visual observation, tactical7 questioning, or other detection methods related to—8 • The activities and resources of an enemy or threat.9 • The meteorology, hydrographic, or geographic characteristics of a10 particular area.11 • The infrastructure and social facet of an area.12 Rarely will the troop fight for this information. The troop will primarily13 use passive surveillance, technical means, and human interaction to gain14 information. The primary missions the troop will conduct are area, route, and15 zone reconnaissance.16 Reconnaissance and surveillance produce information that assists in17 developing situational awareness (see Chapter 1, Section I) needed by the18 brigade commander to support his command, control, and decision making.19 Reconnaissance is a focused collection effort performed prior to, in advance20 of, and during military operations to provide the commander with information21 he can use to confirm or modify his concept and to make decisions. The22 reconnaissance troop is the squadron/brigade commander’s principal23 reconnaissance organization. The troop conducts surveillance as a primary24 task in support of its reconnaissance mission(s).25 26 CONTENTS27 Page28 SECTION I. Fundamentals..........................................................3-229 SECTION II. Reconnaissance Planning........................................3-1330 SECTION III. Area Reconnaissance ..............................................3-3831 SECTION IV. Route Reconnaissance.............................................3-5432 SECTION V. Zone Reconnaissance ..............................................3-5933 SECTION VI. Surveillance Fundamentals, Capabilities, and34 Limitations............................................................3-7035 SECTION VII. Surveillance Planning, Methods, and36 Considerations......................................................3-7237 38 39 40
  • 110. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-2 Asymmetric effects occur when one opponent takes the lead by initiating operations against which the other opponent cannot respond effectively due to dissimilar values, organization, training, or equipment. The troop commander has an increased number of ISR tools available for1 executing reconnaissance and surveillance operations. The troop’s ability to2 fuse these assets into a synchronized reconnaissance effort helps compound3 the capabilities of each asset. Capitalizing on the strengths of a particular4 system mitigates the weaknesses of another system. Tactical unmanned aerial5 vehicles (TUAV), intelligence sensors, and satellite tracking systems all6 contribute to the synchronized ISR effort; however, the best reconnaissance7 tool remains the individual scouts. They provide detailed reconnaissance and8 are not as vulnerable to threat spoofing techniques. Scouts can assess changes9 in the environment, allowing them to adapt and execute within the10 commander’s intent.11 The troop’s ability to assess the situation in its AO and its link to the12 intelligence/analysis at the squadron/brigade (squadron S2, brigade S2, MI13 Company) helps the troop anticipate events within the brigade’s AO and area14 of interest. The recce troop is the brigade combat team (BCT) and RSTA15 squadron commanders’ most valuable and effective reconnaissance and16 surveillance asset.17 18 19 SECTION I. FUNDAMENTALS20 21 22 RECONNAISSANCE OPERATIONAL ENVIRONMENT23 24 To date, the Army has focused its efforts on traditional combat—open,25 force-on-force, and symmetrical enemy formations. The standard26 reconnaissance approach to this environment has been simply to focus on27 gaining information on the enemy and terrain. The Army's thinking must28 expand to include nontraditional environmental variables that could influence29 its operations. In the future, the Army won't habitually face conventional30 forces in open areas. The millennium with the information age has brought31 upon the Army the specter of asymmetric33 warfare—a strategy in which a weak opponent35 successfully engages a stronger opponent by37 using a variety of offsets for gaining advantage39 in hopes of achieving its objectives and goals.41 The asymmetric threats include regional43 military forces, paramilitary forces, guerrillas45 and insurgents, terrorists, criminal groups, and47 certain civilian groups and individuals. Threat49 asymmetric approaches involve information operations, weapons of mass50 destruction, hugging complex (mainly urban) terrain, civilian involvement and51 evasive attacks against US forces and soldiers, to name a few (see Chapter 1,52 Section I).53
  • 111. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-3 The troop must be ready to concentrate on both the traditional approach to1 reconnaissance of gathering information on enemy forces and terrain as well2 as focus on the asymmetric aspects of an operational environment that impact3 military operations.4 Additionally, of all the environments in which the Army may be called5 upon to conduct operations, the urban environment confronts commanders6 with a combination of difficulties rarely found in other environments. The7 distinct characteristics of the urban environment are primarily a function of8 the following factors:9 • The increasing size and global prevalence of urban areas.10 • The combinations of manmade features and supporting infrastructure11 superimposed on the existing natural terrain.12 • The density of civilians in close proximity to combat forces.13 14 Of these, the third, and the human dimension it represents, is potentially15 the most important and perplexing for commanders to understand and16 evaluate. The urban environment is, first of all, a human environment. That17 makes it different from all other forms of environment. An urban environment18 is not defined by its structures or systems but by the people who compose it.19 An urban environment reacts and interacts with an army in a way that no20 natural environment could.21 22 Although complex, understanding the urban terrain is relatively23 straightforward in comparison to comprehending the multifaceted nature of24 urban society. Military operations often require Army forces to operate in25 close proximity to a high density of civilians and their presence, attitudes,26 actions, and needs affect the conduct of operations. As urban areas increase in27 size, they become less and less homogenous; therefore, commanders must28 understand and account for the characteristics of a diverse population whose29 beliefs may vary based on many factors (see Society and Infrastructure30 subparagraphs in the Focus of Reconnaissance paragraph below). The31 behavior of civilian populations within an urban area is dynamic and poses a32 special challenge to commanders conducting military operations. Civilian33 populations continually influence, to varying degrees, military operations34 conducted within an area of operation.35 36 The center of gravity during a military operation, particularly in stability37 operations and support operations, may be the civilian inhabitants themselves.38 The side that enjoys the support of the population retains many advantages.39 To gain and/or retain the support of the population, commanders must first40 understand (through reconnaissance) the complex nature and character of the41 urban society and its infrastructure. Second, they must understand and42 accept that every military action (or inaction) may influence, positively or43 negatively, the relationship between the urban population and Army forces,44 and by extension, mission success. With this awareness, commanders45
  • 112. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-4 visualize decisions they must make, plan operations, implement programs,1 and/or take immediate action to maintain support of a friendly populace, or2 neutralize or gain the support of hostile or neutral factions.3 4 Understanding how operations affect the urban society (and vice versa)5 normally begins with reconnaissance of the society and its infrastructure.6 These two elements allow commanders to determine the proximity and7 numbers of civilians as well as the infrastructure in relation to decisive points8 within their area of operations. Commanders can then decide whether civilian9 presence and/or density represent a significant risk to the accomplishment of10 their mission. Through reconnaissance of the society and infrastructure, the11 commander then can visualize and decide what actions he must take to12 influence and/or exploit the society and its infrastructure. It should be13 emphasized that the society may assist friendly military operations by14 providing information on threat forces or by supporting friendly forces with15 its infrastructure resources. If civilians are the primary focus of the operation,16 as in many stability and support operations, this same analysis may help to17 determine the decisive points.18 19 In the broader mission of providing information for situational20 understanding of the operational environment, the troop must direct its21 reconnaissance on a myriad of dimensions—demographics, political, social,22 cultural, economic, infrastructures, open terrain, and complex terrain—as well23 as military factors. This multidimensional reconnaissance approach expands24 on the traditional focus of reconnaissance by concentrating on additional25 asymmetric threats, urban environment, society, infrastructure, and other26 aspects that can influence military operations. There are a myriad of ISR27 assets (see Chapter 6) that fused at the lowest level to assist in this28 multidimensional approach to reconnaissance. Multidimensional29 reconnaissance is not a mission; it is an expansion of the focus of30 reconnaissance as well as the fusion of ISR assets that will direct information31 collection by the troop for the purpose of fulfilling information requirements32 for the brigade. In order for the troop to make contributions to the brigade,33 they must clearly understand the focus of reconnaissance in its operational34 environment. See Section III for more information on multidimensional35 reconnaissance.36 37 38 FOCUS OF RECONNAISSANCE39 40 Based on the future operational environment, reconnaissance is focused on41 more then just the enemy and terrain. The focus defines on what the troop42 needs to concentrate its information gathering and allows the troop43 commander to select which critical tasks must be accomplished and with what44 asset(s). Focus, when applied to the fundamentals of reconnaissance,45 enhances the troop’s ability to fully understand its environment and conduct a46
  • 113. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-5 more detailed, comprehensive reconnaissance and surveillance mission.1 Understanding the multiple dimensions of the focus of reconnaissance is2 paramount in the troop’s understanding of the operational environment.3 Reconnaissance focus should be centered on reducing the unknowns of the4 environment based on the intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB)5 process and integrally connected to and fulfilling the commander’s CCIR. The6 focus of reconnaissance is characterized in these broader terms: enemy/threat,7 social/human (demographics), infrastructure, and terrain.8 9 Enemy/Threat10 11 The troop no longer faces a single, monolithic, or well-defined threat.12 During the cold war, planning centered on confronting numerically superior13 armored opposing forces in Europe, the Far East, or Southwest Asia. Today’s14 reconnaissance units must be able to conduct operations across the range of15 military operations (major theater of war [MTW], smaller-scale contingencies16 [SSC], and stability operations and support operations) against threats ranging17 in size from major regional powers to asymmetric threats. These may include18 conventional threat forces, insurgents, paramilitary forces, guerrillas, criminal19 groups, and certain civilian groups and individuals. Because of the diversity of20 the threat, the IPB process becomes even more important at the brigade,21 squadron, and troop levels. No longer will the threat always fit into a neat22 time-distance scenario. Potential adversaries may use a variety of doctrine,23 tactics, and equipment. It is extremely important to quickly identify who the24 enemy/threat is in an operational area. This will continually be the major25 focus of reconnaissance for the troop. However, reconnaissance focus may be26 the identification of the unknown threat as well. That is why the27 understanding of the society and infrastructures of an area are also an28 important focus for reconnaissance.29 30 Society (Social/Human Demographics)31 32 The focus of reconnaissance may be the society of a given area. Gaining33 an awareness of how the society impacts military operations and how military34 operations impact the local society may be critical to the commander in order35 for him and his stuff to make decisions.36 37 The center of gravity during operations may be the civilian inhabitants38 themselves. To gain and/or retain the support of the population, commanders39 must first understand the complex nature and character of the society. Second,40 they must understand and accept that every military action (or inaction) may41 influence, positively or negatively, the relationship between the urban42 population and Army forces, and by extension, mission success. Without the43 support of the society or understanding its needs, the society may become a44 threat to the brigade/military operations. With this awareness, commanders45 can plan operations, implement programs, and/or take immediate action to46
  • 114. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-6 maintain support of a friendly populace, or neutralize or gain the support of1 hostile or neutral factions. Understanding how operations affect the society2 (and vice versa) normally begins with gaining information on the size,3 location, and composition of the society. Having understanding of the society4 (gained by reconnaissance) gives the commander vital information to shape5 the operational environment.6 7 The troop must be aware of the demographics in its area of operation. The8 traditional reconnaissance is mainly focused on conventional forces. Both9 traditional threat and unconventional threat military forces impact the society.10 Threat conventional and unconventional forces are still a part of11 understanding the civilian demographics; understanding how threat operations12 affect the society (and vice versa) will have an impact on military operations.13 The troop must understand the different cultural and economic backgrounds of14 the people it encounters. The troop must clearly understand the threat—be it15 conventional forces, paramilitary, terrorist, or organized crime—that16 undermines the stability of the society. The troop leadership must become17 familiar with the factional leaders, such as mayors, police chiefs, and local18 military commanders. These relationships, while important in stability19 operations or support operations, are also critical in smaller-scale20 contingencies and major theaters of war. The troop should be very concerned21 with understanding the needs of the local populace. Refugee situations are a22 part of the demographic makeup of an environment. Understanding the full23 dimension of demographic framework of a society is the basis of the24 characteristics of an environment and determines much of the reconnaissance25 objectives/focus.26 27 Elements of a society may itself be a threat to the brigade. A mob28 demonstrating against US military presence could impact military operations29 and consequently be a specific focus for reconnaissance. Refugees clogging30 routes the brigade may want to use for combat operations may pose a threat. A31 focus may then be to identify these groups to allow the brigade to make a32 decision to use non-lethal effects to deal with the problem. The examples are33 endless, but these should indicate how society-focused reconnaissance will34 help the brigade shape its operational environment.35 36 The following are examples of social/human dimensions of37 reconnaissance focus on an AO:38 • Population demographics: Race, sex, age, religion, language, national39 origin, tribe, clan, class, party affiliation, education, or any significant40 social grouping.41 • History.42 • Government.43 • Factional leaders.44 - Mayors.45
  • 115. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-7 - Local police chief.1 - Local political leaders.2 - Local military commanders.3 - Local religious leaders.4 • Nongovernmental organization.5 • Economy.6 • Media.7 - Organizations.8 - Reporters.9 - Publications.10 - Broadcasts.11 Infrastructure12 The infrastructures are those systems that support the inhabitants and their13 economy and government. Destroying, controlling, or protecting vital parts of14 the infrastructure can isolate the threat from potential sources of support.15 Because these systems are inextricably linked, destroying or disrupting any16 portion of the urban infrastructure can have a cascading effect (either17 intentional or unintentional) on the other elements of the infrastructure.18 To successfully operate in an area, the troop must understand the local19 infrastructure. The troop must understand it physically in terms of utilities,20 transportation, and food availability as well as the many other products that21 make a community run. The troop must understand the infrastructure22 financially. What is the monetary base of the different communities, the23 income demographics, and the black market trade? Additionally, who can24 provide the friendly force with CSS needs? The troop must also understand25 the local community, political, and governmental structure. This includes26 religious, military, and paramilitary, such as local security and police forces27 that work independently from one another. The troop must develop a general28 understanding of these organizations—how they fit into the community at29 large and how they relate to one another. A reconnaissance mission focused30 on infrastructure might look at these dimensions—31 • Communications. (Wireless, telegraphs, radios, television, computers,32 newspapers, magazines, etc.)33 • Transportation and distribution. (Highways and railways [to include34 bridges, tunnels, ferries, and fords]; cableways and tramways; ports,35 harbors, and inland waterways; airports, seaplane stations, and36 heliports; mass transit; and the trucking companies and delivery37 services that facilitate the movement of supplies, equipment, and38 people.)39 • Energy. (System that provides the power to run the urban area and40 consists of the industries that produce, store, and distribute electricity,41
  • 116. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-8 coal, oil, and natural gas. This area also encompasses alternate energy1 sources such as nuclear, solar, hydroelectric, and geothermal.)2 • Commerce. (Area includes business and financial centers [stores,3 shops, restaurants, marketplaces, banks, trading centers, and business4 offices] and outlying industrial/agricultural features [strip malls, farms,5 food storage centers, and mills] as well as environmentally sensitive6 areas [mineral extraction areas and chemical/biological facilities].)7 • Human services. (Includes hospitals, water supply systems, waste and8 hazardous material storage and processing, emergency services9 [police, fire, rescue, and emergency medical services], and10 governmental services [embassies, diplomatic organizations,11 management of vital records, welfare systems, and the judicial12 system]. The loss of any of these often has an immediate,13 destabilizing, and life-threatening impact on the inhabitants.)14 Terrain15 16 The best terrain analysis is based on a focused reconnaissance of the area17 of operation. Identifying the gaps in knowledge of the terrain that a map18 analysis cannot satisfy is the first step in terrain-focused reconnaissance. The19 troop must see the terrain as it pertains to friendly forces as well as threat20 military operations. Terrain reconnaissance includes the effect of weather on21 the military aspects of the terrain. Terrain-focused reconnaissance evaluates22 the military aspects of the terrain (OCOKA) and provides valuable23 information back to the commander to support his decisions. The side that can24 best understand and exploit the effects of terrain has the best chance of25 success.26 27 To date, cavalry and reconnaissance forces have not focused on urban28 terrain. In fact, doctrine has supported and focused on the identification of29 bypasses around urban terrain. Because of the nature of asymmetric warfare,30 threat elements will further exploit terrain to try and gain an advantage over31 US forces. In the future the troop must become more familiar with the aspects32 of complex and urban terrain. The troop must also see terrain not only in its33 traditional role but also as it might apply in a stability, support, and SSC34 environment. In a stability, support, or SSC environment, key terrain may be35 a religious or cultural monument, or an historic geographical boundary or36 town.37 38 Urban areas include some of the world's most difficult terrain in which to39 conduct military operations. Unlike deserts, forests, and jungles, which40 confront the commander with a limited variety of uniform, recurring terrain41 features, urban operations are conducted within an ever-changing mix of42 natural and manmade features. Urban areas vary immensely depending on43 their history, the cultures of their inhabitants, their economic development, the44 local climate, available building materials, and many other factors. This45
