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John Kettler

Why doesn't the US Air Support roster in CMBS have the A-10 on it?

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No one will ever try to stop 240mm rockets. But if MLRS will use ATACMS it will be intercepted even by tunguska.

How US plan to stop Russian MLRS hordes is the good question too.

 

We arent :)

 

Totally revising and "revolutionizing" your armed forces at the drop of a hat has a tendency to contribute much more than you'd think to superpowers ceasing to exist, especially for a threat you expect to be much more common than it would in reality.

 

Not going to war in the first place is easier.

Edited by Nerdwing

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Waiting for the bread lines to get longer mostly.  

There are bread lines in Russia? Didn't see any so far.

 

On topic, I think that getting more organic artillery support may be a partial solution to the requirements you bring up panzer. What is the current average organic artillery element for a brigade?

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It's more the implication that the sort of military spending for Soviet power supreme was eventually ruinous.

 

Each brigade as a full battalion of artillery, towed 105s and 155s for IBCTs and SBCTs respectively with self propelled 155s for ABCTs.  Additionally there's 120 MM mortars generally held at Battalion level, although the recon troops and stryker companies have those mortars at those echelons.  As a rule rotary wing is pushed down to Brigade/Battalion level when available. 

 

Artillery, especially precision artillery is good.  But the amount of hurt bombs drop, and large ATGMs are very useful.  The destruction wrought by good CAS is widely out of proportion to what artillery can perform.  Additionally when dealing with mobile enemies, CAS is straight up murder level effective.

 

It's a good tool.  Just it's something the USAF would rather not do, but that the Army is not allowed to do for itself.  

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The OOB for the heavy mech BDe assumes:

- 2 152mm SP divizions (36 guns).

- 2 120mm batteries (12 guns) between two motorised rifle battalions.

- 1 MRL battery (6 BM21 class launchers).

 

(small mortars and AGLs are not counted)

 

The point is that artillery (especially rocket artillery) is a good partial replacement for CAS, especially when you consider that those assets are not a subject to the AD fires.

Edited by ikalugin

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On the comms - Russia has ample experience in developing command systems (especially above BDe) - Manevr and various IADS related systems show that. Sozvezdie (and it's VDV equivalent) is new, but has shown to be adequate in recent exercises and geopolitical events. Ratnik gets the personal dismounted comms to western level (individual encrypted radios and sat nav for all, command gear for commanders).

 

Uragan has global coverage now and about the same accuracy for the mil grade signals (though the orbits are different, that is true). Current status is 24/2, which provides complete global coverage.

Edited by ikalugin

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That's interesting. Could you describe the communication architecture in more detail?  

 

 

 

The point is that artillery (especially rocket artillery) is a good partial replacement for CAS, especially when you consider that those assets are not a subject to the AD fires.

 

Just as much as your putter will fill in for your 9 Iron if you  hit the ball hard enough.

Edited by panzersaurkrautwerfer

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It'd be interesting.  If you're talking about wire/FM networks then okay got it for command systems.  If you're speaking to the sat based or HF networks...maybe you should invest in some more exports?

I still fail to understand you :( , would you please clarify your request?

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The OOB for the heavy mech BDe

Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade TO&E (artillery):

 

2x SP Howitzer Battalions  (36 2S19/2S3).

1x MRL Battalion (18 BM-21).

1x AT Battalion (24 9P162/9P149 and 6 MT-12).

3x Mortar batteries (24 2S12) or SP howitzer batteries (18 2S34) in motorised rifle battalions.

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Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade TO&E (artillery):

 

2x SP Howitzer Battalions  (36 2S19/2S3).

1x MRL Battalion (18 BM-21).

1x AT Battalion (24 9P162/9P149 and 6 MT-12).

3x Mortar batteries (24 2S12) or SP howitzer batteries (18 2S34) in motorised rifle battalions.

This is dependent on a specific BDe. Just as a matter curiocity, where did you get that specific OOB?

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This is dependent on a specific BDe. Just as a matter curiocity, where did you get that specific OOB?

Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade TO&E № 5/060 (Штат № 5/060 - отдельной мотострелковой бригады на МТ-ЛБМ) and information from vif, otvaga2004 etc.

Edited by Bydax

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This does get to the heart of why having a dedicated platform matters though.  The important thing about A-10s was they only really trained to kill stuff on the ground.  Nominally at least, they know what an M1 tank looks like vs a T-72 (nominally, quizing USAF dudes on vehicle identification is sort of terrifying.  There's at least some accounts that in both 1991 and 2003 the USAF largely relied on gun tube orientation.  Additionally some A-10s of all things rather infamously shot the hell out of a bunch of Marines in 2003 because they weren't sure what the USMC AAV-7s were so they assumed it was hostile).

