Version 1 / 4min read / Updated Tue 25 Feb 2020 / 158 views
- Make an effort to not run over them. They really don't appreciate it.
- Be mindful of overpressure dangers to the infantry, don't fire the main gun of a tank when in close proximity of infantry unless absolutely necessary.
- Let the infantry lead in close terrain. An anti-armor ambush will wait for vehicles to present themselves before firing.
- If infantry are leading, they will have an opportunity to spot the hidden ambush elements before the armor comes into view, since the ambushing elements will typically be waiting to fire.
- If necessary, the armored vehicle commander can dismount to talk directly with the supporting infantry. Do so in cover, of course. This can be useful for 'terrain familiarization' discussions.
Armor as Overwatch
One of the defining attributes of armor when in support of infantry is the ability for it to stand off from the battle and deliver accurate fires from beyond the effective range of the enemy. This can be brought to bear with infantry by providing overwatch of infantry elements as they move to contact. An armored vehicle can suppress the objective with machinegun fire, take out fortified positions with cannon fire, and provide immediate accurate fire upon any threats that might emerge to oppose the infantry. This allows for the infantry to rapidly move up to the enemy positions with the minimum of risk.
Having an armored vehicle many hundreds of meters away from suspected enemy positions also helps to lessen the likelihood of enemy anti-tank gunners being able to engage the armor. This comes most into play with unguided anti-tank rockets like the RPG-42; guided weapons tend to have much longer effective engagement ranges and are not as easily defeated by range. In short, armor is much more effective against infantry at a distance than infantry are against armor at a distance. Take advantage of this at all times, and especially when providing support to dismounted infantry elements.
An Panther provides overwatch to the infantry it had transported into battle
Breaching with Armor
Breaching a wall with the help of an armored vehicle is a good way to surprise defending enemy forces and give your infantry a fighting chance. Typical enemy defenses focus on natural "choke points" such as a central entry to a compound that is otherwise walled off. Breaching a wall in an unexpected place and attacking through the breach is an excellent way to catch the enemy off guard and destroy them before they can shift their defenses.
The process for breaching with any armored vehicle is fairly simple.
- Assess the situation, decide on a breach location. Be on the lookout for mines, satchel charges, IEDs, or any other devices that might be in place to protect against the possibility of a breach at the location chosen.
Once the breach point is finalized, the breach vehicle proceeds towards it at full-speed and smashes a hole in it. When about to impact the obstacle, the breach vehicle fires smoke dischargers if available. This will mask it upon breaching and provide concealment to the infantry.
After creating the hole, the vehicle immediately reverses out of the breach point to clear a way for the infantry. The reasoning behind having the breach vehicle withdraw after creating the breach versus charging into the unknown is simply that it increases the survivability of said vehicle. While a tank might be able to drive through the breach point, plant itself on the other side, and obliterate everything that opposes it, lighter infantry fighting vehicles will end up being disabled or outright destroyed by things like AT-4s, RPGs, and other light anti-tank weapons. It's a safer bet to simply have the infantry secure the area before bringing light armor in.
Infantry proceed in from either side of the breach and assault through it while the breach vehicle provides overwatch.
Notes about Ballistic Breaching
Bear in mind that walls can also be breached with cannon and machinegun fire. HEAT rounds from tanks will flatten walls, while a box of .50cal bullets will crumple some as well. Note too that "prepping" a breach point with .50cal rounds from an APC can soften up a wall and make it easier to breach. When breaching a wall from a stand-off location via cannon or machinegun fire, the breach vehicle simply ensures that no friendly forces are within a danger radius of the breach point. Once that is confirmed, they direct fire onto the breach until it opens, at which point they shift fire to allow the infantry to storm in.
An AMV knocking down a wall via 40mm cannon rounds in order to create a new route for infantry
UNITAF Standard Operating procedures (SOP) are adapted primarly from US Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). Our written and audio procedures are a combination of the following primary source materials, as well as our own learnings, modifications and adaptations:
- US Army Techniques Publication, Infantry Platoon and Squad (ATP 3-21.8)
- Soldier’s Manual of Common Tasks Warrior Leader Skills Level 2, 3, and 4 (STP 21-24-SMCT)
- The Warrior Ethos and Soldier Combat Skills (FM 3-21.75 / FM 21-75)
- Leadership Development (FM 6-22)
- Dyslexi's Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures for Arma 3 (TTP3)