  • 117. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-9 The reconnaissance objective must be focused at a minimum on: • Enemy/threat. • Society. • Infrastructure. • And/or Terrain feature. • Control measure. The troop and higher headquarter must endeavor to link the reconnaissance object and the focus of reconnaissance to: • Commander’s critical information requirements. • And/or filling voids in the IPB. • And/or supporting targeting. variety exists not only among different urban areas but also within any1 particular area. Urban areas present an extraordinary blend of horizontal,2 vertical, interior, exterior, and subterranean forms superimposed upon the3 landscape's natural relief, drainage, and vegetation. The troop must become4 familiar with conducting terrain reconnaissance and evaluating the military5 aspects of urban terrain (OCOKA) as much as forest, desert, and jungle6 terrain. Reconnaissance leaders must become familiar with urban IPB found7 in FM 2-01.3 [FM 34-130], Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield, and in8 FM 3-06 [FM 90-10], Urban Operations.9 10 FUNDAMENTALS OF RECONNAISSANCE11 Successful reconnaissance operations are planned and performed with the12 following six fundamentals in mind:13 • Orient on the reconnaissance objective.14 • Maximize reconnaissance assets.15 • Gain and maintain contact.16 • Develop the situation.17 • Report all information rapidly and accurately.18 • Maintain the ability to maneuver freely.19 Orient on the Reconnaissance Objective20 The commander focuses the22 efforts of the unit with a24 reconnaissance objective. This26 objective may be a terrain feature,28 control measure, enemy/threat,30 society, and or the infrastructure32 within an area of operation. During34 the IPB process, the S2 will identify36 additional intelligence requirements38 related to the enemy/threat, society,40 infrastructure and terrain. These42 intelligence requirements combined44 with the commander’s critical46 information requirements48 (CCIR)/priority intelligence50 requirements (PIR) are used as tools52 to direct the reconnaissance efforts54 of the troop. This is where the focus56 of reconnaissance is addressed in order to fill in the gaps of information and57 assist in answering the CCIR. Additionally the troop may orient its58 reconnaissance to support targeting for the squadron/brigade. This is linked to59
  • 118. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-10 higher CCIR or may just support the targeting process. METT-TC, especially1 time, will influence which critical reconnaissance tasks can be executed2 during the conduct of the mission. Reconnaissance efforts may be focused on3 all multidimensional aspects (enemy/threat, society [human demographics],4 terrain, or the infrastructure) of an area. If reconnaissance efforts are oriented5 mainly on a threat force, the commander must specify the terrain and6 maneuverability data for the troop to gather as well as social and infrastructure7 aspects. In a stability or support operations environment, several things might8 reflect the multidimensional reconnaissance objective. In Bosnia, the9 reconnaissance objective was complying with the Dayton Peace Accord, as10 indicated by compliance with inspectors at weapons storage site facilities, the11 disbanding of illegal factional checkpoints, or the absence of police activity in12 the zone of separation.13 14 Maximize Reconnaissance Assets15 Scouts are the “eyes and ears” of the commander. With their digitized16 capabilities, scouts can provide the early warning the brigade commander17 needs to maneuver and apply his combat power as required at points of his18 choosing. Previous reconnaissance doctrine focused on maximum19 reconnaissance forward, which may still be appropriate in many situations;20 but with the increasing likelihood of noncontiguous operations,21 reconnaissance and security operations may be oriented in multiple directions.22 The troop must integrate a wide range of sensors, to include TUAVs and23 ground sensors, to ensure maximum effectiveness and survivability of ground24 scouts (see Figure 3-1). Other assets to assist the troop gain better situational25 awareness include JSTARS/U2 (imagery) and SOF intelligence operations,26 which are fed through the brigade/squadron’s Trojan system to the troop via27 reports on FBCB2. Maximizing reconnaissance is applying the right28 reconnaissance asset to the reconnaissance objective and providing29 redundancy when necessary as well as the ability to maintain contact30 throughout the depth of an OA. In most cases, the entire troop will be required31 to operate along a traditional linear front, but planning must consider the32 troop’s ability to conduct sustained operations in depth. Operating with two33 platoons oriented forward and one trailing platoon oriented rearward may be34 appropriate in some situations. In stability operations, an example would be35 maximum scout and HUMINT assets among the local populace to gather36 information.37 38
  • 119. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-11 1 Figure 3-1. Reconnaissance assets.2 3 Gain and Maintain Contact4 TUAVs provide the scouts maximum standoff range and limit their5 exposure to threat acquisition systems. Contact with the threat should be6 gained through use of the scouts’ long-range acquisition capability rather than7 a chance meeting. Once contact is established, surveillance of the threat force8 is not broken unless reconnaissance handover occurs, higher headquarters9 orders such an action, or the break is IAW higher’s OPORD and commander’s10 intent. The troop plans how to maintain contact with troop assets, but should11 also plan the integration of supporting ISR assets. Gaining and maintaining12 contact in stability operations may require HUMINT assets to maintain13 frequent contact with the local populace and factional leaders.14 Develop the Situation15 Situational awareness throughout the force is a critical aspect of achieving16 information superiority over the threat. Situational awareness includes—17 • A common understanding of the commander’s assessment of the18 situation.19 • The commander’s intent.20 • The commander’s concept of the operation, combined with a clear21 picture of friendly and threat force dispositions and capabilities.22 During reconnaissance operations, situational awareness must be rapidly23 obtained. How this is accomplished is METT-TC dependent. For example,24 the scouts may need time to maneuver or relocate to better observe an NAI or25 to determine the exact size, composition, disposition, and activity of a threat26 force. (A means of maneuvering to gain situational awareness is27 accomplished through well-rehearsed battle drills.) Of greater importance is28 the rapid transmission of information to the troop/squadron TOC. Creating29 the situational awareness picture through digital spot reports is critical to30
  • 120. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-12 providing a common, accurate picture for focusing combat power against the1 threat (also see Chapter 1, Section I).2 Report All Information Rapidly and Accurately3 The squadron/brigade commander bases his planning and tactical4 decisions on the battlefield information obtained through the troop’s5 reconnaissance efforts. Intelligence loses its relevance as it ages. The troop6 must accurately report what it observes in a timely manner. Digitization7 promotes the accuracy of the intelligence information gathered as well as the8 timeliness with which it can be sent. Using FBCB2 and FM, the troop can9 transmit this vital combat information in near-real time. At night and during10 contact, FM radios are used as the primary means of reporting, except for the11 troop CP.12 Maintain the Ability to Maneuver Freely13 14 The troop’s elements are lightly armed and conduct their reconnaissance15 from lightly armored vehicles. They are “scouts” in the truest sense of the16 word and are not capable of surviving protracted engagements with a threat17 force. The scouts must not become decisively engaged; otherwise their18 survivability and ability to maneuver to execute their reconnaissance missions19 are at risk. The layering of ISR assets minimizes chance contact. With the20 precision movement capability offered by FBCB2 and GPS, the recce21 platoons can maximize the use of cover and concealed routes based on their22 pre-mission analysis of the terrain and enemy location/disposition updates.23 24 25 26
  • 121. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-13 SECTION II. RECONNAISSANCE PLANNING1 2 3 PLANNING CONSIDERATIONS4 The purpose of this section is to5 outline the planning, methods, and6 tactical employment of executing7 reconnaissance missions. Critical to8 the troop commander’s ability to9 execute his mission is to clearly10 understand the focus, tempo, and11 engagement criteria of the12 reconnaissance mission. This13 information, labeled Commander’s14 Reconnaissance Guidance, answers15 the three basic questions the troop16 commander needs to know to plan his17 mission and in turn provide guidance18 to the platoon. Focus, tempo, and19 engagement criteria are interrelated.20 From the established focus, the21 commander is able to set the22 appropriate tempo. The tempo will23 link the required reconnaissance tasks24 to the mission time constraints to25 provide the techniques and rate of the26 reconnaissance. The last section is27 linked to the previous two by28 clarifying how the unit will deal with29 contact. Given the focus and tempo, the engagement criteria provide the30 instructions on what the unit is expected to fight and what it is expected to31 hand over to a supporting or follow-on unit. This guidance is an extension of32 the commander’s intent and clarifies the commander’s intent for his33 reconnaissance. This should be received from higher as well as issued to34 subordinates.35 The focus of the reconnaissance allows the commander to determine36 which critical tasks he wants the platoons to accomplish first. It helps him37 prioritize the platoon’s scope of operations to get the information that is most38 important to squadron and brigade operations. In SSC operations the troop39 focus might be terrain-oriented, or threat security force oriented. In stability40 operations the troop might be focused on local populace sentiment, or41 identifying local paramilitary leaders. While all critical tasks have some42 degree of applicability in any given operation, certain ones are more important43 for specific missions, and this has to be clearly articulated at each level.44 COMMANDER’S RECONNAISSANCE GUIDANCE • Focus of the Reconnaissance: − Enemy/Threat. − Society/Human demographics. . − Terrain (bridges, routes, defensible terrain/threat vs enemy). − Infrastructure (political situation, facilities, food distribution). − Which reconnaissance critical tasks are conducted or deleted. • Tempo of the Reconnaissance: − Stealthy or forceful. − Deliberate or rapid. − Aggressive or discreet. − Dismounted or mounted. • Engagement Criteria (if any): − What are the ROE? − What is a troop fight? − What is a recce platoon fight? − What weapon system is used to engage what target type? − What are the non-lethal (HUMINT) engagement criteria?
  • 122. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-14 Given a specified amount of time, the recce platoon accomplishes its specified1 critical tasks then accomplishes other tasks as instructed by the commander.2 3 The tempo of the reconnaissance allows the commander to establish4 associated time requirements, as related to the focus of reconnaissance, with5 planning time, movement formations, and methods, such as dismounted or6 mounted. The commander establishes the tempo by answering several7 questions: Is the troop conducting stealthy or forceful reconnaissance? Is the8 troop reconnaissance deliberate or rapid? Is the reconnaissance aggressive or9 discreet? The recce troop commander must understand the answer to the10 questions relating to tempo and articulate them to his platoons. See Figure 3-2.11 12 13 14 Figure 3-2. Tempo of reconnaissance.15 16 • Deliberate. Operations are slow, detailed, and broad-based. They17 require the accomplishment of numerous tasks. This is a description of18 the degree of completeness required by the commander. Significant19 time must be allocated to conduct a deliberate reconnaissance.20 • Rapid. Operations are fast paced with focus on key pieces of21 information. This type of operation entails a small number of tasks.22 This is a description of the degree of completeness required by the23 commander. It describes reconnaissance operations that must be24 performed in a time-constrained environment.25 • Stealthy. Operations are conducted to minimize chance contact and26 prevent the reconnaissance force from being detected. They are often27 conducted dismounted and require increased allocation of time for28 success. This is a description of the level of covertness required by the29 commander.30 • Forceful. Operations are conducted without significant concern about31 being observed. They are often conducted mounted or by combat units32 serving in a reconnaissance role. It is also appropriate in a stability or33 support operation where the threat is not significant in relationship to34 the requirement for information. This is a description of the level of35 covertness required by the commander.36
  • 123. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-15 • Aggressive. Operations have very permissive engagement criteria, and1 allow the reconnaissance commander to engage in combat in order to2 meet his information requirements. This is a description of the3 potential for engagement.4 • Discreet. Operations have very restrictive engagement criteria, and5 restrain the reconnaissance forces from initiating combat to gain6 information. This is a description of the potential for engagement.7 The engagement criteria establish what the troop is expected to engage8 and what they are expected to hand over to the brigade. Conversely, by9 understanding what the squadron commander requires the troop to destroy,10 coupled with his understanding of the threat’s most likely course of action, he11 is able to identify the platoon’s engagement criteria. This enables the platoon12 leader to focus certain weapons systems or to develop engagement areas and13 plan for the destruction of these specified threat vehicles if encountered.14 Additionally it allows the platoon leader to anticipate what his bypass criteria15 are and to develop a plan to keep eyes on bypassed threat positions.16 17 Additional Considerations18 When planning a reconnaissance mission, the troop commander must19 consider the following:20 • Time available from mission receipt to completion.21 • Threat size, composition, disposition, and will to fight.22 • Terrain and weather effects on the troop’s ability to maneuver.23 • Task organization or reinforcements. What will trigger the brigade’s24 employment of the antitank company or additional resources?25 26 Based on the considerations above, the troop commander determines the27 following:28 • Commander’s reconnaissance guidance to platoons (focus, tempo,29 engagement criteria).30 • How the critical tasks must be accomplished within the constraints of31 time and terrain.32 • Higher headquarters requirements for information.33 • Specified or implied missions associated with the end state.34 NOTE 1: If given a limit of advance (LOA), plan to screen along it (see35 Chapter 4).36 NOTE 2: Consider employment of attached tank or antitank assets.37 • How to use mortars and artillery to support his maneuver.38 • How he will task organize and how attachments will be integrated into39 the reconnaissance.40
  • 124. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-16 Attachments1 The troop must plan for attachments they may receive. These assets may2 be under troop control or they may be attached to a platoon for their use in the3 execution of the platoon’s specified reconnaissance tasks. Augmentation may4 include elements from the RSTA squadron’s surveillance troop (TUAVs,5 ground sensors, chemical reconnaissance elements). The following6 paragraphs provide an overview of these elements, their mission capabilities,7 and special digitized equipment. Refer to Chapter 6 for more specific8 information on the capabilities, limitations, and organization of these assets.9 10 TUAVs11 Air reconnaissance platoons perform aerial reconnaissance to confirm12 suspected threat positions in terrain inaccessible to ground forces. Aerial13 reconnaissance is often coordinated closely with a ground reconnaissance14 troop. The air and ground forces complement each other. The TUAVs move15 forward of the ground unit and reconnoiter key pieces of terrain or restrictive16 terrain, allowing the ground troop to concentrate its efforts in other areas or to17 increase the tempo of its reconnaissance. TUAVs provide the ground troop18 with added security by clearing the ground forward of the scouts, thereby19 facilitating movement of the ground force and quickening the pace of the20 operation. The ground troop can move rapidly mounted to the areas of21 interest within its area of operations and have the time to dismount and collect22 detailed information (see Figure 3-3).23 24 25 Figure 3-3. Recce troop conducts coordinated26 zone reconnaissance with TUAVs.27 28
  • 125. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-17 Multi-Sensor Assets1 2 The multi-sensor section is equipped with the improved remotely3 monitored battlefield sensor system (IREMBASS), PROPHET, and/or ground4 surveillance radar (GSR). IREMBASS is a set of unattended sensors capable5 of detecting, classifying, and determining the direction of movement of6 personnel and vehicles. Information collected using IREMBASS is7 transmitted to the intelligence team via a handheld monitor. This combat8 information is subsequently transmitted to the troop commander or controlling9 element (i.e., recce platoon leader) via FM voice or through FBCB2. When10 the IREMBASS ground-based station is collocated with the analysis and11 control team (ACT), it automatically sends collected information to the ASAS12 intelligence database. The troop commander should give clear guidance for13 the positioning and orientation of the intelligence team.14 The PROPHET provides the troop commander with an enhanced15 capability for electronic IPB, battlespace visualization, target development,16 and force protection throughout the troop’s width and depth. Through its17 electronic attack, PROPHET provides nonlethal fires and presents the18 commander with his own intelligence and electronic warfare (IEW) asset.19 The GSR detects, locates, identifies, and tracks moving ground threats in20 an area under surveillance. It allows the troop to remain stealthy by providing21 advance warning to preclude the troop from stumbling into the threat.22 23 NBC Reconnaissance Element24 25 A chemical reconnaissance section may assist the troop in the26 identification and reporting of nuclear, chemically, or biologically27 contaminated areas. (Refer to Appendix B for a detailed discussion.)28 29 Engineers30 31 An engineer combat mobility platoon from the brigade engineer company32 may be assigned a mission of route classification while the recce platoons33 move ahead and reconnoiter terrain on either side. This engineer element may34 be equipped with the handheld digital reconnaissance system (DRS) that35 enables the engineer reconnaissance section to record terrain data and transmit36 the data to the divisional digital topographical support system (DTSS).37 Additionally, the engineer mobility support platoon is equipped with38 lightweight bridging assets that can provide the troop with enhanced mobility39 for limited dry- and wet-gap crossing.40 41 42
  • 126. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-18 CAPABILITIES1 METT-TC governs the troop’s ability to conduct reconnaissance. The2 troop can—3 • Reconnoiter one route per platoon in a permissive no-threat4 environment. Reconnoiter up to two routes in a low-threat environment.5 Reconnoiter one route in a medium- to high-threat environment.6 • Conduct a detailed zone reconnaissance at a rate dependent on the7 terrain and execution of all the critical tasks associated with the8 mission. (A properly performed zone reconnaissance takes9 considerable time, typically about one kilometer per hour.)10 • When faced with a light-equipped threat, conduct either aggressive or11 stealthy reconnaissance, depending on the higher commander’s guidance.12 • Provide all-weather, around-the-clock, accurate, and timely13 reconnaissance in complex, close, and urban terrain.14 • With organic counterintelligence (CI) assets, conduct detailed MOUT-15 dominant reconnaissance in stability operations and smaller-scale16 contingencies.17 18 19 LIMITATIONS20 The lightly armored vehicles of the troop are severely limited in their21 ability to move through emplaced reconnaissance/counterreconnaissance22 elements of a mechanized threat.23 24 RECONNAISSANCE METHODS25 26 There are two methods for conducting reconnaissance at troop level:27 dismounted and mounted. The troop commander may use either method or a28 combination of methods to accomplish the reconnaissance mission based on29 the factors of METT-TC and the higher commander’s intent and guidance.30 31 Though a reconnaissance operation may be primarily mounted,32 dismounted activities will probably be required during the operation to33 achieve stealth and security. Stealth is paramount in most reconnaissance34 operations. Recce platoons should exploit the technical advantages of their35 digital equipment while using camouflage, discipline, and stealth to help avoid36 detection. To be effective, a stealthy reconnaissance must rely primarily on37 mounted/dismounted reconnaissance, long-range acquisition, and maximum38 use of cover and concealment.39 40 Dismounted Reconnaissance41 Dismounted reconnaissance is the primary means of reconnaissance for42 ground troops. This method permits the troop to collect the most detailed43
  • 127. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-19 information about the terrain and threat within a given area, zone, or along a1 route. However, dismounted reconnaissance is also the most time-consuming.2 See Figure 3-4.3 The troop commander may direct scouts to conduct dismounted4 reconnaissance when—5 • Time is available.6 • Detailed information is required.7 • Stealth is required.8 • Threat contact is expected or has been achieved through9 visual/electronic means.10 • Recce vehicles cannot move through an area because of terrain or11 enemy.12 • Security is the primary concern.13 14 Mounted Reconnaissance15 The troop commander directs scouts to conduct mounted reconnaissance16 (Figure 3-5) when—17 • Time is limited.18 • Stealth may or may not be required.19 • Detailed reconnaissance is not required, or the mounted method20 affords the same opportunity to collect information as the dismounted21 method.22 • Threat locations are known.23 • Distances require mounted movement.24 25 26 Figure 3-4. Dismounted Figure 3-5. Mounted reconnaissance. reconnaissance.
