THE MILITARY SURPRISE: concepts, effects, realization and types. 2nd. Part.

(CONTINUATION)

The three cavalry regiments of the brigade had a total of 27 officers, 228 N.C.O.s and 1,740 soldiers mounted on German horses. All those who could, carried sub-machine guns –either the MP-38 or MP-40- instead of the 7.92 mm K98 carbines. They were supported by 30 heavy machine guns (MG-34 on tripods) and 72 light machine guns (MG-34 with bipods). Their heavy support fire was provided by a battery of 6 light howitzers of 75 mm for each of three hippomobile regiments. As external support they would have artillery fire, either centralized or from the divisions placed in its flanks, for the attached observers and officers were accompanying it.

Resultado de imagen de carretas del país soviéticos Country wagons moving forward in a huge Russian plain…

They were also supported by an engineers company (pioneers) and a sanitary company. By means of a park of Russian country wagons, each dragged by a pair of native horses, the supplies, replacements, ammunitions, medical forces, etc. of the brigade would be carried to them. They also had a motorized supply column.

The nature, the structure of the brigade and its support were perfectly adapted to the mission and contributed to its simplicity. It even received the support of a tanks company (14 tanks) for the attack, when the reconnaissance saw the possibility for use it.

Another key aspect of the mission was intelligence, acting already before the conception of the operation. This provided the most complete knowledge of the enemy and operations zone. Intelligence was a combination of information acquired by all the units, that was continually updated. It allowed better definition of the mission, assignment of the means and units, and training preparation. It also allowed for more appropriate adjustments or changes in plans, etc.

Another indispensable factor in this extraordinary or heterodox operation was the training and trial of the mission. The brigade trained for 4 to 6 weeks before its activation, in areas similar to the future operations zone; this fulfilled the security factor.

The training with tanks was not done, because its employment was not foreseen. And one of the problems that arose during the operation was that communication between the cavalry and tanks was poor. In the thick wild forests the wireless radios did not work well and it was necessary to use the existing wire telephony. But these were not enough for adequate communications between all the small units.

Resultado de imagen de frente del este 1942

A characteristic of the training in these special missions is that that it must be as complete as possible, in agreement to its peculiarities. And a full trial, including the total foreseen time, is always necessary. For example, to verify the resistance of certain equipments and not only its good functioning, as would happen in a partial or incomplete test.

The brigade and 5th panzer division were in their departure positions 10 days before the start of the march towards the contact. The Soviets were not capable of detecting the activation of this unit, so the security factor remained fulfilled.

Immediately, the brigade, with the help of the tanks troops, carried out an intense reconnaisance of the intermediate area and the enemy positions (advanced combat troops and the forward limit of the defense). It was deduced that the tanks’ support in the attack was possible (in a narrow sector), if a necessary adaptation was effected in the tracks accessing the area. This innovation would add an important shock capacity and heavy direct fire to the assault, especially in the irruption, in the struggle for enemy fighting positions and in the interior of the defense zone (artillery, units in disorder or in retreat, transport, supplies, etc.)

The factor surprise was going to be achieved by the tactical innovation and the unexpected action in «field of action» chosen for the attack. It is important to remember that the Soviets were prepared and fortified against an attack that they knew was coming. In addition, since the beginning of the war the Soviets had shown themselves to be masters of defense and in disguising positions. Still, the Germans hoped that a strong attack on an unexpected place would dislocate the enemy’s combat capacity and means of defense. The German plan allowed no practical reaction time to the enemy.

Resultado de imagen de frente del este 1942

With this, the speed of action factor is obtained by the attacker. This allowed the Germans to overcome rapidly their principal vulnerability: the initial contact with the enemy in the decided «interface of action«, in which always can be produced unexpected setbacks in the face of potentially bigger forces, until the law of the action is imposed on the enemy.

