Military Review

Issues of optimization of the organizational structure of the combined arms units

Issues of optimization of the organizational structure of the combined arms units

I came to the need to write an article on such a topic after reading a number of other articles proposing the modernization of the modern organizational structure. Basically, these articles suggest returning the old Soviet states of motorized rifle tank divisions. Most suggest that the structure should be based on a battalion tactical group - a reinforced tank or motorized rifle battalion with full-time artillery, air defense, engineering, chemical and other types of troops, combat, technical and logistical support units. Moreover, it is proposed, copying NATO principles, to introduce artillery battalions, reconnaissance companies and many other subunits that are often not needed at all by the battalion as structural units in the staff of the combined-arms battalion.

At the same time, the battalion turns out to be overly bloated and clumsy, and there can be no talk of its mobility. This approach, I think, is fundamentally wrong. How can one get out of this situation without reducing the combat capabilities of the units and at the same time increasing mobility and controllability?

First of all I want to say that the beautiful expression “battalion tactical group” (BTGr) as a whole is nothing more than a beautiful phrase. It is, of course, theoretically the most flexible and minimal system, including heterogeneous units. But the battalion does not have a full-fledged headquarters and control system, sufficient to manage unsuited units. Everything is based only on good principles and relations of the battalion commander and the commanders of attached units.

Yes, according to the Combat Regulations of the Ground Forces of the Russian Federation, commanders of attached units are obliged to obey and execute the orders of the battalion commander to which they are assigned. However, it seems incomprehensible who and how should plan the actions of the assigned units before the battle, organize their interaction in the battle, provide them with ammunition, fuel and materiel, organize the maintenance of weapons and military equipment, evacuate damaged equipment, etc. in the overall BTGr system. The commander and chief of staff of the battalion, even if they are seven spans in the forehead, during the battle will not be able to fully lead such a “hodgepodge” of diverse units, they will not have enough time to analyze the situation, make a quality decision, draw up a combat order, bring it to units, operational control of the battle and fire control of full-time and attached units, and the commanders of attached units will not be able to fully implement their assistance, based on employment preparation for the battle and direct guidance of their units.

Such a gap in the regular structure of the motorized infantry is filled with the so-called “commander's will”, fraught with nervous and physical overstrain and early fatigue of the battalion command. This is far from a positive phenomenon, entailing losses in people and equipment in battle.

At the same time, I am far from the thought that this gap will be filled by the controls of the motorized rifle or tank brigade, in turn, overloaded with the solution of a number of operational-tactical tasks. Fighting is not a teaching, where everyone without commands and orders knows their learned maneuver at a familiar training ground, these are somewhat different conditions, you will not take an operational pause and you will not agree with an intermediary.

Under such circumstances, I consider it necessary to have another additional level of division management - the regimental one. In contrast to the Soviet regimental structure, similar to the staff structure of the motorized rifle or tank brigade, for the most controllability and mobility I think it is necessary to have a smaller number of its regular units. I propose to introduce into the brigade a 2-3 mechanized regiment consisting of one tank and one motorized rifle battalion of four-men troop, artillery and anti-aircraft battalions, anti-tank, reactive batteries, engineer and engineer, reconnaissance, communications companies, chemical flamethrower platoon, repair and material support mouth. The brigade will also need to introduce an artillery regiment (BrAG) of a two-division structure, a rocket division, an anti-aircraft missile regiment, a reconnaissance battalion and others that are similarly part of the current brigade.

This state will have a smaller number of units than the state of the Soviet motorized rifle division, twice, when equipped with modern management systems, it will provide greater mobility and controllability. At its core, such a mechanized regiment will be akin to a modern BTGr, but at a higher quality level, having a well-established, well-established control system for both motorized rifle and tank troops, and units of the arms of service. For example, the commander of an artillery battalion during the battle will receive command and control not from the headquarters of the motorized rifle battalion, often poorly versed in the use of artillery, but directly from the regimental artillery chief, who subordinates the means of artillery reconnaissance and command. Anyway, a regiment is an organism, a military unit with its services and rear.

