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Old 07-24-2011, 07:25 AM
James Langham James Langham is offline
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Default 29th Infantry Division

As there is nothing in canon on the 29th Infantry Division, I decided to send it to Korea (there was a suggestion I believe by Chico that it was deployed to the Horn of Africa but this would have caused problems with my plans for the 173rd Airborne).

Here is my suggestion for how it was deployed.
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Old 07-24-2011, 07:46 AM
dragoon500ly dragoon500ly is offline
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Good work! Always look forward to your articles.

But I got to flame you on this one James, US Army Korea used the M-60A3 tank during the 1980s, they were one of the last units to convert over to the IPM-1 right around 1989-90 time frame.

When I was serving my last hitch as an instructor at Ft Knox, there was a
M-60A3 company (the only one on base) that was training National Guardsmen and Korean-bound tankers.

Most active duty M-60A1s had been converted/replaced to the A3 configuation (in Germany at least) right around 1982-83. A lot of the tank commanders were less than impressed with the IPM-1 TC position, the powered coupla has a major PITA and the position of the TCs sight came in for a lot of criticism.

On the M-60A3, there is a long tube extension that brings the gunner's night sight picture to roughly knee level, the TC could angle his eyepiece up and be able to keep his head out of the hatch to keep an eye on things and then slightly back and down to see what his gunner was looking at. On the Abrams you had to drop down completely and look through your extension sight...you had the choice of leaving the hatch open and unoccupied or of closing the hatch, and then reopening the hatch with every movement. Not a problem in peacetime, but a great way to encourage an infantryman with a satchel charge during war.
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Old 07-24-2011, 11:37 AM
James Langham James Langham is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dragoon500ly View Post
Good work! Always look forward to your articles.

But I got to flame you on this one James, US Army Korea used the M-60A3 tank during the 1980s, they were one of the last units to convert over to the IPM-1 right around 1989-90 time frame.

When I was serving my last hitch as an instructor at Ft Knox, there was a
M-60A3 company (the only one on base) that was training National Guardsmen and Korean-bound tankers.

Most active duty M-60A1s had been converted/replaced to the A3 configuation (in Germany at least) right around 1982-83. A lot of the tank commanders were less than impressed with the IPM-1 TC position, the powered coupla has a major PITA and the position of the TCs sight came in for a lot of criticism.

On the M-60A3, there is a long tube extension that brings the gunner's night sight picture to roughly knee level, the TC could angle his eyepiece up and be able to keep his head out of the hatch to keep an eye on things and then slightly back and down to see what his gunner was looking at. On the Abrams you had to drop down completely and look through your extension sight...you had the choice of leaving the hatch open and unoccupied or of closing the hatch, and then reopening the hatch with every movement. Not a problem in peacetime, but a great way to encourage an infantryman with a satchel charge during war.
So much for text books! Ok will find a way to fix - I think I can see a fairly obvious one in that it is easier to fly the troops and use the M48s there than ship the tanks from the States.

(and there was me thinking the use of the 29th in Korea instead of their planned area would get me criticized...)

Still I would rather friends here spot the faults than keep them in.
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Old 07-24-2011, 11:45 AM
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I had wondered if anyone else was using the 29th ID too. My version is that the 29th was formed up from angry displaced Americans that had either evacuated ahead of advancing Soviet and Mexican forces or escaped from the occupied areas south of I-40 in the CONUS. I placed them with 110th Corps, and had them retaking Fort Sill, Oklahoma as one of their last major actions.

For my additional units, I tried to keep things short and sweet as the original US and Soviet Combat Vehicle Handbooks did;

"29th Infantry Division (Mech), Ft Sill Ok, 2600 troops, 10 Stingray II, 6 M-60-2000, 8 M4A4E8 Sherman
The 29th was activated by popular demand as the volunteers coming out of the occupied territories and from behind the friendly lines swelled. They were armed up with a recently acquired stock of arms, equipment and vehicles that had just been recaptured from the Mexican Army. They went fully active not long after the victory of the 256th, and moved forward in their wake, retaking Ft Sill and keeping the pressure on the Mexicans. They also faced off with forward elements of Division Cuba of the Soviet Army, and crushed a leading motor rifle battalion in a surprise night action."

