Role of Reconnaissance in the Counterattack.
Technical Report,05 Jul 2015,26 May 2016
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS FORT LEAVENWORTH United States
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Following an enemy attack, reconnaissance forces must quickly acquire the information required to define the new operational environment. Under ideal conditions, satellite imagery and unmanned aerial systems provide adequate situational awareness. Against a committed adversary, however, modern commanders must anticipate Unmanned Aerial System UAS feeds to drop cellular reception to be inconsistent, exploited, or absent satellite communications to be lost and radio communication to be degraded. In this environment, tactical reconnaissance provides the operational commander the information required to execute the counterattack at the right time, place, and purpose. Two case studies, MG William B. Keans US 25th Infantry Division in the Korean War 1950 and MG Ariel Sharons Israeli 143rd Armored Division in the Yom Kippur War 1973, demonstrate how ground reconnaissance forces contributed to the success or failure of the counterattack in austere environments. The monograph concludes with three recommendations for future publications of FM 3-90-1, Offense and Defense and FM 3-98, Reconnaissance and Security Operations. Fighting from a position of relative disadvantage is foreign to our generation of officers and leaders. Without personal experience, leaders require doctrine and training. By understanding the risks and opportunities of the counterattack, military professionals become resilient amidst the worst conditions.