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Ricks Napkin Challenge- The Infantry Section and Platoon

Kirkhill

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2 x GPMGs per section was a good option, as I recall, as proven in the Falklands War.

Too heavy for you? Get stronger or get killed ;)


View attachment 70907
Half way through Goose Green the platoons and the companies started brigading their mgs to conserve ammunition and make their fire more effective.

That became standard form in later battles iirc.
 

daftandbarmy

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Half way through Goose Green the platoons and the companies started brigading their mgs to conserve ammunition and make their fire more effective.

That became standard form in later battles iirc.

As well as the MILAN at company level, which was a real battle winner in the 'direct fire against bunker role' apparently.

Phil Neame's just published his book about D Company's fights, which includes some good descriptions.

 

Kirkhill

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1982 Coy OC

OC
2iC
CQ

4 Wpns Dets (5 men each)
4x Browning 7.62 C5 with C2A1 sights
4x M19 60mm with bipod and C2A1 Sights
4x CG84

3 Platoons
3 Platoon HQs

9 Rifle Sections
9 Assault Groups (6x C1)
3 Gun Groups (2xC2 + 1xC1)


Notional Allocation

MG Group - 4x Browning 7.62 C5 with C2A1 sights - 10 men (2 per gun, 1 Gun line, 1 Radio)

Mor Group A - 2x M19 60mm with bipod and C2A1 Sights - 8 men (2 per tube, 1 Gun line, 1 Radio, 2 Ammo) - HE, Smk, Ill
Mor Spotter Group - 2x M19 60mm hand held- 2 men (1 per tube) Smk, Ill, HE

Carl Gustavs allocated to Platoons.

2x Forward Platoons (Anti-Tank)
2x Pl HQ with Mortar Spotter with Handheld M19 for marking targets

2x Forward Sections
1x C2 Gun Groups (ea)
1x CG84 Teams (ea)
C1 Rifles (M72)

1x Depth Section (Reserve)
1x C2 Gun Groups (ea)
C1 Rifles (M72)


1x Depth Platoon (Defence of Mortars and MGs and Reserve)
1x Pl HQ with Mortar Spotter with Handheld M19 for marking targets

3x Depth Section
1x C2 Gun Groups (ea)
C1 Rifles (M72)


Not the only allocation - but one possibility with the tools that were at hand in 1982.

Swap the C1s and C2s for something more current (Section 2iC commanding the Gun Gp a DMR in the same calibre as his Guns)
Swap the C5 for the C6
Swap the C2A2 for a more modern sight, perhaps something compatible with the Carl Gustav like the Aimpoint FCS13RE (if it compatible with the mortars)
Swap the M19 for the M224 (or if you are willing to drop the handheld mode swap the 60mm for a pair of 81mms at the coy)
Swap the CG84 M2 for the CG94 M4 with the full range of ammunition

Add to the modernized M72s, the AT4s and the NLAWs for general distribution among the rifles.


Draw MRAAWs from the Battalion AT Platoon as required.


And speaking of the Battalion

In addition to the AT Platoon and the 81mm Mor Platoon the CO also has on hand a 12 gun SF-MG Platoon - it was just hidden because it was distributed amongst his platoon vehicles.


Edit

  • need to take into account the 40mm Gde launchers now - useful for marking targets and launching pyro so less need for the handheld 60mm
  • also need to take into account the proliferation of UAS systems from 40mm Platoon UAS, through Coy and Bn on up...
 

markppcli

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We still use C2 sights. The value of indirect gomg fire is something I will forever be in doubt of however.


I would rather have 1 GPMG with a loader so it is employed properly as opposed to two guys using a GPMG as an LMG.



Agree. The Minimi tends to make noise, while the GPMG actually provides suppressive effect. I've seen both OA and anecdotal evidence to suggest that the C6 is far more effective than the C9 as a machine gun.



Agreed. I see a support team having a Carl G to pummel an objective with a few rounds to achieve a neutralizing effect. If it can kill a tank (which we saw in Ukraine) if required is just a bonus.


Ack. I've always been a fan of a dedicated grenadier that can either be pushed to support or assault element as required.
So my question is then does every section need it’s 84 and GPMG? Or should they be available but not always employed weapons? If we use that 7 man limit, which I’m in favour of, then we’ve taken 4 for the support side of the section and have three for an assault. I get where you coming from about the numbers on the assault not needing to be quite as big as we think but is that sufficient ?
 

Infanteer

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We still use C2 sights. The value of indirect gomg fire is something I will forever be in doubt of however.

It can have value in a properly sited defence in depth, which the Army doesn't really understand how to do. Forward observers being able to call in a beaten zone from a machine gun 2,500m away can be helpful.

So my question is then does every section need it’s 84 and GPMG? Or should they be available but not always employed weapons?

No, I'd see it as an arms room approach; the Pl and Coy Comds decide on the loadout based on the mission.
 

markppcli

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It can have value in a properly sited defence in depth, which the Army doesn't really understand how to do. Forward observers being able to call in a beaten zone from a machine gun 2,500m away can be helpful.

Doesn’t validate combat teams and it won’t help on Maple Resolve so why bother practicing.

No, I'd see it as an arms room approach; the Pl and Coy Comds decide on the loadout based on the mission.