As the mission begins, there is uncertainty or friction, due to the enormous number of individuals and units involved; mistakes, that are a function of the small failures that happen inevitably in all the human actions that comprise a mission; enemy action, until the fire supremacy and maneuver deprive him of initiative; opportunities, in the shape of favorable situations not foreseen by the Germans and which the commands of the small units must exploit in order to fulfill the mission.

To be able to act this way, the extraordinary or special troops must possess the commitment factor, which involves the acceptance and recognition of the entrusted mission, its important consequences and its real possibilities of success in these conditions.

A couple of days before the assault, the engineers were making progress through the forest boundaries with mechanical saws. They constructed a reinforced path and carpeted it with middle logs cut up “in situ” and arranged about a meter apart. This was to give sufficient firmness to a route up to the Soviet minefields which would support the tanks added to the hippomobile brigade in tactical subordination, which slowly initiated its advance a little later. The noise of the saws and the engines of the vehicles was drowned by the flight of reconnaisance planes at low level and sporadic harassment fire.

The joint assault began on July 2, 1942.

The hippomobile brigade had to cross 15 kilometers of forests and marshes to reach the Soviet positions. At its right was the 5th panzer division attacking, which acted as the normal force or mass of support for the assault. Its left flank was supported on this area of difficult ongoing, covered by weak infantry forces (about a company). Until, on the 3rd day, a German infantry division began its assault through this sector.

At 3 a.m. the tanks advanced close to the cavalry troops, taking advantage of the general artillery preparations. They were accompanied by engineers’ troops. The minefields were immediately detected and the engineers cleaned the area around the passing paths to extend its width. Suddenly, the forwards tanks and cavalry reached the limit of the Soviet position of defense in this decided «field of action» over them.

Resultado de imagen de 9º ejército alemán Rzhev Model saves the day for the 9th German Army.  Column of Soviet military prisioners.

In a single thrust they burst in, breaking the Soviets’ first lines of defense. After this, the tanks were kept in reserve, since the enemy position stretched through an unknown wooded area. That morning the cavalry managed to penetrate 6.5 kilometers inside the Soviet position.

The whole time the train of country wagons was capable of advancing supplies, replacements and munitions to the tired men.

For its part, the 5th panzer division could not advance despite its superior capacity of shock and means, and suffered heavy losses by very well camouflaged Soviet forces in depth.

Around midday, a hippomobile regiment turned to attack the principal enemy positions from the east. To reach them, it had to cross a swampy forests zone where the water was knee-high. At dusk, the brigade had control of a sector of the principal road inside the Soviet position, breaking the Soviets’ tactical cohesion and turned it untenable.

Just after midnight on the 4th, Soviet resistance was collapsing in the area of assault of the 5th panzer division and hippomobile brigade. This crossed another swampy forest area of 10 kilometers depth and emerged at the operational enemy rear. Here was a scene of chaos filled with abandoned vehicles and stroked columns and groups of troops and soldiers. Arrival of the panzer forces accelerated the decline of the 39th Soviet infantry army as an organized and effective force.

That same day the whole sector of this army collapsed and the German infantry divisions of Walter Model’s 9th army converged on its interior by all its assault sectors.

In the 11 days that the operation lasted, the Germans captured 50,000 Soviet prisoners, and around 230 tanks and 760 artillery pieces.

THE CREATION OF THE TACTICAL AND OPERATIONAL SURPRISES.

Prolegomenon.

Military surprise is more a part of the art of war and its creation, than of military science, the doctrine, its regulations and the principles or «good-doing» rules of war. Of course, its scope and instruments are taken from military science. Military science has its logic and practice oriented towards applied theory.

Military doctrine forms the framework, the structure, the heart of all development and the wisdom that military science has been developing so far. The military doctrine of each state incorporates the idiosyncracy, history and civilization of the corresponding nation. The permanent virtues and the more temporary values of the former are also reflected in its military doctrine. All this channels it in one direction and one sense.

War art has in its conception and execution the characteristics of: variability; the unusual and singular conception; the different, unexpected and novel application and the relative ingenuity (naturalness and freshness) and freedom in its facts.

