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About CaptLuke

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  1. There are two approaches. One is to land right on top of the objective, which works great if it's undefended but, if it is defended, then you need surprise during the duration of your troop build up. The most successful airborne coup de main attacks were gliders (Eben Emael being the most famous but the Corinth Canal and Pegasus Bridge were others). The glider troops landed concentrated and attacked immediately and successfully. The other is to land away from the objective, in an undefended area, so that you have time to assemble your forces away from enemy fire and then attack
  2. I agree. I also think you can get an acceptable vehicle using heavy truck components (military or, even better, civilian); then you get your costs down and start to restore the drivetrain simplicity that is lost with more elaborate wheeled arrangements. I'm thinking the VBTP-MR Guarani may be the contemporary example but I am still quite fond of the Ratel approach (the approach, I'm not saying build Ratels today). IIRC the South Africans thought that the spaced 6x6 arrangement (Ratel, RG-35) gave superior performance on long road marches than the "evenly spaced wheels" approach (VAB
  3. So it's sound . . . no wait it's a laser . . . no wait it's microwaves . . . and even though sound detection, laser detection, and microwave detection are well established technologies there's no evidence of anything being used at all . . . and that thing in Syria we told you was a directed energy attack from THE RUSSIANS turned out to be food poisoning . . . and, as Stuart has pointed out, there is no motive whatsoever for these psuedo-random, global attacks. . . . but the same intelligence community that has been lying its ass off about RUSSIA RUSSIA RUSSIA for five years is really, kinda,
  4. Pro's and Con's of doing this for what purpose? Because you're a pariah state and no one is supposed to sell to you? Well, you can usually ally with 1-2 other pariah states and make some under the table deals (with nation states or with smugglers), so you'll need a lot of self-sufficiency but not 100%. This is perhaps the most compelling case and if you look at the size and capability of the arms industry that South Africa developed you see they went a long way, but don't think even they ever got to 100% for an AFV. Because you want to export without restriction? You may need to b
  5. What Bojan and Zuk said plus I'll add my 2 cents: Spike NLOS (and similar systems) excel against small, individual, hardened, often mobile, targets. These things have never been good targets for unobserved artillery fire and an MRL volley is often overkill. In this sense, small missiles are a new capability that complement, rather than replace "dumb" artillery fires. There is admittedly a grey area where small missiles and guided artillery/rocket rounds overlap in capability, but I would argue that the target set of things like Spike NLOS put that type of missile in competition wi
  6. The Japanese are in a little more constricted space than the Commandos were since they have two layers of transport: they are moving APCs in a C-2. Your approach is reasonable, but there is a tradeoff to having one squad split across two APC instead of one APC = one squad.
  7. My understanding is that flamethrowers, and early replacement systems, like Flash, used fire as an alternative way of attacking structures (bunkers, buildings); the purpose wasn't to set things on fire (which is the purpose of, for instance, an incendiary HMG or autocannon round). Saab already has two rounds for the Carl G that fulfill the anti-structure role. Saab's 84 mm ASM 509 round sounds like a thermobaric approach, although details are scarce. The official description is: "The enhanced explosive of ASM 509 neutralizes enemy troops in buildings and structures through high-pressure
  8. For the infantry platoons it might also be that an entire two section platoon now fits in one C-2 sortie. The two section platoon both economizes on sorties and helps with unit integrity during transport. IIRC the UK Commando organization was influenced by the same idea: the sizing was such that a section (platoon) had two squads and filled one Landing Craft Assault (LCA). The Japanese organization has the same 5 maneuver companies, each of two platoons, each of two squads organization that the 1945 UK Commando did.
  9. The 5/2/2 arrangement is unusual and I agree with your point. The only other organization I can think of that used it is a UK Commando. The 1945 Commando TO&E had 5 Troops (companies), each with two sections (platoons), each with two squads.
  10. Another way to look at this is that they've reinvented the Pentomic Battlegroup. 5 maneuver companies The original PENTANA concept emphasized air portability and low manning levels (8600 for a division) The HHC design is very similar to the original Pentomic design as is the separate heavy mortar battery at battlegroup/regiment level The idea is for the battlegroup/regiment to operate "dispersed" from other units, more or less on its own Pentomic was not exactly a success story, so I'm certainly not discounting your criticisms, but it's interesting that some si
  11. There are good arguments that persisting with the Bradley was the right way to go; I was pushing back against the "no alternative" idea. I have actually become much more of a fan of the M2 than I was at the time it was coming out, but there's some 20/20 hindsight involved in that opinion. As for Burton, I'm not buying into either the movie version or the dangerous, loose cannon version. Did he understand the 'big picture'? I don't know; probably not. But did he have some valid criticism about the way the US tested protection schemes? Yes. I would argue that the development arc of th
  12. The movie expands out into a critique of the procurement system, but the core of it was the real life fight over live fire testing to measure survivability. I remember that discussion as more nuanced: The Army had valid points: testing against a variety of 'over match' munitions would shred expensive test vehicles that were not designed to withstand those munitions and "random hit" testing would also destroy the test vehicles (through cumulative effects) without necessarily yielding any new information to the design teams But Burton, the USAF Colonel, had a valid point too: if
  13. The original 35mm KETF had three different versions: the original anti-aircraft/missile round which carries 152 cylindrical tungsten pellets each 5.85mm in diameter and weighing 3.3g the anti-personnel version for use in AFVs which carries 341 pellets of 4.65mm diameter weighing 1.5g each a C-RAM version for defending fixed bases against incoming rockets, mortar bombs and artillery shells (I don't have any specifics) 30mm KETF originally used the 1.5g AP pellet, but then downsized to a 1.24g pellet. For perspective, a 1.24g pellet is in the range of bullet weight
  14. I can't find it now, but believe I recall reading about Guderian protesting the Tiger I to Tiger II changeover on the grounds that the tanks per month lost to the changeover cost Germany 100s of heavy tanks when the Tiger I was still "good enough." Forczyk had some interesting comments about German tank production in Tank Warfare on the Eastern Front, 1943–1945: Red Steamroller: Guderian favored focusing on boosting Pz IV production to at least 400 per month and delaying the introduction of the Panther until it was thoroughly tested The Nibelungenwerke factory wa
  15. The AGS-17 crops up quite a bit in The Bear Went Over The Mountain: Soviet Combat Tactics In Afghanistan by Grau and Glantz, though there is no explicit discussion of whether these were vehicle mounted at factory/depot level, field expedient vehicle mounted, or just tripod mounted. Most of the book is based off of Soviet after action reports so presumably knowledge of Soviet organization and equipment was assumed. There are a lot of references to AGS-17 platoons, often dispersed to add firepower to specific units for specific tasks with 1 or 2 AGS-17 or an "AGS-17 squad" There w
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