(The 256th is a Mechanized Infantry Brigade formed up around wounded troops returning to duty and using the stay behind personnel and colors of a Louisiana National Guard Bde that had originally been detailed to the 5th Infantry Division)
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by kota1342000 View Post
I had wondered if anyone else was using the 29th ID too. My version is that the 29th was formed up from angry displaced Americans that had either evacuated ahead of advancing Soviet and Mexican forces or escaped from the occupied areas south of I-40 in the CONUS. I placed them with 110th Corps, and had them retaking Fort Sill, Oklahoma as one of their last major actions.

For my additional units, I tried to keep things short and sweet as the original US and Soviet Combat Vehicle Handbooks did;

"29th Infantry Division (Mech), Ft Sill Ok, 2600 troops, 10 Stingray II, 6 M-60-2000, 8 M4A4E8 Sherman
The 29th was activated by popular demand as the volunteers coming out of the occupied territories and from behind the friendly lines swelled. They were armed up with a recently acquired stock of arms, equipment and vehicles that had just been recaptured from the Mexican Army. They went fully active not long after the victory of the 256th, and moved forward in their wake, retaking Ft Sill and keeping the pressure on the Mexicans. They also faced off with forward elements of Division Cuba of the Soviet Army, and crushed a leading motor rifle battalion in a surprise night action."

(The 256th is a Mechanized Infantry Brigade formed up around wounded troops returning to duty and using the stay behind personnel and colors of a Louisiana National Guard Bde that had originally been detailed to the 5th Infantry Division)
Doesn't even need to contradict mine as that sounds like the 29th reforming in the US after being destroyed.
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Old 07-24-2011, 12:29 PM
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Good point! Maybe I dont put enough thought into connections between all of the good stuff that can always be found here
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Old 07-24-2011, 04:55 PM
dragoon500ly dragoon500ly is offline
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Believe me James, tracking down TO&Es and when a certain piece of equipment reached the troops is enough to drive one gray-headed (or watching reruns of Charmed!).

My own take on the 29th was it going to the Persian Gulf and getting creamed in the fighting following Operation Pegasus II, it was then pulling rear area security and LOC security duties.
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Old 07-24-2011, 06:23 PM
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The 29th was formed as a Light division when it was reformed in the 1980s and as of 1989, it was the only Light division on the National Guard. So shouldn't any armor battalion have been equipped with the M8/LAV75/whatever? Or is the M48/M60 a plus up to the division to give it some more firepower/staying power?

I'm enjoying your work, so please keep them coming.
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Old 07-24-2011, 06:37 PM
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Perhaps the newer vehicles were allocated to the "professional" military units first and only the older vehicles were available?
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Old 07-24-2011, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Legbreaker View Post
Perhaps the newer vehicles were allocated to the "professional" military units first and only the older vehicles were available?
That's an explanation I can easily buy.

I guess my issue/question comes from the fact as a Light division, why did it have an M60 battalion in the first place?
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Old 07-24-2011, 10:51 PM
HorseSoldier HorseSoldier is offline
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The division isn't really missing from the T2K order of battle. It's component units are just under different flags, so adding it to the order of battle is double-dipping units in the 26th and 46th IDs in the T2K order of battle.

Unless the colors for 29th are posited as being attached to a unit mobilized after the war begins, as was suggested up thread, then it seems to me that it can only exist at the expense of 26th or 46th IDs in the order of battle, and would most likely just take their place in Korea or California. Excess brigades from whichever of those units gets the axe could be posited as filling in for the 6th and 10th ID(L) round out brigades and the brigade for the Iceland Defense Force, all of which are also missing from the order of battle (or, more precisely, slated in other units as well -- 42nd and 43rd ID).
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:08 AM
dragoon500ly dragoon500ly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James1978 View Post
The 29th was formed as a Light division when it was reformed in the 1980s and as of 1989, it was the only Light division on the National Guard. So shouldn't any armor battalion have been equipped with the M8/LAV75/whatever? Or is the M48/M60 a plus up to the division to give it some more firepower/staying power?

I'm enjoying your work, so please keep them coming.
To be accurate a Light Infantry Division in the '80s would not have any armor assigned at all. Their only antitank systems would be the Dragons of the line companies, the Hummer/TOWs of the nine Combat Support Companies and the attack helicopters in their air cav sqn and attack helicopter battalion.

The concept of a LID at the time, was to be very mobile in a strategic sense, everything it had could be airlifted via C-5/C-141. The proud boost was on the ground anywhere in the world in 72 hours. And to be fair, they could it.

It was intended for the LID to be used only in circumstances when a heavy division could not be employed, i.e. urban/jungle/mountain warfare. They would be reinforced, if necessary, by various NG infantry divisions. And initial plans were to form only 2 and perhaps 3 LIDs in addition to the 82nd/101st or 5 lights out of 17 divisions.

