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Cultural Awareness

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Submitted By jackhorner
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SSG Riemann, SSG Carerras & SGT Horner
SFC Hopkins
11 October 2012
Equipments and Tactics from the World Wars and Today
The Field Artillery is and always has been the King of Battle. Technology and tactic have been refined over the years based on lessons learned from the past. During the World Wars the implementation of new equipment and tactics helped shape the field artillery of today. However, some of the same equipment and tactics are still being used today.
Warfare had changed in the years leading up to the United States involvement in WW1. A lot of the fighting went back into the trenches. This in return promoted the use of small munitions such as motors, for closer combat effectiveness. Initially, horses moved many of the smaller artillery pieces like the 3inch motors. They were able to move quicker and in tighter places than a vehicle. However, the ability to keep the horses combat effective became a challenge do to shipping them from so far away. The change from horses to jeeps became a reality. 105mm and 155mm howitzers conducted specific missions and large trucks or even tractors moved them. In 1944 the development of the rocket battalion which provided thirty-six rockets launchers. A single rocket could take out a larger area on its own. This allowed howitzers to be independent. Prior to the rockets they had to bring multiple howitzers together to take out as much real estate as one rocket. However, howitzers were more accurate. The soldiers became very proficient with the howitzers and could use them to pin point a target. One of the main reasons the United States were able to use howitzers so accurately was the implementation of the observation battalion in 1944. This allowed for more accurate target area survey. The utilization of radar allowed for better weather data. Ultimately, this allowed for higher order survey. In returned allowed for more steel on target. During the World Wars tactics changed to allow for a more relevant and proficient artillery. The utilization of soldiers forward to provide accurate and timely information of enemy forces help shape the field artillery for the years to come. This allows for accurate fire to remove the enemy communications and gun locations. Artillery barrages and chemical munitions were effective for enemy counter attacks. Self propelled pieces also help the mobility and agility of the field artillery, as well as, the utilization of variable timed fuses. All of these tactics help change the outcome of the war and establish the field artillery as the king of battle.
In today’s modern warfare, field artillery had to changed. After the Vietnam War, the field artillery community had to change their views of the field artillery, to include the organizational structure, roles and responsibilities and modernization standards in order to be successful in any type of conflict. The lessons we have learned from Vietnam helped us place artillery units during Operation Iraqi Freedom when it became a counterinsurgency war. The artillery community came up with a FM 3-07.22 that explains where we went wrong in the past wars, and how we can improve to win against an insurgency. Artillery help the troops on the ground by taking out the majority of the enemy on the battle field. The technology of today, they have merged computer-guided targeting into the guns and munitions to provide accuracy and a hasty attacks and mobility.

For example, the M109A6 Paladin is the latest advancement in the 155mm self-propelled artillery. This system has an onboard navigational and automatic fire control system. It was the fourth product improvement to the original M109 howitzer. The improvements consist of survivability, reliability, availability, and maintainability. It is manned by a crew of four. The purpose of the M109A6 is that it can operate independently from on the move. The AFATADS systems in them can receive fire missions, compute firing data, and take up a good firing position. It can unlock its firing cannon and point in any direction that it needs to fire. It is designed to upgrade to new technology, for instance, the firing range and the rate of fire. Before any of this technology, the cannon was not as effective and accurate as it is today. Before digital communications came into play, they had a crew member run a communication wire down to the fire-direction center. Now since digital communications are available, the guns are able to receive their fire missions, put in survey information and compute weather data into their systems. This eliminated a lot of time and loss of soldiers on the battlefield.

In today’s modern combat, we have enemies all over the globe, and we need to be able to take them out. Using outstanding navigation and surveying abilities of GPS in missiles we are able to take out our enemies. The only issue with GPS missiles is that they run out of fuel quickly. In the early guidance systems the main source used on a missile was a gyroscope. Today’s warfare the missiles are guided by a radar signal, wire, laser, or GPS. One of the Missile Launcher Systems that is being used in the present wars is the M270. This launcher was mounted on a stretched Bradley chassis, it is self-loading and self-aiming. It also has new technology built into it, containing a fire control computer which combines the rocket-launching operations to the vehicle. The M270 also fires a GPS guided missile, called the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS). It was developed at Lockheed Martin, and was used in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in March 2003.

Craig Swain. Artillery Evolution: Expanding Field Artillery for World War 1, November 19, 2011
The Evolution of Artillery <
Janice E. McKinney. The Organizational History of the Field Artillery 1775-2003, 2007…...

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