 

Moving away from any sort of dedicated or well rehearsed and trained CAS is bad juju.  And F-35/B-1 CAS is not dedicated, well rehearsed or well trained.

 

That wouldn't have changed things much, except it would have been a Maverick or JDAM rather than a Paveway that killed the Kurds. They were told to look out for a T-55, they spotted and correctly IDed a T-55, then placed the ordnance in the desired location... problem being there were T-55s on both sides of the battlefield. Just one of those mistakes that happens sometimes.

 

The friendly-fire incident at An Nasiriyah was a bit more of a mistake on the ground; the A-10s were specifically told the north side of the bridge was devoid of friendly vehicles and, upon a second query on the matter, were informed it was definitely clear due to a doctrinal mixup (FAC assumed they would be doing their own spotting entirely, A-10s thought the FAC had eyes) and laid waste to some bunched up AAVs. A similar thing happened with a British recon unit pushing past the FSCL (i.e. the "do not cross without permission" line); A-10s were told to be on the lookout for vehicles carrying orange rocket warheads around in a certain sector, they spotted a few with flashes of orange (aircraft recognition panels that were supposed to be taken off at that stage in the campaign) and asked higher to ensure the area was devoid of friendlies. Higher confirmed the area was free of friendlies and the A-10s tore into them.

 

If you give your support bad info, bad things can and do happen, regardless of airframe.

Edited by Apocal

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In terms of communications architecture I'm referring to the systems the various systems the Russian military uses to talk, how they interact with each other, and how information is transmitted.  So like, AFATDS lets everything that's a "fires" piece in the Army share the same information allowing artillery units to coordinate across units, space and time (so you could fire a ToT barrage using battalion mortars, your BDE's artillery battalion, the neighboring BDE's artillery, and the USMC gun battery across the road without anything more than the authorization to do so and clearance of fires).  I have not seen similar capabilities in literature concerning Russian military forces which seems to indicate you're still largely stovepiped up and down (your battalion talks to your BDE's artillery, which takes to BDE, which then talks to the next BDE who then talks to their artillery BN to coordinate cross fires).

 

The number of guns is also less relevant than how they are employed.  I mean if you shoot a man ten times or twenty times, in some circumstances the additional ten bullets matter, but in most cases it's the first 1-5 bullets that were the relevant ones, and the rest are just excessive.  As a rule and from the alignment indicated by the OOB it looks like the question is not a matter of massing, it is a matter of ensuring each element has access to a similar number of gun systems, with the difference being the American system is designed to leverage superior fire coordination to ensure the 18 guns for each maneuver battalion is the same 18 guns across the board, while the Russian model allocates distinct packages of 18 guns to each unit.

 

Which is why I'm curious about the architecture of the command and communications of the Russian army.

 

 Re: M829A4

 

No idea.  They weren't testing them near where I was tanking, and in the professional sense at the officer end it's not as important that it's so many meters long, nearly as much as what it can do, so I haven't bothered to look/inquire.

 

Re: CAS

 

In practice while working with the A-10, they're a lot better at the coordination piece.  In practice the A-10s try to establish where you are, where they enemy is, and have a better picture of what they're about to drop on.  From my limited run ins other fixed wing, it was much closer to you're somewhere down there, and they're looking for a target to drop a bomb on.  While it was just NTC we had a somewhat darkly hilarious conversation with an RAF Typhoon that was certain one of our platoons was the set of enemy technicals he was looking for.  ("I see five times trucks on ridgeline, are those it?" "Negative target is two times trucks vicinity grid 12345678 village" "Are you postiive it's not five trucks on a ridge line? I see dismounts with weapons" "Negative, we are the five times trucks with guns on ridgeline."  "Oh.")

 

It's why I have such a hardon for Army controlled CAS, because CCA (the magic special made up US Army term for attack helicopter CAS) is just so much better at coordinating.  And it isn't even a matter of different platforms, it's a matter of integration of the assets on hand.  They know our graphic control measures.  They know we are four times tanks, located vicinity PL Blue, and they know what an M1A2 looks like, and they know what PL Blue is.

 

JTACs help with that, but JTACs don't actually live/work with the unit they're assigned to unless there's a war on, which really degrades just how effective they are at the integration piece.

