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Flashcards in Rifle Platoon in the Offense Deck (58):

2 Types of attack are



MCDP 1-0 defines a hasty attack as

“an attack when the commander decides to trade preparation time for speed to exploit an opportunity.”


A hasty attack is used when

a fleeting opportunity must be rapidly exploited.


To be successful, hasty attack plans must be

simple and flexible, and execution will rely heavily on unit SOPs and battle drills to replace the lack of detail in the order


MCDP 1-0 defines a deliberate attack as

“a type of offensive action characterized by pre-planned and coordinated employment of firepower and maneuver to close with and destroy the enemy.”


Deliberate attacks are used when

there is no need to rapidly exploit an enemy weakness, or when a hasty attack will not defeat the enemy.


Planning begins when the commander receives

the warning order or operations order from higher


At the platoon level, attacks will be

frontal or flanking


A frontal attack is used to

rapidly destroy a weak enemy force, or to fix an enemy in place to support a flanking attack.


A flanking attack uses

fire and maneuver in order to gain a position of advantage against an enemy vulnerability.


A flanking attack usually uses a

support by fire position that diverts attention away from the main effort and uses fires to fix the enemy in place, preventing them from reorienting on the main effort.


After his initial estimate of the situation, a platoon commander must develop a

tentative plan, based off of the EMLCOA that is derived from the Tactical Planning Process (METT-TC).


The foundation of a Platoon Commander’s tactical thought must be based upon

 The Maneuver Warfare Concepts discussed in MCDP-1, Warfighting
 The tactical tenets presented in MCDP 1-3, Tactics
 The principals of war that you were taught in B2F2737 Tactical Fundamentals
 Mass
 Objective
 Offensive
 Security
 Economy of Force
 Maneuver
 Unity of Command
 Surprise
 Simplicity


The warning order allows subordinate leaders to begin

their own planning while the commander writes the full order


COC coordination can provide

updates to all aspects of a commander’s METT-TC analysis, but is especially useful for completing the picture on Troops and Fire Support Available.


a few items for S-2 to consider when planning COC Coordination

Ground, signal, and human intelligence sources may be able to provide information on the terrain and enemy. Check debriefs from units that may have patrolled the area before for information on terrain. UAVs can recon the route and the objective and provide real-time information on terrain and enemy. The intelligence officer can better support you if he or she knows what information you need to plan your mission.


a few items for S-3 to consider when planning COC Coordination

If available and requested, aviation assets can recon the route and objective to provide real-time information on terrain and enemy. The battalion may also use aviation assets as part of preparatory fires. Submit list of targets to support leader’s recon. Submit list of targets to support the attack. Confirm the locations and missions of adjacent and supporting units, to include CASEVAC assets, reinforcements, and fire support.


a few things for S-4 to consider when planning COC Coordination

Request logistics necessary to accomplish the mission, to include ammunition, chow, water, specialized equipment such as breach kits, transportation, fuel, etc. Try to anticipate what missions might follow the attack and what logistics they might require. Carry extra logistics into the attack or coordinate a resupply to be delivered immediately on consolidation if follow-on missions are known.


a few items for S-6 to consider when planning COC Coordination

Get updated CEOI and challenges/passwords. Check fills and timing on encrypted radios. A platoon will need a minimum of two radios (one for support by fire, one for maneuver) to ensure the best command and control in a flanking attack.


A leader’s recon is

a small, leadership-heavy reconnaissance patrol that will operate in close proximity to the enemy.


Priorities of recon should

work from the enemy back to friendly—picking an assault position first is a waste of time if the patrol discovers later that the enemy is in a different location or has a different orientation.


When choosing a support by fire position, the commander should consider the following

The support by fire position should ideally be located on the enemy frontage

The support by fire position’s direction of fire should ideally be located 90 degrees offset from the maneuver element’s direction of assault

Should have cover and concealment


Some Tactical Control Measures that will be useful in controlling a platoon attack are

Assembly Area
Attack Position
Line of Departure
Phase Line
Release Point
Target Reference Point
Assault Position
Limit of Advance
Linkup Point


The commander updates his estimate of the situation (METT-TC analysis) in several ways:

higher’s order, COC coordination, and the leader’s recon


A detailed fire support plan will support the

scheme of maneuver


Fires in the attack are broken into what three categories:

Preparatory fires
Fires in support of conduct
Fires in support of consolidation


Tasks provide subordinate units with

their missions


Ensure that supporting effort tasking statements are worded so that

supporting efforts understand how they support the main effort.


