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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Military/History Related Hobbies > Orders of Battle

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Orders of Battle Orders-of-battle, TO&E's, and related information on who fought where and what they brought to the battle.

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  #16  
Old 02 Aug 17, 16:57
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My mistake . Still What mobility does the 2 BCT have? It should made it into an air assault brigade? Taking the Strykers Away from the 2nd BCT was a bad idea they 81st should've gotten new ones.
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Old 02 Aug 17, 18:03
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The National Guard getting brand new vehicles? What a novel concept! All we have to do is find money to budget it...

Most Light Infantry can jump out of helicopters and become Airmobile. The problem is finding the helicopter units to carry them! The Army is retiring old helicopters and not replacing them one on one as they leave the inventory.

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Old 02 Aug 17, 18:04
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My mistake . Still What mobility does the 2 BCT have? It should made it into an air assault brigade? Taking the Strykers Away from the 2nd BCT was a bad idea they 81st should've gotten new ones.
All of the Infantry BCTs are capable of air assaulting- none have any special equipment (or assigned helicopters, like the UKs 16th Air Assault Brigade). There is ZERO difference between an IBCT from 3rd (until it converts back to Armor), 4th, 10th, 25th and one from 101st except the lineage and designation.

I'm not sure how much wheeled mobility is left in the IBCTs after the tactical wheeled vehicle reductions from a couple of years ago. IIRC, before that reduction, each infantry battalion had enough lift (in its forward support company) two move one of its three rifle companies, while the brigade support battalion's transportation company had enough for two more, allowing the BCT to lift 4 of its 6 rifle companies simultaneously. I'm fairly certain that was reduced, but don't know for sure how much.
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Old 02 Aug 17, 18:06
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The National Guard getting brand new vehicles? What a novel concept! All we have to do is find money to budget it...
The 55th SBCT in PA got new Stryker vehicles. At least some units fielded new M1 tanks, too. I'll bet that ARNG units that field JLTVs will get new vehicles, too. The hand-me-down was an issue of reorganization, not passing older vehicles to the ARNG.
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Old 02 Aug 17, 18:22
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I remember when the North Carolina National Guard got new M-1 tanks! Flash forward to the First Gulf War and I wrote to find out where the unit was? It had been deactivated! It seems the good ole boys there could not maintain the tank! I am surprized they did not store the tanks at an Army Base and have active duty personnel maintaining them. The Louisiana Guard kept their M-1's at Fort Polk for years. They did get an M-3 Bradley for short periods of the year visiting the Mechanized Company Armories. I know this because the Guard Armory in DeQuincy, Louisiana is next to the High School, where I was working. There is no record where the North Carolina Abrams went after leaving the state.

It is a bit of a shell game when the Army issues equipment between Guard and active units. A lot of Guard heavy units have been converted to Light units since 2000. By sheer coincidence M-1's and Bradleys have been showing up in foreign army inventories. Coincidence?

I am not saying this was not part of a well designed plan. I am saying I do not like it.

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Old 04 Aug 17, 07:52
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I remember when the North Carolina National Guard got new M-1 tanks! Flash forward to the First Gulf War and I wrote to find out where the unit was? It had been deactivated! It seems the good ole boys there could not maintain the tank!
Do you have any evidence that the reason for inactivation was poor maintenance? The NCARNG unit with M1s was a roundout unit, and that is about the time that we were eliminating the roundout program and reducing the heavy divisions from 10 or 11 battalions to 9.

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I am surprized they did not store the tanks at an Army Base and have active duty personnel maintaining them. The Louisiana Guard kept their M-1's at Fort Polk for years.
That is the practice I'm familiar with, except that the maintenance was done by contractors and/or full time guardsmen- its not like active duty units have time to go maintain someone else's vehicles. The term of Mobilization and Training Equipment Sites (MATES).

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Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
They did get an M-3 Bradley for short periods of the year visiting the Mechanized Company Armories. I know this because the Guard Armory in DeQuincy, Louisiana is next to the High School, where I was working.
It would make more sense to send M2 Infantry Fighting Vehicles to mechanized infantry company armories, since M3 Cavalry Fighting Vehicles are found in cavalry units, not in infantry units (other than in the battalion scout platoons, in some configurations).

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There is no record where the North Carolina Abrams went after leaving the state.
There's a record somewhere. Just because you don't have it doesn't mean it doesn't exist. If I had to guess, it would be the FT Bragg MATES, but they could have been sent for rebuild or just sitting in the boneyard somewhere.

