Maneuver and other missions in OIF 1-37 FA 3/2 SBCT.
1st Battalion, 37th Field Artillery (1-37 FA), the FA battalion assigned to the Army's first Stryker Brigade Combat Team The brigade combat team (BCT) is the basic deployable unit of maneuver in the US Army. A brigade combat team consists of one combat arms branched maneuver brigade, and its attached support and fire units. (SBCT SBCT Stryker Brigade Combat Team (US Army)
SBCT South Bend Civic Theatre
SBCT Sam Bass Community Theatre
SBCT South Baldwin Community Theatre
SBCT San Benito County Transit
SBCT Standardized Bible Content Test ), conducted combat operations in Iraq from November 2003 to October 2004. The deployment of 3d Brigade, 2d Infantry Division (2/3 SBCT) to Iraq was the first operational deployment of an SBCT to combat.
During this yearlong effort in Iraq, 1-37 FA conducted many operations in support of the brigade--conducting counterfire and civil military operations This is a list of missions, operations, and projects. Missions in support of other missions are not listed independently. World War I
''See also List of military engagements of World War I
See: Collateralized mortgage obligation
See collateralized mortgage obligation (CMO). ), securing key assets, processing detainees, training the Iraqi National Guard The Iraqi National Guard was part of the new Iraqi military but has since been absorbed by the New Iraqi Army controlled by the interim government. Following the 2003 invasion of Iraq, United States Coalition Provisional Authority Chief Paul Bremer disbanded the military apparatus as well as conducting maneuver operations in 1-37 FA's battlespace. The battalion proved flexible and capable of meeting the demands and preserved options for the brigade commander In the United States Army, the commanding officer of a brigade is a Brigade Commander. The position is usually held by a colonel, although a lieutenant colonel can be selected for brigade command in lieu of an available colonel. by serving as an economy-of-force maneuver unit.
Just as other FA battalions before and FA battalions currently serving in a maneuver task force (TF) role in Iraq, 1-37 FA had to grow in terms of honing new skill sets, deliberately reorganizing its structure and preparing for many unknowns. Most challenging for the battalion and its leadership was serving in the role of infantry--maneuvering and controlling an area of operations An operational area defined by the joint force commander for land and naval forces. Areas of operation do not typically encompass the entire operational area of the joint force commander, but should be large enough for component commanders to accomplish their missions and protect their . But, like other FA units, 1-37 FA proved it was fully capable of serving in this capacity.
Tough Decisions and Breaking New Ground. During the final months of preparation for deployment, the battalion conducted a mission analysis and created a training plan to set up the batteries and Soldiers for success. Immediately, we established communications with FA battalions in Iraq to harvest current tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) and enemy trends, building a better understanding of the operating environment In computing, an operating environment is the environment in which users run programs, whether in a command line interface, such as in MS-DOS or the Unix shell, or in a graphical user interface, such as in the Macintosh operating system. and the unique missions being performed by fellow Redlegs. This was a "real-time" source of data from the theater and the basis of our training.
We altered the current battalion mission-essential task list (METL METL Metal
METL Mission Essential Task List
METL Molecular Epidemiology and Toxicology Laboratory
METL Metals Data Base ) and focused resources on skills that previously had not been at the forefront (see Figure 1). Additionally, the task of massing battalion fires was eliminated from training plans. We realized that, given the small-unit decentralized de·cen·tral·ize
v. de·cen·tral·ized, de·cen·tral·iz·ing, de·cen·tral·iz·es
1. To distribute the administrative functions or powers of (a central authority) among several local authorities. operations in Iraq, it was unlikely there would be a demand for massed fires or that the three batteries would be in position and ready to fire simultaneously. Instead, the battalion ensured each firing battery was proficient in providing fires. The battalion also developed standing operating procedures (SOP) for small-unit dismounted military operations in urban terrain (MOUT MOUT military operations on urban terrain (US DoD)
MOUT Managed Object Under Test ).
Then the battalion focused on individual and small-unit tasks to bring Soldiers to a new level of confidence in weapons proficiency and battle drills that platoons and batteries could execute in support of the missions we thought we would be assigned. The batteries were organized into flexible organizations consisting of two platoons (built by dividing the four, 10-man howitzer howitzer: see artillery. sections) and a headquarters detachment (created from the fire direction center That element of a command post, consisting of gunnery and communications personnel and equipment, by means of which the commander exercises fire direction and/or fire control. The fire direction center receives target intelligence and requests for fire, and translates them into , or FDC FDC - Floppy Disk Controller , and remaining battery personnel).
