PART OF ABOVE.......3. Intelligence Responsibilities

The following discussion highlights intelligence responsibilities for the respective intelligence organizations of the joint force:

a. Senior Intelligence Organization. The senior intelligence organization--

(1) Establishes plans, policies, and overall requirements for the intelligence activities of the command.

(2) Ensures interoperability and responsiveness of intelligence structure.

(3) Articulates, reviews, and monitors intelligence priorities.

(4) Provides subordinate commands with a single, coordinated intelligence picture by fusing availableintelligence into all-source estimates and assessments.

(5) Coordinates the intelligence plans and operations of subordinate commanders.

(6) Coordinates the collection plan and employment of joint force collection assets.

(7) Identifies/requests external assistance for intelligence resource shortfalls critical to accomplishing assigned missions.

(8) Establishes and supervises intelligence liaison, coordination, and communications requirements with subordinate, lateral, superior, and national intelligence organizations as appropriate.

(9) Prescribes intelligence security requirements for the entire force.

b. Subordinate Command Intelligence Organizations. Subordinate command intelligence organizations collect, process, produce, and disseminate intelligence to support respective commanders in the employment of their forces to accomplish assigned missions. Within their assigned AO, subordinate command intelligence organizations--

(1) Assess threat capabilities and provide intelligence estimates.

(2) Develop supporting intelligence plans.

(3) Support target development and weaponeering.

(4) Task organic collection assets with special focus on reconnaissance and surveillance operations.

(5) Perform battle damage assessment.

(6) Recommend force protection and counterintelligence measures.

4. DRB Intelligence Operations

DRB intelligence and electronic warfare (IEW) operations provide the commander with the tactical intelligence needed to successfully plan and execute combat operations. The commander uses priority intelligence requirements (PIR) to focus the brigade IEW effort and leverage higher echelons to support decision making and facilitate targeting. IEW operations assist the commander to understand the battlefield, support decision-making, and effectively execute combat operations by--

a. Providing indications and warning.

b. Performing intelligence preparation of the battlefield.

c. Performing situation development.

d. Performing target development and supporting targeting.

e. Supporting force protection.

f. Performing battle damage assessment.

See FM 34-1, Intelligence and Electronic Warfare Operations, for detailed discussion of Army IEW principles, tasks, and doctrine.

5. DRB IEW Organizations

The DRB is supported by a variety of military intelligence (MI) and non-MI units capable of gathering and reporting information. Non-MI assets include battalion scouts, counterbattery radars, observation posts, and MP patrols. Brigade MI assets consist of a brigade S2 section and a DS MI company from the divisional MI battalion. Additional tactically tailored IEW assets from division, corps, and theater Army MI units canaugment the brigade if required to support split-based intelligence operations, provide additional capabilities such as ground-based electronic warfare systems, or support other mission requirements.

a. Brigade Commander. The brigade commander focuses the IEW effort by identifying, clearly articulating, and prioritizing intelligence and targeting requirements. The commander must be responsive to IEW requirements of subordinate commanders and, when necessary, broker those requirements with higher echelons. The commander must integrate IEW support into the total combined arms effort to effectively accomplish the mission and exploit the full potential of the intelligence system.

b. Brigade S2. The S2 is the commander's senior intelligence officer and principle advisor on the enemy, terrain, and weather. The S2's first and most important responsibility is to provide the intelligence the commander needs for sound and timely decisions. The S2 takes full advantage of intelligence and targeting information available from direct broadcast systems, special purpose intelligence communications, and automated processing systems to meet the commander's requirements. With the staff support, the S2 plans and controls the brigade IEW operation. To synchronize IEW support with the operation and satisfy staff requirements for intelligence, the S2 works closely with other staff elements and supporting MI units.

c. Battlefield Information Coordination Center (BICC). To supply the commander with intelligence and targeting information, the brigade BICC provides the S2 with an organic collection management, analysis, production, and reporting capability. The BICC develops and manages the execution of the brigade reconnaissance and surveillance (R&S) plan. The BICC also reviews subordinate battalion R&S plans, integrates subordinate plans into the brigade plan, and forwards the consolidated R&S plan to the next higherechelon. The BICC maintains current status of all brigade IEW assets, processes incoming intelligence reports, and disseminates information to subordinate elements.

d. Direct Support MI Company. The DS MI company maintains a habitual training and operational relationship with the brigade. The company provides organic automated intelligence processing, enemy prisoner interrogation, counterintelligence, and ground surveillance radar support. Future capabilities will include unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) control and Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (J-STARS) imagery processing. The company does not possess organic signal intelligence/electronic warfare systems; it relies upon higher echelons for this support. The company consists of a headquarters element, an analysis and control team (ACT), and an operations platoon as depicted in Figure III-1.

The functions of the ACT and operations platoon are--

(1) ACT. The ACT provides the brigade S2 automated intelligence processing, analysis, and dissemination capabilities. Using its ASAS workstation, the ACT provides access to sensitive compartmented information (SCI) databases, reports, graphics, and other intelligence products from higher echelon intelligence organizations such as the division ACE. When augmented with the TROJAN Special Purpose Integrated Remote Intelligence Terminal (SPIRIT), the ACT can support split-based intelligence operations with an intelligence support base located outside the area of operations.

(2) Operations Platoon. The operations platoon provides support and conducts asset management of the company's counterintelligence team, interrogation team, and ground surveillance radar squad. The platoon will possess a UAV section and an imagery processing section when supporting systems are fielded. Table III-1 summarizes the capabilities of the operations platoon.

e. Intelligence Support Base. The division G-2 and MI battalion form the DRB's intelligence support base. The support base is the principle organization in a split-based intelligence operation from which the deployed DRB commander pulls intelligence. It is located in the division garrison or another location outside the AO. The intelligence support base allows the DRB to pull intelligence from its normal intelligence source between the predeployment and operations stages of a force projection operation. This reduces the possibility of intelligence shortfalls that could arise during the deployment phase from reliance on evolving intelligence organizations or relationships. The DRB can continue to receive support from the division ACE in addition to support from intelligence organizations within the theater. Intelligence support from the ACE includes analysis and production of tailored intelligence products; maintaining accessible intelligence databases needed by the DRB; and other intelligence operations that support the DRB. The intelligence support base may also provide the follow-on IEW assets and the deployable intelligence support element (DISE) if the operation involves follow-on Army forces. The intelligence support base complements the theater or JTF intelligence structures; it is not intended to circumvent theater or task force tasking and reporting channels established by the higher echelon Intelligence Director of a joint staff (J-2) or G-2.


The Stryker brigade combat team (SBCT) is a full-spectrum combat force that provides division, corps, or joint task force commanders a unique capability across the spectrum of conflict. The SBCT balances lethality, mobility, and survivability against the requirements for rapid strategic deployability. The SBCT's cavalry squadron (reconnaissance, surveillance, and target acquisition [RSTA]); robust intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) integration capability; and combined arms infantry battalionsensure its versatility across the full range of operations (offense, defense, stability, and support). This chapter highlights the capabilities and limitations of the SBCT, discusses likely scenarios in which the SBCT may be employed, and provides an overview of the SBCT's organizational structure.




Stinger Platoon Operations

Command control of the Stinger platoon is performed by the Stinger platoon leader from his headquarters element. To insure coordination and integration of the Stinger sections in the overall air defense for the supported unit, he normally locates his headquarters element in the vicinity of his parent battery. The purpose of the Stinger headquarters element is to command and control Stinger sections and teams, collect and pass on pertinent information to the sections, and position Stinger teams as required to support the mission.

This chapter will discuss how platoon and section headquarters personnel operate in combat. It describes how platoon personnel prepare for combat operations and how they accomplish their mission.


In the division, the Stinger platoon operates as an element of either a Chaparral or a Vulcan battery. When an ADA battery is supporting amaneuver force, the battery commander is the air defense artillery officer for that maneuver force. For example, when a Vulcan battery is in direct support of a brigade, the Vulcan battery commander is the principal adviser to the brigade commander on air defense matters. The Stinger platoon leader is a subordinate ADA unit leader. He provides assistance to the commander on Stinger matters and receives direction on Stinger employment.

When not deployed with a higher level ADA unit, the Stinger platoon leader can serve as the supported unit's air defense advisor. This situation occurs when, through the process of organizing for combat, the Stinger platoon is the sole air defense unit providing air defense for a maneuver force.

This would also be the case where a Stinger platoon is organic to a separate brigade/regiment. Once priorities are established by the commander, the Stinger platoon leader develops the plans and orders necessary to defend the unit against air attack. The Stinger platoon leader receives direction from the commander/S3 for Stinger employment.


Command Relationships

Troop Leading Procedures

SOPs and Combat Orders

Reconnaissance, Selection and Occupation of Position

Platoon Operations

Platoon Headquarters Internal Operations

Section Headquarters Internal Operations


LRSUs operate up to 200 kilometres (120 mi) from the Forward Line Of Troops (FLOT) for a maximum of 6 days.[citation needed] Their five primary missions are reconnaissance, surveillance, target acquisition, battle damage assessment, and force protection. They also have many secondary missions capabilities to include enemy prisoner-snatch, wiretapping, field assassinations, emergency assaults, general battlefield information (weather and light data, map data, etc.) and enemy equipment/infrastructure sabotage.

LRS team operations are characterized by the following:

  1. LRSU Clandestine operations require Operational Security (OPSEC) and Personal Security (PERSEC) measures and procedures before, during, and after mission employment. This is to protect the individual team members as well as maintain operational integrity of the LRS cell.
  2. Team members depend on stealth, cover, concealment, infantry, and Ranger skills.
  3. Team members avoid contact with enemy forces and local population.
  4. Teams are employed to obtain timely information.
  5. Teams have restricted mobility in the area of operations.
  6. Team members depend on communications, knowing the enemy's order of battle, and equipment identification skills.
  7. The Surveillance or reconnaissance area is small, has a specified route, or is a specific location or installation.
  8. Team equipment and supplies are limited to what can be man packed or cached.
  9. Teams require detailed intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB) and debriefing from the Intelligence Officer(G2) for employment.[2]


LRS units (LRSU) are Infantry company-size elements that are assets within a Battlefield Surveillance Brigade'sReconnaissance & Surveillance Squadron (R&S Squadron) designated as US Army Cavalry but are functionally Airborne Infantry units. The LRSU is structured as an LRS Company comprising three LRS detachments, a communications Platoon, and a Troop Headquarters. Within the LRS company, the LRS detachments typically have designated specialties. Typically, there are three teams, also known as "DETs." 3rd DET typically specializes in mountain warfare. 2nd DET is the dive detachment, specializing in water-borne operations such as scuba diving and infiltrating harbors and ports as well as employing the Zodiac. 1st DET is HALO (High Altitude, Low Open), specializing in airborne operations. This means jumping from a high performance military aircraft at an altitude in excess of ten thousand feet and deploying parachutes at one to two thousand feet. 3rd DET can also perform HAHO (High Altitude, High Open) operations. This means jumping from a high performance military aircraft in excess of ten thousand feet and deploying parachutes shortly after leaving the aircraft. LRS Detachments are organized as five unsupported LRS teams.