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Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
It is a bit of a shell game when the Army issues equipment between Guard and active units. A lot of Guard heavy units have been converted to Light units since 2000. By sheer coincidence M-1's and Bradleys have been showing up in foreign army inventories. Coincidence?
I know that Australia, Kuwait, Saudi, Iraq and Egypt have fielded M1s. Since the US produced over 8100 M1s, and the current force of 15 ABCTs requires ~1500 of them, the conversion to light units is unlikely to be about the delivery of M1s to other countries, especially since some of the other countries have had their M1s produced specifically for them. You implication that the US is lightening its forces in order to sell tanks to other countries is silly- it is selling tanks because it has decided to lighten the force structure and no longer needs the tanks but wants to keep the manufacturing base to modify base M1s into M1A2s open.

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I am not saying this was not part of a well designed plan. I am saying I do not like it.
You imply that you think it is part of some plan with your remarks ("Coincidence?") and then claim that you aren't. You're either an extremely poor communicator using this medium, and being extremely passive-aggressive.

I don't like the lightening of our forces either- and I'm a light guy. I think we've got a huge gap in the middle that is only partially filled by the Strykers, and we've been lightening our forces to do extra-Constitutional missions and ignoring our proper role. I don't care about selling stuff to other countries. The Aussies are our friends- its a toss up whether they or the Brits are more reliable allies. The rest of the operators of M1s are no threat to the US- 90 days without US support and their tanks will be NMC because they are culturally incapable of doing maintenance, even if their gunnery is pretty good. I'm not betting on any significant skill at unit maneuvers, since they can't train, either.
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  #22  
Old 04 Aug 17, 10:47
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My information on the National Guard Armor Battalion from North Carolina came from the Public Information Office in Washington, DC. What I did not mention is North Carolina also had an Armor Battalion in its Mechanized Brigade (30?). The officer who wrote me back said that the demobilized Battalion could not handle maintenance. Why they chose an M-60 Battalion to stay active over a M-1 Battalion was not gone into. Even if the other Battalion inherited the M-1's, it was a lose/lose because they had to retrain the unit on a new tank and they lost the trained personnel.

The Louisiana Guard attracts quality personnel by offering free college tuition to its members. North Carolina did not offer this program back then. I found out about Fort Polk doing the M-1 maintenance several years back. There well could have been full time Guard personnel involved, but the wording in the article said active duty Army was involved. The Armor Battalion was stationed in Shreveport. It converted to a Cavalry Battalion with drones and such.

Thank you for reminding me about the M-2/3 versions of the Bradley. Normally I am better at remembering that. I can't say if the local Companies were doing maintenance on them if they were being kept at Fort Polk. They were taken away when the Army decided the Louisiana Guard had to go Lite. The computer systems and lasers onboard may need monthly maintenance for all I know.

I can't say which tanks have been sold to "friendly" countries. I do remember the Iraqi Army abandoning several to ISIS troops who were thrilled to add them to its inventory. I do know that the M-1 has received a lot of modifications in main gun and armor since we bought the first ones. The Marines made a point that they were replacing their M-60 tanks with improved M-1's (120mm main guns) when they were asked about taking the M-60 to war in the First Gulf War. I doubt the countries we sold them to would accept 105mm main gun tanks.

I don't like the "new" Light Infantry concept. I can see a need for a couple of LI divisions, but why convert all Infantry to this? I think we would be better served to go back to the old ROAD style Infantry Battalions with truck transport. Since this does not depend on Air Transport to move strategically, you could go back to 12 man Infantry Squads.

When the Louisiana Guard went "Lite" they lost all the trucks and vehicles in the heavy battalions. I saw a five ton truck working with a Interstate Maintenance Company in Lake Charles right after the announcement that the Louisiana Guard was converting. It was still in its woodland camouflage with 3rd/156th Inf markings. Louisiana can use the vehicles during hurricane relief operations.

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Old 04 Aug 17, 20:42
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My information on the National Guard Armor Battalion from North Carolina came from the Public Information Office in Washington, DC. What I did not mention is North Carolina also had an Armor Battalion in its Mechanized Brigade (30?). The officer who wrote me back said that the demobilized Battalion could not handle maintenance. Why they chose an M-60 Battalion to stay active over a M-1 Battalion was not gone into. Even if the other Battalion inherited the M-1's, it was a lose/lose because they had to retrain the unit on a new tank and they lost the trained personnel.
So we have your interpretation of some response that you can't produce from 25+ years ago.

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The Louisiana Guard attracts quality personnel by offering free college tuition ....
I doubt the countries we sold them to would accept 105mm main gun tanks.
These paragraphs were a whole bunch of words that were irrelevant to the conversation.