So why did the AUS form the 6th, 7th, 10th and 25th LIDs, not to mention the 9th Motorized? Congress can be thanked for that. It was cheaper to field a light fighter than it was to field heavy troops. They didn't require the support structure as well. A real cheap way to field large numbers of soldiers and free up money for the various social programs......

This ignored the fact that LIDs, while strategically far more mobile than the heavies, have the tactical mobility of a World War One doughboy, you can only march so far and so fast on foot. And in every single exercise in which the lights went up against heavies in which the lights did not have a terrain advantage....the lights had their arses handed to them. And even some of the exercises where the lights had the terrain advantage, it was umpire decisions that gave them the victory (COMEON! A Dragon will not knock out a M-1 at 2,500 meters!!!!).

It was at this point that the great LAV-75/RDF Light Tank/M-8 AGS started. The intent was to introduce a good light tank/mobile gun system and equip each LID with 1-2 battalions to give them more firepower. With the end of these programs, that gave the push to go Stryker. And so the Light Fighter experiment ended.
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Old 07-25-2011, 12:41 PM
HorseSoldier HorseSoldier is offline
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And, to be fair, in the 80s you had a lot of people prepping to refight Vietnam in Central America on the one hand, and the Reagan administration pushing for specific end state goals in the force structure. Back in those days, the targets were X number of divisions and Y number of ships in the navy, etc.
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Old 07-30-2011, 12:51 PM
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Default Revised version

Rewritten version incorporating a lot of Kota's history. As ever comments welcome.
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Old 07-30-2011, 02:34 PM
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This thread has given me another couple of quotes
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:10 PM
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I might suggest the substitution of the M4A3E8 for the listed M4A4E8. The M4A4 was the version powered by the Chrysler Multibank engine...essentially 5 Chrysler car V-8's harnessed together. This was done due to the shortage of engines for the Sherman tank. Most were "given" to our Allies under Lend-Lease. There is one intrepid soul in the UK that has restored one to working order.

They were a maintenance nightmare, for obvious reasons.

I am unaware of the M4A4 used to make an E8 model, although the British did use them to make Firefly Shermans, from what I've seen.

The M4A3 series were powered by the same Ford V-8 used in the M-26 Pershing.

A suggestion might be to use M-46 or M-47 Patton tanks...I see a lot of them at local (Chicago, IL) area veterans halls (VFW, etc) that have armor on display. I believe the 90mm on the M-46/M-47 is ballistically similar to the 90mm in the earlier versions of the M-48, simplifying the supply chain. To be honest, I cannot envision a scenario where 76mm ammo for a M4A3E8 would still exist in the US and not be past the rated shelf life.

Also demilitarized M26/46/47 tanks could (especially a company or two, maybe a battalion) be restored to working order with a variety of parts from the M48A3 and M48A5 (power plant, armament/fire control/commo, etc).

Another thought might be to include some "Duster" 40mm AA vehicles as NG leftovers. I know those appear in some of the Challenge Magazine material.

Just a thought-
Dave
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:45 PM
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ARRG! Thank you Dave, had not looked closely at what I had typed before....my M4A4E8 was off by one LOL
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Old 07-30-2011, 08:56 PM
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Actually, the V, or A4 Sherman didn't have a bank of V-8's.

The Chrysler A57 Multibank was made from 5 L Head Inline 6's. It did require more maintenance, but it was an amazing engine. It was a mix of Chrysler and Dodge parts, and built around a common crankcase, and pumped out 470HP.

My Grandfather preferred the V over the other models once he got into his first one. In his view they was a good bit more powerful and agile, and being longer - even if only slightly longer - than a stock Sherman, made for a better firing platform - especially once he got into a Sherman V Firefly.
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Old 07-30-2011, 09:45 PM
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My apologies on the confusion...that's what I get for trying to post while the kids are fighting in the next room. If memory serves, Chrysler Corporattion was big on inline engines until the early hemi V-8 engines of the 50's. I would imagine you Grandfather was originally issued a M4A1 or M4A2 and the M4A4, when running well, would probably be significantly more powerful in real world use than the radial or twin diesels.

He was a lucky man to get the Firefly!