LRS Team composition[edit]

As with LRRP units of the past each US Army LRS team is composed of six soldiers:

  • Team Leader (TL) Staff Sergeant (E-6) Preferably Ranger qualified
  • Assistant Team Leader (ATL) Sergeant (E-5) Preferably Ranger qualified
  • Radio Telephone Operator (RTO) Specialist (E-4)
  • Senior Scout Observer (SSO) Specialist/Corporal (E-4)
  • Scout Observer (SO) Specialist/Corporal (E-4)
  • Assistant Radio Telephone Operator (ARTO) Specialist (E-4)

All positions can be held by (E-1 up) to fill positions (upon meeting unit requirements)


Chapter 13

Reconnaissance Operations


You can never have too much reconnaissance.
General George S. Patton Jr., War As I Knew It, 1947
Reconnaissance operations are those operations undertaken to obtain, by visual observation or other detection methods, information about the activities and resources of an enemy or potential enemy, or to secure data concerning the meteorological, hydrographical or geographical characteristics and the indigenous population of a particular area. Reconnaissance primarily relies on the human dynamic rather than technical means. Reconnaissance is a focused collection effort. It is performed before, during, and after other operations to provide information used in the intelligence preparation of the battlefield (IPB) process, as well as by the commander in order to formulate, confirm, or modify his course of action (COA). The four forms of reconnaissance are route, zone, area, and reconnaissance in force.


Reconnaissance Objective
Reconnaissance Fundamentals
   Ensure Continuous Reconnaissance
   Do Not Keep Reconnaissance
   Assets in Reserve
   Orient on the Reconnaissance Objective
   Report Information Rapidly and
   Retain Freedom of Maneuver
   Gain and Maintain Enemy Contact
   Develop the Situation Rapidly
Historical Example
Characteristics of Reconnaissance
Forms of Reconnaissance
   Route Reconnaissance
   Zone Reconnaissance
   Area Reconnaissance
   Reconnaissance in Force
Planning a Reconnaissance
   Intelligence, Surveillance, and
   Reconnaissance Plan
   Reconnaissance-Pull Versus
   Reconnaissance Management
Executing a Reconnaissance
Recuperation and Reconstitution of Reconnaissance Assets

13-1.   Reconnaissance identifies terrain characteristics, enemy and friendly obstacles to movement, and the disposition of enemy forces and civilian population so the commander can maneuver his forces freely and rapidly. Reconnaissance prior to unit movements and occupation of assembly areas is critical to protecting the force and preserving combat power. It also keeps the force free from contact as long as possible so that it can concentrate on its decisive operation.


13-2.   The commander orients his reconnaissance assets by identifying a reconnaissance objective within the area of operation (AO). The reconnaissance objective is a terrain feature, geographic area, or an enemy force about which the commander wants to obtain additional information. The reconnaissance objective clarifies the intent of the reconnaissance effort by specifying the most important result to obtain from the reconnaissance effort. Every reconnaissance mission must specify a reconnaissance objective. The commander assigns a reconnaissance objective based on his priority information requirements (PIR) resulting from the IPB process and the reconnaissance asset's capabilities and limitations. The reconnaissance objective can be information about a specific geographical location, such as the cross-country trafficability of a specific area, a specific enemy activity to be confirmed or denied, or a specific enemy unit to be located and tracked. When the reconnaissance unit does not have enough time to complete all the tasks associated with a specific form of reconnaissance, it uses the reconnaissance objective to guide it in setting priorities.

13-3.   A commander may need to provide additional detailed instructions beyond the reconnaissance objective, such as the specific tasks he wants accomplished or the priority of tasks. He does this by issuing additional guidance to his reconnaissance unit or by specifying these instructions in his tasks to his subordinate units in the operation order. For example, if, based on all technical and human intelligence (HUMINT) sources, a division G2 concludes that the enemy is not in an area and the terrain appears to be trafficable without obstacles, the division commander may decide he does not need a detailed reconnaissance effort forward of his unit. He may direct his cavalry squadron to conduct a zone reconnaissance mission with guidance to move rapidly and report by exception terrain obstacles that will significantly slow the movement of his subordinate maneuver brigades. Alternatively, when the objective is to locate an enemy force, the reconnaissance objective would be that force, and additional guidance would be to conduct only that terrain reconnaissance necessary to find the enemy and develop the situation.


13-4.   The seven fundamentals of successful reconnaissance operations are as follows:

  • Ensure continuous reconnaissance.

  • Do not keep reconnaissance assets in reserve.

  • Orient on the reconnaissance objective.

  • Report information rapidly and accurately.

  • Retain freedom of maneuver.

  • Gain and maintain enemy contact.

  • Develop the situation rapidly.


13-5.   Effective reconnaissance is continuous. The commander conducts reconnaissance before, during, and after all operations. Before an operation, reconnaissance focuses on filling gaps in information about the enemy and the terrain. During an operation, reconnaissance focuses on providing the commander with updated information that verifies the enemy's composition, dispositions, and intentions as the battle progresses. This allows the commander to verify which COA is actually being adopted by the enemy and determine if his plan is still valid based on actual events in the AO. After an operation, reconnaissance focuses on maintaining contact with the enemy to determine his next move and collecting information necessary for planning subsequent operations. When information regarding the current operation is adequate, reconnaissance focuses on gathering information for branches and sequels to current plans. As a minimum, reconnaissance is conducted continuously as an integral part of all security missions, including the conduct of local security for forces not in contact. (See Chapter 12.)

13-6.   Reconnaissance operations over extended distances and time may require pacing reconnaissance assets to maintain the effort, or rotating units to maintain continuous coverage. The human and technical assets used in the reconnaissance effort must be allowed time for rest, resupply, troop leading procedures, additional and refresher training, and preventative maintenance checks and services. The commander must determine not only where, but also when he will need his maximum reconnaissance effort and pace his reconnaissance assets to ensure that adequate assets are available at critical times and places.


13-7.   Reconnaissance assets, like artillery assets, are never kept in reserve. When committed, reconnaissance assets use all of their resources to accomplish the mission. This does not mean that all assets are committed all the time. The commander uses his reconnaissance assets based on their capabilities and METT-TC to achieve the maximum coverage needed to answer the commander's critical information requirements (CCIR). At times, this requires the commander to withhold or position reconnaissance assets to ensure that they are available at critical times and places. The rest required by reconnaissance assets to sustain the reconnaissance effort is not to be obtained by placing them in reserve. However, all reconnaissance assets should be treated as committed assets with specific missions assigned at all times. Units with multiple roles, specifically armored and air cavalry, that can conduct reconnaissance, security, and other combat missions in an economy-of-force role may be kept as a reserve for security or combat missions.


13-8.   The commander uses the reconnaissance objective to focus his unit's reconnaissance efforts. Commanders of subordinate reconnaissance elements remain focused on achieving this objective, regardless of what their forces encounter during the mission. When time, limitations of unit capabilities, or enemy action prevents a unit from accomplishing all the tasks normally associated with a particular form of reconnaissance, the unit uses the reconnaissance objective to focus the reconnaissance effort.


13-9.   Reconnaissance assets must acquire and report accurate and timely information on the enemy, civil considerations, and the terrain over which operations are to be conducted. Information may quickly lose its value. Reconnaissance units report exactly what they see and, if appropriate, what they do not see. Seemingly unimportant information may be extremely important when combined with other information. Negative reports are as important as reports of enemy activity. Failure to report tells the commander nothing. The unit information management plan ensures that unit reconnaissance assets have the proper communication equipment to support the integrated intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) plan.


13-10.   Reconnaissance assets must retain battlefield mobility to successfully complete their missions. If these assets are decisively engaged, reconnaissance stops and a battle for survival begins. Reconnaissance assets must have clear engagement criteria that support the maneuver commander's intent. They must employ proper movement and reconnaissance techniques, use overwatching fires, and standing operating procedures (SOP). Initiative and knowledge of both the terrain and the enemy reduce the likelihood of decisive engagement and help maintain freedom of movement. Prior to initial contact, the reconnaissance unit adopts a combat formation designed to gain contact with the smallest possible friendly element. This provides the unit with the maximum opportunity for maneuver and enables it to avoid having the entire unit become decisively engaged. The IPB process can identify anticipated areas of likely contact to the commander. Using indirect fires to provide suppression and obscuration as well as destroy point targets is a method reconnaissance assets use to retain their freedom of maneuver.


13-11.   Once a unit conducting reconnaissance gains contact with the enemy, it maintains that contact unless the commander directing the reconnaissance orders otherwise or the survival of the unit is at risk. This does not mean that individual scout and reconnaissance teams cannot break contact with the enemy. The commander of the unit conducting reconnaissance is responsible for maintaining contact using all available resources. That contact can range from surveillance to close combat. Surveillance, combined with stealth, is often sufficient to maintain contact and is the preferred method. Units conducting reconnaissance avoid combat unless it is necessary to gain essential information, in which case the units use maneuver (fire and movement) to maintain contact while avoiding decisive engagement.


13-12.   When a reconnaissance asset encounters an enemy force or an obstacle, it must quickly determine the threat it faces. For an enemy force, it must determine the enemy's composition, dispositions, activities, and movements and assess the implications of that information. For an obstacle, it must determine the type and extent of the obstacle and whether it is covered by fire. Obstacles can provide the attacker with information concerning the location of enemy forces, weapon capabilities, and organization of fires. In most cases, the reconnaissance unit developing the situation uses actions on contact. (See Chapter 4 for a discussion of actions on contact.)


13-13.   Military history contains numerous examples of the importance of reconnaissance operations. The following historical example illustrates the major role of reconnaissance operations in ensuring the success of an operation. This non-US, medieval example illustrates that the study of other armies and other times has a great deal to contribute in helping the tactician understand the art and science of tactics.

