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Old 06-30-2011, 03:59 PM
James Langham James Langham is offline
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Default US Marauder Companies

Another short essay, feel free to comment.

US Army Marauder Companies

In early 1997 SACEUR authorised the creation of divisional level long range reconnaissance and raiding companies. Initially intended to be called LRRRCs the name was changed in mid training as a deception plan.

Strength was authorised as 5 officers and 114 men broken down into three platoons of 1 officer plus 36 men. This further broke down into 3 sections of 8 plus three mg teams of 3 plus an NCO forming a weapons section. Few units however reached this level of personnel, most being at perhaps half strength.. All support matters other than medics were provided from divisional staff.

Training was conducted at Bad Tolz by members of the 10th Special Forces Group with the first course starting in May 1997. Training lasted ten weeks and covered physical fitness, weapon handling of foreign and support weapons, land navigation, forward observation, vehicle handling and vehicle maintenance. In July the course was reduced to four weeks with the personnel being assigned a speciality instead of covering the broad spectrum.

It was proposed to equip the Marauders with HMMWVs but there were never enough to go round (although many units “liberated” them) and M151s were often issued. Also seen were FAVs. Very occasionally light armour could be encountered The best known example was is the 8th Division's Marauder company with two Wiesels that were traded from the German Army. These were both lost in action during the 8th's drive through Poland in the summer of 2000.

Most divisions in Europe used Marauder Companies. The name however led to problems as the term marauder had by now become synonymous with bandits (it has been suggested that this is due to the first bandits being mistaken for Marauder Companies). From 1st January 2000 they returned to the name LRRRCs.

The idea has also been adopted in the US after Operation Omega under the name (Rapid Deployment Groups – MILGOV and Mobile Strike Companies - CIVGOV) .

CENTCOM has generally not used the concept as the higher proportion of light units have meant that they are not needed to the same level.
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Old 06-30-2011, 05:00 PM
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Default Raiders

I like it. I've proposed a similar in-theatre Recondo school for training divisional LRRP companies for long-range reconaissance patrolling.

http://forum.juhlin.com/showthread.p...hlight=recondo (see post #10)

I've also proposed a similar multinational [NTO] "raider" unit for use by Corps level HQ (1st Interallied Commando).

http://forum.juhlin.com/showthread.p...t=inter-allied

For your concept, I would change the name to Raider Companies. There's precedent in the U.S. armed forces for use of this term. Marauder is synonymous with lawlessness and banditry. It sounds cool, but after about '98, it would become confusing. Maybe the units started out designated "marauder" and then changed to "raider" later on.
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Old 06-30-2011, 05:22 PM
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Historically, the term Scouts or Rangers would make a bit more sense. The US Army had long used scouts (not just Indian but local colonials in the pre-Revolution era and local militia during the War of 1812 and Civil War). Of course the term Rangers was already taken by the 75th Regiment but there were no official "Scout" units (except perhaps the 207th Infantry Group, Alaska Army National Guard, mislabeled and enlarged in the U.S. Army Vehicle Guide as the 1st and 2nd Infantry Brigades (Arctic Recon)).

Either way it's still a very good write up. Thanks.

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Old 06-30-2011, 08:22 PM
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Would these be in addition to the LRP (or is is LRSU?) unit in the divisional Military Intelligence battalion? IIRC, those guys had a lot of Ranger-qualified individuals, but I can't remember if it's a platoon or company. They were definitely scouts and not raiders, though.

I remember this, from when the Black Beret was instituted to give morale. I had a pal in the EW side of an MI battalion, who told me the big and burly-looking fellows in his unit were not happy to be giving "their" berets to the geeks and paper-pushers of the rest of the battalion.

To my mind, '97 may be too early, but around '98, when things break down and the front goes static, I could see SACEur (wearing his Seventh Army CG hat) setting this up to give his division commanders more recon assets at their disposal. I'd think these might be the first guys to get access to horses, and/or the last ones to lose access to helos.
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Old 06-30-2011, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Adm.Lee View Post
I remember this, from when the Black Beret was instituted to give morale. I had a pal in the EW side of an MI battalion, who told me the big and burly-looking fellows in his unit were not happy to be giving "their" berets to the geeks and paper-pushers of the rest of the battalion.
Ironically, the Rangers are getting their black berets back, now that the rest of the Army has decided to switch back to patrol caps.
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Old 06-30-2011, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Adm.Lee View Post
Would these be in addition to the LRP (or is is LRSU?) unit in the divisional Military Intelligence battalion? IIRC, those guys had a lot of Ranger-qualified individuals, but I can't remember if it's a platoon or company. They were definitely scouts and not raiders, though.
The term is LRSU (unit) or LRSD (detachment) or LRSC (company). When the Army organized the LRSC's in the late 80's all officers and NCO had to Airborne, HALO and Ranger Q'd. Enlisted personell had to be Airborne and pre-Ranger Q'd. More often than not all most all the early teams consisted entirely of Ranger Q'd (or tabbed if you prefer) personell.

