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Subject: how would you organise an infantry company?
forvalour    4/10/2008 4:00:34 AM
How would you organise a light infantry company (not including weapons platoon) down to squad level?
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ambush       4/12/2008 8:56:56 PM

How light is light?

Consolidate Anti-tank capabilities (ie Javelins  at Battalion level) as with all maintenance and supply functions. Move  the medical support down from battalion to company

Added a UAV unit to take advantage of the increased availability of light UAVs

Communications squad handles both computer communications as well as standard radio.

Added a company S-2 to help deal with all the additional information

 The Sapper Squad gives the company organic combat engineer capability

Platoon guides and messengers function as RTOs

Co HQ-




Co GySgt

Admin Sgt

Supply Sgt

Six enlisted Clerks /Messengers


HQ Platoon

Platoon Commander (also functions as Company S-2/Com Officer)

Platoon Sergeant (also functions as Company S-2/ComSergeant)

Platoon Guide

2 Platoon Messengers

UAV Squad

1 Squad Leader, 9 enlisted (3 Teams)

Communications Squad

1 Squad Leader, 8 enlisted

Medical Squad

1 Squad Leader, 10 enlisted Corpsman


Weapons Platoon

Platoon Commander (also functions as Company Fire Support Officer running company level FDC)

Platoon Sergeant (company Fire Support NCO)

Platoon Guide

Platoon messanger

Mortar Section

3X Light mortars (60mm).

1 Squad leader , 3-4 man mortar teams

MG Squad

4X Medium Machineguns

1 Squad Leader, 4-3 man MG teams

Sapper Squad- Supports mobility and counter-mobility operations and serve as a reserve rifle Squad

Equipped with SMAWs, breaching equipment , demolition, mines and obstacle material as needed

1 Squad Leader 3-4man Sapper Teams


Rifle Platoon X3

Platoon Commander

Platoon Sergeant

Platoon Guide

Platoon messenger

Rifle Squads X2

Squad leader 3-4 man fire teams consisting of  FT leader, Grenadier, Automatic Rifleman  and Rifleman.

Weapons Squad ?Can be equipped with machineguns and or SMAWs depending on mission

Squad Leader and 13 enlisted men

Example of organization

3 machinegun teams and 2 SMAW teams









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Yimmy       4/12/2008 9:21:20 PM
Why not including the weapons platoon? 

Given the nature of current conflict (insurgency) as opposed to World War Two and Cold War (envisioned) large set-piece battles, units are fighting in smaller elements, and as such I believe fire support should move downwards so that it is organic within the company.  Most Commonwealth companies consist of three platoons and a HQ element.  I believe it makes a lot of sense on current operations for one of these platoons to be equipped as a fire support group, taking a section from each of the support companies platoons.  For instance, you could have a platoon with a section equipped with three sustained fire GPMG's, a section with a couple HMG's or GMG's, and a section with a few Javelin posts.  Being an indirect fire asset, I would place any mortar element separately in the orbat - as while the direct fire elements in the fire support group would tend to go for an over-watch position, mortars can be otherwise positioned and then directed by the manoeuvre elements.

I see the importance in having a specialist HQ company in the battalion, however I am not sure an HQ platoon is required in each company, in addition to the HQ section based around the OC.

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verong       4/12/2008 11:31:45 PM
co and rto 
1st sarg and rto
guideon barer
xo and rto
admin 3 man team
cooks 4 man team
commo team of 4
trans team of 4
armory of two men
medic team of four men
mortor team of four men with two 6mm
supply of 4 man team
line platoons x 2
lt and rto
psg and rto
anti vehicle/bunker team of four
squads line four
ssg and rto
2 man saw team 4 x 4 man teams
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longrifle       4/13/2008 10:15:47 PM
I like ambush's robust weapons platoon.  I had never considered a sapper squad at the company level but I think it makes sense.

Along a similar line of reasoning I'd add a squad of sharpshooters/DMs to the weapons platoon.  I think it's better to have them in the weapons platoon under an experienced staff sergeant for training and administration.  They could still be farmed out to the rifle platoon leaders as needed, or retained en mass by the company commander as a potent scouting, screening, and skirmishing element.

It would also be good if the squad leaders in the weapons platoon were senior staff sergeants who were cross trained - and capable of advising a rifle platoon leader - on all the weapons platoon weapons and capabilities.  Then they could lead a task organized weapons squad according to whatever a rifle platoon leader most needed for a particular mission.


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stinger       4/14/2008 12:05:04 AM
1. I would add an extra man to each  team and add an assistant squad leader,
2  I would replace 1 saw from a fire team with a MK-48 and replace all saw s with MK-46  
3.  I would Assign a M- 240 B to each squad
This is for a U.S.  Army Squad
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longrifle       4/14/2008 5:34:55 PM
Food for thought:

If you are going to subdivide your squad into fire teams the history of small unit combat supports the idea that you need to start with a big squad of 12-13 men for the structure to last very long under sustained combat.  Smaller eight to ten man have proven less than ideal for the fire team structure, although thanks to SLA Marshall everyone seems bound and determined to continue trying to make the concept work.

There's a lot to be said for the big, robust USMC style squad if you can get it.  Actually, I think it started out as a Chinese style squad and was adopted by Evans Carlson.  Later, the entire USMC adopted the organization and another man was added to each fire team to bring the total up to 13 for increased sustainability in the bloody Pacific amphibious assaults.  In any case, the fire team based squad has worked out well for the USMC.

Not always so for the smaller two fire team Army squad envisioned by SLA Marshall.  The fire team structure breaks down in sustained combat in smaller squads.  Few Army Vietnam vets can remember using fire teams or squad fire and maneuver.  It was normally squad fire or maneuver.  The entire "squad" was usually six or seven men in the field, even though 11 men were authorized.  The squad just wasn't big enough to split itself into fire and maneuver elements.  Loose one man, or at the most two, out of the current nine man squad and you can forget about maintaining a real fire team structure.  You will, of course, bound two or three men ahead for short distances but that's hardly maneuver.  Real enveloping attacks will have to start at platoon level.

It's worth remembering that the Germans had a lot of tactical success with a nine man squad.....a squad that was not fire team based.

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stinger       4/21/2008 5:54:26 PM
have the ranger battalion been issued the MK-16 and 17 yet??
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