  • 128. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-20 TACTICAL EMPLOYMENT1 Infiltration2 Infiltration is a form of maneuver that entails movement by small groups3 or individuals at extended or irregular intervals through or into an area4 occupied by an enemy or a friendly force in which contact with the enemy is5 avoided. The troop infiltrates through the area of operations to orient on the6 reconnaissance objective without having to engage the enemy or fight through7 prepared defenses. This form of maneuver is slow and often accomplished8 under reduced visibility conditions. Aerial reconnaissance provides additional9 security for the troop by locating enemy positions and identifying routes on10 which to vector ground elements to avoid enemy contact.11 If contact is necessary to force a gap in enemy defenses, the troop must be12 augmented by infantry forces, MGS, or AT offensive assets to force the13 opening in the threat’s security zone to allow the troop to infiltrate. Another14 technique is for a maneuver team to conduct a probe of threat positions and15 allow the troop to maneuver through the gap that is created. Still another16 technique is to have TUAVs, layered with SIGINT, GSR, and IREMBASS to17 locate openings through threat positions and assist the troop in infiltrating.18 Prior to infiltration, the troop commander will select individual zones or19 routes for the platoons. He will also specify actions on contact. Although the20 intent of the troop scouts is to avoid threat direct fire contact, they must know21 what actions to take upon being engaged. The troop commander establishes22 engagement criteria and issues them in his OPORD. If detected, an23 infiltration element should return fire, break contact, and report (IAW troop24 order, actions on contact, and SOPs). The troop commander will decide25 whether that element should continue the mission or return to friendly lines.26 NOTE: Refer to FM 3-20.98 [FM 17-98] for more detailed discussion of27 infiltration.28 29 Planning30 Infiltration is one of the most difficult missions the lightly armed scouts of31 the troop can accomplish. To maximize the success of the infiltration and32 enhance survivability, scouts need a detailed knowledge of the terrain and up-33 to-date information about the threat. A detailed terrain analysis can be34 conducted with the S2, using the capabilities of ASAS, DTSS, and FBCB2.35 The analysis and control team (ACT) and ASAS data bases can provide36 details related to threat locations and dispositions during infiltration planning,37 and TUAV reconnaissance flights can support both planning and execution.38 The squadron S2 and reconnaissance troop commander will review terrain39 analysis and threat data to locate threat positions and gaps in threat lines. This40 analysis also determines if the commander will move his elements on single or41 multiple infiltration lanes or zone. The overriding factor in determining42
  • 129. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-21 whether to use single or multiple lanes is the ability to remain undetected.1 Space and time separate forces moving along the infiltration lane. Armed2 with the S2 intelligence data, the troop commander decides to move his troop3 by platoons or sections. Moving the troop by platoons is easier to control and4 faster. Conversely, movement by sections or individual vehicles lessens the5 likelihood of detection due to the smaller size of the moving elements. As the6 infiltration is executed, clear routes can be sent digitally, or waypoints7 transmitted on FM to follow-on elements.8 The S2 will evaluate intelligence data shortfalls and task intelligence9 assets to obtain more detail as required to support the infiltration mission. For10 example, he may use TUAVs to conduct aerial reconnaissance of the proposed11 infiltration lanes or zone to obtain a current picture of the battlefield prior to12 and during movement of the ground scouts.13 The S2/S3 and troop commander must program adequate time in scout14 movement to compensate for potential delays and to ensure that the15 infiltrating force has ample time to reach reconnaissance objectives and16 subsequent primary and alternate rally points. Contingency plans should17 address what will be accomplished if a scout element fails to arrive or arrives18 late at the primary rally point. In this case, alternate rally points are19 designated and used if—20 • The primary rally point is occupied by the threat.21 • The primary rally point is compromised.22 • The primary rally point is found to be unsuitable before the infiltrating23 element reaches it.24 25 Execution26 The troop commander exercises command and control by observing the27 forward movement of his infiltration force displayed on FBCB2. As METT-28 TC and other combat factors dictate, he can modify his overall scheme of29 maneuver and quickly submit revised/updated digital overlays via FBCB2 or30 FM FRAGOs to reorient his forces and ensure synchronization of effort.31 32 Methods33 The troop can move as a whole by infiltration or by individual platoon.34 Infiltration can be executed mounted, dismounted, or a combination of the35 two. Depending on the availability of equipment and type of mission,36 dismounted scouts can infiltrate by foot, vehicle, rotary-wing aircraft, or37 watercraft to the objective.38 39 Aerial Insertion. The BCT S2/S3, aviation liaison officer, Air Force40 ALO, FSCOORD, and the troop commander plan the aerial insertion. The41 aerial insertion of troop elements is conducted similar to an air assault42
  • 130. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-22 operation. Recovery, resupply, and MEDEVAC support are critical planning1 aspects for aerial insertions. Deception inserts should be made en route to and2 when returning from the insertion. (See FM 3-97.4 [FM 90-4],3 FM 3-20.98 [FM 17-98], and Chapter 6, Section III, for more information4 related to aerial insertions.)5 Dismounted Infiltration. The troop commander may direct scouts to6 conduct dismounted infiltration when—7 • Time is available.8 • Stealth is required.9 • Enemy contact is expected or has been achieved through visual means.10 • Scout vehicles cannot move through an area because of terrain or11 enemy.12 • Security is the primary concern.13 Mounted Infiltration. The troop commander directs scouts to conduct14 mounted infiltration when—15 • Time is limited.16 • Enemy locations are known.17 • Distances require mounted movement.18 Though an infiltration may be primarily mounted, dismounted activities19 may be required during the operation to achieve stealth and security.20 Employment by Echelon. This technique lends itself to the flexibility21 required by a reconnaissance organization. The troop can move subordinates22 mounted and dismounted, enter the zone at different times and locations, and23 conduct different reconnaissance missions. An example of employment by24 echelon is described below.25 The brigade has a requirement to conduct surveillance of critical NAIs 3626 hours prior to the LD time. The employment of the BRT would create a27 reconnaissance gap. To solve this dilemma, the BRT commander tasks one28 platoon to infiltrate and establish surveillance of the brigade NAIs, while the29 balance of his troop prepares to conduct a zone reconnaissance forward of the30 brigade (prior to its LD).31 Checkpoints32 Checkpoints (or TIRS) should be chosen for all infiltrations/exfiltrations33 to control movement and provide command and control flexibility.34 Checkpoints can be used as a rallying point if a scout element should become35 misoriented, or the threat forces the scout element off the infiltration route or36 OP. These checkpoints should be entered on the FBCB2 systems.37
  • 131. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-23 The first scout element reaching the rally point establishes security. Using1 FBCB2 or FM, he can identify and exchange recognition signals with follow-2 on troop elements. These procedures are rehearsed by all troop elements.3 4 Single-lane Infiltration5 Infiltration on a single lane is the least desirable technique. It requires all6 infiltrating groups to move at intervals in the same lane. This technique is7 used only when METT-TC analysis supports the identification of only one8 gap in the threat positions. The troop commander must consider the number9 of vehicles to be infiltrated, the time available, route concealment, and the10 vehicle time/distance interval that must be used to prevent detection. See11 Figure 3-6.12 13 AA X RALLY X INFILTRATION LANE Groups are seperated by time intervals. PZ 14 Figure 3-6. Single-lane infiltration.15 16 17 Multiple-lane Infiltration18 This is the preferred method of infiltration. The troop infiltrates by19 multiple lanes when two or more gaps are found through the threat defense.20 See Figure 3-7.21 AA RALLY X INFILTRATION LANES Groups are seperated by space intervals. X RALLY RALLY 2nd Sec 1st Sec 3rd Sec PZ PZ 22 Figure 3-7. Multiple-lane infiltration.23
  • 132. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-24 Infiltration Actions on Contact1 When reconnaissance elements infiltrate, the detection of one subordinate2 element may alert the threat and compromise the entire mission. If detected,3 subordinate elements will return fire, break contact, and report. If the4 reconnaissance unit makes visual contact, but is not detected, it should5 continue the mission. The commander’s intent must clearly state what the6 unit should do upon contact with the threat (tempo and engagement criteria).7 8 Infiltration Considerations9 Plans for infiltration are based on movement to the area of operations with10 the least risk of detection. The following considerations will help to ensure a11 successful infiltration mission:12 • Augment detailed planning with information and intelligence from the13 squadron.14 • Layer surveillance to provide early warning and detection of threat15 using imagery, SIGINT, GSR, IREMBASS, and other ISR assets.16 • Select concealed primary or alternate routes based on detailed map17 reconnaissance and aerial photographs, ground reconnaissance, and18 data on the threat situation from other sources.19 • Avoid obstacles, populated areas, silhouetting, enemy positions, main20 avenues of approach, and movement along heavily populated routes21 and trails.22 • Conduct infiltration during reduced visibility and reduced alertness.23 The time is especially important during critical phases, such as moving24 through populated areas.25 • Ensure team members know routes, rally points (and alternates), time26 schedules, danger areas, and threat situation. These are critical to27 speed and stealth.28 • Provide the team with centralized coordination to ensure that all29 members are acting in accordance with cover and deception plans.30 Infiltration by land is characterized by centralized planning and31 decentralized execution.32 33 Exfiltration34 Exfiltration is the removal of personnel or units from areas under enemy35 control by stealth, deception, surprise, or clandestine means. If the troop36 infiltrates to conduct its mission, it may be required to exfiltrate once the37 mission is complete. In other instances, units within the troop may be38 deliberately employed in a stay-behind mode during brigade operations.39 Exfiltration should be planned as carefully as infiltration, particularly if40 contact with the enemy has occurred during the mission. The commander41
  • 133. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-25 must plan for contingency measures should conditions force the1 reconnaissance unit to conduct an unplanned exfiltration.2 The OPORD must also address contingencies and actions the3 reconnaissance unit will take for both planned and unplanned exfiltration.4 5 Exfiltration Considerations6 The principles of route selection, movement formations, and movement7 security are observed during movement to the extraction site. The following8 considerations will help to ensure a successful exfiltration mission:9 • The time that a team remains in the urban AO depends on its mission,10 composition, and equipment. The exfiltration is critical from a11 standpoint of morale and mission accomplishment. Plans for extraction12 are made before the operation, with alternate plans for contingencies,13 such as the evacuation of sick or injured personnel. During the14 mission, the team leader may be faced with an unforeseen situation15 that may demand the utmost flexibility, discipline, and leadership.16 • When a team has missed a certain number of required transmissions,17 the command assumes that the team has a communication problem, is18 in trouble, or both. At that time, a no-communication resupply and19 exfiltration plan is used.20 • Exfiltration of the team may be by means other than link up with their21 vehicles. The operation order may specify dismounted exfiltration or22 link up with friendly forces in an offensive operation. Any of these23 means may also be planned as an alternative if the team cannot be24 extracted by their vehicles or if capture is imminent.25 • Teams must be trained in exfiltration techniques so they can walk out26 either singly or in groups.27 28 Pick-up Points29 Exfiltration pick-up points for dismounts should be far enough away from30 the OPs to ensure the threat does not hear vehicle or helicopter noises.31 Mountains, dense foliage, and other similar terrain features can screen these32 noises. Under normal conditions, in flat, open terrain on a clear night, rotary-33 wing aircraft lose most of their audio signature at approximately a five-34 kilometer distance. Movement routes are planned that put ridgelines, rivers,35 and other restrictive terrain between the unit and threat forces. Primary and36 alternate linkup points should never be on a single azimuth leading away from37 the OP of an exfiltration route. Exfiltration operations require additional time38 to build in a buffer against unforeseen circumstances, such as inadvertent39 contact with threat forces or unexpected restrictive terrain.40 41
  • 134. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-26 Methods of Exfiltration1 Exfiltration can be accomplished via land, air, or water. In the event that2 dismounted scouts are utilized in a stay-behind mode (withdrawal or delay),3 exfiltration by land with its organic vehicles is the most preferable method.4 Exfiltration by land is used when—5 • Friendly lines are close.6 • No other method is feasible.7 • Areas along the route are largely uninhabited.8 • Threat forces are widely dispersed.9 • Threat forces are not conducting aggressive/active10 counterreconnaissance and security.11 • Terrain degrades threat’s ability to maneuver against exfiltration unit.12 13 Extraction by air is favored when the resources are available and its use14 will not compromise the mission. These methods are used when—15 • Long distances must be covered.16 • Time of return is essential.17 • Cover and concealment are lacking.18 • The threat does not have air superiority.19 • The threat has not employed ADA assets in the AO.20 • Heavily populated hostile areas obstruct ground exfiltration.21 22 ACTIONS ON CONTACT23 The goal of the troop is to facilitate situational understanding for the BCT.24 Its operations facilitate the brigade commander’s ability to retain freedom of25 maneuver in order to concentrate combat power and apply assets deliberately26 at the decisive time and place of his choosing. For the BCT, there is a new27 actions on contact paradigm, which consists of the following steps:28 • Make contact with sensors (alert received through ATCCS/FBCB2) or29 other ISR assets.30 • Evaluate/develop the situation (situational awareness and31 understanding) out of contact.32 • Maneuver the force out of contact (choose/recommend a course of33 action).34 • Make contact on your own terms; deploy and report (execute a course35 of action).36
  • 135. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-27 EIGHT FORMS OF CONTACT • Visual • Direct Fire • Indirect Fire • Obstacles • Aircraft • NBC • Electronic • Non-hostile No longer does the brigade have to rely on chance contact to deploy its1 combat forces. The reconnaissance troop and assigned ISR assets develop the2 situation for the BCT and in effect pull the BCT combat forces to the decisive3 point of the BCT commander’s choosing.4 5 With all the additional information and intelligence from the BCT and the6 ARFOR/division resources, the reconnaissance troop and its subordinate7 elements have to adjust the way they make contact as well. These additional8 ISR resources result in fewer chance contacts within the initial phases of an9 operation (reconnaissance). Certain considerations should be made in10 planning and executing actions on contact.11 12 Forms of Contact13 In both reconnaissance and security operations, contact occurs when a14 member of the troop encounters any situation that requires an active or passive15 response to the threat. Contact is described in terms of the threat or friendly16 forces gaining contact through eight forms of contact. These situations may17 entail one or more of the following forms of contact:18 • Visual contact (friendly elements may19 or may not be observed by the threat).20 Examples of visual contact include:21 − Scout observes using binoculars or22 other optics.23 − TUAVs have visual contact.24 • Physical contact (direct fire) with a25 threat force.26 • Indirect fire contact.27 • Contact with threat obstacles or ones of unknown origin.28 • Contact with threat or unknown aircraft.29 • Situations involving NBC conditions.30 • Situations involving electronic warfare tactics. Examples of electronic31 contact include:32 − GSR or IREMBASS from surveillance troop.33 − SIGINT assets from surveillance troop.34 − Radios jammed by threat force.35 • Non-hostile (civilians or other events that may affect the mission).36 Examples of non-hostile contact include:37 - Refugee traffic on assigned routes.38 - Peaceful demonstrations in assigned NAIs.39
  • 136. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-28 - Local or US media contact.1 - Disruption of electrical power or other vital services in AO.2 - Local government services (i.e., police, fire, postal) suspended.3 Leaders at echelons from platoon through squadron conduct actions on4 contact when they or a subordinate element recognizes one of the forms of5 contact or receives a report of threat contact. The squadron/troop may conduct6 actions on contact in response to a variety of circumstances, including the7 following:8 • Subordinate platoon(s)/section(s) conducting actions on contact.9 • Reports from the squadron or BCT.10 • Reports from GSR/IREMBASS (surveillance troop or BCT MI11 Company).12 • Reports from SIGINT/PROPHET (surveillance troop or BCT MI13 Company).14 • Reports from TUAV (surveillance troop or BCT MI Company).15 • Reports from or actions of an adjacent unit.16 17 18 Developing Actions on Contact19 Troop commanders and platoon leaders analyze the enemy throughout the20 troop-leading process to identify all likely contact situations that may occur21 during an operation. Intelligence reports from higher help to clarify the22 threat’s COAs and likelihood of contact. Through the planning and rehearsals23 conducted during troop-leading procedures, leaders develop and refine COAs24 to deal with the probable threat actions/contact. The COAs will eventually25 become the foundation for the troop’s scheme of maneuver.26 During the troop-leading process, leaders must evaluate a number of27 factors to determine their impact on the unit’s actions on contact. For28 example, the commander needs to consider how the likelihood of contact will29 affect his choice of movement techniques and formations. In doing this, he30 can begin preparing the unit for actions on contact; for example, he may31 outline procedures for the transition to more secure movement techniques32 before a contact situation.33 Time Requirements for Actions on Contact34 Commanders must understand that properly executed actions on contact35 require time at both platoon and troop levels. To fully develop the situation, a36 platoon or team may have to execute extensive lateral movement, dismount37 and remount scout squads, and/or call for and adjust indirect fires. Each of38 these activities requires time. The commander must balance the time required39 for subordinate elements to conduct actions on contact with the need of the40
  • 137. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-29 higher unit to maintain tempo and momentum. In terms of slowing the tempo1 of an operation, however, the loss of a platoon or team is normally much more2 costly than the additional time required to allow the subordinate element to3 properly develop the situation.4 5 Steps for Actions on Contact6 The troop should execute actions on contact using a logical, well-7 organized process of decision making. There are two types of contact the unit8 can expect and prepare for—known and chance. Known contact entails9 information and intelligence on known locations or positions of threat forces.10 Known contact actions entail these seven steps:11 • Make contact through sensors and other ISR assets.12 • Develop the situation out of contact (evaluate the situation [update the13 IPB process]).14 • Maneuver the force out of contact (choose how, with what, and where15 to make contact).16 • Make contact on your own terms (deploy and report).17 • Reevaluate and develop the situation.18 • Choose and/or recommend a COA.19 • Execute the selected COA.20 When there is no intelligence about the threat’s location, chance contact21 may be made. Chance contact actions consist of the same last four steps in22 known contact actions.23 • Deploy and report.24 • Reevaluate and develop the situation.25 • Choose and/or recommend a COA.26 • Execute the selected COA.27 28 The seven- (or four) step process is not intended to generate a rigid,29 lockstep response to the threat. Rather, the goal is to provide an orderly30 framework that enables the unit and its subordinates to survive the initial31 contact, and then apply sound decision making and timely actions to complete32 the operation. Ideally, the unit will acquire the threat (visual contact) before33 being sighted by the threat/enemy; then it can continue with visual contact or34 initiate indirect contact or physical contact on its own terms by executing the35 designated COA. It is also essential for the troop commander to understand36 the higher commander’s intent of the reconnaissance to recommend COAs for37 the brigade/squadron to react to the threat contact.38
  • 138. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-30 Make Contact Through Sensors and Other ISR Assets1 Ideally there will be information and intelligence on the threat in the troop2 area of operations. For the troop, contact information may come from other3 troop assets, TUAV, GSR/IREMBASS, or SIGINT resources. The squadron4 may receive contact information from the brigade, which has access through5 reach-back capabilities to JSTARS, SOF intelligence operations, satellite6 imagery, Guardrail, and other ISR assets. The troop will make this contact7 through FBCB2 or radio reports.8 Develop the Situation out of Contact9 With the Army tactical command and control system (ATCCS), the10 brigade down to the scout will have situational awareness of the threat via11 information appearing on FBCB2. Empowered with this information, chance12 contact is minimized. This information will flow within the troop and13 squadron as well as from the BCT and ARFOR/DIV higher intelligence14 sources. Based on the current situation of the unit, leaders must evaluate this15 information and understand the potential threat COA. The troop must16 determine if it will gain contact with this threat element to further develop the17 situation, or pass the contact to other ISR assets or follow-on elements. (Refer18 to Chapter 5, Section VI, Reconnaissance Handover.)19 20 Make Contact on Your Own Terms (Deploy and Report—if chance21 contact)22 Based on the threat information, the current plan, and the other METT-TC23 considerations, the troop must decide how it will gain contact with the threat24 element. Depending on the situation and the resources available to the25 commander, the troop determines if visual contact is needed; if electronic26 contact is best; or on the high end, based on the ROE and engagement criteria,27 if direct fire or indirect fire is warranted. Based on mission and troops28 available, the commander determines which subordinate element will make29 contact. He must consider employing overlapping assets to effectively make30 contact and minimize risk. Finally, based on terrain and the threat’s probable31 COA, he determines where to make contact. The troop commander in the32 area that contact is made must take responsibility for maintaining contact until33 ordered to break contact or handover can occur. (Refer to Chapter 5, Section34 VI, Reconnaissance Handover.)35 Deploy and report if there is chance contact. The subordinate platoons and36 sections react to chance contact by conducting the immediate action battle37 drill. Battle drills are established through solid SOPs and IAW the OPORD.38 They must be well rehearsed prior to the operation.39 40