The Battle of the Sajo River

Reconnaissance was critical in determining enemy dispositions and taking advantage of the terrain in this and many other Mongol battles. The Mongol army conducted continuous reconnaissance with a definite reconnaissance objective, and a significant part of their success resulted from their reconnaissance operations. During operations, light cavalry preceded each of their army's main columns performing reconnaissance. They reported on terrain and weather conditions as well as the enemy's size, location, and movements. If a Mongol column met an enemy force that it could defeat, it did so. If it could not, its light cavalry maintained contact with the enemy, developed the situation to its advantage, and maintained freedom of movement. The Mongol light cavalry inflicted casualties and disrupted the enemy's movements while the main Mongol army deployed for action.

Figure 13-1. Mongol Army Route
Figure 13-1. Mongol Army Route


Figure 13-2. Mongol Army Pursuit
Figure 13-2. Mongol Army Pursuit

In March 1241, a Mongol army of some 70,000 crossed the Carpathian Mountains from Russia into the Hungarian Plain. By mid-April, its light cavalry located the 100,000-man Hungarian army near the cities of Buda and Pest on the Danube River. In response, the Mongol army concentrated its previously dispersed columns as it approached the Danube. Once that the Mongols knew that they had been detected by the Hungarians, they deliberately withdrew about 100 miles northeast and led the Hungarians to a previously selected spot, Mohi Heath, on the Sajo River. The Mongols crossed the Sajo using an existing stone bridge and camped east of the river. The Hungarians followed and halted on the west bank, built a camp, took the stone bridge, and left a bridgehead on the east bank. Mongol reconnaissance discovered the location and dispositions within the Hungarian camp as well as a river-crossing site north of the camp. After dark, the main body of the Mongol army moved to cross the river at the crossing site. In addition to using the ford, the Mongols constructed a bridge to aid their crossing.

The next morning, the remainder of the Mongol army conducted a supporting attack on the Hungarian force at the stone bridge, drawing the Hungarian army out of its camp to fight. While the supporting Mongol forces succeeded in recrossing the Sajo via the stone bridge, the fighting was hard and they nearly lost their battle while waiting for the main body to come to their support. After 2 hours, the Mongol main body fell on the Hungarian rear and flank, driving the Hungarians back into their camp. As was Mongol practice, they deliberately left an escape route from the enemy camp open. The ensuing Mongol pursuit destroyed the Hungarian army when they tried to withdraw from their camp.


13-14.   The responsibility for conducting reconnaissance does not reside solely with specifically organized units. Every unit has an implied mission to report information about the terrain, civilian activities, and friendly and enemy dispositions, regardless of its battlefield location and primary function. Frontline troops and reconnaissance patrols of maneuver units at all echelons collect information on enemy units with which they are in contact. In rear areas, reserve maneuver forces, fire support assets, air defense, military police, host nation agencies, combat support, and combat service support elements observe and report civilian and enemy activity. Although all units conduct reconnaissance, those specifically trained in reconnaissance tasks are ground and air cavalry, scouts, long-range reconnaissance units, and Special Forces. Some branches, such as the Corps of Engineers and the Chemical Corps, have specific reconnaissance tasks to perform that complement the force's overall reconnaissance effort. However, the corps and division commanders will primarily use their organic cavalry and intelligence elements to conduct reconnaissance operations.

13-15.   At battalion level and above, the commander assigns missions to his ISR assets based on their organization, equipment, and training. The commander must know the capabilities and limitations of his available reconnaissance assets to ensure the employment of these assets within their capabilities and on missions for which they have been trained and equipped. Table 13-1shows the typical nesting of ISR assets available at different tactical echelons.

Table 13-1. Typical ISR Assets Available

  Platoon Co/Tm BN/TF Brigade Division Corps EAC
Reconnaissance Patrol XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX
Scout Platoon AAA AAA XXX XXX      
Brigade Recon Troop   AAA AAA XXX XXX    
Cavalry Troop (Sep Bde)   AAA AAA XXX XXX XXX XXX
Chemical Reconnaissance   AAA XXX XXX XXX XXX XXX
FA Target Acq Systems     AAA AAA XXX XXX  
ADA Target Acq Systems     AAA AAA XXX XXX XXX
Grd Surveillance Radars   AAA XXX XXX      
Other MI Collection Sys     AAA XXX XXX XXX XXX
Division Cavalry Squadron       AAA XXX XXX  
Air Cavalry       AAA XXX XXX XXX
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles     AAA* XXX* XXX XXX XXX
Cavalry Regiment         AAA XXX XXX
Long-Range Surveillance Unit         AAA* XXX XXX
Technical Surveillance Platforms     AAA AAA AAA AAA XXX
XXX = Echelon controls or routinely tasks the asset.
AAA = Echelon can routinely expect the information from that source to be made available to it.
* Can be found in some divisions.

13-16.   A commander primarily conducts reconnaissance with a combination of manned ground and air assets supported by technical systems. Acting in concert, these assets create a synergy, using the strengths of one system to overcome the weaknesses of another. To produce this synergy, the commander must delineate reporting procedures for all units to pass on information gathered during reconnaissance operations. This facilitates rapid mission execution.

13-17.   Dedicated reconnaissance assets are easily overtasked and overextended. The commander uses all available resources, not just reconnaissance units, to satisfy his information requirements. Ground reconnaissance can involve assets not specifically tailored for the mission. Engineer reconnaissance units collect information on how the terrain affects the movement of enemy and friendly forces. Nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC) reconnaissance teams can determine the presence or absence of NBC contamination and the extent of that contamination. Artillery forward observers, fire support teams, and combat observation and lasing teams (COLTs) report combat information as they observe the battlefield. Air defense units observe and report enemy aircraft and air corridors in use.

13-18.   Ground reconnaissance elements are generally limited in the depth to which they can conduct reconnaissance. However, they can operate under weather conditions that prohibit air reconnaissance operations.

13-19.   Reconnaissance conducted by manned Army aviation platforms complements ground reconnaissance by greatly increasing the speed and depth with which reconnaissance operations can be conducted over a given area. Air reconnaissance can operate easily over terrain that hinders ground operations, such as swamps, extremely rugged terrain, or deep snow. Aviation assets can operate at a considerable depth, far in advance of the normal capability of dedicated ground reconnaissance elements normally focused on the close fight. Thus, they provide the commander with additional time to attack or otherwise react to the enemy's presence. Scout and attack helicopters use their optics, video, thermal imaging, and communications capabilities to detect and report the enemy. All types of aviation units generate pilot reports in the course of conducting their primary missions. These reports are often a source of valuable combat information.

13-20.   While several technical systems can perform reconnaissance, the majority of these types of systems can be more accurately described as surveillance platforms. Surveillance complements reconnaissance by cueing the commitment of reconnaissance assets against specific locations or specially targeted enemy units. Surveillance provides information while reconnaissance answers the commander's specific questions.

13-21.   Military intelligence (MI) assets conduct both surveillance and reconnaissance missions. They provide intelligence and electronic warfare (IEW) support, such as electronic intercept, ground surveillance radars, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and remotely emplaced sensors. Theater and national reconnaissance and surveillance systems provide broadcast dissemination of information and intelligence to the commander and can provide near real-time imagery as a part of an integrated ISR effort. Artillery and air defense target acquisition radars can complement MI surveillance systems as a part of the ISR effort. HUMINT collection occurs through face-to-face interrogation of captured enemy soldiers, screening of the civilian population, and debriefing of friendly soldiers, such as scouts and SOF.


13-22.   The four forms of reconnaissance operations are—

  • Route reconnaissance.

  • Zone reconnaissance.

  • Area reconnaissance.

  • Reconnaissance in force (RIF).

Table 13-2 shows what types of dedicated reconnaissance units are typically assigned the missions of conducting the four forms of reconnaissance operations.

Table 13-2. Dedicated Reconnaissance Units and Forms of Reconnaissance Operations

Route X X X      
Zone X X X X X  
Area X X X X X  
Recon in Force       X X X


13-23.   Route reconnaissance is a form of reconnaissance that focuses along a specific line of communication, such as a road, railway, or cross-country mobility corridor. It provides new or updated information on route conditions, such as obstacles and bridge classifications, and enemy and civilian activity along the route. A route reconnaissance includes not only the route itself, but also all terrain along the route from which the enemy could influence the friendly force's movement. The commander normally assigns this mission when he wants to use a specific route for friendly movement.

Organization of Forces

13-24.   The commander may assign a route reconnaissance as a separate mission or as a specified task for a unit conducting a zone or area reconnaissance. A scout platoon can conduct a route reconnaissance over only one route at a time. For larger organizations, the number of scout platoons available directly influences the number of routes that can be covered at one time. Integrating ground, air, and technical assets assures a faster and more complete route reconnaissance.

13-25.   A ground reconnaissance effort is essential if the mission is to conduct detailed reconnaissance of the route or the mission requires clearing the enemy from an AO that includes the route and the terrain around the route. The forces assigned to conduct this ground reconnaissance must be robust enough to handle expected enemy forces in the AO. If the commander expects them to make contact with enemy forces possessing more combat power than that typically found in enemy reconnaissance elements, he ensures that his forces conducting ground reconnaissance have access to readily available fire support. If the commander requires detailed information on the route, engineer reconnaissance assets can determine the classification of critical points along the route more quickly and accurately than scouts can. If the commander anticipates significant obstacles, combat engineers should be included as part of the force. If NBC contamination is expected, NBC reconnaissance assets should accompany the force conducting ground reconnaissance because they can detect and determine the extent of contamination more accurately and quickly than scouts can. Air reconnaissance can be used if the reconnaissance mission must be completed quickly. However, aerial reconnaissance can rarely clear an enemy force from a location where it can affect movement on the route and aircraft cannot breach obstacles. When time is limited, air reconnaissance is essential to determine which areas are clear of enemy forces and obstacles, and to cue ground reconnaissance regarding where to focus its efforts.

Figure 13-3. Route Reconnaissance Control Measures
Figure 13-3. Route Reconnaissance Control Measures

Control Measures

13-26.   Control measures for a route reconnaissance create an AO for the unit conducting the reconnaissance. (See Figure 13-3.) The commander places lateral boundaries on both sides of the route, far enough out to allow reconnaissance of all terrain from which the enemy could dominate the route. He places a line of departure (LD) perpendicular to the route short of the start point (SP), allowing adequate space for the unit conducting the reconnaissance to deploy into formation. The LD creates the rear boundary of the AO. A limit of advance (LOA) is placed far enough beyond the route's release point (RP) to include any terrain from which the enemy could dominate the route. A SP and a RP define that section of the route where the unit collects detailed information. He may add phase lines (PLs) and checkpoints to maintain coordinated reconnaissance, control movement, or designate critical points. He places additional control measures to coordinate indirect and direct fire as necessary. He places these control measures on terrain features that are identifiable from both the ground and the air to assist in air-to-ground coordination.