Thanks-
Dave
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Old 08-02-2011, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HorseSoldier View Post
The division isn't really missing from the T2K order of battle. It's component units are just under different flags, so adding it to the order of battle is double-dipping units in the 26th and 46th IDs in the T2K order of battle.
Absolutely true Horse, and Im terrible about double dipping for additional order of battle stuff. But I try to make up for it by either explaining what had happened to the original parent units of the component brigades, or building new formations out of the pool of inactive colors.
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Old 08-02-2011, 09:32 PM
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One thing I do every so often when I come up with the "Twilight 2000 Notes" part of my descriptions on my site is incorporate a little story about how some unit got some equipment it shouldn't have had, or just say that a certain vehicle "somehow" ended up at a certain unit (I assign a lot of unusual vehicles to the TX ARNG's 49th AD that way -- as much as I love the Army, I had a good time in the Guard and learned a lot of valuable stuff from those old veterans that came in handy the whole time I was in the Army). Or the little story, I think it's under the SAR-80 in Singaporean Assault Rifles, about the mysterious raid on Soviet submarine pens at Cam Ranh Bay early in the war. Sometimes, you can just through some unusual equipment, weapons, or vehicles at a unit, and when necessary, figure out later where they came from. Too much winging is bad, but a little bit of winging it doesn't really hurt, and can be used to throw a little mystery at the players.
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Old 04-29-2012, 04:20 AM
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Default Expanded article

As ever nitpicks and comments welcome.

I haven't forgotten my more recent articles and I'm still working on them but I periodically revisit my older articles and update them - this is one of them. Enjoy!
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Old 04-29-2012, 07:10 PM
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Not for nothing...but if you are really looking to get into the weeds with this, you can find the MTOEs for almost anything from the Army's past through the Army Heritage Center in Carlisle PA. If you go yourself....Lt. Col. Andresen (ret.) might come out just to see what oddball was trying to read an MTOE. If not...you can usually order documents.
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Old 11-01-2012, 01:20 PM
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If you are really looking to resurrect US units (since Horse Solider is right and the 29th is already in the game, its just distributed among other units) how about the 198th Brigade or the 11th Brigade from the 99th Division, along with the division itself?
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Old 11-09-2012, 07:47 AM
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I've always been bothered by the way the writers (GDWs) simply stated that for example, these three armored brigades will form this completely new division.

When you look over the TO&Es and the ROAD and Air-Land battle concepts, the independent armored and mechanized brigades had a mission. They were assigned directly to the various corps to be used as reserves, to reinforce a division for a specific operation, to be used as covering forces or to protect flanks/rear areas. There never was any intention or even a need to group them into divisions, after all, why wait until a war is underway before you try to throw together a division, not to mention its support structure.

To be sure, the US, in World War II did exactly that, expanding from a pre war base of 174,000 men (in 11 divisions) and, in five years, building up to a strength of 8,300,000 (in 91 divisions). It was, and still is an impressive achievement. But that very build-up cuased tremendous problems. Training at all levels was so short as to be, at best poor, and at worst laughable. Leaders couldn't lead and soldiers, couldn't soldier. It took over three years of intense effort, stupid defeats and lots and lots (did I mention lots?) of trail and error to produce the military machine that played such a critical part in winning the war.

The lessons learned from World War Two is that it takes time to create a division and train its personnel to work together, effectively. It was easy for Washington to say that they were creating four new divisions, but that process took some four years to complete, before the Light Infantry Divisions were declared to be "combat ready". So to say that the Army would have dumped its prewar doctrine in order to create an "ersatz" division(s) and then throw that the division straight into combat...in real life, I doubt that the Pentegon would have wasted the time.
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:13 AM
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I agree with you there as to raising new divisions - I have a unit in my East Africa story that is a battalion from a division they were trying to raise but in the end they only managed to put together a single regiment in the time they had and only two battalions of it managed to make it to Africa.

Never agreed with the training division's as presented by GDW - for one they would have done something to get them some armor for sure. Even if all it was were old Sheridans and M113 APC's or the M8 AGS. Sending in pure foot infantry, many of them half trained, without some kind of armor support is basically throwing them away.

And why even form new divisions when their current divisions are heavily depleted? If you have divisions that are now basically brigades or regiments then send the 5000 guys from a training division to a combat division where they could actually have some veterans to show them how to survive.

So lets form new divisions instead of bringing your combat formations back up to strength? Especially considering the last guy who did that was Hitler - and look how good that worked out for him. In many ways the game has American military leaders acting very stupidly - always thought those who wrote the game had a grudge against the US military and it shows in many ways, this being one of them.
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Old 11-10-2012, 02:41 AM
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Quote:
I've always been bothered by the way the writers (GDWs) simply stated that for example, these three armored brigades will form this completely new division.
Agreed. I think they did that primarily to not exceed a targeted length in the USAVG as they were writing it -- individual histories for all the NG and the two USAR* separate brigades would have probably doubled the unit histories section in that book.