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Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
I don't like the "new" Light Infantry concept. I can see a need for a couple of LI divisions, but why convert all Infantry to this? I think we would be better served to go back to the old ROAD style Infantry Battalions with truck transport. Since this does not depend on Air Transport to move strategically, you could go back to 12 man Infantry Squads.
The US Army hasn't had "Light Infantry" since ~2004-2006. US Army "Light Infantry" means the Infantry Divisions (Light) formed on GEN Wickham's guidance ~1984-1988: 7th ID(L), 25th ID(L), 6th ID (L), 10th MTN(LI), and 29th ID(L). Based on a requirement for transportation in some limited number of aircraft sorties, the division was stripped down significantly, and known to require a large augmentation from corps assets to be fully combat capable. The Infantry Brigade Combat Teams (what I think you are referring to by " "new" Light Infantry concept") is clearly, IMO, a lightened form of "line infantry" (to use BG Was de Czege's conceptualization from Infantry Journal article "3 Kinds of Infantry"), not really "light infantry". We've been over that before.

Under the initial modular structure, infantry battalions had a Forward Support Company (FSC) habitually attached from the Brigade Support Battalion (BSB). In this FSC's Distribution Platoon was a mobility section with 12 (later reduced to 10x) M1078 2-1/2t LMTV trucks- roughly enough to lift a rifle company. In addition, the FSC had a Class V Section with PLS or 5t trucks. In addition, the BSB's Distribution Company had 4 (later reduced to 2) Light Truck Squads with an additional 24x (later 12x) M1078 2-1/2t trucks.

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Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
When the Louisiana Guard went "Lite" they lost all the trucks and vehicles in the heavy battalions. I saw a five ton truck working with a Interstate Maintenance Company in Lake Charles right after the announcement that the Louisiana Guard was converting. It was still in its woodland camouflage with 3rd/156th Inf markings. Louisiana can use the vehicles during hurricane relief operations.
I haven't gone back to look at what a mechanized infantry or tank battalion was authorized for 2-1/2t and 5t trucks, but since their combat elements are mounted, I'll guarantee that they don't have units of trucks dedicated to the transport of personnel, like the IBCTs do.

The truck that you saw was probably an older model that was replaced by the FMTVs and sold off through DRMO.
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Old 05 Aug 17, 00:30
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So we have your interpretation of some response that you can't produce from 25+ years ago.

*I have been writing to my Congressman and Senators since before 1983. I would like to show you the responses, but the only ones I have is some e-mails that are not complete. I lost my house in 2011 and the letters are gone. I did keep the Microfiche the Public Information Bureau sent me. It is in storage. Included in the bundle are the TOE's for the Lite Infantry Battalion, Brigade and Division. After I alerted my delegation that the 256th was being targeted for conversion to a Combat Support Brigade they got that changed to a Light Infantry Brigade.

These paragraphs were a whole bunch of words that were irrelevant to the conversation.

I thought they were pertinent.

The US Army hasn't had "Light Infantry" since ~2004-2006. US Army "Light Infantry" means the Infantry Divisions (Light) formed on GEN Wickham's guidance ~1984-1988: 7th ID(L), 25th ID(L), 6th ID (L), 10th MTN(LI), and 29th ID(L). Based on a requirement for transportation in some limited number of aircraft sorties, the division was stripped down significantly, and known to require a large augmentation from corps assets to be fully combat capable. The Infantry Brigade Combat Teams (what I think you are referring to by " "new" Light Infantry concept") is clearly, IMO, a lightened form of "line infantry" (to use BG Was de Czege's conceptualization from Infantry Journal article "3 Kinds of Infantry"), not really "light infantry". We've been over that before.

Under the initial modular structure, infantry battalions had a Forward Support Company (FSC) habitually attached from the Brigade Support Battalion (BSB). In this FSC's Distribution Platoon was a mobility section with 12 (later reduced to 10x) M1078 2-1/2t LMTV trucks- roughly enough to lift a rifle company. In addition, the FSC had a Class V Section with PLS or 5t trucks. In addition, the BSB's Distribution Company had 4 (later reduced to 2) Light Truck Squads with an additional 24x (later 12x) M1078 2-1/2t trucks.

*The 256th Infantry Brigade had a Transport Battalion, the 199th Transport Battalion in Ruston. It is now a school for leadership, NCO's, OCS and other studies and located in Camp Beauregard. Louisiana now has NO Trucks for emergencies. In the First Gulf War one of the people activated with the 199th Transport was a 48 year old Grandmother. The 5 ton Truck was fairly new and attached to the HQ of the 3/156th Inf Reg. I know because the unit is located in North Lake Charles off of Broad Street. I played a number of football games next door at Wildcat Stadium in my youth. The Light Infantry Battalion has a few Hummers for the CO, XO and FS to ride around in.

