Building 2D/3D optimized Land Combat Forces for Decisive Strategic Maneuver in the 21st Century "In war the chief incalculable is the human will, which manifests itself in resistance, which in turn lies in the province of tactics. Strategy has not to overcome resistance, except from nature. Its purpose is to diminish the possibility of resistance, and it seeks to fulfil this purpose by exploiting the elements of movement and surprise." --Sir Basil H. Liddell-Hart Air Land Sea 2002 Lieutenant Michael Sparks IN USAR email@example.com
The Two Basic Battles 1. The Battle Against the Earth: Hart’s “Nature” "We have severly underestimated the Russians, the extent of the country and the treachery of the climate. This is the revenge of reality." - German General Heinz Guderian, letter to his wife 1941 Observation Closed terrain: mobile forces automatically lighter and 3D air transportable linkage; note world is URBANIZING rapidly Open terrain: roads, rural areas where we grow food, prairies require GROUND FORCES TO CONTROL---we must be able to control these areas...requires 2D optimization Future Land Forces must FIRST be “powerful against the earth” in terms of mobility, firepower, survivability, and sustainability--if the earth itself easily smothers their combat power how can they even begin to think of overwhelming the human enemy? Open terrain Closed terrain
2. The Battle Against Man "Natural hazards, however formidable, are inherently less dangerous and less uncertain than fighting hazards. All conditions are more calculable, all obstacles more surmountable than those of human resistance". --Sir Basil H. Liddell-Hart The Two competing 21st Century War Thought-Forms in the West VS. TOFFLERIANS FEHRENBACHIANS
1. Ego-centric Gadgetry trumps of the Tofflerians Hubris that we have latest gadget that trumps all, computer mentalism directing firepower to destroy PLATFORMS since without a platform enemy humans cannot abide in temporal air/sea mediums, man is on a gadget escalator of human progress (arrogance to exalt human intellect and spend money on what makes us feel superior) Favorite example: WWII aircraft carriers with 300 mile range aircraft besting battleships with 25 mile range guns
Naïve Civilian Utopians: reality on a timeline: man on escalator to heaven 3rd Wave: Information 2nd Wave: Mechanical 2002 A.D. “Scientists” New replaces old: 1st Wave: Agrarian 2nd Wave: Mechanical 3rd Wave: Information: FIREPOWER TRUMPS ALL! 1st Wave: Agrarian 4000 B.C. “Cavemen” Ooops! We still live on PHYSICAL planet earth and grow food but timeline hubris says we must discard this reality Throw out the past: not relevant or respected
Physicality vs. Earth (that’s “2nd Wave”) NOT Important! We will mouse-click firepower! Defeat on the Battlefield: no boots-on-the-ground decisive, encircling MANEUVER Wheeled Armored Car Madness: can’t MANEUVER x-country, swim, airdrop or fight; infantry will suffer bloody WWI stalemates in cities Afghanistan: Taliban/al Queda escape by C3D2 SOMALIA Kosovo: Serb Army unscathed FCS LAV3STRYKER
2. Tactical-centric Reality trumps of the Fehrenbachians Must get RESULTS, factors in entire context of reality including gadget vs. gadget, human factors that men can live on ground if platforms are taken from them; thus MANEUVER is central to control ground where men live (humility to focus on what's relevant) since the earth itself is the ultimate "platform" which undergirds enemy existence/resistance Favorite example: 1940s German Army with inferior light tanks encircling BEF in France. Military Combat veteran T.R. Fehrenbach wrote in “This Kind of War”: "Americans in 1950 rediscovered something that since Hiroshima they had forgotten: you may fly over a land forever; you may bomb it, atomize it, pulverize it, and wipe it clean of life--but if you desire to defend it, protect it, and keep it for civilization, you must do this on the ground the way the Roman Legions did, by putting your young men into the mud."
Analysis Air/Sea not natural mediums for man, rely on gadgets to abide there, more susceptible to gadgetry trumps Land is where man abides, doesn't need gadgets to abide there, no gadgetry escalator of human progress, latest gadget doesn't nullify/negate/trump earlier gadgets, ALL weaponry is relevant and can be lethal; level playing field; example: can slit throats of unwary sleeping crewmen in multi-million dollar armored car with computer screen, applying AF/Navy thinking to create a gadget-centric units that employ counter-gadgetry without physicality versus the earth is unsound, enemy can refuse to play "arms race" and accept gadget escalator, all weapons in play at all times YES!