 

In terms of blue on blue you always confirm targets.  There is literally nothing in the Iraqi inventory that looks remotely like an AAV-7.  Nothing.  Zip.  Nadda.  While reporting there are no friendlies across the river is good, the right response should have been "confirm last I think I see friendlies across river" not "Roger yolo, pickle two on jarheads."  Both incidents highlight the risk at having poor or limited coordination across spotting platforms and the price that comes from it.  If there were clear signs the USAF was concerned about this and was thinking about how to make it better, than cool thumbs up.  But collectively the USAF response has been to shrug, "stuff happens" and move the CAS mission to platforms even more removed from integration or coordination the supporting force.

 

CAS is great when it's on station and working.  There's some problems with it though.  And the USAF bluntly does not appear to be interested in fixing them.

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Re: CAS

 

In practice while working with the A-10, they're a lot better at the coordination piece.  In practice the A-10s try to establish where you are, where they enemy is, and have a better picture of what they're about to drop on.  From my limited run ins other fixed wing, it was much closer to you're somewhere down there, and they're looking for a target to drop a bomb on.  While it was just NTC we had a somewhat darkly hilarious conversation with an RAF Typhoon that was certain one of our platoons was the set of enemy technicals he was looking for.  ("I see five times trucks on ridgeline, are those it?" "Negative target is two times trucks vicinity grid 12345678 village" "Are you postiive it's not five trucks on a ridge line? I see dismounts with weapons" "Negative, we are the five times trucks with guns on ridgeline."  "Oh.")

 

It's why I have such a hardon for Army controlled CAS, because CCA (the magic special made up US Army term for attack helicopter CAS) is just so much better at coordinating.  And it isn't even a matter of different platforms, it's a matter of integration of the assets on hand.  They know our graphic control measures.  They know we are four times tanks, located vicinity PL Blue, and they know what an M1A2 looks like, and they know what PL Blue is.

 

JTACs help with that, but JTACs don't actually live/work with the unit they're assigned to unless there's a war on, which really degrades just how effective they are at the integration piece.

 

In terms of blue on blue you always confirm targets.  There is literally nothing in the Iraqi inventory that looks remotely like an AAV-7.  Nothing.  Zip.  Nadda.  While reporting there are no friendlies across the river is good, the right response should have been "confirm last I think I see friendlies across river" not "Roger yolo, pickle two on jarheads."  Both incidents highlight the risk at having poor or limited coordination across spotting platforms and the price that comes from it.  If there were clear signs the USAF was concerned about this and was thinking about how to make it better, than cool thumbs up.  But collectively the USAF response has been to shrug, "stuff happens" and move the CAS mission to platforms even more removed from integration or coordination the supporting force.

 

CAS is great when it's on station and working.  There's some problems with it though.  And the USAF bluntly does not appear to be interested in fixing them.

 

Well, there is nothing in the Iraqi inventory that looks like an AAV from teh ground. From the air, moving faster than 250 knots, most **** just looks like rectangles, especially on a smoke-filled battlefield, which is why they lean hard on stuff like "which direction are they facing/moving?", "are you SURE there are no friendlies?", etc. And in the case of An Nasiriyah, the FAC was basically yelling at the A-10s to hit the vehicles north of the bridge and stop bothering him while he was trying to coordinate other (rotary-wing, IIRC) assets. But in that case of troops-in-contact CAS, fixed-wing is in the customer-service business and the customer is always right, so...

 

Of course, we've fixed those issues now and the only downside is it takes 45-180 minutes to get a bomb on something.

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Panzer, this is two separate things. First thing is how your com network is built, ie how your information flows. In general you have links both vertically (higher command<->subordinates) and horizontal (neighbouring unit <-> neighbouring unit).

 

   The other thing is how you allocate fire support assets and who commands them. While the 120mm mortars and the 100mm guns would be allocated to the BTGs, with fire priority to that BTG (which operates semi independently), the long range fires would be primarily prioritised for the use of higher commander. While it may reduce some flexibility (ie a commander who would suddenly ask all guns to fire on his mission would get it denied) at the same time it improves efficiency (as the higher commander could concentrate on the point of decision he has selected, a fear filled commander could not just go and waste the entire firepower reserve on nothing).

   Note - BTGs and the BDes themselves are assumed to operate on very wide fronts (something you could gather from our geography and how much forces we have in theatres), thus the 100mm and 120mm systems of separate BTGs sometimes would not be capable of supporting each other in a meaningful way.

Edited by ikalugin

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panzersaurkrautwerfer, on 21 Jan 2015 - 02:30 AM, said:snapback.png

It'd be interesting.  If you're talking about wire/FM networks then okay got it for command systems.  If you're speaking to the sat based or HF networks...maybe you should invest in some more exports?

 

I still fail to understand you :( , would you please clarify your request?

 

He is speaking in "Shorthand".

 

I suspect he means :

Wire, as in telephone wire, land line or something similar.