Resultado de imagen de general hermann balck General Hermann Balck, one of the finest German armored tactical Command.

If we are guided mainly by military science, which the enemy also knows, the results of the war dialectic will be obtained by maintaining a superiority in men and means, marches and maneuvers. And the cost will be the attrition of means and human wear in a greater proportion, and always undue, than with the use of surprise.

Thus, a defence deployed in depth and with sufficient reserves, probably deprives us of many opportunities for effective surprise. But, almost always, acting in the microfield, as using a tactical zoom, we can apply the tactical or operational surprise, unusual and unexpected.

Development.

The surprise becomes specify and materializes in an unexpected action on the enemy by fire and/or shock. That, taking advantage of the enemy’s habitual lack of combat availability, makes him the victim of an attack that he is not in a position to successfully reject.

Obviously, the units in charge of surprise must avoid enemy’s reconnaissance, advanced combat units and security. In charge of giving the units that detached them, enough time to get the combative disposition that allows the rejection of their attacker.

But, the mental surprise must not only be unexpected for the enemy. But, in order to be able to take full advantage of its potential and effects, it must also be unusual, special, infrequent. With an unquestionable tendency to be «unusual», as never seen. This unusual character, never occurred, extraordinarily reinforces the quality of unexpected and sudden use of surprise.

Imagen relacionada Soviet  T-34 /76 tank.

We don’t always have the unusual at hand. And surprise often favors, by employing the law of action, the most mobile and even only active rival.

Then, the use and manipulation of the “appearances”, the appreciated characteristics of the events and their circumstance, will allow us to establish and develop a new tactical or operational situation. Which will be surprising and unusual for the enemy. And it will give us an unexpected victory, at the beginning of the faced dialectic situation.

A Tactical example with Operational Trascendence.

Here is an example of an extraordinary force acting as a normal force and, in so doing, completely deceiving the enemy by manipulating appearances of the events.

In January 1943, with the Soviet advance threatening Rostov, the 4th Panzer Army of colonel general Hoth moved back from its positions on the banks of the Sal and established a defensive line south of the river Manich. Passing through that area were the supply and retreat routes of the 1st Panzer Army. Routes that had been kept open, if a disaster like that of Stalingrad was to be avoid. In Stalingrad, the Sixth German Army, the Army unit more powerful of the Wehrmatch, was caught. The 4th Panzer Army was assigned to protect this bottle neck in the communications of the Armies Groups Don.

Soon the Soviets reached the confluence of the Manich and Don rivers, took control of the small city of Manutchskaya that was only 30 kilometers from the mouth of the Don on the south bank, and sent advanced detachments in this direction. On January 23, the 11th panzer division and 16th infantry division counterattacked the Soviet advance spears and pushed them back to Manutchskaya.

Then, it was vital to restore the south front of the Don and Manich and to expel the Soviets from the city. Which was one of their bridgeheads (which, with much skill, could be rapidly reinforces once constituted).

The Germans made a direct assault from the southwest on the 24th, seeking to surprise the Soviets with the operation continuity. Instead, they found that the Soviets had created an antitank front in this entry to the city. Using tanks with their hulls partly buried and distributed between the buildings, along the streets, and in other difficult to see locations.

The 11th panzer division, a crack division with a magnificent tactician as chief, quickly stopped the assault when it detected the importance of defenses.

Imagen relacionada A Panther from the 11th panzer division circa summer 1943

On the 25th, the general Hermann Balck initiated an assault on the northeast sector of the city, which the Soviets identified as a main assault, similar to the previous one and following the orthodox criterion of «not insist on unsuccessful or frontal assaults» (not profitable). For it, they moved rapidly theirs antitank means (tanks are the most mobile) to the new threatened sector.

To make credible this assault (manipulation of the appearances), at the beginning the whole divisional artillery was used in its support. It was also the more dangerous direction of assault for the Soviets. Since that part of the city was nearest to the principal bridge over the Manich and its occupation would isolate the Soviet bridgehead on the south bank. These factors constituted the «primary evidences«.