  • 139. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-31 Reevaluate and/or Develop the Situation1 While the troop is deploying, the commander must reevaluate the situation2 and, as necessary, continue to maneuver to develop it. The commander3 quickly gathers as much information as possible, either visually, or more4 likely, through reports from the platoon(s) in contact. He analyzes the5 information to determine critical operational considerations, including these:6 • The size of the threat/enemy element.7 • Location, composition, activity, and orientation of the threat force.8 • The impact of obstacles and terrain.9 • Threat/enemy capabilities (especially antiarmor capability).10 • Probable threat/enemy intentions.11 • How to gain positional advantage over the enemy (from the troop’s12 and the BCT’s perspective).13 • The friendly situation (location, strength, and capabilities).14 • Possible friendly COAs to achieve the specified end state.15 After evaluating the situation, the commander may discover that he does16 not have enough information to identify the necessary operational17 considerations. To make this determination, he must further develop the18 situation in accordance with the higher commander’s intent, using a19 combination of the following techniques:20 • Surveillance, employing recce scout squads/teams in a recon patrol,21 dismounted vehicle operators, and/or IAV commanders (using22 binoculars and other optical aids).23 • Mounted and/or dismounted maneuver (this includes lateral maneuver24 to gain additional information by viewing the threat from another25 perspective).26 • Joint/indirect fire.27 • Reconnaissance by fire (only with augmentation, with permissive28 engagement criteria, and with better than 5:1 odds).29 Once the commander determines the size of the threat/enemy force the30 troop has encountered, he sends a report to higher.31 32 Recommend/Choose a COA33 After developing the situation and determining that he has enough34 information to make a decision, the troop commander selects a COA that35 meets the requirements of the higher commander’s intent and is within the36 troop’s capabilities. Mindful of the commander’s intent, the troop commander37
  • 140. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-32 may recommend a BCT COA if his contact has bearing on the BCT’s CCIR1 (PIR) as part of the reconnaissance pull method.2 Nature of Contact. The nature of the contact (known or chance) may3 have a significant impact on how long it takes a commander to develop and4 select a COA. As an example, in preparing to conduct a reconnaissance5 mission, the troop commander determines that the team will encounter a threat6 dismounted OP along its axis of advance; consequently, during troop-leading7 procedures, he develops a scheme of maneuver to defeat the outpost with8 indirect fires. When the troop’s platoon makes contact with five threat9 dismounts, the commander can quickly assess that this is the anticipated10 contact and direct the troop to execute his plan. On the other hand, unexpected11 contact with a well-concealed threat force may require time to develop the12 situation at platoon and team levels. As it recons for critical information that13 will eventually allow the commander to make a sound decision, the platoon14 and/or troop may have to employ several of the techniques for developing the15 situation.16 COA Procedures. The commander has several options in how he selects17 a COA. These options include the following:18 • The troop commander can direct the team to execute the original plan19 if the situation reveals no need for change.20 • If his analysis shows that the original plan is still valid but some21 refinement is necessary, the troop commander should inform his22 commander (prior to execution, if possible) and issue a FRAGO to23 refine the plan.24 • If his analysis shows that the original plan needs to be changed, but the25 selected COA will still comply with the commander’s intent, the troop26 commander should inform his commander (prior to execution, if27 possible) and issue a FRAGO to retask his subordinate elements.28 • If his analysis shows that the original plan deviates from the29 commander’s intent and needs to be changed, the troop commander30 must report the situation and recommend an alternative COA to his31 commander.32 • If the battlefield picture is still vague, the troop commander must33 direct a subordinate element to continue to develop the situation. He34 then uses one of the first four options to report the situation and choose35 a COA and/or to direct further action.36 37 Execute the Selected COA38 In executing a COA, the troop transitions to maneuver. It then continues to39 maneuver throughout execution, either as part of a tactical task or to advance40 while in contact to reach the point on the battlefield from which it executes its41 tactical task. The team can employ a number of tactical tasks as COAs, any of42
  • 141. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-33 which may be preceded (and/or followed) by additional maneuver. Refer to1 sections of this chapter and Chapters 4 and 6 for detailed descriptions of these2 tasks. These are a few tasks that may be chosen:3 • Reconnaissance and surveillance (with possible multidimensional4 focus).5 • Screen.6 • Withdraw.7 • Bypass.8 • Delay.9 • Defend.10 • Hasty attack.11 As execution continues, more information will become available to the12 troop commander. Based on the emerging details of the threat/enemy13 situation, he may have to alter his COA during execution. For example, as the14 troop maneuvers with mortar and field artillery to destroy a target acquisition15 radar hidden in a barn, it discovers a motorized infantry platoon in prepared16 positions in and around the farm house. The commander must analyze and17 develop the new situation. He then selects and recommends an alternate COA18 to the higher unit, such as establishing a surveillance position to support an19 infantry company team’s maneuver against the newly discovered threat force.20 Actions at Obstacles21 How the scout approaches an obstacle is highly dependent on METT-TC22 factors. However, the process of conducting this type of reconnaissance can23 be reduced to five steps that under most METT-TC conditions will ensure an24 organized and efficient operation. These steps are still connected to the steps25 discussed in actions on contact.26 • Detection.27 • Deploy and report.28 − Local security and reconnaissance.29 • Evaluate and develop the situation.30 − Obstacle/danger area reconnaissance.31 • Selection of a course of action.32 • Recommendation/execution of a course of action.33 34 Detection35 During reconnaissance operations, scouts must locate and evaluate mines,36 obstacles, and man-made and natural restrictions to support the movement of37
  • 142. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-34 their parent unit. Detection of obstacles and restrictions begins in the planning1 phase of an operation when the S2 conducts IPB. The scouts combine the S2’s2 work with the reconnaissance conducted during the troop-leading procedures3 (normally a map reconnaissance only) to identify all possible obstacles and4 restrictions within their area of operations. The scouts then plan their5 reconnaissance based on the orders they receive, the S2’s IPB, and their own6 map reconnaissance and refined IPB.7 The scouts use visual and physical means to detect mines and obstacles8 while conducting their mission. They visually inspect terrain for signs of mine9 emplacement and reinforcing obstacles. They also must be alert to dangerous10 battlefield debris such as bomblets from cluster bomb units (CBU) or dual-11 purpose improved conventional munitions (DPICM). Mines and other types12 of obstacles can be difficult for mounted scouts to detect. They may need to13 dismount their vehicles several hundred meters short of a suspected obstacle14 and approach it on foot to conduct their reconnaissance. Scouts look for15 disturbed earth, unusual or out-of-place features, surface-laid mines, tilt rods,16 and tripwires. MELIOS (mini eye-safe laser infrared observation set) and17 GPS (global positioning system) devices are used to assist in acquiring and18 determining precise locations of obstacles.19 Physical detection methods include detonating, probing, and using a mine20 detector. Detection occurs when a vehicle, soldier, or countermine system21 physically encounters a mine. This method does not indicate the boundaries of22 the obstacle. The scouts may have to probe or conduct additional visual23 inspection to define the extent of the minefield.24 Local Security and Reconnaissance25 Threat forces cover their obstacles with observation and fires. Whenever26 scouts encounter an obstacle, they must proceed with their reconnaissance27 assuming the threat can observe and engage them. The scout element that28 detects the obstacle or minefield establishes overwatch and sends an initial29 obstacle report before it proceeds with the reconnaissance. The scouts in30 overwatch look for signs of threat forces in and around the obstacle or in31 positions that allow observation of the obstacle. They visually search the32 dominant terrain on the far side of the obstacle for evidence of threat positions33 or ambushes. Once they confirm the enemy situation from the near side, the34 scouts not in overwatch move mounted and/or dismounted to find bypasses35 around the obstacle. If they find a bypass, they move around the obstacle and36 establish OPs on the far side to provide 360-degree security of the obstacle. If37 the scouts are unable to find a bypass, they conduct their reconnaissance from38 the near side under the security of the overwatch elements.39 40 Obstacle Reconnaissance41 Once security is established, scouts move dismounted to the obstacle. The42 scouts must be cautious when reconnoitering the obstacle. Tripwires or other43
  • 143. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-35 types of wire may indicate the threat is using booby traps or command-1 detonated mines to prevent friendly forces from determining—2 • Location and orientation of the obstacle.3 • Types of mines in the minefield or types of obstacles.4 • Length and width of the obstacle area.5 • Threat coverage, including threat strength, equipment, and fire6 support.7 • Breaching requirements. The scout reconnoitering the obstacle8 prepares an obstacle report with this information and forwards a digital9 report through the platoon leader or platoon sergeant to the10 commander.11 12 Selection of a Course of Action13 The troop commander analyzes the situation and the factors of METT-TC14 to determine what course of action to select. He has a choice of three courses15 of action: bypass, breach, or continue the mission.16 17 Bypass. A bypass is the preferred method when it offers a quick, easy,18 and tactically sound means of avoiding the obstacle. A good bypass allows the19 entire force to avoid the primary obstacle without risking further exposure to20 threat ambush and without diverting the force from its objective. Bypassing21 conserves breaching assets and maintains the momentum of the moving unit.22 If the platoon leader decides to bypass and his commander approves, scouts23 mark the bypass and report it to their commander. A digital graphic of the24 bypass with waypoints should be sent on FBCB2, if possible. Guides may be25 required if the bypass is difficult to locate or visibility conditions are poor.26 In some cases, bypassing is not possible and breaching may be the best, or27 only, tactical solution. These situations might include the following:28 • The obstacle is integrated into a prepared defensive position and the29 only available bypass canalizes friendly forces into a fire sack or30 ambush.31 • The mission specifically tasks the platoon to ensure mobility along the32 original route for follow-on forces.33 • The best available bypass route will not allow follow-on forces to34 maintain an acceptable rate of movement.35 • Improving the bypass may require more time and assets and create36 greater risk than breaching the primary obstacle(s).37 38 Breach. A breach of an obstacle significantly degrades the platoon’s39 ability to maintain the momentum of either the reconnaissance or the40
  • 144. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-36 follow-on forces. Obstacles within the scouts’ breaching capability include1 small minefields, simple wire, hasty roadblocks, craters, and similar point-2 type obstacles. For more complex obstacles, the scouts can support the3 breaching efforts conducted by other elements by identifying the type and4 dimensions of the obstacle(s), feasible breach points, reporting where the5 threat is, and executing artillery observer tasks.6 Continuing the Mission. When the scouts encounter a restriction, such as7 a bridge or defile, they may find that the restriction is not an obstacle to8 movement and is not covered by threat fire or observation. Scouts may also9 discover dummy minefields or obstacles that are incomplete and easily passed10 through. Under these conditions, the scouts’ course of action may be to report11 and then continue the reconnaissance mission.12 13 Recommending/Executing a Course of Action14 Once the scout has determined the course of action best suited to the15 situation, he either executes it or recommends it to his higher headquarters for16 approval. Generally, the scout will execute a particular course of action17 without specific approval if it is addressed in the OPORD he received from18 higher or in his unit SOP. In such a case, the scout will execute and then19 inform his commander of his actions. If the situation the scout discovered is20 not covered by previous guidance, he determines the best course of action and21 recommends it to his commander prior to execution. The near-real time22 exchange of combat information provided to the troop commander via FBCB223 and FM provides them with an advantage in overcoming threat obstacles.24 With FBCB2, the scouts can precisely identify and report bypasses or breach25 sites and quickly report other pertinent combat information related to threat26 activity in the vicinity of the obstacle.27 Displaying this information in FBCB2 is a great help in executing the28 complex command and control associated with obstacle reduction. Once the29 scouts have completed the reconnaissance of the obstacle, the troop30 commander or operations sergeant prepares an updated digitized obstacle31 overlay. The information presented on the digitized overlay is a graphic32 depiction of the following:33 • Known threat locations.34 • Type and limits of the obstacle.35 • Appropriate breach sites.36 • Waypoint routing to the obstacle or breach point.37 Providing this information to the appropriate units via FBCB2 enables the38 breach and assault forces to move rapidly through the breach without a39 corresponding loss in command and control or orientation. Following40 elements can rapidly locate the established breach lanes, continuing operations41 with little or no loss of momentum.42
  • 145. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-37 ACTIONS AT DANGER AREAS1 Open Areas2 Open areas permit easy observation or engagement of the reconnaissance3 element and should therefore be treated as a danger area. Under no4 circumstance should reconnaissance elements be forced through an open area.5 Using good cover and concealment, a reconnaissance of the flanks and far6 side of the open area should be conducted before moving into an open area.7 Open areas within the troop’s zone or area of operations may force the troop8 commander to coordinate crossing of certain control measures (boundaries) to9 facilitate flank and rear reconnaissance of the open area.10 11 Built-up Areas12 The troop can expect to conduct reconnaissance of built-up areas. Built-13 up area reconnaissance missions are very dangerous for mobile forces, and14 should be bypassed when possible. If a reconnaissance must be conducted,15 the troop commander should ensure that the reconnaissance is conducted at a16 distance from covered and concealed positions or dismounted (see Chapter 717 for more information on urban operations).18 The troop commander determines whether or not to bypass a built-up area19 based on the following considerations:20 • Can the built-up areas be bypassed without interfering with the21 squadron mission?22 • Can the threat in the built-up areas influence the squadron’s mission?23 If a built-up area is bypassed, the threat must be kept under observation at24 all times.25 26 The following are guidelines for planning and executing reconnaissance in27 built-up areas:28 • Be alert for mines and booby traps. Dirt roads, alleys, and curves in29 paved roads are excellent places to employ mines. Structures in built-30 up areas are excellent places to employ booby traps.31 • Obtain detailed street maps of all major built-up areas the troop might32 encounter during an operation. These are more useful than the33 standard 1:50,000 military maps.34 • Clearly define platoon and section zones. Do not divide responsibility35 for a street between subordinate units.36 • Observe built-up areas from outside for signs of threat activity prior to37 entering them.38
  • 146. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-38 • Approach main roads cautiously. Main roads through towns normally1 have features such as open areas, parks, traffic circles, and medians.2 The threat may use these same open areas for logistics elements,3 concentrations of armored vehicles, artillery positions, and combat4 support vehicle locations.5 • Consider collateral damage constraints that may limit the ability to6 employ some types of weapon systems.7 8 Without augmentation, the troop is not capable of performing the following9 in built-up areas:10 • Reconnoitering each building and street.11 • Reconnoitering underground structures (basements and sewers).12 • Determining the strength of dug-in threat units.13 • Determining the detailed disposition of dismounted threat units.14 • Conducting hasty attacks against dismounted threat units larger than15 platoon size.16 17 When operating in built-up areas, the troop must expect and plan for a18 serious degradation of FM and digital communications. The situational19 awareness picture will rapidly become degraded. Blue filter settings should20 be set for frequent updates unless elements will be relatively stationary for21 extended periods.22 23 24 25 SECTION III. AREA RECONNAISSANCE26 27 An area reconnaissance is conducted to gain detailed information about28 threat forces and terrain features within a specified area. The commander29 assigns an area reconnaissance mission before he sends his forces into or near30 an area to avoid being surprised by actual terrain conditions or unexpected31 threat forces. The reconnaissance may be enemy-oriented, terrain-oriented, or32 a combination of the two. The commander may focus the reconnaissance33 effort (i.e., locate the threat’s reserve forces, or locate river crossing sites,34 approach routes, and holding areas in a specific area). In these cases, the35 troop commander must identify which critical tasks he wants the troop to36 execute.37 38
  • 147. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-39 CRITICAL TASKS1 2 During an area reconnaissance, the following critical tasks must be3 accomplished unless the troop commander directs otherwise:4 • Reconnoiter all terrain within the area.5 • Inspect and classify all bridges within the area.6 • Locate fords or crossing sites near all bridges within the area.7 • Inspect and classify all overpasses, underpasses, and culverts.8 • Locate and clear all mines, obstacles, and barriers in the area (within9 its capability).10 • Locate a bypass around BUAs, obstacles, and contaminated areas.11 • Find and report all threats within the area.12 • Report reconnaissance information.13 14 In addition to the primary tasks, the troop must be prepared to conduct15 other tasks as directed by the commander. These additional tasks may include16 the following:17 18 • Recognize threat and countermeasures (identify threat activities and19 recommend threat probable COAs).20 • Find all threat that can affect the mission.21 • Determine the size, location, and composition of the society22 demographics (e.g., race, sex, age, religion, language, tribe, clan, class,23 education, history, government, and/or factions).24 • Establish and maintain contact with local civilian and military25 leadership.26 • Reconnoiter the society to determine the regional, local, and27 neighborhood situations.28 • Determine the needs of the society to determine operation/actions29 needed to support a friendly populace, or to neutralize or gain support30 of a hostile or neutral faction.31 • Identify key municipal infrastructure that can affect military operations32 (utilities, sewage, communications).33 • Determine media activities.34 • Clarify organizations and methods of operation for terrorists,35 transnational groups, and ethnic centers of power.36 • Identify local populous allegiances to factions, religious groups, or37 other organizations.38
  • 148. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-40 TECHNIQUES1 2 When the troop receives an area reconnaissance mission, the assigned area3 is identified as the terrain inside a solid, continuous boundary. Planning the4 movement to the area is the first step. Select the route(s), establish a march5 order on each route, and specify a start point, checkpoints, and a release point.6 Use a movement technique that keeps the troop moving quickly and securely.7 If possible, avoid contact with the threat while en route. Report and bypass.8 Be careful when approaching the area to begin the reconnaissance. Use9 common sense. Avoid known threat forces outside of the area where10 reconnaissance will be conducted; start somewhere else.11 12 Enclose the area within a troop boundary. Draw a line of departure, an13 LOA, and lateral boundaries. Divide the troop area into three platoon areas.14 Add phase lines along identifiable terrain to control movement through the15 area. Place contact points at the intersection of the platoon boundaries and all16 phase lines. Use graphic control measures, checkpoints, TIRS, and TRPs to17 facilitate command and control.18 19 Use a troop vee or line formation to conduct an area reconnaissance.20 Recce platoons deploy abreast from the release points to accomplish all the21 reconnaissance tasks. They move across the line of departure first. The mortar22 section moves through the center of the troop zone, remaining in position to23 range from 3 to 3.5 kilometers forward of the lead elements in the recce24 platoons. The mortar section may also follow one of the recce platoons,25 depending on where initial threat contact is expected. The troop CP displaces26 through the zone, using terrain that affords effective and continuous27 communication with troop elements and squadron. The troop commander28 positions himself well forward to observe the action of his main effort. The29 location usually depends on where initial threat contact or problem situations30 are expected.31 32 33 EXAMPLE OF AN AREA RECONNAISSANCE (RECCE TROOP)34 35 NOTE: This example features a recce troop; however, the techniques apply36 to the BRT as well.37 38 In this example, the troop has been given the mission of performing an39 area reconnaissance of OBJ LEAD, OBJ COPPER, and OBJ IRON. The40 troop has not been assigned a specific route, and threat dispositions are vague.41 The focus and tempo of the operation allow the troop to move to dismount42 points close to its reconnaissance objectives. A TUAV over flew the troop43 area of operation prior to LD and reported no threat vehicles in zone. The44 troop commander assigns 1st platoon NAIs on OBJ IRON, 2d platoon NAIs45 on OBJ COPPER, and 3d platoon NAIs on OBJ LEAD.46
  • 149. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-41 The troop commander decides that he will move with 2d platoon to1 provide close control of the reconnaissance of OBJ COPPER. The XO2 remains with the CP, which will not cross the LD. The troop commander3 moves the platoons, using checkpoints that make maximum use of cover and4 concealment between the LD and the objectives. The troop crosses PL RAY5 at the time specified in the OPORD simultaneously (see Figure 3-8, part one).6 7 8 Figure 3-8. Area reconnaissance (part one).9 10 11
  • 150. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-42 The platoons, organized two sections each, use bounding overwatch to1 move to their objectives where they occupy dismount points based on the2 level of threat on the objectives. They then prepare to conduct dismounted3 operations.4 Each section places its vehicles in hide positions and establishes local5 security. The troop commander contacts a TUAV ground control station, and6 based on prior coordination, requests a TUAV over flight. As the TUAV reports7 no contact on each of the objectives, the troop commander initiates the platoon’s8 dismounted reconnaissance. Each section conducts dismounted reconnaissance9 to thoroughly reconnoiter the objective (see Figure 3-8, part two).10 11 12 Figure 3-8. Area reconnaissance (part two).13
  • 151. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-43 Upon completion of their reconnaissance, the platoons submit reports and1 establish OPs overwatching their objective areas. The XO collects the reports2 and forwards them to higher headquarters. The platoons establish dismounted3 OPs and continue to monitor their respective NAIs and send updates as4 necessary. The troop continues to observe its objectives until relieved or5 assigned subsequent tasks by the squadron commander.6 7 MULTIDIMENSIONAL ASPECTS OF AREA/ZONE8 RECONNAISSANCE9 Multidimensional area/zone reconnaissance is the directed effort to obtain10 detailed information concerning all threat forces (military, paramilitary,11 civilian, etc), obstacles, civilian demographics, infrastructure (utilities,12 transportation systems, etc) routes, and other terrain within an area/zone (see13 Techniques for Multidimensional Aspects of Area/Zone Reconnaissance14 subparagraph in this section). The reconnaissance may be threat/enemy-15 oriented, terrain-oriented, civilian, infrastructure, or a combination.16 Additionally, the troop commander may focus the reconnaissance effort on a17 specific threat force, such as the threat’s reserve. The troop commander in18 conjunction with the higher headquarters’ staff will identify which critical19 tasks the troop must execute. Commanders must be aware that when the20 area/zone reconnaissance is focused on threat, infrastructure, and terrain, the21 speed of the operation will be extremely slow, especially in complex terrain.22 Multidimensional aspects of area/zone reconnaissance tasks are assigned23 when the threat and civilian situation is vague or when information24 concerning cross-country trafficability as well as other specific terrain25 information is desired. It is appropriate when previous knowledge of the26 terrain is limited or when combat operations have altered the terrain.27 Multidimensional area reconnaissance tasks expand the traditional forms of28 reconnaissance by enculturating soldiers with the local populace throughout29 the area of operations. Understanding the human dimension of the30 environment (political, religious, ethnic, criminal, and transnational) is a31 conduit for decisive actions and analysis of threat center(s) of gravity.32 HUMINT collectors and scouts within the RSTA squadron’s recce troop33 collect and analyze information through contact with community leaders and34 the local populace to assist in developing situational awareness. Although the35 BRT is not fielded with HUMINT collectors, it may be assigned additional36 multidimensional reconnaissance tasks, especially in a SSC or in a stability or37 support operation.38 NOTE: See Figure 3-13, parts one through four, at the end of this section for39 an example scout report for urban areas.40 The ability to conduct multidimensional area/zone reconnaissance will41 assist in defeating or countering asymmetrical threats. Not only must the42 troop investigate terrain characteristics of an area but it must also assess43 demographics, infrastructures, centers of influence, flash-points, and44 personalities, in addition to the traditional missions of area, route, and zone45