Next, we will focus on the need to have the four-arm structure of the regiment's tank and motorized rifle battalions. This is not a tribute to NATO fashion. This composition will allow organizing two BTGrs inside the regiment — tank and motorized rifle, transferring from the tank battalion one tank company to the motorized rifle battalion, and one motorized rifle company from the motorized rifle battalion to the tank battalion. If necessary, you can have a balanced composition of battalions - two tank and two motorized rifle companies each.

In general, on the basis of regimental units, it will be possible to form up to 6 company tactical groups during the period of hostilities, according to 3 in each battalion. Depending on the actions in the direction of the main strike or secondary direction, the construction of the combat order of a mechanized regiment will be one- or two-echelon, which will ensure the fulfillment of the combat mission to the maximum.

I believe that such changes in the organizational and staff structure of the motorized rifle (tank) brigade will solve the eternal questions of manageability and mobility of the formations.
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  1. sso-xnumx
    sso-xnumx 21 May 2014 09: 46
    A review of the organizational structure and its change to a divisional structure must be carried out as soon as possible. We are not states, in our open spaces no brigades will be enough to fight! It is impossible to resist the motorized rifle brigade against the combined-arms division! They will walk along it and not even notice. For local conflicts, the brigade system is suitable, and for large-scale actions, associations are needed. But, with a flexible management and support system, an optimal structure of units and divisions. Reasonable balance of forces and means!
    1. 222222
      222222 21 May 2014 10: 31
      sso-250659 RU Today, 09:46 AM New
      How long does the division leave its permanent locations ?? And how many brigade. ??? The maneuverable nature and concept of the transfer of troops from one district and even the theater to another ... what was seen at the last exercises of the RF Armed Forces ..
      1. Nagaibak
        Nagaibak 21 May 2014 11: 17
        222222 "And how many brigade. ??? The maneuverable nature and the concept of transferring troops from one district and even a theater to another ... what we saw at the last exercises of the RF Armed Forces .."
        Throwing is fine!))) And only if the enemy allows you.))) A normal, full-fledged opponent of equal opportunities.))) And if it is a coalition of countries?))) Where and what will you transfer?
        And if against Georgia, then of course the brigades will do. Against Latvia, too.)))
        It seems to me that brigades are also needed and it is not worth giving up divisions. The point is the proportion of what you need and how much. Without prejudice to the country's defense.
      2. Alekseev
        Alekseev 21 May 2014 16: 42
        Quote: 222222
        How long does the division leave its permanent locations?

        And here is the time!
        The speed of putting into combat readiness is determined mainly by the degree of staffing of the unit (compound) and the preparation of l / s.
        What equals the connection of a division (i.e. several regiments, brigades) with a unit?
        Like everything in this world, military formations are created to solve various problems. Somewhere a combined-arms formation is needed, and where a reinforced or not reinforced infantry battalion of "partisans"
        It is obvious, for example, that in Chechnya it would be much better to have 3 full-blooded MSDs, which could also leave part of their tank, anti-aircraft missile, and RBKZ units in the SDA for protection than national teams and headquarters.
        The structure of the troops has been polished quite well over time. We can only talk about improving the staff of weapons and military equipment and l / s. Ie how much and what kind of weapons to have and how many military units "under it" is necessary.
        1. sso-xnumx
          sso-xnumx 22 May 2014 12: 14
          Totally agree!
      3. _CAMOBAP_
        _CAMOBAP_ 21 May 2014 23: 13
        Quote: 222222
        sso-250659 RU Today, 09:46 AM New
        How long does the division leave its permanent locations ?? And how many brigade. ???