The assault on the north-east sector was probably already considered by the Soviet defense as a German probably alternative assault and, because of this, they reacted rapidly to what happened.

Infantry half-track vehicles and reconnaissance light tanks executed the principal «virtual» assault, simulating the march of mechanized vehicles, concealed by smoke curtains. And seeking more to hide them from the enemy than to protect their advance. This gave a «secondary evidence» to the credibility of the «appearances«.

When the Soviet’s determination in the new defense was estimated, which confirmed the alteration of its original deployment and the attraction made by the normal «apparent» attack. The bulk of the divisional artillery threw a powerful fire blow on a sector of the southwest zone of the town. A single battery continued to support the ongoing false principal assault.

Most of the tanks of 15th panzer regiment immediately attacked the forward limit of the defense, entering the town and advancing on its interior. To attack from the rear the new defensive Soviet deployment, especially its tanks. The mechanized German infantry then closed in behind them.

The Soviet resistance crumbled. Its infantry ran to the bridge over the Manich river. But was chased by the 61th motorists battalion.

German casualties in liquidating Manutchskaya’s stronghold were, according to its own sources, one man dead and fourteen injured men. The Soviets had between 500 and 600 casualties and 20 destroyed tanks.

I believe, it is all clear and simple. Which are the characteristics of the practical and real ways to do.

THE MILITARY SURPRISE AS ART AND HETERODOXY

Almost all the technologies, tactics and operations directed to obtaining the tactical or operational surprise over the enemy, can be benevolent considered at the edge of the regulations and existing procedure. That are practised in the different countries and groups of them or supranational alliances.

Between other reasons, to fight only according to the «book» is usually too much acquaintance and predictable. In addition, many of the general «knowledge» gathered in them are shared by different blocs and nations, even antagonistic. And it is necessary, to respect the regulations and ordinances and to look for the aim indicated by the command, as the goal to obtaining.

But the creative and decisive action must follow the one that we call the «way of the surprise«. As guide, compass, of our decisions and actions. Looking for that fleeting and juicy opportunity that arises in the development of the mutual actions between the armed rivals; those careless or vulnerable enemy weaknesses, in conditions that we can create sometimes, equally more unforeseen and unusual. To obtain our goals with more forcefulness, efficiency, elegance and rapidity. Achieving it with fewer loss of time, of men and of means. Let’s remember the basic and universal principle of the economy of the means.

Sure that following always the «book» they will be able to approach and to take to good term the common operations. But, apart from the fact that the enemy has an essentially equal doctrine and regulations, a way of fighting will be first known and then learned or dominated and, probably, up to overcome finally by the enemy. The triumphant Germans in the first period 1939-1941, with the extension of the war, allowed the knowledge and the learning of his war of combined weapon by his enemies. That finally overcame them in technologies, tactics and operations and drove them to their thunderous defeat in 1945.

And this «guide» is of special need and affection in the bureaucratized and crystallized armies. Where the unforseeable, not guilty failures, are not only a contingency to be overcame by the set. But they can be also an administrative or political weapon against the persons in charge. And where the follow-up of the «book» and the superiors orders to the letter, armour and protect the low commands of the responsibility of their acts and results.

Martin Van Creveld said that was the anteroom, before the final unworkability and prostration, of «the military organizations that were not getting up-to-date and renewing». Martin Van Creveld was expelled as lecturer, many years ago, from Israel’s Military High College.

Then, the results will be obtained increasingly at the cost of the wear and the men means and materials losses. Tending to triumph then the rival that more demographic and economic capacity has.

There arises then a corollary of this way of thinking the military thing. The zeal to avoid human falls, extended to all the modern armies or of IIIrd generation, will lead to the preventive, protective and therapeutic employment of the own heavy fire. Looking that the own forces do not have to fight at close ranges. This is called military modern technology and is highly regarded by the national armament industries. This is not more than the perversion and trick of the heavy fire. Whose functions or tasks, in increasing order of action and efficiency, are: to blind, to disturb, to neutralize or cover and to destroy the enemy in the different fighting forms and situations.