13-27.   Unless the commander orders otherwise, the unit conducting a route reconnaissance performs specific tasks within the limits of its capabilities. If a unit does not have the time or resources to complete all of these tasks, it must inform the commander assigning the mission. He must then issue further guidance on which tasks the unit must complete or the priority of each task, which is usually clear from the reconnaissance objective. If, after starting the reconnaissance, the unit determines that it cannot complete an assigned task, such as clearing the enemy or reducing obstacles to create lanes as required to support the maneuver of the main body along the route, it must report and await further instructions.

13-28.   Route reconnaissance tasks are as follows:

  • Find, report, and clear within capabilities all enemy forces that can influence movement along the route.

  • Determine the trafficability of the route; can it support the friendly force?

  • Reconnoiter all terrain that the enemy can use to dominate movement along the route, such as choke points, ambush sites, and pickup zones, landing zones, and drop zones.

  • Reconnoiter all built-up areas, contaminated areas, and lateral routes along the route.

  • Evaluate and classify all bridges, defiles, overpasses and underpasses, and culverts along the route.

  • Locate any fords, crossing sites, or bypasses for existing and reinforcing obstacles (including built-up areas) along the route.

  • Locate all obstacles and create lanes as specified in execution orders.

  • Report the above route information to the headquarters initiating the route reconnaissance mission, to include providing a sketch map or a route overlay.

(See FM 3-34.212 and FM 3-20.95 for additional information concerning route reconnaissance.)


13-29.   Zone reconnaissance is a form of reconnaissance that involves a directed effort to obtain detailed information on all routes, obstacles, terrain, and enemy forces within a zone defined by boundaries. Obstacles include both existing and reinforcing, as well as areas with NBC contamination. The commander assigns a zone reconnaissance mission when he needs additional information on a zone before committing other forces in the zone. It is appropriate when the enemy situation is vague, existing knowledge of the terrain is limited, or combat operations have altered the terrain. A zone reconnaissance may include several route or area reconnaissance missions assigned to subordinate units.

13-30.   A zone reconnaissance is normally a deliberate, time-consuming process. It takes more time than any other reconnaissance mission, so the commander must allow adequate time to conduct it. A zone reconnaissance is normally conducted over an extended distance. It requires all ground elements executing the zone reconnaissance to be employed abreast of each other. However, when the reconnaissance objective is the enemy force, a commander may forgo a detailed reconnaissance of the zone and focus his assets on those named areas of interest (NAI) that would reveal enemy dispositions and intentions. A reconnaissance unit can never disregard terrain when focusing on the enemy. However, it minimizes its terrain reconnaissance to that which may influence an NAI.

Organization of Forces

13-31.   Considerations for organizing a zone reconnaissance are the same as for organizing a route reconnaissance except that several subordinate units, rather than just one unit, operate abreast during the zone reconnaissance. If the commander expects significant enemy forces to be found within the zone, he should provide the force conducting the zone reconnaissance with a reserve. This reserve should have adequate combat power to extract elements of the reconnaissance force from decisive engagement. In an armored cavalry squadron of an armored cavalry regiment, the tank company normally performs this task. If a unit conducts a zone reconnaissance out of supporting range of the main body, the commander ordering the zone reconnaissance provides the reconnaissance unit with adequate fire support assets that can move with the reconnaissance unit.

Figure 13-4. Zone Reconnaissance Control Measures
Figure 13-4. Zone Reconnaissance Control Measures

Control Measures

13-32.   The commander controls a zone reconnaissance by assigning an AO to the unit conducting the reconnaissance. (See Figure 13-4.) The lateral boundaries, a LD, and a LOA define this AO. Within the AO, the force conducting the zone reconnaissance further divides the AO with additional lateral boundaries to define subordinate unit AOs. Subordinate AOs are not necessarily the same size. Phase lines and contact points, located where the commander determines that it is necessary for adjacent units to make physical contact, are used to coordinate the movement of elements operating abreast. He may further designate the time that this physical contact takes place. He uses checkpoints to indicate critical terrain features and to coordinate air and ground teamwork. He may use fire support coordinating measures to control direct and indirect fires. He uses additional control measures as necessary. In addition, the commander assigning the zone reconnaissance mission must specify the route the reconnaissance unit must use to enter the AO. All control measures should be on recognizable terrain when possible.


13-33.   Unless the commander orders otherwise, a unit conducting a zone reconnaissance performs the following tasks within the limits of its capabilities. If a unit does not have the time or resources to complete all of these tasks, it must inform the commander assigning the mission. He must then issue further guidance on which tasks the unit must complete or the priority of tasks, which is usually clear from the reconnaissance objective. After starting the reconnaissance, if the unit determines that it cannot complete an assigned task, such as clear enemy or reduce obstacles in zone to create lanes as required to support the main body's maneuver, it must report and await further instructions.

13-34.   Zone reconnaissance tasks are as follows:

  • Find and report all enemy forces within the zone.

  • Clear all enemy forces in the designated AO within the capability of the unit conducting reconnaissance.

  • Determine the trafficability of all terrain within the zone, including built-up areas.

  • Locate and determine the extent of all contaminated areas in the zone.

  • Evaluate and classify all bridges, defiles, overpasses, underpasses, and culverts in the zone.

  • Locate any fords, crossing sites, or bypasses for existing and reinforcing obstacles (including built-up areas) in the zone.

  • Locate all obstacles and create lanes as specified in execution orders.

  • Report the above information to the commander directing the zone reconnaissance, to include providing a sketch map or overlay.


13-35.   Area reconnaissance is a form of reconnaissance that focuses on obtaining detailed information about the terrain or enemy activity within a prescribed area. This area may include a town, a ridgeline, woods, an airhead, or any other feature critical to operations. The area may consist of a single point, such as a bridge or an installation. Areas are normally smaller than zones and are not usually contiguous to other friendly areas targeted for reconnaissance. Because the area is smaller, an area reconnaissance moves faster than a zone reconnaissance.

Organization of Forces

13-36.   Considerations for the organization of forces for an area reconnaissance are the same as for organizing a zone reconnaissance. (See paragraphs 13-31 to 13-33.)

Figure 13-5. Area Reconnaissance Control Measures
Figure 13-5. Area Reconnaissance Control Measures

Control Measures

13-37.   The commander assigning an area reconnaissance specifies the area for reconnaissance with a single continuous line to enclose the area to reconnoiter. Alternatively, he may designate the area by marking lateral boundaries, a LD, and a LOA. An area reconnaissance mission always specifies the route to take in moving to the area. The commander of the unit conducting the area reconnaissance mission can use control measures for a zone reconnaissance within the AO to control the operation of his subordinate elements. (See Figure 13-5.)


13-38.   The tasks for an area reconnaissance are also the same as for a zone reconnaissance. (See paragraph 13-34.)


13-39.   A reconnaissance in force is a deliberate combat operation designed to discover or test the enemy's strength, dispositions, and reactions or to obtain other information. Battalion-size task forces or larger organizations usually conduct a reconnaissance in force (RIF) mission. A commander assigns a RIF mission when the enemy is known to be operating within an area and the commander cannot obtain adequate intelligence by any other means. A unit may also conduct a RIF in restrictive-type terrain where the enemy is likely to ambush smaller reconnaissance forces. A RIF is an aggressive reconnaissance, conducted as an offensive operation with clearly stated reconnaissance objectives. The overall goal of a RIF is to determine enemy weaknesses that can be exploited. It differs from other reconnaissance operations because it is normally conducted only to gain information about the enemy and not the terrain.

Organization of Forces

13-40.   While specifically trained and equipped units usually conduct the other forms of reconnaissance operations, any maneuver force can conduct a RIF. The force conducting a RIF is organized as if it is conducting offensive operations. However, the lack of enemy information dictates that the force be large and strong enough to develop the situation, protect the force, cause the enemy to react, and put the enemy at some risk. The less known about the enemy, the stronger the force conducting the RIF must be. Because of the lack of information about the enemy, a commander normally conducts a RIF as a movement to contact or a series of frontal attacks across a broad frontage.

Control Measures

13-41.   The control measures for a RIF are the same as for offensive operations. The operation is conducted as an movement to contact with limited objectives. (Chapter 4 discusses the conduct of a movement to contact.)


13-42.   A unit conducting a RIF performs the following tasks within the limits of its capabilities. If a unit does not have the time or resources to complete all of these tasks, it must inform the commander assigning the mission. He must then issue further guidance on which tasks the unit must complete or the priority of tasks, which is usually clear from the reconnaissance objective. After starting the RIF, if the unit determines that it cannot complete an assigned task, it must report and await further instructions. Reconnaissance in force tasks are—

  • Penetrating the enemy's security area and determining its size and depth.

  • Determining the location and disposition of enemy main positions.

  • Attacking enemy main positions and attempting to cause the enemy to react by using local reserves or major counterattack forces, employing fire support assets, adjusting positions, and employing specific weapon systems.

  • Determining weaknesses in the enemy's dispositions to exploit.


13-43.   Reconnaissance contributes significantly to a commander's battlefield visualization. It supports the overall integrated ISR plan, which in turn supports the commander's decision making process.

13-44.   The commander must make judicious yet aggressive use of his reconnaissance assets. Reconnaissance planning ensures that available reconnaissance assets produce the greatest results. Because there are never enough assets to accomplish all tasks, the commander must set priorities. Generating many unfocused missions rapidly wears down assets, making them ineffective. Improperly using assets can also leave an enemy vulnerability undiscovered.

13-45.   The commander ensures the coordination and synchronization of his reconnaissance effort at all echelons. Since the need for reconnaissance cuts across all parts of the operational framework and core functions, reconnaissance operations demand an integrated approach to planning, preparation, and execution. The two habitual participants in the reconnaissance planning process are the echelon operations and intelligence staff officers. The echelon operations staff officer (G3 or S3) has primary staff responsibility for reconnaissance planning, allocating, and tasking resources. Normally, he has staff responsibility for ground and air reconnaissance assets, which includes engineers, NBC, and artillery. The echelon intelligence staff officer (G2 or S2) has primary responsibility for ground surveillance systems and special electronics mission aircraft. The commander ensures these two staff elements adopt an integrated combined arms approach to planning, preparing, executing, and assessing reconnaissance.


