Author Topic: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan  (Read 10879 times)

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Offline tomahawk6

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Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« on: February 27, 2009, 09:37:28 »
Talk about a logistics nightmare as everything and everybody has to go by air.


From the Army Times.

Tactical advantage

Stryker team will give boost to Afghanistan operation

By Matthew Cox and Michelle Tan

mcox@militarytimes.com mtan@militarytimes.com

When the 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team deploys this summer, it will hit the ground with a tactical edge that’s never been seen before in Afghanistan.

That’s just what Gen. David McKiernan, commander of U.S. Forces-Afghanistan and NATO’s International Security Assistance Force, wants.
“I asked for a Stryker capability with one of the brigade combat teams, so that it could provide the mobility, the situational aware­ness, the protection — and quite frankly, it provides a lot of in­fantrymen,” McKiernan said at a Feb. 18 Pentagon briefing.

“And that would give us an abil­ity to maneuver capabilities in the southern and southwestern parts of Afghanistan.” McKiernan said it’s “an area where we need persistent security presence in order to fight a coun­terinsurgency and to shape, clear, hold and build.” The Stryker brigade, the Army’s newest and part of the 2nd In­fantry Division at Fort Lewis, Wash., had been set to deploy to Iraq for its first combat tour. Now the unit will be part of a buildup in Afghanistan ordered by Presi­dent Barack Obama.

By summer, 17,000 more U.S. troops will deploy to Afghanistan to help squash a complex and stubborn insurgency, officials an­nounced Feb. 17. The move will bring the total number of U.S. troops there to about 55,000.

In addition to the 4,000-strong Stryker brigade, the plus-up plan calls for 5,000 other support troops. Those units have not been identified.

Also, 8,000 Marines from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade from Camp Lejeune, N.C., are to be operational by the “highest part of the insurgent fighting season this summer,” McKiernan said.

He added that strength provided by the additional troops in Afghanistan — which includes 3rd BCT, 10th Mountain Division, which is already operating south of Kabul, and the 82nd Combat Avia­tion Brigade, which is to deploy in the spring — likely will have to be sustained for three to five years.

“This is not a temporary force uplift,” he said. “It’s going to need to be sustained for some period of time.” The decision on two requests that remain unfilled — including a brigade’s worth of trainers to mentor the Afghan army and po­lice — likely will not be made until later this year, he said.
“I have what I need through the summer, what I’ve asked for,” McKiernan said.

So far, Afghanistan rotations have fallen on light infantry brigades, whose training for dis­mounted and motorized operations are most conducive to the varied, mostly austere terrain there.

Senior ground commanders in­tend to use the SBCT’s unique blend of fast-moving firepower and light infantry structure to help tame the hundreds of square miles of open country that make up portions of southern Afghanistan.

Over the past five years, the Army has reserved these light­weight, armored fighting units for service in Iraq. In that time, SBCTs have forged a reputation for moving fast and attacking enemy strongholds all over the country’s densely populated cities as well as its vast desert frontier.

The senior leadership in Iraq often has relied on the SBCTs to act as a quick-reaction force be­cause of their flexibility to quickly prepare, travel several hundred miles and fight on arrival. They can be plugged into hot spots on short notice.

For example, in April 2004, at the request of senior commanders in Iraq, 3rd SBCT, 2nd Infantry Division, sent one of its three bat­talions to fight in the battle for Najaf. The battalion had 24 hours to get ready. It traveled 500 miles in about 36 hours and showed up ready for battle.

Master Sgt. Marc Griffith, who came home from Iraq in June 2008 after serving with 4th SBCT, 2nd Infantry Division, sees ad­vantages in the order for Strykers to hit Afghanistan, a place he’s served four times.

“There’s going to be a fight down there, and I think they’re a good unit to be down there,” he said. “Giving them the Stryker gives them that roving locker room that they can refit, rearm [and] maneuver from A to B more quickly.” The Stryker ’s ability to carry a complete nine-man infantry squad is a key advantage, said Griffith, who served and twice in Iraq with 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment before deploy­ing with the 4th SBCT. He is now assigned to Project Manager Sol­dier Warrior.

Also, Strykers are “more protect­ed than a Humvee, it takes less lo­gistical and muscle movement than an air assault unit, and it has proven its worth in Iraq,” he said.