And the action over the aim will tend to the physical destruction, as guarantee of the security of the men. In the actual civil wars in Iraq and Syria, we have the examples in the exagerate and methodical bombardments on the enemies. Armed and civilians; real and suspects.

The Military surprise, looking for the enemy dislocation and shock

During his operations, the enemy deployment is conforming in the direction and with the intention that he has decided and determined, for his military echeloned means and for his logistic routes. This way, he is showing his «cards» to his rival, depending on his action tempo and he is commiting, according to those.

Our surprise can create «per se» a new «exposed flank«, another more or less critical «vulnerability» in the enemy. That he was not considering yet, that he was not waiting, nor was prepared to defend her by some of the fighting forms. That are the attack and the defense, in their varieties and combinations.

Our surprise penetrates in the enemy deployment, seeking to shock and dislocate functionally or positionally it. And, at least, to cause him losses, to occupy profitable positions for our operational development, to diminish his tempo or operational pace and to confuse, delay and disturb him in his plans and deployments. Using for it, by our part, the minimal means expense and seeking to achieve the maximum possible effect on the enemy. With which we optimize the effort of our actions, following the general principle of the economy of the available means.

When the enemy reacts, to offset and overcome the effect of our surprising action, he is adapting necessarily to our intention. And, if that one is serious, he moves away more or less from his interests and plans. With his reacting movements for the rejection and the attack to our forces, the enemy is disregarding his intention and his mission. In relation to these, the enemy is removed from them and also unbalanced. This way, a right conceived, planned and realized surprise can «prepare» the enemy for us. So, he face in disadvantage, with fewer available resources and a worse deployment, our offensive principal action. That would be already more direct, massive and orthodox.

In such a way that exist a whole range of possible effects to obtaining over the enemy with our surprising actions. That will change also according to the means destined to obtain our surprise, the conception, the preparation and the accomplishment of it and the available time, considering also the set of our operations.

THE NO “COMBAT AVAILABILITY” OF THE FORCES IN THE DEFENSE.

 

A variant exists of deficient or useless «combat availability» of a military force. And it happens when exists the «entrusted«, the «satisfaction» of the commands in the real state of alert of that one. Without assuming or to appreciate the failures in it.

The Development.

We know that the high limit of a characteristic or property is very difficult or impossible to reach. Some of them are the «total destruction» of the enemy and the absolute «public security» in a population or in a society. If you monitor the great public sites, airports, parks, they would attack a church or a mosque…There are always plenty of potential objectives and not enough security forces… But what is exigible and necessary is that the commands optimize the use of the received military resources, which always are insufficient, in the tasks at their charge. With it they will have made all the humanly possible for fulfilling them. Since the optimization of those is equivalent to his «good employment » and to everything what this involve.

The variant of the deficient «combative availability» that we treat, arises in the defense. And it has several possible origins and reasons. This way, we have the deficient organization and deployment of the security zone. That will allow in major or less measured its secret, patient and multiple penetration by enemy groups. That will not have to possess necessarily sappers’ training. Also the dominant positions near the more or less permanent and important position of the forces, must be garrisoned by advanced detachments of, at least, a squad.

The approximation routes to the forces, from certain distance, must be registered by the mortars, the artillery and/or the aircrafts of support. In some sections ambushes can be established and, in others, obstacles and barriers covered by the own fires. Other sectors can be provided with cameras and sensors. The thermal and acoustic airborne sensors can track and detect small enemy units in the different phases of their approximation march to the combat. The intelligence should facilitate trustworthy reports, with sufficient information and updated with the enemy intentions and plans in our zone and their development.

Resultado de imagen de soldados indisciplinados THEY ALSO COULD BE IRREGULARS.

