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Future war: infantry squad of the XXI century
Material posted: Publication date: 22-06-2016
Recently published on the website War on the Rocks article by Jules Hirst (Hurst Jules) "An Infantry Squad for the 21st Century" (Infantry squad of the XXI century) — insightful look at the main points of the prospective development Department. The centre of the learning and improving of combat skills in Fort Benning infantry squad calls "the Foundation of the decisive force" and the smallest maneuverable unit on the battlefield. But in the world of the intangible is more important than another. Marine is located in the centre of the battlefield, and all the weapons built around him (her) to force the enemy to obey our will.

The strength of the infantry branch is the Foundation of our army. In 15 years of war, we have learned that the American armed forces have no equal in the ability to quickly identify, engage and destroy the enemy. That is, if you are not part of the light infantry division, which is fighting in isolation from the main forces and cannot rely on the support of other arms. Fighting in such places as the checkpoint ranch house and the village of Wanat showed that primitive adversary with a simple radio, AK-47 and RPG-7, it can fight and pose a serious threat to the us infantry during the hours of fighting. Today, the American infantry squad needs funds for conducting fire fight and bring it to a victorious conclusion. Such techniques and technologies do exist. American Soldiers can do it. We just did not provide the office with the necessary capabilities and assets.

Today we must equip the office more powerful and deadly weapons. Case in point — perspective grenade launcher XM-25. This system entered service, but grenade launchers are clearly insufficient. And they are expensive. But because of this we have many hours to skirmish with the people in the shelter the enemy instead of just saying, "Hey guys, there's some guy shooting at us from behind a concrete fence. So, shot and ready together with the fence". Such a short conversation could take place between a squad leader and a thrower with the XM-25. In addition, we are starting to put troops in light infantry battalions portable recoilless rifles "Carl Gustaf". But although this increased firepower is welcome, this weapon and its characteristics are not much greater than the ubiquitous RPG-7. Don't get me wrong, it's better than nothing and in conjunction with a carbine, submachine gun, machine gun, 40-mm grenade and XM-25 "Carl Gustav" provides quite decent firepower.

In addition to the firepower we need to make your office smarter, increasing their situational awareness. Combat advantage and networking — it gives the Nett Warrior system, which gradually comes into force in limited quantities. The squad leader uses a smartphone to exchange information, passing it up and down, and also receives new data from higher command, which increases situational awareness unit entrusted to him. Today we can provide on the battlefield mobile 4G connection. And we should provide it. We must ensure our infantry sections of information, and more importantly — obtain information from them, passing it up to the team and increasing awareness of the higher command.

Hurst writes about the use of robots and how radically they change the nature of the battle. It is possible, but in 10-20 years, not before. But every American office needs to act in battle, with the support of a set of small drones like the Black Hornet or similar apparatus, brooding over the battlefield around the branch above. Infantry should also be equipped with unmanned ground systems, especially in defence, where they can be used for early detection and reconnaissance. These systems must be connected to a network such as Nett Warrior, to information on the situation, it was possible to transfer air force, fire support groups, and each fighter branch.

To take full advantage of situational awareness due to information transferred from the front edge, we need to connect to the military network our intelligence and firepower. You need to make it so that every squad leader was getting more rapid access to fire tools, not only to the artillery and systems of rocket fire, but also to the combined fire of different means. System type Mafia already provide a user friendly capability (I'm not saying you need to buy it — but something similar is quite possible to acquire, and immediately). We need to overcome the barriers to the application of firepower of the air force, the office of the land forces received the same operational air support, and the Department of the marine corps.

We all know that the American infantry squad is not acting alone. We have to give him additional opportunities, making the office an incredibly powerful. Those offices that are in armored Stryker vehicles, will benefit from a program to increase the firepower of these machines, because the machine-gun system Browning during the First world war will be replaced there on the cannon caliber 30 mm. Today, the Browning machine gun is a great weapon, but it is Stryker on the battlefield acts on an equal footing with other military vehicles. Gunner tries to get into vehicles or an enemy soldier at a distance of just one mile away. In such a situation it is reasonable to use the weapon with ammunition that explode. Exploding ammunition causes more damage at a greater distance than a monolithic bullet, which was known to Napoleon. We must use and extend the knowledge of the "little General" about "things that explode", giving our infantry the same benefits. Need to get all our units and parts used a range of weapons, from machine guns to cannons to suppress and destroy the enemy, ensuring the mobility of our branches in the vicinity of enemy infantry, its combat vehicles and weapons.

Today, we have to implement the Hirst views on the separation of the future. To do this, the infantry needed firepower to bring the fight to a victorious conclusion, which is already created and waiting for us to take a decision about their purchase. We need a weapon that will defeat the enemy, armed with AK-47 and RPG, for example, the XM-25 and Stryker with a 30-millimeter cannon. We need fire support on the front edge with a tip at the network portable devices that need networking of all units to increase situational awareness and to ensure quick decision making.

American infantry squad — based army and its decisive force. In its category it is the best in the world. But this is not enough. We don't have half a day to conduct a fire fight with a primitive enemy. We need offices that crush the enemy and realize the benefits that can only provide us training and military equipment. We don't want our office was stuck in a long battle. We need to they quickly finished their firefight. Quickly or immediately. This is the American branch for the fire fight. And we can make them today.

Patrick Donahue (Patrick Donahue)

Patrick Donahue came to serve in the army in 1989 from Villanova University. He has a master's degree in strategic studies, he worked as a researcher at the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of public administration, focusing on issues of national security. Contained in the article the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the US army, Department of defense and us government.


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