Another tough decision for 1-37 FA was to train without all its assigned equipment to have additional high-mobility multipurpose mul·ti·pur·pose
Designed or used for several purposes: a multipurpose room; multipurpose software.
Adjective wheeled vehicles (HMMWVs) modified into "Special Forces-like gunships." This later would prove to be one of the best moves we made; these vehicles were the mainstay of our force and operations.
Finally, we had to change the mindset mind·set or mind-set
1. A fixed mental attitude or disposition that predetermines a person's responses to and interpretations of situations.
2. An inclination or a habit. of the battery leadership and Soldiers. This was challenging as we had no way to plan and rehearse for specific missions before deploying. Both the brigade and battalion missions were unclear. For example, not until 3/2 SBCT had conducted operations in theater did we know we would replace the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault). Based on our analysis and feedback from units in Iraq, we took a very broad approach to training on dismounted skills to cover a spectrum of potential operations.
Operation Arrowhead Blizzard in Samarra. The unit's first combat experiences were during Operation Arrowhead Blizzard in Samarra. 3/2 SBCT conducted operations with the 3d Brigade, 4th Infantry. During this operation, TF 1-37 FA conducted a myriad of tasks in support of the brigade. (See Figure 2.)
C Battery task organized with sappers from C/1092 EN and constructed and operated a forward detainee-processing center to relieve the forces operating in Samarra of the task of processing and transporting detainees. Using its firebase fire·base
A military base or site from which heavy fire is directed against the enemy.
Noun 1. firebase - an artillery base to support advancing troops construction skills, the battery established a small strongpoint strong·point
A military stronghold. on the outskirts of Samarra that also provided security for several retransmission Retransmission might refer to:
The task force provided 24/7 route security along the two major lines of communication "Lines of Communication" is an episode from the fourth season of the science-fiction television series Babylon 5. Synopsis
Franklin and Marcus attempt to persuade the Mars resistance to assist Sheridan in opposing President Clark. (LOCs) that led from the brigade base of operations Noun 1. base of operations - installation from which a military force initiates operations; "the attack wiped out our forward bases"
air base, air station - a base for military aircraft
army base - a large base of operations for an army on Forward Operating Base An airfield used to support tactical operations without establishing full support facilities. The base may be used for an extended time period. Support by a main operating base will be required to provide backup support for a forward operating base. Also called FOB. (FOB FOB 1) adj. short for Free on Board, meaning shipped to a specific place without cost. 2) Friend of Bill (Clinton). (See: Free on Board) ) Pacesetter, approximately 35 kilometers from Samarra. B Battery secured the northern route using our HMMWV HMMWV High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV is a trademark of AM General LLC; aka HUMVEE, also a trademark of AM General LLC) gunships.
Equipped with the anti-tank guided missile An anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) or anti-tank guided weapon (ATGW) is a guided missile primarily designed to hit and destroy heavily-armored tanks and other armored fighting vehicles. (ATGM ATGM antitank guided missile (US DoD)
ATGM antitank guided munition (US DoD)
ATGM Astegmen (3rd Lieutenant in Turkish Army)
ATGM All Tube Gamma Monitor ) variant of the Stryker vehicle, C/52 IN secured the more dangerous southern route. C/52 IN was tasked-organized with a howitzer section from B Battery for greater haul capacity for barrier materials to construct traffic control points (TCPs). The section also provided the additional men required for this mission.
A Battery provided a 6400-mil firing capability on FOB Pacesetter. Three platoons of two howitzers were laid and set on different azimuths to decrease shift time. The FDC directed the platoon to the required set of howitzers during fire missions.
This paid off one night as rockets attacked the FOB. The Q-36 Firefinder radar, also located on the FOB, acquired the attack, and A Battery executed counterfire, preventing 21 additional rockets from being fired at the FOB.
The missions during this phase of the battalion's deployment were marked by dispersed and independent operations at the battery and company level. Command and control was challenging but made easier via the use of Force XXI battle command brigade and below (FBC See fully buzzword compliant. [B.sup.2]).