I like the Idea of fast moving raiding parties to harass the enemy or disrupt thier supply lines. Sir James you are a madman! All of your write ups are excellent.
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Old 06-30-2011, 10:40 PM
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If they weren't organised until post nuke, then I'd imagine the requirement for airborne/parachute/halo qualification would be dropped.
Emphasis would be placed on physical fitness, long distance marching, horse riding, and vehicle skills, in addition to rifle, machinegun, demolitions, boobytraps and mine warfare.
I see their role being similar to that of the Finnish Sissi units - stay behind the lines acting as guerrillas and saboteurs, living off the land and whatever they capture from the enemy.
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Old 06-30-2011, 11:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Legbreaker View Post
Emphasis would be placed on physical fitness, long distance marching, horse riding, and vehicle skills, in addition to rifle, machinegun, demolitions, boobytraps and mine warfare.
I see their role being similar to that of the Finnish Sissi units - stay behind the lines acting as guerrillas and saboteurs, living off the land and whatever they capture from the enemy.
Sounds like a PC party to me...
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:28 AM
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It does indeed, however I believe the Raiders role would keep them away from using heavy weapons and enemy AFVs as much as possible - get in fast, do bucketloads of damage to the soft underbelly of the rear echelon, and get the hell out again before the tanks and mechanised infantry show up.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:55 AM
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I would just have the situation be that MTOE changes were authorized to bump the divisional LRSD up to company strength and re-orged to make them more like Korean War era divisional Ranger companies.
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Old 07-01-2011, 10:12 AM
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I can see a company-level force for special ops at the division level, although they would most likely be called a Ranger Company or even a Reconnaissance Company. Really doubt that they would be called a Raider Company (Raider is usually considered to be Marine terminology).

As for the layout of the company's themselves, there would be some sort of rear echleon support belonging to the company. The experience with the Ranger or LRRP companies in Korea (and Vietnam confirmed it again), is that a even a independent company needed clerks, cooks and drivers, this was why the Ranger Battalions were formed after Vietnam, their headquarters company is large enough to provide detachments to support independent company operations.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:16 PM
James Langham James Langham is offline
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Default Designer's notes

Thanks for all the input guys.

The name was actually the hardest part - there is a precedent for it though - Merrill's Marauders in World War Two. I considered scouts but it didn't fit with the role (and has been said it tends to be used for allied troops) and I can see the 75th sharing...

It was in the back of my mind that it is an ideal PC group.

Mwould have no specialist requirement to join but be of a high standard to assimilate the training.

They would be an additional unit as they have a different role.

As to support I felt that as the unit was going to be out of contact for long periods and the support staff would be seen by HQs as having nothing to do so reabsorbed - I may well need to add that as a note. By 2000 they will have some hired cooks, etc (probably paid for with looted items).

I will probably add a note about the use of UAZ469s and horses.

Does the organisation and equipment look about right to everyone? Bear in mind they are designed as a raiding force. I probably need to add an anti-tank capability (maybe TOW on the HMMWV). Of the top of my head assume two vehicles per section, 1 with MG(s) and 1 with TOW (Mk19 could replace either).

I like the comparison to Sissi although I see the role as returning after each raid.

Once again thanks for all the constructive feedback.

PS Feel free to just change the name to your favourite one in your campaign.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:27 PM
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I think anti-armour capability would be very much secondary to destruction of softer targets. They might carry a handful of AT weapons, but only for self defence.
The main weapons would be small arms, machineguns and demolition charges, with mines and booby traps laid behind them to cover their withdrawal.
Transport would be whatever was available, fast and suitable to the mission.
Another role they may have is the acquisition of supplies from enemy supply dumps instead of destroying them. In this case they may move in on foot and steal anything on wheels able to haul whatever can be grabbed quickly.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
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I think anti-armour capability would be very much secondary to destruction of softer targets. They might carry a handful of AT weapons, but only for self defence.
The main weapons would be small arms, machineguns and demolition charges, with mines and booby traps laid behind them to cover their withdrawal.
Transport would be whatever was available, fast and suitable to the mission.
Another role they may have is the acquisition of supplies from enemy supply dumps instead of destroying them. In this case they may move in on foot and steal anything on wheels able to haul whatever can be grabbed quickly.
Agree with the use of mines BUT I. think some AT capability is needed as otherwise a single BRDM would mean disaster. I'll also add a note re the fitting of smoke dischargers to the vehicles to help evade.