13-46.   The commander closely integrates reconnaissance missions with other intelligence-collection efforts to ensure that each ISR asset is used to its best advantage. The echelon staff, primarily the intelligence staff officer, identifies gaps in the intelligence available, based on the initial IPB and the situationally dependent CCIR. The IPB process helps determine factors that impact on the reconnaissance effort, such as—

  • Avenues of approach that support friendly movement and exploit enemy weaknesses.

  • Key terrain, choke points, obstacles, and danger areas.

  • Enemy positions, especially flanks that can be exploited.

  • Observation points.

The reconnaissance effort and the IPB process are interactive and iterative, each feeding the other. (See FM 2-0 for more information on the intelligence cycle. FM 2-01.3 addresses the IPB process.)

13-47.   The intelligence staff officer develops an initial integrated ISR plan to acquire information to help answer those PIR based on available reconnaissance and surveillance assets. The ISR plan assigns specific intelligence acquisition tasks to specific units for action. It integrates surveillance and reconnaissance into the overall intelligence-collection plan.

13-48.   The echelon operations staff officer uses the initial ISR plan as the base in preparing the ISR annex to the operation order. The ISR annex provides for the flexible execution of reconnaissance tasks, including providing for adequate command and control, indirect fires, and logistics when completed. (FM 5-0 discusses reconnaissance and the military decision making process.)


13-49.   In reconnaissance-pull, the commander uses the products of the IPB process in an interactive and iterative way. He obtains combat information from his reconnaissance assets to determine a preferred COA for the tactical situation presented by the factors of METT-TC. In reconnaissance-push, the commander uses the products of the IPB process in an interactive, but not iterative, way with combat information obtained from his reconnaissance assets in support of a previously determined COA. The time available to a commander is normally the chief reason for preferring one method over the other.

13-50.   The time required to develop a preferred COA can give the enemy enough time to recover and prepare so that an objective which could be obtained with few casualties one day will cost far more to seize the next day. There is no available model that a commander can use to determine how much is enough; that determination is part of the tactical art.


13-51.   No single reconnaissance asset can answer every intelligence requirement, and there are rarely enough reconnaissance assets to cover every requirement. The echelon staff uses as mix of reconnaissance management methods, such as cueing, mixing, redundancy, and task organizing, in an attempt to use limited assets most effectively and collect the most critical information with the fewest assets as quickly as possible,.

13-52.   Cueing is the integration of one or more types of reconnaissance or surveillance systems to provide information that directs follow-on collecting of more detailed information by another system. Cueing helps to focus limited reconnaissance assets, especially limited ground reconnaissance assets, which can rarely examine every part of a large area closely. Electronic, thermal, visual, audio, and other technical assets with wide-area surveillance capabilities, often working from aerial platforms, can quickly determine areas of enemy concentration or areas where there is no enemy presence. These assets may cue ground and air reconnaissance assets to investigate specific areas to confirm and amplify information developed by technical assets. For example, joint surveillance target attack radar system (JSTARS) and Guardrail-equipped aircraft can cover large areas and cue ground reconnaissance or UAVs once an enemy force is identified. The commander may dispatch ground reconnaissance or UAVs to verify the information and track the enemy for targeting purposes. Similarly, a ground reconnaissance asset could cue surveillance assets. The key point is to use reconnaissance assets based on their capabilities and use the complementary capabilities of other assets to verify and expand information available.

13-53.   Mixing is using two or more different assets to collect against the same intelligence requirement. Employing a mix of systems not only increases the probability of collection, but also tends to provide more complete information. For example, a JSTARS aircraft may detect and locate a moving enemy tactical force, while the G-2 analysis and control element uses organic and supporting assets to determine its identity, organizational structure, and indications of future plans. Employing a mix of systems is always desirable if the situation and available resources permit. Mixing systems can also help uncover deception attempts by revealing discrepancies in information reported by different collectors.

13-54.   Redundancy is using two or more like assets to collect against the same intelligence requirement. Based on the priority of the information requirement, the commander must decide which NAI justifies having more than one asset covering it. When more than one asset covers the same NAI, a backup is available in the event that one asset cannot reach the NAI in time, the first asset suffers mechanical failure, or the enemy detects and engages the first asset. Redundancy also improves the chances that the required information will be collected.

13-55.   To increase the effectiveness and survivability of a reconnaissance asset, the commander may task organize it by placing additional assets under the control of the unit. For example, to conduct an area reconnaissance of possible river crossing sites at extended distances from a division's current location, a ground reconnaissance troop of the division cavalry squadron could be task-organized with a COLT, a signal retransmission element, an engineer reconnaissance element, and a mechanized infantry platoon. The engineers would provide additional technical information on proposed crossing sites; the signal retransmission elements would allow the reconnaissance troop's combat net radios to reach the division tactical command post. The COLT provides additional observation, lazing, and fire coordination capabilities. Last, the infantry platoon would provide additional protection for the reconnaissance troop.


13-56.   Sustaining reconnaissance assets before, during, and after their commitment is a vital part of maintaining the commander's capability to conduct reconnaissance. Because the way that a commander deploys his reconnaissance assets in a given situation depends on the factors of METT-TC, the methods he employs to sustain those assets are equally situationally dependent. He must address them as part of the planning process for each reconnaissance operation.

13-57.   Reconnaissance elements frequently operate in locations distant from their organic sustaining base. In this event, reconnaissance elements must either carry a large enough basic load or be task organized with those assets necessary to ensure their sustainment until they can be relieved. With either COA, casualty evacuation remains a problem. An alternative solution would be to plan and coordinate their sustainment from units near their operating locations.


13-58.   Reconnaissance can be characterized as either stealthy or aggressive. Depending on how they are employed, scout helicopters and other aerial platforms, as well as mounted and dismounted ground reconnaissance, can be characterized as either stealthy or aggressive.

13-59.   A key factor in reconnaissance execution is the time available to conduct the reconnaissance mission. The commander must recognize that he accepts increased risk to both the reconnaissance element and the main body when he accelerates the pace of reconnaissance. This risk can be somewhat offset by employing air reconnaissance and technical means to cover open terrain or areas of lower threat.

13-60.   Aggressive reconnaissance is characterized by the speed and manner in which the reconnaissance force develops the situation once it makes contact with an enemy force. A unit conducting aggressive reconnaissance uses both direct- and indirect-fire systems and movement to rapidly develop the situation. Firepower, aggressive exploitation of actions on contact, operations security, and training are required for the unit to survive and accomplish its mission when conducting aggressive reconnaissance. Mounted reconnaissance is normally characterized as aggressive.

13-61.   Stealthy reconnaissance emphasizes avoiding detection and engagement by the enemy. It is more time consuming than aggressive reconnaissance. Stealthy reconnaissance takes maximum advantage of covered and concealed terrain and the reduced battlefield signatures associated with systems that typically conduct stealthy reconnaissance, such as dismounted scouts. However, stealth cannot be guaranteed. As a result, units attempting to conduct stealthy reconnaissance must also be drilled to react correctly once the enemy makes contact, and they must have immediate access to supporting fires.

13-62.   The commander considers the factors of METT-TC to determine whether to conduct mounted or dismounted reconnaissance. Conditions that may result in a decision to conduct mounted or aerial reconnaissance include—

  • Time is limited.

  • Detailed reconnaissance is not required.

  • Air units are available to perform coordinated reconnaissance with the ground assets.

  • The IPB process has provided detailed information on the enemy.

  • Terrain is relatively open.

  • Environmental conditions permit this type of reconnaissance. Deep snow and muddy terrain greatly hinder mounted reconnaissance.

  • Dismounted reconnaissance cannot complete the mission within existing time constraints, while mounted reconnaissance can.

13-63.   The following conditions may result in the commander directing a dismounted reconnaissance effort:

  • Time is available.

  • Detailed reconnaissance is required.

  • Stealth is required.

  • The IPB process indicates close proximity to enemy positions.

  • The reconnaissance force encounters danger areas.

  • Restrictive terrain limits the effectiveness of mounted reconnaissance.

FM 3-21.92 describes dismounted patrolling in detail.

13-64.   Typically, air reconnaissance operates in concert with ground reconnaissance units. (Friendly ground forces in an area offer additional security to aircrews.) Aviation units can insert surveillance teams at observation posts. Aircraft can observe and provide security on station for extended times using rotation techniques if they have detailed requirements in advance. Dismounting an aircrew member to evaluate bridges, fords, or crossing sights is a last alternative because of the danger to the aircrew and the aircraft. Before resorting to this, the aircrew uses the sophisticated systems on the aircraft to avoid risk and to avoid drawing attention to the area of interest.

13-65.   Reconnaissance by fire is a technique in which a unit fires on a suspected enemy position to cause the enemy to disclose his presence by movement or return fire. This technique is appropriate when time is critical and stealthy maneuver to further develop the situation is not possible. The fires may be either direct, indirect, or a combination. The advantage of indirect fire is that it does not give away friendly locations and usually causes the enemy to displace from the impact area. However, reconnaissance by fire may not cause a seasoned or prepared enemy force to react. Reconnaissance by fire is always characterized as aggressive.

13-66.   Smoke and battlefield obscuration, fog, rain, and snow all result in reduced visibility. Generally, reconnaissance during limited-visibility conditions takes more time. However, these conditions provide for better stealth and enhance the survivability of reconnaissance assets. A commander frequently employs dismounted reconnaissance patrols at night. These patrols use light amplification and thermal observation devices, electronic surveillance devices, and surveillance radars to compensate for reduced visibility conditions.

13-67.   In limited visibility, mounted reconnaissance tends to focus on road networks. The enemy can detect engine and track movement noises of friendly mounted reconnaissance elements at considerable distances at night, which makes them susceptible to ambush. Strict sound and light discipline, along with masking sounds, such as artillery fires, helps a mounted reconnaissance force from being compromised or ambushed.

13-68.   High winds, extreme temperature, and loose topsoil or sand may adversely affect aerial reconnaissance. Air reconnaissance units plan their missions in much the same way as ground units. They use the same type of operations graphics and consider the same critical tasks. The air reconnaissance commander organizes his assets to accomplish his mission by considering the same IPB aspects as those associated with ground forces. He focuses on air hazards to navigation and anticipated enemy air defense capabilities. (The effects or weather and atmosphere conditions are discussed in FM 2-01.3.)


13-69.   When any small unit is employed continuously for an extensive period of time, it can become ineffective. When this occurs, restoring the unit to an acceptable level of effectiveness may require either recuperation or reconstitution. Recuperation-a short break for rest, resupply, and maintenance-is often sufficient to return the unit to the desired degree of combat effectiveness. Leaders in reconnaissance units probably need more rest than their subordinates. If the recuperation period is extended, it can also be used to conduct refresher training, new equipment training, or any required specialized training for the next mission.