        If we evaluate by such criteria, the battalion will leave even faster, and the platoon in general will "fly out like a fly." And the division does not leave the whole "en masse", but regiments and separate units (subunits). The question is - what tasks can and should be solved by a division and a brigade (in fact - a reinforced, and even then not always - a regiment). And management is one thing for a regular division, where the division commander knows his regiment commanders, where regular command and staff battles were held, and so on. and quite another - by three or four brigades, even if they are quantitatively "more powerful".
      4. sso-xnumx
        sso-xnumx 22 May 2014 12: 09
        It's not about time! It makes no sense to transfer troops from west to east and vice versa. Everything should be balanced in strategic directions. And we have a lack of manpower and resources in one direction offset by the other. As a military doctor I’ll say that the division had OMEDB, a stage of qualified medical care, which proved its need in sweat and blood, both for doctors and soldiers. Now in the brigade medrot, calculated on the first medical aid, then comes the hospital link. But there are no field hospitals; OMEDB is unclear in what quality and how they should provide medical care. If we, as the Americans, had a bunch of transport helicopters to evacuate the wounded to the hospital base, then I agree to any reform of the staff structure, if this does not contradict common sense. Yes, only here they break everything at once, but restore it in parts. And as always, soldiers and officers of the lower divisions are paying.
        PS And the brigades in the course of large-scale actions, in my opinion, should be a highly mobile reserve for developing success in profitable directions, or eliminating breakthroughs.
    2. Su24
      Su24 4 August 2014 22: 30
      I suggest introducing 2-3 mechanized regiments into the brigade, consisting of one tank and one motorized rifle battalions of four-troop composition, each of artillery and anti-aircraft battalions,

      Such a brig will be a division.
  2. Good cat
    Good cat 21 May 2014 10: 20
    I understood a little, but it sounds convincing, an article plus
  3. runway
    runway 21 May 2014 10: 49
    With the advent of new weapons, the structure of the Armed Forces will certainly change. But the structure of military units and subunits must be approached very carefully, since a successful combination of combat and rear units for some conditions will be unacceptable for others. Carrying out organizational and staffing activities of a military unit to change its composition implies that during the year the military unit will be incapacitated, implementing a set of measures to introduce these changes into its structure. The existing structure, already today allows us to solve the whole range of tasks facing our Armed Forces. Front-line and army kits make it possible to strengthen the formations and military units operating in the main direction in the shortest possible time. For the headquarters of the brigade it does not matter how many battalions and divisions will be part of the brigade, as well as the number of units assigned to it and its supporting units - the methodology of the headquarters does not change. The structure of the brigade for combat units during hostilities may be larger than the full-time division. The divisional structure is more dynamic for peacetime due to the balanced number of rear military units and divisions ....
    It is clear that the author wants our Armed Forces to be the best smile But when proposing changes to the existing organizational and staffing structure of our armed forces, along with increasing the combat capabilities of military units, we need to think about the financial and economic feasibility of these measures and even about the name of the battalion commander, who has two motorized rifle divisions and two tank companies - commander of a tank or motorized rifle battalionsmile
  4. albolo
    albolo 21 May 2014 11: 33
    It's just ridiculous when Russia is strongly advised to build its army according to the "European model", according to "NATO standards". Excuse me, but what would that be? Someone is able to recall a couple of "great" wars, "great" battles, which would have been conducted and won by the Western armies ??? This has not happened for the last 200 years! What should we learn from the West? Although, no, the West must learn from the provision of weapons and their timely updating! Financial and logistical support. As for the rest, Russia must proceed from its glorious combat experience. Naturally. it is necessary to urgently return to divisional and regimental structures. The author talks about the BTG, about the problems of interaction between the attached units. And this problem is easily eliminated when there is one general chief who is close - the regiment commander. The division commander eliminates all interaction problems between the regiments! And on the scale of a division and a regiment, you can create, depending on the situation, various tactical groups - both battalion and company.
    By the way, the West, from which we are trying to learn neither from divisions, nor from regiments, has not refused! There are divisions in ALL leading countries of both the West and China. And Smerdyukov and Makarov built their army according to the example of the Georgian, following the example of operetta South American and African countries. Today's Western sanctions against Russia clearly confirm the CRIMINAL activity of the smerdyuk-Makarovs according to the deliberate collapse of the Russian army. Anticipate if everything were going. how did the feldmebel want and Russia almost completely switched to arms purchases in the West? Moreover, the lousy weapons! Enough mind while giving up this idiocy! it is time to abandon Smerdyuk's idiocy in the organizational structure.
  5. chunga-changa
    chunga-changa 21 May 2014 12: 29
    The Germans in the Second World War solved this problem like this. A group of the most sensible officers was organized from the headquarters of the corps or division, an authoritative, proven officer was appointed to command, and a group of battalions and companies was formed from the divisions or corps for a specific task. Further, the received connection was thrown to the main task, and the rest of the units worked in the provision and cover. After completing the task, the group was disbanded until the next time. It is clear that such a group did not have any staffing, which gave them flexibility. We also tried something similar, called a consolidated group. At first it was not from a good life and it turned out badly, then, as it was mastered, it was used with success. Staffing is good for management and staffing in peacetime, or with overwhelming superiority in war. And if the forces are approximately equal or inferior, only flexibility in the distribution of forces and the ability to work with it will help. But the tactical unit should be a battalion, division, squadron, and here we need a stable staffing. I hope everyone remembers that the German corps is about our army, and their division is our corps.
    1. vomag
      vomag 21 May 2014 16: 39
      Nuuu do you know their division our corps is a very controversial statement (their two divisions are something like this and then with a stretch .... rather one and a half)
    2. _CAMOBAP_
      _CAMOBAP_ 21 May 2014 23: 52
      Quote: chunga-changa
      Staffing is good for management and staffing in peacetime, or with overwhelming superiority in war.