  • 152. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-44 Human Intelligence is the intelligence derived from the analysis of information obtained from a human source or a related document by a HUMINT reconnaissance. This will assist higher headquarters in determining what1 military action (or inaction) may influence, positively or negatively, the2 relationship between the society and Army forces. This will provide3 situational understanding to higher headquarters to determine or decide what4 action to take to maintain support of friendly populace, or neutralize or gain5 the support of hostile or neutral factions.6 Rather than avoid urban and other complex terrain, the troop commander,7 augmented with TUAVs from the surveillance troop, has the right package to8 accomplish his primary mission of providing continuous, accurate, and timely9 information in these situations. Recce troops and sensors working in tandem10 with TUAVs provide unprecedented situational awareness and knowledge11 developed throughout a large area of operation, empowering the squadron to12 anticipate, forestall, and dominate threats. Technologies coupled with human13 assessment (scout/HUMINT collectors) provide real time intelligence for14 targeting with precision munitions.15 Multidimensional area/zone reconnaissance16 requires the commander and other leaders within17 the troop, specifically the troop HUMINT18 collectors, to develop relationships with local19 leaders to determine information that may be20 pertinent to the overall operation. The HUMINT21 collectors are the subject matter experts in dealing with civilian personnel. They22 provide training to the scouts so they can operate effectively in largely23 populated areas where multidimensional information is key to the unit’s24 success. Soldier-based, human-intensive intelligence compensates for the25 limitations of equipment-based sensors, which are optimized to provide26 situational awareness in open and rolling terrain for conventional force-on-force27 operations.28 29 Critical Tasks for Multidimensional Aspects of Area/Zone30 Reconnaissance31 Multidimensional area/zone reconnaissance is a deliberate, time-32 consuming process if not specifically focused (see Commander’s33 Reconnaissance Guidance earlier in this chapter). During a multidimensional34 area/zone reconnaissance, the troop accomplishes the critical tasks listed35 below, unless directed otherwise by the squadron commander. The squadron36 commander, depending on the conditions of METT-TC, may select specific37 critical tasks for the troop to accomplish.38 • Find all threat that can affect the mission.39 • Recognize threat and countermeasures (identify threat activities and40 recommend threat probable COAs).41 • Determine the size, location, and composition of the society42 demographics (e.g., race, sex, age, religion, language, tribe, clan, class,43 education, history, government, and/or factions).44
  • 153. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-45 • Establish and maintain contact with local civilian and military1 leadership.2 • Reconnoiter the society to determine the regional, local, and3 neighborhood situations.4 • Determine the needs of the society to determine operation/actions5 needed to support a friendly populace, or to neutralize or gain support6 of a hostile or neutral faction.7 • Identify key municipal infrastructure that can affect military operations8 (utilities, sewage, communications).9 • Determine media activities.10 • Clarify organizations and methods of operation for terrorists,11 transnational groups, and ethnic centers of power.12 • Identify local populous allegiances to factions, religious groups, or13 other organizations.14 • Report all reconnaissance information.15 • Reconnoiter specific terrain (see area, zone, route reconnaissance16 critical tasks).17 Techniques for Multidimensional Aspects of Area/Zone18 Reconnaissance19 When the troop receives area/zone reconnaissance tasks, the assigned area is20 identified as the terrain inside a solid, continuous boundary (see Figure 3-9).21 Phase lines may also be used to identify the troop’s operational area (see Figure22 3-10). The troop may have unit boundaries that also identify its operational23 area in a multidimensional reconnaissance mission (see Figure 3-11).24 25 Figure 3-9. Troop reconnaissance defined by one continuous boundary; platoon defined by boundaries. Figure 3-10. Troop reconnaissance defined by phase line; platoon defined by phase line. Figure 3-11. Troop reconnaissance defined by boundary; platoon defined by NAI. 26
  • 154. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-46 Ensure the troop has all the known information and intelligence of the1 operational environment. Expect to be supported by surveillance troop assets.2 TUAV(s) may support infiltration and reconnaissance to provide early3 warning and reconnaissance of areas that are restricted to the ground troop.4 Always prepare for TUAVs to recon NAIs should they become available.5 MASINT assets should be focused on restricted terrain or high-speed avenues6 of approach to provide early warning of potential threat movements. Always7 request additional SIGINT and IMINT support found at squadron and higher8 ISR links through the ATCCS tactical internet. This will tremendously9 support the troops TLP and IPB as it plans and executes its multidimensional10 area/zone reconnaissance. (See Chapter 6 for ISR capabilities.)11 Conduct detailed map reconnaissance as well as imagery analysis (when12 available, always request imagery or video) to plan the reconnaissance13 mission. Study the terrain to determine how it will support movement. View14 the terrain to determine how it supports not only friendly mission but also the15 threat. Detailed IPB is the foundation for a successful mission.16 Planning the movement to the area is the first step. Select the route(s),17 establish a march order on each route, and specify a start point, checkpoints,18 and a release point. Since dismounted movement is the preferred method of19 reconnaissance, identify suitable concealed locations to position vehicles prior20 to conducting the reconnaissance. If practical, position vehicles to allow the21 crew to utilize the onboard optics, such as LRAS3, to assist in observation and22 provide overwatch. Identify the dismount point when necessary. If using an23 infiltration route(s), identify the route, start and release points, rally points24 along the route, and establish an order of march (see Infiltration paragraph in25 Section II of this chapter). Use a movement technique that keeps the troop26 moving securely. If possible, avoid contact with the threat while en route.27 Report and bypass (IAW commander’s intent). Be careful when approaching28 the area to begin the reconnaissance. Under most situations, conduct29 dismounted movement and reconnaissance patrols. Use common sense; avoid30 known threat forces outside the area where the reconnaissance will be31 conducted.32 Enclose the area within the troop’s area of responsibility with phase lines,33 continuous boundary, or unit boundary. Draw a line of departure, an LOA,34 and lateral boundaries to facilitate movement and terrain responsibility.35 Divide the troop area/zone into platoon zones (if necessary) to establish36 responsibility and to facilitate movement and control. Establish platoon areas37 of responsibility by assigning platoon areas defined by a solid continuous38 boundary, zones defined by boundaries or phase lines, or establish NAIs to39 focus the platoon’s reconnaissance. Add phase lines along identifiable terrain40 to control movement through the area. Place contact points at the intersection41 of the platoon boundaries and all phase lines. Place TIRS or checkpoints on42 the map to identify specific areas or features for reference. TIRS/checkpoints43 help focus reconnaissance, identify danger areas, control movement, orient44 observation, and control fires, for example. The more TIRS/checkpoints the45
  • 155. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-47 better it is to control the mission and issue FRAGOs when necessary. TIRS1 are the best control measure for FBCB2 since they do not clutter the screen.2 Determine if the troop will move in a troop formation. There may be3 certain situations that prohibit troop formation. Platoons may need to move4 independently for infiltration, for example. Additionally, the platoon’s5 reconnaissance objectives may be specific and dispersed over a large area that6 does not support a troop formation. The troop may be given specific NAIs to7 reconnoiter and the squadron is not concerned with the rest of the area8 between the given NAIs. In this case, the troop merely has to plan how to9 move to those specific NAIs based on the threat and terrain. Infiltration routes10 are determined if there is a high threat. Routes are established for tactical11 movement if there is a low threat.12 If the area/zone for which the troop is responsible supports a troop13 formation (6 to 10 kilometers), the troop commander may use several14 formation techniques (see Chapter 2 for movement formations). Platoon and15 troop reconnaissance formations are used especially if detailed reconnaissance16 is needed throughout the troop’s assigned operational environment. Use a17 troop vee or line formation to conduct an area reconnaissance if the threat is18 high and the trail platoon is needed to react to contact from the lead platoons.19 Troop vee is used if the lead platoons are focused on terrain and identification20 of HUMINT and infrastructure reconnaissance intelligence requirements21 while the trail platoon concentrates on the HUMINT and infrastructure22 intelligence requirements. Platoons deploy abreast from the release points to23 accomplish all the reconnaissance tasks. They move out across the line of24 departure first.25 The mortar section moves through the center of the troop’s26 reconnaissance, remaining in position to range from 3 to 3.5 kilometers27 forward of the lead elements in the recce platoons. The mortar section may28 also follow one of the recce platoons, depending on where initial threat29 contact is expected. The troop CP displaces through the zone, using terrain30 that affords effective and continuous communication with troop elements and31 squadron. The troop commander positions himself well forward to observe32 the action of his main effort. The location usually depends on where initial33 threat contact or problem situations are expected.34 35 36 EXAMPLE OF AN AREA RECONNAISSANCE WITH37 MULTIDIMENSIONAL RECONNAISSANCE ASPECTS (SSC)38 The troop conducts its area reconnaissance in an area defined by PL SPUR39 to PL PISTOL between PL PONY and PL QUARTER (see Figure 3-12). The40 purpose of the reconnaissance is to determine how the brigade will best attack41 without interdiction from the enemy/threat and civilians. It is also important to42 determine what infrastructure can support friendly forces.43
  • 156. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-48 The focus of the mission is threat, terrain, society, and infrastructure. The1 troop will determine the threat forces in the area, particularly the urban terrain2 vicinity of NAI 2 (OBJ BULL) and NAI 1. OBJ BULL is an infantry battalion3 (supporting effort) objective. The infantry battalion will be seizing this4 objective (key road intersection) to support the movement of a coalition force5 into this war-torn country. The troop will identify where and which factional6 elements support US and coalition forces in the area and determine the best7 route for the battalion’s axis of attack. It will conduct focused HUMINT8 collection of NAIs 1, 2, and 4 and determine if the water utilities in Dyer (NAI9 1) will support friendly CSS needs. If possible, it will liaison with local officials10 in NAIs 1 and 2. The unit has reports from SOF that Dyer (NAI 1) supports US11 forces. Hostile paramilitary forces occupy the town of Custer (NAI 2). (See12 Figure 3-13, parts one through four, for an example of information requirements13 given to the platoon to conduct HUMINT collection.)14 The tempo is stealthy, deliberate and there is time available to conduct15 dismounted recon patrols. The engagement criteria are IAW ROE. Only use16 direct fire for self-defense, mortars to suppress threat contact, and joint fires17 for HPTs.18 19 Figure 3-12. Multidimensional area reconnaissance.20 21
  • 157. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-49 TUAVs reconnoiter the infiltration lane to identify possible threat1 dismounted/mounted forces to support infiltration of 1st platoon into the area.2 MASINT section from surveillance troop establishes OP vicinity of TIRS 313 oriented towards NAI 2 to detect threat forces in the area and to support the4 reece troop’s reconnaissance.5 1st platoon conducts dismounted reconnaissance of infiltration lane into6 the area of operations during limited visibility 24 hours prior to the rest of the7 troop. The platoon establishes surveillance of NAI 2 from OPs 1 and 2, and8 conducts infiltration during hours of limited visibility and area reconnaissance9 of NAI 2 with dismounted reconnaissance patrols; focus is on determining10 where paramilitary forces are defending. The platoon determines the11 demographics of OBJ BULL.12 2d platoon conducts a combination of mounted and dismounted zone13 reconnaissance from PL SPUR to PL PISTOL between PL PONY and PL14 COLT. Focus is to determine threat in area, factional demographics, and15 potential route (terrain) that would support the infantry battalion’s attack on16 OBJ BULL. Once reconnaissance is complete, 2d platoon establishes a screen17 with OPs vicinity of OP 6, oriented north to determine threat forces moving18 from the north, and OP 5, oriented west (NAIs 4 and 6).19 3d platoon conducts a detailed HUMINT-oriented area reconnaissance of20 NAI 1 to determine disposition of factional forces in the town of Dyer. It will21 determine if their water utilities will support CSS needs of the brigade. Once22 reconnaissance is complete, the platoon establishes a screen with OPs vicinity23 of OP 4, oriented north to determine threat forces moving from the north, and24 OP 3, oriented east (NAIs 4 and 6).25 The platoons will determine locations to move vehicles to minimize26 detection as they conduct their reconnaissance. Headquarters will follow 3d27 platoon and establish position vicinity of TIRS 50. Mortars establish mortar28 firing point vicinity TIRS 60 and prepare to move to 41, 43, 45, 50, and 53.29 Troop CP (XO) remains at TAA BUFORD to track and report reconnaissance30 information and to link up with infantry battalion prior to their attack. The XO31 will coordinate and pass the information/intelligence determined in the area32 reconnaissance to the infantry, facilitating our reconnaissance pull of the33 battalion.34 35
  • 158. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-50 1 Figure 3-13. Example scout report that supports information requirements for2 urban areas (part one).3 4
  • 159. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-51 1 Figure 3-13. Example scout report that supports information requirements for2 urban areas (part two).3 4
  • 160. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-52 1 Figure 3-13. Example scout report that supports information requirements for2 urban areas (part three).3
  • 161. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-53 1 Figure 3-13. Example scout report that supports information requirements for2 urban areas (part four).3 4
  • 162. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-54 SECTION IV. ROUTE RECONNAISSANCE1 2 3 Route reconnaissance is a directed effort to gain detailed information4 about a specific route and the terrain on either side of the route that the threat5 could use to influence movement along the route. In a permissive6 environment, a route may be assigned to each platoon, depending on the7 terrain. If threat contact is likely, as in a smaller-scale contingency or a major8 theater of war, only one route may be reconnoitered. A route reconnaissance9 is often a specified or implied task in a zone or area reconnaissance mission.10 11 12 CRITICAL TASKS13 During a route reconnaissance, the following critical tasks must be14 accomplished unless the troop commander directs otherwise:15 • Reconnoiter and determine trafficability of the route.16 • Reconnoiter all terrain the threat can use to place direct fires on the17 route.18 • Reconnoiter all built-up areas along the route.19 • Reconnoiter all lateral routes in the area of responsibility.20 • Inspect and classify all bridges along the route.21 • Locate fords or crossing sites near all bridges along the route.22 • Inspect and classify all overpasses, underpasses, and culverts.23 • Reconnoiter all defiles along the route; possibly clear all defiles of24 enemy and obstacles within its capability, or locate a bypass.25 • Locate mines, obstacles, and barriers, and within its capability, clear26 the route.27 • Locate a bypass around obstacles and contaminated areas.28 • Locate a bypass around or, if the mission requires, routes through29 built-up areas.30 • Report route information.31 • Find and report all threats that can influence movement along the32 route.33 34 35 TECHNIQUES36 The troop commander directs the troop to conduct a route reconnaissance37 as a mission or as a specific task in another mission. This section discusses38 route reconnaissance in the context of an assigned troop mission.39
  • 163. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-55 The troop commander considers several factors in formulating his concept.1 • Start point, release point, and designation of the route.2 • Mission to be performed at the start point and after reaching the3 release point.4 • Time the mission is to start, and if required, be completed.5 • Critical points along the route identified as checkpoints.6 • Any constraints or restrictions.7 • IPB information on the route. IPB provides critical information on the8 enemy and terrain. Threats may be encountered in two basic forms:9 − Ambushes along the route in close or restricted terrain or tied to10 obstacles along the route.11 − Attack by long-range direct or indirect fires from dominating12 terrain along the route.13 14 Using IPB results and an analysis of the terrain, the troop commander will15 gain an appreciation of the danger areas within his zone and the nature of the16 potential threat. From this information, he can determine how much terrain on17 each flank of the route must be reconnoitered and his task organization. Any18 constraints or restrictions may also influence how much terrain is19 reconnoitered.20 21 Lateral boundaries, LD, LOA, route, and a single phase line are used along22 with TIRS for graphic control on FBCB2. (Map grid lines cannot be23 completely suppressed for printing.) The troop commander’s graphical24 control measures for a route reconnaissance should incorporate the key troop25 graphics (boundaries, checkpoints, TIRS and phase lines) in order for the26 troop to report effectively and clearly to the troop commander and CP. The27 graphics should be kept as simple as possible to avoid screen clutter. The28 troop commander may elect to draw a boundary from 2 to 5 kilometers on29 either side of the route to define how wide a reconnaissance of the adjacent30 terrain he desires. Checkpoints or TIRS are used for referencing key points.31 A line of departure may be depicted if needed, and normally a limit of32 advance is shown from 3 to 5 kilometers beyond the route release point.33 Again, simplicity is key. See Figure 3-14.34 35
  • 164. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-56 1 Figure 3-14. Sample FBCB2 route recon overlay.2 The troop normally performs a tactical road march to the line of departure3 and deploys to execute the reconnaissance of the route. Based on the amount4 of intelligence known about the threat, the troop commander determines how5 much security is required for the move forward to the line of departure. Also6 the commander should consider the effect his final disposition of forces will7 have on the troop’s follow-on mission.8 9 EXAMPLE OF A ROUTE RECONNAISSANCE10 In a stability operations scenario, a recce troop has been ordered to11 conduct a route reconnaissance of two routes in its sector. The troop12 commander has organized the troop into a split vee. Two platoons are moving13 abreast, conducting an area reconnaissance, with one platoon following,14 focusing on the two routes. 1st and 3d platoons cross the LD (PL NATE)15 abreast, using the two-section organization, and reconnoiter the terrain on16 either side of ROUTE SABER and ROUTE SPUR, up to PL ALEX. The17 platoons have a multidimensional reconnaissance focus and are looking for18 illegal factional checkpoints, displaced persons, and propaganda hostile19 towards US forces. The troop commander maneuvers behind 1st platoon, with20 the mortars located nearby. 3d platoon conducts reconnaissance around the21 outskirts of the village in its zone, and explores routes into the village that22 intersect ROUTE SPUR. Additionally the HUMINT teams from 3d platoon23 meet several of the local civilians in the village and collect HUMINT to be24 forwarded to the troop CP. 1st platoon scouts search the woods near25 checkpoints 11 and 12 for threat activity. The platoons scan the terrain north26
  • 165. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-57 of PL ALEX and report set. The troop commander initiates the route1 reconnaissance by 2d platoon.2 2d platoon conducts a detailed route reconnaissance and classifies the bridges3 north of PL NATE. When 2d platoon is within a kilometer of the lead platoon,4 the commander initiates movement of 1st and 3d platoons across PL ALEX. 2d5 platoon classifies the route through the village in 3d platoon’s sector. The troop6 commander bounds closely behind 1st platoon and observes its actions. He7 controls the tempo of the lead platoons to prohibit them from leaving the route8 reconnaissance platoon behind. He ensures that mortar fires can range three to9 four kilometers in front of all scouts. The troop CP, first sergeant, and medics10 bound forward to concealed positions. (See Figure 3-15, part one.)11 12 13 Figure 3-15. Route reconnaissance (part one).14
  • 166. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-58 1st and 3d platoons continue to reconnoiter in zone up to PL JUSTIN. The1 platoons search the wooded areas for the threat, and explore the high-speed2 lateral routes to the east and west of ROUTES SABER and SPUR. 1st platoon3 clears the shoulders and makes a visual inspection of the defile on ROUTE4 SABER at checkpoint 19. 1st and 3d platoons move forward to search the5 outskirts of the village at their coordinating point. As with the first village, the6 platoons look for threat forces along the roads into the village. The platoon7 HUMINT collectors question local civilians as to the location of possible8 threat forces. Additionally, HUMINT collectors use their digital cameras to9 photograph the village, focusing on key infrastructures. The mortar section10 follows the 1st platoon and establishes a firing position on the edge of the11 woods north of checkpoint 19. (See Figure 3-15, part two.)12 13 14 Figure 3-15. Route reconnaissance (part two).15
  • 167. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-59 2d platoon continues classifying ROUTES SABER and SPUR. At the1 defile near checkpoint 19, scouts use mine detectors to check shoulders of the2 route to ensure it is free of mines. The troop CP moves to a concealed3 position on high ground near checkpoint 12. The first sergeant moves the4 medics into covered and concealed positions in the village south of checkpoint5 16. The mission is complete when the troop reaches the LOA, PL SEAN. The6 platoons forward all reports to the troop CP where the XO consolidates them7 and forwards them to higher8 9 10 11 SECTION V. ZONE RECONNAISSANCE12 13 14 Zone reconnaissance is the directed effort to obtain detailed information15 concerning all threat forces, routes, obstacles, and terrain within a zone16 defined by boundaries. A zone reconnaissance is assigned when the enemy17 situation is vague or when information concerning cross-country trafficability18 is desired. It is appropriate when previous knowledge of the terrain is limited19 or when combat operations have altered the terrain. The reconnaissance may20 be enemy-oriented, terrain-oriented, or a combination of the two.21 Additionally, the troop commander may focus the reconnaissance effort on a22 specific threat force such as the reserve. The commander must identify which23 critical tasks the troop must execute. Commanders must be aware that when24 the reconnaissance is focused on both enemy and terrain, the speed of the25 operation will be extremely slow, especially in complex terrain.26 27 28 CRITICAL TASKS29 30 Zone reconnaissance is a deliberate, time-consuming process if not31 specifically focused. During a zone reconnaissance, the troop accomplishes32 the critical tasks listed below unless specifically directed otherwise by the33 squadron commander. The brigade/squadron commander, depending on the34 conditions of METT-TC, may select specific critical tasks for the troop to35 accomplish.36 • Reconnoiter all terrain within the zone.37 • Inspect and classify all bridges within the zone.38 • Locate fords or crossing sites near all bridges in the zone.39 • Inspect and classify all overpasses, underpasses, and culverts.40 • Locate and possibly clear all mines, obstacles, and barriers in the zone41 within its capability.42 • Locate a bypass around BUAs, obstacles, and contaminated areas.43