As a new maneuver commander, I relied on my observations of the brigade commander during many training events and my experiences as a fire support officer (FSO (Free Space Optics) Transmitting optical signals through the air using infrared lasers. Also known as "wireless optics," FSO provides point-to-point and point-to-multipoint transmission at very high speeds without requiring a government license for use of the spectrum. ) at the company, battalion and brigade levels to lead the operations. I positioned myself forward at the detainee de·tain·ee
A person held in custody or confinement: a political detainee.
Noun 1. detainee - some held in custody
political detainee site because it allowed me to best influence the majority of the task force. This was a departure from the traditional positioning I had experienced--"snaplinked" to the brigade commander.
Mosul and Relief in Place (RIP) with the 101st. After operations in Samarra, the brigade moved north away from the Sunni Triangle The Sunni Triangle refers to a densely-populated region of Iraq to the northwest of Baghdad that is inhabited mostly by Sunni Muslim Arabs. The roughly triangular area's corners are usually said to lie near Baghdad (on the east side of the triangle), Ramadi (on the west side) and and executed an RIP with the 101st Division. The SBCT took over the battlespace of a division and was stretched across an area approximately 137 miles by 165 miles. In other terms, our 5,000 troops replaced the 25,000 troops in the division and its attachments.
As 1-37 FA arrived in Mosul, its mission was yet to be assigned, based on the complexities of the RIP with the 101st. Analyzing the area of responsibility (AOR AOR
The ISO 4217 currency code for Angolan Reajustado Kwanza. ) and the capabilities of his units, the brigade commander did not assign a mission to 1-37 FA until late into the RIP. This proved challenging for the battalion. However, our earlier experiences with ambiguity allowed us to remain "steady in the harness" and focus on improving force protection to vehicles and Soldier living areas.
1-37 FA's assignment eventually became securing a large area of operations (AO) encircling encircling (en·serˑ·k Mosul (approximately 1,700 square miles). This allowed the brigade commander to place his infantry battalions in Mosul and establish an economy-of-force on the outer periphery of the city.
TF 1-37 FA was quartered in Mosul and maneuvered through the city to get to anywhere in the AO. This built a unique proficiency among the platoons that navigated daily in the built-up terrain.
C Battery had the mission to secure FOB Freedom, the home of the brigade headquarters and TF Olympia, the brigade's higher headquarters. C Battery maintained this security mission until the battalion redeployed
During this phase of the operation, TF 1-37 FA reorganized, losing C Battery and some engineers and gaining a target acquisition battery (TAB) (A/151 TAB) from the Minnesota Army National Guard The Minnesota National Guard comprises Army and Air National Guard components. The Constitution of the United States specifically charges the National Guard with dual federal and state missions. . In Mosul, TF 1-37 FA secured the AO and a large fuel transport point, built Iraqi institutions, mentored the Iraqi Police The creation of this unit was guided by the Coalition Provisional Authority however the command of the Police belongs to the new Government of Iraq. Overview
The Iraqi Police Forces are part of the Iraqi Ministry of the Interior (MOI) which in conjunction with the Civilian and facilities protection services force (FPSF FPSF Frost-Protected Shallow Foundations (construction) ), and improved the Iraqi infrastructure.
It was in this phase that 1-37 FA gained its "sea legs sea legs
The ability to adjust one's balance to the motion of a ship, especially in rough seas.
Informal " in conducting "cordon and knocks" as well as combined operations For the department of the British War Office during World War II, see .
In the military, combined operations are operations conducted by forces of two or more allied nations acting together for the accomplishment of a single mission. See also
1-37 FA also prosecuted an intensive CMO campaign to build up the legitimacy of 10 Iraqi city councils as the country approached Transfer of Sovereignty. Based on the lack of civil affairs Designated Active and Reserve component forces and units organized, trained, and equipped specifically to conduct civil affairs activities and to support civil-military operations. Also called CA. See also civil affairs activities; civil-military operations. teams (CATs), Redleg officers executed the CA tasks.
In Mosul, the battalion's depth of leadership was put to the test. Due to a unique tailoring of forces and personnel shortages, I left TF 1-37 FA in the capable hands of the battalion executive officer (XO), Major Rodney L. Olson, to take command of TF Sykes for six weeks. This TF was at FOB Regulars (later named Endurance) at Qayarrah West Airbase
TF Sykes was a unique TF (see Figure 3) consisting of units that remained in the vicinity of Qayarrah. Its parent headquarters (5-20 IN) was successfully executing convoy security operations to reopen LOCs south of Balad and Baghdad previously interdicted by the enemy.
