Army.ca Forums

Army.ca => Combat Elements => Topic started by: Tango2Bravo on December 08, 2004, 23:31:59

Title: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 08, 2004, 23:31:59
Some of the things that I will discuss here have been touched on in other threads, but I wanted to put some ideas out there for feedback, criticism and a healthy reality check.  I posted similar threads in the now defunct CF forum about a year ago, so forgive me if I repeat some things.

My aim is to propose a force employment model based on current equipment or that which is planned to enter service soon in Canada.  I am proposing that we employ our "mounted" forces (think primarily LAV IIIs and Coyotes) as Cavalry and not as wheeled Battle Group that tries to conduct business as usual with MGS/MMEV substituted for tanks.  I borrow heavily from US doctrine but I have tried to make it suitable for Canada.

My assumptions are that we do not retain out tanks or buy new ones (something that I am admittedly not happy about), that we continue to deploy roughly battalion sized contingents and that we will continue to face a threat spectrum ranging from terrorists/insurgents to organized if outdated conventional forces.  I believe that a force equipped solely with LAVs, Coyotes, LAV TOW and even the MMEV (ADATS) and MGS cannot try to function as a normal "heavy" mechanized battlegroup.  It cannot manoeuvre in the face of the enemy and cannot conduct breaches or mounted assaults against prepared defences without sustaining heavy casualties.  US and UK forces can take hits from enemy anti-tank fire with a much more reduced chance of fatalities than a force with only LAVs.  With the tank gone we must adapt and find a role that we can do with our mounted forces.

The role of this proposed Cavalry Task Force (or Battlegroup etc) would be to provide security for higher level formations.  This would include the obtaining of information regarding the enemy and terrain while denying the same to the enemy.  It could support allied Brigades, Divisions or even Corps.  It could perform economy of force tasks and would be very suitable for stability operations and "peacekeeping."

The Task Force would be centred around a robust Regimental HQ and would include as a minimum a Reconnaissance Squadron equipped with Coyote and a Mechanized Infantry Company equipped with LAV IIIs.  Each of these sub-units would include a LAV TOW Platoon/Troop if the force is deployed to an Area of Operations containing threat armour (virtually anywhere).  The task of the Reconnaissance Squadron would be to answer the questions posed by the supported Commander (usually finding the enemy and assessing terrain) while the task of the Infantry Company would be to enable the Reconnaissance Squadron to complete its task.  Depending on the threat environment an indirect fire battery (guns or mortars) could be added to give integral fire support.  The task of this battery would not be to destroy the enemy but rather to give the Recce Sqn freedom of manoeuvre (and bail it out of tight spots!).  Depending on the size of the supported formation additional Recce Sqns and/or Infantry Companies could be added, but I suggest that a combined total of of four would be the maximum.

The HQ would be based on a Battlegroup Headquarters but would include at a minimum an FSCC (with or without a battery) and a robust ISTAR CC.  I believe that either an Armoured or Infantry HQ could do the job, but I would suggest that an Armoured RHQ would be more suited for supporting a formation and that an Inf HQ would be more suited to assuming an independent AO in a stability operation.  The Task Force would be supported by a CSS subunit that would in turn be supported by the NSE.  An ISTAR Company/Squadron could also be added with Electronic Warfare, Counter Battery Radar and UAVs.  I include UAVs with some trepidation, and these may well belong at a higher level as a independent sub-unit of their own.

In offensive operations covering the advance of a higher formation the Task Force would advance with its Coyotes leading.  The Infantry company(ies) would be used to either neutralize enemy Pl sized security elements as well as clearing out enemy OPs (but not combat team quick attacks).  The indirect fire support battery (if included) would give suppressive fires to allow the Recce and Infantry elements to manoeuvre.  The Task Force would have a two-fold mission of both finding the main enemy defences and also finding and neutralizing enemy security/recce forces.  RHQ would coordinate this while the integral ISTAR CC would collect and analyse the information before passing it back to the supported formation.  The Cavalry Task Force would avoid pitched battle, and would not attempt to breach enemy defences or assault defended positions.  Once the main enemy defences were found (bypass no longer possible) they would be fully described by the Task Force and then handed-off to follow on heavy forces (US or UK).  It could also be used to exploit breakthroughs and gaps in the enemy's defences.

In defensive operations (perhaps a stability or peacekeeping operation gone bad), the Coyotes would identify the enemy's recce and main body forces.  The infantry would destroy the enemy recce and could conduct delay operations (although lacking tanks I would advise against this).  TOW is included in both sub-units to give the Coyotes protection against armoured threats and give the Infantry Companies the ability to destroy enemy tanks (I know that the 25mm is powerful, but let's not count on it to destroy tanks if we do not have too).

EW would have a key role in any operation by both collecting information about the enemy as well as interfering the enemy's ability to pass back information.  Tactical UAVs and CBRs would bring excellent Surveillance and Target Acquisition capabilities, although they also entail logistical problems that may preclude them keeping pace in a mobile battle.

I do not wish to discuss cap badges here, but obviously this Cavalry Task Force would contain many MOCs.  It would not have to be a formed unit (although I would like it to be), but it could be built with formed sub-units.  I have also avoided discussing the Mobile Gun System and MMEVs here, since they are not on line yet and I have doubts about their ability to support a mobile force.  If pressed, I would put an MGS Tp in each Company and keep a MMEV Tp as an RHQ asset (but the air defence capabilities would be hard to integrate/coordinate at this level without a large increase in the size of the HQ.

This proposal (admittedly not radically original by any stretch) would enable Canada to deploy a force capable of fulfilling an important role in support of our coalition partners while not committing our forces to battles they cannot win.  I believe that our days of combat team quick attacks are coming to a close as the tanks disappear and that we need to focus on tasks that we could  successfully accomplish.

Thanks for reading my rather long-winded post and I look forward to having some holes (sabot, bayonet or otherwise) being poked through it!

Cheers

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 08, 2004, 23:53:21
In offensive operations covering the advance of a higher formation the Task Force would advance with its Coyotes leading. The Infantry company(ies) would be used to either neutralize enemy Pl sized security elements as well as clearing out enemy OPs (but not combat team quick attacks). The indirect fire support battery (if included) would give suppressive fires to allow the Recce and Infantry elements to manoeuvre. The Task Force would have a two-fold mission of both finding the main enemy defences and also finding and neutralizing enemy security/recce forces. RHQ would coordinate this while the integral ISTAR CC would collect and analyse the information before passing it back to the supported formation. The Cavalry Task Force would avoid pitched battle, and would not attempt to breach enemy defences or assault defended positions. Once the main enemy defences were found (bypass no longer possible) they would be fully described by the Task Force and then handed-off to follow on heavy forces (US or UK). It could also be used to exploit breakthroughs and gaps in the enemy's defences.

In defensive operations (perhaps a stability or peacekeeping operation gone bad), the Coyotes would identify the enemy's recce and main body forces. The infantry would destroy the enemy recce and could conduct delay operations (although lacking tanks I would advise against this). TOW is included in both sub-units to give the Coyotes protection against armoured threats and give the Infantry Companies the ability to destroy enemy tanks (I know that the 25mm is powerful, but let's not count on it to destroy tanks if we do not have too).

This actually sounds like the idealized BG we are evolving towards, but with the MGS/LAV-TOW and MMEV providing the fire support rather than just the LAV TOW in your vision. I like the rather clean layout of this Cavalry unit, even if it is a composite unit there should not be a lot of "grinding gears" to get things going.

Question (and this is also imported from other threads), would it make a difference if a more effective fire support vehicle or system was added to the mix? I am thinking (for the sake of a simple example) of a hypothetical LAV-HELLFIRE or LAV-BRIMESTONE, DFSV's which can reach out over 8km, fire direct or indirect (Coyotes or Infantry patrols marking the target for the shooter), has an even greater terminal effect than TOW, and can potentially be fired on the move. This would give you the hitting power of a tank, but not the protection or mobility.

My other question is how do you seeing this formation dealing with enemies in complex terrain? Do we simply stay outside and keep them "bottled up" until the heavies arrive; throw in additional Infantry companies to dismount and go get them, or are there other solutions a Cavalry unit could implement?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: DOOG on December 09, 2004, 09:06:34
Greetings 2Bravo..
I like it.
Goes right along with the idea of the "Cavalry Corps".
It also would allow for even more vehiclular flexibility, depending on the task. Down the road MGS, newer more appropriate Recce vehicles and other stuff could be employed as they come on line.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Horse_Soldier on December 09, 2004, 11:08:32
Excellent dissertation.  Glad to see I'm not the only black hat heretic thinking "Cavalry" and living under the threat of exorcism by the MBT crowd.

A little massaging and it would make a good submission to the Canadian Military Journal - think about it.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Lance Wiebe on December 09, 2004, 14:16:18
I agree, excellent dissertation.

I think that the only major problem I have with it is that the Coyotes pretty much suck at recce.   Excellent surveillance platforms, however.   To be decent at reconnaissance, I think that a vehicle would have to be able to get out of where the enemy can monitor and/or kill you.   To stay out of his observation/kill zones, superb cross country mobility is a necessity.  

Yes, I know, route recce may require tracking the route, but the search for the bad guys should be done as much as possible by "sneak", not by being forced to follow the ground the vehicle is capable of crossing.   One reason why the Lynx, despite its low speed, and lack of armour and armament, still made a pretty darn good recce vehicle.   It could go just about anywhere, in any season.

The coyote is a superb vehicle for providing overwatch (in the offense) and detecting the enemy (in the defense).   Maybe each Coyote should be teamed with a patrol or two of Armour Reserve soldiers in the Gelandewagen?   The Gelandewagen isn't great for recce, but is much cheaper and smaller than the Coyote, the Coyote could use its surveillance capabilities to provide the overwatch and direct the patrol(s) into areas the sensors cannot see.   Advance could be done using leapfrog, one Coyote handing over its duties to another, who would take over direction of the patrols.

Heck, I dunno.   If I was King of Canada, we'd have the Weisel for the Reserves to do recce in, not the Gelandewagen.   But we'll never get them, their tracked.  

Speaking of which, I wonder when we'll have to park all of the snowmobiles and trade them in for ATV's?   Tracks are bad.......
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 09, 2004, 14:29:32
The ONT R got in trouble for using ATV's; thinking outside of the box is bad....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Fishbone Jones on December 09, 2004, 15:26:41
The ONT R got in trouble for using ATV's; thinking outside of the box is bad....

The Ont R ATV thing is a sanctioned trial, under the auspices of DND. Last year was the mobility and serviceabilty trials and this year they're supposed to be developing tactics and doctrine from the last I heard, while working with them this summer. I'm sure one of the Ont R's here can fill in or correct.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 09, 2004, 17:39:02
Thanks to all who have responded so far (I think I recognize some people from the old CF board)!

The issue of Coyote and its suitability for Recce is a good one (is there a separate thread for that?).  While admittedly my background is tank, I do believe that the Coyote is a good recce platform.  I grant that it is large and noisy, but it does have excellent optics (both in the turret and the surveillance suite) and good firepower and protection for a recce vehicle.  The whole wheels thing is an issue, and this is partly why I think that the days of combat team advances etc are over.  All this being said, my focus is on the role and organization, and a different recce vehicle could be substituted for the Coyote as long as it retained the optics (in my opinion).  Likewise, the Infantry Companies in the Cavalry Task Force (or BG) could be mounted on any vehicle as long as it had some protection and mobility.  I guess what I am saying is that you can substitute different vehicles as long as the Armoured Cavalry Task Force is a mixture of Recce and Inf with (hopefully) some integral fire support.  Once again, however, the aim of the Armoured Cavalry is go obtain information for the commander while denying the same to the enemy.  I believe that the Coyote and LAV III are suited to this task, but I agree that there are limitations for both vehicles.

A Majoor,

Even with the addition of 8 km missiles linked to the sensors in the Coyotes I would still be reluctant to try to fight against the enemy's main defensive area.  To be able to maneouvre in the face of the enemy (a requisite for fighting the close battle), our force must have protection.  A tank is not simply a big gun but rather a combat system that can manouevre in the face of the enemy and win due to its protection, mobility and firepower.  All three must exist in a system if we are to be able to fight the mounted close fight.  A force with M1s and Challengers can take a few hits (which will be inevitable) while my Armoured Cavarly would not.  The TOW imbedded in the Recce Sqns and LAV Companies are there to give the ability to take out enemy recce vehicles at long range as well as giving the force some protection against a determined enemy armoured thrust.  Longer range missiles would be welcome, of course, as long as they were on mobile platforms and did not need clearance from higher to employ.

Regarding complex terrain (such as cities), the Armoured Cavalry would definately face some constraints.  In a conventional war setting (such as OIF from Feb to Apr 04) this force could operate in towns and cities but the pace would probably slow down.  Keeping with the Cavarly role, the main battle would be accomplished by follow-on forces.  I do not see this force clearing the enemy house by house and block by block.  The infantry component would give it some enhanced urban capabilities, and that is one reason why I want the Recce Sqns backed up by Infantry Companies.  The Armoured Cavalry could advance into an urban area to identify either the main defensive line or at least the main "pockets", but once again follow-on forces would conduct the main battle based on the information gained by the Cavalry.



In an attempt to illustrate this idea, I will lay out a little scenario.  Our Armoured Cavalry Task Force is supporting a UK Armoured Brigade against a second world army and the Brigade is advancing.  It consists of a Rece Sqn, a LAV Infantry company, an FSCC and several FOO parties, and an EW Troop.  The Coyotes lead and come across an enemy security detachment consisting of two BRDMs.  The option would exist to bring up the integral TOW Tp from the Sqn or the Infantry Company could come forward to destroy the OP with their TOW and then sweep the position with a LAV Platoon.  The advance continues until the Recce Tps detect a platoon of BMPs and a T55 moving down a road in response the last report from the destroyed enemy OP.  The integral Sqn TOW react to destroy the platoon while the Infantry Company moves up to block if that fails.  The Coyotes then detect a platoon sized defensive position that dominates the main avenue of approach.  The Infantry Company destroys the Platoon after the vehicles are destroyed by either long range direct fires or precison fire support (problably from higher but coordinated through the Task Force FSCC and directed by integral FOO/FACs.  The Coyotes then resume the recce until they detect company sized position that appears to be part of a main defensive line.  The Coyotes attempt to gain eyes on across the frontage (perhaps using the Surveillane Suites) while the ISTAR CC processes and passes back this information.  TUAVs if deployed could be employed to see the depth of the position.  The infantry would be prepared to act as guides for the oncoming UK main elements who would breach the position (if indeed there was no viable bypass).  The enemy commander has been blinded by the actions of Armoured Cavalry destroying his screen (along with EW) and is unaware of the main attack until it has already happened.  This is a hasty example, but hopefully serves as a guide to how I envision the employment of this force.

Thanks again to all for the feedback so far and I welcome other ideas/suggestions!

Cheers,

2B

p.s. I have not included Engineers as I not envision us breaching.  I think, however, that at least a Tp should be included.  I do not want to make the force bigger, but perhaps it has too be.  The Engineer Tp could be an RHQ controlled asset used to give the force enough mobility to overcome simple obstacles as well as conducting engineer recce.  Thoughts?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Recce41 on December 09, 2004, 20:22:59
A lil off but as a fella Dragoon, 2Bravo. WHO ARE YOU? Email me. 
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 09, 2004, 21:05:28
Since we are losing the tanks, we need to think of a way to do business without them. I am suggesting a "bigger/better" weapons system that TOW, but still acceptable to our political masters (it has wheels, after all), might give a Cavalry formation a few more options. Granted, a direct assault on a position is not going to be possible except in the most desperate of circumstances, but maybe LAV-HELLFIRE/LAV- BRIMESTONE could allow the force commander to "snipe" the enemy, or force a passage by fire if the enemy isn't set up or concentrated?

Quote
The Coyotes lead and come across an enemy security detachment consisting of two BRDMs.  The option would exist to bring up the integral TOW Tp from the Sqn or the Infantry Company could come forward to destroy the OP with their TOW and then sweep the position with a LAV Platoon.  The advance continues until the Recce Tps detect a platoon of BMPs and a T55 moving down a road in response the last report from the destroyed enemy OP.  The integral Sqn TOW react to destroy the platoon while the Infantry Company moves up to block if that fails.  The Coyotes then detect a platoon sized defensive position that dominates the main avenue of approach.  The Infantry Company destroys the Platoon after the vehicles are destroyed by either long range direct fires or precison fire support (problably from higher but coordinated through the Task Force FSCC and directed by integral FOO/FACs.


The same scenario can be completed more quickly with integral assets, allowing the recce elements to move farther ahead and giving the formation commander more time to formulate his plan and make his moves.

Just some considerations
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: 12alfa on December 10, 2004, 00:37:21
The Coyotes lead and come across an enemy security detachment consisting of two BRDMs.  The option would exist to bring up the integral TOW Tp from the Sqn or the Infantry Company could come forward to destroy the OP with their TOW and then sweep the position with a LAV Platoon.  The advance continues until the Recce Tps detect a platoon of BMPs and a T55 moving down a road in response the last report from the destroyed enemy OP.


This leads me to belive we are fighting the commie's again Not going to happen, look at what is now happening. Coyote moves down road, ied triggered, no more coyote, Next ptl moves forward to find out what happened, Lets say for a good example a MGS, rpg fired from hidden positions, no more MGS. Call in a g-wagon, a 14.5 mg opens up from a cam'ed position, no more G-wagon.

Does this sound more real?

The commie's stopped playing, we need to get over it.
Even the US has stopped the cold war missions, they are into what they find now, and it ain't no security sec followed by the main force or what ever.

Did they use hummers, lav's in Faluga? Don't see it anywhere, they used ARMOUR, ie tanks and uparmoured Brads! Maybe they know something we don't?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 10, 2004, 01:03:57
Such a scenario could have happened in Former Yugoslavia, so I would not discount it totally.

Quote
Coyote moves down road, ied triggered, no more coyote, Next ptl moves forward to find out what happened, Lets say for a good example a MGS, rpg fired from hidden positions, no more MGS. Call in a g-wagon, a 14.5 mg opens up from a cam'ed position, no more G-wagon.

Counter example: G Wagon moves forward to investigate suspicious contact from Coyote, gets whacked by IED. Coyote moves up to cover the extraction of surviving crewmen, but has cued a LAV-BRIMESTONE standing back 5km. RPG and HMG positions unmask to get a shot at the Coyote (which is standing far enough back to use its cannon to cover the G-Wagon), LAV-BRIMESTONE launches a two missile "ripple" volley which arrive on target in under a minute. The Coyote is disabled by the HMG (such is life), but the seeker heads on the BRIMESTONES have identified the targets and lock on, destroying them. The Cavalry commander orders the LAV-BRIMESTONE to maintain coverage on the area, while sending a mounted infantry element forward to extract the two crews, and do a dismounted sweep of the area.

We will have to adjust our tactics and doctrine to make best use of what we've got. Calling the unit Cavalry might be sending the wrong signal, though. I can visualize a US Cavalry unit from the "Indian wars" patiently tracking across miles of prarie, and using its mounted mobility to get into a firing position (or a CMR squadron roaming the veldt doing the same thing), but Cavalry connotates the dashing charge with lances or sabres flashing in the sun...
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 10, 2004, 01:42:56
"Dashing" is the key.  Horse-mounted Cavalry had to change their roles as defined by the enemy approach to fighting demanded.  A foe with a rapid-firing rifle with a minnie-ball ammunition would wipe out a cavalry charge.  So what did the Cav do, they turned into a screening and flanking force.

I think the word has the perfect connotations for what 2Alpha has proposed.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 10, 2004, 01:54:15
Thanks again to all for the feedback.   Keeping in mind the proposed role of the Armoured Cavalry, I am interested in your comments on the following:

    a.    should there always be integral fire support (guns and mortars) in the Task Force?

    b.    should there be integral engineers and if so at what level?

    c.    should the sub-units be pure recce and pure LAV infantry or have each sub-unit be a mixture of both?

A Majoor,

Stangely enough I kind of have the old school US Cavalry and the Canadian Mounted Rifles in mind.  They were at there best when operating as scouts and covering larger forces, and not when charging with sabres flashing etc.  I see this force a bit like Buford's bunch.  It does not fight the main action but does cover the deployment of the main body (boy, I'm really slipping back here).  I attended the US Army's Cavalry Leader's Course at Fort Knox as a young Lt and perhaps I was warped by the experience.  At the time they had two forces; one with M1s and M2s and the other with HUMMVWs.  They were a bit envious of the Coyote and several were proposing an organization based on the Coyote instead of the HMMVW (but not as a replacement of the Heavy version).

I would like to make the Recce Sqn as self-contained as possible without ballooning its size.   I'm not sure if this is what you were talking about (two mixed sub-units instead of two "pure" sub-units).   Again, I see the Recce Sqn as peforming the lion share of the Sense funtion, with the Infantry company in support to facilitate that (Act, but only in support of Sense).   I would envision, however, all direct fire assets being integral to the Armoured Cavalry Task Force.   What could come from outside would be the fire support (artillery, PGMs etc).   Integral fire support would be very useful in high intensity operations and this is standard in US Cavalry organizations.   While the Army seems to pinning its hopes on the MMEV (the mutated son of ADATS), I am not so sure that we can achieve the 8 km shots so often quoted.   I doubt that terrain will always allow this.   No doubt the ADATS folks on the board will jump on me, but I hate to have our tactics based on its ability to kill all the enemy armour from standoff range.   I also like dealing in the realm of the probable, so I am sticking with TOW for the moment.   

p.s. How's it going?   I think the last time we talked was in Meaford three summers ago.  If you're not the A Majoor I had in mind please forgive me!

12A,

Believe me when I say that I am a tanker (although all I have now is an LSVW).   I agree completely that heavy armour is needed to go in and destroy the enemy in most situations.   That is why I am advocating that we move to a Cavalry role.   This means that we will not be going in to destroy the enemy.

My scenario did have a certain cold war feel to it, but it is based on operations such as the initial moves into Iraq and potential hostilities in peace support/ stability operations gone very sour.   The worst case scenario for my Armoured Cavalry would be to go into a heavily defended city with the task of clearing it out and I honestly don't believe that it would be used in such a manner.   This may seem like I am selling out, but I only trying to be realistic and devise organizations and tasks that fit our means.   The Army seems intent on maintaining that we can continue to conduct the mounted close battle with tanks replaced by wonder weapons that are not tanks, but I believe that this is not so.   If we are not going to have tanks we should realize that our Army has changed fundamentally (at least the mounted part) and that we should adapt accordingly.

Please note that I do not like the idea of using G-Wagons for recce.   I want all the mounted scouts behind armour, even if that means that they are in a big vehicle.   While I never had to test it for real, the Coyote and LAV do offer protection against IEDs (although IEDs have been employed in urban environments that can even destroy tanks).   I might agree to a VBL style vehicle if it had similar sensors as found on the Coyote.   I am not a fan of he Stryker MGS, although I must admit that I have not been on it.   My wife does say that I am stubborn (must be the Scots in me).

I guess what I am trying to say is that I agree with you, but I am trying to find a way to adapt to an Army without tanks.

Recce41,

I will try to send you a message once I figure out how to do it!   I'm in HQ Sqn at the Regt right now.   My previous two years were in Recce Sqn (aka ISTAR Company) and B Sqn (where I went to Wainwright with a tank and came home with an LSVW).   Before that I was in Meaford for three years and my Troop Leading time was also in B Sqn (97-99).   I was in the 1st Hussars during and after school before transferring to the Regular Force.   My MPRR is a bit of a mess!   My hands-on recce experience is pretty thin (I commanded an Iltis Recce Tp for a MILCON but that is about it), and as such I am very interested in having the details of the Recce Tp hammered out by others.

Bold and Swift!

p.s. My apologies to all for rambling so long.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Nerf herder on December 10, 2004, 09:04:19
I know who he is.....and isn't he supposed to be in the field right now?   ;)

Regards
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2004, 09:29:01
I know who he is.....and isn't he supposed to be in the field right now? ;)

Regards

Sounds familiar....Franko.  What were you doing a few months back?

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2004, 09:57:07
Back on subject.  I have to side with Lance in the opinion that the Coyote is not a Recce Vehicle and had written a letter in the Armour Bulletin years ago prior to its' purchase denouncing it as a replacement for the Lynx.  It is a good Surveillance Vehicle, but not a good Recce Vehicle.  It is too big, too noisy, and lacks good cross country mobility in all terrain.  I'd almost say we should take a step backwards and invest in newer models of the Ferret or its' bigger brother the Fox.  The only large vehicle, similar to a Coyote/LAV III that I would accept for Recce would be the German Luchs, but it is fairly dated now.  We have discussed the flexibility of a vehicle like the German Wiesel, but unfortunately it is "Tracked" and not PC in our "new Army".

On the subject of Urban Areas.  I would hesitate to say that a Recce Sqn in an advance would most likely bypass any Built up area with a population of over 1,000.  I would advocate an Infantry Coy per Sqn in your Cav Org, but also include an Engr Tp per Sqn (not per Reg't). 

From previous experience with US Scouts and ITVs, I have found that they like to shoot at the first thing they see and not observe and report.  Too aggressive for our style of Sneak and Peek.  We have to remember that our Recce resources are our eyes and ears and good Comms.  We are not fighting for info, unless in self-defence.  Our best weapon is our radio and Golf C/S's.  The life expectancy of a Recce soldier crossing the Start Line in combat is approx seven seconds.

As we become more dependant on 'High Tech' we land up loosing some of our more basic skills, may come back to haunt us with the first EM burst. 

I am an advocate of the Seven Car Troop and believe it to be the smallest effective size of a Recce Troop.  60 would of course be a large organization as it is also D&S for RHQ. Types of vehicles have been debated in other threads. 

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 10, 2004, 13:48:37
Franko,

Busted.  As an Observer/Controller for the exercise, however, I have a certain amount of flexibility. ;)  Have a great weekend and you guys deserve it!

George,

Your points are taken on the limitations of the Coyote, but I'd like to avoid a Coyote vs Lynx/Wiesel debate within this thread.  I would say, however, that the US Scouts are not quite as "shooty" as we make them out to be.  They do use sneak and peek with the HMMVWs and M3s (although perhaps not to our extent).  What I like about their scouts is that every vehicle has two Scouts in the back who can dismount.  There vehicle remains able to function fully while the dismounted Scouts (who are Cavalrymen) check out the woodline or blind corner.  Still, I echo your comments that we must possess "basic" skills in addition to our more high tech gadgets.

Cheers and have a good weekend.

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 10, 2004, 15:11:56
For the recce arm of the Cavalry (and I am thinking in terms of a composite battlegroup doing the Cavalry role), the squadron should be mad up of at least one troop of surveillance vehicles (Coyotes today), and at least two troops of smaller mounted scouts, along with an assault troop for local protection. This would be somewhat bigger than a recce squadron today, but not really unwieldy.

I have discussed this at some length with local armoured officers, and the "ideal" troop we evolved would actually consist of 10 cars (VBL, MOWAG EAGLE or Fennick sized) arranged in 3X3car patrols, plus a troop leader's car. One car would be a dismount vehicle, carrying the scouts, one would be a support car with an HMG and AGL to break contact, and one would have a very small sensor suite. The sensor car belongs to the patrol commander, who can scan the local area and guide the dismounted patrol to examine areas of  interest. The support car would stand watch over the scouts and surveillance cars. There are lots of permutations and variations possible; if the Cavalry is equipped with long range firepower like the LAV-BRIMESTONE, then two cars could be devoted to dismounts and the sensor car can cue the weapons platform.

In the larger Cavalry formation, there are several ways to arrange things, either having combat teams made from several units and branches, or evolving composite units with a mix of mounted and dismounted assets. As long the command and control is arranged to minimize friction, this should be all right.

Engineers I would hold as a centralized asset for the Cavalry formation commander to employ according to the situation. He might just have the Cavalry screen one area while he devotes the bulk of the engineer resources in a different direction, according to the situation. Same goes for long range IF assets.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 10, 2004, 15:51:30
Just to clarify something here, when a_majoor talks about the Hellfire and Brimstone LAV as an MMEV he is effectively not describing the Direct Fire MMEV as described in CF literature that derives from the ADATS system.  He is instead describing an INDIRECT Fire Support system with Area, Precision and Direct Fire Capabilities.

McG put up an image of such a Notional MMEV some time back.  It was armed not just with the ADATs missile but also with Hellfire/Brimstone missiles as well as pods of 70mm Artillery Rockets.

Hellfire and its Brimstone variants can be fired directly at a line-of-sight target, indirectly in volley and laser designated or self-designated.  The 70mm can be fired directly, indirectly against area targets or equipped with bolt-on guidance packages and be precision guided by laser designation.

It is not so much a traditional armoured asset as it is an arty asset.  A troop could function with respect to a LAV Sqn/Regt much as the Mortar Platoon and TUA Platoons functioned for the Mech Inf Battalion.  Depth fire on-hand with the added benefit of precision targeting of weapons capable of defeating all known mobile battlefield threats and many fixed threats (like bunkers).

For what its worth......

Cheers.


Sorry to steal your thunder a_majoor.  Interested to see where this thread heads.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2004, 16:57:26
Quote
It is not so much a traditional armoured asset as it is an arty asset.   A troop could function with respect to a LAV Sqn/Regt much as the Mortar Platoon and TUA Platoons functioned for the Mech Inf Battalion.   Depth fire on-hand with the added benefit of precision targeting of weapons capable of defeating all known mobile battlefield threats and many fixed threats (like bunkers).

This really isn't true.  In WW II the RCD (1st Armoured Car Regiment) did in fact have indirect fire capabilities.  In thier Support Sqn they had 75 mm Howitzers mounted in M3 White Halftracks.  This resourse was lost after the war, probably due to the same reasons as today, Budget cuts and downsizing.  It is comparable to saying that Mortars are an Arty asset, not an Infantry one.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 10, 2004, 17:03:55
Sorry George I had forgotten about those.  Another relative of mine served in Dingos with the Blues and Royals in those days.  He would not be best pleased at me forgetting that.

You are right.  I guess what I was meaning to suggest, using today's buzz words of effects and capabilities that the mortars supplied the infantry commander an "arty-type" indirect fire capability.  Likewise the Half-track 75 in the Support Troop supplied the recce commander a similar capability.  Just as the Assault Troop supplied him with an "Infantry-type" capability.

Thanks for clearing up the confusion.

Cheers.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 11, 2004, 00:25:39
Well, I thought I'd bring back my little analogy on "force density" and capabilities - which I liked to the rock-paper-scissors game:

A medium force (the scissor) can effectively control an area with a smaller footprint then its heavier brethren.   It is light, mobile, and contains the necessary equipment and doctrine to allow it to overpower any ragtag, second rate militias and the like (paper).   However, a medium force would dash itself to pieces against a heavy force (rock) which possesses far greater tactical maneuverability, firepower, and survivability.

A heavy force (the rock) is the powerhouse formation that is can destroy the enemy in direct combat.   It is more then a match for most other forms of enemies (scissors) and yet, heavy forces can find themselves rendered helpless if they are not careful when confronting asymmetrical, irregular forces (paper).

Light forces (paper) attempt to maintain the three central aspects of tactical maneuverability, firepower, and survivability through a variety of other means such as diffusion, use of adverse terrain, and application of small-scale hit and run tactics to avoid enemy concentrations of power (rock).   However, they must be careful to not become fixed and engaged by a foe, especially one with any sort of armoured assets (scissors), as this deprives them of their main forms of tactical and operational advantages and allows the enemy to use their "light" nature against them.