  • 168. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-60 • Locate and report all threat forces within the zone.1 • Report reconnaissance information.2 3 In addition to the critical tasks, the troop must be prepared to conduct4 other tasks as directed by the commander. These additional tasks may include5 the following:6 7 • Recognize threat and countermeasures (identify threat activities and8 recommend threat probable COAs).9 • Determine the size, location, and composition of the society10 demographics (e.g., race, sex, age, religion, language, tribe, clan, class,11 education, history, government, and/or factions).12 • Establish and maintain contact with local civilian and military13 leadership.14 • Reconnoiter the society to determine the regional, local, and15 neighborhood situations.16 • Determine the needs of the society to determine operation/actions17 needed to support a friendly populace, or to neutralize or gain support18 of a hostile or neutral faction.19 • Identify key municipal infrastructure that can affect military operations20 (utilities, sewage, communications).21 • Determine media activities.22 • Clarify organizations and methods of operation for terrorists,23 transnational groups, and ethnic centers of power.24 • Identify local populous allegiances to factions, religious groups, or25 other organizations.26 27 28 TECHNIQUES29 30 The troop can effectively reconnoiter a zone from 6 to 10 kilometers wide.31 If stretched any farther, the troop quickly exceeds its ability to accomplish the32 critical tasks. The troop may be responsible for a 10-15 kilometer frontage, so33 guidance concerning focus and tempo is critical. One technique is to conduct34 an area reconnaissance of critical places identified by the commander.35 36 When the troop receives a zone reconnaissance mission, the zone is usually37 identified by lateral boundaries. The line of departure and a reconnaissance38 objective or LOA are specified. The commander should divide the troop zone39 into platoon zones. Use caution when drawing the platoon boundaries. Make40
  • 169. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-61 sure they are on easily identifiable terrain and not a high-speed avenue of1 approach. The number of critical tasks within the troop zone and terrain2 restrictions should guide the commander in determining the location of the3 platoon boundaries. Doctrinal distances are not always the best solution if one4 platoon will be overtasked.5 Add phase lines every 5 to 8 kilometers on easily identifiable terrain to6 control progress of the troop through the zone. Place contact points near the7 intersection of the boundary and all phase lines. Ensure the contact points8 provide, at a minimum, the potential for concealment from threat observation to9 allow the exchange of information between flank units. Use checkpoints to focus10 the efforts of platoons and to assist in maneuvering the troop (see Figure 3-16).11 Use a troop vee or line to conduct zone reconnaissance. As dismounted12 scouts reconnoiter the zone, their vehicles follow and provide overwatch,13 keying their movement off the dismounts’ forward progress. Place vehicles in14 positions they can use their optics to observe forward of the dismounts. The15 distance from the scouts is determined by the terrain and enemy situation. If16 the terrain permits, the scouts work in a platoon-vee, allowing the platoon17 leader or platoon to overwatch their wingmen and dismounts conducting18 reconnaissance forward.19 20 21 Figure 3-16. Sample zone reconnaissance graphics using TIRS.22 23
  • 170. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-62 Troop lateral boundaries, platoon boundary, and limit of advance are1 defined along with templated threat locations and two reconnaissance2 objective areas. (Map grid lines cannot be completely suppressed for printing.)3 4 If assigned to the troop, move the mortar section center of the troop zone5 to range forward of the scouts. The range forward of the scouts is determined6 by the scouts’ ability to acquire the threat. The mortars may move under the7 control of the FIST, or eavesdrop on the troop net and key their movement off8 the progress of the platoons. Regardless of who controls mortar movement,9 the CP and the FIST track the mortar position constantly to ensure they can10 support the scouts. The BRT XO must maintain constant communications11 with the brigade’s supporting artillery. He, in conjunction with the STRIKER12 platoon leader, is responsible for ensuring timely fire support.13 NOTE: If the mortar section is busy firing missions and computing fire data,14 they may not be able to stay abreast of the friendly situation.15 Therefore, the FIST or XO should be ready to control the mortars16 displacement.17 18 The XO displaces the troop CP through the zone using terrain that affords19 effective and continuous communications with troop elements and higher20 headquarters. The 1SG is prepared to move the troop trains forward if the scouts21 require medical evacuation. The troop commander positions himself well forward22 to observe the actions of one platoon or the other. His position usually depends on23 where he expects initial enemy contact or problems to occur.24 25 Any commander who orders a zone reconnaissance mission must26 remember the number and complexity of the tasks to be accomplished. If he27 wants a faster tempo, he must prioritize reconnaissance tasks for the troop.28 Commanders must guard carefully against overtasking the29 reconnaissance assets. The width of the zone that the troop can effectively30 reconnoiter is not clearly defined. It is dependent on the time available, the31 depth of the zone, the complexity of the terrain, the nature of the threat, the32 troop’s task organization, other intelligence assets being integrated, and the33 critical tasks the troop is being directed to perform. Because the enemy34 situation is vague and knowledge of the terrain is limited, the course of action35 selected must also provide a good measure of protection for the troop as it36 executes the mission. When considering techniques for conducting a zone37 reconnaissance, the scheme of maneuver has to be flexible. The troop38 commander must convey his intent to subordinates so they can act quickly and39 without orders.40 41 42 EXAMPLE OF A BRT ZONE RECONNAISSANCE43 The brigade has deployed to a major theater of war and is opposed by a44 conventional threat. The brigade is planning to conduct an attack and is45 preceded in its AO by a troop from the division cavalry squadron. The46
  • 171. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-63 division cavalry conducted a zone reconnaissance and destroyed the threat’s1 security zone and identified the main defensive belt. It provided initial2 information on the terrain in the brigade’s zone and identified two possible3 axes of attack.4 5 The troop commander has been tasked to conduct a zone reconnaissance.6 The brigade commander’s reconnaissance guidance was formulated to support7 the brigade’s attack within the next 24 hours. The troop’s focus is to establish8 early observation on brigade target areas of interest (TAI), confirm battalion-9 size axes of advance, and locate any remaining threat security posts that can10 affect the brigade’s mission. The troop’s engagement criteria allow it to use11 indirect fire against up to squad-size threat dismounts and stationary vehicles.12 13 The BRT commander will employ the troop by echelon. 1st Platoon,14 reinforced with a STRIKER section, will infiltrate to observe the brigade’s15 TAIs. Initially, the tempo will be stealthy; the engagement criteria are16 necessarily limited to avoiding contact. The remainder of the troop will17 conduct a traditional zone reconnaissance to ascertain the best axis of attack18 for the brigade. The tempo, for this phase, is aggressive, with engagement19 criteria that support it. The troop commander will mass platoons to destroy20 individual vehicles and OPs.21 22 The troop executive officer coordinates forward passage of lines and23 infiltration lane for 1st Platoon. He also ensures the brigade has pre-24 positioned artillery support and additional ISR assets to support the25 infiltration. Due to the depth of the zone, the platoon conducts a mounted26 infiltration. The infiltration is conducted by section. The platoon is27 augmented by the troop’s 31U, communications specialist. He will assist in28 establishing a retransmission site to support the infiltrating platoon. The troop29 commander has positioned the remaining platoon in an attack position to serve30 as a QRF for the infiltration phase. The troop CP is constantly updated by the31 supporting ISR assets; they are monitoring movement and signal traffic along32 the infiltration lane. The ISR assets will provide early warning if threat is33 likely (see Figure 3-17, part one).34
  • 172. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-64 1 Figure 3-17. Zone reconnaissance (part one).2
  • 173. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-65 Under the cover of darkness, 1st Platoon begins its infiltration with the1 Alpha section leading. The section moves along Lane SNAKE; a lane plotted2 to provide the greatest amount of cover and concealment. Alpha section has3 the task to emplace the retransmission site and ensure it is operational. The4 platoon leader in Charlie section departs next. He has positioned himself to5 best command and control the platoon. The platoon sergeant with the Bravo6 section is last in order of movement. The platoon sergeant is positioned to7 provide CASEVAC back to the LD. As the platoon progresses along the8 infiltration lane, the supporting PROPHET systems intercept radio9 transmissions within the military bandwidth. The troop conducts actions on10 contact. The commander orders the platoon to cease movement, and awaits a11 triangulation of the transmitter’s location. This is quickly accomplished and12 sent to the troop. The threat unit has passed across the infiltration lane13 without gaining contact with 1st Platoon. The platoon continues the mission14 and the QRF stands down to REDCON 2.15 1st Platoon continues to its templated dismount points and prepares to16 establish its surveillance of assigned TAIs. The dismount sections conduct17 precombat checks and move to their observation points. Once the dismounted18 squads, augmented by the STRIKER teams, occupy positions, they develop19 their observation cards (both the trigger and the target of the TAI are20 observed). The troop FIST establishes no fire areas around each OP. The21 troop CP ensures the dismounted OPs and the vehicle locations are passed22 higher and updated in FBCB2 and maneuver control system (MCS). The23 platoon begins its observation and refines the brigade’s targets. The refined24 targets are passed digitally to the troop CP and the FIST via FBCB2. The25 troop FIST updates the targets in the advanced field artillery tactical data26 system (AFATDS) and the brigade FSO approves the target refinements and27 passes the list to the field artillery battalion.28 Once 1st Platoon reports set in their OPs, the troop lowers its REDCON29 status to REDCON 4 and conducts its rest plan. The troop CP continues to30 monitor the situation and update the brigade. The troop XO contacts the lead31 task force and coordinates with the task force’s scout platoon. The BRT will32 “pull” the lead task force to best axis of attack. FM communications and33 FBCB2 will link the task force scouts to the BRT. This method will ensure a34 smooth and rapid reconnaissance handover to the brigade’s lead task force.35 After stand-to, the troop deploys along the LD to covered and concealed36 positions. The troop crosses the LD, PL GRANT, abreast with the troop37 commander and FIST moving with Charlie section of 2d Platoon. The platoon38 maneuvers through the zone in a zigzag pattern, oriented on the two identified39 axes of attack. This method ensures the zone is properly reconnoitered to40 accomplish all critical tasks specified by the troop commander. The platoon41 determines both the open terrain and the trafficability of the attack routes42 within the sections’ zone. The troop CP, first sergeant, and medics hold in43 place.44
  • 174. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-66 The scout platoon continues reconnaissance up to the river (PL1 STEWART). They take a close look at the dominant terrain near checkpoint2 21. As the platoons approach the river, scouts move into covered and3 concealed positions, dismount, and visually search the dominant terrain on the4 north side of the river. The scouts inspect the bridge at checkpoint 11 and5 determine that it will support only up to 40 tons. Bravo section confirms there6 is a fording site with a rock bottom just east of the blown bridge at checkpoint7 32. It will support heavy armored traffic. Scouts from Charlie section verify8 that a good fording site exists near checkpoint 22. (See Figure 3-17, part9 two.)10 11 12 Figure 3-17. Zone reconnaissance (part two).13
  • 175. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-67 As the scouts continue reconnaissance towards PL LEE, the troop CP bounds1 forward to high ground near checkpoint 21. The troop first sergeant, with the2 medics, crosses the river and moves into the woods on the northern bank. 2d3 Platoon observes two stationary BRDM-2s on the high ground near checkpoint4 12. The platoon leader reports to the commander and adds that his assessment is5 that the position is a security outpost. The platoon engages with indirect fire from6 the supporting artillery battalion. The scouts in contact use their target designators7 to develop a ten-digit polar plot call for fire. As the rounds impact, the outpost8 begins to withdraw and one BRDM is destroyed. Scout dismount teams from 2d9 Platoon move in quickly, capture two wounded prisoners, and search the vehicle10 and personnel. The 2d platoon leader orders one scout dismount team to stay and11 secure the prisoners. The 1SG leads the medics to the location of 2d Platoon12 dismounts and the EPWs. (See Figure 3-17, part three.)13 14 Figure 3-17. Zone reconnaissance (part three).15
  • 176. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-68 The troop continues reconnaissance while moving toward PL LEE. The1 troop has continually reported reconnaissance information to higher. The2 troop has updated the FBCB2 and recommended to the brigade commander to3 use axis BLUE. The task force scouts have established traffic control points4 along axis BLUE to facilitate rapid movement. The troop determines the5 dominant terrain near checkpoint 33 is clear of threat forces. The XO6 recovers the dismounts as he moves the CP forward. The troop commander7 requests a SITREP from the platoons. Once complete, the commander orders8 2d Platoon to complete its reconnaissance up to the LOA. The XO continues9 to collect and transmit reconnaissance reports to the brigade.10 11 As 2d Platoon coordinates with the task force scouts, 1st Platoon observes12 movement around TAIs 1 and 3. 1st Platoon has confirmed the division13 cavalry troop’s report of the location of the threat’s main defensive positions.14 1st Platoon conducted dismounted patrols to locate the enemy’s obstacle belt15 and possible breach sites. The OPs, while conducting their surveillance,16 observe two mechanized infantry companies moving into prepared positions,17 overwatching the obstacles. The platoon immediately reports contact across18 the FM command net to the troop commander. The 1st platoon leader19 confirms the SIR, target criteria, and calls for indirect fire on the threat. The20 troop CP compiles the SITREP and sends a FBCB2 message to the brigade.21 The brigade S2 confirms the TAI attack criteria and recommends firing the22 targets. The STRIKERs observe the targets and adjust the fires for maximum23 effect. (See Figure 3-17, part four.)24
  • 177. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-69 1 Figure 3-17. Zone reconnaissance (part four).2 3 Under this protection, the remainder of the troop, primarily dismounted,4 reconnoiters to the flanks and rear to develop the situation. The troop5
  • 178. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-70 commander acknowledges the report, and moves immediately to link up with1 the 2d platoon leader. The troop commander orders 2d Platoon to continue its2 reconnaissance to locate the threat’s flank. 2d Platoon is organized in a three-3 section, two-vehicle configuration; the platoon leader is with the Charlie4 section. The platoon leader sends his Bravo section forward on the threat’s5 right and his Alpha section on the left to determine if other forces from the6 flanks or rear mutually support the threat. The Bravo section sergeant with a7 two-man dismount team moves in closer and confirms that the threat consists of8 six BMP-2s, three T-72s, and three squad-sized positions of dismounted9 soldiers. The scouts from Alpha section identify the left flank of the threat10 position and discover the flank is protected by obstacles and is exposed to direct11 fires.12 While en route, the troop commander tells the 2d Platoon to continue13 reconnaissance forward of PL BUFORD and determine if other threat forces14 are moving to support the threat in zone. The troop commander directs 2d15 Platoon to position scouts and STRIKERs to observe likely threat avenues of16 approach. 1st Platoon scouts move to checkpoint 24, link up with the lead17 task force platoon scouts, and guide them into positions to observe the threat.18 The troop is positioned to conduct reconnaissance handover to the lead19 task force of the brigade and to provide early warning of threat reinforcement.20 1st Platoon is supporting the battle handover by direct coordination with the21 task force scouts and continuing target acquisition on the objective. 2d22 Platoon has established OPs observing AAs for the approach of the threat’s23 combined arms reserve.24 25 26 SECTION VI. SURVEILLANCE FUNDAMENTALS,27 CAPABILITIES, AND LIMITATIONS28 29 Surveillance is maintaining observation of the threat or named area of30 interest. Information about the threat is always critical. Losing contact with a31 threat force can have a decisive impact on friendly operations. Once under32 surveillance, threat activities are monitored continuously unless observers33 conduct handover or are ordered to break contact. An entire platoon can be34 utilized to maintain contact or a dismounted scout who first makes contact35 with the threat can be assigned to maintain contact. In either case, close36 coordination is required in passing the threat from one scout to another or37 having one scout team maintain constant surveillance. When responsibility for38 observation is passed from one element to another, so is the responsibility for39 maintaining the associated icon in FBCB2. Additionally, the troop may be40 required to hand over threat targets to another unit, such as task force scouts,41 TUAVs, Army aviation, GSR, and IREMBASS.42 43 44
  • 179. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-71 FUNDAMENTALS1 2 Prior to execution of the surveillance mission, the squadron S2 should3 provide the troop commander with detailed information related to the terrain4 where the surveillance mission will be conducted. Extracting data from his5 terrain analysis conducted using ASAS, MCS, and DTSS, the S2 can focus the6 troop surveillance efforts on specific terrain locations and objectives. He can7 identify exact locations that can be used to monitor NAIs.8 Successful surveillance operations are planned and performed with the9 following three fundamentals in mind:10 • Maximize surveillance assets.11 • Maintain continuous surveillance of all assigned NAIs/TAIs.12 • Report all information rapidly and accurately.13 14 Maximize Surveillance Assets15 16 Scouts are the “eyes and ears” of the commander. Previous surveillance17 doctrine focused on surveillance as part of a reconnaissance mission that may18 still be appropriate in some situations. But with the increasing likelihood of19 noncontiguous operations and expansion of the unit’s battlespace, troop20 surveillance operations may be oriented in multiple directions over large21 areas. One platoon may be utilized in a highly visible show of force22 checkpoint, while another conducts mounted surveillance of an intersection,23 or while it conducts a covert surveillance mission of a suspected weapons24 storage facility. The troop must integrate a wide range of sensors, to include25 TUAVs and ground sensors, to ensure maximum effectiveness and26 survivability of these platoons.27 28 Maintain Continuous Surveillance of all Assigned NAIs29 30 During the IPB process, the S2 will identify surveillance requirements31 related to the enemy and terrain. These requirements, combined with the32 CCIR/PIR, are used as tools to direct the surveillance efforts of the troop.33 Surveillance efforts may be focused on terrain features, a specific area (such34 as a built-up area or intersection), or a threat force. If surveillance is35 conducted on a threat force, contact with the threat should be gained through36 use of the scouts’ long-range acquisition capability rather than a chance37 meeting with the threat. TUAVs provide the scouts maximum stand-off range38 and limit their exposure to threat acquisition systems. Once contact is39 established, surveillance of the threat force is not broken unless ordered by40 higher headquarters.41 42
  • 180. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-72 Report All Information Rapidly and Accurately1 The brigade commander may base his battle planning and tactical2 decisions on information obtained through the troop’s surveillance efforts.3 Intelligence loses its relevance as it ages. The troop must accurately report4 what it observes in a timely manner. Digitization speeds both the accuracy of5 the intelligence information gathered as well as the timeliness with which it6 can be sent. Using FBCB2 and FM, the troop can transmit this vital combat7 information in near-real time.8 CAPABILITIES9 The troop can—10 • Conduct mounted and dismounted surveillance for extended periods of11 time.12 • Maintain 12 separate short-term OPs simultaneously (less than 1213 hours).14 • Conduct stealthy or high-visibility surveillance.15 LIMITATIONS16 The lightly armored vehicles of the reconnaissance troop are severely17 limited in their ability to move through emplaced reconnaissance/-18 counterreconnaissance elements of a mechanized threat. Therefore, the troop19 should be augmented by armor or an antitank defensive system asset to20 penetrate the threat security zone to allow the troop to move into its area of21 operations. Another technique may be for a maneuver team to conduct a probe22 of threat positions and allow the troop to maneuver through the gap created.23 Still another technique is to have TUAVs locate openings through threat24 positions and assist the troop in infiltrating. Infiltration is the preferred method25 because it does not draw the threat’s attention to scouts entering its area.26 27 28 29 SECTION VII. SURVEILLANCE PLANNING, METHODS,30 AND CONSIDERATIONS31 32 The purpose of this section is to outline the planning, methods, and tactical33 employment for executing surveillance operations.34 35 PLANNING36 37 Considerations38 When planning a surveillance operation, the troop commander must39 consider the following:40
  • 181. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-73 • The higher commander’s intent and guidance.1 • Critical tasks to be accomplished IAW the reconnaissance and2 surveillance plans.3 • Task organization and attachments.4 • Troop personnel and equipment strengths and weaknesses.5 • Operational tempo (how long surveillance must be maintained).6 Based on the above considerations, the troop commander determines:7 • Primary and alternate routes to NAIs.8 • Infiltration/LD locations.9 • The surveillance focus per OP.10 • Specified and implied tasks.11 • Actions on contact/discovery.12 • Communications plan (architecture and required support).13 Augmentation14 The troop may receive attachments. These assets may be under troop15 control or they may be attached to a platoon for their use in the execution of16 the platoon’s specified surveillance tasks. Attachments may include TUAV17 sections or ground sensor sections. See an explanation of these attachments in18 Section II.19 SURVEILLANCE METHODS20 There are two methods for conducting surveillance at troop level—21 dismounted and mounted. The troop commander may use either method or a22 combination of both to accomplish the surveillance based on the factors of23 METT-TC and the higher commander’s intent and guidance.24 25 Dismounted Surveillance26 When directed, scouts conduct dismounted surveillance when—27 • Stealth is required.28 • Detailed information is required.29 • Surveillance target is a stationary threat, fixed site, or terrain feature.30 • Vehicles cannot move through an area because of terrain or threat.31 • Security is the primary concern.32 33 Dismounted surveillance permits a troop to collect detailed information34 about a fixed site or threat from a close proximity. However, dismounted35 reconnaissance is the most time-consuming in terms of OP preparation. The36