More Problems: Tofflerian Ego-Gadgeteers think their brand of computer mentalism firepower trumps all; think battlefield will become giant video game; Russians call “Surveillance Strike Complex” (SSC) like aircraft carriers vs battleships at sea; not so on land! Land forces must be able to defeat entire spectrum of enemy gadgets which requires REALITY centeredness not expectation that a gadget trump will singularly carry the day. Land forces must be able to MANEUVER across open and closed terrain (Battle against the Earth) and be optimized gadget/weapons wise to prevail while doing so against human (Battle against Man) foes who will have ALL weaponry types at their disposal, from low to high tech. Low-tech advantage will require in open terrain low-tech counters, which is heavier armor protection/firepower. High-tech has not REPLACED low-tech in land warfare, it has SUPPLANTED it
Air/Sea Warfare High Tech - Low Tech = High Tech Gadget-centric Reality Land Warfare High Tech + Low Tech = Complex Tactical-centric Reality Best Case if Gadgeteers have their way (defined in Reality Context)? Ego-Gadgeteers create medium weight tracked vehicle FORCE that is 3D air transportable and terrain agile with C4I SA, BUT IS SUB-OPTIMIZED for combat in open terrain; too light, will be at disadvantage against human forces with same gadgets but with heavier platforms with more weight/capability to work with (2D optimization)! Answer is the have two types of land forces! 2D and 3D Optimized for open and closed terrain combats against human foes!
We will have a good 3D "extraordinary" force but not the complimenting 2D "ordinary" forces to dominate maneuver in open terrains we must have! [Sun Tzu's ”tai" and ”chi" force constructs] “In all fighting, the direct method may be used for joining battle, but indirect methods will be needed in order to secure victory. In battle, there are not more than two methods of attack - the direct and the indirect; yet these two in combination give rise to an endless series of maneuvers. The direct and the indirect lead on to each other in turn. It is like moving in a circle - you never come to an end. Who can exhaust the possibilities of their combination?”-Sun Tzu Analogy: WWI British battlecruisers at Jutland getting sunk by heavier German battleship's gunfire, M4 Medium offensive tanks versus Heavy Tiger/Panther defensive tanks in WWII Worse case if Gadgeteers have their way (defined in Reality Context)? Ego-Gadgeteers create medium weight rubber tired wheeled force that is marginally 3D and NOT terrain agile, but road-bound, is sub-optimized for maneuver in ALL terrains relying completely on its gadget trump of C4I to direct firepower at a stand-off, with survival mode infantry security guards to keep low-tech enemies at bay at high cost in blood (keep RPGs away). Neither 3D or 2D maneuver optimized Analogy: LAV-III/Stykers IBCTs or FCS "Units of Action" without 3D or agile 2D cross-country fire & maneuver capability versus low-tech enemy who fights “belt buckle” close, ambushing these armored cars along roads/trails with low-tech weapons in closed terrain where stand-off SA cannot be employed
ITS 2D/3D MANEUVER AND FIREPOWER: WAR PHILOSOPHIES WE SHOULD BE STUDYING FOR 21st CENTURY VICTORY THRU 2D/3D OPTIMIZATION--IF WE WERE OVER THE FIREPOWER VERSUS MANEUVER CONUNDRUM! SUN TZU War is about whose ideas dominate HART Defeat the mind of the enemy VAN CREVALD 4th Generation War is mind warfare BIBLE Make enemy your friend MAN HAS ALWAYS BEEN TECHNOLOGICALLY ADVANCED, BUT HE’S A KILLER ANGEL; AS TIME GOES ON DANGERS INCREASE
Example of imbalanced fire & maneuver-poor force structure against “Surveillance Strike System”: October 6, 1973. Egyptian ground forces storm across the Suez Canal and surprise/overwhelm the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) “Bar-Lev” forward line of troops (FLOT) 3D Projected FLOT 2D/3D 2D 2D
The Egyptian Army advanced under a complete radar-guided, high-medium-low altitude surface-to-air missile “umbrella”, backed up on the ground by “hunter/killer” infantry teams with Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) and Sagger 1 Anti-tank Guided Missiles (ATGMs) to defeat IDF tank ground maneuver: a Surveillance Strike Complex (SSC) in a Major Theatre of War (MTW)
When IDF tanks rushed headlong into Egyptian Armored formations, they are destroyed by Sagger ATGMs and RPGs: the invasion continued RPGs + ATGMs = Knocked-out IDF tanks
"To defeat Israeli armored counter-attacks in 1973, the Egyptians employed an average of 55 infantry anti-tank weapons every 1,000 meters. Their anti-tank positions were mutually supporting and in depth, using Russian-made RPG-7 armor-defeating rockets, backed up by Sagger anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs), and Soviet tanks and Saggers in a third echelon. By using the maximum stand-off ranges of all anti-tank weapons and neutralizing the Israeli Air Force with an effective air defense umbrella over the main battle area ( MBA), the Egyptians repulsed attack after attack of Israeli armor." -- Major Theodore Sendak, U.S. Army Military Review, September 1979 "The Airborne Anti-Armor Defense"
The situation desperate, the IDF launches fighter-bombers to strafe and bomb the Egyptian Armored Columns now just a few miles away from the capital city of Israel.... But they are shot down in horrendous numbers.... Avi Zeira was one of thousands of Israeli Soldiers who rushed to the front in a frantic call-up of every able-bodied person in the country: "I was so angry that we were surprised," Zeira says. "I was really angry, too, that they had better weapons and we didn't know about it. I watched as they just shot our planes out of the sky, leaving us without cover."