Now, the reason I am biting at 2Alpha's Cavalry concept is that it is a perfect husbanding of resources at the "Scissor" level.   Ideally, this force would be complimented by a Heavy Force (Rock) - perhaps as defined in the "Ideal Tank Concept" thread (I really dig a Canadian version of the CV) - while the Light Force (Paper) can be covered by the evolving Light Infantry Doctrine.

----


As well, 2Bravo, do you think that Tac Hel can be included in the concept.   If it were to be based upon the Griffon, do you think that the constraints of the Griffon in a Cavalry role would not make the added footprint of Tac Hel maintenance worthwhile for such a formation?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Recce41 on December 11, 2004, 08:43:14
Well Fellas
 2Bravo. Just email me through my civie email (Recce41@aol.com). I believe I know who you are?
 But as one of the Recce SMEs here at the school, heres the brake down as of now. We are using the old way of Recce. RAPZ and OPs. If it works DON"T CHANGE. Yes the Coyote is a big veh, but Recce is not platform dependent. The way iit will/would. Is that the LVSW would do the sneak and peak stuff. The Coyote would follow up. Depending on who/what and where the Coyote patrol could be tasked to confirm it. Call in Air/Arty, never never commit a Combat team if you don't have to.
 From there Regt Recce may follow up and secure LDs, FBs, picket the contact, if requied. The CB team should only be deployed if a large force, is evident. We don't have the equipment to Bash on though. Cav was tryed in 98 and it sucked. C Sqn RCD. People complain about the Coyote but we used Cougars for recce from 92-now. It did worked, but was limited. If we just keep a full Recce Sqn we would not have to change.
A Recce Sqn had Scout troops, Anti Amr, Engs (AssTp), and Arty 60-80mm mortor.
 
 The CAV concept is from having all those Generals that are down in Hood.  :evil: :tank:
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 11, 2004, 09:55:16
Infanteer,

Tactical helicopters would definately help an Armoured Cavalry Task Force, but you hit the nail on the head by mentioning the maintenance footprint.  Something like the OH58D would be outstanding.  US Divsional Cavalry Squadrons (battalion sized) have two Troops (eight ships each) of Kiowas Warriors.  That being said, I'm not sure if our aviation is really suitable for that role with their current equipment.  Certainly something to strive towards (although would the force have both TUAVs (tactical unammared aerial vehicles) and helicopters?  I worry that this little agile force might start to get too big.

Recce41,

I'm not fixed on platform, although I am a believer in Coyote as a Recce vehicle.  Perhaps I should clarify my vision for the Recce Squadron that is in the Armoured Cavalry Task Force.  It is a three Troop Coyote Squadron that conducts OPs and RAPZ as normal except that I have added at LAV TOW Tp.  The LAV Infantry Company following up is not really a combat team that engages the main enemy, but rather like a huge Assault Troop that can assist the Recce Squadron in getting on with its mission when confronted by enemy security elements. If all goes well the Recce Tps will not fire a shot of 25mm.

As an aside, is there a thread here on the 8 car Tp?  I'm interested in your perspective on that one.  We are getting bits and pieces but no firm details yet (perhaps when our current DP3A guys get back).

I am not a fan of jeep recce, as it works great in peacetime but would not work so great when bullets are flying (in my opinion).   I have heard that the Cavalry Squadrons tried out a couple of years ago were not a success (I was in Meaford at the time, so I have no first hand experience).  My Cavalry Task Force is a bit different as it is the combination of a Recce Squadron with an Infantry Company under a robust RHQ.  You are on track with the Fort Hood bit, and I will sheepishly admit that many of my ideas were formed while in Fort Knox!  Maybe I just want to wear the hat!

Kirkhill/ A Majoor,

I would support the introduction of long range missiles as long as it does not mean that the Armoured Cavalry is now expected to fight "the main event."  The role of this force is to get information and stop the enemy getting the same. 

I've being thinking about the urban piece and can grudgingly see a role for the MGS in those environments.  The MGS could have certain advantages over missiles in that environment (no minimum range and much better explosive effect on buildings), although I am worried about its vulnerability to RPGs etc.  If it was brought up after the enemy was defined and with a close escort of infantry it could have role to play.  All this being said, I would include an MGS Tp in the LAV Company along with LAV TOW.  This would still not make the Company a Combat Team, however, and its role would still be confined to collapsing the enemy's security screen in offensive operations and destroying enemy recce identified by the Recce Squadron in defensive operations.

All,

I've been thinking about the engineers and I now believe that a Sqn would certainly be required for the "three block war" that the Armoured Cavalry might be deployed to.  I'm going to "suck back" a little here and rethink the structure to try and keep the span of control reasonable for the CO.  More to follow...

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 11, 2004, 16:11:18
Quote
I would support the introduction of long range missiles as long as it does not mean that the Armoured Cavalry is now expected to fight "the main event."  The role of this force is to get information and stop the enemy getting the same.

Personally that is the reason I am in favour of the system, especially the Brimstone missile.  The Brimstone uses a similar Microwave Radar Sensor and Algorithm to the Swedish Stryx 120mm mortar round.  Once launched over the target area it searches the ground, locates targets, identifies them by comparing to "pictures" of friendly and enemy forces then attacks.  All autonomously.

This means that a recce element on discovering a target need not do anything but burst a fire order and grid to the launch point and have the requisite number of missiles on the way.  It need never disclose its position, not even with a laser designator, never move and maintain "eyes on". 

Quote
I've being thinking about the urban piece and can grudgingly see a role for the MGS in those environments.  The MGS could have certain advantages over missiles in that environment (no minimum range and much better explosive effect on buildings), although I am worried about its vulnerability to RPGs etc.  If it was brought up after the enemy was defined and with a close escort of infantry it could have role to play.  All this being said, I would include an MGS Tp in the LAV Company along with LAV TOW.  This would still not make the Company a Combat Team, however, and its role would still be confined to collapsing the enemy's security screen in offensive operations and destroying enemy recce identified by the Recce Squadron in defensive operations.

My sense from seeing some videos of Fallujah, Baghdad and Basra is that in Urban warfare in Iraq the Tank has been used less to back up assaults on individual buildings than it has been used to rush in, grab a commanding position on a main route with reasonable lines of site and thus carve the area under assault into isolated sectors.  They then dominate the "cut-line", usually a highway by fire to prevent insurgents entering or leaving the sector.  Redeployable pill boxes etc.  There is very little footage, none that I have seen, and little documentary evidence of Tanks doing the Stalingrad thing of pushing over walls and poking their guns through. 

While the issue of Armour protection is always critical, it appears that the Slat Armour is making the Stryker troops happy.  I posted on another thread yesterday, (already forgotten where - too many related threads)  a link to an article where a Stryker Brigade commander said that something like 50% of his vehicles had been "tagged" by RPGs and IEDs but that vehicle availability was always over 90% and that IIRC nobody had died while under armour. 

Having said that, I see your position and can agree that a Light Armoured unit is not ideal for urban warfare and it would be a waste of a good recce capability.  On the other hand it would be unwise to simply right off a Light Armoured mech team as having no value in the urban fight.

Perhaps in true Canadian fashion I should say, urban if necessary but not necessarily urban. ;D :salute:

By the way I think that the MMEV could also contribute to the urban fight.  Anything that can deliver a 20lb shaped charge to a target of my choice, on target on time without me having to carry it, and with lots more where that came from would seem to me to be a good thing.

Fly the package in on 30 secs notice rather than having to carry it in on my back or drive it in under armour.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 11, 2004, 16:33:29
http://www.news-miner.com/Stories/0,1413,113~7244~2588955,00.html

Here is the link to the LAV and its survivability.   Official US army position.   Take it for what its worth.

Quote
Lt. Colonel Gordy Flowers, commander of the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Infantry Regiment, said more than 50 percent of his Strykers were tagged by roadside or car bombs or hit with rocket-propelled grenades.

No soldiers in his battalion were killed in such attacks, Flowers said.

My comments on >90% availability of equipment came from a number of other open sources.

Some other interesting quotes from the article

On Employment

Quote
The Strykers not only delivered his soldiers to the edge of the battlefield, but gave them up-to-date information on the location of the enemy, giving his troops the ability to strike decisively


On Mobility

Quote
The vehicles also have a tendency to get bogged down in mud. Santos said tire pressure had to be increased to handle the increased weight from the armor.

"We have tires that are over-inflated," he said. "We're trying to lighten the system."

Quote
"It's fast, it's quiet and it tracks incredibly well on the snow," said Col. Michael Shields, commander of the 172nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Fort Wainwright. "Soldiers have total confidence in the weapon system. It's incredibly accurate and lethal. It works very well in the Arctic environment."


This unit has also had previous experience with the Bv206 I believe.   I remember seeing a compound full of them at an armoury in Anchorage.

By the way Alaskan snow isn't like New Brunswick snow.  It is more like Prairie snow, sparse, packed and dry.  Not deep, soft, HEAVY and WET - Lord how I remember HEAVY and WET.

Gagetown, it must be the only place in the world where the swamps are on top of the ruddy hills.



On Tanks vs Light Armour.

Quote
"If you want to destroy everything in an urban environment, completely level it, then the M1 tank would be the perfect suited weapon or system," said Lt. Col. Karl Reed, battalion commander with the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, which returned to Fort Lewis in October after spending a year deployed to Iraq. "This particular war is about balance. This particular war is about insurgents that mix with friendly forces and I think the precision is what's necessary in order to win this type of conflict and the Stryker gives you that."

Cheers.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Recce41 on December 11, 2004, 16:54:24
2B
 The idea of 8 cars would be setup like this. 3x scout ptls, 1 UAV/Anti Armr ptl. The tpie would have the UAV, the Snr Sgt would own the the other. A Lav Coy would be over kill. A fully manned 54 pers assault tp would work. 90% of my time was Recce and I like mud recce when required. It is the most versitile type you can have. Its fast, mobile, easy to hide, and damn right fun. The problem I find is soldiers coming on the DP3CC and DP3 TpWO depend on that damn Surv gear. Well thats just me and a few of us from the Recce Tp. We wrote the SOPs and TTPs. And they seem to cover all.
 Hope to be back next yr. I believe we at the school can bring back ideas. For our ideas are not from just us but from 12 RBC and LdSH also.

 E mail me. Would like to get so new from the Regt.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 11, 2004, 17:11:25
LAV-BRIMESTONE is a hypothetical way of getting around a lot of the problems with the current "troika" fire support concept without getting into science fiction or impossible (for financial or political reasons) ideas. If it takes the place of LAV-TOW in this Cavalry concept, it provides a balance of direct and indirect firepower, with the balance leaning towards indirect fire cues by the forward elements. I would not really characterize it as Artillery, even though it could serve in that role.

I think in this context a mounted Infantry Coy would give the commander more options than an Assault Troop, which is really a platoon of Black Hat Infantry. Given the size of the AO the Coyotes can cover, a lot of boots will be needed on the ground to investigate, cover, clear and piquet all the things which will be turned up. A single assault troop would be running around like mad to do all the jobs.

MGS might have some utility in the close battle, but in its current form I would suggest leaving it attached to Infantry units as their bunker busters. (I would actually suggest not having it at all). In Urban OPs, the LAV BRIMESTONES would provide "virtual" thunder runs by electronically laying on an area to be cut off, rather than physically sitting at an intersection. This might not have the same effect on morale initially, but 20Kg warheads taking out strong points do have a certain effect on people as well.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Recce41 on December 11, 2004, 18:47:01
a-m
 Assault troop is more than Inf, they are Engs, Arty also. When I was in Dog Troop. We had more than most Inf Companies. We did Bridge Recces, Ambushes, Counter Recce, Demo/Mine tasks, Mortor support even though it was just a 60. We would get the 80 if need be.
 That is a true Assault Troop. Not just a Inf Ptl.
 A true Assault Troop would have between 50-60+ pers alone. a HQ Section, 5 complete sections of M113s+Doser/Grizzlies/E Lavs, 2 x HLVWs full of Mines and Demo store, a LSVW and MLVW as the Adm sec.
 It was the best troop to be in next to Jump Troop (Airborne!).
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 12, 2004, 00:04:49
If we consider a KFOR mission or even a base of support for a series of PRTs could we not consider this:

2Bravo's Recce Squadron with Recceguys 54 man AssltTp for screening ops for patrolling and area dominance

Add on 3 infantry companies (truck mounted, bog standard infantry as being described in the Future Infantry thread) for urban dominance

Add on 2Bravo's LAV Company as a Quick Reaction Force to support the BattleGroup commander, (it could be broken into deployed troops if need be to support independent inf coys)

Add on 1 arty battery (with sensors deployed but tubes stowed in SeaCans in case the weather changes) primarily responsible for base security (guarding the guns if you will)

Add on 1 Troop of MMEV (LAV-Brimstone) as a long-range precision fire support asset (either arty or armd)

Add on 1 sqn of Engrs

Add on necessary Forward and Rear Service Support elements.

That results in a deployable, self contained Task Force/Battle Group/Field Force with 7 F Echelon / Cbt Arms sub-units and adequate Command Control and Service Support, numbering something on the order of 1500 bodies all told.

Maybe we could add on a mixed flight of CH146s/CH148s or CH149s (4+2)?

If we organized to keep 2 such units in the Field with and operational tempo of 4:1 that would mean that we would have to find 70 Cbt Arms sub-units and about 15,000 F-Echelon troops.

Could we do this by getting rid of some of the "UNIT HQ Sub-Units"? eg a Brigade currently has about 9 HQ and Adm Sub Units, if we fielded 10 of these task forces then 1 Brigade could supply enough headsheds to outfit the entire army.

I think that within the numbers that we have, plus the 5000 or so that PM may supply, then we could create three brigades with two task forces described above, along with a LAV Brigade and a Light Brigade.

We would have 6 ready task forces (two deployed) and the Light and LAV brigades might supply troops, subunits or even units to form Ad Hoc task forces on 18 -24 months notice while still maintaining core capabilities. 

Rambling off topic..... but one point is critical here  - Scenario Based Planning

What do we think you might be asked to do, what do you think you can do, how would you do it and what do you need to do it.  What do we have on hand that we can work with an put up a creditable showing internationally.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on December 12, 2004, 01:58:05
I think in this context a mounted Infantry Coy would give the commander more options than an Assault Troop, which is really a platoon of Black Hat Infantry.
Assault troop is more than Inf, they are Engs, Arty also.
Based on my recollection of the Doctrinal Assault Tp, it sounded more like a pioneer platoon (not engineer) with a TUA section (which I do not believe was ever part of a real Assault Tp).   How were the mortars incorporated?

If you are looking to the Cavalry unit BG to be stand alone when deployed (and not part of a higher Canadian Bde), then I would suggest a rifle company (or two) and an engineer squadron.   Alternately if you are just looking to establish integral Cbt Sp for a Cavalry unit that will operate as part of an all arms brigade, then a Cbt Sp Sqn (like the Cbt Sp Coy once found in the infantry) would be the way to go for force generation.

I've been thinking about the engineers and I now believe that a Sqn would certainly be required for the "three block war" that the Armoured Cavalry might be deployed to.
I was starting to wonder if you would find this site after the fall of the official BB.   I agree with your assessment of engineer requirements and greater details cannot really be predicted without tailoring to specific missions.   On the small end, the squadron could consist of a Fd Tp and a Sp Tp.   On the larger end, the Sqn could consist of 2 x Fd Tp, 1 x Cbt Sp Tp, and 1 x Sp Tp.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 12, 2004, 10:49:23
Recce41,

I've sent you an e-mail, but I am pretty inept at e-mail outside my office.  I'll try and send one from work tomorrow if the one I just sent didn't get through.

MCG,

Good points on the force generation aspect.  The Armoured Cavarly Task Force would be task-tailored for each mission, and you offer two ways to go about it.

Here is a summary of my thoughts so far (refined in light of feedback here).

The role of the Armoured Cavalry Task Force is to obtain information for the Commander while denying the same to the enemy.  It performs the Sense function while impairing the same function for the enemy.

The structure is not fixed, but would have the following at a minimum:

    a.  RHQ (robust and including as ISTAR CC and an FSCC - FOOS are imbedded in Recce and Inf sub-units)

    b.  1 x Recce Sqn (3 x Coyote Tps plus 1 x LAV TOW Tp in warfighting scenarios)

    c.  1 x LAV III Infantry Company (with integral LAV TOW and possible MGS)

    d.  1 x ISTAR Sqn (EW Tp and HUMINT Tp at a minimum)

    e.  1 x Engineer Sqn (number of Tps dependent on mission)

    f.  1 x CSS Sqn (call it HQ Sqn for now)

Depending on the threat and nature of the mission the following could be added

   a.  1 x Fire Support Battery (guns or mortars)

   b.  1 x long Range AT Tp (MMEVs)

   c.  Additional Recce Sqn or Inf Companies

   d.  Additional ISTAR Tps (CBR, TUAV)

I am concerned that I have made this force too big (span of control issue).  Six is the maximum number of sub-units and this might even be too big.  Perhaps the Engineers, TOW and Guns/Mortars could be roled into one Combat Support Sqn?

This Task Force could provide a Cavalry role for a higher Coalition formation (Recce, Flank Security, RAS).  It could perform an excellent Screen task (including the destruction of enemy recce) and could arguably conduct the Guard task.

In a peace support operation it could either have an AO of its own or be a Commander's Reserve.  I kind of like the latter due to the Task Force's mobility.  I think that this force could fight the "three block war" quite well, although it would have to be careful in the "high intensity" part.

Thanks to all for the feedback and please keep it coming!

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on December 12, 2004, 11:53:39
A couple of questions on your Recce Task Force.  It looks to me to be a bit light on the actual "Recce" side.  Do you plan the 1 X Recce Sqn to concentrate solely on Recce and then have the 1 X ISTAR Sqn provide the combined Surv and EW posns?   Would the ISTAR Sqn have its Troops divided up into three car patrols (2 X Surv and 1 X EW C/Ss)? 

For MCG, the Assault Troop carries SEV kits, Demolition stores, and 60mm mortars.  This gives them a fair amount of flexibility, and negates the requirement for the attachment of Engr resources in most scenarios freeing them up for 'hard' Engr tasks.  I would take the Engr Sqn in a Recce Regt, but think it would be a bit of overkill in a Task Force such as discussed so far.  In a Recce Regt I could see the Engr and Inf Coy each attaching out to each of the Recce Sqns an Engr Tp and Inf platoon and maintaining their HQs, Support troops, and Echelons.  The Recce Regt would then consist of at least Three Cbt Teams.  There would also be the ability to 'call back' the attachments and form an Inf Cbt team or conduct and Engr heavy task.  If we were to reinstitute the Assault Tp, this would all change and then free up the Inf and Engr assets to remain basically intact in Coy and Sqn orgs.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 12, 2004, 12:50:35
2B

If you are concerned about span of control with more than 3 or 4 sub-units then might not a formation structure of something like your Cavalry Unit under a LCol, Future Infantry Unit also under a LCol and both those plus engrs, arty, comms, svc elms be grouped into a Field Force under a Col (something like a French Demi-Brigade) with 2 Field Forces being combined into a Brigade under a Brigadier.

This isn't too different from where we were and are but with this difference, the Field Force, not the unit would be the core administrative element.  Other FFs could detach units and sub-units to work with a FF but no unit could deploy independently.  As I suggested perhaps we could consider converting the 3 existing Brigades to this structure.

At the same time perhaps we could form the Light Brigade and a LAV Brigade (or Cav Brigade if you like).  The Light Brigade would be organized and trained to fight sub-unit and unit actions and be able to form 2 or 3 ad hoc FFs while the Cav Brigade would train and organize for a Brigade deployment and be capable of forming an additional 2 or 3 FFs.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 12, 2004, 14:38:25
http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,23652.0.html

I thought this article would be an interesting read considering the fact that we're discussing a "light and flexible" force....

Cheers,

Infanteer
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 12, 2004, 16:36:57
Good Read Infanteer.

Quote
In some cases, a slower, more methodical attack, one that allows U.S. troops to stabilize one area and hold it up as an example of what is possible for the rest of the country, could produce better results, according to emerging Army thinking.


Would this lead to the following?

Under Responsibility to Protect UN supplies Canada with authorization to establish a safe haven adjacent to an area of conflict. It could be across a national border, as in a safe haven in Chad for Darfur refugees, or it could be within national borders in an "open" area, ie in the Western Desert of Iraq or the Southern Marshes or in the Deserts of Sudan, away from the centers of conflict.

Quickly establish a defensive perimeter along with a refugee/medical facility.

Wait for refugees to show up.

Wait for offending government to either start killing its own people trying to reach the camp or try to evict the camp.

Apply heavy US type force to destroy government forces.

Make friends amongst refugees

Establish new government having won hearts and minds of local citizenry.

Bugger the blighters in charge.

UN and World's Press kept on side.

This implies light, reactive forces with strong defensive capabilities and integral abilities to meet humanitarian needs.   It also implies the need for heavy forces to deal with heavily armed and organized opponents through defensive measures and COUNTER-STRIKE capabilities (Tanks Guns Rockets and Bombs) to defend the Refuge.

A significant risk to early deployed forces unless heavy forces (air support) are on immediate call and heavy ground forces are available in very short order. eg even a battery Guns/Missiles and a Squadron of Tanks would cause the enemy government forces to take time to organize a more comprehensive attempt to dislodge the UN force.

The UN force would not have to be in close proximity to source of refugees. Some refugees are walking hundreds of miles to reach safety.

Attempts by the government to stop the movement would be justification to start dropping bombs on government forces and leadership.

Distance would buy the UN/Allied force time to set up a useful defensive perimeter.

EDIT  

Note to self: Must remember to read article thoroughly and in its entirety before spouting off.

Quote
Next year, the Army will re-fight the same war-game scenario. For their hypothetical attack, U.S. commanders are planning a slower approach. They will seize a section of the country, stabilize it and begin reconstruction. "We can use the region as an example of what is possible in the rest of the country," Gen. Fastabend says.





Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on December 12, 2004, 17:05:49
I am concerned that I have made this force too big (span of control issue). Six is the maximum number of sub-units and this might even be too big. Perhaps the Engineers, TOW and Guns/Mortars could be roled into one Combat Support Sqn?
The old Infantry battalions managed with six sub-units (4 x rifle companies, 1 x cbt sp coy, and 1 x admin coy) plus anything else added to form a BG.

I would be concerned that pushing more assets into larger sub-units would only move the problem of span of control.  The option you have not explored is to expand the unit staff.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 12, 2004, 23:27:15
If you are thinking of creating a "souped up" Armoured Regiment to do the Armoured Cavalry task, you may be running into span of command and interoperability issues. If an Armoured Regiment was configured with enough mounted recce, Surveillance, and ISTAR elements, and augmented with a company of mech infantry (the sort of "demi brigade idea alluded to above) as part of a larger task force organization, then I think you are closing in on the objective.

I would like to short circuit the fire support issue by suggesting the LAV BRIMESTONE is the ONLY organic PGM fire support element, so if it is close enough for a direct shot, fine, but it can also support from a distance as well. No TOW, MGS or MMEV, just the one vehicle and ammunition nature dished out at a rate of at least one troop/sqn. If possible, there could be a commander's reserve, so if we go with a BRIMESTONE Sqn in the regiment, and can create three CAV squadrons out of the Coyotes, G-Wagons and assault troopies, then a BRIMESTONE troop is attached for organic support and the last troop can support unexpected situations, back up the Infantry and so on. (do we have "pure" squadrons broken up to create Cav teams, or is each squadron a mixed formation?)

Some of the early posts seemed to have Armoured Cavalry as a BG level formation, which also made sense, since we can now easily integrate all the other goodies like Artillery, AD and Engineers into the Cavalry formation, and all working off the same Cavalry play-book
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 12, 2004, 23:47:23
George,

You are right that one Recce Sqn makes for a rather small Recce Task Force, but it could have more depending on the mission.   I see Cavalry as a mixture of systems that included the ability to find the enemy in addition to destroying his recce.   The minimum would be one of each sub-unit (Recce and Inf), with the smaller TF having the advantage of being somewhat easier to generate, deploy and sustain.   I would base the number of Recce Sqns in the Armoured Cavalry Task Force (ACTF?) on the size of the formation being supported.   If we are supporting a Coalition Brigade then one Sqn and one LAV Coy may suffice.   If we were supporting a Coalition Division then I would definitely want at least two Recce Sqns along with at least one LAV Coy.   Without harping on the span of control issue, I would suggest that the total combination of Recce and Inf sub-units not exceed four.   In addition, since we only have six Recce Sqns in the Regular Force right now, kicking out more than two at one time will be a huge effort (and very difficult to sustain).

With respect to the ISTAR Squadron (or Company), I would see this sub-unit as the home for the dedicated ISTAR assets.   While the Coyotes in the Recce Sqn(s) will feed info to the ISTAR Coordination Centre at RHQ, they are more than pure ISTAR assets.   EW and HUMINT would be my two mandatory ISTAR Sqn assets, with TUAVs and CBRs added in a possibles.   The ISTAR guys would use their specialized sensors to augment the collection abilities of the Coyotes in the Recce Squadron.   I see the EW and TUAVs as being particularly useful once we have hit a main defensive area or a high threat area.   On exercise we tend to lose most of our Recce when they are pushed past the enemy defences to gain an appreciation of the enemy's depth.   This would be the best time to use the TUAVs and EW to gain definition without risking lives.   EW and Humint would also be critical in stability and peace support operations.   I have separated them from the Recce Sqns to simplify the work of the Recce Sqn CP(s), while retaining the option to push specific assets down for specific operations.   TUAVs might need to be a sub-unit of their own due to their specialized planning and sustainment requirements.

MCG,

You are correct in stating that making a huge Combat Support Company is only hiding the span of control problem.   Perhaps you are on the right track with beefing up the RHQ if required.   If we truly need 2 x Recce Sqns, 2 x LAV Coys, 1 x Gun Bty, 1 x Eng Sqn and 1 x ISTAR Sqn for an operation perhaps we just give the CO the staff tools to handle it.

Kirkhill,

You provide another viable solution in splitting the Task Force into two or more units (perhaps one Manoeuvre and one Combat Support).    I'd rather rely on the support formation for the fire support in this case, but this might not be possible for some operations.

The "stripped down" Armoured Cavalry Task Force would be more suitable for operations in support of a higher Coalition formation, while the larger multi-unit Task Force would perhaps be more suited to independent operations (like a UN force where Canada has the lead).   The all singing and dancing Task Force looks less like Cavalry and more like a Battle Group or mini-CMBG, however, and might have a different role.

There may be operations where 3 light companies are more suitable than an Armoured Cavalry Task Force.   I do not see the ACTF as the only possible force employment model for the CF, but rather as my idealized commitment to a Coalition mechanized war.   The ACTF also has utility in a stability operation, although other constructs may be more suitable.   The ACTF could be seen as our "entry force" during high intensity operations (albeit in a Cavalry role for someone else's heavy forces) and then taking care of the transition to stability operations at the cease of organized conventional resistance.

A Majoor,

A Troop of super AT weapons would be welcome as long as we don't have to clear their fires through an ASCC or higher level HQ.  I'm also a little nervous about automated weapons flying overhead...My fear is that these weapons will be the Ross Rifle of the next war.  Great on proving range but not so great on operations.  Call me a skeptic, but I'll stick with TOW for now...

My vision of the Armoured Cavalry Task Force is neither an Armoured Regiment nor a Recce Regiment nor an Infantry Regiment but rather a combined arms team with the Cavalry role (getting info and stopping the enemy's efforts to gain the same).  It would not necessarily exist as a formed unit in Canada but would rather be force generated with formed sub-units.  They would train together in that role prior to operations (hopefully for a BTE or similar event).  If there was a radical realignment of MOCs in the Army then perhaps they could all be the same Cavalry MOC (Achtung! Tangent Alert! Tangent Alert!), but it could work with our current structure.

It would be a Battalion-level Task Force, with an RHQ from an Armoured Regiment or possibly a Mech Infantry Regiment.  The question of having mixed sub-units or pure sub-units is one that I am debating and am very interested in having feedback on.  Having pure sub-units would allow the Recce Sqn to focus on finding the enemy recce and the Infantry Coy to focus on killing it, but I see a benefit in having mixed sub-units.  Perhaps train to allow for cross-attachment to suit the situation?

Cheers,

2B

p.s. I might be goinig in circles right now, but eventually I will make it out of the hide and get to the attack position!   Once I'm on leave I probably won't be able to post very much, so I am trying to strike now while the iron is hot (so to speak).   My apologies to all if I am starting to ramble.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 13, 2004, 01:04:37
(Achtung! Tangent Alert! Tangent Alert!)

That's what we do best here.   :warstory:

Methinks a new thread is on the horizon.  Where to put it - Infantry, Armour?!?  The possibilities are endless!!!
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on December 13, 2004, 01:54:51
That's what we do best here. :warstory:

Methinks a new thread is on the horizon. Where to put it - Infantry, Armour?!? The possibilities are endless!!!

We could compromise and start up a New Catagory in the Field:  The Combat Team.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 13, 2004, 09:33:24
Didn't we have a "Combat Team of Tomorrow" thread?

Quote
A Troop of super AT weapons would be welcome as long as we don't have to clear their fires through an ASCC or higher level HQ.   I'm also a little nervous about automated weapons flying overhead...My fear is that these weapons will be the Ross Rifle of the next war.   Great on proving range but not so great on operations.   Call me a skeptic, but I'll stick with TOW for now...

I think the follow-on generations of weapons like "Net Fire", which are supposed to loiter over the battlefield seeking targets on their own might really make you squeamish. My guess is weapons which can cover 8-10 km should be considered organic to the combat team or formation, and higher level doctrine should envision a large manoeuvre box around the elements. I have used BRIMESTONE as the example in this thread since it has many virtues, including supersonic speed so you don't have to wait, and a smart seeker head so the forward elements do not have to be committed to painting targets. (A supersonic Hellfire is on the way when you suddenly discover your hand held laser rangefinder-target designator's batteries died....).

Man in the loop weapons like FOG-M have the virtue of being under control all the way to impact, but are usually subsonic in speed, and because a man must be in the loop, can only be fired one at a time. Autonomous weapons can be "ripple fired" for a time on target effect (imagine taking out all the firing positions along one side of the street when breaking an ambush), so BRIMESTONE, LOSAT or similar follow on weapons are prefferable for that reason. We could always go for a mixed battery of missiles.

A scenario to illustrate:

"Elements of the Canadian Forces Humanitarian Intervention Protection Field Force (CF HUFINPFF), the peacekeeping brigade announceded by Paul Martin during the 2004 election, were engaged in Dafur today while securing a refugee camp. While elements of HUFINPFF and the CF DART team were securing the camp, a convoy of up to seven pickup trucks armed with machine guns and carrying dozens of fighters approached. A HMMVW-LOSAT on "temporary loan" to the force was in a position on a nearby hilltop to observe. Radioing a warning to the troops in the camp below, the HMMVW fired its four missiles as one volley into the convoy, destroying the first four vehicles in a matter of seconds and causing the others to flee the scene. The soldiers in the camp had sufficient warning to dismount from their trucks and move into positions to defend the camp.

A team from the JAG office is leaving for Dafur tonight to investigate how the HMMV-LOSAT came to be in the hands of the Canadian troops."


Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 13, 2004, 14:22:59
Infanteer,

I finally read through the article you posted in detail. It is very good and raises some excellent points.  Without dereailing this thread, I found myself agreeing with the points raised.  We are good at teaching our people to count road wheels to tell one tank from another, but we often neglect the "human" side.  I learned in theatre that it was useful to look around the compound or vehicle and see whose picture was being displayed.  Good interpreters are extremely valuable and Canadian soldiers with language skills are a tremendous force multiplier.  I have included a HUMINT Tp in the Cavlary Regt ISTAR Sqn for this reason, and I prioritize them ahead of UAVs!  As an aside, on certain tasks our Coyote Patrol Commanders got more information by having tea (well, chai) with local commanders (assisted by an interpreter) rather than spying on them at long range with surveillance gear.  In addition to collecting information the HUMINT Tp would help train the soldiers in the Task Force in how to best relate with local leaders and people.  Our guys are pretty good as it is, but a little more training and finesse in these critical skills never hurt anyone.