  • 182. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 3-74 troop is also limited in the number of dismounted scouts it can employ at any1 time. A minimum of nine soldiers is required to operate a long-duration OP.2 Mounted Surveillance3 When directed, scouts conduct mounted surveillance when—4 • Surveillance target allows vehicles to approach (terrain feature or road5 intersection in stability or support operations).6 • Threat contact is not likely.7 • Stealth and security are not primary concerns.8 Mounted surveillance allows the troop to use the high magnification9 vehicle sights to observe NAIs from a greater distance. Though a surveillance10 operation may be primarily mounted, dismounted activities will probably be11 required during the operation for security reasons.12 NOTE: Mounted and dismounted surveillance may be used simultaneously.13 This technique provides flexibility and capitalizes on the strengths of14 both methods.15 CONSIDERATIONS16 Once inside threat territory, the troop must be constantly alert to avoid17 detection while en route to the area of operation. If the scouts become aware of18 threat presence, they try to move away undetected. The scouts fight only when19 there is no alternative, and then they break contact as quickly as possible.20 Following threat contact, the senior scout, with guidance, decides whether to21 abort or continue the mission. Following threat contact, the troop may have to22 establish a temporary position for resupply or evacuation of wounded.23
  • 183. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-1 CHAPTER 41 SECURITY2 3 Security operations are designed to obtain information about the threat and to4 provide reaction time, maneuver space, and protection to the main body. These5 operations are characterized by continuous reconnaissance and surveillance to6 reduce terrain and threat unknowns and to gain and maintain contact with the threat7 (IAW commander’s intent). As a result, the protected force receives early,8 continuous information so it can decide whether to engage or avoid the threat.9 10 Security is an essential part of all offensive and defensive operations.11 Traditionally the reconnaissance troop provides security for the commander along12 an exposed front, flank, or rear of the main body where a threat may exist. In13 noncontiguous operations, the troop may provide security throughout the depth of14 an area with 360-degree orientation. Even during security operations that involve15 fighting the threat, the scouts’ primary task remains gathering information.16 17 18 19 CONTENTS20 Page21 SECTION I. Fundamentals and Capabilities...............................4-222 SECTION II. Screen .....................................................................4-823 SECTION III. Area and High Value Asset Security ........................4-3524 SECTION IV. Convoy Security.......................................................4-4025 26 27 28 The reconnaissance troop may perform limited security operations in smaller-29 scale contingencies (SSC). Under specific circumstances (permissive METT-TC),30 the troop may conduct limited/short-duration security operations in a major theater31 of war (MTW). Dependent upon the threat, the troop may require augmentation,32 such as a medium assault gun, main battle tank, attack aviation, and other joint33 platforms.34 35 36
  • 184. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-2 SECTION I. FUNDAMENTALS AND CAPABILITIES1 Security missions include screen, guard, area security, convoy security, and2 route security. The reconnaissance troop performs screen, area/high-value asset3 (HVA) security, and convoy security missions independently or as part of its parent4 unit.5 6 With augmentation, reconnaissance troops also participate in guard and route7 security missions as part of a larger force. Troops will normally perform8 reconnaissance, screen, defend, delay, attack, or a combination of these missions in9 support of the RSTA squadron and/or brigade (see the applicable section of10 Chapters 3, 5, and 6 for specifics).11 FUNDAMENTALS12 Five fundamentals are common to all security operations:13 • Orient on the main body.14 • Perform continuous reconnaissance.15 • Provide early and accurate warning.16 • Provide reaction time and maneuver space.17 • Maintain threat contact.18 Orient on the Main Body19 The reconnaissance troop considers terrain, threat, and friendly forces as it20 develops its area of responsibility. During security operations, the brigade and/or21 RSTA squadron may operate within a large area of operations. It will focus its22 operation on information requirements stated by the brigade commander to provide23 the brigade with continuous situational understanding. As a security force, the troop24 will be operating at a specified distance from a main body, between it and amongst25 a known or suspected threat force. If the main body (protected force) moves, the26 troop also moves or shifts its orientation. The troop commander must know how the27 main body commander intends to maneuver his forces and where he wants the28 troop in relation to his movement. The troop commander maneuvers his troop to29 positions that provide the observation necessary for security.30 Perform Continuous Reconnaissance31 The troop’s local security and the security of the main body (protected force)32 come in large measure from knowing everything about the terrain and the threat33 within the troop’s AO. Situational awareness/understanding through reconnaissance34 provides a level of security. Hence, the reconnaissance troop, synchronized with a35 host of ISR assets, will conduct continuous reconnaissance, surveillance, and36 patrolling to reduce or isolate unknowns and provide timely and accurate37 information. Surveillance and patrolling tasks required in security operations use the38
  • 185. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-3 same techniques as in reconnaissance operations. If the security mission involves1 movement, reconnaissance is necessary. With air and ground assets working in2 tandem within the RSTA squadron, the troop can perform continued3 reconnaissance throughout the brigade’s area of operation. Reconnaissance and4 continuous patrolling go hand in hand with security operations. Determine what the5 terrain will allow the troop and the threat to do.6 Provide Early and Accurate Warning7 Early and accurate warning of threat approach is the cornerstone of security8 operations. The main body commander needs as much time as possible to shift and9 concentrate his forces to meet and defeat an unexpected threat attack. Put10 observers in positions that afford long-range observation of expected threat avenues11 of approach. Use TUAVs and ground surveillance radar (GSR), if available, to12 enhance their ability to see. Place remote sensors in the ground to monitor avenues13 of approach that cannot be easily observed. When possible, send dismounted or14 mounted patrols forward of OPs to extend their ability to see, providing additional15 reaction time for the main body commander. TUAVs, working in tandem with16 ground sensor units and the reconnaissance troop, when possible, acquire17 information and early warning on threat forces without initial endangerment of18 ground forces.19 Provide Reaction Time and Maneuver Space20 All security operations are designed to provide reaction time and maneuver21 space for the main body so it can deal effectively with an unexpected threat attack.22 The reconnaissance troop can operate effectively within the brigade’s battlespace.23 ISR assets, working with the reconnaissance troop, locate the threat at a distance24 that provides the commander the reaction time and maneuver space needed for the25 brigade’s combat forces to attack the threat early with precision fires from artillery26 and aviation while maneuvering to decisively apply combat power. With increased27 long-range observation capabilities, reconnaissance elements can remain in covered28 and concealed positions with less chance of discovery by the threat. With the29 troop’s organic mortar support, the scouts can use indirect fires to suppress and30 assist their survivability and disengagement if caught in close combat with the threat.31 Digital technologies and communications enhance timely and accurate reporting of32 natural and man-made obstacles and threat activity in near-real time, and provide33 the situational awareness needed to facilitate the brigade’s movement.34 Maintain Threat Contact35 The troop has tremendous capabilities to continually maintain contact with threat36 forces or reconnaissance objectives through its myriad of surveillance ISR assets. It37 is essential for the survivability of other friendly forces that information is gathered38 on the threat. This requires continuous observation, the ability to use indirect fires,39 and not becoming decisively engaged. ISR assets provide overlapping coverage to40
  • 186. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-4 ensure contact is maintained, unless otherwise directed. Ground sensors may1 identify threat movement and TUAVs and/or scouts can maintain contact. The2 reconnaissance troop may use a security drill to maintain threat contact throughout3 the depth of its assigned sector, or it may use other attached assets (i.e., TUAV or4 aerial scouts) to pass the contact back to the brigade or squadron.5 CAPABILITIES6 Capabilities of the RSTA recce troop include—7 • Screen up to a nine-kilometer-wide sector.8 • Maintain continuous surveillance of up to six avenues of approach (through9 six OPs).10 • Can establish up to 12 short-duration and six long-duration OPs.11 12 Capabilities of the BRT include—13 • Screen up to a ten-kilometer-wide sector.14 • Maintain continuous surveillance of up to six avenues of approach (through15 six OPs/NAIs [named areas of interest]).16 • Can establish up to 12 short-duration OPs (less than 12 hours in duration).17 NOTE: The maximum six long-duration OPs the troop can occupy is a function of18 personnel required to perform the following tasks:19 • Man the actual OP.20 • Maintain radio communications.21 • Provide local security.22 • Conduct dismounted patrols, as required.23 • Conduct resupply.24 • Perform maintenance.25 • Sleep/rest.26 27 COUNTERRECONNAISSANCE28 29 Counterreconnaissance is an inherent task in all security operations.30 Counterreconnaissance is not a mission. It is the sum of actions taken at all echelons31 to counter threat reconnaissance and surveillance (R&S) efforts through the depth32 of the AO. Counterreconnaissance denies the threat information about friendly units.33 It is both active and passive and includes combat action to destroy or repel threat34
  • 187. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-5 reconnaissance elements. If the reconnaissance troop conducts1 counterreconnaissance as part of its security mission, it may require augmentation.2 Planning3 The commander’s guidance must specifically define the role of the troop in4 counterreconnaissance operations (troop engagement/destruction criteria). Once he5 has a thorough understanding of his commander’s intent, the troop commander must6 consider four factors when planning to acquire threat reconnaissance elements:7 • Threat reconnaissance avenues of approach.8 • When and under what conditions threat reconnaissance forces are likely to9 be encountered.10 • The likely composition of the threat reconnaissance in terms of size,11 organization, and equipment.12 • The identity and location of friendly reconnaissance-killing forces.13 14 Threat reconnaissance forces are not likely to use primary reconnaissance15 avenues of approach to execute their mission. To gain threat contact, the scouts16 must be oriented on trails, rough terrain, and dead space that allow mounted17 movement, but only for small teams of vehicles. They must also realize that threat18 reconnaissance is most likely to move during darkness and periods of limited19 visibility. The troop can maximize its ability to acquire the threat by incorporating20 additional ISR assets in its screen mission. Focus these assets to acquire the threat21 deep and on restrictive terrain that the ground scout does not have access.22 23 The IPB should focus on identifying the type, quantity, and avenues of approach24 for threat security forces. A thorough understanding of the composition of threat25 reconnaissance elements will allow the scout to more accurately determine what26 their likely reconnaissance avenues of approach are and how best to acquire them.27 This will subsequently drive the task organization and positioning of forces. The28 troop commander and XO should work closely with the staff, particularly the S2 on29 terrain and avenue of approach analysis.30 31 The counterreconnaissance force should be composed of a surveillance or32 “looker” force, and a killer force. The troop will normally be the surveillance force,33 augmented with mechanized/armor platoons or aviation (Kiowas, Apaches,34 Comanches) acting as a killing force.35 36 Since counterreconnaissance operations normally require a relatively unique37 task organization, communications architecture, reporting flow and C238 responsibilities must be clearly defined and addressed in detail in the39 counterreconnaissance operations order. Particular attention is required in setting40 up digital connectivity, and communications with supporting assets. The troop41
  • 188. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-6 commander should consider having killer elements operate on the same FM nets or1 OPCON to the scout platoons they are operating behind. Message addressing2 groups should be tailored prior to the start of an operation to ensure proper3 message routing.4 5 Force positioning should start with the IPB identification of the type of threat6 reconnaissance force and the approaches that allow individual vehicles to infiltrate7 into sector to templated observation posts linked to the S2 threat analysis/template.8 Scout and STRIKER teams should be positioned in depth, essentially the same as in9 a screening mission, focused on those identified threat avenues of approach. Fields10 of observation should be overlapping to ensure threat reconnaissance elements are11 identified and continuously tracked until destroyed. Attention must be given to air12 infiltration routes and positions where dismounted reconnaissance elements can be13 air inserted. The killer force should be positioned for maximum response time and14 mobility to allow it to be vectored to positions where it can intercept and destroy15 the threat reconnaissance.16 17 The troop commander, S2, S3, and FSO should plan fire support operations18 with great detail. They must ensure the fire support plan is linked to the appropriate19 NAIs/TAIs. The troop commander assigns assets to observe each NAI/TAI and20 ensures redundancy is created for each assigned area. Observation plans linked to21 triggers are critical. They must cover both mounted and dismounted avenues of22 approach. Artillery is usually not used extensively during counterreconnaissance23 operations due to the difficulty of targeting individual vehicles. This is rectified by the24 planning and use of precision munitions. The FBCB2 friendly situational awareness25 display will aid in avoiding fratricide, but it cannot be the sole method for clearing26 fires. Elements of the counterreconnaissance force that do not have operational27 FBCB2, such as dismounts, must be consistently tracked at the TOC and the BRT28 command post (CP) to avoid fratricide.29 30 The brigade S2 should coordinate with the J2/G2 for identification and31 disruption of threat reconnaissance C2 nets.32 33 The counterreconnaissance force should be logistically prepared to operate for34 as long as possible (24-72 hours) without resupply, though elements of the killer35 force will require refueling, probably on a daily basis. Resupply should be planned36 to prevent the threat from learning of security force locations, and the forward37 movement of resupply vehicles should be restricted. Much of the troop may be38 able to remain in place for extended periods, and elements of the killer force rotated39 to resupply points to the rear of the counterreconnaissance zone.40 41 Casualty evacuation planning should address the location of all aid stations and42 methods for ground and air evacuation. Since the force is frequently deployed43
  • 189. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-7 across the brigade combat team (BCT) sector, the IP addresses of all aid stations in1 the BCT should be available to all personnel so they can find and navigate to the2 nearest aid station using FBCB2 (in order or SOP item).3 4 Rehearsals will increase the probability of a successful counterreconnaissance5 operation, just as they do with any other complex mission. If practical, units should6 rehearse acquiring threat reconnaissance patrols and guiding killing force elements7 into positions to engage them. To vector killers using FBCB2 requires that8 observation of the threat be maintained and the icon location frequently updated by9 the observer or the troop CP. This process ensures positive tracking of the threat10 and reduces the communication required between the surveillance elements and the11 killers.12 Execution13 The counterreconnaissance force should be positioned as soon as the BCT14 moves into sector, or begins transitioning to a new mission. Often this will require15 the troop to move elements into position with minimal planning, and refine the16 positioning and planning details during the early execution of the operation.17 18 The troop commander should position himself where he can best control the19 operation. This may be from his CP, where he can maintain communications with his20 forward elements and with the controlling brigade CP. This also allows him to more21 easily monitor FBCB2 displays at night to track forces and to keep digital22 communications flowing to brigade. The commander may position himself with the23 killer force, especially if it is attached and unfamiliar with counterreconnaissance24 missions.25 26 At night, light discipline will usually not allow counterreconnaissance elements to27 send digital messages. Light discipline measures should be taken to allow vehicle28 commanders to periodically check their situational awareness display without giving29 away their position. FM will be the normal method of communication between all30 elements for reporting and coordinating. The troop CP must translate FM threat31 spot reports into digital spot reports, and keep the red situational awareness picture32 current based on FM reporting.33 34 As the operation transitions to a main battle area fight, some of the surveillance35 force may remain in forward positions to monitor NAIs/TAIs and to execute tasks36 in support of the brigade’s fire support plan. The remainder of the37 counterreconnaissance force (killers) will normally withdraw into the main battle38 area to perform a subsequent mission, or move to another part of the BCT sector to39 continue counterreconnaissance/security operations.40 41
  • 190. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-8 Withdrawing to the main battle area should be planned and executed as a1 rearward passage of lines under threat pressure. Too often, units underestimate the2 speed of a threat attack and withdraw too late. Critical execution aspects include3 ensuring all elements have updated digital overlays of obstacles and friendly forces;4 transmitting the troop’s situational awareness data to the forces they are passing5 through; coordinating recognition signals, passage points, and return routes and6 depicting them in a digital operations overlay; planning indirect fires to cover the7 withdrawal. (NOTE: Withdrawing vehicles whose FBCB2 is inoperative should8 notify the controlling headquarters that they cannot send situational awareness data9 and will not appear on FBCB2. Those vehicles should try to link up and move with10 a vehicle that is transmitting situational awareness data to reduce the possibility of11 fratricide.)12 SECTION II. SCREEN13 Screen is the most common security mission reconnaissance troops conduct.14 Troops conduct screen missions for their parent units or other forces to—15 • Provide early warning of threat approach.16 • Provide real-time information, reaction time, and maneuver space to the17 protected force.18 • Destroy or repel threat reconnaissance elements (perform19 counterreconnaissance) within their capability (may require augmentation).20 • Impede and harass the threat.21 22 The screen mission provides the least amount of protection of any security23 mission. It is appropriate when operations have created extended flanks, when24 gaps between forces exist and cannot be secured in force, or when required to25 provide early warning over gaps that are not considered critical enough to require26 security in greater strength. The troop normally conducts a screen when the brigade27 commander wants to ensure time to respond to an unexpected threat attack and28 cannot afford to commit other forces to the task.29 30 While zone reconnaissance missions are offensive in nature, the screen mission31 is defensive in nature. This should not be confused with a security mission having a32 stationary orientation. As such, reconnaissance troops screen the front, flanks, and33 rear of a stationary force, but only to the flanks or rear of a moving force. Screening34 operations are not performed forward of a moving force. In noncontiguous brigade35 operations, the troop and squadron may be screening in depth within the brigade’s36 battle space.37 38
  • 191. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-9 Screening is largely accomplished by establishing a series of OPs and1 conducting patrols to ensure adequate surveillance of the assigned sector. Screens2 are active operations. Stationary OPs are only one part of the mission. Employing3 patrols (mounted and dismounted), aerial reconnaissance (TUAV), ground-based4 sensors (GSR, IREMBASS), intelligence from space-based sensor systems, and5 OPs relocated on an extended screen ensure that continuous overlapping6 surveillance occurs. Inactivity in an immobile screen promotes complacency.7 Critical Tasks8 To achieve the intent of a screen mission, the troop must accomplish the9 following critical tasks:10 • Maintain continuous surveillance of all assigned NAIs or avenues of11 approach in sector (IAW the commander’s critical information requirements12 [CCIR] and the R&S plan) with organic assets and, when augmented, with13 TUAVs and ground sensors. METT-TC and IPB will establish the time14 requirements for how and when NAIs and avenues of approach are15 observed.16 • Destroy or repel all threat reconnaissance elements within capabilities and17 based on the commander’s guidance (engagement/destruction criteria).18 Identify threat reconnaissance units and, in coordination with other combat19 elements, destroy them with reach-back precision munitions or attached20 units while not compromising scouts or the brigade.21 • Locate the lead elements that indicate the threat’s main attack orientation22 and direction prescribed in the threat’s order of battle based off the S2’s23 IPB. Provide early warning of threat approach by acquiring information24 deep, in coordination with aerial reconnaissance and ground surveillance25 sensors to be handed over to reconnaissance OPs when necessary.26 • Maintain contact with the threat’s lead element and be prepared to displace27 and report its activities (security drill).28 29
  • 192. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-10 PLANNING CONSIDERATIONS/GUIDANCE TO SUBORDINATES1 2 Command Guidance3 Critical to the troop4 commander’s ability to execute his5 mission is to clearly understand the6 focus, tempo, and engagement7 criteria of the mission. From the8 established focus, the commander is9 able to set the appropriate tempo.10 The tempo will link the required11 tasks to the mission time constraints.12 Engagement criteria are linked to13 focus and tempo by clarifying how14 the unit will deal with contact. Given15 the focus and tempo, the16 engagement criteria provide the17 instructions on what the unit is18 expected to fight and what it is19 expected to hand over to a20 supporting or follow-on unit.21 22 The threat situation is often23 vague when planning a screen. The24 troop should develop plans that are25 flexible enough to react to any threat26 course of action, particularly the worst case. Planning should include a detailed27 description of how contact with the threat reconnaissance will be gained, then how28 and where it will be destroyed. Planning should also cover the method of29 displacement (security drill) once the main body of the threat force has been30 identified and how that force will be handed over to the main body. Because of the31 need for flexibility, screen operations will often begin to mirror the characteristics of32 defense or delay missions. To cover the displacement of scouts, some elements of33 the troop may be required to execute missions such as delay or defend.34 35 Screen operations at troop level usually occur in four phases:36 • Movement to and occupation of the screen.37 • Surveillance and counterreconnaissance.38 • Gaining and maintaining contact with the threat main body during39 displacement of a screen (security drill).40 • Rearward passage of lines.41 COMMANDER’S RECON (SECURITY) GUIDANCE Security Missions • Destruction Criteria (if any): − What must the troop/platoons destroy in counterreconnaissance fight. • Displacement Criteria: − What actions/criteria cause the collapse of the screen. − What actions cause displacement in contact vs. out of contact. Continued Reconnaissance • Focus of the reconnaissance: − Terrain, threat, or civilian. − What reconnaissance critical tasks are conducted or deleted. • Tempo of the reconnaissance: − Is it stealthy or forceful. − Is it deliberate or rapid. − Is it aggressive or discreet. • Engagement Criteria (if any): − What is a troop fight. − What is a platoon fight. − What weapon system is used to engage what type targets.