This was an awesome task--a Redleg commanding a TF with an ad hoc For this purpose. Meaning "to this" in Latin, it refers to dealing with special situations as they occur rather than functions that are repeated on a regular basis. See ad hoc query and ad hoc mode. staff and no FA units. Additionally, I had one Iraqi National Guard (ING) battalion under the operational control (OPCON OPCON Operational Control
OPCON Operation Control ) of the TF. I relied on my experiences gained during operations in the periphery of Mosul and placed my faith in the staff and units that had a thorough knowledge of the AO as I became familiar with the AO and situation.
I matured during this experience, in terms of decision making. This situation forced me to rely on sound reasoning linked to plans and operations because I was not familiar with the personalities, talents, strengths or weaknesses of the commanders, staff or Soldiers in the task force. Learning to live outside of one's comfort zone can be taxing, but, in the end, it was very worth-while.
Change of Mission and Link Up. In June, 1-37 FA handed over its AO around Mosul to two Infantry battalions and moved south to Qayarrah where I was already in command. The brigade had accomplished its security and CMO tasks in Mosul and shifted its effort to secure a new AO and train and integrate the ING. This would be the final set for TF 1-37 FA in an AO the size of Rhode Island Rhode Island, island, United States
Rhode Island, island, 15 mi (24 km) long and 5 mi (8 km) wide, S R.I., at the entrance to Narragansett Bay. It is the largest island in the state, with steep cliffs and excellent beaches. (see the task organization in Figure 4).
Conditions in the Tigris River Tigris River
Arabic Dijlah Turkish Dicle biblical Hiddekel
River, Turkey and Iraq. It originates in the Taurus Mountains at Lake Hazar and flows 1,180 mi (1,900 km) southeast through Turkey and past Baghdad to unite with the Euphrates River at Valley and the vicinity of the FOB became more challenging and dangerous as TF 1-37 FA arrived. The situation required the task force to execute many cordon and knocks and cordon and searches, conducting many with the ING forces it had trained.
Other missions included securing a mass gravesite grave·site
A place used for graves or a grave. in the vicinity of Al Hadr. This site was where large numbers of Kurds were systematically murdered. It was identified as a crime scene that could provide evidence against Saddam Hussein Saddam Hussein
(born April 28, 1937, Tikrit, Iraq—died Dec. 30, 2006, Baghdad) President of Iraq (1979–2003). He joined the Ba'th Party in 1957. Following participation in a failed attempt to assassinate Iraqi Pres. . We also secured a large former Iraqi ammunition storage point, where munitions mu·ni·tion
War materiel, especially weapons and ammunition. Often used in the plural.
tr.v. mu·ni·tioned, mu·ni·tion·ing, mu·ni·tions
To supply with munitions. were being destroyed by US contractors, and the brigade's retransmission site.
Not withstanding the offensive operations mentioned earlier, one of the most demanding missions was conducting ING training. The TF trained two and one-half battalions of ING on the FOB. During one of its most intensive training periods, the TF trained 13 platoons of ING on the FOB while meeting its other security and operational requirements (programming) operational requirements - Qualitative and quantitative parameters that specify the desired capabilities of a system and serve as a basis for determining the operational effectiveness and suitability of a system prior to deployment. .
Additionally, force protection of the FOB remained challenging. Responsibility for protecting the FOB with two task forces and many US and Iraqi personnel kept the command and staff fully employed and ever vigilant.
Relief in Place. In October 2004, 2-8 FA, 1/25 SBCT, replaced 1-37 FA. 2-8 FA conducted a unique mission-for-mission exchange. It deployed with only its personnel and individual weapons and gear and fell in on 1-37 FA's equipment.
Before 2-8 FA deployed, we established communications with the battalion and transferred TTPs and knowledge of the battlespace and missions. This allowed 2-8 FA to prepare with a greater focus back at Fort Lewis. The battalion arrived aggressive, confident and fit--the torch was passed to another outstanding FA battalion.
On 3 November 2004, 1-37 FA returned to Fort Lewis with all its Soldiers. With the battalion's capabilities fully realized, the brigade conducted a final after-action review (AAR Aar, river: see Aare. ) and reviewed the battalion's METL. 1-37 FA's METL, including maneuver tasks, was confirmed and approved (see Figure 5 on Page 14).
Lessons Learned. I learned several lessons that may be helpful for other units deploying to Iraq.