Detailed coordinating instructions support what

the rest of the order. They coordinate actions between two or more units, and include any of higher’s coordinating instructions that pertain to your unit.


Administration and Logistics ensures the platoon has what

the platoon has enough ammunition, chow, water, batteries, special equipment, transportation, fuel, etc. to accomplish the mission and plan resupply for any known follow-on missions.


Some additional signals necessary for an attack using a support by fire are:

Commence: When to begin firing
Shift (sometimes)


Displacement criteria are:

Objective: Where the unit is going
Route: Most direct or most covered and concealed.
Time: The displacement signal.


The platoon commander will issue the order to the platoon. If time permits the platoon commander will issue the order to the entire platoon over a

terrain model large enough to accommodate all three squads and attachments.


Supervision that the commander should conduct in the preparatory phase includes, but is not limited to:

Pre-Combat Checks
Pre-Combat Inspections


Supervision in the conduct and consolidation phases involves the commander ensuring that

subordinates are adhering to his orders and intent


During movement to the objective, terrain is the

primary cover


Formations during movement to the objective are based on METT-TC, and will reflect the

relative importance of speed/control versus security/deployability


Column provides the best

speed and control, and is ideal when conducting night operations or moving through thick vegetation and canalizing terrain


Wedge is a flexible formation that provides good

speed and control and good all-around security and deployability. It is used when the enemy situation is uncertain


Echelon is slower and more

difficult to control than many formations. It provides excellent security and deployability to the front and in the direction of the echelon. It is typically used to guard an exposed flank.


Vee is slow and difficult to control because

there are two lead elements
Vee is typically used when the enemy is to the front or when crossing a large open area.


Line movement is

Slowest and most difficult to control
Line is typically used in the assault once oriented on a known enemy


Actions on the objective begin when

terrain no longer covers our normal movement from enemy main body fires.


Only EFFECTIVE fires allow this



Rates of fire typically used by the

support by fire position are sustained and rapid


Support by Fire Considerations are

The sustained rate of fire provides average suppression and conserves ammunition—in most cases, a round on target every five seconds will keep the enemy’s head down as effectively as two or three rounds every five seconds

The rapid rate of fire provides more suppression, but uses double the ammunition. This will cause weapons to overheat and malfunction more often, and begins to affect soldiers’ load—a machinegun squad will go through 14 pounds of ammunition per minute at the rapid rate.


The commander must take this into account when planning for the assault

time/distance into account when planning for the assault.


During the assault, the commander and the support by fire element leader are both responsible for maintaining

situational awareness on how much ammunition remains in the support by fire position versus the maneuver element’s distance from the objective


Placing automatic weapons on the flank the maneuver element is assaulting provides better suppression on

targets that affect the maneuver element most, as well as better geometries of fire.


Placing the support by fire element leader in the center of the position provides the best overall

control of fires


During actions on the objective, the platoon commander has several responsibilities:

The platoon commander must ensure that the objective is effectively suppressed and isolated before exposing his maneuver element to the enemy fields of fire.

Control the maneuver element. To do this, the platoon commander will use his base unit.

Coordinate with higher and adjacent. This may involve requesting casualty evacuation or reinforcement, or updating them on a changing situation (such as enemy withdrawing into an adjacent unit AO).


As the attack culminates on the objective and the determination is made to transition into

consolidation, the platoon commander’s primary focus becomes establishing local security in order to prepare for a potential enemy counter-attack or reinforcement and provide the opportunity to reconstitute his forces.


The squad leaders are the primary executors of what process

SAFE process


SAFE stands for what

Automatic weapons on avenues of approach
Fields of fire and Entrenchment


Prior to any other events occurring, the platoon commander must next determine his capabilities and level of combat effectiveness following the attack. This can be done by analyzing the information collected from the subordinate leaders utilizing what reports



ACE stands for



The platoon commander should also submit reports to

higher; at the minimum, this should include a SITREP. It may also include specialized reports as required, as well as any resupply requests that the platoon needs to accomplish follow-on missions.


At this point, the platoon commander should plan—execute pre-planned—follow-on operations. Follow-on operations may be

offensive, defensive, or retrograde