      Staff schedules - they are also "not from the bulldozer" are drawn up. As for the "consolidated" groups, this is no longer a question of the staffing table, but of competent management and reasonable initiative. Examples, both positive and negative - the darkness is dark. The author, in my opinion, complicates the management of the BTGr - just when training officers from school, more attention should be paid to the organization of interaction, especially in the field. In general, the author did not convince me - the topic, like grizzo, is "not disclosed".
  6. StrateG
    StrateG 21 May 2014 12: 44
    The best tactic is the tactics of the survivors. Maybe it’s not worth changing what we successfully fought with and what has been used successfully for a long time?
    Of course, I am not an expert in this matter, so I am waiting for criticism.
  7. Aleks tv
    Aleks tv 21 May 2014 13: 05
    Interesting article.
    Thanks to Evgeny Alekseev for a hot topic.

    The battalion does not have a full-fledged headquarters and command and control system sufficient to manage a variety of units.

    BTGr is a TACTICAL unit.
    By and large, this is a universal shock fist that can take revenge on full-fledged independent actions according to a previously approved plan by a higher headquarters.
    In short - BTGr can support itself by fire and protect itself bypassing higher headquarters.
    Do not demand from BTGr something more. These are the smallest possible units, the headquarters in the classical sense - she does not need.
    And BTGr is not a panacea for all ills, but only a TEMPORARILY created unit, IF IT IS NECESSARY for performing CERTAIN TACTICAL tasks.
    The BTGr is "fed" and "commanded" by a mother brigade or regiment.

    I consider it necessary to have another additional step in the management of units — the regimental.

    Many specialists agree with you.
    A regiment is an ideal organizational structure for linear education. In the regiment as in Greece - THERE IS EVERYTHING. This is really a minimal self-sufficient military unit.
    The same modern Brigades are a regiment with expanded capabilities in connection with giving it almost a whole "tail" of divisional units.
    Yes, they threw out 2 SMEs and TPs from the divisions and ... got "modern-looking brigades." Slightly exaggerated, but so, compare their OSH.

