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Old 08-14-2016, 11:14 PM   #31
sjard
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
Pretty much. In WW I, the US had divisions with two brigades of two regiments each (a total of four regiments, so "square"). In WW II, they changed that to drop the brigades and have three regiments of three companies ("triangular") directly reporting to division HQ.
I think you missed a step there. Regiments of (on paper) 3-5 Battalions, not companies.

To use a somewhat popular TV example, Band of Brothers, the show centers mostly on E Company, 2nd Battalion, 506 Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division.

The 506 had nine companies, and, if I'm remembering correctly, were divided in to 2 Battalions of 4 companies each, with the 9th being Battalion HQ.
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:00 PM   #32
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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I think you missed a step there. Regiments of (on paper) 3-5 Battalions, not companies.
That's right. Too many unit size names running through my head, probably distracted by the pentomic layout that did do away with battalions. I'll fix the original.

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Old 08-17-2016, 11:20 PM   #33
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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I think you missed a step there. Regiments of (on paper) 3-5 Battalions, not companies.

To use a somewhat popular TV example, Band of Brothers, the show centers mostly on E Company, 2nd Battalion, 506 Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division.

The 506 had nine companies, and, if I'm remembering correctly, were divided in to 2 Battalions of 4 companies each, with the 9th being Battalion HQ.
WWII rifle regiments (except in the early square divisions) had three battalions with three rifle companies and one weapons company each. Parachute and glider units had three battalions of three companies, with the mortars and MMGs attached directly to the battalion HQ instead of in a separate weapons company.

Armored divisions were organized differently. They consisted of three regiments (two armor, one infantry) and later six independent battalions (three each armor and infantry) which could be assigned to one of two combat commands--basically empty brigades--as needed.
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Old 08-18-2016, 12:44 PM   #34
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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Another article I found, transcribing a presentation by Major General James Delk (40th Infantry Division commander, I believe), says "Transportation for a heavy division relies mostly on tracks. We couldn't use them; we didn't want to drive into Los Angeles with tanks and armored personnel carriers. We had to contract for buses, which meant that civilians had to help us out a lot." From that, it seems that there was a deliberate decision to leave the armor behind in this case. They did have unarmored HumVees, including some with mounted grenade launchers. (These apparently impressed the rioters, who mistakenly thought they were armored -- no one ever took a shot at one -- and also didn't know that they didn't have ammunition issued for the grenade launcher.)
This is interesting. Given a situation like the one described in the article you quote, what are the odds they were short on things like gas masks and night vision optics? Even if they had some on hand, only having enough for a fraction of your soldiers could have been crippling in the wrong situation.
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Old 08-18-2016, 04:42 PM   #35
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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This is interesting. Given a situation like the one described in the article you quote, what are the odds they were short on things like gas masks and night vision optics?
Pretty much unconnected. The reason you would use trucks instead of tracks is because tracks tear the hell out of pavement and no-one wants to deal with resurfacing that many streets.
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Old 08-18-2016, 06:32 PM   #36
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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Pretty much unconnected. The reason you would use trucks instead of tracks is because tracks tear the hell out of pavement and no-one wants to deal with resurfacing that many streets.
Lack of ammo for grenade launchers suggests some things they didn't bring because they didn't expect to need them. Also I've heard stories of National Guard units being short night vision goggles. Also also, I don't think gas masks are standard for modern military. That's because chemical weapons, even tear gas, are strongly taboo in modern military conflicts. Ergo you don't bother unless you have specific reason to fear chemical weapons may be used (as in the invasion of Iraq). Which may (somewhat counterintuitively) mean local law enforcement will sometimes be better prepared for chemical warfare than the Nat. Guard.

If you wanted the thing to be a bit of a snafu, I think you could justify that within 24 hours of the crisis becoming publicly obvious, there might be 10k national guardsmen on the scene, in addition to local law enforcement, but only 30% of LEOs and few guardsmen would have gas masks, and only 70% of guardsmen and a few LEOs (mostly SWAT) would have night vision. So a better-prepared enemy attacking with chemical weapons at night could gain a large advantage.
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Old 08-18-2016, 06:44 PM   #37
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Given a situation like the one described in the article you quote, what are the odds they were short on things like gas masks and night vision optics?
I fixed the link in the previous post so you can actually read the PDF now. And linked it here for convenience. Also fixed the link to Gen. Delk's presentation, which was linked to Wenger's article.

Col. Wenger has a whole "Lessons Learned" section where he goes through his own complaints. Gas masks and night vision gear were not among them.

The lack that jumped out at me the most, reinforcing the fact that this was 1992, was a lack of maps. Apparently there weren't a lot of detailed military maps of US cities, and so they had to make do with "automobile club maps and maps by a local cartographer". These days, I'd expect someone to pull out their smartphone and use Google Maps. Though maybe the Guard leaves behind such personal gear when on a mission, either by regulation or just so as not to risk losing it. I recall widespread availability of GPS devices at low levels being cited as an advantage in the 2003 Iraq war, but this was a decade earlier.

Another equipment complaint was that the military radios in the FM band were "totally inadequate" in the urban terrain. They had a lot of trouble communicating until they got police radios in the AM band. (The other "what decade" moment in this paragraph was the suggestion to supply cell phones and pagers for such operations. Because who has their own cell phone unless they're Gordon Gekko?)

The other main complaint about equipment was the batons, fire shields, and flak vests being old (~20 years), and not as effective as the modern stuff.
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Old 08-18-2016, 07:37 PM   #38
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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The lack that jumped out at me the most, reinforcing the fact that this was 1992, was a lack of maps. Apparently there weren't a lot of detailed military maps of US cities, and so they had to make do with "automobile club maps and maps by a local cartographer". These days, I'd expect someone to pull out their smartphone and use Google Maps. Though maybe the Guard leaves behind such personal gear when on a mission, either by regulation or just so as not to risk losing it. I recall widespread availability of GPS devices at low levels being cited as an advantage in the 2003 Iraq war, but this was a decade earlier.
Google Maps has the benefit that it is zoomable, actively updated, and shows you your current position, but it still doesn't show a lot of terrain details that the military would need to know.
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Old 08-19-2016, 08:23 AM   #39
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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If you wanted the thing to be a bit of a snafu, I think you could justify that within 24 hours of the crisis becoming publicly obvious, there might be 10k national guardsmen on the scene, in addition to local law enforcement, but only 30% of LEOs and few guardsmen would have gas masks, and only 70% of guardsmen and a few LEOs (mostly SWAT) would have night vision. So a better-prepared enemy attacking with chemical weapons at night could gain a large advantage.
If you want the thing to e a bit of a snafu call the National Guard in for what's obviously a regular military situation. The Guard is the _last_ line of military readiness. It's just called in to non-military situations because the US has a historical thing about a standing army being used against its' own citizens.

But Aliens? No, nobody is going to depend on the Guard to stop an alien invasion. The Guard isn't going to be any more relevant to an alien invasion than whether or not it had NV goggles in 1992.
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Old 08-19-2016, 11:46 AM   #40
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Default Re: Ability of the US Gov (state and federal) to deal with invasion by teleportation

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I fixed the link in the previous post so you can actually read the PDF now. And linked it here for convenience. Also fixed the link to Gen. Delk's presentation, which was linked to Wenger's article.

Col. Wenger has a whole "Lessons Learned" section where he goes through his own complaints. Gas masks and night vision gear were not among them.
Actually they are—p. 3, col. 2, 1st para.

(Just based on a quick skim—will read full article later.)
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