In the irregular war, the enemy is in the habit of reconnoitre, at least initially and also in fluid conditions of fight, by observation. It is important to locate and eliminate these «reconnaissance positions», which will never be fixed, but alternative and ephemeral. The own patient observation is the way. And bearing in mind that, if the exigency is intense, every 30 minutes must be substituted the observer, Because he looks, but already he does not see. If additional means exist for it and as complement, it is necessary to use the patrolling against the armed or not native marauders, in the way of reconnaissances and attacks with limited aims.


Let’s remember that the correct security must prevent that our forces could be beaten by the fire of the enemy infantry weapons. Also, detecting the enemy, tactical surprises from him are avoided to those. And that the presence and/or the action of our forces in this zone, including the advanced detachments, have as a specific task, to win the sufficient time, in order that the forces that have advanced and deployed them, could reach the right «combat readiness» to reject the enemy. And for all this, the security is a irrenounceable part of our total “combat readiness”.

But, also the most experienced veteran or professional units can be «surprised» by the appearance in force of the unexpected enemy, in an assault against them. And it happens when they are entrusted or satisfy with a deficient security. That is another face, less evident and defined as such, of her not or insufficient own “combat availability«.

An Example from the Western Front in the Second World War.

On June 10 of 1,944, soon after the midnight, 2 º battalion of 29 ª division of infantry of U.S.A. was prepared to pass the night. The men had traveled approximately 25 Kms. during the last 20 hours. The executive official of the battalion, commander Maurice Clift, chose a zone formed by two meadows surrounded by hedgerows, in order that the troops were happening the night in the open. The men entered them and were left to fall down against the terraces of the hedges. So tired they were that nobody bothered to come untied the rucksacks and the personal equipment. The majority of they remained slept at once. Some few paid attention to the noise of a few engines coming closer, but they thought they were American vehicles.

They were actually German tanks and trucks belonging to 352 ª infantry division. Not known by none of two rivals, the Germans had been withdrawing and following the same route that the American battalion followed in its advance. When they stopped, the German explorers detected the North American movements in the meadows of encamped. The Germans advanced secretly and surrounded the meadows.

Suddenly, the Germans threw flares. Under the sinister light, almost as brilliant as the midday light, its assault cannons opened fire on the hedges against the Americans. Along one of the hedges, a platoon got up and was cut down by the German machine guns. Many Americans, scared and disoriented, were running across, looking for the meadows exit; the German infantries were knocking down them with its repetition fire. The shells of the German mortars were exploiting for all the zone of the meadows. The Americans were responding with a vague, jerky rifles fire, directed to the opposite hedges. Which could reach both the Germans and their own men in their strolling.

Resultado de imagen de soldados indisciplinados  WASTER SOLDIERS.

«It was terrible”, a survivor was indicating general Cota. «We had crawled more than 90 ms. out of the field, when we listened from behind, a shouting of our men. I thought that the Germans were launching a bayonet charge against them».

The commander of 2º battalion, lieutenant colonel William Warfield (ironically, camp of war), had his command post in a farm close to the highway. Warfield tried to establish a defense, but it was in vain. The officials who threw out the house towards the field, were brought down rapidly. A German shouted in English towards the command group: «Give up, give up!». «Of giving up, certainly not!», roared Warfield. He tried to lead a small group towards the meadows where his men were, but turned out to be dead immediately.

The battle extended about 20 minutes. The battalion had 150 casualties, including 50 dead, slightly more than one third of its effective. Little before dawn, a gravely injured young lieutenant who was reporting to his division commander, general Charles Gerhardt, was falling down suddenly on knees and was striking the soil with his fists. While was sobbing and was sorry that all his men were died and that he had left them to fall down.

The general Gerhardt got angry. «Without safety, shouted exalted. «Simply the battalion came to the field and threw to fall asleep».

An example of the modern counterinsurgency warfare.

The Bristish Complex Bastion in the province of Helmand.