13-70.   Units and systems performing reconnaissance are vulnerable to detection, engagement, and destruction by the enemy. When this occurs and the unit can no longer perform its primary mission, the commander must determine whether to reconstitute, by either regenerating or reorganizing the unit. (See FM 4-100.9 for additional information concerning reconstitution.)

13-71.   Regenerating a unit requires significant resources. The organization two echelons above the unit being regenerated conducts the procedure. For example, a battalion task force can regenerate its scout platoon. In the regeneration process, the battalion could use a combination of weapon system replacement operations, battle damage assessment and repair, normal replacement operations, and medical returnees to provide the needed resources. These resources, combined with training, could be used to regenerate the scout platoon. Alternatively, the commander could designate one of his line platoons as the task force's new scouts. This approach has significant training implications and requires adjustments to the line platoon's table of organization and equipment.

13-72.   A unit commander can reorganize his unit with the approval of the next higher commander. For example, an armored cavalry troop commander could reorganize his two scout and two tank platoons into three platoons containing a mix of scouts and tanks. This approach to reconstitution also requires training time and other equipment resources to ensure the combat effectiveness of the resulting composite organization.



Christos military and intelligence corner

Military and intelligence history mostly dealing with World War II.


Monday, October 15, 2012


German counterintelligence operations in occupied France

After the fall of France in the summer of 1940 the country had to endure four long years of occupation under the German forces. During that period countless resistance groups were organized both by the French and by foreign powers.

The agencies that organized resistance groups were the British SIS and SOE, the intelligence service of the Free French and the Polish intelligence service. In addition there were the homegrown resistance groups plus the intelligence service of the Vichy regime.

Relations between these groups were complicated. For example the Vichy intelligence service helped the resistance but was at odds with the De Gaule movement, the communists distrusted the right-wingers and there was little cooperation between the British SOE and SIS.

The German agencies whose task it was to monitor and destroy the Resistance were also numerous. There was the military police Geheime Feldpolizei, the military intelligence service Abwehr, the Security Services Sicherheitsdienst/Gestapo and the Radio Defense departments of the Armed Forces and the Police.

Initially the resistance was made up of a few isolated groups organized by patriotic individuals. They did not take many security precautions and as a result their groups were easily infiltrated by agents. As time went on the groups that took their place were better organized and had regular contact with London via radio. They also received weapons, money and explosives from airdrops.  In some cases these weapons were used for acts of sabotage but the majority were stored away for use on the day of the Allied invasion.

Considering the anti-German attitude of the French population and the geographical proximity of Britain one would expect that setting up resistance groups and organizing them would not be hard. Unfortunately for the Allies this was not so. The Germans were hampered by their separate security agencies but they were able to identify, monitor and destroy countless resistance groups. In many cases they managed to gain control of whole groups by maneuvering their agents into top positions.

They also engaged in radio-games with the British. After capturing radio operators and their cipher material they sent misleading reports to London and got the British to reveal parts of their networks or drop supplies and agents into their hands.

In 1941-42 their main successes were the liquidation of the INTERALLIÉ, AUTOGIRO, CARTE networks and the arrest of key members of ALLIANCE. In August ’42 they carried out an extensive radio finding operation in Vichy France called operation ‘Donar’. Depending on the source they neutralized 6 or 12 enemy transmitters.

In 1943 the Germans achieved their greatest successes against the Resistance.  They compromised the SPINDLE group and arrested Roger Frager, Peter Churchill and Odette Sansom. They captured the leadership of the ORA-Organisation de résistance de l'arméeand many of their members. They also captured general Delestraint, head of the Armée secrète. When Resistance leaders met in order to unify their groups the house was raided by the Germans thus capturing many top level people, including prefect Jean Moulin. In the summer of ‘43 the SOE’s largest network in France PHYSICIAN/PROSPER was liquidated. Also in ’43 the ARCHDEACON network was thoroughly compromised and many groups of the Gaullist MITHRIDATE organization were destroyed.

Despite all their efforts by 1944 the Resistance had grown exponentially. With Germany’s defeat in sight everyone was willing to help the resistance groups and even German agents crossed over and attacked their former masters, giving rise to the term ‘resistant du 44’.

Still their successes against so many different organizations deserve to be recognized. Why were the Germans so successful in counterintelligence work?

1). Sabotage vs espionage operations

The mission of an intelligence agency is to keep its existence secret and collect information. For these operations only a small number of highly trained operatives are needed. On the other hand an organization tasked with sabotage will need arms shipments, arms depots and lots of agents to move arms and explosives around and take part in attacks. Obviously such activity cannot remain in the dark as attacks on infrastructure and personnel will attract the attention of enemy security services.

In essence this was the problem of SOE (Special Operations Executive). Unlike SIS that always kept a low profile SOE was created to attack the German occupation authorities and destroy critical infrastructure in occupied countries. This meant that its networks quickly became a target for the Germans.

2). Antagonism between the Allies

Relations between the different Allied agencies were antagonistic. SIS was an established organization and had no reason to support the upstart SOE. The Free French distrusted the British and were in turn distrusted by them. Vichy authorities were willing to turn a blind eye to British operations but they hated De Gaulle’s people.

The effects of having many different organizations operating in France meant that the Resistance was fragmented.

3). Poor security procedures

Security was not a high priority in the resistance groups. The resistance people frequented the same areas (bars/cafes/restaurants) thus making it easy for the Germans to keep them under observation. Instead of trying to keep their identities secret some people openly boasted of being resistance members or showed of their weapons in night clubs. The size of the resistance groups was also a security problem. With hundreds of members it was impossible to keep double agents out.

One of the worst errors was the use of the same radio operator by several resistance groups. Each group had one or more radio teams but these were often arrested and when that happened there was no other means of communication with London. The proper procedure would be to wait for a new operator to arrive but what actually happened was that another network was asked to transmit their messages. Since there were many networks but few radio operators this meant that the ones under German control could compromise several resistance groups.

Serious security errors were also committed by the British. Radio operators were given a series of security checks to insert into their messages so they could inform on whether they were under German control. In many cases these checks were disregarded by SOE as mistakes of the operator. This is not as ridiculous as it sounds. Messages from the field had many errors and in a lot of cases were either completely unreadable or had to be solved cryptanalytically. Under these circumstances it was not possible to determine if the security checks were inserted correctly or were mistakes.

4). Psychological manipulation

The German security services have a reputation of torturing people but the reality is that in most cases they relied on psychological manipulation and not physical violence. Although prisoners were sometimes maltreated (especially by the SD) usually confessions were gotten out of them by showing them how much was already known about their networks.

Many people were enticed to work for the Germans in exchange for protection for themselves and their families.

For high level operatives a deal was proposed. If they gave up the names and addresses of the members of their entire network the Germans would guarantee that their people would not be executed but only imprisoned. Many resistance leaders took this deal.

5). Abwehr vs Sicherheitsdienst

For the Germans the existence of military and political security services was both a hindrance and an asset.

On the one hand the military intelligence service Abwehr often clashed with the political Security services (Sicherheitsdienst/Gestapo). There was undoubtedly duplication of effort and wasted manpower. In some cases one agency would arrest people who worked for the other thus compromising secret operations.

On the other hand each agency had a reputation that attracted specific kinds of people. The Abwehr was lead by military officers who had a code of honor and did not like torture. They tried to recruit agents by mutually beneficial deals. For example a resistance member serving a long sentence would be given the offer to be released in exchange for becoming a spy. In other cases someone could save a family member who was sentenced to death by revealing information about the resistance. These deals were honored by the Abwehr.

The Sicherheitsdienst did not have many moral scruples. What mattered for them were results. For that reason they were prepared to use torture, extortion and bribes. People who wanted to make money could offer their services and act as provocateurs. Criminal elements like the notorious Bony-Lafont gang worked for the SD.

An interesting trick by the Abwehr was to use the SD as a boogeyman. Prisoners knew that the Abwehr usually treated prisoners with respect. On the other hand the SD had a reputation for torture. If a difficult prisoner refused to give any information then the Abwehr interrogator would tell him ‘well there’s nothing more I can do for you, we’ll have to send you to the SD’. This got many men talking.

6). Skillful use of double agents

The Germans successfully inserted double agents in the resistance groups. Some of their most successful agents were:

The Cat

Mathilde Carré alias ‘La Chatte’ was a founding member of INTERALLIÉ. It seems that she was romantically attached to Roman Czerniawski. In November 1941 she was arrested and revealed the secrets of INTERALLIÉ to the Germans. She became a double agent for Bleicher and compromised many members of the resistance. She also compromised Pierre de Vomécourt’s AUTOGIRO network when she convinced him to use her radio operator for his messages.

Vomécourt suspected her of being a spy and when they travelled to London together in February 1942 he had her arrested. She spent the rest of the war in jail.


Roger Bardet

Bardet was a member of CARTE. In 1943 he was tricked by Bleicher to come to Paris with him and visit his chief Marsac who was in prison. Bardet was then arrested and after spending time in jail offered to work for the Germans. He eventually became Henri Fragers second in command in the DONKEYMAN network. In 1944 he betrayed Frager and provided Bleicher with the BBC’s pre-invasion ‘Action’ messages. With the German defeat in sight he changed sides once more and attacked the Germans. He was arrested at the end of the war.

The mystery of ‘Gilbert’

Henry Dericourt alias ‘Gilbert’ was a civilian pilot who served with the French AF in the Battle of France.  In 1943 he was approached by SOE and given the task to smuggle agents into France by plane. Dericourt carried out this mission with great success but eventually came under suspicion of passing information to the Germans and for that reason he was recalled to London in February 1944. According to his postwar interrogation to the French authorities he did give some information to the Germans. The truth is that Dericourt cooperated with Sturmbahnfuehrer Boemelburg in exchange for protection for himself, his family and his agents. That is probably the reason for his excellent flying record (43 people flown in and 67 flown out of France without problems).

It seems that through him the Germans were able to make copies of the documents being transported from France to London. These documents were later shown to captured agents thus breaking their confidence in the security of their organization.

Was ‘Gilbert’ a traitor? He did give information to the Germans but in his trial in 1948 Boddington head of the SOE France section came to his defense.

Dericourt took his secrets to the grave as he died in a plane accident in 1962.