A Majoor,

The Armoured Cavalry Task Force could indeed set up a humanitarian relief centre and couild protect it quite well (with or without the super-weapons of the future).  The Coyotes can set up a pretty good outer screen while the LAV Company could chew up a convoy of technicals pretty effectively with 25mm, TOW and 105mm (if the MGS gets online).  Dedicated humanitarian assistance operations would, perhaps, be more suitable for a more traditional Infantry BattleGroup like we normally deploy.  I envision the Armoured Cavalry Task Force conducting these types of operations as a secondary duty during transitional phases in the conflict or as an economy of force task until more task-tailored forces arrive.  Once the Task Force is more concerned with the Act function than Sense function it is changing into a traditional BG (in my opinion).

Cheers,

2B


Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 14, 2004, 11:44:51
A lot of the tangents are being caused by (perhaps) a lack of definition. Will the Cavalry be primarily tasked for screening, counter recce and flank protection? Then having access to some hard hitting weapons systems is a must. Will the gathering of information be by technical means to allow the broadest coverage (or least manpower bill)? Then Surveillance vehicles and UAVs will have primacy. Will the Cavalry be doing HUMINT? Then dismounts (either "Cavalry Dragoons" or attached Infantry) will be the key element.

All these jobs are important, but (obviously) not all can or will be done at once. The Cavalry organization will have to change and adapt as the situation changes, from "Three Block War" scenarios and PSO's to warfighting.

Given that, I am inclined to support "pure" squadrons/companies which can be mixed and matched as required. In extreme cases, you could go in "pure" (i.e. a G-Wagon squadron to do HUMINT in a secure/low threat AO), but more likely you will need to bulk up with attachments for various tasks. Having a Coyote troop supplying surveillance overwatch for the G-Wagons and an Infantry Platoon and Fire Support troop standing by on QRF might be a more normal state of affairs.

The need for additional Infantry and IF assets would make the Cavalry a "demi-brigade" formation rather than an actual unit under our current organization. Perhaps the only permanent Cavalry unit would be the "RHQ" (actually a subset of the Battlegroup HQ), which brings the ISTAR CC to the AOR and "plugs in" the appropriate sub units. [I am actually not a big fan of this idea, being big on unit cohesion and esprit de corps, but this actually is in line with the current CF doctrine.] If manoevure warfare doctrine is fully developed to support Cavalry, then we should look to creating permanent Cavalry units in our ORBAT.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 14, 2004, 12:46:03
While I am flexible in how the Cavalry are organized and equipped, I have always envisioned their role as obtaining information for commander while denying the same to the enemy.  Perhaps this could be summed as "providing security for a supported formation", in that the Commander knows what the enemy is doing and has his own actions protected from detection.  I envision this force as the best way for Canada to provide troops to a future "mounted" warfighting scenario.  We would focusing on a role that we are good at with modern equipment.  In addition, it is a role that is in demand from our potential Coalition partners. 

The Cavalry would conduct recce for an advancing formation while also collapsing the enemy's security zone.  While a traditional Recce Sqn could conduct the recce, it would have difficultly destroying the enemy's recce assets and was also somewhat vulnerable.  Putting LAV TOW in the Recce Sqn gives it the ability to engage enemy armour if required to allow the Recce vehs to carry out their information gathering task.  By adding a LAV Company (with some integral combat support) we can now fight the "counter-recce" battle without compromising our own recce.  The LAV Company would be the home of the "heavy hitting weapons" such as TOW and MGS.  If super weapons come on line in the future then they could also be included but the role of the Cavarly would not change.

The Armoured Cavarly would also excel at flank screens and guards.  It could find and destroy enemy recce (thus protecting the supported force) while also defining the main enemy approach.  These are all traditional war-fighting scearios, and I think that the role of the Cavalry is clear in those situations.  In stability operations, however, the role might begin to merge with a traditional "battle group" that we see deployed on operations. 

I believe that the Armoured Cavalry can conduct a wide range of information gathering operations due to the flexibility of the component sub-units and the ability to add sensors to the ISTAR Sqn based on the mission.  Does this mean that the Armoured Cavalry will be a "jack of all trades and master of none" when it comes to getting information?  Perhaps.

I think that the Coyotes and LAVs can collect "HUMINT" during warfighting operations as long as there is linguistic support and the crews are willing to dismount and talk to the local population.  The proposed HUMINT Tp in the ISTAR Sqn would still be the cornerstone of that capability, but they would be assisted by the Tps in contact with the local population.  The HUMINT Tp would be "vectored" by the soldiers on the ground just like UAVs, EW and other specialized assets can be.  The process works in reverse as well and the ISTAR CC at RHQ plays the key role of "quarterback" or "offensive coordinator" of this process.

I envision the Armoured Cavalry Task Force as being force-generated for specific operations.  This is the reality of our force-employment model.  As long as the components of the Task Force are cohesive (formed sub-units) and the RHQ is a permanent HQ then I think we can still achieve the required esprit de corps.   The ISTAR Company that I belonged to was an extremely composite group, but it was based on a cohesive centre that had trained together for over a year and the component Tps arrived as formed units.

Cheers,

2B

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Acorn on December 14, 2004, 22:42:55
Sorry, I had to skim this thread, but the intro of HUMINT into the discussion caught my eye. I'd like to offer a couple of observations on HUMINT, which may be a bit outside the topic.

First, HUMINT is part of the job of every soldier. Every pair of eyes and ears is a sensor.
Second: HUMINT as a specialty is in a different league than presence patrolling or CIMIC. The latter ops provide HUMINT, but are a component of the whole package.

It would be an abuse of limited resources to use HUMINT trained pers to use them to provide training to the line troops. They are also a national asset, with defined arcs and strict controls. They really cannot be a battlegroup asset, nor an ISTAR asset, despite the value of their input. The ASIC should be the point of contact between dedicated HUMINT assests and the BG. The separation is necessary for the protection of both source and HUMINT operative.

Anyway, I'll leave it there, as this is well outside the Armoured Cavalry lane, and discussions of HUMINT may well be best kept to professional publications outside the Internet.

Acorn
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 15, 2004, 00:41:08
Acorn,

Your expertise is more than welcome on this and I agree completely with your first and second observations.  I concur that we do not need to go further here and your points are certainly taken.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 15, 2004, 01:06:09
The DFS Regt & other Future Armoured Regiment ideas http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,23061.30.html covers some of the ground we are looking at, at least on the more conventional warfighting and screening tasks.

Combat Team of Tomorrow http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,22245.0.html approaches mounted warfare from a slightly different angle.

A few different angles to look at the Armoured Cavalry idea in the conventional role. I'm sure we can find more threads dealing with the proposed recce/dismounted patrolling and ISTAR tasks as well.         
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on December 15, 2004, 01:49:30
I hesitated to tread in this thread as i am a newcomer to the forums and PBI as well, but Brother Majoor has suggested I do so.

I would humbly suggest an org similar to this:

Armoured Cav (or Amd Recce) Regiment.

RHQ SQN with IUAV TROOP, ISTAR TROOP


ASSAULT SQUADRON. Org and trained as a LAV III Mech Rifle COY but manned by Black Hats. The Amd Troops would be trained to the INF BTS and healthy doses of recce trg.
3 asslt troops and a pioneer troop

Aslt SQN ROLE: Support the Other Sqns.

HEAVY RECCE SQN    DFSV and COYOTE . (A heavy amd recce sub-unit with substanial ability to look after itself)

CLOSE RECCE SQN    4 troops of light recce veh (VBL's or similar plus Rovers with MG Kits etc) plus a heavy troop with DFSV

The soldiers of the regiment would all be Armored Corps troops. Troops selected for ASLT SQN would be trained inititally by INF but as time goes on by Armoured Assault OFFR and NCO's  to a common Mech INF BTS


This allows for greater cohesion within the Regiment as all troops are RCAC.

this would work for the INF crews manning the INF regiments DFSV and LAVS as well.

Trained to common standards but retaining their unit identities.


Am I thinking along the wrong lines?



Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on December 15, 2004, 01:56:58
This allows for greater cohesion within the Regiment as all troops are RCAC.
While your comment is well intentioned, it sounds a little like building an empire.  I think the way of the future is for regiments to include both manoeuvre arms.  This idea is explored in the thread on regimental formations.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on December 15, 2004, 03:43:48
I would humbly disagree.
I think my suggestion neatly covers the inclusion of both mounted and dismouted troops in one battalion and gives them a common identity without losing Units. The regimental loyalty is focussed on the regimental identity while the regiments members can conduct tasks once traditonally held for other arms, rather than attempting to create ad-hoc mixtures of (for the sake of example) a few RCR rifle COys and RCD Squadrons.

Do we need to creat "new units" or simply give new tasks (re-roll) and re-equip our existing structures.

The infantry battalions would remain focussed with on closing with and destroying the enemy (Strengthened by the return of the 4th Rifle COy and a re-inforced Combat Support Coy including a DFSV Platoon, PNR and MOR PL)

I don't see it as Empire building, but simply using the flexibilibilty of the regimental system to provide us with multi-role combat capable units.

My model , out of interest, is loosely based on the Late War German Panzer Aufklarungs Abteilung (Amd Recce Bn). These units performed traditinal infamtry and armour roles yet wore the same badge.



Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 15, 2004, 04:01:12
If we are going to discuss doing things that contribute to greater cohesion in the Regiment (which I fundamentally agree with) then perhaps we need to look at the Regiment as something different then a Trade Union.  How about defining our Regiments (Identities, Organization, etc, etc) by how we do things (air assault, cavalry screen, close combat) rather then what we do (drive a tank, shoot a rifle, fill out paperwork)....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 15, 2004, 11:59:17
A Majoor,

I've been through the two threads you mentioned, and they are partly the reason I started this thread.  I have accepted that the tank is disappearing from the Canadian inventory and I strongly believe that this means we cannot currently fight the "close battle" in a mounted environment.  It could have been argued that the Leopard C2 was not suited for that battle either, but I'd rather not re-open that battle.

Basically I see the Canadian Army as having two types of forces right now:

    a.  Light forces (need some doctrine and perhaps some new kit); and

    b.  Mounted forces that cannot truly fight the close battle (in the sense of Combat Teams and Battlegroups seizing Objective TOTALIZE etc) even if super-missiles come on line for the CF.

I can envision two possible roles for our mounted forces:

   a.   Cavalry style operations in warfighting scenarios (supporting a coalition formation); and

   b.   Stability operations such as Bosnia and Afghanistan (and perhaps a post Apr 03 Iraq style war with certain caveats).

I think that our Coyotes and LAVs can do a good job of finding the enemy in a warfighting scenario, but the only "Act" function that we can realisticallly take on is the destruction of enemy recce/security forces.  I am not wrapped in the name or lead capbadge/beret colour of the force (although I like Armoured Cavalry), as long as the role of a mounted task force is confined to Cavalry style operations I would be happy (not that making me happy should be the Army's main concern right now!)

Steel Badger,

Welcome to the thread!  I think that your organizational lines are sensible, although it does introduce the issue of capbades. Beret colour and MOCs that might be better off on other threads.  My Cavarly proposal is somewhat inspired by the German Panzer Division Recon Battalions (I used to play a fair number of microarmour wargames and I always liked the Aukflarungs Battalions).  I'm not sure that our mechanized infantry battalions can still close and destroy the enemy.  Ironically, I think that the LAV III battalions will feel the loss of the tanks as much if not more than the Armoured Regiments.  The best that I can see a LAV III (with TOW and MGS) Coy doing is destroying enemy OPs and isolated security outposts.  This is still an important task and one that our potential Coalition partners would be very happy to have on board.

All,

I think that composite task forces will be the norm for the time being.  When you are wearing either helmets or floppy hats the capbade and beret colour issue can fade somewhat.   As for the future of the Armoured Corps and its relation to the Infantry, this has been covered in other threads.  The Armoured Cavarly role allows both branches to work together in a realistic mission that takes advantage of their current equipment and skills.  As long as the Recce Sqns and LAV Companies work together on exercise (CMTC) before deploying I think that we can mitigate the problems of unit cohesion.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 15, 2004, 13:33:41
There is an issue of "scale" to be considered. If we are thinking of a Cavalry screen for PSO's or small deployments, then maybe all we need is a "fellowship". Bigger deployments of BG size might need up to a "Demi Brigade", while some posts allude to the idea that Cav is all we will be able to do, and so we can convert entire brigades into "Cavalry Regiments".

Each scenario will require a slightly different organizational slant. The "Fellowship of the Cav" model is ideal for mix and match organizations, with the advantages of almost unlimited flexibility, but the disadvantage of lack of corporate identity, corporate memory and unit cohesion. A "Demi Brigade" will have more utility, since there are more "boots" available for the various tasks, bigger and more capable sub units, and the component sub-units will have internal cohesion by virtue of living and working together even prior to standing up and deploying as a "demi-brigade". Cavalry Regiments on the US model are efficient all arms formations (although they also are structured to employ organic aviation and heavy elements as well). A CF "Mechanized Cavalry Brigade" will have the most flexibility due to its self contained nature, and can undertake virtually all of the patrolling, screening, flanking and rear area security tasks a Cavalry unit may be asked to perform.

My only caveat in all these scenarios is even if the doctrinal role is to perform the screening, flanking, economy of force etc. measures, the unit may well be faced with a situation that requires it to fight, either "fight in" (to destroy an enemy recce force, or secure a "Safe haven" area in a PSO, for example), or "fight out" (breaking contact, counter ambush, defending an AOR in a PSO scenario [OP STORM in Croatia comes to mind). Planning to have the allies deal with these situations could set us up for disaster if help is not coordinated properly or cannot arrive in time (a scenario our enemies will work hard to set up), and at the least, it allows the enemy to control the pace of the operation and gives him the initiative.

The Canadian Mounted Rifles come to mind, since their role was to have effective dismounted fire and be able to seize key terrain. They performed Cavalry-like missions in South Africa (screening, route security and "convoy escort") as part of their tasks, but had the ability to deal with various opponents through both fire and manoeuvre. Like our "tankless" configuration, the CMR was not able, nor expected to charge against the enemy to deliver the "Arme Blanche", but used mobility to get to good fire positions. This is the analogy I like since it is probably closer to the sort of actions envisioned at the beginning of the thread. Converting battalions into combined arms formations able to do this is probably the best way to go.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on December 15, 2004, 13:38:48
Herr Panzer-Aufklarer Offizier.....


I am like the Pz-Auf orbat as well, seems quite applicable....

As for the Inf Bns......perhaps we can restore forward mobility by restoring Combat SUpport Coy, adding ATGM to the INF lavs and a DFSV Platoon of 8 DFSV to CBt SUP Coy,

If heavy armour is required, use a Pz Ko from our armoured Regiment. (Since we are talking "should be-couldbe" our Army will retain a heavy Panzer unit right?) ;D

 As for Capbadge, I dont know why the RCD's for example could be re-rolled as an Amd Cav / Pz AUf unit. Enroll more Dragoons and train an Assault Squadron. All bases coverd and no Capbadge issues.

Just as, for the sake of an example, 1 RCR's new DFSV Pl would be manned by Inf Pers trained to Armoured BTS. All wearing the RCR badge.


Both units benefit from combined   arms; better cohesion; and no units are lost.

(Man, with all this "should be" stuff I nearly used 1 RHRofC as my example inf unit >:D, I MUST be dreaming)

We could focus our regular force combat units as follows:

1 Armoured Regt
2-3 Amd Cav / Pz-Auf Regts
6 Mech Inf Bn
3 Air Assault Bn


3 deployable Bdes w/ 1 Amd Cav Regt and 2 Mech Inf Bns + 1 Arty Regt

And 1 Amd regt + 3 air assault Bns as "Div Troops"



By the By Sir,
Just obtained a great book which takes an indepth look at WW2 and Modern German Armour small unit tactics: seems very comprehensive.

PANZERTAKTIK, german Small-unit Armour Tactics by Wolfgang Schnieder.

JJ Fedorowicz Publishing, 2000    www.jjfpub.mb.ca is the publisher's web site.


Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on December 15, 2004, 13:55:18
Steel Badger,
Have a look at these talks on the regimental system: http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,23656.0.html

They propose a system where regiment is no longer tied to infantry or armour (but rather to both).  An infantry soldier could spend a full career as an RCD or a cavalry soldier could spend a full career as PPCLI.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on December 15, 2004, 14:34:22
Each scenario will require a slightly different organizational slant. The "Fellowship of the Cav" model is ideal for mix and match organizations, with the advantages of almost unlimited flexibility, but the disadvantage of lack of corporate identity, corporate memory and unit cohesion. A "Demi Brigade" will have more utility, since there are more "boots" available for the various tasks, bigger and more capable sub units, and the component sub-units will have internal cohesion by virtue of living and working together even prior to standing up and deploying as a "demi-brigade".

Thank you, that is what I was getting at....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on December 15, 2004, 14:35:53
Ja anke Herr MCG
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Recce41 on December 15, 2004, 16:19:01
First off
 An Armour Assault Sqn would not require Inf training. An Assault troop course covers this. As an Assault trooper (Snr NCO), I am qualified, Adv Demo, Inf section/ptl to level 4, defence to level 4, patrol to platoon level ambushes, etc,etc. The full basic course is 3 months long. Not counting the extra training for Eryx or bridging. When we went to Bosnia as the D$S troop. We were # 2,3,5 for section and 2 for platoon level evaluation.
 Also the Inf want to give up there LAVs to crewman. Crewman are mounted SMEs. Only Inf Adv Recce covers mounted tasks. The Regt/trade system works. That is why the US Army is looking at our system. There is pride as a Crewman, Inf, Arty, Eng. Not as just a soldier.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 16, 2004, 10:52:27
I imagine that MOCs will pretty much remain as is for the foreseeable future.  Crewmen are the experts on mounted operations and infnatry are the experts on dismounted operations, but there is overlap that goes both ways.  The Recce Sqn Assault Troop was an outstanding organization but we have lost our Assault Troop here (for the same rationale as the Infantry lost their combat support platoons).

What has changed is the concept of Regimental Battle Groups deploying on operations.  The "plug and play" concept of putting various sub-units under a generic BG HQ will most likely be the model for the next few years.  The pros or cons of this could be discussed elsewhere, but the Armoured Cavalry concept fits this new model.  The Regimental system will continue (I believe and hope), but deployments will be a mix of capbadges and MOCs. 

As an aside, the US Armored Cavalry Squadrons and Regiments did not have infantry in them when I was in the States (except for the mortarmen in the Cav Tps).  The ACRs have artillery in their Squadrons (one battery per Battalion-sized Squadron) and there are considerable Aviation assets in the various outfits, but the M3 Bradleys are crewed by Armoured soldiers (same MOC as the tankers but with a different speciality code to identify them as scouts).  The two dismounts in the back of each M3 are Cavarly as well.  Could every soldier in my proposed Armoured Cavalry Task Force be armoured (011s)?  Yes.  Will they?  Probably not.  My proposal is full of real-world compromises in order to make it as realistic as possible.

Thanks to all for contributing so far.  I've got a lot to chew on here and some issues/concerns that I had not thought of right away.

Cheers and have a good leave, and especially to our deployed soldiers please have a Merry Christmas!   :salute:

2B

p.s. To any of our fellows at Camp Julien, is my Buffallo Bills pennant still hanging in the old ISTAR CP?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 20, 2004, 14:04:04
Just a small update, this diagram proposes the use of a "recce missile" for quick, short and medium range data gathering. Substitute small UAV or FOG-M and you can envision how this might work with currently available technology. Naturally, this is a supplement to the other systems on the ground, and ultimately the commander will need boots on the ground to check out the highest priority targets.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Brad Sallows on December 22, 2004, 23:48:07
>but Cavalry connotates the dashing charge with lances or sabres flashing in the sun

That would be (to me) the assault/shock function we currently associate with the tank branch of evolution of the cavalry (ultimately, "manoeuvre arm") tree...cavalry also connotates raids, recce, screen & guard, pursuit, mounted infantry...

My meandering thoughts:

If this is just a modification of a recce sqn/regt (eg. obtain and deny information), why not keep that name ("recce")?  If it is truly to be "Cav", the role, tasks, and organization must also be suited to occasional straight-up fighting.  I would be inclined to have at least three identical mixed (manoeuvre) sub-units rather than three different specialized (manoeuvre or manoeuvre support) ones.  Depending on mission they might operate independently or together.

>a.   should there always be integral fire support (guns and mortars) in the Task Force?

Yes; size of AO.  Mortars (120mm) at the unit level, established on basis of minimum of 2 tubes and 1 MFC per manoeuvre sub-unit.

>b.   should there be integral engineers and if so at what level?

Yes; unit; established on basis of minimum of 1 armd engr sect per manoeuvre sub-unit.

>c.   should the sub-units be pure recce and pure LAV infantry or have each sub-unit be a mixture of both?

As above.  I am inclined to follow the US M3 model, but to use a LAV with integral crew (3) plus 4 dismounts (thus 1 ptl dismounts a sect of 8).  I would elect MGS (ideally, tanks, right?) over TOW, particularly if something dismountable with a longer range than Eryx is added to the menu to go into the back of the "cars".

...Hm.  I see myself describing an inf btl gp which is a little lighter on the inf side, with a significantly different mission skill set.

Since this is potentially only one of many collection assets, I incline to keeping some of the ISTAR/EW (particularly the "I" and the "EW") functions in different elements of the formation.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 23, 2004, 01:03:22
Hi Brad, haven't heard from you for a while.  Glad you're back.

Reference your comments about the differences between your Cavalry Force and an Infantry Force disappearing, I think you are right.  I also think that is part of our problem.  Our Infantry, with its LAV IIIs  has moved more towards a light armoured Cavalry formation, thus squeezing the Armoured guys out of a job and at the same time not leaving enough Infantry strength in our field organization.

Transfer all the LAV IIIs to the blackhats I say.....with or without blackhat dismounts.  Reattach to infantry battlegroups as the need warrants.  If the infantry needs an armoured truck then lets buy them something like the Stryker APC so that they can maintain section integrity and uniformity of tactics and training.

Cheers, Chris.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 23, 2004, 02:02:29
Kirkhill, if I am reading you right, then a future armoured regiment will resemble a current LAV Infantry battalion? Three squadrons of LAVs with (say) four man "dragoon" teams in the back, plus a Coyote surveillance squadron and a Headquarters squadron. The LAV squadron might be further subdivided into 3 LAV troops, I MGS troop and the Admin troop.

I am a bit of a heritic and agree the Infantry really don't need the Delco turret on their LAVs (I am an Infantryman myself BTW), but the OWS does need either a HMG or an AGL, and perhaps a mounting point for a Javelin anti-tank weapon. CASR has a conceptual drawing of a LAV III with a 25mm on an OWS mount http://www.sfu.ca/casr/mp-lavpws.htm to give you an idea of what it might look like.

This is getting back towards doctrine, but we have let the cart drive the horse for such a long time our "doctrine" is being writtent to accomodate what we have in the inventory, rather than buying the kit that supports the doctrine. At least Cavalry is a flexible doctrinal model, and applicable in many situations and force structures.



Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 23, 2004, 14:07:47
Art you have me 5x5.

In fact I would even suggest that the "4th Brigade" if it were ever to happen would be better of being a concentration of the RCDs, Strats and RBCs and dedicated to the manoeuvre battle.  Have them prepare detached Squadrons to support infantry Battle Groups in their parent Brigades when necessary for the mission.  Light Infantry (Sorry, lets call them Line Infantry seeing as how Light now connotes Special) Line Infantry is still the basic requirement for all Interventions.

For those of you that aren't fed up with me citing Brit examples (Hey, if Infanteer can keep harping on about PanzerGrenadiers, who lost, then I should be allowed to refer to the guys that won - and besides unlike many other Forces, they have a plan, they publish the plan and they work the plan.)

Here is the Brit play book:

Small Enduring Mission -

1 Eng Rgt
2 Infantry Battalions
1 Light Armd Recce Tp
1 Lt CS Arty Bty
10 Ground Attack Aircraft

Small Assault -

As above plus

2 GS Arty Btys
1 AD Bty
8 AH-64
6 Air Def Aircraft

Medium Enduring Mission

1 Reinforced Engr Rgt
3 Infantry Bns
3 Armd Sqns
1 Lt Armd Recce Sqn
3 Med CS Arty Btys
2 GS Arty Btys (STA, UAV, and/or MRLS)
8 AH-64
10 Gd Atk AC

Medium Asslt

As above plus

3 Engr Regts (Reinforced)
4 Inf Bn
5 Armd Sqns
3 Lt CS Arty Btys
1 Med CS Arty Bty
12  AH-64
22 Gd Atk AC
16 AD AC

Large Assault

6 Engr Regiments
19 Inf Bns
16 Armd Sqns (4 Regts)
9 Lt Armd Recce Sqns (3 Regts)
6 Lt CS Btys (2 Regts)
10 Med CS Btys (3 Regts)
11 GS Btys (including up to 4 MRLS Btys plus STA and UAV Btys)
36 AH-64
64 Gd Atk AC
2 AD Regts
16 AD AC

The obvious observation concerning these forces are that they are Infantry heavy forces with a small but capable Armoured force, heavily supported by Firepower when the need arises.  (Air Defence is available but obviously considered a low threat)

Right, wrong or disagree this is the structure that is driving the UK Force Plan and resulting in a force with 39 Infantry battalions (incl the 3 RM Commandos) - 40 if the 1 Para SAS-Lite Unit is included.

This inf force, only includes 6 or 7 heavy Warrior IFV battalions and 6-9 medium Saxon WAPC battalions, is a predominately Light force of 20 to 25 light Battalions and their "elites"  are the lightest of the lights.

Armour has been down-sized and shifted from Heavy to Lt, Arty has been down-sized and shifted from weight of shot to surveillance, speed of response and range.  The Airforce has been radically downsized and shifted from Air Defence to Ground Atk.

This is their foot-print for a Force that can conduct Sustain Constabulary missions and also fight its way out of problems and contribute meaningfully to High End coalition operations.

Maybe the size of their Force is beyond us (although that could be argued but that is another thread) but the shape of the Force is something that I think merits our close consideration.

In the words of an ancient Brit song contest...."I loike it!!"

Cheers


http://www.mod.uk/issues/security/cm6269/chapter5.htm

Here's the Brit planning guide for Force structure.








 
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on December 24, 2004, 13:01:46
Brad,

Glad to see that you still post (I remember you well from two other boards)!  The introduction of LAV III and the departure of the Leopard have certainly caused some "task creep" between the Armoured and Infantry.  Could we just take a LAV BG, give it a Coyote Sqn and call it a Cavalry Task Force?  Probably (I suggested as much in the old CF Board).  I see the Cavarly Task Force as a realistic force employment option for our Army that does not require wholesale reorganization or the acquisition of new equipment.  I am going to reserve judgement on the whole MGS thing until I actually see on in the field.  I certainly see potential for it in the Cavalry role.

As long as the Task Force has an all-arms ISTAR Coordination Centre I would be content.  Other assets could then plug-in for certain missions or tasks without having the other issues associated.  I see TUAVs (Tactical UAVs) as a sub-unit of their own and not simply as an attached Tp.  Perhaps a "Cadillac" Cavalry Task Force has one or two Recce Sqns, one or two LAV Companies and a TUAV Battery (but drop the ISTAR Sqn)?

I am not fixed on the name, but I am a firm believer that we must change or expected roles on the "mounted" battlefield.  The Cavalry role (protecting other forces) is one that we can do with our current "stable."  We could probably stand up in a defensive engagement, but assaults etc should be taken out of our playbook.

Kirkhill/A Majoor,

The LAV III could have "scouts" placed in the back instead of "infantry" and assume a role similar to that of the M3 in a US Heavy Cavalry Troop.  This would mean a rather radical shift in how the Canadian Army is organized.  For now, I would like to see a Task Force where the Recce Sqns find the enemy and the LAV Company(s) are there to enable the Recce to do its job while also destroying the enemy's recon assets. 

Cheers and Happy Holidays,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on December 24, 2004, 23:14:27
Merry Christmas 2B.  And to all the rest of you.

Cheers
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on December 28, 2004, 22:56:09
The LAV III could have "scouts" placed in the back instead of "infantry" and assume a role similar to that of the M3 in a US Heavy Cavalry Troop. This would mean a rather radical shift in how the Canadian Army is organized. For now, I would like to see a Task Force where the Recce Sqns find the enemy and the LAV Company(s) are there to enable the Recce to do its job while also destroying the enemy's recon assets.
.

So a "Cavalry" regiment could be built by having a Coyote squadron attached to a LAV Infantry battalion, and reorganize the HQ element to include or incorporate an ISTAR cell? This sounds good from the point of view of minimum reorg, plus the three companies of mounted Infantry would provide lots of flexibility including mounted/dismounted patrols and the ability to fight a counter recce battle with on board weapons and the dismounted Infantry weapons.

Quote
I am not fixed on the name, but I am a firm believer that we must change or expected roles on the "mounted" battlefield. The Cavalry role (protecting other forces) is one that we can do with our current "stable." We could probably stand up in a defensive engagement, but assaults etc should be taken out of our playbook.

My big fear is that if we are not prepared to do assaults, we will be caught with our pants down. Waiting for the Air Cav or UA Heavy to show up could lead to a situation where we are defeated in detail, and always hands the initiative to the enemy (the exact opposite of Manoeuvre Warfare doctrine). Drawing from various other threads; bolt some fire and forget weapons on the LAV turrets; upgrade the LAV-TOW, gain through tube missiles for the MGS...Just so long as we are not bringing a "knife to a gunfight".
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 18, 2005, 14:05:35
This is the dismounted analogue to what I see as a future "Cavalry" unit or "Future Combat Team"  Thanks to Kirkhill

http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,23740.0.html

It seems that these guys are fed up with "seeing" and not being able to "do".   Effective, precision fire, at long range, with little collateral damage and a very short OODA loop.

Interesting that their secondary tasking is training Designated Marksmen - it seems that the rifleman, as opposed to the assault trooper and machine gunner, is making a comeback.

Quote
Rainbow Division Deploys 'Intel Snipers' to Iraq
  
  
(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Jan. 15, 2005)
  
  
 FORT DRUM, N.Y. --- The 42nd Infantry Division has deployed to Iraq with what leaders term a powerful, yet subtle, combat-multiplier â ” the sniper-trained Soldiers of the division's 173rd Long Range Surveillance Detachment, and their newly-issued M-14 rifles.  
 
The rifles are â Å“part and parcelâ ? of the changing LRS(D) mission, said the unit's commander, Capt. Michael Manning.  
 
â Å“This is not a detachment of snipers,â ? said Manning. â Å“This is a detachment of highly trained intelligence collectors. We have sniping capability. Now we can acquire targets, identify targets, and destroy targets with organic direct fire weapons. That's the big change. That's what these weapons allow us to do.â ?  
 
Manning said LRS(D)'s mission used to be strictly reconnaissance and surveillance working in small groups 80 to 100 kilometers beyond friendly lines, reporting information on enemy movements and the battlefield to a higher command. The enemy and battlefield have changed, so the mission has changed, according to Manning.  
 
â Å“We're not training for the Fulda Gap anymore,â ? said Manning, referring to the area in Germany that NATO forces were assigned to defend against Russian maneuver brigades. â Å“We're fighting insurgents who operate in small groups. That drives the way we conduct operations.â ?  
 