My only issue with the arms room, conceptually, is where does that room exist? In a mechanized context sure, back of the car / boat / truck is easy. When we come to the light infantry, in a prolonged conflict, I think it becomes a bit harder. Though I suppose you could talk tailor before the deployment.
 

KevinB

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My only issue with the arms room, conceptually, is where does that room exist?
Unit lines for peace time.
In a mechanized context sure, back of the car / boat / truck is easy.

When we come to the light infantry, in a prolonged conflict, I think it becomes a bit harder.
Light Infantry isn’t ideal as a set piece in a prolonged conflict - unless it’s devolved to ‘trench lines’ - then it’s fairly immobile and can be stored in the relevant spot of a trench line.


Though I suppose you could talk tailor before the deployment.
The goal of any arms room is to take the most relevant equipment for the mission.
Some arms room concepts have several different weapons for one member, they can’t bring 4 different carbines on their body clearly - so the most relevant one (or two) for the mission is selected.

Bringing weapons up as @Infanteer mentioned shouldn’t be an onerous task as food, ammunition, water etc needs to be brought up as well.
Some less relevant may be held back at Bn or higher.
 

SeaKingTacco

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We still use C2 sights. The value of indirect gomg fire is something I will forever be in doubt of however.



So my question is then does every section need it’s 84 and GPMG? Or should they be available but not always employed weapons? If we use that 7 man limit, which I’m in favour of, then we’ve taken 4 for the support side of the section and have three for an assault. I get where you coming from about the numbers on the assault not needing to be quite as big as we think but is that sufficient ?
Are you kidding me?

In the defence, the ability to put registered, plunging machine gun fire on to potential assembly areas or into defiles is invaluable.

Has everyone in the Army completely forgotten how machine guns are supposed to be employed?
 

OldSolduer

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Are you kidding me?

In the defence, the ability to put registered, plunging machine gun fire on to potential assembly areas or into defiles is invaluable.

Has everyone in the Army completely forgotten how machine guns are supposed to be employed?
I loved the C6 and .50.

And I think - mind you I’ve been around since velociraptors roamed the earth - those two weapons are under appreciated
 

SeaKingTacco

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The art of machine gunning died with the LAV stabilized turret.
Sigh.

They are complimentary skills. Direct fire, on the move, stabilized shooting is a different tool than SF mounted, GPMGs firing registered fire plans (either direct fire or indirect). Neither are better- but both are neccessary skills.
 

SeaKingTacco

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I loved the C6 and .50.

And I think - mind you I’ve been around since velociraptors roamed the earth - those two weapons are under appreciated
Properly sighted and employed, both the .50 and the GPMG are monster killers on the battlefield. With the armour piercing ammo, a .50 cal could credibly defeat a BMP.
 

KevinB

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The art of machine gunning died with the LAV stabilized turret.
It died before that.
I suspect it’s demise occurred around the end of the MG Platoon in Cbt Spt Coy.

My MG course in Calgary only touched on it lightly - and the firing tables where out of print.

The removal of the MG course and the creation of the PSWQ just nailed the coffin shut.

I recall a lot of stunned faces on a PSWQ (including some staff) when I was showing folks how to use the C2 sight for indirect fire with both Mortar and C6 - it was not in the syllabus….
 

SeaKingTacco

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It died before that.
I suspect it’s demise occurred around the end of the MG Platoon in Cbt Spt Coy.

My MG course in Calgary only touched on it lightly - and the firing tables where out of print.

The removal of the MG course and the creation of the PSWQ just nailed the coffin shut.

I recall a lot of stunned faces on a PSWQ (including some staff) when I was showing folks how to use the C2 sight for indirect fire with both Mortar and C6 - it was not in the syllabus….
It is not really rocket science, if you know how to lay a gun and have the firing tables.
 

OldSolduer

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It died before that.
I suspect it’s demise occurred around the end of the MG Platoon in Cbt Spt Coy.

My MG course in Calgary only touched on it lightly - and the firing tables where out of print.

The removal of the MG course and the creation of the PSWQ just nailed the coffin shut.

I recall a lot of stunned faces on a PSWQ (including some staff) when I was showing folks how to use the C2 sight for indirect fire with both Mortar and C6 - it was not in the syllabus….
So you’re saying there might be a fat consultant fee when the CAF wants to rebuild their MG expertise? 😉
 

markppcli

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The art of machine gunning died with the LAV stabilized turret.

See my above post about validation. It doesn’t meet that so it’s not a priority.
Are you kidding me?

In the defence, the ability to put registered, plunging machine gun fire on to potential assembly areas or into defiles is invaluable.

Has everyone in the Army completely forgotten how machine guns are supposed to be employed?

If I ever see it used successfully in practice I’ll adjust my thinking. For any of it to be effective though I cant imagine single, platoon controlled, guns are really going to achieve the desired effects. If we organized machine gun platoons, maybe I’d see it. Either way probably outside the scope of platoon and section organization.
 

Kirkhill

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What does a Platoon Assault on a defended locality look like these days?
 

KevinB

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What does a Platoon Assault on a defended locality look like these days?
That all depends on what it is, and what your platoon has.

Keep in mind the theory that a Platoon attacks a section sized entity. It doesn’t often work in reality, as the enemy gets a vote.
 
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