7). Insecure communications

A serious problem for the Allied spy networks were the limited means of communication between them and London. Mail could be transported by plane or by ship across the Channel. In addition there was a southern route into Spain. The Germans occasionally captured couriers and their messages. They also had Dericourt as a source of mail.

The only means of rapid communications were by radio but this was a double edged sword. Radio transmissions could be also picked up by the Germans and if they could solve the codes then they could identify the agents.

Intelligence agencies have a reason to favor the use of unbreakable codes such as the one time pad. A military message is usually not important on its own. A decrypted message of a resistance group however could contain names and addresses which were enough to allow the Germans to arrest people and unravel whole groups.

Unfortunately for the Allies the code systems used by SOE and the Poles for much of the war were theoretically and practically vulnerable to cryptanalysis.

The crypto-systems used by SOE were initially substitution systems employing a poem as a ‘key’ or a passage from a book as a cipher. These were insecure and Leo Marks head of the SOE cipher department had them changed to OTP.

The Polish secret service in France used in 1943/44 a stencil cipher that was much more secure than the SOE substitution systems but it too succumbed to Germans analysis.

Radio Defence Corps and Referat Vauck

The German agencies responsible for monitoring illicit radio transmissions were the Radio Defence Corps of the Armed Forces High Command – OKW Funkabwehr and the similar department of the regular police – Ordnungspolizei. Both agencies operated in France but they were assigned different areas. 

These agencies not only monitored the agents’ traffic but in many cases they were able to locate the site of transmissions through D/F (direction finding). In such cases the radio center was raided and often the operator and his cipher material were captured.

This cipher material was then used by Dr Vaucks agents section to identify the crypto-systems, solve them and decode the traffic. This section, headed by Dr Wilhelm Vauck, was originally part of the Army’s signal intelligence agency OKH/In 7/VI but worked closely with the Radio Defense Corps. It was established in 1942 and by the end of the year two-man teams were detached to regional Aussenstellen in Paris, Marseilles, Lyons, Prague, Oslo, Vienna, Brussels. In late 1943 the entire department was moved to the OKW Funkabwehr.

According to postwar reports they usually had success with a system if it had been physically compromised. However in some cases it was possible to solve enemy systems cryptanalytically. Mettig, head of the Army’s signal intelligence agency in 1941-43 says in TICOM I-115 that

a special weakness of Allied agents’ ciphers was the use of books for enciphering. Usually only a minor inroad or other clue was required to reproduce a piece of the cipher text and conclusions could thence be drawn as to which book was used. In the case of one Allied transmission in the summer of ’42, five or six French words of a text were ascertained, leading to the conclusion that the cipher book dealt with the Spanish civil war. In view of this assumption, all French books about the Spanish civil war in the State libraries of Paris, Madrid and Lisbon were read with the object of trying in these 5-6 words. The book was found. PW always looked on a great research effort as worthwhile. The greatest weakness in using books for enciphering lay in the fact that, once a book had been compromised, an entire transmission could be broken automatically. The weakness existed even if the book in question could not be secured in the same edition or impression. It was still possible for Referat Vauck (though again only after considerable research) to find the right place in the book and to secure a fluent deciphering system by means of conversion tables.

Another weakness of Allied agent ciphers was the use of poetry. Here the verse metre was an additional help in solving the cipher text, as was done in the case of a Czech transmission in the autumn of 42/43.’

The monthly reports of Referat 12, included in the War Diary of Inspectorate 7/VI, show that in the period 1942-44 messages from spy networks in France and Belgium were continuously decoded and several ‘radiogames’ were carried out by the security services.



When the agents’ radio and the cipher material were captured then the Germans could start a radiogame. By impersonating the radio operator (or forcing him to take part in the deception) they sent and received messages and were able to deceive the British about the true state of their network. Through these operations the Germans learned of the enemy agency’s organization, plans and  personalities.

The most famous episode in this secret war was the radiogame in Holland called operation ‘Nordpol’. There the Germans were able to trick the British into believing that the Dutch resistance was very effective while in reality the whole network was under their control.

In France too they had many similar successes. For example in 1941 they captured and used in a radio game the operator of ALLIANCE and in 1943 did the same with the operator of PHYSICIAN. In the same year they gained control of ARCHDEACON and had the British parachute arms and agents into their hands.

According to TICOM I-115 before the Allied invasion they had 12 radio links under their control passing disinformation to London.

In addition the Sonderkommando Rote Kapelle (Special Detachment Red Orchestra) was able to dismantle the illicit radio network of the French Communist party and replace it with a new network under its control. The members of the resistance and the communist party working for this organization became unwitting pawns of the Germans.

8). Limits of ULTRA

The solution of German ciphers was one of the greatest successes of the Allied side. The intelligence gained from reading enemy messages played an important role in the war.

However the British were only able to intercept messages sent by radio. In Western Europe the Germans relied on the landlines. Some messages of the Abwehr and the police were sent by radio and decoded by Bletchley Park but the vast majority stayed of the air.

British intelligence in the Second World War vol5 says ‘Certain communications, of course, remained secure throughout the war. All internal communications within the Reich that went by land-line, as did those between the Asts and Abwehr HQ, and between Abwehr HQ and OKW, fell within that category.

British intelligence in the Second World War vol2 says about police ciphers: ‘In contrast to the wealth of information it provided from eastern Europe, the police traffic revealed little about conditions in France, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Norway and Greece until late in the war. This situation reflected the greater availability of land-lines and the fact that the police played a smaller part in occupation duties than they did in the east, the army taking the brunt, but it was also a consequence of the absence of widespread partisan warfare in these areas before 1944.

In addition the Enigma key of the Sicherheitsdienst/Gestapo – TGD was not broken during the war. The ‘History of Hut 6’, vol2 says ‘It never cilied so far as we know and no convincing re-encodement from any other key was ever produced’.


When the Germans occupied France in 1940 they were not ready to deal with underground resistance movements. Their personnel lacked special training and they did not have well organized intelligence networks in place. Their efforts were amateurish and initially they were helped by elementary security errors of the resistance people. In due time however members of the Abwehr and the Sicherheitsdienst were able to ‘learn on the job’ and they became very efficient at uncovering enemy groups and turning around agents.

Even though they had to operate in a country with an anti-German population they still infiltrated and destroyed many large resistance networks. In many cases they were able to gain control of their radio communications and trick the British into sending them arms and agents.

Despite all their efforts the Resistance grew like a hydra. No matter how many networks the Germans destroyed new ones grew to take their place. By 1944 everyone knew that Germany would lose the war and even their own agents started abandoning them.

In the period 1941-44 however countless German lives and critical infrastructure were saved thanks to the efficient work of the German counterintelligence agencies. Up until 1944 the Resistance was kept at a tolerable level.

The successes of the German security agencies versus French, British and Polish resistance networks in occupied France are worthy of recognition.


Overview of important groups and personalities


INTERALLIÉ network: Founded by Roman Czerniawski/’Armand’, controlled by SIS. Most of the members were displaced Poles. Compromised by Mathilde Carre.


AUTOGIRO network: Organized by Peter Vomécourt ‘Lucas’, controlled by SOE. Compromised by Mathilde Carre.


CARTE network: Organized by André Girard.  Compromised when Marsac lost the membership list in late ’42.


ALLIANCE network: Organized by Georges Loustaunau-Lacau, controlled by SIS. In 1941 their radio operator was captured by the Germans and used in a radiogame. As a resultLoustaunau-Lacau and key members of the organization were arrested in 1941 and 4 of the group’s 6 radio transmitters were captured. Despite the setback the group continued to operate.


SPINDLE network: Organized by Peter Churchill - ‘Raoul’, controlled by SOE. Compromised by Marsac.


PHYSICIAN/PROSPER network: Organized by Francis Alfred Suttill, controlled by SOE. In 1943 was the largest SOE network in France. Liquidated in summer ’43. Depending on the source 500-1.500 people were arrested.


DONKEYMAN network: Organized by Henri Frager - ‘Paul’, controlled by SOE. Compromised by Roger Bardet.


SCIENTIST: SOE network in Normandy. Compromised by the Germans.


ARCHDEACON network: SOE network compromised from the start by the Germans. Used by SFHQ-Special Forces HQ for infiltrating new teams. Resulted in at least 18 agents lost.


ORA - Organisation de résistance de l'armée : Organized by Vichy officers in early ’43, following the German occupation of Vichy France in November ’42. Leadership captured in June ’43.


Armée secrète - Gaullist resistance organization. United the groups ‘Combat’, ‘Libération’ and ‘Franc-Tireur’.


MITHRIDATE - Gaullist network. In 1943 several hundred members were arrested by theSicherheitsdienst. In late ’43 the group’s codes were compromised and the internal organization revealed. The headquarters in Paris were raided and Colonel Pierre Herbinger,head of the organization arrested in May ‘44. The group was also compromised through their collaboration with a Rote Kapelle network controlled by the Germans.


General Delestraint: Head of Gaullist network Armée secrète. Arrested in June ’43.


General Frère: Head of ORA organization. Arrested in June ’43.


Jean Moulin: Prefect of Eure-et-Loir and symbol of the resistance. Organizer of Armée secrète. Arrested in June 1943 when the Germans raided a meeting of several Resistance leaders. Was tortured by Klaus Barbie and died en route to Paris.

Emile Bollaert: Replaced Jean Moulin as General Delegate of the French Committee of National Liberation in September 1943. Was arrested in February ’44.

Pierre Brossolette: One of the major leaders of the resistance. Became a member of the Council of the Order of the Liberation. Was arrested with Emile Bollaert in February ’44.

Forest Yeo-Thomas - ‘White rabbit’: Deputy Head of SOE RF (Free French) section. Captured in March ’44 while organizing the rescue of Brossolette and Bollaert.

Roman Czerniawski - ‘Armand’: Polish officer, organizer of the INTERALLIÉ network. Arrested in November ’41. Agreed to spy for the Germans and was allowed to escape. Once he reached London he informed the British and was used to pass disinformation to the Germans.


Mathilde Carre - ‘La Chatte’: Member of INTERALLIÉ. Romantically attached to Czerniawski. Arrested in November 1941 and subsequently betrayed him and worked for the Germans. Compromised Raoul Kiffer. Convinced de Vomécourt to send messages through her radio operator (controlled by the Germans). In February ’42 she went to London with de Vomécourt but her role had been uncovered and she spent the rest of the war in jail.


Raoul Kiffer - ‘Kiki’: Member of INTERALLIÉ. Betrayed by Mathilde Carre and later became a German spy. Organized a resistance group in the Lisieux area in Normandy. The group was controlled by the Abwehr but eventually became a security risk and was liquidated by the SD.