Manning described the new mission as reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition in other words, LRS(D) will be assigned to observe areas for improvised explosive devices and indirect fire activity and, if ordered by the combatant commander, eliminate insurgents with their sniper rifles. The M-14, commented Manning, has redefined the unit's mission. â Å“It's a tremendous force multiplier. It's a tremendous asset on the battlefield.â ?  
 
Equipping and training LRS(D) on the M-14 rifles was a joint effort of the 42nd Infantry Division, the 1215th Garrison Support Unit at Fort Drum, the First Army Small Arms Readiness Group, or SARG, and FORSCOM, according to Lt. Col. Richard Ellwanger, chief of personnel, 1215th Garrison Support Unit.  
 
â Å“Our mission is to support the mobilization of the National Guard and Reserves,â ? said Ellwanger. â Å“We work with the post to provide an infrastructure for the National Guard and Reserves while they're here at Fort Drum.â ?  
 
The M-14 rifles will increase LRS(D) Soldiers' ability to neutralize targets without collateral damage, said Ellwanger. â Å“The rifle gives the Soldiers the ability to engage targets out to 800 meters. Once the word gets out to the insurgents that the Soldiers have that capacity, they will be less likely to get inside the 400- to 500-meter range and engage with RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades) or medium machine guns.â ?  
 
The instruction of the SARG team was superb, according to Manning. â Å“These guys are superb marksmen. They instilled in LRS(D) the techniques, tactics and procedures that make them good marksmen. They're professional. To a man, they're first-rate marksmen.â ? Most of the training took place at Fort Drum's Range 21, where the sniper-trained LRS(D) Soldiers zeroed and engaged targets with their iron sights, and zeroed the scopes on their rifles.  
 
â Å“By virtue of going through this training, LRS(D) Soldiers now have the confidence in themselves that they can effectively operate this weapon system,â ? said Manning. â Å“What the 42nd Division has done, by virtue of outfitting LRS(D) with M-14 rifles, is make us the cutting edge of the LRS(D) community.â ?  
 
But the real edge in LRS(D)'s sniping capability are the LRS(D) Soldiers behind the newly issued M-14 rifles â ” graduates of the four-week National Guard Sniper School at Camp Robinson, Ark. With their M-14 training complete, the LRS(D) soldiers became trainers themselves, turning Soldiers from other 42nd Infantry Division units into designated marksmen.  
 
â Å“We're a combat multiplier because we can give the division planners nearly real-time information, and a picture of the battlefield,â ? said LRS(D) sniper-trained Staff Sgt. Tim Halloran. â Å“If we're on a mission and we acquire a high-value target, we can not only report it to higher [headquarters], we can eliminate it.â ?  
 
â Å“Hopefully we can interdict the people placing the IEDs,â ? said LRS(D) Assistant Team Leader Cpl. Wayne Lynch, who, along with LRS(D) Team Leader Staff Sgt. Thomas O'Hare, served a tour in Iraq last year.  
 
â Å“That's all I thought about when we were in Iraq last year: 'how do we stop these people who are placing the IEDs?' Now that we've got snipers in LRS(D), we're able to do surveillance and take direct action,â ? Lynch said.  
 
Deployed to Iraq with the 119th Military Police Company, Rhode Island National Guard, Lynch said he and O'Hare made it their job to find IEDs. Lynch said he hopes LRS(D) will be tasked with interdicting terrorists placing IEDs. He's been a member of the unit for nine years and loves it. He does not regret going back to Iraq. â Å“I'm going with a unit I've trained with,â ? he said. â Å“I'm honored to go to war with them.â ?  
 
Based in Rhode Island, LRS(D) ruckmarches to the north summit of New Hampshire's Mount Mooslacki every year. All members of LRS(D) are airborne qualified, and nine are ranger qualified. They have to do a jump every three months to maintain their airborne status.  
 
â Å“We train on a higher plain,â ? said LRS(D) sniper-trained Soldier Spc. Richard O'Connor. â Å“Most units do five-mile rucksack marches. We do 15-mile rucksack marches. Other units have 45-pound rucksacks. We have 80-pound rucksacks. We have to march farther and faster than anyone else.â ?  
 
O'Connor was a scout/sniper with the 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division. He's been on real-world missions to Tunisia and Liberia, and took part in the rescue of Air Force Pilot Capt. Scott O'Grady, who was shot down over Bosnia in 1995.  
 
â Å“Anticipation of the mission is awesome,â ? said O'Connor. He described the job as a â Å“rushâ ?, and said LRS(D) team members must be physically fit, mature, and disciplined, and must know each other's jobs. Part of that job is going â Å“subsurfaceâ ?? patrolling to a location outside friendly lines, digging a hole, and living in it while observing enemy activity.  
 
â Å“They might live in that hole for two to four days,â ? said Manning. â Å“It takes an unbelievably disciplined individual to do this job.â ?  
 
â Å“We're just guys with rifles,â ? said O'Connor. â Å“You have to have absolute confidence in everyone on your team. There's nothing else in the Army I want to do.â ?  
 
-ends-


http://www.defense-aerospace.com/cgi-bin/client/modele.pl?session=dae.4308111.1089903978.QPadasOa9dUAAESlMZk&modele=jdc_34

Since tanks and shock action are "out" for a while, substitute high mobility through the use of medium AFVs, excellent SA through a combination of effective tactics, surveillence equipment and "plug ins" to higher level systems, and enhanced leathality through the agressive use of PGM fire to take out hostile targets at the maximum possible range.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 18, 2005, 16:41:33
Is a sniper an ISTAR asset or a direct fire weapon?  I guess he can be both (almost anything with optics and comms can be an ISTAR asset).  I take it that these guys are not "snipers" but perhaps this is an exercise in sematics.  Adding the ability to "act" to the assets dedicated to "sense" can be useful (although it does pose problems0.  One thing that I like about Coyote OPs is their ability to use firepower if required (not so much for the vehicle hooked up to the surv gear, but the second one is available).  In PSO or stability operations this capability can be very handy since other assets may not be immediately available.  I saw several situations where the firepower potential of a Patrol of Coyotes deployed to an OP was a "good thing."

Precision firepower is in vogue today for many reasons.  In our "Three Block War" environment the ability to take out an opponent with minimum collateral damage is critical.  The combination of infantry snipers and armoured recce has been done on operations.  Looking at the larger context, my proposed Cavalry Task (or a Wheeled Battlegroup) could try to pick apart a defensive position with long range fires while avoiding close range engagements.  Perhaps a series of rapier thrusts as opposed to our old battleaxe... ;)

I examined something like this on the old CF board by looking at ways for a LAV BG (with MGS, TOW, ADATs and artillery) could try to fight a conventional opponent in offensive operations.  We could conceivably use the Coyotes, UAVs and EW to identify enemy positions and then destroy them with precise long range fires.  Those fires could be from ADATS (MMEV), TOW, MGS, artillery or fast air/aviation.  FOOs, Coyotes and UAVs could act as the sensor (especially if we give Coyotes the ability to laser designate).  We would essentially "snipe" the enemy to death.  The trick would be to be able to engage the enemy outside of his own weapons engagement band.  Heavy forces resolve this by having the ability to withstand hits from enemy AT systems.  We do not have this luxury (and we never did).

While it could work I saw (and see) a few problems.  The enemy may not be accomodating in his selection of positions.  Good concealment (whether with reverse slopes, vegetation, urban areas or civilians) will probably mean that some positions will go undetected.  I came across an interesting article regarding Op ANACONDA which stated that while the battlefield was the subject of an intense pre-battle ISTAR effort many of the enemy positions were only found by bumping into them.  Our army wants to go away from the advance to contact but I am afraid that sometimes we will still find the enemy by his firing at us.

Another issue is time.  Deliberately picking the enemy apart will require lots of time and I am not sure that we will be able to afford this luxury.  Finally, if our Cavalry our wheeled forces meet obstancles we will be sorely pressed to breach them.

Based on this, I believe that while we could find the enemy and perhaps destory his security elements I do not think that assaults should remain an option for our mounted forces.  I'm afraid that the assault will have to be left to the armies that still have "battleaxes."  We can still play an important part, however, by guiding that blow.  My worry is that our Army will simply substitute MGS/MMEV for tank in our doctrine and carry on.  The Cavalry Task Force could probably hold off an attack quite well but I do not envision it as an assault force in a convential battle.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on January 18, 2005, 16:51:52
Good Analogy a_majoor and thanks for the nod.

2Bravo as to the use of Snipers as an ISTAR or DF wpn, I would argue that the answer is situational.  Having the capability, especially a relatively cheap one like a rifle and scope, does not mean that the capability has to be used.  It is available if the situation demands it, for example time is short or the target is of sufficiently high value, but more often than not Binos/TI/II/LRF/GPS and Comms are going to be more valuable along with that "priceless" asset, an undisclosed hide.

So the question becomes one of, regardless of the nature of the platform, Coyote or Black Caddy's, can you see farther than the distance at which you are seen and can you bring fire down on a target farther than the range at which you can be hit?

In this type of scenario, as opposed to the "shock and awe" assault.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 18, 2005, 17:37:27
Kirkhill,

I agree with you completely regarding the situational nature of ISTAR vs DF.  Doing one should not preclude being the other.

The trick with seeing without being seen is that line of sight is reciprocal.  We can try to get around the risk element through technical means (UAVs, masts, robots etc) but we cannot depend on these 100%.  If we are advancing this will be a bigger problem.  Range is also an issue since the terrain will not always give us the luxury of observing outside of the enemy's weapon range.  We should still strive to see without being seen, but we also need to have some protection when this is not possible.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 18, 2005, 19:46:50
PGM fire is not always LOS. If we were to say Gill/Spike/Dandy instead of ADATS we have a system of fire and forget weapons which also offer a FOG-M man in the loop option. The ability to hand off target data from forward observers will also go a long way to reducing exposure to enemy fire and counter-fire.

The concept Kirkhill showed us combines some of the best features of "sneak and peek" recce with the ability to influence the battle. A Cavalry unit or Future Combat Team would have some sort of recce/scout element working the AOR (maybe even troops trained like the ones in the article), as well as technical means to survey the battlespace operating in tandem. Together they would scout out the area, and direct the mounted troops and PGM fire onto enemy targets that are identified either before they see us, or as a result of contact.

By preference, I would vote for a "Fennick" or other small scout vehicle for the scout/recce elements, but a LAV Recce without the mast but with a dismounted scout team would also work. Various versions of the LAV/LAV TOW/MGS/MMEV or other armoured vehicles (even traditional tanks and IFVs) will supply the muscle to deal with larger formations or strong points, with the proviso the lighter the vehicle family, the less ability to prosecute contacts by shock battle.

The combination of observation, mobility and firepower in the unit Kirkhills article describes sort of negates the question about ISTAR or DF asset: it is an "inside loop" unit, which reports to the "outside loop" to assist in framing the larger battlespace and for logistics support.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 18, 2005, 21:14:24
As long as we need an observer we will deal with LOS issues, but I do see the value in the FOG and other such systems.  I still don't see them as making us able to assault defended positions.

I see Cavalry at its root as a force that protects a supported formation by getting information and stopping the enemy from doing the same.  I see ait as a combination of "sense" capabilities with some capability to "act", but that "act" function is only to support the sense mission or hinder the sense function of the enemy.  In this respect the long range observer with a sniper rifle is somewhat analagous.  We need to be careful, however, as virtually any direct fire system could be considered as having "sense" and "act" functions.

If we are in a scenario where the Cavalry has identifed a line of enemy resistance that cannot be bypassed it can support the attack by Coaltion heavy forces.  In addition to identifying Assy Areas, Fire Bases, LDs etc (and providing guides) it could use the Coyotes, FOOs and possibly UAVs and EW to bring in precision fires to support the attack. These fires do not have to be organic.

Cheers,

2B

p.s. I am not one who worries about whether a sniper is for shooting or observing.  I sure am happy, however, that our snipers are on our side! :)
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 19, 2005, 13:52:50
I think the only real area of disagreement is how much "act" should a Cavalry formation be able to do? American Armoured Cavalry is the "high end" of the scale, having lots of integral assets to launch assaults when required.

My fear is that as long as we shy away from the need for the formation to "act", there is a big danger of losing the initiative at the point of contact. I think we all accept the fact that LAV or Stryker type vehicles are ideal for the Cavalry screen role but not well suited for the assault role. Since we must accept the LAV as our primary platform for some time to come, we can forgo the ability to do assaults and accept we might get into situations where this puts us at a disadvantage, or find a substitute means of "acting". PGM fire allows us to "snipe" the enemy and take out even hardened targets like AFVs or bunkers. Since the enemy will probably be operating in low force to space ratios, the ability to snipe hard points might be all we need to maintain freedom of movement and maintain the initiative. Infantry who can stay with the armoured elements of the Cavalry formation (Liddel-Hart's "Tank Marines") provide the close protection and provide the flexibility to deal with difficult terrain or "non permissive" environments.

Looking at the UA Heavy thread, I noticed that formation is square. I think a Cavalry formation might need to operate with a 1:2 armoured to infantry ratio in order to have the flexibility needed to deal with close terrain or non permissive environments.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on January 19, 2005, 14:05:11
If we review combat footage of the battles fought in the last two Gulf Wars, one will soon come to the conclusion that vehicles armoured in the same fashion as LAV will loose in any Combat engagement.  We are setting ourselves up for a "Fall" 

The Americans have a much larger Armed Forces and much larger budget taking up a greater percentage of the GDP.  They can have the luxury of Light, Medium and Heavy Forces, with various "specialities" in each of their Branches, etc.  We do not have those luxuries and must maintain an all round "General" capability, which by no means makes us look at "Light" or niche roles as the only way.  Light or niche roles will degenerate our Armed Forces, with time, to be totally incapable to contribute in any endeavors other than Domestic non-military/combat tasks.

We will have to look at the American Cavalry and its' flexibility and structure and reevaluate our "on the cheap" policies.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 19, 2005, 15:40:30
AMajoor,

I took the US Army Cavalry Leader's Course back in '98, and one of the things they emphasized was that while the Heavy Cav have lots of combat power they are not intended for assaults.   There are no infantry, as the Bradleys all carry Scouts.   There are lots of anti-tank weapons and artillery (mortars and guns, depending on the organization) along with varying degrees of aviation but the intent is not to assault enemy positions.   In defensive operations (a key consideration in the Cold War) they could certainly fight a holding action and could devastate an opposing mechanized force.   In offensive operations they can conduct a very robust zone reconnaissance that includes the destruction of enemy security elements but they still prefer to leave the assault to the Armor/Mech Inf boys.   It is true, however, that if a Heavy Cav Tp came across a enemy tank battalion leagured in the open deset they could certainly do something about it.

One advantage of this propose Armoured Cavalry is the presence of organic infantry.   It still do not see assaults happening without tanks, but having the infantry component does bring certain advantages.   This Cavalry Task Force would not be trying to fight the whole war on its own.   If some company position needed assaulting then the commander of the supported formation would assign the appropriate assets based on the information gained by the Cavarly.   If the enemy presses against our force (ie attacks it), then I think that the organic infantry and TOW/MGS and possible MMEV would enable us to fend off the attack.   Again, this is along the lines of the US Civil War Cavalry (tipping my hat to Buford) and our Boer War cavalry (as you have mentioned here and elsewhere).   The TOW/MGS/MMEV and Fire Support that could be included in the Cavalry (TOW and some form of supporting artillery at a minimum) would definately by used to neutralize enemy AT systems in the security zone or in lightly defended area with a view to permitting the recce tps/sqns freedom to maneuvre.

The ratio of Recce to Infantry is flexible and you are correct that it would probably need to be higher in complex terrain.   That being said, in an urban or compartmentalized environment I would like to see 2:2.   The coverage of our ISTAR assets is constrained by urban terrain, so I think that we'd end up needing even more Recce.

George,

We will certainly loose if we try to wield our LAV force in a battle trying to accomplish the tasks of tank/inf Battlegroups.   I still think that there is a "niche" for our mounted forces and that is as Cavalry.   As long as we are honest about our capabilities and do not try to fight as though we had tanks or that our ISTAR and potential PGGs could replace tanks then at least we can conduct meaningful operations.   Looking at the Americans, they have Light Cavalry (HMMVW based).   When I was in the states they were concerned about the protection of the HMMVWs (this is before Iraq but after Mogadishu).   They use the Light Cav for formations that deploy rapidly and this does involve some acceptance of risk.   Some US officers had seen the Coyote and saw it as an interesting alternative to the Light Cav.   The whole Stryker brigade concept has followed this path, although I have read that the Stryker ACR has become a casualty.

I see our Army being capable of conducting three types of operations:

     a.   Light operations in a warfighting context (although we need Chinooks)

     b.   Cavalry operations in a warfighting context (as described here)

     c.   Stability Operations (ISAF, SFOR)

We can still fight across the spectrum of conflict, but our contribution to the higher end will admitedly   be "niche."  

Cheers,

2B

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Cdn Blackshirt on January 20, 2005, 00:49:20
Admission One:   I'm a civvie, and my knowledge and viewpoint are not going to have nearly the depth of the majority of those partipating in this discussion.

That being said, I just read this entire thread and my impression is this is not so much a debate of "how do we create a truly effective force to best deal with theatres we are likely to encounter" but instead a discussion of "how can we best use the wrong kit we already own to do something useful".  

My primary concern is that the force structure discussed appears to be designed to face a conventional opponent which I would argue will be the exception to the rule in future deployments.   On the contrary, I would argue that for the stabilization/ peacemaking role our citizenry (and Liberal Government) expect you guys to handle, it is far more likely your theatre of operations would be an urban environment against irregular infantry with RPG's/IED's.

In that environment, using an armoured cavalry formation to destroy opposing force intelligence gathering appears questionable as in Iraq and Somalia before it, you had individuals (in many cases children) with cell phones calling regional insurgent commanders who were hidden in someone's basement in the middle of a city.

In essence, if the threatre I envision is going to be our dominant environment, we would need to accept we cannot eliminate the opposing force's intelligence gathering capability and accept that the enemy will know our force structure, composition and location at most times.  

With near-perfect intelligence, you are the target.   The enemy needs only to sit back and devise attack methods to "crack the nut".  
Engagements timing and location will much more often be dictated by that enemy and you will forced to take the first hit, and then react.

Bottom Line:   I find the model you're discussing horribly disconcerting as if deployed in that urban environment by our government, we could end up with a lot of brave men & women who don't make it home.   The only workaround is a force policy that if the enemy does possess RPG's/IED's/etc, that Canadian Forces are limited to deployment outside those urban areas where they have the safety of a defensive perimeter to keep thin-skinned vehicles from taking such attacks.   (City perimeter surveillance and convoy escort?)

My apologies in advance if I've stepped over any lines I don't know exist....I come to this board to learn from you guys.

Many thanks,



Matthew.   :salute:
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 20, 2005, 01:39:42
Fresh insight is most welcome!

You make some good points and have identified some critical weaknesses.  The Armoured Cavalry proposed here would certainly face severe limitations in a stand-up block by block streetfight.  I have outlined the "warfighting" bit to demonstrate what we could do if tasked to participate in an operation like the initial phase of OIF.  I am trying to find a role for our mounted troops now that the tanks are gone (and by mounted I include the LAVs).  As a serving junior officer I have no influence over what equipment we get but I can make suggestions as to how to use it.  Instead of throwing my hands up or wishing that we had Abrams I am trying to find meaningful roles that we can fulfill with the gear that we have and I think that the Armoured Cavalry is one.

Despite the constraints fo the environment, I think that the Armoured Cav (with LAVs and Coyotes) can make a very valuable contribution to urban stability operations.  A pair of Coyotes or LAVs is a much tougher proposition for insurgents than a pair of jeeps.  Our Coyotes were extremly useful and very busy in Kabul and I think that a force with LAVs and Coyotes would do also do well in Iraq (still need tanks if we want to go street fighting however).  They are certainly not invulnerable, but they give much better chances than HUMMVWs etc.  We can't just sit in our camps and hope for the best and having wheeled armoured vehicles gives us some additional options in the urban stability environment.  I was not really a believer in the LAVs and Coyotes until I went to Kabul.  The Coyote were busy from start to finish and were in demand from all contingents.  You still need to balance this with not looking like conquerers rolling around behind armour but it is nice to have the armour available.  Perhaps I am just a tanker trying to find a new home after I lost my last one!

Cheers,

Iain
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on January 20, 2005, 12:23:52
Would it be a fair assesment to suggest that not all urban warfare will occur in Megalopolises (Sadr City in Baghdad type situations) but that there is also a likelihood of having to control smaller centres where they are isolated by rural areas and have clearly defined perimeters?

Under those circumstances wouldn't the Cavalry be an effective tool for controlling the perimeters and dominating the "spaces between"?  The Infantry would then concentrate on the Urban fight as well as other complex terrain fights. 

Having said that I am sure it would be a great comfort to those Infanteers, if there was a well defended (read armoured), mobile force, capable of entering a "hot" zone and either extricating them at short notice or else assist them in winning the engagement.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 20, 2005, 13:23:35
My primary concern is that the force structure discussed appears to be designed to face a conventional opponent which I would argue will be the exception to the rule in future deployments.   On the contrary, I would argue that for the stabilization/ peacemaking role our citizenry (and Liberal Government) expect you guys to handle, it is far more likely your theatre of operations would be an urban environment against irregular infantry with RPG's/IED's.

In that environment, using an armoured cavalry formation to destroy opposing force intelligence gathering appears questionable as in Iraq and Somalia before it, you had individuals (in many cases children) with cell phones calling regional insurgent commanders who were hidden in someone's basement in the middle of a city.

In essence, if the theatre I envision is going to be our dominant environment, we would need to accept we cannot eliminate the opposing force's intelligence gathering capability and accept that the enemy will know our force structure, composition and location at most times.   

With near-perfect intelligence, you are the target.   The enemy needs only to sit back and devise attack methods to "crack the nut".   
Engagements timing and location will much more often be dictated by that enemy and you will forced to take the first hit, and then react.

Bottom Line:   I find the model you're discussing horribly disconcerting as if deployed in that urban environment by our government, we could end up with a lot of brave men & women who don't make it home.   The only workaround is a force policy that if the enemy does possess RPG's/IED's/etc, that Canadian Forces are limited to deployment outside those urban areas where they have the safety of a defensive perimeter to keep thin-skinned vehicles from taking such attacks.   (City perimeter surveillance and convoy escort?)

Here is where I am coming from WRT the ability of a Cavalry formation to have some combat muscle. It does take a fresh set of eyes to see and state what we have been circling around! Now that I have read back over the thread,   my mistake was not qualifying what sort of combat actions I was expecting a Cavalry formation to be able to handle. In addition to finding and defeating enemy recce or Cavalry type formations in a conventional scenario; the Cav would have to be able to perform "counter ambush" type short assaults against enemy forces lying in wait with RPGs, IEDs and irregular infantry, not stand up battles against the 42nd MRR. Getting back to Gen Buford, this would also resemble the opening day of the battle of Gettysburg, where the Cavalry opened the battle by deploying and forcing the fight on the Confederate infantry division, only instead of "One Corps" coming to the battle, we would be waiting for the Air Cav or UA heavy to arrive. The message is there does have to be enough combat power to win the counter ambush drill or force the fight on the opponent.

Blackshirt also has quantified the sort of opposition we are likely to face, so the Cav formation will probably have to load up with more infantry ands especially more recce/scout elements to find them. Given our equipment set and experience, a dismasted Coyote carrying a four man patrol in the back would be a good start, especially if the surveillance kit is to be transferred into a larger LAV III chassis (freeing up more Coyotes for this role.) The dismounted scout element would probably also resemble the unit portrayed in Kirkhill's article, able to locate and if required, eliminate enemy soldiers, leaders and equipment.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Cdn Blackshirt on January 21, 2005, 10:20:40
So what about a mixed force?

Keep a majority of your wheeled assets outside highly urbanized areas and swap your purchase of the MGS for something slightly heavier with tracks (Warrior/M-2/CV-90)

In that way, if you're going to add a new incompatable chassis, at least it can perform a different role?

The other thought I had which I have mentioned in the past is that I think our Coyote's Recce/Surveillance Groups need to be bulked up with a VTUAV like Fire Scout.   Specifically, I think it would be an excellent doctrinal change if we tried to operate our forces with overhead surveillance at all times.

(http://www.globalsecurity.org/intell/systems/images/rq-8b_vtuav_040924-n-0295m-043.jpg)

In any case, can you gentlemen comment on your thoughts on such a modified force (assuming cancelletion of the MGS and acquisition of something/anything else) and how you would structure it?

I'm certainly not an expert on unit structures and anything you teach me would be greatly appreciated....


Many thanks,



Matthew.     :salute:
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 21, 2005, 12:12:53
A few observations about your post:

A heavy vehicle could work as part of a mixed force, but as always there are some trade offs. An "All LAV" Cavalry unit can do extended road moves at high speed (80 kph or more) on the existing road networks. In Iraq, this allowed Marine LAV and Army SBCTs to displace rapidly and unexpectedly, presenting the enemy with a complete unit before they were aware the unit was on the move. A heavy unit mounted on tracks would have to employ the services of a transport unit to move the same distance and speed (and save the wear and tear on the vehicles and roads). This is not to say the LAVs in a mixed combat team could not provide escorts for the light tanks or whatever tracked vehicles are being transported, but there would still be a pause while everything is unloaded and sorted out, which would give the bad guys time to become aware the unit has arrived in the AOR. The extra logistics requirments of tank transporters, more fuel bowsers, mechanics and recovery vehicles etc. are the real reason tanks and tracked forces are not as easily deployable as a "medium" force.

Air cover is weather and lift dependent, so fixing your doctrine around constant overhead surveillance and cover would limit you to operating on clear days and nights. As well, if you were too dependent on one system, the enemy would eventually figure it out and adopt countermeasures. Extra care with camoflage and concealment, robust anti-air defenses to shoot down UAVs or even suicide bomber attacks against ground control stations could be used against this sort of capability. In the Balkens, I recall reading the Serbs used helicopters to chase down Predator UAVs and door gunners attempted to shoot the Predators down. Since the Predators were flying "low and slow" attempting to get documentary evidence of war crimes, this wasn't as hard as it sounds. Israel has also encountered some problems, since UAVs often announce the impending arrival of an attack helicopter or a ground force. The Palistinians or Hezbollah members they are searching for can "go to ground", or ambushes prepared to meet the oncoming force.

That aside, UAVs will provide a useful capability and enhance existing ones, if you are interested in similar ideas look up "The Return of the Canadian Mounted Rifles" in the Army Doctrine and Training Bulletin Vol 5 No 4 Winter 2002-03 http://armyapp.dnd.ca/ael/adtb/vol_5/adtb_vol5no4_e.pdf
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on January 21, 2005, 13:37:43
a-majoor

I can see some of your points of wheels vs tracks, but in war I doubt if that will be much of a factor.  I don't seem to recall any problems of Heavy Armour in WW II or Korea or any major conflict, where we would have had to use tank transporters in the way you alluded to.  That is a 'bean counter' type of arguement, and I won't fall for it.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 21, 2005, 13:52:27
I was commenting on the How and Why, not the value of heavy forces. We need to understand what the government wants us to do, then find the appropriate kit to do so. If our job is to do expeditionary ops for PSOs and supply a "niche" Cavalry component for our bigger and better equipped allies, then these proposals fit the bill.

If we are going to be tasked as a "General Purpose" army which can fight "with the best, against the best", then no, these ideas are completely inadequate. We will have to wait for the (ever) pending Defense Review to find the arcs and axis of advance.....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on January 21, 2005, 14:02:50
I know.

Just a thought: what if we took all that money for the MGS and bought MAN Tank Transporters like we used to have in Germany (Although we only had four, which were not enough for any tactical movement.)

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 22, 2005, 00:05:53
The Cavalry Task Force would be well suited to convoy escorts and other such tasks normally associated with Rear Area Security.  Since lines of communication are now a target of choice this is an important role.  One conumdrum is how to best organize the Cavalry for this task.  Both Coyotes and LAVs can conduct escorts and a mixture of the two would probably be optimum.  A Patrol of Coyotes as the vanguard, a couple of LAVs with the main convoy and perhaps an additional Patrol trailing with a Section.  In a counter-insurgency style operation perhaps mixed Sqns/Coys would be the best approach.  TOW etc might be less useful in this type of scenario.  Having each Cav Sqn consist of two Coyote Tps and two LAV Pls might be interesting.  MGS might fit in somewhere but for convoy escort situations the 25mm would probably suffice.

Coyotes could be used to establish surveillance throughout the area with a view to catching insurgents in the act of setting up but this is harder than it sounds.  Getting tied to static OPs can hand the initative to the enemy but it does remain as an option.

The Cavarly as laid out here would be well suited to two parts of the Three Block War (the humanitarian and peacekeeping blocks) but it could face some challenges in the third block, namely the highly lethal mid-intensity urban battle.  With its infantry component and AFVs it does have the basic parts but I'd sure like to have tanks with it if we're asked to dig the bad guys out.   :evil:

I am a big admirer of the CV90 family and I got a chance to crawl around in one overseas.  Tracks, a 30mm Bushmaster and a low silouette make for a good AFV.  Still, I've based my assumptions on our having the kit we have now plus some potential extras that are forecast (MGS, LAV TOW and MMEV). 

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on January 22, 2005, 16:39:05
Just on the idea of Convoy Escort, a Seven Car Troop is the minimum requirement.  One Patrol out front as Vanguard, one Patrol as Rear Security, and one as Escort with the Troop Leader.  A Section to Platoon size Infantry presence would be an asset; size depending on size of convoy. 

One also has to remember that the Troop Leader is at all times the Convoy Comd, no matter what the highest rank may be in the Convoy or VIP being escorted.  It is the "Escort" who have all the Comms, Fire Power an overall "control" of the convoy.

Gw
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 22, 2005, 22:54:41
George,

I would agree that three elements plus the Comd is the way to go.  The five car Tp has many issues!  I do suggest that the force can be a mixture of Coyotes and LAVs and not necessarily a complete Tp or Platoon (perhaps two Patrols, two to three Sections and an HQ Veh).  The commander could either be a Pl Comd or a Tp Ldr (or a Tp WO).  I would like to have a LAV III with the trail patrol to give them some infantry to act as an immediate "QRF" if things go bad up front.   Long distance or high threat convoys could also have recovery and medical assets travelling with the trail.  Of course, bigger is not always better when it comes to convoys.  Again, the mixed nature of Cavalry would lend itself to task tailoring and maximizing the strengths of each arm.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Gobsmacked on January 22, 2005, 23:17:18
  Looking at the Americans, they have Light Cavalry (HMMVW based).  When I was in the states they were concerned about the protection of the HMMVWs (this is before Iraq but after Mogadishu).  They use the Light Cav for formations that deploy rapidly and this does involve some acceptance of risk.  Some US officers had seen the Coyote and saw it as an interesting alternative to the Light Cav.  The whole Stryker brigade concept has followed this path, although I have read that the Stryker ACR has become a casualty.