Helmand is one of 32 provinces of Afghanistan. It spreads over 58.583 km ² at the southwest of the country and has a population around the million and half of inhabitants, of the pashtun and baluchi ethnias. The capital is Laskar Gah. In his Washer’s district, at the northwest of the capital, the Camp Bastion is installed. It is the principal military British base in Afghanistan. It can house between 20 and 30 thousand persons in all its facilities, British and American principally, depending on the Branch to which they belong and their missions, equipments and supplies. It occupies a total extension of 52 Km2, approximately 10 km per 5 km. It was designed to be the center of the logistic operations of the ISAF in Helmand. In addition, it is the major military British camp constructed outside their country after the II World War. Built by the British Engineers since the beginning of 2006, the Complex is placed in a desert zone and away from the populations and is provided with long clear sights in all directions.

The Camp is divided structurally in different «sections». Bastion 1 and 2 were first erected. Bastion 2 also contains the Camp Barber (USA) and the Camp Viking (Danish). Bastion 0 was added about 2010 and it houses the facilities of the external contractors. The Bastion 3 is used for the specific training of counterinsurgency. The Complex also includes Camp Leatherneck (of the USMC) and Camp Shorabak, of the National Afghan Army. Camp Bastion’s airport, which possesses two landing strips, attends more than 600 aircraft flights every day, in operations of combat, logistic and medicals. In the attached heliport are deployed the Westland WAH-6 Apache of multiple attack and the Boeing CH-47 Chinook of mixed transport. In these moments the Complex can handle and attend almost all the military and civil aircraft in use. The Complex also houses a great military campaign hospital. And large areas of this great base are protected by a nine meters high concrete wall, which spreads over a perimeter of more of 40km, inserted with special vigilance towers, with soldiers and high technology instruments.

Resultado de imagen de soldados indisciplinados SOLDIERS DRINKING IN THE JAIL.

The British base has been attacked in diverse occasions during his years of existence. The most “media” occasion has been this that we treat. In the assault were dead two Marines (of the attached Camp Leatherneck). And other nine persons, eight military men and a civil contractor, were hurt. Six McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier II airplanes of the Marines Corps were destroyed and other two were very damaged. As for the logistic facilities, were destroyed three stations of fuels supply and damaged six aviation hangars not structurally reinforced.

The atack tactic of the Taliban.

The Taliban usual procedure to assault a weak defended or without spirit enemy position is this: at dawn they bombard with the fixed rocket launchers heavy fire, then they approach to use mortars, finally, the assault is realized by several independent squads, that converging advance shooting AK and RPD or PK machine gun bursts and their RPG and RL hollow charge grenade-launchers. They only fire on verified targets or from above and from below them. When they try to keep the surprise, the initiative and the confusion, to lengthen the military reaction time and to obtain a very local and temporary superiority, they act without their meager heavy fire support.

E incluso avanzan arrastrándose lenta y pacientemente. Por ejemplo, para romper un perímetro defensivo y dirigirse y atacar los hangares y aparcamientos evidentes de grandes aeronaves.

A characteristic of the Taliban is that they do not get involved in the defense of their positions. Once obtained the harassment of the enemy and extended the hurt, the mutilation and the stupor on the military men, they will move back. They are not so silly to wait intrepid for the heavy, precise and devastate military fire. Nor to presume of courage, in front of enemies with weapons of superior range and characteristics and capable of turning a surface target into a destruction zone. Also, there are the time and its corollary, the opportunity. The Taliban handle very well the tactical and operational times. They are masters of the patience, the waiting, the repetition of simple and easy trainings. For the important attacks they manage to use scale models of the goal. And, to penetrate in a base and attack the heavy and evident war aircrafts, only need to represent part of the perimeter, the directional location of the target and its identification, as well as the rejection fighting positions of the irruption sector.

Its execution.

Enough hours before 12 pm of Thursday, the 13th of September of 2012, the Taliban forces began to approach from several directions to the air zone of the Complex. To keep a low tactical trace, they followed dragging techniques in their advance to and through the security zone of the area. And up to there got, without being detected, 45 to 50 insurgents that, in three convergent spears of advance attacked by midnight, supported by their squad organic weapons. Not to being detected up to the beginning of the assault, also helped them the scanty combative availability of the men. And the tedious and unproductive routine of the guards and patrols, which creates the passive defense of a great protective barrack. Around 15 Taliban from two of the groups, managed to get through Camp Bastion’s perimeter and to effectively attack the air zone. Finally the attacking group was wiped out (dead and injured men and prisoners).