Then a miracle happened...the Egyptians paused.... ...giving the IDF precious time to call up its reserves and re-organize itself to defeat the enemy surveillance strike complex; their new tactics: 1. Artillery suppresses enemy air defense and ATGM locations 2. Tracked M113 Mobile infantry clears RPG/ ATGM locations 3. Tanks suppress ATGM firing signatures, dodge missiles
4. USAF emergency airlift begins from CONUS and USAREUR to replace all lost equipment 5. Ground maneuver regained---with Artillery suppressing and tanks destroying enemy air defense sites so the IDF Air Force can fly Close Air Support missions Egyptian Air Defense Artilery Site IDF Centurion tank killing ADA IDF Air/Ground Team
IDF recon/covering forces discover gap in between Egyptian armies; IDF ground maneuver forces under General Sharon cross Suez Canal and encircle an entire Egyptian Army! 3D IDF Paratroops! Extended FLOT 2D IDF Armor Egyptians sue for peace to prevent annihilation!: Israel saved
Helicopter-borne Paratroops in extended FLOT 3D operations! IDF GENERAL AVRAHAM ADAN (TEL AVIV, 13/5/97.TRANSLATED.) www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/coldwar/interviews/episode-17/adan3.html “I decided that I would put a tank brigade in ambush in the sand dunes; I would camouflage them with nets and they would be there to act against the force coming from the south. And in the morning... no, at night, that night we got Paratroopers, and they went out into battle to broaden the passageway to the bridgehead. They arrived quite late; they came from Sharm-al-Sheikh, from a very far-away front, and they arrived in helicopters, very slowly...and we built up a Paratrooper Battalion, which entered into a very difficult battle. 200 mile 3D Air Assault..at night
THE 2D BREAKOUT Once across, the tankers overcame local resistance and some determined Egyptian commando attacks on their laagers as they reorganized. They then quickly fanned out into the open desert, crossing the bridges over the sweet water canals. Here was good tank country at last, resistance scanty and targets plentiful. Their first task was to destroy the Egyptian missile bases to clear the skies for the IAF. During the day, Adan's and Sharon's tankers destroyed every missile site within a perimeter reaching some 20 miles along the western bank, breaking havoc among administrative troops concentrated in the many army camps in the rear zone of the Egyptian armies now on the east bank in Sinai. As fast as the Egyptians threw in reinforcements, they were destroyed by the roaming Israeli armor. Freed from the threat of the surface-to-air missiles, the IAF blazed away at anything that moved, sowing destruction galore.
WARNING: The 1973 war cost Israel 2,378 men, one third of her air force (102 planes), and more than 800 tanks, a shockingly high figure for a country the size of Delaware, with about the same number of people as Alabama. To comprehend such a loss, a comparatively high casualty count on the U.S. armed forces would have resulted in 140,000 dead. As in previous conflicts, no official record of the Arab losses was ever released, but again we estimate that they were higher: about 19,000 dead, more than 350 fighter planes, 1,300 tanks, and 11 ships. Israel won on the battlefield, but in world opinion it was the first three days that counted, because it showed that superior force structure in a well-organized system coupled with surprise were not Israeli (nor American) monopolies.
Did Israel win? Did the Egyptian SSC work? Egypt knew that she could not defeat Israel militarily, so Egypt set out to lose the war in such a fashion as to inflict maximum casualties on Israel and then win the peace. Egypt did just that. Egypt halted because Egypt did not want to over-run its air defense umbrella. As a result of Egypt's "defeat", the Israeli government fell, Egypt got the entire Sinai peninsula back and Egypt was able to maneuver the U.S. into the Camp David talks whereby the U.S. ended up guaranteeing Egypt's borders with Israel and pledging massive aid to Egypt. Egypt's casualties would have been less if Egypt had stuck to her original plan, but Egypt succumbed to Syria's pleas to launch a limited spoiler attack to take the pressure off in Syria's losing fight with Israel. The spoiler attack was launched outside of their air defense umbrella and was repulsed. The ‘73 war is a perfect example of the dictum that war is "a continuation of politics by other means".