SBCT4 (2nd Armd Cav Regt - Light), currently in the process of standing up, used to be the US Army's Experimental rapidly deployable Light HMMVW-based Cavalry formation - although it deployed just too late to participate in OIF.
In early 2004, to save US$500M, it was decided the 2nd ACR would adopt the same infantry-heavy configuration of the other 5 SBCTs, so basically an ACR in name only.  As noted in 26 May 2004 'JDW', "the 2nd ACR will have 27x MGS variants rather than the 48 originally planned, and 127 Infantry Carrier Vehicles instead of 13.  It will mean that the Bde will have 1,000 dismounted soldiers as opposed to 500 in the originally planned cavalry configuration, an army spokesman said."  This means that each SBCT will now comprise: 3x Inf Battalions - w\ 65x Strykers (each w\ 10x 120mm mortars); RSTA (reconnaissance, surveillance & target acquisition) Cav Sqn (Bn) - w\ 53 Strykers (incl. 6x 120mm mortars); Anti-Tank Company (w\ TOW 2B) - w\ 10x Strykers; Artillery Bn w\ 18x 155mm M198 towed-howitzers (Eventually NLOS-C); Engineer Co - w\ 9x Stryker ESV; plus support elements.   :salute:
I also understand that each SBCT is eventually planned to include an integral aviation Bn - including AH-64D Longbow helicopters.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 22, 2005, 23:54:41
Gobsmacked,

Thanks for the intel.  I had heard that the Stryker ACR concept was basically turning into an infantry SBCT and it is good to see the details laid out.  The whole Stryker debate got a little warped on both sides of the border.  When I saw a fledging proposal in Fort Knox in 1998 to go with a LAV ACR instead of a HUMMVW ACR it seemed to be a good idea and not controversial in the least.  It somehow turned into a M1 vs Stryker debate along the way.  As long as the SBCT is not given tasks meant for heavy forces it can be an very useful unit.  The Cavalry proposed here is similar to the SBCT if not the same.  I would argue that all of the SBCTs are actually Cavalry organizations in the first place.  Names are perhaps not as important as roles.

Looking back to Canada, if I had a magic wand I would have all of our mounted forces Cavalry and the rest Infantry.  I would even make the section in the back of the LAV III Cavalrymen.  The Canadian Army would have several Cavalry Regiments and several Infantry Regiments.  Realizing that this is not practical I have tried to suggest a way to achieve some of the same effect without the organizational bloodshed.   >:D

I think that the Light Cavalry Squadrons in the light divisions (101st, 82nd and 10th Mtn) still have the HMMMVW Ground Tp and two Air Tp composition (they did two years ago).  I think that it makes sense for those units due to the nature of their parent divisions.  Do you know if this is still the case?

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on January 22, 2005, 23:59:38
Looking back to Canada, if I had a magic wand I would have all of our mounted forces Cavalry and the rest Infantry.   I would even make the section in the back of the LAV III Cavalrymen.   The Canadian Army would have several Cavalry Regiments and several Infantry Regiments.   Realizing that this is not practical I have tried to suggest a way to achieve some of the same effect without the organizational bloodshed.     >:

2Bravo,

I've explored this proposal at well, on this thread (http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,17788.0.html).  Funny, I think I got it the notion of it from an earlier proposal you made on the official Army forum a few years back....

Infanteer
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on January 23, 2005, 18:50:50
OK here he goes again....

In my real world I design processing plants.  They happen to be food processing plants but I think I see some similarities to their operations and the operations of the Stability Operation type forces that the CF is trying to create.

This is not for War-Fighting this is for Stability Ops Garrisons.  And try to get by the â Å“Oh Crikey â “ another flaming management consultantâ ?.  You have ample opportunity to shoot me down later.

In Stability Ops the task of the Unit assigned is to create a secure environment for the duration of the assignment on a 24/7 basis.  This seems to be primarily done by presence patrols. The patrol capability is supplied by personnel augmented by equipment.

The Authority of the Unit comes from its ability to Act and eliminate, or at least offer a credible threat to eliminate, judiciously, threats to that security.

The Unit also must be able to protect itself as well as the security of others.

The Unit must be able to maintain effectiveness by being able to maintain the equipment and also allowing personnel adequate rest and recuperation.

In my world Companies must maximize capital and this is done, as much as possible, by running equipment 24/7 year round.

This is done by buying kit necessary to get the job done, maintaining a marginal surplus of kit to handle U/S situations and planned maintenance, maintaining spare parts and over-manning (in military parlance) the kit.

This plays out this way in practice.  An ideal company will have a requirement to produce 100 items per day.  It will acquire 3 lines each capable of producing 50 items per day.  Each line will normally operate at 33 items per day (3x33 = 99 or ~ 100).  When one line is down then the other two lines pick up the pace and go up to maximum capacity.

Now assume that each line conventionally requires 2 operators therefore the plant needs 6 operators to run and a supervisor to coordinate their activities.  7 bodies.  What happens these days is that the 3 lines are linked with a computer and only two operators are required and the Supervisor is surplus to requirements.  Only 2 bodies.

But now the plant is not being run with only one shift it is being run 24/7 year round.  This requires 4 shifts or 2 operators or 8 bodies in total each working a 2150 hour year instead of 7 bodies x 4 shifts for a total of 28 bodies.

The plant has surplus kit to the tune of 50% of capacity but it is overmanned to the tune of 300% (3 spare operators for every operator on shift).

Now as I look at these Stability Ops it seems to me that the problems of stress are at least in some part due to the fact that a Crisis based war-fighting force, where personnel are being asked to work 24/7 for a 72-96 hour period and then be withdrawn or replaced is being asked to operate a Security Plant using the same manning model but for a 6 month, 9 month, 12 month period.  Burn out happens.  Nobody asks the Mounties to supply a Secure environment at home by having their members on duty 24/7 with an occasional leave.

Nor do the Mounties issue (AFAIK) individual Mounties with personal Cruisers, Boats, Helicopters or Aircraft.

Following on from these thoughts it occurs to me that a Stability Force operation organization might look something like this:

Primary task â “ patrolling

Recce Squadron â “ 3 Recce troops of 8 cars and an Surveillance/Observation troop of mixed composition of kit are deemed to be necessary to supply the secure environment.

The Force is supplied with 4 Recce troops of cars and surplus observation platforms to cover U/S kit.  (Need 2 EW-LAVs? Supply 3 to the theatre)

Now manning.

Recce will be conducted 24/7.  Recce operators can't work 24/7. If they were tasked as Civilians (everybody moan here.......) then each Serviceable Recce Troop (lets say of 24-32 bodies) would have 72-96 bodies either back at base or on leave.

The troops back at base would be available for less demanding tasks and as a protective force when not resting or on leave.  They would add to camp security.

Secondary task â “ eliminating threats

Assault/Combat Force comprising Mech Inf, Direct Fire Support and Arty.

This force by contrast to the hard working Recce types (overt attempt to curry favour) will spend the majority of their time lazing around the camp, polishing brasses, training and waiting for the call.....that hopefully never comes.

In the meantime they are contributing to camp security.

The Assault/Combat Force equipment will not be used hard, nor will the personnel.

In that case we assume that every piece of kit deployed has a job to do IN THE ASSAULT and thus is needed and likewise every man or woman is needed.  We also assume that they, by and large are not going to have the wear and tear on them that the Recce types will.  Therefore the need for spares is less, and in a low risk environment may be non-existent meaning that no spare radios, vehicles or personnel are required.

In a high risk environment maybe we want 1 spare vehicle for every 2-10 deployed and one spare soldier for every 2-10 deployed.  Think LOB troops here.

Now if there is a lot of commonality between Assault Force training and kit and Recce Force training and kit then perhaps some of those Recce types that are not on patrol can form a backup Assault Force or contrarily some of those idle Assault Force types can form one of the Recce Force manning tiers.

But I don't really think that is likely nor do I think it is desireable as such a strategy would lead bean-counters to start thinking in terms of double hatting and idle hands and reducing personnel down time.

Support functions would be manned someplace in between because a lot of their functions can be programmed to be performed for specific times and be of specific durations.

So what would the overall Force Composition look like?

Recce Force

1 Recce Squadron of Vehicles with an extra Troop to cover U/S vehicles.
4 Squadrons worth of Personnel

Similar manning and kitting for Command, Sigs and Surveillance.

Assault Force

1 Mech Company of Vehicles
1 Mech Company of Infanteers

1 DFS Squadron/Troop of Vehicles
1 DFS Squadron/Troop of Cavalry types

1 Arty Battery of Guns/Mortars/Missiles
1 Arty Battery of Gunners

Small number of extras to cover U/S kit and LOB bodies.

Support and Sustainment

Similar to Assault force but a higher percentage of extra kit and bodies due to higher usage rates.

This would include Engineers and Medical types

While 3 pieces of kit are necessary to fill demand a 4th is  brought in to cover U/S needs similar to the Recce and Cmd functions.

Manning requirements here may be different than in either Assault or Recce type forces.  They don't need to work 24/7 but at the same time they are going to work at their primary task everyday, unlike the Assault Force types and they still have to be ready to support the Assault Force when it acts.  Lets say the need is for 1 troop to meet daily needs and another to be able to fill the gaps and cover emergencies.

Summary

Command and Patrol elements

Ratio of Deployed Kit to Tasked Kit,    4:3
Ratio of Deployed Tps to Tasked Tps,   4:1

Sustainment elements

Ratio of Deployed Kit to Tasked Kit,   4:3
Ratio of Deployed Tps to Tasked Tps,    2:1

Assault elements

Ratio of Deployed Kit to Tasked Kit,   1:1
Ratio of Deployed Tps to Tasked Tps,    1:1
*Depending on threat level perhaps it would be appropriate to leave a modest in-theatre U/S-LOB reserve.

What this means for force structure generally is that  Sigs Platoons and Recce Troops need to become Squadrons with respect to manning while roughly maintaining current kitting practices.

Engineers, Loggies, Medics etc need to add 2x the bodies for the necessary kit.

Infantry, Arty and DFS Squadrons could stand pat with 1 crew, 1 system generally speaking.

Where do the extra bodies come from?

Rebalancing roles, tasks undertaken by the government and determination of available kit.

Lunacy ends.  Have at it.

Cheers.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 24, 2005, 23:47:15
I have had an epiphany with this idea. We need to come up with a means of achieving the goal without to many changes to current organizations and structures, and with minimum wishful thinking about kit or purchasing templates.

The minimum viable size for a Cavalry formation is a Canadian Cavalry Brigade Group, which uses the same units and numbers currently found in a CMBG. The primary difference between the two formations are the formation of Cavalry teams as permanent groupings of Infantry, Armour, Artillery and Engineers. (Current numbers don't give an exact match, but this is the starting point). Service and support elements will be evolved to support widely separated and fast moving Cavalry teams in operations.

Since sub and sub sub units would always train together, they will develop a higher level of cohesion and teamwork than is currently possible. There is nothing to prevent members of the Cavalry teams from forming social networks in garrison as well, such as sports teams, to maintain and strengthen the bonds.

Units in this scenario would resemble UEs in the American Objective Force model, being responsible for training and developing the soldiers under their command. Regimental officers and NCOs would have the hard job of creating challenging training to ensure their troops are able to make their contributions to the Cavalry team. The position of Cavalry team commander would be highly coveted, and open to all (although Infantry and Armoured officers would probably be best suited for the job).

CCBG HQ would have some units and subunits directly under their control, such as the Recce and Surveillance squadrons, UAVs, Helicopter Squadron and ISTAR CC. For administrative purposes, many of these would be held by a parent Regiment or Battalion, for training and personell management issues.

Since there are two LAV battalions in the current brigade structure, one would absorb most of the resources to create the Cavalry teams, leaving the other to be trained for rear area security, enhanced patrolling, or even limited exploitation in a conventional scenario. Every few years, the roles might be switched, accepting the loss of proficiency and learning curve periods involved. I would argue the LIB would be an important part of the CCBG, giving the commander unique abilities to operate in complex terrain, although it can also be argued the LIBs should be grouped together to create a "Light Brigade".

"Neutering" the roles of Regimental and Battalion headquarters would free some resources for the CCBG HQ, such as recce platoons, while other positions might be judiciously eliminated to provide PYs for manning and training members of the Cavalry teams.

The longer term result of this proposal would be to allow Cavalry operations to be practiced in training and operations, resulting in the refinement of Cavalry doctrine, modification of ORBATS, and the selection of new generations of equipment better suited to the needs of the Cavalry Brigade.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on January 25, 2005, 00:17:19
Kirkhill,

You are right that going 24/7 for six months is impossible, but having four crews for each Coyote might not be the best way to deal with the problem.  Our Coyotes generally spent three days out of four deployed outside the camp.  Many of these tasks were OPs, so the vehicles were always manned.  I can remember several weeks were every crew was deployed with their vehicles.  We certainly could have used an extra Patrol of personnel to account for HLTA (the three week leave block), so I do support having some surplus personnel (or at least an HLTA period surge of additional soldiers).

The UK Coy deployed on three month tours with no leave periods.  I saw some definate merits in this, although I do not know if our Army could sustain it.

AMajoor,

I do envision the Cavalry as a way to employ our current equipment and structures in a meaningful way without having to change everything and buy all new kit.  I don't know if we need to have a Brigade as the minimum "formation."  A Cav Task Force of "Battalion/Regiment" size could support a Div or even a Bde of coalition troops.  Given our current army I think that a Bde deployment is a bit ambitious.  That being said we could certainly extend the Cavalry concept to Bde level (a bit like an ACR).  In addition, if we want to have lots of UAVs and other kit then maybe we do need a Bde HQ with a Cav unit and an ISTAR unit under it.  Food for thought.

I do not see the need to "neuter" the Battalion and Regt HQs.  Indeed, the unit-sized Cav Task Force would be based on either a LAV III or Armoured Bn/Regt HQ.  I certainly see the Cavalry line command positions as going to either Armoured or Infantry officers (or some unholy blend of both MOCs  >:D).

My biggest question is whether I go for mixed sub-units (LAVs and Coyotes) or "pure." 

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 25, 2005, 00:47:17
You are right about deploying an entire CCBG being at the far end of possibilities, but I think there are several reasons to argue for a formation of this size.

Kirkhill's notion of building in a surge capacity to a formation is almost automatic when you have an entire brigade. A battlegroup built around several Cavalry teams can be deployed, and one or two Cavalry teams worth of personell and equipment is still availible to cover HLTA, emergency surge deployments or local DOMOPS situations for the Brigade. (The shortfalls would be in the specialist subunits, which are Brigade assets by nature).

A CCBG will also have a large "gene pool" of officers, NCOs and soldiers, which gives a larger base for manning, training, skill development and "corporate memory" than a small "Cav" unit tucked away in the hanger line. Also this provides a better resolution of the "see" and "act" functions, since dedicated recce and surveillance assets are associated with the CCBG HQ, while the Cavalry teams do the up close work and provide limited combat power if required.

A bigger unit will also have more boots available for manpower intensive taskings, so the CCBG is more versatile when dealing with the wide range of potential taskings we can face, especially DOMOPS, shovelling snow in TO, or PSO and "Three Block War" scenarios.

It is true that current battlegroups are commanded by the "core" Regiment or Battalion of the battlegroup, but the permanent nature of the Cavalry team as opposed to the more ad hoc groupings of a combat team makes that sort of superfluous, the CCBG HQ would provide the elements to stitch together the Cavalry battlegroup. The ISTAR CC is probably the core of the CCBHQ and will be used to coordinate the actions of the CCBG or the associated Cavalry battlegroups or Cavalry teams anyway, so it makes sense for the ISTAR CC to be the "deployable" headquarters element.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on January 25, 2005, 03:49:28
Looking but not finding....story of my life these days

The French have a Light Armd Airborne Recce Regiment, I think it is the 5th Para Hussards and IIRC they are armed with either Panhard 90's or ERC 90s and VBLs.  They are organized in 3 Recce Squadrons with the 90mm Armd Vehicles and an Anti-Tank Squadron with Milans and HMGs on VBLs.  They also have an Active force dismounted Squadron and a Reserve force dismounted Squadron to keep the Regiment viable.  I will try to confirm this.

I agree that a 4:1 ratio may not necessarily be the correct ratio, probably overkill, as you say there are other strategies but I think we could all agree that a degree of overmanning would probably be in everyone's interest.  It will be especially critical as weapons systems become more complex.

Going way outside my arc (as if that has ever stopped me) I think the gunners effectively already overman their guns as a matter of course.  The LG1 and the C3 are both manned by a 7-man section/det/what-have-you but can be fired by only 3 men if the circumstances require it.  In Blackburn's books (Where are the Guns series - can't remember which one) he describes an incident where a battery was tasked to supply harassing fire.  The whole battery was asleep with the exception of one man on one gun methodically ejecting, loading, laying, firing, repeating, drawing rounds from a prepared stock.  While I don't mean to suggest that every LAV necessarily should have a 12-man section just to supply 4 Dr/Gnr/CC crews - excluding GIBs ......

On the other hand LAVIIIs with an all Blackhat crew of 9 - 3 crews double hatted Both LAV crew qualified and dismount section?   Naaah, never work.

Thinking out loud here....

 
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on January 25, 2005, 09:27:05
On the other hand LAVIIIs with an all Blackhat crew of 9 - 3 crews double hatted Both LAV crew qualified and dismount section? Naaah, never work.

Thinking out loud here....


That would be called:  "Assault Troop"

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on January 25, 2005, 12:35:34
Thanks again George.  I can always rely on you to set things plain.

So it could be done?  I'm guessing you think it should be done.  How about the French concept with the Squadron of Dismounted Crews?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on January 25, 2005, 18:06:13
It seems we discussed something like this in another thread, creating a formation modeled after a "demi brigade"; but with so many threads and forums to sort through.....I will stand by the CCBG model for now.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 01, 2005, 23:41:13
I twigged  on this after posting to another thread: the true Cavalry today is no longer mounted on vehicles but rather on aircraft. (Hardly an original thought, true)

The ratio of speed between mechanized and motor troops is not really all that great, it is more a matter of degree than kind: mech forces have better cross country mobility, while motor forces have better road mobility. The addition of heavy wheeled transporters closes the gap in terms of administrative road moves, and it may even be possible that advanced technology like "band tracks" could allow AFVs to do long road marches, approaching the ability of a Marine LAV or Army SBCT to displace 100km in a single night.

The ratio of speeds between aircraft and ground vehicles is probably closer to the ratio of speed between marching infantry and horse cavalry in the past. The flanking, screening and patrolling roles of the Cavalry would be much better performed by fast moving troops mounted on helicopters or some sort of VTOL aircraft. Like the Cavalry forces under discussion earlier in this thread, the Airmobile Cavalry would only have a limited "act" capability, but the ability to provide sensor coverage over the AOR and supplement it by landing foot patrols on or near areas of interest would be "second to none".

This is really an "Air Cavalry Light" option, which could be implemented using Griffons, say one flight with ERSTA suites, one flight carrying recce patrols and one flight kitted with "self defense packages" (say 4X Hellfire and 2 X Stinger), although we could all hope for better platforms to be selected in the place of the Griffin. The other down side to this idea is by consuming the tac air squadron from the brigade, the other duties of the tac air squadron are unfilled, unless the government commits to buying 100 more Bell 412's and painting them green....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 02, 2005, 02:49:35
One big difference I see.  The Guy on Horseback?  He can stop, get off and have a look around, hopefully without the other guy seeing him.  Difficult to do from fast air. Still pretty difficult from rotary wings (OK so they have a video camera - that helps - but not quite as stealthy as Zipper on his faithful steed).
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 02, 2005, 11:22:47
Sneaking up on someone with a Coyote is probably a bit tricky as well.

There are ways to make "Air Cav" or "Air Cav Light" have a smaller footprint, such as adding surveillance and ground attack UAVs as part of the unit, or deploying the foot patrols by parachute, foot or vehicle and doing the P/U by helicopter for example. The key element I am trying to get at is the key element of Cavalry in the past was speed, and in todays world, airmobility provides more of a differential than wheeled or tracked vehicles. The high mobility and ability to approach from any direction gives an airmobile unit far more of an edge in scouting, screening, flanking and rear security than a wheeled unit which is mostly restricted by the terrain.

Food for thought.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Lance Wiebe on February 02, 2005, 11:52:34
I, along with all of you, am anxiously waiting the defense review.  I honestly think that the illusion of the "capable of general warfare" and "alongside the best, against the best" will be totally ignored, lost, and/or forgotten.

With our land forces being stuck in wheeled vehicles, we will certainly be of no use in the assault, or really, in truly modern mobile battlefield.  The wheels simply have to many limitations when taken off road.  It may raise the hackles on many supporters of the Coyote/LAV III, but these vehicles can only really be used in limited roles, and these roles do not include reconnaissance as we know it. 

The new light army will surely be capable of providing a screen, using our surveillance suites.

As mentioned, convoy escort, and similar duties, such as route patrolling, are well within our capabilities.

Rear area security will be a breeze.

In my own, not so humble opinion, our new "improved" army will be highly capable of supporting true combat capable higher formations that belong to our allies.  The only other task that we will be capable of is the tasks that we are conducting right now, such as Kabul.  Trying to figure out a way that we would be a viable, independent force on a modern battlefield is futility, I think.  With no armour, no air support from either rotary or fixed wing, no air defense, and limited mobility, our days of operating anywhere under national command is something we will only see in the history books.

It's unfortunate, but we seem to have subjugated our ability to use force on a battlefield to one of "meet the requirements of the United Nations."
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 02, 2005, 14:13:34
AMajoor,

Air Cavarly certainly has some advantages but I see as part of the whole Cavalry concept and not the whole show.  US Divisional Cavalry Squadrons had a mix of ground Troops (sub-units) and air Troops (helicopters) when I was down South (it may have changed).  Air Troops with Kiowa Warriors give the CO the ability to quickly cover areas and when working with ground scouts can be a formidable team. 

Helicopters working on their own in a Cavalry role, however, would have some disadvantages.  First off there is the endurance factor.  Helos cannot operate indefinately.  A Coyote Patrol can be told to watch an NAI for days at time, while helos will have to work in a rotation.  Using helos to bring in infantry for patrols, OPs etc is an advantage, but once the helicopters fly away the guys on the ground are pretty much on their own.  Cavalry in Coyotes, LAVs or any other ground vehicle have one thing in common with the old-school cavalry in that their mounts stay close when they dismount.  The speed of Cavalry troops once their choppers have left is pretty slow. 

Another issue is vulnerability.  Coyotes and LAVs are certainly vulnerable, but helicopters working on their own can become isolated when they get shot down or have mechanical failures.  This leads to a host of problems (Blackhawk Down).  At least a ground based Cavalry force has help immediately at hand in the form of other combat systems and forward moving CSS.  Aviation also has severe limitations in the urban environment.

Before the airforce guys jump all over me I do firmly believe that aviation is useful!  I am all for an integrated Cavalry Task Force that could include aviation assets.  I'd love to have access to OH-58Ds for scouting and CH-47s for lift/resupply.  Air assault etc is a whole other ball of wax, so to speak, and is sometimes the only way to get troops around an area of operations.

Lance,

I think that a Canadian Army consisting of a Light Force and a Cavalry Force could still make meaningful contributions to coalition warfighting in the sorts of roles you mention.  The Cavalry role allows us to be an important component of a Coalition formation.  Without tanks, arty and the other assets you mention we are certainly precluded from our traditional warfighting roles (ie a CMBG slogging it out with some enemy).   I do think that we could also conduct reconnaissance in front of a moving force, but I admit that I am a Coyote believer and recognize that I am somewhat alone in that position here!   :warstory:

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 02, 2005, 14:19:45
Quote
but I admit that I am a Coyote believer and recognize that I am somewhat alone in that position here!   

For what it's worth, not entirely alone...

Cheers.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 02, 2005, 14:22:35
Sneaking up on someone with a Coyote is probably a bit tricky as well.

There are ways to make "Air Cav" or "Air Cav Light" have a smaller footprint, such as adding surveillance and ground attack UAVs as part of the unit, or deploying the foot patrols by parachute, foot or vehicle and doing the P/U by helicopter for example. The key element I am trying to get at is the key element of Cavalry in the past was speed, and in todays world, airmobility provides more of a differential than wheeled or tracked vehicles. The high mobility and ability to approach from any direction gives an airmobile unit far more of an edge in scouting, screening, flanking and rear security than a wheeled unit which is mostly restricted by the terrain.

Food for thought.

I do think we could use Air Cav.   I would most likely make it Infantry Heavy, making our Light Inf Bns Air Mobile, rather than wheeled.

I disagree with your above thoughts on Recce and Surveillance.   There is no way that these Helios will be able to stay on station long enough to do effective Recce or Surveillance.   It would have to be only used in the Advance or Withdrawl, but would not be effective in a Screen or any other long term Surveillance task.   Wheeled or tracked (the better solution) Recce Vehicles would be better, as they would be able to use more stealth.   Aircraft move too much and attract too much attention in this case.   Heliborne troops would loose the ability to use their sense of hearing while airborne.   Many enemy would be able to seek cover and avoid detection when they hear a flight approaching.


I would truly like to see our Army get more Choppers.   I think that they would provide more versitility for our forces on the Battlefield.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 02, 2005, 16:18:57
An Air Cav Light squadron as part of the larger CCBG concept is certainly the ideal way to go, and I have no argument with the need for the long term endurance that vehicle assets can give. (I wrote about this in a somewhat different context in the ADTB http://armyapp.dnd.ca/ael/adtb/vol_5/adtb_vol5no4_e.pdf).

Only an all out "Air Cavalry" equipped with attack (oh, excuse me, "armed") helicopters and a robust logistics train including heavy lift helicopters can be expected to maintain a presence on the battlfield for a long time, or to successfully perform the "act" function. Adding the "Air Cavalry Light" option to our mix increases the speed ratio between "Cavalry" formations and other units, but still has many of the same limitations leading to a "sense" rather than an "act" bias. Keeping this in mind will provide a very useful capability to a Cavalry formation.

So the big question now for 2B is: when are you presenting the staff paper?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on February 02, 2005, 16:29:37
Since we're considering an "Air Cav" mix for the combined-arms "Cavalry" team, should we maybe consider the famous Aero-Rifles, the 9th Cavalry Regiment, of the (Vietnam-Era) First Cavalry Division.   A truly combined-arms formation, it had "Teams" - Red, White, and Blue - of which one was an Air-Assault Infantry, one was Attack Helos, and one was Recce Helos.   Anyone who has seen the famous "Apocalypse Now" scene with Col Killgore's Air Cav?   This is the unit the movie is referring to.

Could we fashion something like this for inclusion in the Canadian Cavalry Concept?

An Air Cavalry Squadron would have a Headquarters Troop.   As well, there would be three tactical units:

- An Air-Assault Troop, which would contain 4 Helos each with a section of Infantry soldiers.
- An Air-Attack Troop, which would contain 4 Helos configured for ground attack
- An Air-Recce Troop, which may contain a mix of Surveillance equipped Helos and UAV's.

For Airframes, ideal airframes would be UH-60's for Air-Assault, UH-1Z's for Air-Attack, and perhaps the Kiowa mixed with UAV's for Air-Recce.   Now, putting down the Monopoly money and sticking to the "Canadian Cavalry" principle of using kit that is On-Hand in the next 5 years:

If it were possible to upgrade the Gearbox and Rotormast on our Griffon fleet (as Inch seems to allude to on this thread (http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,24926.15.html)) perhaps we could up the power specs and get over the most severe shortcomings of the platform.

A Griffon utilizing that swank engine performance could most likely be used for its modularity, allowing it to fullfill the troop carrier role as well as a stand-off attack mode with Hellfire or Minigun stations.   A suite of UAV's could be used for the Recce roll, minimising the logistical footprint of the squadron (say, 8 helos in the troops, a command helo and a spare in the HQ troop, and 4-6 UAV's).

An Air Assault Squadron configured like this could be embedded into a Cavalry Structure, allowing the Ground/Air team to leapfrog or work together, or allowing the Ground Cavalry to work in close operations while the Air team moves to Deep Operations.

Just an idea for the mix....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 03, 2005, 00:14:58
Art,

I really should get down, stop tinkering and finish... :P

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 03, 2005, 01:09:23
Don't forget to list your fellow posters in the acknowlegements section. Then we can brag about how it was really us who created the Canadian Armoured Cavalry.

This might be our chance to get the MMM  ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 08, 2005, 02:37:26
As one of the detractors to this mode of thinking, I will say it was a very good presentation and sure, why not. Get it published.

However, it still has a lot of dreaming involved helicopter wise. Is there a hope in hell of Air Cav? Probably as much chance of a Marine type unit.

What worries me (a little conspiracy theorizing here), is those at NDHQ who may actually read these threads and be rubbing there hands together going...         ..."Their buying it! Excellent. We'll continue to lighten our forces until there of absolutely no use as anything other then heavier armed police. My masters on the Hill will love me, and give me a promotion.".

Yeah I know. Drama Queen.

But it does seem to me that we are continually being ordered to lower our capabilities and liking it. With this threads idea, we will only be useful in other nations formations and thus subject to their requirements. If we do that, whats next? The Gov lowering the budget even more and getting rid of all combat capabilities to the States? Then we only need supply support services? Hell, we're doing mostly that now.

Sigh
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 08, 2005, 11:04:32
The unfortunate outcome of making our Army lighter, is that it may become more expensive in the long run.

When we start talking of Light fighting troops, Armoured as well as Infantry and Arty, we are being very shortsighted.  Sure they will not have Heavy Armour anymore and we are saving in equipment purchases that way, but how do we move these new troops around the battlefield?  We need Airlift.  I wonder if it is cheaper to fly a large fleet of CH 53 PavLow choppers or a fleet of Armoured Vehicles?  What are the Maintenance costs and times involved with Heliborne equipment compared to Armoured vehicles? 

This is what gets me about all the decisions coming out of NDHQ and the Government.  Decisions to save a buck today, but that will cost us hundreds tomorrow.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 08, 2005, 11:26:52

What worries me (a little conspiracy theorizing here), is those at NDHQ who may actually read these threads and be rubbing there hands together going... ..."Their buying it! Excellent. We'll continue to lighten our forces until there of absolutely no use as anything other then heavier armed police. My masters on the Hill will love me, and give me a promotion.".


But it does seem to me that we are continually being ordered to lower our capabilities and liking it. With this threads idea, we will only be useful in other nations formations and thus subject to their requirements. If we do that, whats next? The Gov lowering the budget even more and getting rid of all combat capabilities to the States? Then we only need supply support services? heck, we're doing mostly that now.


If thats what the secret readers are thinking, they are not reading very closely. We are changing the way we think, the way we use equipment and manpower and the organizations that control and employ the assets to wring the maximum  "bang" out of the buck. While (to tie some other threads together),in the short term, we may not get an effective MGS with a 75mm high velocity cannon, or MMEV firing 10+km ranged FOG-Ms, or "Air Cav Light" with armed helicopters, by thinking about it now, we can control the parameters of the debate and direct future thinking towards more effective solutions.

(Damn, did I say that out loud?)
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on February 08, 2005, 17:41:11
It is certainly better to be proactive in thought and ideas with the realities of what you have then to simply give up and say "what's the point, we don't have X".  As professionals, we can't afford to do that and if it takes some serious "Out of the Box" thinking to avoid it, then so be it.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 08, 2005, 21:38:23
Again, no argument on those two points. Thinking out of the box is fine. Its buying into the boxes that scares me.

Again, I have to agree with George. The long term costs are something to consider. I honestly, I just did...                ...scary.

With the idea of thinking outside the box and going over to lighter vehicles and such. Are we paying for these things in extra lives since each vehicle does not have the survivability that even a slightly heavier tracked vehicle may? I'm not talking about heavy MBT's, but I believe Majoor is big on the CV-90?

As well by getting rid of our heavier on the move DF systems in the Leo, and going over to this layered idea, are we not actually raising the cost of each round? As far as I know a TOW missile costs a hell of alot more then a 105mm round, or even a 120mm for that matter? Also, these missile mounted vehicles are only able to get maybe 2 shots off before they need to reload, which then takes them off the line. Not to mention the fact that being light armoured vehicles that have to sit there until their missiles hit makes them rather vulnerable to pretty much any counter fire, including arty.