    I propose to introduce into the brigade the 2-3 mechanized regiment, consisting of one tank and one motorized rifle battalion of four-squad composition each,

    You intuitively want to create the same "BTGr", just larger and with a headquarters ...
    Fact is that regular full-blooded permanent division required.
    This division may:
    - act independently
    - Create from your state Brigades of the necessary composition for a certain theater of operations (theater of operations). It can be modern brigades and those that you offer.
    - Create the required number of BTGr, acting in concert according to the instructions of the REGIONAL (!!!) headquarters.
    - Anything, based on the realities of this theater.

    The mistake of our GSH is the creation of one OSH — the Brigade of a new look throughout the Russian Federation ... But such an OSH CANNOT satisfy all potential TVDs, and they are VARIOUS in us! Just made it easier.
    Even in the USSR there were differences in the OSH of divisions based on the theater of operations:
    * in the ZGV - tank divisions,
    * in ZABVO - Pools,
    * Rapid Response Troops - DShB.

    Such a composition will make it possible to organize two BTGr inside the regiment - a tank and a motorized rifle, transferring one tank company from a tank battalion to a motorized rifle battalion, and one motorized rifle company of a motorized rifle battalion to a tank battalion.

    “The SME staff has always had a reinforced tank battalion.”
    - The staff of TP has always been SMEs.
    Lisaped has long been invented. We must not forget all this invaluable experience.
    But in general, Eugene,
    Thanks for your thoughts.
    I hope that the discussion of your article will be interesting and fruitful.
    1. albolo
      albolo 21 May 2014 18: 37
      I agree with yours completely. I once served in the division. army corps and the district in ZakVO! So then, even each regiment had its own differences. The division located in the mountains in each motorized rifle regiment of the 1st MSB was mountainous. In this mountain battalion, the 1st company was alpine! With the appropriate training, with the appropriate equipment. Almost all of the nearly 80 motorized rifle regiments were different in terms of the number of personnel and weapons. etc.
    2. Zverev
      Zverev 21 May 2014 22: 17
      I agree. Very interesting.
    3. sso-xnumx
      sso-xnumx 22 May 2014 12: 23
      Quote: Aleks tv
      2 SMRs and TPs were thrown out of the divisions and ... received "brigades of modern appearance."

      Ensuring combat coordination of units and subunits of a division is always easier, since the commanders of units and subunits are more or less familiar with each other. And to disperse tank or artillery brigades in motorized rifle sections or to ensure their interaction is a waste of time and energy.
  8. Aleks tv
    Aleks tv 21 May 2014 13: 18
    And in the appendage a little bitterness:

    1. At the moment we have a three-star system:
    Team - Operational Command - District.
    It is no secret that during the exercise it was discovered that individual brigades WOULD interact with each other than the regiments of ONE division ...

    2. At the moment, the link "Operational Command" (headquarters of the armies) actually performs the function of the headquarters and management of the DIVISION ...

    3. And a question that I still can’t get an answer to:
    So they recreated (finally) several divisions, how do they enter the unified command and control network of the RF Armed Forces?
    As a brigade or as operational command?
    ps the stool was just chopping it down with an ax, the furniture maker of horseradish - into his firebox.
  9. Leshka
    Leshka 21 May 2014 17: 47
    increase the composition is necessary
  10. el.krokodil
    el.krokodil 15 July 2014 02: 11
    Generally speaking, the General Staff of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation exists and what is more, the Military Review ??? to whom is there anything to offer ??? ... alas, this is populism and self-promotion ..
  11. RSU
    RSU 15 July 2014 20: 50
    But it’s interesting what the community has about two-regiment divisions (I mean the main combat regiments, excluding the art regiment and air defense regiment). As far as I have information now, such divisions in the airborne forces, as well as Taman and Kantemirov two-regiment. In my opinion, a two-regiment division is only good for increasing the number of generals in the army, and is not effective in combat. What does the community think?
  12. E.S.A.
    E.S.A. April 2 2015 18: 33
    Fucking article - there is no layout on the rear units, because they are the basis for the successful functioning of the compound. If you count the rear according to the standards, then such a team will be larger than the previous division.