Force Protection. This is everyone's business and needs the leaders' constant attention. There is always some way to improve the protection or safety of Soldiers--where they eat and sleep or how they operate.
One goal of 1-37 FA was to place Soldiers where they could sleep relatively assured of safety. As I learned from a fellow battalion commander In the United States Army and United States Marine Corps, the commanding officer of a battalion is a Battalion Commander. The position is usually held by a lieutenant colonel, although a major can be selected for battalion command in lieu of an available lieutenant colonel. , sleep is a "weapon" and is key to better performance. Our goal was to put Soldiers under concrete, whenever possible, or under sand bags, often sacrificing comfort for protection.
The availability of funds and other resources allowed for creative force protection measures. Concrete and steel obtained locally often provided extra protection to positions and vehicles.
The leadership must inspect daily and maintain discipline to continuously improve the level of force protection. The unit must follow through with vigilance and never lose momentum by giving in a falling inwards; a collapse.
See also: Giving to a "good enough" attitude.
The chain of command must challenge Soldiers to offer their ideas for force protection; many of our best ideas came from young Soldiers who thought of methods to improve force protection.
Effects Coordinator (ECOORD) versus TF Commander. During operations in Iraq, balancing the responsibilities as the ECOORD and TF commander was challenging. I quickly learned that at the pace of operations on that distributed battlefield, the deputy effects coordinator (DECOORD) could handle the mission with limited oversight the majority of the time.
This was a dramatic change from what I experienced at the training centers. However, I believe that, at the lower end of the spectrum, the FA commander can make more of a difference as a TF commander than by serving the same time only as the ECOORD.
Every Move is a Combat Operation. You must plan, resource and battle drill every move to ensure the safety of everyone in the convoy. Pre-combat checks/pre-combat inspections (PCCs/PCIs) are a must. Criteria for success must be met before the move. Soldiers must be empowered to identify deficiencies without the fear of repercussions repercussions npl → répercussions fpl
repercussions npl → Auswirkungen pl to maintain a positive program of success.
Cultural Awareness and Understanding. 1-37 FA's understanding of the Iraqi culture never got very deep--despite working closely with Iraqis by mentoring mayors and city councils and training and joint operations with the ING. No unit can spend the amount of time it takes to really understand the complex and unique peoples in its AO (tribes, religion, etc.).
To improve understanding, units should employ interpreters not only during operations, but also as language teachers in classes. The focus should be on key words and phrases Words and Phrases®
A multivolume set of law books published by West Group containing thousands of judicial definitions of words and phrases, arranged alphabetically, from 1658 to the present. Soldiers are likely to encounter or will require during operations. Often we relied solely on interpreters and assumed the additional risk of our Soldiers not truly understanding. Additionally, interpreters can be outstanding instructors of the culture in a given AO or of Iraqis in general.
Weapons Proficiency. Confidence in weapons is a must. Soldiers must be proficient in their weapons and capable on all other weapons. This is gained though ranges, close quarters marksmanship Marksmanship
(1846–1917) famed sharpshooter in Wild West show. [Am. Hist.: Flexner, 67]
son of Pan, companion to Muses; skilled in archery. [Gk. Myth. (CQM CQM Certified Quality Manager
CQM Conseil Québécois de la Musique (Quebec, Canada)
CQM Center for Quality of Management
CQM Construction Quality Management
CQM constituent-quark model
CQM Code Quality Management ) and hands-on operations. Weapons proficiency and proper clearing procedures prevent accidental discharges and minimize risk to the force.
ING Training and Integration. Working closely with Iraqi security forces Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) is the Multi-National Force-Iraq umbrella name for the military and police forces that serve under the Government of Iraq.
The armed forces are administered by the Ministry of Defense (MOD), and the Iraqi Police is administered by the Ministry of is challenging and takes patience and flexibility. As relationships develop, trust is best built through the actions of both US forces and the Iraqis.
It is easy for those working closely with Iraqis to become frustrated and tired over time due to the language barrier, the levels of competence of the Iraqis in their new roles and missions, and cultural differences. Those who train or liaise with Iraqis must be rotated on a schedule that does not sacrifice experience but preserves morale.
Communications with Like Units. 1-37 FA was able to communicate with units in Iraq before training for deployment. The digital age allows units to "talk" to each other as never before.