FM = Frequency Modulation which is anywhere from 76 to 108 MHz, depending on the country.

"sat" = Satellite communications

HF = High Frequency (more likely VHF = Very High Frequency -> "УКВ" (Ультракороткие волны?) up to 300 Mhz

 

I think.

?

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Re: CAS

 

Nothing looks like the AAV from space.  It's huge, looks like a sandcrawler, and next to the Abrams it is the least threat looking vehicle. It really should be the litmus test to see if someone is blind.

 

Either way had the A-10 and FAC been better integrated there would have been less friction.  And you don't read much about Harriers and USMC F/A-18s ripping up friendly forces, so I thinking maybe they're doing something right.  Closer integration of CAS is never the wrong answer, and the USAF is not especially interested, or good at the integration compared to the USMC model.  If they're not interested in doing the CAS mission, then well why not let the Army handle it for itself?  It's not like CAS being an Army mission will cause the USAF to collapse, and the budget provided for CAS platforms ultimately is money that supports Army/Marine assets anyway isn't it?

 

Edit: Hit reply too early.  

 

 

   The other thing is how you allocate fire support assets and who commands them. While the 120mm mortars and the 100mm guns would be allocated to the BTGs, with fire priority to that BTG (which operates semi independently), the long range fires would be primarily prioritised for the use of higher commander. While it may reduce some flexibility (ie a commander who would suddenly ask all guns to fire on his mission would get it denied) at the same time it improves efficiency (as the higher commander could concentrate on the point of decision he has selected, a fear filled commander could not just go and waste the entire firepower reserve on nothing).

   Note - BTGs and the BDes themselves are assumed to operate on very wide fronts (something you could gather from our geography and how much forces we have in theatres), thus the 100mm and 120mm systems of separate BTGs sometimes would not be capable of supporting each other in a meaningful way.

 

 

Again it's not dissimilar to the way the US Army runs it, but the ability of the US Artillery Battalion to rapidly shift left-right in terms of command and control is a force multiplier.  And it does not sound like you have the integrated digital fires network which limits interoperability, and again sounds like you're talking about strictly a radio network at this point, which just simply isn't efficent in terms of multi-echelon fires management.

 

It's the putter as a nine iron thing.  You're making a less efficient system work by putting more force into it.  

 

In terms of definition, yes those are correct.  Broadly speaking FM radios are your average military radios, HF is similar in appearance but you're often looking at near theater level range in transmission/reception given means of transmission.  Wires are field phones or similar, and sat is indeed bouncing stuff off things in splace communications.  

Edited by panzersaurkrautwerfer

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Again it's not dissimilar to the way the US Army runs it, but the ability of the US Artillery Battalion to rapidly shift left-right in terms of command and control is a force multiplier.  And it does not sound like you have the integrated digital fires network which limits interoperability, and again sounds like you're talking about strictly a radio network at this point, which just simply isn't efficent in terms of multi-echelon fires management.

 

 

Artillery battalion could talk to other artillery battalions (if they require assistance when shooting fire missions) or be shifted under the command to another, thus there is no issue there. Normally those battalions would form an Artillery group, under the centralised command, firing at whatever the BDe commander thinks they should be firing. However it is unlikely that it ever will (get call requests from people other than BDe commander or one of the BTGs commanders), because, as I have said, BDes are designed to operate independently for all intents and purposes due to the frontage they are intended to cover.
 
In terms of definition, yes those are correct.  Broadly speaking FM radios are your average military radios, HF is similar in appearance but you're often looking at near theater level range in transmission/reception given means of transmission.  Wires are field phones or similar, and sat is indeed bouncing stuff off things in splace communications.

 

 

Above company you get the whole range (normal digital encrypted radios, wires, satellite, ionosphere reflective, you name it) range of comms. Company and below you get wire I think, but the companies are expected to fight closely as parts of the BTGs and on the move, so primary means of communications are the radios.

 

p.s. basically you have your ad hoc distributed structure that US appears to (historically) favour and a more centralised top to bottom structure Russia appears to (historically) favour. In my opinion the later is better, as it allows to have a better focus on points of decision the higher commander sets and thus higher over all efficiency of the system.

Edited by ikalugin

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p.s. basically you have your ad hoc distributed structure that US appears to (historically) favour and a more centralised top to bottom structure Russia appears to (historically) favour. In my opinion the later is better, as it allows to have a better focus on points of decision the higher commander sets and thus higher over all efficiency of the system.

 

 

The efficiency might be better only when the higher command knows the situation and is able to keep up with the friction and fog of war. However, we could discuss relative merits of each system ad infinitum, as this problem is old as warfare itself.