Personally I would be somewhat "imaginative" when interpreting orders that involve me rellying on stealing transport to get out, especially considering the condition of many vehicles in TW2000, although to be fair this would be of great use as the war drags on.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:52 PM
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Agreed that some AT capability is warranted, but not so much that the unit feels they have the ability to actually stand and fight when faced with enemy AFVs.
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Old 07-01-2011, 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by James Langham View Post
Does the organisation and equipment look about right to everyone? Bear in mind they are designed as a raiding force. I probably need to add an anti-tank capability (maybe TOW on the HMMWV). Of the top of my head assume two vehicles per section, 1 with MG(s) and 1 with TOW (Mk19 could replace either).

I like the comparison to Sissi although I see the role as returning after each raid.

Once again thanks for all the constructive feedback.

PS Feel free to just change the name to your favourite one in your campaign.
-Emphasis added. This is why I think Raider is the more appropriate nomenclature here.

Re AT capability: SOF Humvees in Afghanistan and Iraq usually have a couple AT-4s and one or two Javelin ATGMs strapped down within easy reach.

There was an episode in N. Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom where some Green Berets mounted in Humvees [dismounted] and destroyed some Iraqi AFVs (IIRC, a couple of T-55s, a BMP or two, and an MTLB) with Javelins. Then they called in airstrikes (IIRC from a navy F-14*), one of which hit a friendly unit causing some blue-on-blue casualties.

I think an M-2HB with some AP and/or a MK-19 with some HEDP would be able to handle most light AFVs while a Tankbreaker or TOW could take care of any MBTs encountered. LAWs and RPGs would likely, be standard issue as well.

*Who would have imagined back in the '80s (think Top Gun) that USN F-14 Tomcats would be attacking ground targets with guided [JDAM] bombs?
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Old 07-02-2011, 03:52 AM
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Ironically, the Rangers are getting their black berets back, now that the rest of the Army has decided to switch back to patrol caps.
Last I heard (since the switch was announced just prior to 06/14) is that the black beret is going to remain the army wide head gear for Class As, just not for use in ACUs unless specially directed by local commanders.

Always was a silly idea, in any case. Hopefully I'll have orders by the end of the month letting my put my red one back on.
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Old 07-02-2011, 04:27 AM
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Quote:
Does the organisation and equipment look about right to everyone? Bear in mind they are designed as a raiding force. I probably need to add an anti-tank capability (maybe TOW on the HMMWV). Of the top of my head assume two vehicles per section, 1 with MG(s) and 1 with TOW (Mk19 could replace either).
If they're motorized, I'd say gun them up.

Maybe sections of three vehicles -- two gun trucks, and one cargo humvee being used as a squad carrier. Three man crews on the two gun trucks (possibly augmented by medics, FOs, TACPs, translators, guides, whatever), plus six men on the squad carrier (driver, gunner, plus four man fire team, with the FT leader as vehicle commander when mounted).

Gun trucks with one 50 cal and one Mk-19, and a mounted and dismounted M240 or M60 for the squad carrier. At least in theory one or two Javelins per section, plus AT4s for the dismounts. Practically, they're probably a fan of RPG-7s later in the war like most everyone else in NATO, and possibly are using captured Pact ATGMs or recoilless rifles, etc.

Three of those sections per platoons, with PL and PSG each leading one of them, plus a truck with a 60mm or maybe 81mm mortar crew on it, for a total strength of 40 pax per platoon. Gives a mix of options somewhat like a light version of the old armored cav platoons where you had tanks, scout tracks, an infantry squad, and a mortar carrier all organic to the platoon.

The one other issue I'd see as presented is that these guys simply aren't survivable on a 1997 central European battlefield. The density of enemy AFVs, artillery, and everything else just makes it a non-starter. The US had been steadily moving further and further away from sending a gun truck out onto the German battlefield for decades. I don't think these guys will be able to effectively accomplish anything pre-nuke that the division cavalry squadron can't do better and more survivably.

Now, post-nuke when things start to fall apart, I think a niche for a light cavalry raiding force (which is what these guys are effectively, if they're motorized) emerges. The troop density on the battlefield thins out, even more so AFVs and red air and everything else that makes them non-survivable in the opening phases of the war. Plus you have additional targets emerging like marauders who a fast, light but well armed flying column can go after seriously.