“I think it’ll be just as effective, if not more, in Afghanistan, as long as it’s utilized and matched with the correct terrain.” The only challenge he envisions is logistics, Griffith said.

“The distances in Afghanistan and the infrastructure that sup­ports that country can’t compare to Iraq,” he said. “The speed in which you can get around Iraq is much greater than in Afghanistan.” Maintenance depots are now being stood up for the 300 Stryker vehicles that will be sent to the Afghanistan theater, said Lt. Gen. James Pillsbury, deputy com­manding general of Army Ma­teriel Command.


The current maintenance sus­tainment plan for Strykers has it done by contractors in theater for the first two years, he said, and after that the work would go to military maintainers.

“We’re going to put the repair capability where it’s needed,” Pillsbury said. “It’s probably going to be north and south.” The 5th Stryker Brigade soldiers were at the National Training Cen­ter at Fort Irwin, Calif., when the announcement was made about their deployment. However, the soldiers had earlier received notice that they might be diverted to Afghanistan, brigade spokesman Maj. Brian DeSantis said.

“The brigade switched some training objectives and the sol­diers who were learning Arabic did switch to learning Pashto, they did switch to the cultural im­mersion program for Afghanistan,” he said. “Fortunate­ly they had enough time here at the National Training Center to switch from an Iraq scenario to an Afghanistan scenario, so the brigade got out here and was able to jump right into [it].” The soldiers, who are expected to return to Fort Lewis in early March, also are benefiting from NTC trainers and staff who have experience in Afghanistan, De­Santis said.

The Stryker brigade concept was launched in late 1999 when then-Army Chief of Staff Gen. Eric Shinseki tasked the Army to stand up a highly deployable fighting force that combined the flexibility of a light infantry force with the staying power of a heavy outfit.

The Stryker vehicle is designed to fit inside a C-130 cargo aircraft, which allows the Army to deploy a brigade anywhere in the world in 96 hours. The Stryker can also be transported by C­5 Galaxys and C-17 Globemasters.

Since 2003, the Army has field­ed seven SBCTs, each equipped with 300 Stryker vehicles. There are 10 variants of the eight­wheeled common-chassis design. At the heart of the Stryker forma­tion is the M1126 Infantry Carri­er Vehicle. In addition to its two­man crew, it can easily carry a full nine-man infantry squad. The heavier M2A2 Bradley fighting vehicle has a crew of three and carries six infantrymen.
Stryker vehicles have a sophis­ticated communications package that consists of Force XXI Battle Command, Brigade and Below, the Army’s tactical Internet, GPS and radio systems, which give leaders multiple ways of commu­nicating on the battlefield.

In addition, the 5th SBCT will be the first full combat brigade to deploy with Land Warrior, a wear­able, command-and-control kit that recently returned from a year of combat in Iraq with Stryker sol­diers from 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 4th SBCT, 2nd Infantry Division.

Leaders down to the team­leader level can look into the miniature computer screen on Land Warrior ’s helmet-mounted display and view mission-specific satellite imagery, maps and graphics stored on the system’s microcomputer processor. The navigation system lets a leader track his position and his subordi­nate leaders’ positions, which ap­pear as icons on a digital map.

Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry credited Land Warrior with giving them a clearer view of their tactical environment and empowering them to move with more certainty than ever before.

The 5th SBCT is scheduled to deploy with about 1,000 sets of a newer version of Land Warrior, one that weighs about 8 pounds, compared with the 11-pound sys­tem 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry took to Iraq.

The Strykers’ Remote Weapons Station allows the vehicle com­mander to track targets and shoot from inside the Stryker. The RWS also has Forward Looking Infrared or thermal imaging that can be used day or night to scan for tar­gets.

The additional forces will help U.S. and NATO forces change what McKiernan called a “stale­mate” in the volatile southern provinces of Afghanistan.

“But I would like to reinforce what the president has said, that this is not going to be won by mil­itary forces alone,” he said. “While this will give us a security foundation, we certainly need ad­ditional contributions, civilian ca­pacity-building programs that will enable people in Afghanistan to feel hope and to develop their abilities to take the lead for their governance.”

Staff writer Gina Cavallaro contributed to this report.