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Re: CAS

 

Nothing looks like the AAV from space.  It's huge, looks like a sandcrawler, and next to the Abrams it is the least threat looking vehicle. It really should be the litmus test to see if someone is blind.

 

This is what the imagery from an IR Maverick looks like.

 

Everything looks like rectangles.

 

Re: CAS

 

Nothing looks like the AAV from space.  It's huge, looks like a sandcrawler, and next to the Abrams it is the least threat looking vehicle. It really should be the litmus test to see if someone is blind.

 

Either way had the A-10 and FAC been better integrated there would have been less friction.  And you don't read much about Harriers and USMC F/A-18s ripping up friendly forces, so I thinking maybe they're doing something right.  Closer integration of CAS is never the wrong answer, and the USAF is not especially interested, or good at the integration compared to the USMC model.  If they're not interested in doing the CAS mission, then well why not let the Army handle it for itself?  It's not like CAS being an Army mission will cause the USAF to collapse, and the budget provided for CAS platforms ultimately is money that supports Army/Marine assets anyway isn't it?

 

 

As a practical matter, A-10s and USMC fixed-wing operate the exact same via the same inter-service ATO, joint CAS procedures, joint agencies, etc. There was one notable difference -- keyhole CAS -- but that was restricted to one battle, well after the end of conventional fighting in Iraq. The USAF is interested in doing the CAS mission; they've had almost anything that could possibly haul a JDAM doing it, growing their UAV force, making sure everything has ground-compatible radios, putting the new pods (the ones that can transmit their imagery directly to forces on the ground) on everything as the money and maintenance availability comes up, etc. 

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My apologies to all.  I've managed to catch something and it's rather messed with my sleep patterns, so I'm a bit all over the place.  Coherence is a goal, if not an accomplishment right now.

 

 

 

Artillery battalion could talk to other artillery battalions (if they require assistance when shooting fire missions) or be shifted under the command to another, thus there is no issue there. Normally those battalions would form an Artillery group, under the centralised command, firing at whatever the BDe commander thinks they should be firing. However it is unlikely that it ever will (get call requests from people other than BDe commander or one of the BTGs commanders), because, as I have said, BDes are designed to operate independently for all intents and purposes due to the frontage they are intended to cover.

Again, it sounds like you are strictly talking about a control system in terms of radios and voice data.  If required the same fire mission data, like locations targrety, and guidance telemetry can be shared freely across Battalions, Brigades, and military services on the various US systems.  So to that regard if there was a mission that required 36 guns (there are not many targets that would require that with the current CEP on 155 MM), having one target designated by a US unit in contact through a FIST type vehicle (or even shared via a BFT unit) is sufficient for all batteries, battalions, and other fire assets in range to fire on.  

 

With that said, even without the GPS guided rounds you're still talking about first round fire for effect accuracy with all US tube artillery at this point,* so I'm hard pressed to think of a target that would require more guns than 6-12 (again, the kill radius on the various US 155 MM shells is something like 50 M, so when you're talking about the coverage a battery level barrage provides, it's not a small amount of ground being covered, and covered first salvo on target).

 

*Small exception, I know the M777 and M109 equipped units all have the proper systems for semi-precision fires, I'm not sure if the IBCT 105 MM guns have a similar system because I was never near an IBCT, and their role is much less relevant to a conventional shooting war.

 

Re: CAS

 

You're shooting footage from 1991.  The blue on blue we're discussing occurred in 2003 during the day.  Eyeball acquisition, and later model targeting pods were potentially a factor.  Additionally the fact the gun camera footage was "accidentally taped over" sort of builds on the ground to air distrust.  

 

 

 

they've had almost anything that could possibly haul a JDAM doing it,

Because they have to do that to remain relevant.  There's no targets to do any of the other traditional USAF missions.  

 

In terms of practices, the USMC is frankly superior given the cultural mindset, training, and emphasis on the CAS mission.  It's on call, it's synced well to the ground controller, and its focus is on "what can we provide for the ground force?" instead of "what can I do to get back to buying more F-22s?"  The wide gap between customer and service provider is strongly evident in the "B-1 as CAS" example simply because it's one of those "This is what the USAF actually thinks" moments.  The distinction between "I am dropping bombs on bad guys" and "I am dropping bad guys in support of good guys" is something the USAF doesn't appear to make the distinction on. 

 

There's absolutely nothing (nothing) lost by releasing the CAS mission to the Army vs the Air Force.  It's an artificial artifact of the USAF walking off with anything that has guns and wings in 1947, and we would all be better serviced by an Army that has its own CAS and a USAF that's left to focus on distinctly air based/strategic depth style missions.  

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