It was a «significant» assault, the British Defense Department declared, as the insurgents should never have come so far away. It was, admitted the ISAF, a «good coordinated» attack. Organized in three assault groups, the Taliban managed to get through the defense perimeter of the base. «They were well equipped and trained, dressing USA Army uniforms and armed with automatic rifles, grenade-launchers and explosive jackets», continued the ISAF in his communique. This mission assured that during the assault, the international troops killed 14 insurgents and hurt other one, who is arrested.

The British correspondents in Afghanistan assured that Camp Bastion has an excellent visibility from all parts and is extremely strengthened. The defense correspondent of the Daily Telegraph, who has been for more than twelve times in Camp Bastion, wrote on Sunday, the 14th: «In spite of being in the center of the most dangerous province of Afghanistan, I always felt completely sure, undoubtedly, from an assault of the Taliban. And honestly I believed that there were more possibilities of dying knocked down by a military vehicle that murdered by insurgents». The Coalition’s forces, make clear the correspondents, ask themselves how the Taliban were capable of giving this surprise attack to a strengthened and isolated complex barrack. And a spokesman, Adam Wojack, said that the Friday assault «was a sign for the Coalition that it is necessary to give much attention to the popular, local and international state of mind about Afghanistan».

On Monday, the 10th of September Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman insurgent, declared to Reuters that the Taliban were trying to use all their resources to kill the prince Henry (also called «Harry the Nude», his name of war), third in the succession line to the British throne. After the facts, another Taliban spokesman underlined that they attacked in «revenge» for the American amateur movie which offends Mohammed. And that they choose to commit an attack against Camp Bastion, because the prince Harry was there, acting as co-pilot gunner in the Joint Air Group.

 

And other one of an unsuccessful army …

On Sunday, the 18th of December, 2016, the franchise of the Islamic State in the Republic of Yemen realized an assault against the barracks of the so called National Security in al-Saulaba. That is placed 20 km at north of the coastal city of Aden, at the south of the country and that is now his nominal capital. One first showy characteristic of these suicidal assaults of the EI is that from August of this year, three assaults have been realized against the same barracks. Whose commands obstinatly mantain an ineffective and deficient «combative readiness» of the forces of the garrison, to keep their security.

In the last assault, the most lethal, died 50 soldiers of the Army of Yemen, loyalist to the president Abdo Rabu Mansur Hade. Hundreds of soldiers were still in the exterior of the barracks, waiting to receive the permission to enter and to receive their pays. One thousand soldiers had acceded already in the military facilities. But the access was limited to avoid agglomerations in the courts and facilities. Then, sunni terrorist slipped between the soldiers who were waiting out. And detonated his explosives jacket. Possibly liberating the so called “detonator of the dead man”.

The security is one of so called “principles of the war». That define «what to do» to obtain militarily our aims. And though it does not appear in all the existing lists of principles, specially in the shorter ones, the security is here to remain. And of its not observance, the efficiency and the power of other accepted principles will get reduced or disabled in their application. Since the principles constitute a global, harmonic and synergic set of the procedures of the to do well, for a military operational system.

EPILOG.

The combination of the usual defense and the mobile proactive defense exercises a synergic and convergent effect, of perfection and securement of the security zone. To detect and reject the tactical surprises of the enemy and to alert the own forces of his appearance from behind horizon. And to blur him the tracing of our defense zone. Thanks to the combat and observation advanced positions and the actions from them and of the patrols and advanced detachments. That would allow the enemy to glimpse and estimate where there would be the «defense positions» in the rejection zone and where the heavy fires of the defense would preferably go, in front of the forward limit of the mentioned zone.