One of the selling points of the Light Infantry Battalion is publications claimed it had a better leader to led ratio. When I got the Microfiche I was able to compare the two and the Light Company was smaller and the Battalion had an extra captain on Staff. The next thing I saw was all the Infantry Divisions and Brigades was converting to Light. I had a moment of humor imagining one group of Generals hollering "Tastes Great!" and another group hollering "Less Filling!". It seemed to imitate the old Miller Lite commercial popular in the 80's.

I haven't gone back to look at what a mechanized infantry or tank battalion was authorized for 2-1/2t and 5t trucks, but since their combat elements are mounted, I'll guarantee that they don't have units of trucks dedicated to the transport of personnel, like the IBCTs do.

The truck that you saw was probably an older model that was replaced by the FMTVs and sold off through DRMO.

* Actually the old Mechanized and Tank Battalions did have Trucks to transport Maintenance and Repair crews. Those welders and engine mechanics and even cooks needed to get around.
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Old 05 Aug 17, 02:24
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I looked at the Louisiana Guard Wiki article and I was mistaken in calling the 199th a Transport Battalion. It was a Combat Support Battalion. One Company was a Medical Company and one was Maintenance. I don't recall what the third Company was. The 48 year old Grandmother I referred to above was a truck driver in the battalion.

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Old 05 Aug 17, 09:14
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...After I alerted my delegation that the 256th was being targeted for conversion to a Combat Support Brigade they got that changed to a Light Infantry Brigade.
No, the converted to an IBCT. There's a significant difference. We've gone over this before. If I can find an old FKSM with the pre-modular TOEs I'll break it down for you. The 256th was never "Light Infantry".

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The 256th Infantry Brigade had a Transport Battalion, the 199th Transport Battalion in Ruston. It is now a school for leadership, NCO's, OCS and other studies and located in Camp Beauregard. Louisiana now has NO Trucks for emergencies....
One of the selling points of the Light Infantry Battalion is publications claimed it had a better leader to led ratio. When I got the Microfiche I was able to compare the two and the Light Company was smaller and the Battalion had an extra captain on Staff. The next thing I saw was all the Infantry Divisions and Brigades was converting to Light....
Not a Transportation Battalion, a Support, Forward Support or Brigade Support Battalion, depending on the iteration of TOEs we're discussing. More on this later, but the assertion that "Louisiana now has NO Trucks for emergencies" is simply and demonstrably false. We've been over this discussion of "leader to led ratio" before- you appear to misunderstand what "ratio" means, and how you change a ratio. Like I explained in my post @20:42 last night, it isn't "Light Infantry", which applies to something specific, but to Infantry Brigade Combat Teams, which are a very different things.

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Actually the old Mechanized and Tank Battalions did have Trucks to transport Maintenance and Repair crews. Those welders and engine mechanics and even cooks needed to get around.
Certainly, and IBCTs have trucks for those things, too. As well as to haul ammunition, supplies, tow artillery, etc, etc. The point that you seemed to have missed is that IBCTs have trucks whose sole job is to haul the personnel of the rifle companies when required. Those don't exist in mechanized units.

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I looked at the Louisiana Guard Wiki article and I was mistaken in calling the 199th a Transport Battalion. It was a Combat Support Battalion. One Company was a Medical Company and one was Maintenance. I don't recall what the third Company was. The 48 year old Grandmother I referred to above was a truck driver in the battalion.
Not a Combat Support Battalion (that acronym hasn't existed, AFAIK), but a Support Battalion, Forward Support Battalion, or Brigade Support Battalion, depending on the time period. Under the first ROAD iteration, it was just a Support Battalion, and I haven't looked up it's structure. Under the Army of Excellence (or maybe closely following that conversion), it became a Forward Support Battalion, with 3 companies: HQ&A (which may have actually been two separate companies-HHC and A- in mechanized units, or in separate brigades) had the battalion staff and supply/distribution assets; B was a field maintenance company; C was a medical company. Since ~2006 (2004-2007, IIRC 256th converted in 2006 after their Iraq rotation), the Brigade Support Battalion has been the largest in the BCT, with:
- HHC for the battalion staff
- A Company for supply and distribution, including the truck squads noted in my post above
- B Company for maintenance
- C Company for medical
- a number of forward support companies. In the first iteration (with 2 maneuver battalions and Brigade Special Troops Battalion) these were D Company (Cavalry Squadron FSC), E Company and F Company (Infantry [or Combined Arms Battalion in heavy BCTs] Battalion FSC, and G Company (Field Artillery Battalion FSC). In the newer iteration of modular BCTs (with 3 maneuver battalions and engineer battalion), these were: D Company (Cavalry Squadron FSC), E Company (Engineer Battalion FSC), F Company (Field Artillery Battalion FSC), and three maneuver battalion FSCs: G Company, H Company, and J Company. The only thing I can't figure out is why we decided to skip I Company, when the US Army tradition is to have an I Company and skip J Company.
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