Offline geo

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2009, 09:56:08 »
Quote
“This is not a temporary force uplift,” he said. “It’s going to need to be sustained for some period of time.” The decision on two requests that remain unfilled — including a brigade’s worth of trainers to mentor the Afghan army and po­lice — likely will not be made until later this year, he said.

well... this could tie in with what our political types want us to do from 2011 & beyond.
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Offline Nerf herder

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2009, 15:45:20 »
I just hope that they are willing to learn stuff from us...if not, it's going to be a steep learning curve.

Regards
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Offline geo

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2009, 13:16:18 »
learning curve for the Afghans or the Americans ?

Chimo!

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2009, 15:49:31 »
One additional training brigade has already been identified--does the story refer to a futher one?

Afstan: Extra brigade of US trainers to come
http://toyoufromfailinghands.blogspot.com/2009/02/afstan-extra-brigade-of-us-trainers-to.html

Mark
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Offline tomahawk6

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2009, 15:54:20 »
It refers to the GaNG 48th Brigade.

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2009, 16:15:43 »
I just hope that they are willing to learn stuff from us...if not, it's going to be a steep learning curve.

Regards

Bring tires...

Offline tomahawk6

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2009, 16:32:48 »
Tire usage in Iraq averaged 11 tires a day for the brigade or once every 200 days per tire. The rugged terrain of Afghanistan will no doubt chew up tires.


AF tapped to fly 300 Strykers to Afghanistan

By Bruce Rolfsen - Staff writer
Posted : Sunday Mar 1, 2009 8:45:42 EST
   
The Army will be depending on the Air Force to deliver about 300 Stryker combat vehicles to Afghanistan, according to Air Force Gen. Duncan McNabb, the boss of U.S. Transportation Command.

McNabb told members of the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday that airlifting the Strykers into Afghanistan was the only option because of their highly sophisticated gear and the threat to convoys moving goods by land across Pakistan.

A C-130 Hercules can hold one 19-ton Stryker, a C-17 Globemaster has room for four and a C-5 Galaxy can carry up to five, according to military and contractor fact sheets. Commercial cargo planes could carry some of the vehicles.

The Strykers ordered to be in Afghanistan by August are assigned to the 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Fort Lewis, Wash. The Army installation is adjacent to McChord Air Force Base, a West Coast hub for C-17 operations.

Air Force and commercial cargo planes were the primary way large MRAP vehicles — short for mine-resistant ambush protected vehicles — were delivered to Afghanistan last year.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2009, 16:43:19 by tomahawk6 »

Offline geo

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2009, 17:54:20 »
With stryker brigades being deployed to KAF, I guess we'll get to see the Stryker MGS vehicle in operation and within a cohesive doctrine.

Who knows, we may see some things we like in the MGS.... stranger things have been known to happen
Chimo!

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2009, 18:03:49 »
I'm probably out to lunch here, but I was under the impression the Striker's were tracked for the most part.....

(that comes from the various arguments of tracks on Strikers vs tires on LAV's, otherwise they were essentially the same vehicles)
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Offline geo

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2009, 18:07:03 »
Strykers ARE wheeled LAVs
Bradleys & M113s are Tracked LAVs (TLAVs)
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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2009, 18:12:12 »
seen, thanks
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Offline Bzzliteyr

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2009, 09:50:31 »
GAP, I'm thinking you are referring to the British CVRT Strikers which are in fact, tracked vehicles.
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Online MJP

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2009, 10:00:22 »
Bring tires...

And Diffs......It was the constant headache with our LAVs.

Strykers would be an excellent fit for Helmand Province, where it is fairly wide open and conducive to mech type ops.
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Offline MCG

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2009, 10:16:45 »
And Diffs......It was the constant headache with our LAVs.
The Stryker has different suspension & drive train than most of our LAV had during our tour.  They might not have the same problem to the same extent. 

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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2009, 10:38:30 »
The Stryker has different suspension & drive train than most of our LAV had during our tour.  They might not have the same problem to the same extent. 

Very true plus IIRC their system was designed above and beyond their add-on armour weight as well, so they are not putting the strain on the vehicle we were.
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Re: Stryker Brigade Bound For Afghanistan
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2009, 11:56:14 »
Believe it or not, their turretless APCs are running heavier than our APCs, and our APCs are running heavier than even their 3.5 system is designed to support.  That’s why it’s hard to predict what the wear will be on their vehicles.  It is also why GLDLS has developed the 5 (which can be found on LAV H).