Much of the success of the RIP between 1-37 FA and 2-8 FA was due to open communications at all levels between the units well before the RIP. Additionally, 2-8 FA had a unique opportunity with support at Fort Lewis to reach into our Army battle command system
Although not all units will have this capability, it's essential to use whatever means are available to obtain the real-time information on enemy TTPs, conditions in specific AOs or anything else pertinent to operations.
Radar Management. Although operating as a maneuver unit, TF 1-37 FA consistently managed more than its organic radars (a Q-36 and Q-37) once it moved to Mosul. The radar deployment orders (RDOs) of the six radars in our brigade--four Q-36, one Q-37 and one lightweight countermortar radar (LWCMR)--were developed by the brigade's joint fires and effects cell (JFEC JFEC Japan Federation of Economic Organizations ) and the DECOORD.
However, because the TAB and organic radars are under the control of the FA battalion commander, he must ensure a level of oversight and analysis so the counterfire intelligence performs at an adequate level. To ensure the priority areas were covered, we established a detailed plan for conducting maintenance during the periods when the enemy did not routinely fire. Trend analysis also was key to orienting the right radars at the right time as well as allowing the brigade to focus on specific areas and times to patrol. Finally, a radar "play book" was developed with plans to execute if any one or more radars went down due to attacks or unexpected repair requirements.
Maneuver Lessons. These are lessons I learned while serving as a maneuver commander.
Tactical Patience--Allowing Subordinates to Develop the Situation. This was challenging and only came with experience while conducting many operations. The commander must fight the urge for constant updates during challenging missions. This will allow the men to conduct their tasks with complete focus. When things don't go as planned, reports come fast and steady.
Fewer but better reports come when the commander asks the right questions and allows subordinates to regain situational awareness rather than asking for many reports that are distracting from the most important thing at that moment: the mission.
Rehearsals. All operations must be rehearsed--from convoys to cordon and searches. The rehearsal identifies deficiencies and allows leaders to make decisions that mitigate risks at the points of friction or danger. Battle drills for movement, recovery, hasty recovery, contact--all must be rehearsed. Units must maintain a program or SOP regarding rehearsals to ensure complacency is defeated and Soldiers are proficient at the key tasks during an operation.
It is the detailed rehearsal for offensive operations that allows Soldiers to visualize their physical positioning and actions in relationship to the other Soldiers of the team, squad or platoon. This builds Soldiers' confidence in the plan, enables them to understand their role in accomplishing the mission and empowers them to make smart decisions at their levels.
Risk, Safety and Leadership. There are times when a leader needs to "go with his hunch" and stop actions when the conditions are not set to mitigate risk. Operations that a unit plans typically are set to be executed on that unit's planning timeline. Rather than just adhere to a timeline, commanders have to recommend and enforce abort (1) To exit a function or application without saving any data that has been changed.
(2) To stop a transmission.
(programming) abort - To terminate a program or process abnormally and usually suddenly, with or without diagnostic information. criteria for operations. Leaders must cancel or delay any operation that does not require an immediate response when the conditions have not been met for successful and safe execution.
Positioning on the Battlefield. I grew to realize the importance of positioning. This is not a new lesson for seasoned maneuver commanders; however, it was for me. The key was my position needed to be where I best could influence operations. There were times when my position forward with the unit provided more to the fight where I could better understand the situation and apply additional resources, if required.
When multiple and dispersed operations were taking place, as much as I did not like it, the best location for me proved to be in the tactical operations center A physical groupment of those elements of a general and special staff concerned with the current tactical operations and the tactical support thereof. Also called TOC. See also command post. (TOC) where communications were the best. This allowed me to balance the needs of several units with the added power of the staff.
Task Organization--Below the Platoon Level. A key lesson in task organization was simply overcoming the units'/sections' resistance to mixing and matching their capabilities. We do not task organize very often in the Field Artillery--much less below the platoon level. However, when conducting the missions as a task force, our reorganization often occurred below the platoon level. This resulted in more flexible and talented organizations for specific missions. When task organizing at that level, we needed more time for training and rehearsals to build the team.
Planning for All Assets Available. The commander and staff had to learn to employ and synchronize multiple brigade assets in support of our own operations. The use of fire support in all forms (USAF, Army Aviation, howitzers and mortars) won't be lost on any commander who has served as an FSO. However, the inclusion of tactical human intelligence (HUMINT HUMINT Human Intelligence ) teams (THTs) and unmanned aerial vehicles
We can do it! The greatest lesson I learned was that maneuver skills are learned skills. Redlegs are fully capable of executing Infantry tasks. We are only limited by our time to train, the size of our organizations and the equipment currently issued.
