Combat Support Function

1401 Words 6 Pages
Misconception of Combat Support Function
Support and lead from the front 1SG! Wow, can supporting the Combined Arms Battalion become the most challenging aspect of my next few years. The element of overwhelming complexity and inspirational mentorship not only tested my leadership ability but also tested my aptitude of the forward support company concept (FSC). From standing the company up with two Soldier’s to over 200, then grappling with setting the first integrated FSC concept into 2-34 Armor (AR) Battalion. Completion of one strategic NTC rotation with integrating and conducting force on force combined with advise and assist, and cumulating every aspect into the final moments during a leader’s recon to Afghanistan. Experience and skills
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The company was formed and running like a Swiss watch. Incoming Soldiers began to dwindle with the military table of organization and equipment (MTOE) authorizing 213 and the company resting at just under 190. Our company was three times larger than the Armor Company and double of an average Infantry Company. It provided the Battalion (BN) a great deal of flexibility and a remarkable logistical capability. If only the BN leadership were informed of this newly implemented concept.
June came quickly and found the company integrated fairly well and ready to conduct our very first NTC rotation. The company structured with cooks and distribution platoon arriving on the advance party and the mechanics trailing a few weeks behind. BN Leadership allowed us to integrate as needed, which proved to be invaluable by allowing my senior platoon sergeants to push the BN with equipment, feeding and logistical needs. Over the next week, it became evident that the BN Commander relied too heavily on our company. Our required training moved quickly to support Alpha thru Delta Company METLs and became over reactive and poorly planned. BN leaders quickly lost focus of the training opportunity and concentrate on the FSC personnel
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All company commanders and 1SG’s became aware that 2-34AR BN would be deploying in March, location unknown. To me, the company was ready to support the BN, but was the BN ready for the FSC. Looking back, how did others base our success with logistical support? Did they base the company success on performance-orientated success? Was the concept based on keeping the trucks moving, feeding the hungry infantry Soldiers, or was it distro platoon to keep moving and provided the essential material? Over the next few months, a recon will soon help answer those questions.
Over 230 Soldier’s stood in my formation with a look of disbelief. The Base Support Battalion (BSB) kept pushing more Soldiers well beyond my MTOE strength. Platoon sergeants found they spent more time conducting integration and less time preparing and building the platoon. For the BN, this was perfect and supported the commander 's intent with filling all MTOE shortages and providing a sustainable bench. However, at times quantity does not replace

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