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how can i learn about land forces?


SDsc0rch
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i've done some cursory searching and.. i'm not coming up with a whole lot

 

so, i'll just put this out there

 

"how can i learn about ground force employment"

 

??

 

and, for extra credit - soviet/FSU land forces employment

 

 

 

i was in the navy so i know surface warfare (asw/aaw/asuw/etcetc) - and some tacair and sub stuff

 

but *zilch* when it comes to how armies are arranged on a battlefield - how they move towards an enemy force - who moves first (and why) - what tasks have to be performed and who does it (recon - support - etc) - how is artillery used - how/where/when is infantry best - what about armor?

 

etc etc etc!

 

 

 

i want to get into CA - in as "realistic" a fashion as possible ------ but i'm really starting flat-footed

 

what kinds of references are available? where can i learn about this??

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That is an incredibly expansive question. Do you mean in the context of setting up a mission or co-ordinating a company or battalion attack? Then you have combined arms tactics with all sorts of different level of organic support and force multipliers.

 

One of the more interesting things I read from the 2008 war was that the classic soviet doctrine of up the guts with armour and shit loads of artillery was highly susceptible to the standard western doctrine of "fix and flank" ( not technically correct for our way of doing things but the effect is very similar) When the Georgians decided to press the engagement. Only lasted so long once the Russians got the reenforcement flow going of course.

 

For stuff at brigade and above, google manouver warfare to get a bit a concept, and certainly there are elements to that approach that filter down to all levels.

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One useful (albeit perhaps a little old school) document is this:

 

http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/army/fm100-2-1.pdf

 

It represents mid 80's thinking on Soviet doctrine, including (most usefully for our purposes) TO&E and the breakdown of the various stages of a standard Soviet style attack.

 

Applicable for pretty much any WARPAC army in the late cold war era, and as dumgrunt hinted, a lot of the tactics in 2008 weren't a million miles away from what was taught in the Soviet army.

 

There have been a couple of fascinating reviews post Georgia, and they are worth looking at:

http://www.cast.ru/eng/?id=386

http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA500627

 

Perhaps a little operational for our purposes, but good for scenario design ideas. The first, "The Tanks of August", is written from a Russian perspective and surprisingly candid.

 

Jamie


Edited by Flying Penguin

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Wikipedia and all the arms documents online are your friends. That's where I learned everything I know. Not as much seems to be written in books these days. For ex. programming books. Try finding a book that explains the inner secrets of Windows. Good luck. They don't seem to exist. Most knowledge nowdays is online in white papers and internet guru forums. Same with small arms and self-propelled AA. :)

 

Just search like crazy using google and favorite everything you find for later raking through.


Edited by Chernaren Refugee
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You could learn this from a more hands on practical approach http://ttp2.dslyecxi.com/. Sounds ridicules but Arma2 is a great simulator this, and its is a way that you can better simulate more realistic ground battles. I don't know if it sounds silly to read it since you already have real experience. I like the way it reads and breaks down. Just my 2 cents.


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  • 2 weeks later...

Gaming and simulations are a good way to go. Online computer games are great, but don't discount the table top strategic games like those produced by Avalon Hill in the peak of table top strategy gaming, either.

 

Learn what works, learn the why it works, jot down questions, study those questions. Study tactics.

 

Narrow your focus: Pick a period, pick a war - concentrate on that. In wars like WWII, maybe even narrow to a specific theater.

 

Study historical battles, study military history, read memoirs of famous commanders ( Achtung – Panzer! by Guderian is still sitting on my "to read" pile), or non famous soldiers who wrote memoirs, etc. If you can find and read actual operational manuals and documents (probably only possible for 19th and early 20th century periods), then seize that opportunity. With WWII and cold war era, you might even be able to find actual training films online; they'll be somewhat propaganda laden, but it's something.

 

From the other side, study the individual units, learn what was effective about "tank X", what were its weak spots, how was it employed, what was its role in an integrated force. Do this for all units in the war/theater of your choice.

 

---------

 

Probably the fastest, and most comprehensive way is to enroll in a military, and demonstrate you have the ability and desire to be a font line officer - but I'm guessing that's a bit more involved than you'd like :D


Edited by Vedexent
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You could learn this from a more hands on practical approach http://ttp2.dslyecxi.com/. Sounds ridicules but Arma2 is a great simulator this, and its is a way that you can better simulate more realistic ground battles. I don't know if it sounds silly to read it since you already have real experience. I like the way it reads and breaks down. Just my 2 cents.

 

Yep, Arma II with the ACE 2 mod running puts some pretty realistic armor values on tanks and apc's. Found out that a .50 caliber round can pierce the old BRDM apc's, they have such light armor.

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since i asked this question, i've found many good pubs online - i found the links posted here to be very helpful (and, if you have additional suggestions - please share! my search/education is by no means over)

 

not just the pubs, but the tank sim Steel Beasts - the Arma game - also YouTube videos - etc

 

just wanted to share one doc i think ppl here might appreciate.. http://goo.gl/D3ctGu

 

EFFECTS OF AIR INTERDICTION ATTACKS ON ADVANCING ARMORED AND MECHANIZED GROUND FORCES

 

(i put in to google.. "how does armor defend against air attack" --- found this doc)

 

there's this quote at the end from Gen Eisenhower

 

Because of hostile domination of the air, travel anywhere in the forward

area was an exciting business. Lookouts kept a keen watch of the skies

and the appearance of any plane was the signal to dismount and scatter.

Occasionally, of course, the plane would turn out to be friendly - but no

one could afford to keep pushing ahead on the chance that this would be

so. All of us became quite expert in identifying planes, but I never saw

anyone so certain of distant identification that he was ready to stake his

chances on it. Truck drivers, engineers, artillerymen, and even the

infantrymen in the forward areas had constantly to be watchful. Their

dislike of the situation was reflected in the constant plaint, "Where is

this bloody Air Force of ours? Why do we see nothing but Heinies?"

When the enemy has air superiority the ground forces never hesitate to

curse the "aviators." General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Supreme Allied

Commander

 

not quite the ground response to air action we currently see in combat simulations huh lol

 

and in aviation based simulations, we fly around and "plink" ground forces with abandon, not too far removed from arcade-game kill ratios

 

i think it would make for an interesting campaign/scenario for blue forces to be heavily outnumbered for quite some time - where the enemy (red/FSU equipped forces) has air supremacy and blue has to operate under those conditions

 

 

another observation, in flight simulators, it seems like we (and i include myself in this) tend to observe the world/battlefield as aircraft-centric

 

and that is understandable - especially in "study sims" that typically focus on one aircraft and your experience is from that airframe/operator's perspective

 

i would propose an adjustment of that thinking to consider ground-force-centric - and perhaps even military/political-objective-centric with air forces a supporting (yet contributing and important) element -- in fact, i would advocate for a "digital combat simulation" that forces (rewards?) the player(s) to operate within such a construct

 

just seems to be a bit more in line with how things are in the real world

 

 

anyway.. interesting

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