Georges Loustaunau-Lacau: Ex military officer and right-wing political figure. Organizer of the ALLIANCE network. Arrested by the Vichy police in 1941 and handed over to the Germans along with key members of his organization.


André Girard: organizer of the CARTE network located in the South of France. His organization was fatally compromised when the Germans captured a membership list in late ’42. Was able to escape to the UK.


Andre Marsac: member of CARTE. Lost the organization’s membership roll during a train trip in November ’42. He was arrested by the Abwehr in March ‘43. Hugo Bleicher managed to convince him that he was opposed to the Nazi regime thus getting him to reveal details about the SPINDLE group. Thanks to this deception Roger Bardet, Odette Sansom and Peter Churchill were eventually arrested.


Roger Bardet: member of the CARTE group. Was lured to Paris and arrested by Bleicher. Eventually became a German spy inside the Resistance. Managed to become second in command for Henri Frager and thus compromised the DONKEYMAN network. In 1944 changed sides once more and fought against the Germans. At the end of the war arrested and tried for treason.


Peter Churchill - ‘Raoul’: SOE agent. Organizer of SPINDLE group. Arrested in April 1943 by Bleicher.


Henri Frager - ‘Paul’: Second in command of the CARTE group, then became head of the DONKEYMAN network. Suspected Dericourt of being a German spy and informed the British thus getting him recalled to London. Eventually betrayed by Bardet, he was arrested in August ’44 and executed in October.


Henri Dericourt - ‘Gilbert’: French pilot who became the SOE’s air transport officer. Successfully transported agents in and out of France but came under suspicion of working for the Germans. He was recalled to London in February 1944 and interrogated. He admitted giving information to the enemy. After the war was tried in France but acquitted thanks to the testimony of Boddington head of SOE France section.


Pierre de Vomécourt: Organizer of the AUTOGIRO network. In October and November ’41 his radio operators were arrested forcing him to use the INTERALLIÉ radio link for contacting London. Since this was under German control his own network was compromised. Visited London with Mathilde Carre in February ’42 and had her arrested. Returned to France but was himself arrested in April ’42.


Francis Alfred Suttill - ‘Prosper’: Organizer of the PHYSICIAN network (also called PROSPER) covering Paris. The whole network was destroyed in summer ’43 and Suttill arrested in June. Agreed to give information to the Germans in exchange for protection for his agents.


Gilbert Norman - ‘Archambaud’: Radio operator of the PROSPER network. Arrested in June’43. Cooperated with the Germans.


John Starr - Organizer of the ACROBAT network, controlled by SOE. Arrested July ’43. Cooperated with the Germans.


André Grandclément: Organizer of SCIENTIST. Became a German agent.


Harold Cole: British national. Originally part of the MI9 organization, helping Allied airmen escape from occupied Europe. However after his arrest in 1941 he worked for the Germans thus compromising many Allied escape routes.


Bony-Lafont gang: Ex police inspector Pierre Bony and gangster Henri Lafont organized a group that hunted down Resistance members and turned them over to the Germans. The gang were infamous for their use of torture and extortion.


German personnel


Oscar Reile - Head of Abwehr Counterintelligence in France. Operated from the luxurious Hotel Lutetia in Paris.


Karl Boemelburg - SS Sturmbahnfuehrer. Gestapo commander.


Hans Kieffer - SS Sturmbahnfuehrer. Sicherheitsdienst commander.


Klaus Barbie: Head of Gestapo Lyons. Infamous for his use of torture.


Hugo Bleicher - Initially member of the Geheime Feldpolizei. Was transferred to the Abwehr where he became an expert in recruiting double agents.


Goetz - Expert in radiogames.


Freyer - Head of the Funkabwehr’s Aussenstelle Paris in 1943/44


glFusion Wiki

Site Tools


glFusion Quickstart Guide

Welcome to the glFusion Community. glFusion is a very flexible and feature rich Content Management System (CMS) that will allow you to build and maintain an online community. glFusion contains many features, but strives to make it easy for anyone to build and maintain a site.

To assist you in creating your site, let’s get a quick overview of the features and describe how each works and interacts with the other. We’ll also introduce you to the terminology used in glFusion. Let’s get started!

Site Security

There are 2 things you should do immediately after installing a new glFusion site:

  1. Delete the public_html/admin/install/ directory - it is important that you remove the installation files as they can allow a malicious user to potentially change or modify your site.

  2. Change the Admin user's default password - you should immediately login at the Admin user and change the password to something that is secure.

Configuration Settings

There are several configuration settings you should review and tweak to meet your needs.


By default, glFusion will periodically check for new versions new versions of glFusion and any plugins you have installed, and it also sends some data with the request. Specifically, the following information is transmitted during the version check:

  • Your site URL
  • PHP Version
  • MySQL Version

This data is only used by the glFusion development team to understand how broad the install base is and what versions of PHP and MySQL are being used, it is never sold, shared, or disclosed for any purpose.

You can turn off this feature and still check for new versions, but no data will be sent or collected.

Configuration → Site → Update Checker Tab

Send Site Data - set this to your preference - true will send the site URL, PHP version and MySQL version along with the version check - false will not send any data.

Spam / Bot Prevention

There are several controls available to assist with spam / bot detection and prevention. We recommend you read the How-To article at glFusion DOT org on Fighting BOTs and spammers. This is an excellent introduction into the capabilities and features to help protect your site.

glFusion can automatically ban IP addresses under certain circumstances. For example, if a client fails the New User Registration CAPTCHA test 5 times in a 1-hour period, the IP address can be automatically banned for 24 hours. This has proven to be a very effective defense against automated bots trying to create new user accounts for spamming purposed.

See Configuration → Spam / Bot Protection and configure the controls to meet your needs.

Social Site Memberships

If you have a Facebook page, a Twitter account or another social media account for your site, you’ll want to enter your site’s username in the Site Social Follow Me page under Command & Control. This will automatically display a Follow Us block in the footer of the site.

See Command & Control → Social Integrations and configure the social integration's to meet your needs.

Home Page

You’ll see that we have created some default content to get you started and show off some of the features in glFusion. You’ll probably want to either modify it, or remove it to meet your needs. Let’s review what is there so you’ll gain a good understanding of how the home page is built.

Logo / Slogan

In the upper left corner, you’ll see your Site Name and Site Slogan. You set these values during the installation. If you want to change them, you’ll need to login as admin to your site and go into the online configuration: My Account → Command & Control → Configuration. You’ll see Site Name and Site Slogan near the top of that configuration screen.

You can also upload a custom logo that will replace the text based name. Logo management is handled by the Site Tailor Plugin. Under the Command & Control menu option, you’ll see an option called Logo, this is where you can upload your own custom logo.

You’ll see we have included some standard menus: the top Navigation Menu, the mobile friendly off canvas menu, and the right Block Navigation Menu. You can easily customize, and turn on/off, each of these menus using the built in menu editor. To edit the menus, look under the Command & Control menu option and you’ll see an option called Menu Builder. Menu Builder allows you to completely customize all the menus.

Center Content

glFusion allows plugins to place content in the center block. The default home page is made up of the following plugin center block items:

  • Top rotating graphic block – Static Page Center Block
  • Forum Summary – Forum Plugin Center Block
  • Bottom slider block – Static Page Plugin Center Block

The stories are the standard center content. Let’s take a quick look at each of the default items:

Static Pages Plugin Center Block

The Static Pages plugin allows you to create static content, but it also allows you to embed PHP code, any (x)HTML, and JavaScript. This becomes a very powerful tool that allows you to do some creative customizations to your site. We’ve included 2 examples, the top rotating graphic block, called a rotator (because it auto-rotates content), and the bottom tab sliderblock (because clicking on the tabs or the arrows slides the content to the next tab pane).

Take a look at one of these pages: Let’s go into the Static Pages Administration screen – Command & Control → Static Pages. Here you will see a list of several static pages.

Let’s take a look at the page labeled rotator by selecting the edit (the pencil icon) button. The contents of this page is PHP code, but don’t let that intimidate you! The important item we want to look at right now is just below the content, the section where Centerblock is located. By checking the Centerblock box, we’re telling glFusion we want to display this static page on the home page. There are a few options so we can specify exactly where to put it (top, bottom, after featured story, and entire page). Entire page is an interesting feature; this means we can completely replace the center content on the home page (or really any page) so no stories display.

If you want to turn this centerblock off, simply uncheck the Centerblock box and save the page.

Forum Centerblock

The included Forum plugin has the ability to display a summary of the latest forum posts as a centerblock. This feature is controlled in the Forum Configuration screen (Command & Control → Configuration → Forum). Look for the Centerblock Section a little way down the page. Here is can turn on / off displaying the centerblock, control how many posts to show, etc.


Stories are about the only content item in glFusion that is not a plugin, instead stories (or sometimes called articles) are the main content type for glFusion. Stories are associated with Topics. Topics are like containers that allow you to easily organize your stories in some sort of logical fashion. When you create a story, you have the option to define whether it will appear on the front page, or only when viewing the topic. The default content is set to show on the front page and also when viewing the topic. Look at the left navigation block called Topics and choose General News, that will only display 1 story (remember there were 2 stories on the home page). By choosing a specific topic, we’re only showing stories assigned to that topic.

glFusion refers to the right column blocks as the ‘Navigation Blocks’. The footer blocks are called the ‘Extra Blocks’.

glFusion uses the term ‘blocks’ to refer to the items on both the left and right sections of the page. You can turn on or off any block in the system. Some blocks you can edit while others are generated by glFusion and you can’t change them (although there are several configuration options that can alter what they show or how they look).

Standard system generated blocks include the following blocks; Topics, My Account, Events, Who’s Online, and What’s New. Each of these are dynamic, meaning their contents will change depending on various factors. For example, add a new story, and it will appear in the What’s New block, but after 2 weeks it will remove itself from displaying in the block.

Plugins can also publish blocks. A good example is the Events Block, it is published by the Calendar plugin to show upcoming events.

Unlike the center column content, blocks have a single interface to turn on / off, create, and edit blocks. Command & Control → Blocks. From this administration screen you can easily manage all aspects of the blocks. Blocks can also contain pure HTML. A good example is the Translations block. This is nothing more than simple HTML typed into the block editor.


This was a very quick overview of the glFusion default install. There is a ton of information in the glFusion Wiki here at, we recommend you browse through it. We also have a very active and informative discussion forum where you can ask questions. Again, we welcome you to the glFusion community!

glfusion/quickstart.txt · Last modified: 2016/07/16 19:39 (external edit)