And I am not even going to go into this 8km direct fire idea. How many places in the world are we realistically going to be able to have a chance of doing this? Besides Saskachewan and maybe Hwy 400 going towards Windsor and like places (hill tops in Afghanistan?), the ranges we'll end up in contact with the enemy will be alot less. And if we can hit them? They can sure as hell hit us.

It all sounds pretty scary to me.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 08, 2005, 22:02:34
And I am not even going to go into this 8km direct fire idea. How many places in the world are we realistically going to be able to have a chance of doing this? Besides Saskachewan and maybe Hwy 400 going towards Windsor and like places (hill tops in Afghanistan?), the ranges we'll end up in contact with the enemy will be alot less. And if we can hit them? They can sure as hell hit us.

Damn it!  I knew it.  Years ago I said that we should not look at the successes of the First Gulf War to become the latest in War Game Strategies.  It is truly a bad model to get trapped into formulating future Combat.  It was fought by a well equiped but questionably lacking Army of Iraq  and a vastly superior Army of the more technicallly advanced and better trained Armies of the Coalition.  It was fought, for the majority, in a desert with few obstructions of vision and fire.  I look at it as a textbook "TableTop" war, fought basically on a flat 'playing surface'.  I would say that any lessons learned would only apply to ideal and identical situations; such as Gulf War II.  This type of war would not be able to be fought in Africa, Asia, Europe or the Americas. 

Zipper asks a good point - Where are we likely to employ a ground weapons system that is lightly armoured and can continually find fire positions that will give it 7 to 8 Km ranges?  I could see an airborne weapons system being effective that way, but not a ground mounted system.  At most, I would say that most ground systems would find their average maximum ranges would only stretch out to 2 - 4 Km.

Is the ADATs a false starter, an attempt to redefine an AA system into a Ground Defence role?

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 08, 2005, 22:43:33
Long range weapons systems like ADATS are not likely to find a good firing position in anyplace besides Suffield, which explains my support for N-LOS systems like HELLFIRE, BRIMESTONE or FOG-M, which can cover 8 or more km through the use of a scout/forward observer to identify the target, then can fly in under command of a forward observer, seek the target autonomosly, or be steered in by operator command.

Missile systems have advantages (can course correct to the moment of impact, and carry large or multiple warheads) which make them good compliments to a gun system. It is unfortunate we seem to be tied to some of the lesser lights in the missile department, but there are work arounds.

Zipper and GW raise some good points, but as Infanteer says, we can't just throw up our hands and walk away. We may just have to tear the lid off the box and flood the interior with light instead....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 08, 2005, 23:55:24
ARGH!! The light, it burns! it burns!!! Nasty Light! ( I think Gollum said something to the effect?)

Sorry.

Agreed that missile systems have their place, and that N-LOS would be very handy. ADATS on the other hand should be kept with the Air Defense Batteries.

How we "tear the lid off" is another question? As per another thread, I am still not sure where our CDS lands on all this? I guess we'll just have to wait until the policy comes out. Not that the Gov just wouldn't ignore him if he decided to voice his full concerns.

Sigh


Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 17, 2005, 23:16:31
I was just remembering on another thread that the US army had some very "mixed" units during the first Persian Gulf War in 91. We received a briefing from an American Captain who's Infantry Company consisted of 16 M-2s and 25 HEMMET trucks carrying the fuel and consumables. This conglomeration moved under combat conditions to cut the Basra-Bhagdad highway, and I am not sure if the thought of contacting elements of the Republican Guard or loosing the truck convoy would have been more unnerving.

Perhaps this is the real means of delivering an effective "Cavalry" formation is the development of some form of "embedded CSS" , with a LAV III "Bison" version to carry the supplies in the front line (admin troop/platoon), and some very nimble C3I at the admin/support level of the Cavalry formation to keep things running. Technological edges, like modular vehicle magazines, high capacity fuel transfer systems and advanced mobility to increase the fuel economy of the vehicles is also important, but more a matter of degree than kind.

Re reading a lot of the thread, we all seem to have been absorbed with focusing on the pointy end, but not giving enough attention to the rest of the structure.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 17, 2005, 23:49:18
Your right. We haven't paid much attention to the support part. I guess with the pointy end in such terrible shape, (and more glamerous) that it gets taken for granted far to often.

You have some interesting ideas. I wonder how much it would take as far as further vehicle purchases as well as development of your modular ideas for it to even be considered? Otherwise it is a good idea.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 18, 2005, 00:09:22
Read on: http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,25555.240.html
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 18, 2005, 00:14:22
Just a thought.

Maybe there are lessons to be learned from the South Africans and their excursions.   I believe they did some long range wheeled ops.  That was the battlefield the Rooikat wheeled DFSV and the G6 wheeled 155mm SP howitzer were developed for.  As well as the Mamba, Nyala and the Buffalo??.

How did they support their strikes?  The Aussie Bushmaster, eg, carries a lot of its supplies, including a large water reservoir, on board.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 18, 2005, 16:24:25
Kirkhill

The pictures of the AMX-10RC on the Direct Fire Support thread had actually got me thinking about the South Africans and there versions of the Eland armoured cars.  I'm glad you brought this up here.  I served with a fellow who had been in the South African army in the Eland-90 armoured cars.  These were basically small 4-wheeled armoured cars with a 90mm gun.  They apparently did well against infantry, T-34/85s and even T-55s and the odd truck.  I'm not sure if the 90mm offers any advantages over the 25mm Bushmaster but I have been wondering if a conventional turreted 90mm for the LAV might be more workable than the 105 mm low profile turret. 
 
The wheeled SP versions of their G5 gun could be a good fit with the Armoured Cavarly.  Their long range would be an asset to a dispered and fast-moving Cavalry force.

A mobile combined-arms cavarly force has much to offer as long as it is employed for the right role and the South African experience sheds some light on how to go about it.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 18, 2005, 16:39:45
AMajoor,

You are absolutely correct to bring up the the CSS part.  Given that the framework of Deep, Close and Rear is not always relevant we do need to approach CSS from a different perspective.  How about having all the soldiers driving the CSS vehs around being combat arms soldiers?  At a minimum the CSS soldiers must be well drilled in their part of warfighting (and I think that we are moving in this direction).

I like the Armoured Sqn echelons as they have some AFVs mixed in with some very senior Crewmen (the SSM for one) present.  Perhaps this needs to be expanded to the rest.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 18, 2005, 16:54:18
2 Bravo:

Last night I looked up an old copy of Jane's   that I had and found the following

The front end of their army seemed to be based on the Panhard Eland 90 and the Oliphant version of the Centurion.

Behind that they had a wheeled force that seems to have been largely responsible for their "Expeditions" into Namibia and Angola

Their vehicles had long range, lots of seats and carried their water and fuel with them in large part.

Basic fighting vehicle was the Ratel, an armoured 6x6 truck with wheels configured like the Grizzly (2+4).   It carried up to 11 crew, regardless of configuration and had a 1000 km range.

Configurations included:

IFVs with a 20mm turret or a 60mm turreted mortar and 7 dismounts.
FSVs had a 90mm turret and could still carry 7 dismounts
CMD with 12.7mm
ATGW
81mm mor
Recovery.

Depth Fire Support was supplied by the G6 wheeled 155mm - also a 6x6 (2+4) configuration.

The logistics train was based on the Casspir.   That high mounted 4x4 with the V-Shaped hull to protect from mines.   All versions retained the v-hull and the armoured cabin.   The Troop Carriers were fully armoured.

Casspir Versions:

Casspir APC for 1+12
Armoured Cargo Carrier (Blesbok)
Armoured Fuel Tanker (Duiker)
Armoured Recovery (Gemsbok)
Armoured Ambulance
Arty Fire Control
Mine Clearance
Mine Sensors

These have been backed up by the Rooikat 8x8 with a turreted 76mm (I believe this is related to the IMI and Otomelara 60mm HVM and the Otomelara 76mm naval gun used on our frigates)

As well they incorporate the Mamba.

The dominant characteristics appear to be range, armour, mine protection, spare seats, self-sufficiency, long-range engagement over protection.   (The 90mm FSV and the Casspirs would be hard pressed to find a hull down position).

And if I am not mistaken they ended up engaging some older vintage tanks in their excursions (T-34s and T-55s probably - maybe the odd 62 or 64?)

Just more grist for the mill.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 18, 2005, 22:17:57
The LAV III chassis is quite roomy, and a combination of clever repackaging of existing systems and some advanced technology (Hybrid drive, for example) would make carrying extra supplies and taking extended range jaunts relatively easy. Integral or embedded CSS would solve the other piece of the puzzel (keeping the momentum going), but I hope some logisticians could weigh in with suggestions, since my hand waving isn't getting any rabbits out of the hat.....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 18, 2005, 23:06:10
Using the LAV platform could you go back to a 4 man in the back of the turreted LAV - more space for water, fuel and grub;  your Bison variant as a Logistics/Troop carrier (maybe even add some windows in the back) and possibly even your pick-up truck flat-bed variant?

Can the LAVs be mineproofed to a greater extent than they are now? Say taken from a 2-3 kg mine threat to a 7 kg level?

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 19, 2005, 00:03:24
I would say that fuel is the big issue, followed by water, spare parts and other sundries.  Bigger fuel resevoirs and extra jerry cans can extend the range of a force but eventually somebody has to bring the fuel forward.  Our FARs (tactical tanker trucks which I think were designed for helos but I could be wrong) are efficient but do make a good target.  I think that the key is to make our echelons able to fight and protect themselves.  It is our centre of gravity right now, IMHO, and the answer is making the CSS elements self-sufficient in terms of defending themselves.

I do like the idea of armoured echelon vehicles.  Our current CSS doctrine was designed in WW II with front lines etc.  To me, the crew of the CSS vehicles are far more important than their cargo and are the real target of our potential enemies.  The old drill of driving through the ambush to "get the supplies through" is not an option to me.  Not saying that you stop in the kill zone, but the convoy has to fight back and not leave ANYBODY behind.  In addition, the CSS soldiers who travel the roads are just as likely to be under attack as the combat arms guys "on patrol." 

Not to get into war stories again, but in Kabul we kept a four-vehicle OP running for over a month without an echelon.  Due to the nature of the ground we left the vehicles in place and rotated crews.  We did not have any integral CSS to the Company.  The NSE were very cooperative but bringing a FAR up to the OP every couple of days was not the best option.  We did have a Bison RRB vehicle; however, and an SSM who could improvise.  Not many seats inside but we could stuff it full of diesel jerry cans, IMPs and cases of bottled water.  It performed stirling service as an ersatz echelon vehicle.   :warstory:  As AMajoor suggests, a LAV version of the M548 might well be in order.


Kirkhill,

I'm not sure about the possibilities of further LAV/Coyote mineproofing (I'm a bit like Oddball in Kelly's Heroes, I just ride the things and don't know how they work!).  I'd rather not make the Coyote/LAV any taller (like the South African mineproofed vehicles) but perhaps the engineers can come up with something workable. 

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 19, 2005, 01:44:15
All of these ideas are great. And I think the Esh. concepts forming here are very workable.

However should we compare our needs so closely with that of S. Africa? Yes, they are probably one of the best wheeled forces out there. But their terrain and deployment tends to favour wheeled vehicles for the most part. They are not widely deployed to other countries with numerous allies, in varying terrain.

Just a note. Otherwise they are probably the best to take examples from.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 19, 2005, 23:56:38
Some of our Log friends are also thinking along these lines just next door: http://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,4273.0.html.

The next big change I can forsee is to really tie the CSS into the unit somehow. They can be integral (CCBG concept) or "embedded" (Cavalry as a Bn/Regimental sized unit), but it has to be much more robust than an umbilical cord trailing behind the lead elements.

The South Africans were participating in long range operations where the force to space ratios were quite low, large vehicles were and are appropriate because they are "self contained" to a certain extent, able to carry extended supplies, sufficient armour and still pack a punch. Considerations like being air transportable in a C-130 were moot, since they were just a long road move away from the action. IF we put the air mobility thing out of our heads and accept we may have to drive in from a beachhead/railhead, then things become easier for us as well.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 20, 2005, 00:48:24
Deployed Canadian Task Forces will tend to have disproportionate CSS arrangements because we do not deploy over a battalion-
sized yet still need all the bits and pieces found in a Brigade level support unit.  We also like to over-insure our CSS, and in this we are not alone.

Within the Cavalry Task Force I see Squadron/Company echelons along our traditional lines.  There would also be a CSS sub-unit that I would like to see resembling our current HQ Sqn or Inf Bn Admin Coy.  The tricky part is that this Task Force will be working for a coalition formation that may not be in a position to provide support on Canadian-unique items.  This means that we will need an NSE of some kind that perhaps dovetails into the Division or Brigade sustainment organization. It won't be pretty but I guess it is the cost of doing business.

Going back to first principles regarding CSS, one way to reduce the burden is to lessen the "demand."  In the book The March Up describing the USMC's part of the intiatial phases of OIF the concept of "Loglight" was discussed.  Apparantly the senior USMC commander had his people take a good hard look at what was really essential and forced the Div to lighten its load.  One notable decision was the lightening of artillery ammunition loads.  If you have air supremacy and effective air to ground communication this becomes an attractive option.  The bottom line is that they did not "overinsure" their CSS to enable them to move quickly without overextending their supply lines.  I'd like the Armoured Cavalry to adopt something along these lines.  Since we should be avoiding pitched battles on mobile ops we should not need tons of 25mm, 105mm and TOW ammunition in our log trains.  Fuel, water, food, spare parts and medical evac should be our priorities (not necessarily in that order).

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 20, 2005, 02:11:57
One notable decision was the lightening of artillery ammunition loads. If you have air supremacy and effective air to ground communication this becomes an attractive option. The bottom line is that they did not "overinsure" their CSS to enable them to move quickly without overextending their supply lines. I'd like the Armoured Cavalry to adopt something along these lines. Since we should be avoiding pitched battles on mobile ops we should not need tons of 25mm, 105mm and TOW ammunition in our log trains. Fuel, water, food, spare parts and medical evac should be our priorities (not necessarily in that order).

Good ideas. But one notable question? Are we sure we are moving in a Armoured Cavalry direction? Or are you referring to USMC formations?

As well the idea of carring less ammunition is a good one. But will we have plans for those supplies to be not far behind? The idea of us avoiding pitched battles is fine. You'll just have to tell that to the other side (whoever they may be) before we go over. I would think that your idea would be very "mission" specific, and with enough flexibility built in to respond to circumstances that may not go our way.
 
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 20, 2005, 13:13:29
Zipper,

I am proposing that we head for a Canadian Armoured Cavarly and not a USMC or US Army unit.   That being said, I was influenced by both the US Army and USMC due to courses with the US Army (which had Marine officers on them) and an exercise with the USMC on which I went as an exchange officer.   If we want to have global mobility the USMC does offer some insights.   In addition, their LAR battalions (equipped with the LAV-25 family) have lots of experience and can also offer some lessons for us.   I'm not suggesting that we simply copy the US Army or USMC (or any other nation's military), but rather that we look around for ideas that have relevance for us and perhaps adapt some of them.   We would still be Canadian and would have some unique outlooks.

Reducing the amount of artillery and other ammunition is a calculated risk.   The Cavarly Task Force should be able to fight a short pitched battle in a defensive mode.   I do not see the vehicles expending all their ammo, however, as the heavy fighting will be left for the follow-on coalition forces that would be right behind us.   We would still have ammunition in our echelon, but perhaps not as much as we planned to carry for battles against the Warsaw Pact.   Any integral fire support (mortars or guns) for the Cavalry would only fire to enable us to disengage and would not be firing prolonged bombardments in support of a deliberate attack.   Just like Buford's action at Gettysburg was only to cover the deployment of the main Union forces, so would this Cavalry only fight to cover the supported formation and not as the "main event."

Going back even farther in history, part of the Blitzkrieg theory was the use of airpower as a substitute (or supplement) to artillery.   This only works, of course. if we have air superiority or supremacy.   Not to be complacent, but I think that this condition is a farily safe bet for NATO in the near future.

For a Recce Sqn, I'd rather have two HLVWs carrying fuel than one with fuel and one with 25mm on board (just my two cents).   One issue with the MGS will be the rather limited on-board ammo storage.   TOW missiles are also somewhat bulky with limited on-board vehicle storage and could perhaps be in high demand.   This could make the "loglight" concept somewhat hard to implement.   I'll need to chew on this one a little bit.

Cheers,

2B

p.s. I hope I have not given the impression that the USMC does not have supply trains etc or that I am proposing that we simply ignore the CSS issue by hoping we do not fight any battles.  Our echelon will need ammo etc, I just think that we can be a little more ruthless in our planning.  The USMC takes logistics very seriously and this is their big advantage over airborne forces in terms of strategic deployment.  When an airborne force lands by parachute it has very little CSS capability.  When a USMC force lands from ships it has a considerable CSS capability.  I'm risking a merge with the Marine thread so I'll hold up now.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 20, 2005, 15:18:11
I am proposing that we head for a Canadian Armoured Cavalry and not a USMC or US Army unit.   That being said, I was influenced by both the US Army and USMC due to courses with the US Army (which had Marine officers on them) and an exercise with the USMC on which I went as an exchange officer.   If we want to have global mobility the USMC does offer some insights.   In addition, their LAR battalions (equipped with the LAV-25 family) have lots of experience and can also offer some lessons for us.   I'm not suggesting that we simply copy the US Army or USMC (or any other nation's military), but rather that we look around for ideas that have relevance for us and perhaps adapt some of them.   We would still be Canadian and would have some unique outlooks.

I understood that. I'm was just asking whether you knew something of the direction we're headed or not. I agree with you entirentirely with the loss of our armoured capability, we need to look at other options. Screening Cavalry would be one of them.

Reducing the amount of artillery and other ammunition is a calculated risk.  The CavarCavalry Force should be able to fight a short pitched battle in a defensive mode.  I do not see the vehicles expending all their ammo, however, as the heavy fighting will be left for the follow-on coalition forces that would be right behind us.  We would still have ammunition in our echelon, but perhaps not as much as we planned to carry for battles against the Warsaw Pact.  Any integral fire support (mortars or guns) for the Cavalry would only fire to enable us to disengage and would not be firing prolonged bombardments in support of a deliberate attack.  Just like Buford's action at Gettysburg was only to cover the deployment of the main Union forces, so would this Cavalry only fight to cover the supported formation and not as the "main event."

Going back even farther in history, part of the Blitzkrieg theory was the use of airpower as a substitute (or supplement) to artillery.  This only works, of course. if we have air superiority or supremacy.  Not to be complacent, but I think that this condition is a fairly good bet for NATO in the near future.

For a Recce Sqn, I'd rather have two HLVWs carrying fuel than one with fuel and one with 25mm on board (just my two cents).  One issue with the MGS will be the rather limited on-board ammo storage.  TOW missiles are also somewhat bulky with limited on-board vehicle storage and could perhaps be in high demand.  This could make the "loglight" concept somewhat hard to implement.  I'll need to chew on this one a little bit.

I agree again that we would not need as much ammo. Now in regards to the MGS and TOW. If we are acting in a screening/recce capacity, would we even be using our main MGS and TOW units? Or would they be attached to another formation entirely that may have better CSS? In fact, it will be hard to tell at this point what sized units we'll even be able to field in the near future, especially in the more aggressive missions. It may only be individual Coy/Sqn's that get attached to our bigger brothers.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 21, 2005, 00:03:55
Zipper,

I'm really not sure what direction we are headed.  The Cavalry thing is just my suggestion (and not a very original one at that).  My worry is that we have taken away tanks and will try to do it the old way relying on perfect ISTAR and the TOW/MGS/ADATs.  I think that some might actually think that we could do it that way.  It is partly this fear that has inspired my desire to adopt a Cavalry role.

The TOW/MGS may or may not be used heavily in a screening or recce role (Cavalry).  If we are in a more conventional warfighing scenario then the Cavalry should have integral TOW and/or MGS.  Their purpose would be two-fold.  First, they would be employed to destory enemy recce assets found by the Coyotes (the hunter/killer concept).  Second, they would be there to protect the recce assets against the enemy's counter-reconnaissance effort (along with the infantry in their LAV IIIs).  In a defensive screen against a mechanized opponent more missiles and shells may be fired but that scenario is somewhat unlikey these days.  In we are "screening" an advance we would probably fire some missiles and shells when we encounter enemy security picquets and such.

I would certainly have integral CSS with the Cavalry and I do not see this as limiting our ability to employ TOW and MGS.  As for the size of our deployed forces, I see a robust Task Force consisting of a "regiment/battalion" sized group including integral combat support and combat service support.  This fits the Cavalry role quite nicely, as we could attach it to a coalition formation (brigade/div).

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 21, 2005, 02:06:32
All sounds good to me. I agree with you totally that we need to find new ways of doing things with what we have. I'm just trying to ask questions to clarify things in my own mind, and maybe luck out on something you haven't thought of yet. So far I have failed in that. :)   I've been out of the loop (forces) for so long that I'm not up on all these things anymore. Your views and explanations are well taken.

Thank you.

Now here is another question, and one that may not go over to well.

Considering we are getting rid of our armoured capability. And that we are in essence going to be working with other forces in most situations. And that most of those other forces will be other NATO countries with air assets. Why do we need ADATS? In fact, why would we need any air defense with overseas operations? We'll be relying on other countries for air superiority and operating under that blanket. So why not get rid of it like the tanks and put our money into something that would be more operationally useful?

Now I don't fully believe in this myself. But if we are getting rid of one aspect of the forces that we seem to deem unnecessary, then why not others?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 21, 2005, 07:56:40
Zipper,

You are asking a very good question and your input is most welcome.  I'm trying to come up with a fairly tight argument and to do that I need questioning.  I think that the ADATs is now being seen as more of an anti-tank system than an air defence system.  The 8 km range is good and all, but I'm not sure about getting those lines of sight.  For the Cavalry I'm content to have LAV TOW (if and when we get it online) for scenarios where we may face enemy armour.  I would say that virutally all of our land mechanized systems and how/if they are operated need to be reviewed. 

Now, having a man-portable capability could be useful if we are deployed on independent operations in far away places that may have small airforces available.  More to think about.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 21, 2005, 15:08:43
The ADATs at an anti-tank weapon? Yes it is feasible, but it was never designed as such. And is it fire and forget?

I guess I question that, and even TOW because of the fact that these weapons have to be guided. To keep yourself exposed after firing for even those few seconds (unless you have a FOO), and in such a thin skinned vehicle calls into question survivability.

As for 8km. Who came up with this number? Ranges of that sort have always been the perview of the Artillery. You can't see squat beyond 2km unless your in a table flat landscape, or a very large valley. And much less if you add trees as you well know. So why is this number being quoted so often?

As Majoor is fond of saying. Why are we not looking at hellfire and other similar weapon systems that are fire and forget? They would allow for a higher survivability on our part. Although if I remember correctly, they have a habit of killing our own people just as well.

I would say that virtually all of our land mechanized systems and how/if they are operated need to be reviewed.

I would agree with this. With the way we are going, I would even call into question why we are mechanized in the first place. Most of our missions are foot patrols inside urban centers with a few vehicle escorts and farther ranged patrols outside the center. So why not just turn our Infantry into light, give em trucks and a few APC's to get from one center to the other, and let the armoured handle the escorts and ranged patrols and be done with it? Forget about the cavalry role and just admit that we're going to be a light infantry country (man, am I going to burn in hell for that).

Oh, and give them shoulder mounted AA as well.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 21, 2005, 16:24:41
I'm afraid I hadn't had my coffee yet this morning when I posted and I overstated the ADATs range against ground targets (although it will outrange most AT missile).  Mea culpa!   :-[ Regardless, LOS is an issue.  If you can see everything then everything can see you. Parked up on a hill it will make a good artillery target.

That being said, long range missile fire can tip a battle.  On one of the student-run JANUS exercises I participated on in Ft Knox we got smoked by the OPFOR (Soviet style) in a defensive battle set at the NTC (open terrain).  We were pretty much defending at 1:1 odds and were pretty confident.  One of the instructors was that the OPFORs missiles outranged our own for the simulation but we weren't too worried (we almost felt sorry for the bad guys).  During the battle the OPFOR MRR moved in column until its recon identified our line of M1s and M2s across a wide, open valley.  He fanned out into line just past our max range (they had professional operators while we were just learning the system).  One "volley fire" of AT-5s from the two battalions of BMP2s and our "thin blue line" vanished.  Perhaps not realistic but it did show the advantage of range standoff if you can achieve it (tactical lesson learned: seeing farther than you can shoot is not necessarily a good idea for your combat systems).  Our arty could have pounded the stationary line of BMPs but by the time the guns were laid on the battle was over.

The MMEV (basically a LAV III with ADATs) would be a good system in certain places.  I can't see it filling a tank's role, but in wide open spaces it could be like the Africa Corps' 88mm guns.  Perhaps the trials out West will demonstrate the potential.  If it does get LAV mobility it could have a place in a Cavalry organization, but again, it would face challenges in complex terrain.  Guess we'll see.

Cheers,

2B

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 21, 2005, 22:59:21
Just a quick point Zipper:  The ADATs was originally designed for AA, but its secondary function was a limited (ammo) Anti-Armour capability.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 22, 2005, 16:36:19
My understanding is ADATS is a "beam rider" and thus LOS; not a big deal when shooting at a marauding MiG, but a real problem when trees etc. get in the way....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 23, 2005, 02:31:00
My understanding is ADATS is a "beam rider" and thus LOS; not a big deal when shooting at a marauding MiG, but a real problem when trees etc. get in the way....

I was going to say. Unless you have a FOO to operate another "beam" to ride. It is a LOS weapon and thus not something you want to be riding if in close hostile territory. It just seems to me that alot of our "new" layered approach is working in distances that are considered ideal, as opposed to realistic.

Another problem I have about the ADATS as opposed to keeping our MBT's or getting new ones (ideal). Is that the fact that the ADATS is a fairly large expensive missile. The fact that you would have to launch at least 10 if not 20 to 30 to really get proficiant and to keep in practise means that for the same money, you could probably afford to buy and maintain an MBT. And an MBT will cost less in human lives when used in a typical distance (less then 3000m) hostile situation.

Sigh
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 24, 2005, 11:47:19
I think we need an SME to weigh in here, by beam rider, I think the ADATS needs to maintain contact with the beam from the launch platform, rather than to "pick up" a beam from an external observer. This means ADATS is totally LOS, and there is no way for the MMEV to take advantage of the full 8km range without exposing itself.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 24, 2005, 14:20:28
ARGH! Even worse. :crybaby:

Kirk? Can I sigh here again? ;D

Sigh.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 24, 2005, 15:14:24
Just check your pulse from time to time Zipper and notify someone who cares. ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 24, 2005, 16:30:29
Well that is obviously not you Kirk. You heartless... :rage:

 :-*
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 24, 2005, 17:21:17
 ;)

Bye Sailor
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: big bad john (John Hill) on February 24, 2005, 18:01:09
Gentlemen please.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 24, 2005, 19:33:19
BBJ

Was that "Last Call"?

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: big bad john (John Hill) on February 24, 2005, 19:35:28
Of course!  LOL  It is what I say before I ask my RSM to go in, knock their heads together and proclaim "let there be peace".

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 24, 2005, 20:51:16
Starting to feel the noose tighten here.....
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 25, 2005, 02:32:08
Tell me about it...

So if that is the case? How about we get this thing going again?

Do you see cavalry bring a realistic option?

OR!

As I think may happen. The MGS, ADAT's, and possible the TOW will be brought into service and will then be religated to a training only vehicle like many others in the past, and only the Coyotes and LAV III's will see any deployment what so ever.

Why?

Because we'll soon realize that the MGS is useless and a death trap, and will end up like the LUVW's. And the cost of firing the TOW's and ADAT's will make them to valuable to put into harms way and thus they will not want to "waste" money on deploying them.

Hee hee...

Just my take.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 25, 2005, 09:01:07
Well, I hope that what happens at a minimum is that LAV TOW gets online and we can deploy the Coyote, LAV III and LAV TOW in Cavalry Task Forces.  MGS and MMEV could be included but are not, IMHO, lynchpins to the Cavalry.  The Coyote/LAV team would suffice for many stability operations (if you are facing insurgents, terrorists or armed gangs then TOW is more of a surveillance system than a weapons system).  Escorting convoys and partrolling would be excellent Coyote/LAV tasks.

We have pretty good gear right now as long as it is employed the right way.  Here are two pictures that show the Coyote performing two different tasks as part of the same operation.  One shows it in a surveillance role protecting a vital facillity (protection is a Cavalry task), while the other shows a Coyote about to perform a VIP convoy escort.  Our vehicles and crews are flexible and this is a big part of being Cavalry.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 25, 2005, 11:14:24
A couple of items I just recieved in the mail from the RCAC Assoc.:

Rangers Equipped With Strykers

A battalion of American Rangers headed for duty in Afghanistan, is taking 16 Stryker armored vehicles with them. Normally, the Strykers are only used in mechanized infantry brigades. But since the rangers will be moving around a lot in Afghanistan, and not always by helicopter or on foot, it was thought that the Strykers would be a useful vehicle for that kind of work. The Strykers are equipped with satellite communications equipment and remote control (from inside the vehicle) gun turrets. The regular infantry who have been using Strykers in Iraq have been very satisfied with the vehicles.

Normally, the rangers are â Å“light infantryâ ?, and are trained to use helicopters or parachutes to arrive at the combat zone. In previous trips to Afghanistan, the rangers have used hummers to get around on the ground.




Last U.S. Cavalry Regiment to Disappear

The U.S. Army has only one armored cavalry regiment left, and it is scheduled to be converted to one of the new UA (units of action) brigades next year. That event has triggered a debate in the army over whether the traditional concept of, â Å“fighting for informationâ ? is still valid.   This approach involves using small units of tanks and other armored vehicles to fight your way into enemy territory, grab prisoners, documents or whatever, and bring it back. Along with your observations, photographs or whatever, you get a good sense of what the enemy is up to. The technique was developed by the Germans during World War II, and adopted by the other armies by the end of the war. The alternative, which is more frequently used, is called "sneak and peek". This means UAVs, aircraft and people on the ground who stay out of the way and just watch.  

But the success of "fighting for information" caused the German â Å“armored reconnaissance battalionâ ? to become the model for most current reconnaissance battalions. The "fighting for information" technique has been used many times since World War II, but the current reorganization of the army's brigades has left the fate of the â Å“armored cavalryâ ? in doubt. The current divisions have a conventional armored cavalry squadron (what the cavalry people call a battalion) based on the World War II model. That means a mixed unit, with tanks, infantry fighting (armored) vehicles (IFVs), hummers, and lots of communications gear. The armored cavalry sends small teams, often a few guys in a hummer, out to scout, and especially check out things already spotted from the air (by helicopter scouts, UAVs, or even satellites.) These scouting teams are backed up by heavier teams of tanks and IFVs. If the scouts, on the ground or in the air, find a situation that needs a little muscle, in order to get the needed info, the heavy stuff can go in and do it. This was the genius of the original German concept. There were simply times when you had to fight for valuable information. But the new recon battalion will be called a Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition (RSTA) Battalion, and is currently designed to have no tanks or IFVs. But lots of UAVs and scouts in armored hummers.

The current armored cavalry regiment has 5,200 troops, 123 M1A2 tanks, 125 M3A2 Bradley IFVs, 16 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters, 24 OH-58D Kiowa scout helicopters, 15 UH-60L transport choppers, plus self-propelled artillery and lots of other gear. It's a small army, with supply and maintenance capabilities. The new RSTA brigades will have the supply and maintenance support, but no armor. Lots of UAVs and Internet access, but limited ability to fight for information.