  • 193. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-11 Command guidance should address each phase of the operation and cover at1 least the following:2 • Location/orientation/width of the screen.3 • Depth of troop sector.4 • Duration of the screen.5 • Method of movement to and occupation of the screen.6 • Location and disposition of the friendly force being screened.7 • Engagement/destruction criteria.8 • Displacement/disengagement criteria.9 • Follow-on missions.10 • Positioning and orientation guidance for GSRs, TUAVs, or other sensors (if11 attached).12 • Positioning and orientation guidance for the FIST and /or STRIKERs.13 Considerations14 15 In conjunction with the commander’s guidance, the following paragraphs16 describe the issues that must be considered when developing and completing the17 plan and executing the screen mission.18 19 Time Screen Must Be Established. The time the screen must be set and20 established will influence the troop’s method of deploying to and occupying the21 screen.22 23 Movement to Screen. If the screen mission is the result of a previous tactical24 maneuver such as zone reconnaissance, the troop will essentially be postured to25 begin screening from present positions. This situation occurs frequently, and may be26 the result of a FRAGO to halt at a specified phase line.27 If the troop is not currently set on the screen, obviously deployment to the28 screen must occur before actually beginning the screen mission. Time determines the29 method of occupying the screen. Thorough analysis of METT-TC will determine30 which deployment technique or combination of techniques best meets mission31 requirements.32 33 Trace and Orientation of Screen. The initial screen is depicted as a phase34 line and often represents the forward line of own troops (FLOT). As such, the35 screen may be a restrictive control measure for movement (limit of advance36 [LOA]); coordination/permission would be necessary to move beyond the line to37 establish OPs or to perform reconnaissance. When occupied, OPs are established38 on or behind the phase line. OPs are given specific orientation and observation39 guidance.40
  • 194. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-12 1 Initial OP Locations. The squadron/brigade or troop commander may2 determine tentative initial OP locations to ensure effective surveillance of the sector3 and designated NAIs. At a minimum, the troop commander designates a primary4 orientation of observation for the scouts during the conduct of the screen. Scouts,5 once established on the screen, will report their location to the troop CP and verify6 they are in compliance with the commander’s orientation and surveillance guidance.7 The scouts who occupy each OP always retain the responsibility to modify the8 location to achieve the commander’s intent and guidance for surveillance. The OPs9 are positioned along or behind the screen.10 11 OPs may be either mounted or dismounted. Mounted OPs maximize use of12 vehicular optics, weapon systems, and speed of displacement, but are more readily13 detected by the threat. Dismounted OPs provide maximum stealth at the expense of14 speed of displacement and vehicle-mounted optics and weapons. Dismounted and15 mounted OPs may be used together to provide depth and mutual security.16 17 OPs are generally categorized as either short-duration (less than 12 hours) or18 long-duration (more than 12 hours) based on their expected duration of19 employment. A reconnaissance troop can occupy up to 12 short-duration OPs20 (one per squad). For extended periods of time, the troop can occupy six long-21 duration OPs (one per section).22 23 Width and Depth of the Screened Sector. The troop sector is defined by24 lateral boundaries extending out to a limit of advance (the initial screen), forward of25 a rear boundary. The troop sector is established by its higher headquarters. The26 troop boundaries may be a squadron/brigade phase line and may serve as a27 reconnaissance handover (RHO) line to control passing of responsibility for the28 threat to another force. The troop’s ability to gain depth decreases as screened29 frontage increases.30 31 Extended Screens. Reconnaissance troops normally screen a sector up to32 nine kilometers wide (10 kilometers for BRT). However, METT-TC may dictate an33 extended screen across frontages in excess of the norm. A troop’s ability to34 accomplish its critical tasks, or its ability to screen in depth, can diminish rapidly as35 frontages increase. Examples of extended screens are as follows:36 • Troop screens 20 kilometers of southern bank of unfordable river crossed37 by four bridges in sector.38 • Troop screens 25 kilometers of desert terrain from dominant ridge.39 40 Depth. Depth is also important in a screen. The term screen is descriptive only41 of the forward trace along which security is provided. Depth allows a threat contact42
  • 195. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-13 to be passed from one element to another without requiring displacement. Depth is1 advantageous in the following situations:2 • Destroying or repelling a threat reconnaissance patrol without compromising3 critical OPs.4 • Preventing a threat from penetrating the screen too easily.5 • Preventing gaps from occurring when OPs displace or are lost.6 • Maintaining contact with moving threat without compromising OPs.7 • Preventing threat templating of the screen.8 Depth is achieved primarily by positioning OPs, particularly where there are9 limited avenues of approach. Antitank sections, the mortar section, and attached10 elements positioned behind the screen establish local security and provide11 surveillance. The degree to which depth can be attained is a function of many12 factors, which include the commander’s intent and concept as expressed in—13 • Graphical trace of the screen (LOA).14 • Engagement criteria.15 • Destruction criteria.16 • Displacement/disengagement criteria.17 • Width of the sector.18 • Depth of the troop sector.19 • Terrain and avenues of approach it will support.20 • Attachments and detachments.21 22 Locations of Subsequent Screens. The troop commander uses additional23 phase lines to control the operation. These phase lines may serve as subsequent24 screens. Displacement to subsequent screens is event-driven. The troop25 commander may also use the terrain index reference system (TIRS) or checkpoints26 to control the troop’s movement to a subsequent screen.27 28 Reconnaissance Platoon Sectors. Assign clear responsibility of identified29 avenues of approach and designated NAIs. The nature of a screen normally30 requires platoons to deploy abreast.31 32 AT/MGS/Tank Sections/Platoons. Position antitank assets (scouts with33 Javelins) in likely ambush sites along threat armor avenues of approach. They are34 the primary armor direct-fire killing assets. Again, the troop commander establishes35 tentative battle positions or engagement areas that support the troop’s36 counterreconnaissance fight. Graphic control measures depict the emplacement of37 the supporting battle positions and report exact positions. Time permitting,38 troop/platoons rehearse these types of engagements. OP locations must support39 these engagements. OPs identify the threat and hand them over to the element in the40 ambush site.41
  • 196. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-14 Force to be Screened. The troop must orient on the force it is securing. If the1 main body is moving, the troop may move to maintain the screen’s position relative2 to the main body. The troop commander must understand the protected force’s3 scheme of maneuver in order to maintain the proper security posture and anticipate4 the troop’s reaction to friendly and threat actions.5 Attachments. GSR and engineers are common attachments at troop level.6 • GSR/Improved Remotely Monitored Battlefield Sensor System7 (IREMBASS). Sensors are used during screen operations to augment8 reconnaissance OPs and to add depth to the screen. They should be9 attached to platoons, and the commander should provide the10 reconnaissance platoon leader with positioning and orientation guidance.11 The commander ensures that the GSR/IREMBASS elements are integrated12 into the troop’s security plan, that they are integrated into the displacement13 plan (security drill), and that they are integrated into the CSS plan.14 • Engineers. If engineers are attached to the troop, the troop commander15 should assign them with priority of mission and priority of effort in support16 of commander’s guidance. During screen operations, engineers will normally17 dig survivability positions for scouts. Also engineers emplace obstacles in18 support of the counterreconnaissance battle or assist the troop with19 displacement of the screen once contact has been established with the threat20 body.21 • TUAVs. If attached, TUAVs can provide depth to the troop screen. They22 can be positioned forward of the troop scouts and maintain contact with23 elements attempting to penetrate the screen. If the troop is extended over a24 large distance, TUAVs can assist in identifying gaps in the reconnaissance25 platoon’s surveillance. TUAVs also may assist the troop in displacing.26 While the TUAV maintains contact with the approaching threat main27 elements, the reconnaissance troop may execute its security drill, reducing28 the risk of scouts becoming decisively engaged as they attempt to maintain29 contact as they displace.30 31 Indirect Fire Planning. Fire planning integrates artillery and mortar fires.32 Position the troop mortars to fire up to two-thirds of their maximum range, but no33 less than one-third of the range forward of the FLOT. A wide sector may require34 the troop commander to position them to provide effective coverage of the most35 likely avenue of approach determined by IPB. The troop FSO plans artillery fires to36 adequately cover any gaps in mortar coverage. Position the FIST/STRIKERs along37 the avenues of approach that best support the brigade’s essential fire support tasks38 (EFST). Leaders at all levels must ensure that each assigned target has an identified39 trigger and an assigned primary and alternate shooter. (Refer to Chapter 6 for a40 detailed discussion of fire support and target acquisition.)41
  • 197. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-15 Direct Fire Planning. Based on his analysis of the terrain and the threat, the1 troop commander determines where to engage the threat (engagement areas). He2 also determines the location of BPs that provide observation, fields of fire, and3 cover and concealment that support each engagement area. Refer to Chapter 5,4 Section I, for more information on direct fire planning.5 Positioning of C2, CS, and CSS Assets. The troop commander positions6 himself to observe the most dangerous threat avenue of approach. The troop CP7 positions itself in depth to provide continuous control and reporting during initial8 movements. After the screen has been reestablished in depth following displacement9 from the initial screen, the CP can reposition. The first sergeant and the medics are10 positioned behind masking terrain close enough for rapid response. They are best11 sited along routes providing good mobility laterally and in depth.12 Patrol Requirements. Patrols are required to cover gaps between OPs. The13 troop commander tasks the platoon leaders to perform specific patrols. Platoons14 report any information on executed patrols with a patrol report.15 FBCB2 Filter Settings. Achieving an operational picture begins at the16 platform level as users set up their FBCB2 filters. There are filters that apply to the17 user’s own system and those that apply to how the user sees other friendly18 platforms. There are also red filters that depict how red icons will be viewed. Filters19 allow the user to set the icons, overlays, labels, and geo-referenced graphics that20 are displayed as part of the overall situational awareness (SA) picture. Filter21 settings are driven by METT-TC. The brigade S3 or TACSOP should dictate SA22 filter settings to all units under operational control, attached, or assigned, to achieve23 a common operational picture.24 25 Friendly SA Filter Settings. Friendly SA filter settings allow the user to set26 the elapsed time before blue icons begin to fade on the map screen. Operators set27 the times at which an icon goes stale, gets old, and then is purged from their28 displays. The system measures the purge time values from the last time the FBCB229 received a position report from another platform. The user can choose to view or30 filter friendly platforms according to currency, dimension (air, land or sea platforms),31 unit type, and echelon. These settings depend on the user’s echelon, mission, and32 platform. The TACSOP should dictate the settings.33 34 Red SA Settings. Digital enemy C2 spot and contact/engagement reports are35 usually input at the company and below level (FBCB2). It is critical to pass spot36 reports via FBCB2 as this creates an enemy icon that is transmitted network wide.37 The report from FBCB2 should only describe numbers of personnel and equipment.38 Senders should not annotate whether or not the element is a39 squad/platoon/company, etc. The sender will address the report to the S2 at40 battalion, or if a member of the brigade recon troop or STRIKERs, to the brigade41
  • 198. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-16 S2 (see below). The spot report automatically creates red SA icons on the brigade1 area network. FBCB2 red SA is more timely and focused than ASAS-2 disseminated SA. Therefore it should be displayed exclusively when monitoring the3 close fight. (See Figure 4-1.)4 Figure 4-1. FBCB2 spot report.5 6 Movement to the Screen7 In deploying to the screen, the troop commander must deal with the competing8 requirements to establish the screen quickly to meet mission requirements and to9 provide the necessary level of security for the troop in doing so. The troop moves to10 the screen using one of three basic methods—tactical road march, zone11 reconnaissance, or infiltration, which is discussed in Chapter 3.12 Tactical Road March13 The troop conducts a tactical road march to the release point behind the screen.14 From the release point, platoons deploy to occupy initial positions. This method of15 deploying to the screen is the fastest, but least secure. It is appropriate when threat16 contact is not expected and time is critical. Additional assets, such as the TUAV17 platoon and ground sensor platoon, will assist the movement, providing early18 warning as the troop moves to screen. Refer to Chapter 5 for greater detail on19 tactical road march.20 Zone Reconnaissance21 The troop conducts a zone reconnaissance from the line of departure to the22 initial screen. Given adequate time, this method is preferred because the troop can23 reconnoiter the zone for any threat and platoons can become thoroughly familiar24 with the terrain. For example, the troop can reconnoiter potential subsequent OP25 locations, battle and hide positions, and mortar firing positions as they move to the26
  • 199. FM 3-20.971 (2d Coord Draft) 4-17 screen. A zone reconnaissance is appropriate when time is available and information1 about the threat or terrain is unknown. Again, maximum use of the additional assets2 (TUAVs and ground sensors) during the reconnaissance and screen is a must.3 Refer to Chapter 3 for greater detail on zone reconnaissance.4 Security Drill5 A security drill is a series of rehearsed actions a platoon or troop takes to6 maintain contact with the advancing threat force throughout the depth of its assigned7 sector (IAW commander’s guidance). It is used when collapsing the screen to8 subsequent OP positions or when transitioning from a screen mission to a delay or9 defend mission. These displacement criteria are established in the commander’s10 guidance and OPORD and must be clearly understood at all echelons.11 At platoon level, OPs gain contact with the threat main body, then report and12 prepare to displace to a subsequent position. When the threat force reaches the OP13 break point or trigger point (point where the OP must displace or his14 position/movement will compromise him to the threat), the OP passes off the15 responsibility to track the threat to another OP in depth. The platoon displaces its16 OPs to subsequent positions in depth while maintaining contact with the threat. If17 attached, TUAVs and ground sensors enhance the ability of the troop to maintain18 contact without compromising the ground scouts.19 At troop level, the security drill combines the collapse of the initial screen with20 the actions of the antitank section (Javelin sections within the platoons) or attached21 AT/MGS or tank/mechanized sections/platoons from the brigade. Recce or scout22 platoons may perform plat