FIBUA Tactics

Discussion in 'Infantry' started by shemulie, Dec 4, 2006.

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  1. I, as many of you, have probably been thrown through the FIBUA training, grappeling hooks, ladders n all. As useful as it may have been in the battle of Stalingrad it doesn't exactly seem practical for most of the areas of operation we see ourselves faced with. Certainly there never seems a heave emphasis on the training and that there is is never very thorough.

    I still see 2 men taking rooms with a grenade in every room and hozing the place down afterwards, not clearing corners and not havign all arcs covered. Hardly practical in a large urban area or one with civilians still present. Unlike most of our doctrine the tactics never seem very fluid or thought out. I am on my way to Afghan and still the lads seem to be applying this there.

    What sort of room clearing drill where taught for NI? Surley we learnt a lot there?

    It almost pains me to say it (and many of my buddies over there will be looking really smug right now) but I think we can learn something from our American counterparts. They dropped the drill we used and have evolved them to the point that now they use adaptations of the 4 man stacks to clear rooms, with additional teams to breach the doors and pull security. Doctrine lifted from the SWAT teams. I trained with them on it and it works very fast and fluidly with all angles covered and a lot less confusion.
  2. I did FIBUA (OBUA now or is it OUA now?) in Gib. I thought the training was brilliant and aimed towards some of my lot going out to Afghanistan. We did house/room clearing and tunnel/tunnel & building/room clearing in pitch black. All of these things were very fluid and effective and looked like it would work well for the operations at the moment as it was being trained to and/or practiced by "other" units before they went out to Afghanistan.
    Dark, hot, noisy, exhausting and great. Guys in Gib Reg were great.
  3. We're taught not to just throw grenades around now. Most buildings in the sandy places can't handle it. After the first breaching explosion you shouldn't need them. As for hosing the rooms, thats old hat, only shoot if you need to, but be very ready to.

    We do a fair bit in my unit, and we have some good instructers, which helps. Most of the stuff in the pam is a bit out of date, but you don't have to follow it slaveishly.
  4. I did the NATO FIBUA Instr. Cse at the School of Infantile several years pre-Iraq, and the emphasis even then was always on “Yes, you will be doing high intensity warfighting, but be prepared to conduct the full spectrum of OBUA”. There was some especially good input to tactics at sub-unit up from the USMC students, who were really into the 3-block concept.

    Borrowing tactics from SWAT is fine in those types of scenarios, but SWAT do not operate in a high-intensity environment, so you need to be able to escalate as appropriate. In particular, the low level tactics of sending 4 guys rushing into a room which the enemy has had time to do some basic preparation proved even with ISAWES to multiply the casualty rates immensely. Even with body armour, I can well imagine the havoc caused to such a stack from a burst of close range high-velocity fire.

    Having said that, our doctrine needs an overhaul, especially at the lowest levels – coloured flags in this day and age, I ask you! Our emphasis on heavy explosive charges to gain entry seems more suited to northwest European building techniques. And don’t get me started on the massive-upper-body strength methods favoured by gym-queens and thrusting COs everywhere. Is it really such a good idea to have troops dangling from ropes outside third floor windows when the enemy have mutual support? Not unless you hate them, it’s not!

    The faults described by Shemulie seem more to do with poor skills & drills and can be remedied by realistic training by those who understand their subject, just like any other training issue. A bit of ruthless DS-ing helps; my personal favourite c*ck-stand was entry teams placing a heavy mousehole charge then hiding round the corner at what wouldn’t be a safe distance for Guy Fawkes’ Night. It was a bit of an unorthodox method to test your platoon’s casevac drills, but highly effective.
  5. Unless your ape like the grappeling hook is a joke .Hopefully the lessons from afganistian filter down pretty quickly .
  6. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    We certainly didnt have grenades and very rarely automatic weapons (unless out in the cuds). In good old NI if a house was occupied you surrounded it and knocked on the door. Not much use for the sandpit(s) I know but you did ask. The only time I recall ever entering without permission was on hot pursuits, unnoccupied searches or lifts!
    Unless you were under fire or had a planned op you basically had to respect private property! Rule of law old chap and all that!
    Burned into my memory of the supergrass lifts a la Robert Lean in 83 is young Ugly having tried to force entry hanging from a swinging outwards door by his leg firmly stuck through said door!
  7. Respecting property, that cant be right,i remember stripping out a certain players car in the pouring rain on the cullyville rd(think thats the spelling) and just leaving it all there seats an all,we were all soaking wet but to see the look on the players face "priceless" happy days
  8. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    Yes but if you damaged anything NIHE the housing exec just coughed up. The Unit CO/OC could get very shirty over property damage that was ragged at him by HQNI by the NIHE. Cars on the other hand. I recall an unnocuppied search of acertain taxi association which left many vehicles less than roadworthy!
    I also remember leaving people stood in the rain for ages.
  9. I thought the grappling hook was to pull suspect booby traps etc ?
  10. I'm recently back from Iraq and we did enter a few houses during contacts.

    My CSM had some SF experience and I had him teach the blokes the 4 man room clearing drill. We found it not only more thorough, but critically easier to control and quicker to employ, as the guys are already in 4 man teams, each with a JNCO.

    In a complex situation such as entering a building in down town Basrah you simply cannot do every room with a grenade and a magazine. It is simply snap decisions, guts and leadership. I understand that non-lethal kit, like stingball and stun grenades, may soon become available to normal Infantry - that should make things a bit easier.
  11. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    Those non lethal weapons may prove bad news if you lob one accidentally into a cot or someones fuel supply!
    The problem, seems to be its neither war nor assisting local plod! Typical only we can get ourselves into a situation which requires a 1000lb bomb to be dropped on an enemy position butwe have to risk life and limb as there may be civilians in the area. I think the yanks are just starting to work this one out! edited to add I meant see this prblem, I'm not sure they'll ever work out how to deal with it!
  12. I think the tactics differ a bit. The USMC did a LOT of FIBUA in Fallujah and they seemed to use the 4 man team concept as mentioned above a lot.
  13. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    They also used a lot of tanks and planes and flattened a lot of buildings. That sort of figting is Fibua full on, no questions but as for most day to day ops I suspect Rule of Law may take precedence!
  14. I get ya
  15. My bold.