I started this series, TDG (Tactical Decision Game) Tuesdays, to get you more in the mindset of how you could potentially handle a given tactical scenario with a limited amount of resources and manpower. My goal is to get you to read these scenarios and think about what resources you have available, what sort of scenarios you might encounter, and what gaps you need to fill in your equipment/training.
I will use the basic 5-paragraph operations order format, or SMEAC, to present the scenario as follows;
Situation: Disposition of all friendly, hostile, and adjacent forces.
Mission: What we are trying to do.
Execution: How we are going to do it.
Admin & Logistics: Who/what is getting where and how.
Command & Signal: Who is in charge and how they are communicating.
TDG 6: COIN
Situation: Guerrilla Warfare Scenario. You are a PLA Lieutenant Colonel in charge of a rear area where your troops have been subject to ambushes by a local guerrilla force. You command a logistics battalion, but division has granted you additional units to help secure the region.
OPFOR Situation: Enemy guerrillas are operating in your AOR and have proven to be quite a thorn in your side over the last few weeks. They recently ambushed a supply convoy that was your responsibility to protect, destroying vital ammunition and fuel headed to the front lines in the North. Their strength is unknown, but estimated to be between 15-30. Previous attempts to pursue them have been fruitless, as they seem to vanish into the countryside once your troops try to counterattack.
BLUFOR (PLA) Situation: Your AOR is Shannon County, Missouri. Your Logistics FOB is located near the town of Eminence at the location marked on the map. You command the PLA 27th Logistics Battalion* with about 1,000 organic personnel, including FOB and convoy security detachments. In light of recent guerrilla attacks, division HQ has granted you what units could be spared to assist you in securing your AOR.
Independents Situation: You have limited proxy support in your area. Indigenous Law Enforcement agencies seem to be cooperating thus far, but you suspect that certain of them may be feeding intel to the guerrillas. You also have the support of the local ANTIFA chapter, comprised of about 50 volunteers, which our embedded trainers are doing a good job of arming, training, and indoctrinating to function as semi-autonomous pro-China militias.
Mission: To destroy or force to disband the local guerrilla band in order to stop the attacks on PLA convoys and security forces.
Execution: Up to you. Determine how you will use your available forces to accomplish the mission.
Admin & Logistics: In addition to your organic supply personnel, the following units have been assigned to your command:
1 light motorized rifle company at 70% strength, sent back from the front (30% casualties are generally considered enough to render a unit “destroyed” or at least “combat ineffective”)
A SIGINT detachment with radio direction-finding and jamming vehicles
2 additional ISR drones, capable of 50 hours continuous flight time in ideal weather, with visual and thermal cameras
A 15-man team from the “Night Tigers” special forces group, specializing in counter-terrorism operations.
Command & Signal: You retain operational command and control of all of your detachments except the “Night Tigers” SOF team, which operates autonomously. You can communicate with your units via a combination of SATCOM, HF, and VHF LOS radios, detailed comm plans will be drawn up by your communications officer as needed.
As you can probably tell, this week’s TDG is a sequel to last week’s Convoy Ambush TDG. Any time you take action against an enemy, especially successful action, expect them to react to your operations by making some sort of change. You should try to anticipate these changes by putting yourself in the enemy commander’s shoes, like I’m having you do in this scenario. You can then be prepared to adapt to the enemy’s changes quickly. This is a never-ending cycle in counterinsurgency operations (abbreviated COIN), one where the most flexible opponent is the most successful.
Feel free to post your answers and discuss.
*Fictitious unit based off OSINT about PLA and USA logistics structure.