There's no indication that the â Å“fighting reconnaissanceâ ? is no longer useful. American armored cavalry was used with great success as recently as 2003, and the 3rd Armored Cav is going back to Iraq for a year, before returning for conversion to a RSTA brigade. What is still undecided is whether the RSTA brigade will drop the heavy armor. The reason for that is weight. The RSTA brigades are meant to be more portable, and without armor they can be flown half way around the world. While tanks and Bradleys can, in theory, be flown long distances, in practice it is rarely done. Takes up too many aircraft.

So over the next year, the debate will rage, trying to put a value on â Å“fighting for informationâ ?, and the wisdom of leaving at least some of the recon battalions with their armored vehicles. UAVs and helicopters can see, but only guys in a tank can go anywhere, reach out, and touch someone.

 

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 25, 2005, 12:10:29
The 2nd Cav was/is converted to a SBCT, which sounds like a reasonable compromise between the "Heavy Metal" model and the light RSTA Battalion. The discussions about Canadian Armoured Cavalry seem to be orbiting around some of these ideas as well.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 25, 2005, 12:16:02
Along the lines of what AMajoor has said, I might argue that what has really happened is that the SBCTs have turned into Cavarly units with an infantry component.   In addition, the purpose of US Cavalry was to support Divisions and Corps.   As the Div and Corps concept changes there they may have to shift their "cavalry" in turn.   ACRs may disappear as they move away from Corps operations, but Cavalry Squadrons (battalion sized but never called that) should continue to have a role.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 25, 2005, 12:37:06
What would be the effect on this Cavalry Concept if the following was done?

Get rid of the Fire Support Vehicle - Gun (MGS or MBT) entirely.

Replace the ADATS/TUA combination of Fire Support Vehicles - Missile with a_majoor's Hellfire and Brimstone MMEV.

Upgun the LAVIIIs and Coyotes to something in the 35-60mm range.

Convert and upgrade All the Coyotes to a new, more easily deployed, Mast system

Assign all the LAVIIIs and Coyotes to the Cavalry

Reorganize the Armoured Regiments into independently deployable Squadrons based on the LAVIII-35(for example) with a Coyote Troop - or better yet move the Coyote surveillance system into LAVIII-35s as well.

Assign an Assault Troop to each Squadron with each LAVIII to carry a 4-man dismount team in the back.

The net effect as far as I am concerned is to increase the stand-off distance of the Squadron - allowing it to defend itself against lightly armed forces at longer ranges (even those that might have a small quantity of heavy support), and discourage commanders from thinking they still have a "tank-like" capability.



At the same time the infantry should be relieved of any vehicle that has a turret on it.   I agree with those that say that the LAV is not a vehicle for the close fight.   Sticking a turret with a short range weapon on it encourages people to try and bring it into the fight.   Not a good idea.   

It is an APC (armoured personnel carrier), it may even be an AWC (armoured weapons carrier), it is not an AFV (armoured FIGHTING vehicle).


I have borrowed some concepts from others on this one - but my central notion is Get rid of the 105s and upgun the LAVIIIs and turn them ALL over to the Cavalry.   Then find suitable carriers for the infantry.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 25, 2005, 17:17:18
Kirkhill,

I think that something along those lines would work, although I do not know if we would actually gain anything replacing the 25mm.  There is a 30mm Bushmaster but I don't think that we could put it in without getting a new turret.  Might be a cost/benefit thing.  I'd rather get a quieter engine for the Coyote.

An imporved mast for the Coyote would be great.  I think thay many believe that the mast works like a U-Boat periscope allowing the crew commande to quickly pop-up and look around.  Cutting down the time and requirement to get out and assemble it would be awesome.

I'd be happy with any anti-tank system as long as it had mobility.  I'll take TOW but the other missiles look interesting.

I'd like to try having a Cav Sqn with 2 Coyote Tps and 2 LAV Tps (or command versions of the Coyote).  Having two Tps of "scouts" would work well for many roles.  The scouts would dismount and clear woods/defiles etc. 

Basically I like the sound of it.  It resembles a USMC LAR Coy in some respects (although they do not have the surv gear to my knowledge but I could be wrong.  Its been a several years since I was down South).

Cheers and have a good weekend,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Senor Mono on February 25, 2005, 21:04:18
2B,

Would bringing the LAV 111/Coyote intregration concept down to the troop level be advantageous? Your idea of a mixed sqn sounds like an ideal mech direction for the CF. I see a mixed tp as having two surv vehs supported and assisted by two inf vehs, with the inf perhaps taking on more of a dismounted scout role. I believe the US ACRs similarly mixed Abrams and Bradleys at the pl level, though I suppose that was for a different purpose. Merging our mech and recce units into "cav" bns seems highly sensible considering the fact that our Army really isn't outfitted for conventional close mech combat.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 25, 2005, 21:19:11
It sounds great. It would save the life of the Armoured Corp.

I would try to find a way of getting a LAV III with the coyote's capabilities and get rid of the coyote entirly so as to have only one chasis. Otherwise the LAV chasis APC is already around, so go with it. Upgunning one of the varients would be a very good idea as well.

I like it! 

Then we could add track armour later... ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on February 26, 2005, 01:12:06
My modification wish list:

Replace the Delco turret on the LAV III with an OWS. CASR has an interesting concept illustration of a LAV III with a 25mm OWS, but whatever we use, it will make the LAV lighter and have a lower shillouette. An HMG or AGL should discourage thoughts of tank duels, but provision for a "Fire and Forget" missile to be mounted should be made for self defense purposes. (Clip on Javelin mount?)

US Stryker Recce vehicles have a sensor head replacing the weapons station in the OWS, which provided the "periscope" effect, and also leaves more room in the back for dismounts. The minus is lack of firepower (just a pintle mounted MG to my knowledge). For recce/surveillance I would advocate a 1-2 approach (all on a common LAV III hull); A Coyote II with the delco turret mounting the chain gun and a good thermal imaging sight, with one varient carrying the dismounts, while the other carries the improved surveillance mast. The space in the back can also support the kit for an NBC recce version, should that be desired. These two would be the prime versions for the recce/surveillance squadron, either as pure troops or mixed and matched as the situation requires.

I agree the current MGS is a curiosity, but some sort of gun version is desirable just for the high rate of fire a gun provides.

A "Bison II" or a pickup truck LAV III chassis for front line CSS and all the support varients is also a must.

LAV-Missile, well I've made my views known.... ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 26, 2005, 21:56:15
RNW,

When I was on the Cav Course in the States the heavy cavalry had tank platoons (M1s) and scout platoons (M3s) in the Cavalry Troop (a sub-unit or equivalent of our Sqn).  The tanks and scouts were not mixed at platoon level and it was not standard practice to have the tanks "overwatch" the scouts.  There were a couple of reasons for this.  First, the M3s had TOW, 25mm and good optics and therefore could overwatch each other.  Second, the tanks were kept back slightly to allow them to be deployed advantageously.

The Light Cavalry Tp (found in 2nd ACR and the Light Divisions at the time) had two platoons of scouts in HMMVWs with .50 and Mk19s and two platoons of HUMMVW TOW.  They could either function the same as their heavy cousins and have the TOW kept back or they could be pushed up to overwatch the scouts.  This could be taken further by having a Troop Scramble formation with 2 x TOW, 4 x HMMVW Scout and 1 x HUMMVW Command (either a Pl Comd or Platoon First Sgt) in each platoon.  The advantage of the Scramble formation is that the TOWs with their superior optics and firepower are integrated into the otherwise somewhat defenceless gun armed HUMMVWs.  I believe that the USMC use a CAAT (Combined Anti-Armour Team) based on groups of three HUMMVWs.  One with a .50, one with a Mk 19 and one with a TOW (Matt can probably shed some light here).

It is hard to "overwatch" with a Coyote mast since it takes a while to get set up and tear down.  Both the Coyote and LAV have excellent turret optics, however, and do not rely exclusively on the surv gear.  All that being said, a mix of Coyotes, LAVs or Coyotes with Scouts in the back and a pair of LAV TOW would make an interesting Recce Tp.  Six to eight vehicles would make a flexible package and could be the building block of a Cavalry Sqn.

Phew, I think that we're back to the beginning!

My original concept was for a Task Force that used our current equipment and organizations but with a slightly different role than usual.  One refinement I'm thinking of is to have the role of the Cavalry Task Force being to protect other formations.  This protection can come in many forms, ranging from a screen to protect the flank of a Division to a convoy escort task for humanitarian assistance groups.  My paper is actually being written (in fits and starts) and I'm debating even using the Cavalry term at all.  It is a loaded term in Canada, especially after the whole Cougar to Coyote DSFV Sqn fiasco.  The term Cavalry Sqn was bandied about but without any supporting doctrine.  Perhaps I'll try to Trojan Horse the Cavalry thing...

A more revolutionary Cavalry would be along the lines of Kirkhill's post where the Armoured Corps become the Cavarly and take over all the AFVs and associated crews/dismounts.  I do like this idea and have advocated it on other threads although I feel that it will go over like a Led Zeppelin right now.  AMajoor's equipment ideas also make sense and I would like a LAV version of the M548s for sure.

Any more thoughts on the virtues of vices of having mixed "Troops/Platoons" or is it better to cross attach?

Cheers,

2B

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 27, 2005, 10:33:58
2B

Many of the comments by others are valid, but let's not forget that not all Coyotes in the Surv role have masts.   We currently run one Mast and one Remote/Ground Mount per patrol.   In both cases, when on operations, the GIB is 'securely' seated in back protected by mounds of equipment.   Even the Command Variant of the Coyote, really won't offer up much room in back to add a couple of Scouts.   It may be best to go to the Coyote II that you alluded to (LAV III).

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 27, 2005, 14:15:48
A more revolutionary Cavalry would be along the lines of Kirkhill's post where the Armoured Corps become the Cavalry and take over all the AFVs and associated crews/dismounts.   I do like this idea and have advocated it on other threads although I feel that it will go over like a Led Zeppelin right now.   Majoor's equipment ideas also make sense and I would like a LAV version of the M548s for sure.

Any more thoughts on the virtues of vices of having mixed "Troops/Platoons" or is it better to cross attach?

Its not a bad Idea.

Since I am sad to say that all the arguments that I and many others have put up here (and other threads) about keeping tracked vehicles and other forms of Armoured Corp ideals are already dead. The decisions to go all wheel, and to fill in the "niche" role have already been made, as is the purchase of the MGS.

So with that being said. I do like Kirk's idea of keeping the "cavalry" role inside the Armoured Corp. If we do not then we are basically spelling l the death of the Corp. which I, of course am against. Then again I may be to late on this even and the decision to do so may be already made.

But it makes sense with what equipment we are going to, to go to one of the roles that have been mentioned above.

2B - I agree with you totally about going to the Coyote II so as to streamline the support needed.

As to the Cavalry thing. I am against the term only because I am not big on American methodology and their ways of doing things. I think we could take the term back again if we added our own Canadian flavour to it and made it our own. In other words, make alot of references to our past roles as Cavalry (horsed) and play on the Regimental histories with which the Armoured Corp is so very fond of.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on February 27, 2005, 14:23:29
We could always call them Panzer-Aufklarungs Abteilung >:D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: TCBF on February 27, 2005, 14:37:28
The modern term in use by the Bundeswehr is Panzeraufkarungsbataillon.   They are Div Recce Bns. In the late 80s/early 90s they had ten or twelve of them.   They took turns hosting the Boeselager Recce Competitions.

Tom
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 27, 2005, 18:18:53
George,

I do like our current inclusion of both a mast and a remote in each Patrol.   The doctrine guys like to focus on the mast but I've seen the remote used very effectively.   I've seen suggestions in the Armour Bulletin to go with one surv system per Patrol but I prefer having the flexibility (and backup gear) of having both.   I do not see the Surv Ops as dismounted scouts, although they can do it in a pinch I suppose.   If we strip out the back of the Command variants we could probably get two people back there with some comfort to try out the Scout concept.   LAV IIIs would probably be better in some ways and they have the advantage of already existing.   Even a Bison with a FLIR or sight could be suitable.   A common chassis would be nice (which makes the Coyote Comd Scout option attractive)!   We covered this in the Recce Tp/Sqn thread to some extent but we got a little de-railed by my musings on having a Command Patrol!   Perhaps we need to go back there.

All,

Mixed Troops with Scouts (LAVs or Coyotes with dismounts), Surv Coyotes and TOW would be useful for many scenarios.   It would offer a complete package for a variety of missions.   There could be times, however, when the TOW would be less useful than an additional Coyote Patrol.   I'd be interested in the feasibility of having a TOW system attached to the Coyote turret.   Not to go tank hunting but to give the Tp some self-defence against armoured targets.   I'm sure that the tech gurus will have reason why we do not have this.   I can also appreciate the training issue.

Perhaps we could go with three Recce Patrols (2 x Coyote Surv Ptls, 1 x Coyote or LAV Scout Scout Ptl) and a Command Patrol as the baseline.   TOW could always be attached for specific missions I suppose.

Going back to the main topic, "pure" Recce Squadrons and LAV Infantry Companies could be "cross-attached" to form composite Cavalry sub-units if the mission so dictates.   This would have to be practiced in peacetime and pre-deployment training.

Cheers,

2B

p.s. The Coyotes with the Surv gear would still be "recce" and would be the ones leading most of the time.  The surv gear would be used in OPs, not to "overwatch" the scouts.  The Scouts would be called up to investigate danger areas with their dismounts (overwatched by the other Coyotes using their turret systems and any LAV TOW if attached).  If there was a way to get 2 x scouts in the back of a Coyote with the Surv gear then we could just go with that.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 27, 2005, 19:18:23
Quibbling over the name is not a big thing.  The fact that we still have a Cavalry Association could justify us being Cavalry, if you so choose.   We could also call everyone "Dragoons" as that will be what they are.  Perhaps the Hussars, Horse, etc. will be upset with the term Dragoon, so Cavalry may in the end be the most commonly accepted term if people get too hung up on their Regimental Affiliation.

I am convinced that the Coyote is reaching the end of its' usefulness.  Why?  Because we are adding more electronics and sensors to it and it really is getting very cramped inside.  As I said, the GIB is buried under kit when the vehicle is fully kitted for operations.  It is time for an upgrade to a LAV III chassis.  That may solve some of the noise problems, plus gives a bit better system in which to keep batteries charged.  The Surv Suite mounted on the LAV III chassis would greatly improve crew comfort, especially the GIB's.  It would provide a commonality of the fleet.  It would allow for Scouts to be easily attached to a Troop. 

Although, one of my major concerns with the Coyote was its' size (another being its' turret being located two thirds of the way back on the hull) I am recommending the switch to the even large LAV III. 

I could forsee the Recce Troop increasing in size, to become an ten car troop.  Three two car Surv Patrols, One two car Scout Patrol and the Command Patrol.  Having this configuration there would be a vast amount of tasks that a Recce Troop could fulfill that they can't effectively do today.  The Surv Patrols would remain with one Mast and one Remote.  The Scout Patrol would provide dismounts for minor Assault Troop Tasks and the majority of any Dismounted Patrolling.  The Command Patrol would have the room to carry out resupply in the Screen that isn't there today.  It would also be better protected.  If UAVs are added, then the troop would become even larger, by one or two vehicles.

I would like to see our turrets upgraded also.  The 25 really doesn't pack enough punch to defend the vehicle enough.  A 30 or 35 may be a bit more realistic.  I'd also like to see a missile system incorporated, as in the M2 and M3 Bradleys. 

As pointed out, the sights on the Coyote are quite often good enough to use in the OP, without using the Mast or Remote.  However, you will not always be in a position where you can operate 'Mounted' or have the ground or location where that would be feasible. 

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 28, 2005, 02:38:35
Ok. A little confusion on my part.

What about the Gwagon? Where does it fit?

Also. I thought we came to the conclusion that the coyote is not a very good recce vehicle as it cannot sneak and peek, and is more of a surveillance vehicle?

Now. Another problem I forsee is the fact that even if we do buy new Herc's, we will not be able to deploy our LAV's ourselves as they do not fit. So we will either have to deploy them slowly using our new ships (???), or to rent other means as always from the US.

Otherwise. All these ideas sound pretty good. And I agree with you 2B as to keeping the TOW back to deploy on a as needed basis only.

Up gunning from the 25 would be nice as well, especially if we have them in the Armoured Corp. We have to have the biggest guns after all. ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 28, 2005, 08:06:37
Zipper,

I'm one of those heretics that considers the Coyote a Recce vehicle!  I've left the G-Wagon out intentionally.  When vehicles start moving they get seen whether they are a jeep or a Coyote.  I would employ the G-Wagon or some other "light" vehicle for Recce Tps/Sqns that are supporting true Light Forces where we have limited space on the aircraft and getting there fast is the prime consideration.

As for getting a Cavalry Task Force somewhere I envision us either having to use US airlift or renting the good'ol Antonovs if shipping is not an option.

George,

What is the maximum size of a chain gun that can fit onto a two-man turret?  I've seen the 30mm Bushmaster II on the CV9030, but I was told that it would not fit in our turrets.  A LAV III with the surveillance kit would be roomier! 

All,

I've strayed away from indirect fire.  The US have two mortars in their Tp (their equivalent of a Sqn).  Do we need organic indirect fire support for this force and if so at what level?

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on February 28, 2005, 08:59:30
When it comes to up-gunning the Coyotes and LAVs, it will mean a redesigned turret.  The current turret would have to go.  With a redesigned turret, a missile system could be incorporated. 

The Recce Troop is becoming quite large with what we are talking now, so mortars would have to be relegated to a Support Troop, as in WW II.  This would be a troop on its own which may even include MGS.  Assault Troop would be a completely different entity.  Support Troop would do well to have 120 mm mortars and the new munitions that are out there today for Illum, Anti-Tank, etc.  It would really beef up a Recce Sqn.

There is another option for mortars, which is found on some MBTs today, and that is the turret mounted 40 or 60 mm mortars that would provide HE and Illum in emergencies. 

I wouldn't throw out any ideas of incorporating the GWagens into the Recce Troop.  Having been a "Jeep Jockey", I know how effective they would be.  Open GWagens would be a good solution (By open, I mean no tops, no Roll Bars, no wind screens.) and one that would allow the Reserves to use the same kit as the Regs use.  I know that being open and unarmoured they would be more susceptible to enemy small arms and mines, but that is a hazard of the trade.  They are a valuable resource and can still be used effectively, as long as everyone remembers their limitations.  If the fear of small arms and mines is too prevalent in todays political climate, then I would suggest a small vehicle like the Ferret or its brother the Fox.  I would think that getting anything larger would be disadvantageous; so Fennek and Fuchs size vehicles are stretching the boundaries (Except in the NBC Recce roles).   

Again, I believe the Coyote and LAV are too big for the Recce role, but they are the way we have decided to go.  I feel that the only vehicle of this size that I would accept as a Recce vehicle, would be the German Luchs.  Because of its' abilities to drive at speed Forward and Reverse, with its' drivers in front and rear, it is a more thoroughly thought out design.  It also has a larger gun.

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on February 28, 2005, 09:06:22
What is the maximum size of a chain gun that can fit onto a two-man turret? I've seen the 30mm Bushmaster II on the CV9030, but I was told that it would not fit in our turrets. A LAV III with the surveillance kit would be roomier!
When it comes to up-gunning the Coyotes and LAVs, it will mean a redesigned turret. The current turret would have to go. With a redesigned turret, a missile system could be incorporated.
The manufacturer already has a turret with 30 mm cannon and TOW missiles that is based on our current turret.   There is also a 35 mm that is of a newer generation.

http://www.gdls.com/
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 28, 2005, 09:55:39
I believe that they considered putting TOW on the Coyote but discarded it due to cost.  It obviously works since that is the arrangement on the Bradley.  I've been told that the 30mm will not fit in our current turrets and that we'd need a whole new turret.  I assume that the LAV-30 turret can fit in the turret ring of the Coyote and LAV III.  Cost might get in the way here but I have some ideas...

At the risk of pulling this thread further away from the topic, I venture that the Recce vehicles need the TOW on the turret more than the infantry carriers.  Recce vehs can find themselves far from help and in need of the ability to hit an enemy vehicle that is engaging them.   We like to say that Arty will do the job but I feel that this is simply assuming the problem away.

On the other hand, having TOW on both the LAV III and Coyote could perhaps mean that we would do away with the LAV TOW.  The US Army did away with its mech TOW platoons once it had the M2/M3 Bradleys with TOW and 25mm.  There would be a training bill to go with this but it would make for a cleaner org chart and would give each vehicle/patrol/tp the ability to defend itself.  Perhaps if we funnelled the MGS, MMEV and LAV TOW money into a LAV-30 TOW/ LAV-25 TOW turret instead we could make this happen.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on February 28, 2005, 12:48:45
Lots of thoughts on Coyote & LAV APC anti-armour capabilities here:
http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,25800.0.html
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 28, 2005, 15:24:30
Hmmm.

How effective are we going to be able to be as a screening force (cavalry)? We do not have the punch to enable us to engage any strong force that may try to outflank our larger formation. If we do go with TOW on turret, it will disrupt our mobility. And most screening forces usually have a lot of cross country ahead of them to stay on the main forces flanks. So I ask, how well do we expect to do this job if it is given to us?

Now. The recce role. How well are we going to be able to do this job? Most recce that I am even slightly familiar with is either sneak and peek, which the LAV's are terrible at. And recce in force (or aggressive information gathering) which again we do not have the punch or protection for with our current plans. So the Gwagon is our only "real" recce capable vehicle.

So what role will we be able to fill? Base protection which the coyote is very well proven to provide. Supply chain escort which is mainly road and the coyote and LAV III's are again proven well equipped for. And of course peacekeeping patrols.

I'm sorry. I am just having a hard time seeing us fill any of the other "combat" related rolls that those countries who we will be supporting cannot better fill themselves. Am I way off base here?

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 28, 2005, 15:41:02
Zipper,

What do mean by the Coyote only being good for base protection?  In my opinion the Coyote can perform the Recce role.

All,

Perhaps we are getting a little too equipment specific here.  I'd like to look at capabilties for a bit and then look back at our kit and see how it fits.

My own view for Cavalry Task Force is that it has the following capabilities:

    a.   recce (find the enemy)

    b.  counter-recce (destroy the enemy's recce)

    c.  perform screens and guards

    d.  conduct Rear Area Security (RAS)

    e.  perform econonmy of force tasks

Its integral capabilities should be as follows:

    a.  sensors (Coyote at a minimum but perhaps including UAVs, EW etc);

    b.  some capability to act to include:

         (1)   anti-personnel weapons

         (2)   anti-armour weapons

         (3)   some form of fire support

   c.  mobility and counter-mobility support

   d.  CSS

   e.  command

I believe that some "sensors" such as Coyotes and other recce vehs are also "actors" and need to be able to fight as well as gather information.  Going back to the whole TOW bit, putting TOW on the Coyotes and LAVs would at least give the guys up front the ability to deal with any threat (not conduct assaults, but at least be able to fight out of a situation).

Should the component sub-units have integral anti-armour, fire support and mobility assest or should these be centralized?

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on February 28, 2005, 16:00:26
Zipper,

What do mean by the Coyote only being good for base protection? In my opinion the Coyote can perform the Recce role.

I didn't say it was ONLY good for base protection. Just that is is already proved itself in that roll.

I am just questioning how capable we will be, beyond what those countries we will be supporting (US, Britain, NATO) can already do for themselves with better equipment? In your 5 rolls I see below. We are really (with the equipment that we are getting) only able to preform very well at (on par or better with what other countries military's can do) are: b,d, and e.

I'm not saying we are not capable personal and training wise to do all of the other jobs. Just that our equipment will hold us back at performing a and c   better then what our bigger cousins can do for themselves.

Otherwise I agree with you on everything except that the Coyote is a good recce vehicle. To big and noisy. I also think that the units should have integral anti-armour, fire support, etc. As by the time you call in the separate units for support. You may have lost more of your unit then was necessary.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 28, 2005, 17:03:18
What is "base protection?"

Our "sense" capabilities have been in demand with our allies (which includes the Coyotes).  If our allies do not want our support than I guess that we'll have to live with it.  I would argue, however, that recce and/or Cavalry would be a very welcome addition to a coalition force.  Perhaps we would miss out on an "invasion", but our equipment and skill set would be a good fit with the follow-on stability phase.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 28, 2005, 17:04:13
2B

In the Falklands 3 RM Brigade was reinforced with a Troop (maybe 2 Troops?) of Scimitars (the 30mm Rarden version of the Lt Recce Vehicle).   It came from one of the Recce Squadrons of the Household Cavalry Regiment.   These vehicles were used as DFS vehicles in various assaults. (Big Bad John can clarify and correct here)

If we were, as I previously suggested, to remove all turrets from the Infantry and hand them over to the Cavalry the Infantry, on a mission-dependent basis, would require Cavalry support.   With that in mind, and assuming an Independent Squadron formulation, each Regiment supplying 3 Squadrons to act in support of a Task Force how would that influence your basic structure?

For instance, if your Squadron is strictly to be used for patrols and recce then combining all capabilities at the Troop level could make sense to me.   On the other hand, if only part of the job is of that nature, and another part is to supply mobile fire support (guns and missiles) or even a quick reaction force (guns, missiles and troops) might it not make more sense to keep the "close-combat" fire-support elements separate from the observation and surveillance elements so that they might be parcelled out?

Back to the notion of 3-5 Sabre Troops, with or without dismounts, fire support elements either integral to the Troops or Squadron assets, and Surveillance elements - again grouped at Squadron level.

For instance if you think you can get the job done with 3 Surv elms, a Sabre elm (Assault Troop), and a Fire Support elm, how about adding 2-3 more Sabre elms and an additional Fire Support elm to the structure that could be detached to offer direct support to the Infantry.

Many small Troops with discrete functions in the Squadron rather than a few, large, multi-function Troops.

Could that be made to fly?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: big bad john (John Hill) on February 28, 2005, 17:21:05
@ Troops, one used as Armoured recee the other used dismounted.  They were not used in the DFS role.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on February 28, 2005, 19:07:09
Thanks for the correction Big Bad John.   I thought I recalled reading that they had added some weight of fire to some of the final assaults, either to one of yours or perhaps to 3 Para's fire plan.   Sorry for getting it wrong again.

Cheers.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: MCG on February 28, 2005, 19:15:43
I'd heard that the Scorpion was used in DFS to sp the Paras.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: big bad john (John Hill) on February 28, 2005, 19:28:12
4 of them did give DFS in one instance.  There were 2 Scimitars and 2 Scorpions for the whole campaign.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on February 28, 2005, 23:43:39
Zipper,

Do you mean that the Coyotes have been shown to be effective for defending our camps/bases overseas?  They can certainly do that but that is rarely their task.  Coyotes are usually out and about, although they have been used to protect fixed high value targets.  Their surveillance gear is only usable when static but the turret optics are also important.  I agree that the Coyote is big and noisy but, as my signature says, you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you'll get what you need. ;) 

With the inclusion of TOW and some form of indirect fire support asset a Cavalry Task force could perform the range of tasks.  Having tanks would certainly make it more robust. but I think that this Cavalry force could certainly screen and would also perform a credible guard.  I think that it would be quite welcome in Iraq (and not necessarily needing the TOW and indirect fire for that task).

Kirkhill,

Centralization does have the advantage of being able to task-tailor the force "on the fly."  It is easier to have a Tp or Sqn of support elements that is used to being pushed down than trying to pull bits out of a lower level sub-unit.  The Cavalry battle, however, may require a closer sense of affiliation and teamwork.  In addition, the wide dispersion of the force could make ad-hoc attachments hard to implement in time.  Perhaps the lowest we should "devolve" is to the Sqn level.  We've been doing some JCATS work here and it is really driving home to me that we need some integral anti-armour in our Recce Sqns as well as a mobile indirect fire support system for anything except chasing insurgents.

Cheers,

2B

p.s. The Scorpian was a nice little vehicle wasn't it...Must...resist...tangent... ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 01, 2005, 00:13:33
Try and stay on track 2B....

How about you start from the premise that you are going to create a Cavalry Squadron (complete with LAV-AT and LAV-AMOS (my personal favourite)) but that the Squadron be structured so that it can hive off 2 or 3 Infantry Support Troops and yet still perform its Cavalry Role.  This may mean a 7-10 Troop Squadron but with some of those detached and some in support.  The Squadron Commander would still only be fighting 3-5 elements.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on March 01, 2005, 00:42:43
Quote
Re: Combat Team of tomorrow?
Reply #41 on: November 15, 2004, 13:08:58  »

LOSAT and FOG-M are potentially as destabilizing as the introduction of the HMS Dreadnaught was to the capital fleets of the world in the early part of the last century. The biggest problems right now is there isn't a doctrine or organizational structure in place to take full advantage of the capabilities these systems can offer. If we go in too early without thinking about how they can best be used, we might end up like the British navy in WW I; armed with very impressive looking "Battlecruisers", which were fatally flawed in concept and operation.

This author looks at the idea of tanks being technologically obsolete, but once again we are left with the question of how do you replace those functions without using a tank? http://www.knox.army.mil/center/ocoa/ArmorMag/ja97/4lastmbt.pdf. The modified Bradley pictured in the article represents a "best guess" look at a quickly available LOSAT platform, and there is no reason the same vehicle couldn't carry FOG-M or even a mixed battery of missiles. Close protection would have to come from accompanying infantry, and long range target data will have to be available to the vehicle crew to use the weapons to their best effect. Using this as the baseline, and assuming we can purchase Bradley's as the US forces does a draw down, we can build the Combat Team of Tomorrow with the following:

"Kodiak" section carriers. The M-2 turret is removed and replaced by a low profile weapons mount for survivability.
"Cheetah" fire support vehicles carrying FOG-M, LOSAT or mix as the tactical situation dictates (as in illustration)
"Fox" recce and surveillance vehicles. Similar to the Kodiak, the Fox -A have a mast mounted sensor suites (surveillance, FOO/FAC/MFC vehicles), while the Fox-B carries the dismounted recce section. The mast is quick raising and lowering, and robust enough to use on the move. Think of a submarine periscope rather than the current Coyote mast.
"Kodiak mortar carrier", using the 120 mm mortar for area coverage (HE/smoke/illum). Cheetahs use the PGM's to take out point and hard targets.

A combat team would cover a lot of ground, with a Fox recce troop operating ahead, Kodiak's and Cheetahs one or two bounds back and the Mortar carriers a bound in the rear.

In principle, a new series of LAV based vehicles could also be built to take on these roles (LAV 3.5), but they would have lower cross country mobility and armour protection compared to the M-2 baseline. Given the decades of use and development in the Canadian Army, we probably could make a LAV 3.5 which addresses some of the mobility and protection issues in a wheeled platform.

Although I pulled this from the Combat team of Tomorrow? thread, the layout of vehicles and equipment transposed onto a LAV III or improved derivatives (LAV 3.5) seems to be suitable for a "Cavalry Team" as well. Slot an Admin troop with high mobility trucks or LAV III logistics attached to each Cavalry team, and I think we are getting closer to the end result. In garrison, the recce vehicles and troops would be pooled (Recce/Surveillance Squadron) for administrative support, but each troop would belong to one of the teams in practice.

This is bringing the idea back towards a "Cavalry Regiment", although with the Recce Squadron, two Cavalry squadrons, a CSS squadron and a Headquarters squadron holding the ISTAR CC, it would be at least as big as a mechanized Infantry battalion of old.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 01, 2005, 02:12:11
Do you mean that the Coyotes have been shown to be effective for defending our camps/bases overseas?   They can certainly do that but that is rarely their task.   Coyotes are usually out and about, although they have been used to protect fixed high value targets.   Their surveillance gear is only usable when static but the turret optics are also important.   I agree that the Coyote is big and noisy but, as my signature says, you can't always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you'll get what you need. ;)  

With the inclusion of TOW and some form of indirect fire support asset a Cavalry Task force could perform the range of tasks.   Having tanks would certainly make it more robust. but I think that this Cavalry force could certainly screen and would also perform a credible guard.   I think that it would be quite welcome in Iraq (and not necessarily needing the TOW and indirect fire for that task).