As currently trained, equipped and manned, I am convinced that Artillery battalions are not the choice to seize terrain and that when terrain must be seized, nothing does it better than the combined arms team The full integration and application of two or more arms or elements of one Military Service into an operation. led by maneuver. However, once that terrain is seized and the larger battles are won, there remains a myriad of maneuver skills required to maintain security. This has been the case in Iraq, and Artillery units have been instrumental in maintaining that security.
Final Thoughts. Serving as a maneuver battalion in Iraq was demanding for 1-37 FA. It wasn't easy on the leadership in terms of experience, and it wasn't easy for the Soldiers in terms of initial training. 1-37 FA was successful in Iraq due to the discipline and flexibility of its Soldiers and leaders at every level. Its ability to grow into missions while in contact proved this. As great as the learning curve was for the unit, its accomplishments were just as great.
Any Soldier or unit in the US Army can accomplish any mission or task with adequate training and resourcing. With foresight, flexibility and a "can-do" mindset, any Artillery unit can achieve outstanding results with any mission in Iraq.
Mission Statement: On order, 1-37 FA deploys rapidly by land, sea or air to any AOR and provides lethal, nonlethal and joint effects to the SBCT. Be prepared to establish node security, force protection and stability and support operations (SASO) in order to provide economy-of-force to the SBCT. METL: * Deploy/redeploy. * Coordinate and control battalion moves. * Conduct counterfire operations. (1) * Control delivery of fires. (1) * Coordinate/monitor CSS operations. * Conduct force protection. (2) * Conduct node security. (3) * Provide survey, Met and radar support. (4) Notes: 1. Tasks receive reduced level of training (based on information at the time). 2. Basically a full-time implied task--was placed on METL to provide additional focus. 3. Based on the likelihood of having to secure FOBs, entry points, fixed sites, etc. 4. Based on the likelihood that 155-mm fires would not be used extensively but that survey and Met would still be required for mortars and radar intelligence always would be required. Legend: AOR = Area of Operations CSS = Combat Service Support Met = Meteorological SBCT = Stryker Brigade Combat Team Figure 1: 1st Battalion, 37th Field Artillery (1-37 FA) Modified Mission Statement and Mission-Essential Task List (METL) Approved July 2003. The last three tasks in the METL were added for deployment training. HSB (-) CRT, 296 BSB FFT, 296 BSB A Battery (-) B Battery (-) C Battery 1/HSB/1-37 FA 1/1/A/1-37 FA 1/C/1092 EN C/52 IN (9 ATGMs and 1 Fire Support Stryker Vehicles) 1/1/B/1-37 FA C/1092 EN (-), WVARNG (Corps Wheeled EN Battalion MTOE) Legend: ATGMs = Anti-Tank Guided Missiles BSB = Brigade Support Battalion CRT = Combat Repair Team EN = Engineers FFT = Field Feeding Team HSB = Headquarters and Services Battery IN = Infantry MTOE = Modified Table of Organization and Equipment WVARNG = West Virginia Army National Guard Figure 2: Task Force (TF) 1-37 FA Task Organization--Samarra. The key tasks in Samarra were to provide counterfire; secure lines of communications (LOCs) to Samarra from FOB Pacesetter; hold, process and transport detainees; and provide a FOB quick-reaction force (QRF). HQs Plt/HHC 5-20 IN* LST, 296 BSB 445 CAT, CAARNG 136 THT, 1-14 Cav, 3/2 SBCT (DS) 333 THT, 310 MI Bn (DS) 335 THT, 310 MI Bn (GS) (TACON) C/52 IN (9 ATGMs and 1 Fire Support Stryker Vehicles) C/1-14 Cav (9 Reconnaissance, 2 Mortar, 1 Fire Support and 1 Medical Evacuation Stryker Vehicles) C/276 EN (-), VAARNG (DS) (Corps Wheeled EN Battalion MTOE) 102d ING Battalion (OPCON) * 5-20 IN provided convoy security from April through June 2004. Legend: CAARNG = California Army National Guard CAT = Civil Affairs Team Cav = Cavalry DS = Direct Support GS = General Support HHC = Headquarters and Headquarters Company ING = Iraqi Army National Guard LST = Logistic Support Team MI = Military Intelligence OPCON = Operational Control Plt = Platoon SBCT = Stryker Brigade Combat Team TACON = Tactical Control THT = Tactical Human Intelligence (HUMINT) Team VAARNG = Virginia Army National Guard Figure 3: TF Sykes--Qayarrah. The task force's key tasks were to secure the area of operations (AO), command and control ([C.sup.2]) the FOB at Qayarrah West Airbase, train Iraqi Army National Guard and secure Ammunition Supply Point (ASP) Jaguar. HSB (Q-36 and Q-37 in Mosul)* CRT, 296 BSB FFT, 296 BSB LST, 296 BSB 445 CAT, CAARNG 136 THT, 1-14 Cav, 3/2 SBCT (DS) 333 THT, 310 MI Bn (DS) 335 THT, 310 MI Bn (GS) (TACON) A Battery B Battery C/52 IN (9 ATGMs and 1 Fire Support Stryker) A/131 FA TAB (-) TXARNG (in Mosul with 3 X Q-36) C/276 EN (-) VAARNG (DS) (Corps Wheeled EN Battalion MTOE) 1/266 OD Company, WIARNG (OPCON) 102d ING Battalion (OPCON) 107th ING Battalion (OPCON) * C/1-37 FA, also in Mosul, was OPCON to 3/2 SBCT to secure FOB Freedom. Legend: OD = Ordnance Corps TAB = Target Acquisition Battery TXARNG = Texas Army National Guard WIARNG = Wisconsin Army National Guard Figure 4: TF 1-37 FA--Qayarrah. The task force's key tasks were to secure the AO; command and control FOB Qayarrah West Airbase; train ING; secure the brigade retransmission site, ASP Jaguar and a mass grave site in the vicinity of Al Hadr; integrate ING into combined operations; and be prepared to provide fires. Mission Statement: 1-37 FA deploys rapidly by land, air or sea to a designated AOR and provides full-spectrum fires in support of the Arrowhead BCT. Be prepared to conduct area security operations as part of a brigade economy-of-force mission. METL: Battalion * Deploy. * Conduct counterfire operations. * Conduct delivery of fires. * Conduct CSS operations. * Execute battle command. * Be prepared to conduct area security. (1) Howitzer Battery * Deploy. * Provide indirect fires. * Conduct tactical moves. * Defend battery area and materials. * Be prepared to establish TCPs. (2) * Be prepared to conduct cordon and search. (2) HSB * Deploy. * Perform CSS operations. * Conduct tactical moves. * Defend battery areas and materials. * Prepare for combat. * Be prepared to establish TCPs. (2) Notes: 1. To control terrain--does not imply "seize" terrain. 2. Based on experience in Iraq. Legend: BCT = Brigade Combat Team TCPs = Traffic Control Points Figure 5: 1-37 FA Mission Statement and METL Approved January 2005
By Lieutenant Colonel Steven A. Sliwa
Lieutenant Colonel Steven A. Sliwa, until recently, commanded the 1st Battalion, 37th Field Artillery (1-37 FA), 3d Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT), 2d Infantry Division, at Fort Lewis, Washington. He commanded 1-37 FA during the process of certifying the Army's first SBCT as well as during its yearlong deployment to Iraq. Currently, he is the Assistant G3 for I Corps at Fort Lewis. In his previous assignment, he was a Strategic Planner in the Directorate for Strategy and Policy, J5, Joint Staff, at the Pentagon. Among other assignments, he was the Brigade Fire Support Officer (FSO) for 1st Brigade and Executive Officer (XO) of 3-6 FA, both in the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry) at Fort Drum, New York This article is about the U.S. Army base in New York State. For other places with a similar name, see Fort Drum.
Fort Drum is a census-designated place and U.S. Army military reservation in Jefferson County, New York, United States. . He participated in Operation Desert Storm Noun 1. Operation Desert Storm - the United States and its allies defeated Iraq in a ground war that lasted 100 hours (1991)
Gulf War, Persian Gulf War - a war fought between Iraq and a coalition led by the United States that freed Kuwait from Iraqi invaders; in the Gulf with the 3d Armored Division and in Operation Uphold Democracy Operation Uphold Democracy (September 19, 1994 – March 31, 1995) began in September 1994 with the deployment of the U.S. led multinational force in Haiti. This force was made up primarily of members of the 3rd Special Forces Group. in Haiti with the 25th Infantry Division (Light). He has been selected as a National Security Fellow at the JFK School of Government at Harvard University.