Nevertheless, this doesn't change the fact that it wasn't the Eqyptian intention to have Israel cross the Suez and surround their Army. This gave Israel a fairly strong bargaining position and made it very clear in the mind of Egyptian leaders that the Israelis could be in Cairo in a matter of hours. Although all Egyptians are rightfully proud of the initial attack they don't like to talk about the end result. Let’s not forget that Syria intended to go all the way to Haifa and Tel Aviv to exterminate the nation of Israel if possible--a simultaneous two “MTW” type scenario that we seem today to want to dismiss as an enemy attack option in order to cut defense budgets. The Israelis fought a two front war of extreme violence, beginning with surprise attacks on both fronts and ending with both aggressor countries seeing their capitols in danger. The Egyptian pinning attack didn't succeed as well as hoped and this is what forced the change in plans. The limited Egyptian attack outside of the ADA umbrella didn't cause that umbrella to go away-it remained in place and the Israelis used combined-arms to crack it.A static defense wouldn’t have changed the outcome since Israel was planning to attack to decide the issue (as per their doctrine). “What ifs” are part of war.
IDF Colonel David Eshel writes: "The Israeli command had anticipated the possibility of a well executed crossing in their operational concepts. A plan based on the techniques of Soviet forced river crossing operations was well known to Israeli intelligence; even a film of such a river crossing maneuver was available and shown in training. But in actuality, surprise was complete - tactically as well as technically. The Israelis were neither prepared psychologically nor militarily to accept the fact that the Egyptian Army was capable of effectively mounting such an intricate operation.” The fact that there would not be extensive air support came as a great shock to the Israeli troops who, lacking the vast artillery forces of their opponents, had been trained to take air support for granted... So, although we were not prepared, we attacked with part of our forces on 8th October, just as they arrived, and again that was a mistake because we did not have the power, and again we suffered great losses. Only later did we decide to organize first and to switch to an offensive, when we were prepared to concentrate all our forces.”
Lessons Learned for defending MTW aggression: 1. Side that establishes an effective SSC first, lands the first blows, usually the attacker taking ground 2. He that lands all-encompassing massed/precision strikes and/or shattering maneuver wins the first battle, which may be the war-- 3. There may be NO RECOVERY to the side receiving massed, accurate fires if the enemy doesn’t pause (don’t count on it) and takes ground by maneuver (no territory to trade for time); U.S. doesn’t have ally with hundreds of tanks/planes to resupply it if lost in first hours of battle 4. The side receiving SSC fires must be able to absorb, misdirect and shrug off fires long enough to establish its own SSC and combining of all joint arms to regain the initiative through MANEUVER--or lose the war. 5. The key is to asymmetricallyattack the enemy’s SSC boldly at its most critical points to collapse it with unrelenting ground maneuver to not give the enemy any time to recover, then pursue to victory: armored, 2D/3D mobile forces needed and bold leaders at ALL LEVELS
“There is no one to rescue us if we don’t get this right” --Professor Fred Kagan, U.S. Military Academy on how the U.S. is in the same super-power dilemma as England was in 1939, except without a potential rescuer with huge industrial base and time to re-arm & re-equip her if she fails to prepare for the right pattern of future war Israel's big brother (U.S.) made up all IDF combat equipment losses and then some within a matter of days. We may not have that backup in a conflict of our own. If we are defeated early on it's entirely possible that no close airfields will exist for us to use. The entirely competent Israeli ground forces didn't need any large train up. They were ready-to-go as soon as they unloaded the equipment off the planes. We have a terrible time getting ready for gunnery and NTC deployments. Finally, our complicated electronic equipment may not be easily adapted to an existing situation. If the training and infrastructure don't already exist on the ground, introducing it might make things worse. ITS TIME FOR THE U.S. ARMY TO RE-INVIGORATE WITH 2D/3D CAPABLE FORCES NOW USING EXISTING EQUIPMENT!
