Berlin Sqn SOPs / tactics in the urban environment.

Discussion in 'Officers' started by Wildstabinthedark, Jun 22, 2012.

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  1. One for all the cold warriors on here! I'm after the name and location of any publications on the above. Plenty was written but doesn't appear to have made its way onto the Interweb, seemingly becoming lost. I'm trying to get the detail on armour in urban ops. Plenty on stuff on the net but either foreign or COIN orientated.

    Any help appreciated!
  2. Not sure about the Berlin stuff specifically, but there used to be quite a lot of stuff on FIBUA in the infantry section of the AEBB. I think that some or all of this has been pulled, post 2003, in an attempt to take into account the lessons from TELIC and dispense with the Stalingrad mentality. Sadly, like in so many other cases, the RAC failed to produce as much tactical doctrine as the infantry and what it did provide was the pretty low grade tactical doctrine notes. For the up to date stuff, speak to SO2 Manoeuvre at HQ DRAC/DCbt. If you manage to track down the Berlin stuff, I'd be very interested in getting a look.
  3. I woulda been interested in seeing it, when I was serving there.

    We didn't actually have doctrine until 1989, (when the first edition of British Military Doctrine was published, drafted, IIRC under the leadership of this bloke, when he was Dep Comd Staff College)

    Tactics in Berlin (1981-83) were, as was the norm in our army of the time, "the opinion of the senior officer present" as we used to say.

    Various flavours of the month came and went, not least when Farrar-the-Para junior, Major Dair Farrar-Hockley (of Goose Green 'fame' and a former Berlin Bde COS a year or so before we arrived IIRC) published in BAR an analysis that used the Arnhem fighting to 'prove' that the best way to defend in a built-up area was achieved by constant aggressive raids against the attacking force, rather than by sitting in cellars waiting for the Sovs to bring up the big guns and use them in the direct fire mode.

    Doubt you'll find much documented, apart from the FIBUA tactics chapters in the manuals of the time.
  4. The CO of 1 KORBR in the early 80s, Ray, um, SNU, wrote something of a magnum opus on FISCH based on what looked( from a safe distance) like pretty sporty training in Ruhleben Fighting City. I wasn't too interested, my GDP was clutching an SLR on top of a BFO hill decorated with antennae and dishes. My guess was that I was pretty much toast if the balloon went up.
  5. That'd be the bloke who dressed his entire Bn in KORBR logo-ed running kit, and entered every one of them in the Berlin 13km run, promising a bottle of champagne for every man under 40 who clocked a faster time than him, and a case of the stuff for any over-40.

    He was chuffed to bits when that promise cost him a f#ckin' fortune on the day. QM earned the case, IIRC.

    Mind you, I don't think - despite a witch hunt that would've not have shamed Judge Jefferies - he ever did find out the name of a single one of the dozens KORBR troops who were spotted using public transport when he thought they were hammering around the cobbled streets on their toes, a fact that was only revealed to him after he'd proudly splurged the money. He stopped bragging about it, tho'

    Humourless cnut. Pride comes before a fall, an' all that. :eye:
  6. I think the SOP of the Berlin based units was to 'be overrun in not more than 2 hours, after simultaneous advances from 6400mils'.

    I remember being issued my first 'Training and Doctrine News' magazine... it was the first issue. Somebody obviously didn't know what it was, and EVERY bloke in the Sqn got a copy issued by the SQMS.

    Brilliant read for a young Siggy!
  7. Sounds just like the bloke. Not loved among his peers in the Brigade, one suspected.
  8. It rubbed off on his men.

    At the Bde inter-platoon competition, my lot would cheer the Royal Irish to the rafters as they came through the assault course at the very end, and they would reciprocate. KORBR would stand aloof, silent, with their hands in their pockets. Obviously, we and the Irish would reciprocate their gesture.

    Then there was the matter of the KORBR water bowser during that event. As it began to run a bit low on the 2nd (?) day, its contents began to look and taste a bit brackish. So they opened it up for a look-see.

    Floating insode, a dorty great Richard the Third, believed to be a gift from the R Irish.

    I think that prolly tells you everything you need to know.

    IIRC CO's surname was Pett, but I dunno how to check. Wound up as a 1*, I think.
  9. I'll post whatever I find. Recent (10yrs) stuff is all very big hands, small map and seems to rely on the en having no decent AT or AH. I'm looking for the down in weeds stuff of armour working with inf. Taking corners etc
  10. Assuming that your interest lies in contemporary and future FIBUA operations, you must also consider the likely use of enhanced blast (thermobaric) weapons. These were probably not really considered in the Berlin era, but will be a real game changer in future FIBUA operations.

    What are you working on? (PM if required, I may be able to assist with some contemporary stuff).
  11. PM'd. Grateful for anything you've got.
  12. Actually that is good a suggestion as any when you consider how the Soviets operated in Berlin in 1945 ie bring up the biggest effin' gun or Katyusha you can find (a 203mm SP gun was considered useful) and batter the building with direct fire until:

    a. the defenders are dead or give up
    b. the defenders are sufficiently suppressed to allow your assault group (see Chuikov's tactics from Stalingrad) to close in
    C. the target building falls down and buries the occupants



  13. Hmmm. The Berlin Sqn I'm referring to is the British one from the 1980s not the Nazis.....

    Oh and you forgot option D - turn the place into a rubblised en snipers dream full of booby traps that will take months to clear (whilst the worlds media film what you've done).
  14. Mebbe - but at that time, Kershaw hadn't opened up the Wehrmacht Archive and published It Never Snows In September when Daddy's boy wrote his piece.

    Whyzat matter?

    'Cos Kershaw shows that the enemy the Paras fought in Arnhem (which was the lowest priority of the 3 bridges, from the Hun PoV) were not so much 'crack troops' as bits'n'bobs flung together as and when they became available - trainee officer Bn that hoofed it all the way from Bielefeld, is one example, and (a) not only did they have limited heavy weapons, (b) they had limited experience of operating together, let alone in an urban setting.

    Whatever the shortcomings of Sov Tac Doctrine, there were lots of them, and they had lots of big weapons, and they worked a lot together.

    Laxative thoughts, trust me.

    I was going out in style, tho': had me a CP planned in the basement of a Charlottenburg night-club/knocking shop mit bad . . . .