With things getting more static, and air mobility fading fast, these guys start to have an effective mission harassing the other side and screening friendly positions while the bulk of a unit are getting crops in or out of the ground and that sort of thing. With the war kind of becoming more low intensity,

I'm possibly biased and such, but the more I think about it, the more I'd probably have these guys organized post-nuke and becoming D Troop of their respective divisional cavalry squadrons (assuming any surviving air frames are consolidated into C Troop). They might become a separate unit later in the war if/when their respective division converts their cavalry to horse mobility, or might be retained under squadron administrative control and OPCON'ed to brigade or higher S-2 as needed.
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Old 07-03-2011, 08:17 AM
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Default Capitan Conan

Theres a french movie about an irregular unit in World War I., called "Capitaine Conan" (there are trailers on youtube available); good movie about something similar to your idea... something for every T2k-Fan to watch (havent seen it for years).

Last edited by Tombot; 07-03-2011 at 08:37 AM.
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:40 AM
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Revisiting this thread because the idea just occurred to me, in the specific context of 5th ID, that a unit along these lines could be flagged as P Company, which was the 1st Bde/5th ID's Ranger/LRRP unit in Vietnam.

If players were members of this unit, on some special tactical or operational level tasking when things all go pear shaped for 5th ID, it would allow a different sort of spin on Escape from Kalisz. (Maybe the unit even gets an incredibly vague and bare bones mission to link up with B/1/20 SFG as they pull off their Op Reset objective -- but, for OPSEC purposes, without knowing exactly who, what, or why.)
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HorseSoldier View Post
Last I heard (since the switch was announced just prior to 06/14) is that the black beret is going to remain the army wide head gear for Class As, just not for use in ACUs unless specially directed by local commanders.

Always was a silly idea, in any case. Hopefully I'll have orders by the end of the month letting my put my red one back on.
Leave it to the Army; they "correct" their initial bad idea by making the reg more convoluted!
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Old 01-13-2013, 09:10 AM
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The article fully fleshed out.
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File Type: pdf Marauder Companies.pdf (300.7 KB, 251 views)
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:44 PM
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Great stuff, James. Your work on organization, equipment, and training is really cool. Being a v1.0 afficionado, I just can't divorce the term "marauder" from the eponymous criminal/military elements of the T2K verse. I'm going to use your unit concept but call it a Raider Company instead.
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Old 01-13-2013, 07:33 PM
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I like it.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:34 AM
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Great stuff, James. Your work on organization, equipment, and training is really cool. Being a v1.0 afficionado, I just can't divorce the term "marauder" from the eponymous criminal/military elements of the T2K verse. I'm going to use your unit concept but call it a Raider Company instead.
No problems with that, I am not writing canon and EVERYTHING I write is intended for others to modify to suit their own campaign.

I still plan to use the term marauder as it gives a possible origin for the term later in the war as it feels an odd term to have been used to me. I would have thought bandit was more likely in real life.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:53 AM
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Personally I always disliked the term "marauder" as used in T2K. Bandits, thieves, ruffians - they all seemed more fitting, but that's probably just me.
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Old 01-17-2013, 09:19 AM
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I still plan to use the term marauder as it gives a possible origin for the term later in the war as it feels an odd term to have been used to me. I would have thought bandit was more likely in real life.
That makes sense. I imagine that "marauder" companies would still be around later in the war and using the term to describe both friendly forces and bandits could cause some potentially disastrous confusion. It could lead either to friendly fire incidents or to hostile forces being given a pass, as it were. That, and the fact that I've associated the term marauder with bandits ever since getting my hands on the v1.0 box at the tender age of 11, is why I'd prefer not to call the type of units you've so brilliantly described marauders.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:07 PM
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James, you got to stop giving me ideas! Got three online campaigns running and I play in more than I should. And awesome work, by the way.
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:37 PM
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James, you got to stop giving me ideas! Got three online campaigns running and I play in more than I should. And awesome work, by the way.
I concur. I'm jonesing to start a campaign based around part of one of these units. I've even started work on a backstory explaining how the PC's fragment got separated from the rest of the company. I should know better, by now!
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Old 01-18-2013, 04:10 AM
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Guys, the work is often as much yours as mine as everyone contributes ideas publicly and privately. I would be fascinated to hear any info you develop from this and could always then look at incorporating it.

A Marauder company (sorry but I like the name) would be a great PC unit at Kalisz then little backstory is needed.
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