How Air-Mech-Strike 2D/3D maneuver warfare defeats Surveillance-Strike Complexes 1. AMS Forces can self-deploy to any location in the world to establish a Forward Line Of Troops despite air/sea anti-access strategems and even in the presence of SSC fires; organic ground armored mobility expands options to include high-altitude delivery offset from enemy SSC, ADA effects and forces in position = “powerful against the earth” Two-Tiered airlift system CONUS ---> ISB Airlanding pre-loaded 747 cargo aircraft out of enemy SSC fire range bulk deliver AMS combat forces QUICKLY under 96 hours before battle/war is lost; cargo 747s available NOW in large numbers at low-cost CONUS/ISB ---> Drop Zone Airdrop USAF t-tail aircraft deliver Forced-Entry mobile Assault Echelon (AE) forces under armor protection to overcome enemy SSC fires to establish expanding FLOT; aircraft fly to ISB to shuttle-airland remainder of AMS Forces (FOE) into the now secure Assault Landing Zone (AZ)
AMS: strategically and tactically agile 2D/3D ground forces that offer NO easy asymmetric weakness for an enemy to exploit = “Powerful against man” Space/Air Cover by USAF/USN 2D/3D BCTs CONUS Assault Echelon (AE) Coast Guard/USN Combat UAVs NMD Follow-On-Echelon (FOE) Border Patrol NG Helo SEL 3D APAF Cargo 747s, USAF aircraft, Army helos (in C-5s or self-deploy) CH-47F airdrop C-130X AGS TSB AZ OBJ shuttle airland TBAMs = Theater Ballistic Artillery & Missiles TMAMs = Tactical Mortars, Artillery & Missiles Twin 120 mortars 2D Light Mech Humraam Crusader Patriot/THAAD HIMARS/ATACMs Deep rear Rear Close/Far Deep 8,000 km back to CONUS 250km from enemy TBAMs 50km from TMAMs 300km in enemy rear All Echelons protected from enemy missile attack
2. AMS 2D optimized forces extend and/or project from the FLOT to disrupt/suppress/destroy enemy SSC air defenses to enable 3D decisive maneuver (encirclements, turning movements) or vise-a-versa Extended FLOT tactics 3D 3D 2D FLOT Enables 3D Force to advance 2D
Projected FLOT tactics 3D Enables 2D Force to advance Projected FLOT Base of Fire/Maneuver (Mini-SSC) 2D Main FLOT
UAVs/UCAVs Robust 2D/3D BCTs win in ANY situation C4I verifies data, CAS Road Ambushes, Mines, RPGs, missiles, obstacles, predictable = DEATH City Kills armor in meeting engagements Tracked BCT x-country mobile avoids road threats Quality infantry defeats enemy infantry RSTA verifies targets hit not decoys Wins far 5-50km fight 2D Force Scout dogs Wins close 1-5km fight Swims across rivers/lakes 3D Force blocks, encirclesisolates severs enemy Mobile Crusader, HIMARS, EFOGM, Twin 120mm mortar fire support KILLS verified targets
Missions of the Urban Combat Team • Rapidly Air Deploy Under a Division or Corps HQ as Part of a Joint Force as the spearhead for MOUT operations • Prevent, Contain or Stabilize Crises Through Presence and precise Military Operations in Urban Terrain • Determine Favorable Outcome of urban Small Scale Contingencies (SSCs) • Act as the urban Combat Force Guarantor in Security and Support Operations (SASO) as Part of a U.S. or Multinational Force • Participate, with Augmentation, in Major Theater Wars (MTWs) insuring urban areas do not hinder decisive maneuver
Can we continue to assault urban structures using predictable top-down or bottom-up tactics? Helicopter rooftop assaults exposes them to enemy fires Slow Ladder assaults date back to ancient times! Foot Infantry exposed to enemy fires!!!!! “Stacking” teams at ground-level
Solution to 21st Century Urban combat: Modern Siege Engines; tracked tanks with combat engineering means--original purpose of tanks in the first place in WWI! General Percy Hobart’s “Funnies” with PHYSICAL MECHANICAL ADVANTAGE to directly cope not impotent, rubber-tired armored cars mouse-clicking pleas for firepower help!
MOUT VERTICAL ASSAULT VEHICLELethality is Not Always Weaponry it can be MANEUVER Stealthy Hybrid-Electric M113A4 used to transport rifle squad over rubble, debris Boom arm delivers infantry to unexpected spot on buildings Combat-proven mobility with RPG resistant applique armor
3. AMS 2D/3D maneuver forces employ maximum fire & maneuver to paralyze enemy SSCs as they collapse the enemy’s centers of gravity with lasting, decisive ground maneuver, ending the conflict clearly on our favorable terms “What matters in war is VICTORY, not prolonged operations, however brilliantly executed” ---Sun Tzu, The Art of War
Questions? LT Michael L. Sparks IN USAR firstname.lastname@example.org Book: www.geocities.com/air_mech_strike/amsbook.htm Internet: www.geocities.com/transformationunderfire www.geocities.com/strategicmaneuver Airborne!