Yes, that is exactly what I meant. And I guess the reference to not getting what  you want, but what you need is why I asked about how effective we will be in helping out our allies in various operations. Yes they ask for us quite a bit. But I believe it is more for political reasons then for our glowing military personalities or capabilities.

I was reading a book on US armour tonight, and they said in it specifically that the Stryker forces (SBCT) are only meant for low intensity operations on their own, unless directly attached to a larger force. So in other words in going that direction as a whole military ourselves, we have limited ourselves to low intensity situations unless we back up (or are invited into) larger countries operations. So I guess I am asking how effective we'll be for our allies given the fact that we are limiting ourselves to such a small degree. In other words, we have lost our ability to fight a war, but not our ability to support the after math.

Now a question on Majoor's topic. I haven't been personally in a coyote in many years, or in anything newer. I cannot remember if they have manual over rides for their turrets or not?

As well, I was reading in the same book about the fact that these US SBCT's will be heavily reliant on LOSAT to look ahead of them before they move, so that they don't get into heavier situations then they can handle. I can only guess that is what we will be attempting to buy into as well?

Considering the reliability of the technology to date, as well as any technologies ability to take real combat conditions. I wonder if it is wise to so heavily rely on it? Its sounds like the Americans are betting quite a bit on it.

Otherwise, I think the chances of us ever getting back into track (in the next ten years) and thus the bradley is pretty far removed.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on March 01, 2005, 06:18:00
Zipper,

I admit up front that for better or for worse we are moving towards being a niche army.   With regards to your question about the Coyote, what do you mean about manual override (power traverse vs by hand or for the crew commander?)

AMajoor,

The Combat Team of Tomorrow is a feasible Cav structure, although I'd like to increase the "recce" at the expense of the "infantry" if we are going with mixed sub-units.   The aim of the recce in that Combat Team seems to be to find enemy for the rest of the team to kill, which is more like our traditional combat teams (with tanks).   Perhaps a 1:1 ratio with missiles on each vehicle.   Perhaps "pure" sub-units is the way to go but have the option to cross-attach.   Integral mortars to the sub-unit are a good idea for warfighting scenarios and if they have direct fire capabililites then even better!

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on March 01, 2005, 11:09:43
Try and stay on track 2B....

How about you start from the premise that you are going to create a Cavalry Squadron (complete with LAV-AT and LAV-AMOS (my personal favourite)) but that the Squadron be structured so that it can hive off 2 or 3 Infantry Support Troops and yet still perform its Cavalry Role. This may mean a 7-10 Troop Squadron but with some of those detached and some in support. The Squadron Commander would still only be fighting 3-5 elements.

Sorry if in my haste I may have missed something, but the solution would likely look like this:

5 or 6 Troops per Sqn, and 4 to 5 Sqns per Cav Regt each being a step up from the former.   Three or four Recce/Cav Sqns, a Cbt Support Sqn (Mortars, TOW, MGS), a HQ Sqn (Maint & Log), and a RHQ with a eleven car Recce Troop and D&S Platoon.

GW


[EDIT:  Sorry a_majoor just noticed your take on the same lines.]
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on March 01, 2005, 14:15:33
Kirkhill,

If we are going to have Light Forces then I'd like to have specialized Sqns to support them (based on a lighter chassis).  I've been participating with some of the Light Forces development work up here and I think that we need a different fleet to do the job justice.  Light Forces would have a different role than the LAV based Armoured Cavalry and I would not see the two necessarily working together.  Terrain and the need for rapid deployment should drive the selection of forces.  Perhaps a Light Cavalry Sqn and some form of fire support Tp would be in order to support a Light Task Force.  Maybe I'll start a new thread...

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 01, 2005, 14:24:15
Piqued my interest 2B, maybe time for a different thread.

Can I presume you are thinking about something in the 5 tonne range that could be lifted by a Medium Helicopter like the EH-101 or a light Tactical Airlifter like the C27J?   4.5 Tonnes per would be nice number.   1 per EH-101 and 2 per C27J or even 4 per C130H.

That would put the following vehicles on the table, assuming a desire for an armoured vehicle:

The MOWAG armoured Hummer - the Eagle II and III
The Turkish armoured Hummer - the Cobra
The Anglo-Italian armoured Iveco - the FCLV/MLV (more like an armoured Staff Car IMHO)
The French armoured G-Wagen - the VBL

It could also include the lightest of the Wheeled APCs - the Italian PUMA 4x4 (think Lynx on Wheels)

In the future it could also include the Shadow RST-V hybrid diesel-electric being developed for the USMC

And if you were willing to invest 20 minutes at each end, hooking and unhooking, as well as loading up, it could also include Hagglunds Bv206s or the larger brother the BVS10.

These can all, with the exception of the VAB, be seen at http://www.army-technology.com/projects/


Of course this all brings us right the way back around to - The Best "Mud Recce" Vehicle.   http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,24398.0.html

Cheers.

Or perhaps we just say 15 tonnes and over = Cavalry, 5 tonnes and under = Infantry.  Arty, Engineers and everybody else, adjust to suit.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 01, 2005, 22:17:08
Zipper,

I admit up front that for better or for worse we are moving towards being a niche army.   With regards to your question about the Coyote, what do you mean about manual override (power traverse vs by hand or for the crew commander?)

Yes, I mean power traverse vs by hand for the gunner. Like in the Cougar. I think it would be a mistake for us to lose the ability to traverse by hand if needed. Electronics break down, and was one of our strengths over the Americans when we could still fight regarless of whether our power systems went down or not.

If we are going to have Light Forces then I'd like to have specialized Sqns to support them (based on a lighter chassis). I've been participating with some of the Light Forces development work up here and I think that we need a different fleet to do the job justice. Light Forces would have a different role than the LAV based Armoured Cavalry and I would not see the two necessarily working together. Terrain and the need for rapid deployment should drive the selection of forces. Perhaps a Light Cavalry Sqn and some form of fire support Tp would be in order to support a Light Task Force. Maybe I'll start a new thread...

Ok. Now I am REALLY confused. What the hell do you guys consider light? I don't know about you, but I consider the LAV light. If we went any lighter, we'd be walking. Even the Americans are saying that their SBCT's are light forces. So why are considering them medium? Becasue it sounds better in parliment? Lets look at it for what it is. We're going niche, we're going light (mobile), and we don't want to admit that we could not defend this country for longer then a few hours at best, nor fight our own battles as our own separate force.

I guess this is what is truely behind my asking if we would contribute anything to any of our allies when we are pigeon holing ourselves into such a "light" task.

As to us going more recce as opposed to Infantry. Isn't that what the LOSAT system is supposed to do? Do much of the recce for us using technology (awacs, sattelite, etc.) instead of commiting people to the job? Granted, we have none of those capabilities without being part of a larger force, but isn't that what it is there for?

Now. Besides doing what I have been doing in wishing beyond hope that we get track again. Does any of this "cavalry" stuff have a hope in hell of happening? Or have the decisions already been made (RCD as recce, Strats as DFS), and this is all just pipe dreaming? If it isn't pipe dreaming, then I may still have a hope in glory that the Armoured Corp doesn't end up in the dust bin with the vets.

ARGH!! ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on March 01, 2005, 23:37:27
I think breathing into a paper bag will help.

Light forces are "foot mobile" Infantry. They have a low logistics overhead, can operate in complex terrain without help and are adaptable to being inserted by many different means (everything from marching in to HAHO drops from airplanes to submarine insertion). Light forces carry limited supplies, and their fighting power is basically hand held and man portable weapons.

Medium forces have some extra elements to increase their fighting power, but also accept a larger logistics overhead. They can be used in most types of terrain and in most military situations ("Full Spectrum"), with limitations. In WWII and for a while after there was a beast known as a "Motor Batallion" in the British army, which was basically an infantry battalion with organic troop lift via Bedford trucks. A Motor Battalion could move much faster over the transport net, carry more supplies for the troops and heavier weapons (Towed Anti-Tank guns were a common addition to a Motor Battalion, if memory serves). Surprise: this is the 1950 era version of a LAV battalion!

Heavy forces transfer the fighting power to the platforms, have a huge punch and a correspondingly large logistics footprint. Heavy forces are tactically decisive, but operationally and strategically limited (you have to be able to get to the action in time). Heavy forces also have limited utility in complex terrain.

LOSAT is an experimental anti tank missile which moves to the target at Mach 5, and the launcher can be cued to track 4 separate targets and do a volley launch against all four. One HMMVW with a LOSAT rack on the roof can take out a tank platoon in a matter of seconds.

What 2Bravo is saying is the Cavalry team needs to be weighted more towards "recce" and less towards "fighting", perhaps our only major point of contention. I will say the manoeuvre elements of the Cavalry team provide alternative and "local" recce, while the scout/recce/surveillance vehicles and systems would feed to the higher HQ, and cue the manoeuvre elements to take a closer look with dismounted Infantry patrols or scan with the missile launcher's sight head.

Is Cavalry in the books? Not at the moment, but since 2Bravo is about to submit a dazzling staff paper (hint), he will become the "Star" of the Armoured world and rise rapidly through the ranks so he can command the first Armoured Cavalry Regiment in Canada..... ;D
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 02, 2005, 00:12:21
Ok, with paper bag in hand...

Thanks Majoor.

So I guess our LAV units will be on the lighter side of medium? Since it was my impression that units like the marines with M2's and even some M1 capability would be considered medium. In other words, Heavy to me is a Armoued Division. Medium is a Infantry division with armoured units attached.

I guess we have to look at these things differently.

Also, I guess I am mistaking LOSAT for ISTAR?

What 2Bravo is saying is the Cavalry team needs to be weighted more towards "recce" and less towards "fighting", perhaps our only major point of contention. I will say the manoeuvre elements of the Cavalry team provide alternative and "local" recce, while the scout/recce/surveillance vehicles and systems would feed to the higher HQ, and cue the manoeuvre elements to take a closer look with dismounted Infantry patrols or scan with the missile launcher's sight head.

Would we be able to field your translation of Cavalry Majoor? It seems yours is geared to a larger formation? Or am I off base again?

Is Cavalry in the books? Not at the moment, but since 2Bravo is about to submit a dazzling staff paper (hint), he will become the "Star" of the Armoured world and rise rapidly through the ranks so he can command the first Armoured Cavalry Regiment in Canada..... ;D

While I doubt we will ever have "armoured" cavalry here. I can only hope that 2B can write his paper with the idea of giving us some punch, instead of how we all seem to be headed towards base protection services and escort duty on the supply chain. And what publication is this likely to show up in? Anything that is public access?

And what is it that 2B does that enables him to influnce these things?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: George Wallace on March 02, 2005, 00:29:56
If we told you; we'd have to kill you....  ;D

As you use your GGHG hatbadge, he uses his.

Publication would probably be into the Armour Bulletin or the Army Journal.  One or both are accessable online. 

Armour Bulletin is at:  http://www.army.forces.gc.ca/Armour_school/bulletin/index_e.asp

GW
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 02, 2005, 02:55:42
Thanks GW.

Oh. One other thing. What is the website for the Association?

Thanks
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on March 02, 2005, 06:36:21
AMajoor,

Work proceeds...Maybe completed draft next week...Perhaps I have to leave these means to finish!  Maybe I need to remember my first Regiment's motto!

Zipper,

I'm not a 25mm Gunnery guy, but the Coyote does have manual traverse.

ISTAR stands for Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisiton and Reconnaissance.  It is one of our newest buzz-words and I think that the hopes of our Army have been pinned on it.  I was in an ISTAR Company but to me it is a process and not necessarily a unit.  Basically it is a process by which "sensors" are tasked to answer the questions posed by the Int staff.  Sensors can be anything from Coyotes to UAVs to EW to infantry patrols.  The ISTAR Coordination Centre (ISTAR CC) is a fairly new beast and I do think that it has promise.  I've seen it as a part of the G3 branch (operations) and forming the link between the "brain" and the "senses" in both directions.  It has been an "all-arms" cell in my limited experience with officers and NCOs who have some expertise with the various sensors.  The "book" has it in the G2 but again my experience has it in the G3.

When ISTAR is working well the many sensors will be looking at the right spots for the right things at the right time.  It can also help speed up the flow of information and the linking of sensor to shooter.  The guns are big fans of ISTAR for obvious reasons.  I'd like to keep branch turf-wars out of ISTAR and keep it as broad as possible.

I see ISTAR as a postive step but it is not a replacement for combat power.  Done properly it is a powerful tool but I think that the Canadian army is somewhat over-optimistic in its belief about being able to get perfect situational awareness about the enemy.  Our army seems to think now that we can do away with advancing to contact because we will have perfect SA. Perhaps a new thread (after my paper is done!)

Your assessment of our LAV forces being on the lighter side of medium is accurate.  For "stand-up combat" I would prefer to use either heavy or light forces using terrain as the deciding factor.  Even a heavy/light mix works well.  This is the driving idea behind my little Cavalry thought experiment.  To me, the LAV infantry battalions will actuallly feel the loss of the tanks as much if not more than the armoured corps.  LAV IIIs on their own cannot work as "combat teams" in a warfighting environment.

All,

As I alluded to earlier we are doing some JCATS work right now (the new improved JANUS) and I really want some TOW or even MGS up with the Recce Sqns (and therefore integral to my Cav).  Using harsh language against T-62s is not very effective... I've also seen the benefits of having some integral mortars or guns.  We do not have any and I hate to rely on someone else's toys.

Cheers,

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 02, 2005, 21:35:58
I'm not a 25mm Gunnery guy, but the Coyote does have manual traverse.

Thank God. As much as I like the new toy's. I am a firm believer in being able to do things with your own two hands. Which relates to ISTAR.

I see ISTAR as a positive step but it is not a replacement for combat power. Done properly it is a powerful tool but I think that the Canadian army is somewhat over-optimistic in its belief about being able to get perfect situational awareness about the enemy. Our army seems to think now that we can do away with advancing to contact because we will have perfect SA. Perhaps a new thread (after my paper is done!)

Hear hear! This is exactly what I am afraid of with our downgrading of capabilities, and even that of the US's similar emphasis on this technology to "lighten" its forces. As above. Even with the toys, ALL fighting eventually boils down to an Infanteer getting into a bad situation with a knife in the dark.

Technology is great. It makes information easier to communicate and faster to process. But it is also much easier to to break. How many of us have been in exercises with the US in the good ol' days when their lovely new technology broke down and they were left to sit there while we carried on with our ol' hand cranked jellopies? When ours did break down, we got out and with a hammer and duct tape, made it work again. Thank God for hand cranked turrets.

I just hope that our reliance on ISTAR doesn't take over for common sense and just plain and simple combat drill.

I read the Bulletin, thanks to GW, and I found it interesting in the article on the MGS...

Quote
All of our TTPs and tactical formations are based upon a Cold War orientation.   Recent experience has taught us that the current threat is much more complex than previously imagined.

So if it more complex, then why are you downgrading your capability? To use that argument and similar ones is to walk into that justification that we should only train for peacekeeping or similar missions. Why we do not is because as we all know, training for war and then doing peacekeeping is easier then the reverse. So then why are we equipping for peacekeeping and other similar low intensity conflicts?

I say make up TTPs for the situation and then use them. Are we unable to have different TTPs?

I think you cavalry ideas and the TTPs that would be following are a great idea. But the fact that they are "trashing" the old TTP's (and equipment/capabilities) just because they have not been relevent for the recent situations is rather short sighted.

I know, I know. Budget. It saddens, frustrates, and scares me all at the same time.

As I alluded to earlier we are doing some JCATS work right now (the new improved JANUS) and I really want some TOW or even MGS up with the Recce Sqns (and therefore integral to my Cav). Using harsh language against T-62s is not very effective... I've also seen the benefits of having some integral mortars or guns. We do not have any and I hate to rely on someone else's toys.

I agree with you. We should get those capabilities where they would be of the most use. Including mortar carriers.

I am looking forward to your paper 2B. I think it will be quite insightful.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 03, 2005, 01:20:56
I have just finished reading the entire armoured bulletin. Wow, great stuff.

I found it rather alarming after reading about how the US is going to be using the MGS and how it DOES NOT replace the tank, and how we are going to use it in conjunction with the TUA and MMEV's.

It seemed to me that we are intending to use it as "close" support of infantry operations, even in "complex terrain"? Will someone please tell me that it is only be looked at as such?

I agree that it would be a useful tool in uncomplex terrain, but to take it into close quarters when it does not have full tactical awareness sounds to me like a recipe for disaster.

Another part that caught me completely by surprise is the fact that the MMEV (ADATS) must take as much as 15 minutes to set up? Doesn't this severely disable rapid maneuver that these wheeled vehicles are supposed to enjoy? It seems to me that the cavalry you've talked about won't be able to use this vehicle. As well, the MMEV does not have self-protection abilities, thus needing additional close protection.

Is this truly the way we are going? Or is there some light at the end of the tunnel that you guys always seem to show me? :)
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 03, 2005, 01:42:43
Well, I have always looked at the MGS as a combination of the world's largest sniper rifle and a self-propelled anti-tank gun.  If used as you would use those two systems I can see it having its merits.  Fighting from concealed, prepared positions or from positions out of range of anything the enemy can throw at you.

It would not be used as a tank, but it could be used like German 88mms in WW2 or the British 17 pdr or more currently like the 105mm trailed guns used by a number of European countries to thicken up their anti-tank lines. Together with Javelin/Spike, Tow and/or Hellfire and Brimstone (Not necessarily the ADATS missile - the ADATS missile may be just one missile the MMEV could launch), not to mention a good thickening of Arty support, I think a Canadian force could wage a fairly successful anti-tank battle and hold ground. 

Now assaulting and taking contested ground will be another matter entirely.

However I think its primary purpose is to supply flanking protection in the close terrain battle and prevent enemy combatants entering or leaving the battle area.  This seems to have been the primary role of the MBTs in Iraq, standing in an open area (at least 200m from cover - the effective range of the RPG)  and dominating boulevards and freeways, thus cutting the towns up into bitesize morsels for the Infantry to chew on.  As well it would be a pretty useful bunker buster.

Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 03, 2005, 02:52:27
However I think its primary purpose is to supply flanking protection in the close terrain battle and prevent enemy combatants entering or leaving the battle area.   This seems to have been the primary role of the MBTs in Iraq, standing in an open area (at least 200m from cover - the effective range of the RPG)   and dominating boulevards and freeways, thus cutting the towns up into bitesize morsels for the Infantry to chew on.   As well it would be a pretty useful bunker buster.

If it was used is such ways, I could understand. Bagdad and other large cities have nice large open spaces from which the MGS could fire in support of Infantry without being in range of RPG's. I'm just wondering about this, since we have tended not to have such spaces to operate in. Being assigned smaller towns and villages (besides Kabul) for the most part. As well, the article was mentioning going to 3 vehicle troops (instead of 4) in order to better cover maneuvers inside of an urban area. This makes me think of tighter spaces.

If this is indeed the case, then that would also severely restrict the TUA's over watch ability and completely eliminate the MMEV's role. Although I'm sure the 2 and 2 troop of TUA and MMEV would not be tasked to go anywhere near an urban enviro.

Well, I have always looked at the MGS as a combination of the world's largest sniper rifle and a self-propelled anti-tank gun. If used as you would use those two systems I can see it having its merits. Fighting from concealed, prepared positions or from positions out of range of anything the enemy can throw at you.

I'm surprised you made this assumption Kirk? You believe that all conflicts we get involved in, in the future are only going to involve an opponent that cannot hit us beyond 2 kms (the effective range of the 105mm on the MGS)?

I'm looking forward to 2B's, CW's, and Majoor's thoughts on the use of the MGS in a maneuver formation. From reading that article, and your understanding of its use Kirk. I would consider it a enabler and nothing more.

( ;D I learned two new terms today.)
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 03, 2005, 03:31:59
No Zipper what I was saying was that IF the enemy had the ability to reach out and touch at 5 km, and the ground left me unconcealed, then I wouldn't be entering into a fight with only a 2 km system.  At that point I might have to rely on the TUA and the MMEV.  Or find another place to fight.  Or refuse the fight entirely.

On the other hand, if all the enemy can bring to the fight is what he can carry on his back, then having a 105mm rifle in my back pocket doesn't seem like a bad thing.

It's a matter of looking at your capabilities compared to those of your enemy and choosing your ground to suit.  Sometimes the appropriate thing to do is to refuse battle and wait for a better opportunity.

As to the use of the MGS in cities - my sense, from 9,000 miles away admittedly, is that the Iraqi cities,  like most Old cities are rabbit warrens with highways and boulevards and open areas creating natural fault lines along which they can be cut up.  A 2 km sightline along a Highway is conceivable with little or no dead ground, this seem to make it difficult for the opposition to infiltrate and exfiltrate across these "cut lines", isolating the cordoned area effectively.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Infanteer on March 03, 2005, 05:49:43
http://www.defence.gov.au/army/lwsc/Publications/AAJ_Winter_2004.pdf

Check out this article in the latest edition of the Australian Army Journal - seems that the Aussies have some of their own ideas on the "CAV" structure.

(The PDF file is the entire journal, so look for the article "Australian Light-Armoured Vehicles (ASLAV) as Mounted Cavalry: Vanguard for the Hardened Army by Lieutenant Colonel Roger Noble).

It seems that the Aussies run their "Cav" in a Squadron of 3 Troops.   Each Troop has 4 Bricks which consist of: 3 ASLAV's and a four man scout team (with various weapons systems).   So, not only is their an infantry/armoured grouping at the Troop level, but the article states that in a pinch, the Cavalry can act as transport for Light Infantry, with a Cavalry Squadron "mechanizing" a Light Infantry Company.

Interesting stuff.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 03, 2005, 13:59:39
I couldn't let this pass by-------

Quote
It is worth noting that, while the US Marines
in their march north towards Baghdad during
the Second Gulf War in early 2003 suffered
multiple hits from enemy weapons systems on
their light-armoured vehicles, no single vehicle
was comprehensively destroyed by enemy
action.

This Aussie Cavalry Commander seems reasonably comfortable with his kit ;)
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 03, 2005, 21:14:29
Very interesting. I found that his idea that the Cavalry NOT be a mainly reconnaissance force very interesting. As he said that it did not work in WWII for them or the US, and yet it did work for us? I think it adds some good points and thoughts to what 2B may be thinking though.

Kirk - I agree. We would have to choose our terrain carefully, as well as choosing whether or not to engage. All these things are important. I am just of the opinion that it is not always OUR choice.

As to the "older" cities in the world. I would agree. They tend to be quite choppy and broken up, which is not conducive to MGS use. I think Bagdad is a more modern city in that it has wide straight roadways that would be well covered by MGS fire support. Other cities in Iraq are of the old type though.

There just seems to be some very glaring holes in our way of thinking and our choice of formations that may prove costly in the long run.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 03, 2005, 21:26:03
Zipper:

I think that you will find that Basra and Sadr City, at least judging from aerial photographs, are pretty congested as well.  In Basra it was apparently so tight that they couldn't get Landrovers down some streets.

Tanks and Warriors were largely used to establish cordon perimeters as far as I can see.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 03, 2005, 21:36:44
By the way, after reading the article on the DFS Squadron and the role of the MMEV, I just became a bit more of a potential fan.

The keyword for me was networking.  Apparently if one ADATs vehicle can see a target it can launch all the missiles on the three accompanying vehicles as well.  So if this is a "wireless network" and the rest of the Squadron can be incorporated in the network then it leaves open the option of an MGS sighting an MBT Squadron, designating targets and, assuming that all 6 MMEVs discussed are within 8 km of the target, launching up to 48 missiles from launchers  that are 8 km from the target.  The MGS may not have to unmask itself.

If they can make that work then they are much of the way to the capability that a_majoor has been describing with his hellfire and brimstone LAV.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 03, 2005, 21:45:28
The keyword for me was networking.   Apparently if one ADATs vehicle can see a target it can launch all the missiles on the three accompanying vehicles as well.   So if this is a "wireless network" and the rest of the Squadron can be incorporated in the network then it leaves open the option of an MGS sighting an MBT Squadron, designating targets and, assuming that all 6 MMEVs discussed are within 8 km of the target, launching up to 48 missiles from launchers   that are 8 km from the target.   The MGS may not have to unmask itself.

If they can make that work then they are much of the way to the capability that a_majoor has been describing with his hellfire and brimstone LAV.

I would agree. But I think the optics on the MGS, LAV, and TUA are different enough for this idea not to work. But MAN, if it did. ;D BOOM BABY!
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on March 03, 2005, 22:15:23
It isn't a matter of optics, old 031 me with a pair of binoculars, a compass and a map can do the same thing so long as the MMEV is programmed somewhere in my CEOI; either in person ("Tango 31c this is India 11a, fire mission, over), or through a digital link from the ISTAR CC (As I make a contact report to my CS 1, the ISTAR operator listening in identifies that a masked MMEV troop is in range, and the standing orders allow him to transmit the coordinates and fire order).

This frees me of the responsibility of trying to keep track of where everything is (I need to focus on my job first); and is conceptually applicable to any sort of weapons system available on the battlefield, from a pike wielding phalanx to an aerospace fighter loitering in Low Earth Orbit (assets beyond the moon are  considered strategic reserves  ;)).

The true key to the Revolution in Military Affairs is not the sexy hardwear like fire and forget missiles, but rather the organization that allows you to use them to the best effect. The French invented a reasonably effective machine gun in the 1860s, but decided it was a form of artillery, so it never was employed to any great effect in the Franco Prussian war of the 1870s. In the same war, Prussian Infantry were shot down in great numbers because they were still fighting using organizations and tactics from the "Black powder" era, despite the fact both sides had breach loading rifles!

Lets move beyond the hardwear issues, unless there is a technical deficiency which renders the hardwear ineffective in the intended role (i.e. MGS has a crap autoloader and only 18 rounds available, or ADATS is strictly LOS [as far as I can tell]). Conceptually, a wheeled gun platform can be effective (see the AMX-10 RC), and substituting a true long range fire and forget missile like Brimestone or FOG-M would make the missile carrier effective to the 8km mark.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Le Adder Noir on March 07, 2005, 13:48:42
I agree with Artorius

It was the organization and C3 of the German Army that allowed their inferior equipment to defeat their Superior French equivalents....
But the Panzer Divs were more flexible a weapon than the DLM's and DCM's (Division Legere Mechanique and Division Curiasseur Mechanique?).....The Russians suffered from the same issue until they improved their C3

Perhaps the we should consider the army as a whole when discussing RMA....remembering the Germans created their "new model army" units first and added the cutting edge equipment later.....

What will a brigade task force (or the Army as a whole) look like,  post-transformation?

What units will perform the screen, close combat and support roles?
How will the larger unit commander employ and control his units?
How can we make our kit...pried from the tightly clenched fist of the Finance minister,  defeat equipment that is qualitatively superior?

A brigade with :
1 Armoured Cavalry Unit (along the lines discussed by 2Bravo and Artorius, including an "assault" squadron or two ) all "black-hatted"
(all trades in the unit wear black hat indicated role...Corps = role)
2 Mechanized Infantry units (in Lav III Apcs w/ the stryker weapon station, an MGS "assault gun" platoon, a pioneer pl, recce pl and 120mm mor sp lav pl)
(All pers badged inf)

1 Fire Support regt of the RCA w/ 3 MMEV Batteries, 1 Mor Battery and an ISTAR /  UAV Battery
1 Field Engineering Squadron on Lav hulls
1 Logistics support unit.

A Headquarters capable of performing its functions via data-link...perhaps allowing reduced numbers in the HQ cells of all units....
(Except I.T.  perhaps the LOG Unit will contain an IT Support Platoon...... >:D )

Will we have 3 Maneuver Brigades and a light brigade? (all the light Battalions tasked with a ranger / commando role as discussed in several places on these forums...)





Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on March 09, 2005, 14:41:15
One thing we all need to look at is the CSS issue. Since I am not a loggie, this is difficult for me to conceptualize exactly how this is to be done, but either we need to find a way to make a Cavalry unit self sufficient like a wooden sailing ship, or have CSS roaming across the battlespace with some sort of "push" or "pull" system.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Tango2Bravo on March 09, 2005, 14:50:40
We did a JCATs exercise last week and CSS for the recce sqns was a big issue.  Coyotes and LAVs can go for a day or two without ammo or fuel (if they can bring their A ech with them), but casualty evacuation and recovery will always be major issues.  I've tried to address this in my paper but it may still need fleshing out.

The CSS concept of push and pull will still work, but the CSS elements must be able to move long distances through unsecure areas.  Armoured CSS vehicle and escorts are one way to go about it.  Using helicopters can help (especially for casualty evacuation) but you can't always rely on them (weather, air defence threat).

If the forward moving CSS elements were organized like an armoured Sqn A1 echelon with the SSM in a LAV III and several Bisons in the group then we are going in the right direction.  The UMS should be able to work well forward and have a protection element.

More to follow...

2B
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Chris Pook on March 09, 2005, 15:45:49
How about this:
http://www.military.com/soldiertech/0%2C14632%2CSoldiertech_SHERPA%2C%2C00.html

Plus this:
http://www.flug-revue.rotor.com/FRTypen/FRC-130J.htm

Or even this:
http://www.flug-revue.rotor.com/FRTypen/FRC-27J.htm

For logistic support for a wide-ranging force.

8-16 pallets (8-16 tonnes) of supplies dropped from 25,000 feet to within 100m  of a designated GPS coordinates.  Aircraft can be 9 miles away from the drop zone.  Ground personnel don't need to mark the drop zone.  Or even be anywhere near it.

Para-depots.

Concept of operations:

Drop people in, Drop or Drive vehicles in, Drop caches in for resupply, Helos to extract personnel.

Technological improvements is making the Burma campaign look more practical than it did in 1942.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 10, 2005, 01:18:53
If the forward moving CSS elements were organized like an armoured Sqn A1 echelon with the SSM in a LAV III and several Bisons in the group then we are going in the right direction. The UMS should be able to work well forward and have a protection element.

Ok, excuse me for my confusion again. But what part of the equation is the CSS?

Is it the A ech or the B ech?

Because if it is the A ech formation, then I would think that a cavalry unit would follow its armoured examples and have its entire formation in LAV's or some armoured equivalent.

If it isn't, then I don't know. To have the B ech in LAV's as well would be expensive.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Thucydides on March 10, 2005, 08:58:07
There are many ways to do this. The example which got me thinking of this was the American Infantry company driving across the desert in the Persian Gulf War to cut the Basrs-Baghdad highway. This was a "lash-up" convoy with 16 M-2s and 25 HEMMET trucks, clearly not the best way to go about supporting long range Cavalry missions.

Armoured CSS vehicles have advantages and disadvantages, and support one way of doing things. A fleet of high mobility trucks gives us different ORBATs and different concepts of operations. A mixed fleet would be expensive, but offers more flexibility as well. Lots of thinking and experimentation will have to be done to hammer out the right mix of equipment and organization to support Cavalry operations.
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Zipper on March 13, 2005, 01:59:07
By the sounds of it, your talking about B ech and maybe even further back in transport troop?

If that is the case, we can look at how we used to do it with 4CMBG in those semi armoured tractor vehicles that I for the life of me cannot remember right now. ???

So what if we came up with some kind of enlarged load area LAV transport with maybe an armoured trailer attached to carry the extra supplies? Have that escorted by a Cav. troop and you may make it through?
Title: Re: Canadian Armoured Cavalry
Post by: Haligonian on February 29, 2012, 18:56:10
Tango2Bravo,

So did your paper ever get published?