Rather than being brigaded into new divisions at the beginning of the war, without a pre-existing divisional structure, support units, etc., I would guess that many of them, beginning in late 97 and early 98, would have gone from being Corps or higher assets to being permanently attached to depleted divisions to bring them back up to strength.

* There were three USAR combat brigades in the 80s, but one of them was the roundout for 6th ID(L).
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Old 11-10-2012, 05:36 AM
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Agreed. I think they did that primarily to not exceed a targeted length in the USAVG as they were writing it -- individual histories for all the NG and the two USAR* separate brigades would have probably doubled the unit histories section in that book.

Rather than being brigaded into new divisions at the beginning of the war, without a pre-existing divisional structure, support units, etc., I would guess that many of them, beginning in late 97 and early 98, would have gone from being Corps or higher assets to being permanently attached to depleted divisions to bring them back up to strength.

* There were three USAR combat brigades in the 80s, but one of them was the roundout for 6th ID(L).
And according to the pre-war doctrine, that would also be a possible use for the seperate brigades.
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Old 11-10-2012, 05:39 AM
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Never agreed with the training division's as presented by GDW - for one they would have done something to get them some armor for sure. Even if all it was were old Sheridans and M113 APC's or the M8 AGS. Sending in pure foot infantry, many of them half trained, without some kind of armor support is basically throwing them away.
GDWs approach also overlooked that the training divisions were exactly that, cadres to replace the existing instructors at the service schools with the mission of training draftees in the event of a war. So, taking a training division and converting it into a LID is simply gutting your training establishment, which would lead to problems with training the next batch of recruits. It was certainly not a well researched factoid.
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by dragoon500ly View Post
GDWs approach also overlooked that the training divisions were exactly that, cadres to replace the existing instructors at the service schools with the mission of training draftees in the event of a war. So, taking a training division and converting it into a LID is simply gutting your training establishment, which would lead to problems with training the next batch of recruits. It was certainly not a well researched factoid.
Not so fast. First, look at the numbers. You've got 12 training divisions that were doing nothing but inital entry training (basic). Thats a lot of NCOs, and they were keeping the officer structure for it too. There were quite a few qualified captains and colonels that were doing all the administrative work and planning the logistics there. If you had 12 divisions, all active, all doing nothing but cranking out basic training recruits, you'd see a lot of opened reserve posts (which happened in the war on terror) like shelby, dix, attabury, so on. There are a lot more recruits coming then there are divisions to put them in.

Next, you have the historical context. During WWII, you have had systems where at the completion of basic, the trainees go off to war with the drill sergeants as their NCOs. That how the Marine Corps built up the 4th, 5th, 6th divisions. Even John Basilone declined to become an instructor, but still ended up training the soldiers he brought to Iwo Jima. The army did a similar tactic training for Vietnam. When the army needed to expand, the 4th took its soldiers before the even went to basic, and trained them right off with their own NCOs. Its important to note that the drill sergeants in these units come from different units then the instructors that teach the courses.

You've got to look at the strategic situation. There are school house units turning out basic trainees. Even every state from the National Guard has a "state military acadmey" or "regional training institute" that has instructors. What the army needs is more force structure. There just isn't enough manuver units without them. They are going to use that structure already in place to expand and put all those first sergeants, company commanders, majors and colonels to work.

Finally, you have the emergency situation with the invasion by mexico and soviet forces in washington state. Even the "school brigade" and the "cadet brigade" are formed. They are taking people right out of basic and sending them to war. Remove the LIDs and there is nothing to stop the invasions with.

As a side note to what started this thread, if the cold war had not ended and gone into our "alternate" T2K world, then the force structure would not have changed. I was a memember of the 26th ID in 1993 when it was closed, along with the 50th AD, and the units merged with the 42nd ID and the newly stood up 29th ID. If the cold war had not ended, the 50th AD and the 26th ID would not have been closed. The 46th ID that is stood up by the GDW staff is made up of historically 29th ID units.

The 46th Infantry division was only active a few years between wars in the 50s, and its units historically belonged to the 32nd ID out of Michigan. The army has a thing for history and would have stood up the 29th division from Virgina/Maryland for their own troops. The most simple way to correct this issue is to address the 46th ID as the 29th ID.
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