OEE Red Diamond MAY17

The Red Diamond newsletter presents professional information but the views expressed herein are those of the authors, not the Department of Defense or its elements. The content does not necessarily reflect the official US Army position and does not change or superseded any information in other official US Army publications. Authors are responsible for the accuracy and source documentation of the material that they reference. The Red Diamond staff reserves the right to edit material. Appearance of external hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the US Army for information contained therein.

This May 2017 Red Diamond newsletter leads with recent Russian actions in the Arctic region as an article “Russian Designs of the 80th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade for Operations in the Artic.” The Arctic Ocean region is becoming a potential source of conflict. With the impending ice melts that open up shipping lanes and potential resources, there is a new interest in this barren region. There are five countries with claims in the Arctic Ocean: Russia, United States, Canada, Norway, and Denmark. These five countries’ claims have all been based on the UN Convention Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), with the exception of the United States which has not ratified this treaty.

“Threat Tactical Vignette: Delay and Linkup” is the sixth and concluding article in this Red Diamond tactical series at platoon echelon for mission tasks of delay and linkup. Focusing on reconnaissance and counter-reconnaissance as economy of force actions, the vignette mission provides early warning and a degree of protection to the force main body. As the current tactical situation evolves in the independent reconnaissance patrol’s zone, actions to delay and linkup challenge the platoon leader and senior sergeant to accomplish the mission and intent while not becoming decisively engaged by the enemy.

The article, “Trends in Attacks against Police and Military in Northwest India 2013–2016,” provides a background for situational awareness, and a regional overview of the various threat actors that have impacted the India Administered Kashmir (IAK) in northwestern India operational environment over the past four years. Highlights include some of the major incidents perpetrated by militants during the same timeframe.

“Anti-tank Guided Missile Raid” is the first article of a two-part article series that describes actual incidents that can guide Opposing Force (OPFOR) tactical tasks of raid and ambush. Observations from an anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) video in the ongoing conflict between Yemeni rebels and Saudi Arabian forces provide insight on successful use of ATGMs in these mission tasks. The video footage was reportedly captured near the two countries’ borders in the vicinity of Najran province. This article focuses on the tactical actions of an ATGM raid. A subsequent article will emphasize the follow-on ambush to the raid as a planned tactical action.

The present civil war in Syria is the article setting to present the Sarab (Arabic for Mirage) family of active protective systems (APSs) against anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs). Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebels initially had access to only a limited number of ATGMs with most appropriated from the inventories of Bashar al Assad’s Syrian Arab Armed Forces (SAA). However, in April 2015 the rebels successfully used ATGMs to destroy about 40 SAA main battle tanks. The arrival of ever-increasing numbers of highly lethal ATGMs translated into daunting tank losses for the Syrian Arab Army. In response, the Syrian high command developed a jamming device capable of interdicting the flight paths of adversary semi-automatic command line-of-sight (SACLOS)-guided ATGMs. The eventual outcome of this effort was a family of soft-kill weapons serially fielded as the Sarab. This article assesses the evolution and fielding of the Sarab family of soft-kill weapons, the recent impact of these weapons on the Syrian operational environment, and the potential implications of soft-kill weapons in future OEs.