Auftragstaktik
Miniatures Rules

Mike J.
J-8 Shop


The British Army, 1980s
Introduction
In contrast to the French, the British walked away from World War II with a very different set of lessons. While the French nightmare consisted having their relatively well armed and protected Somua S-35s and Char B-1bis tanks outmaneuvered by puny German Panzer Is and IIs, the most traumatic British memory was spending the entire war facing more powerfully gunned and thickly armored Panzers. Even though the British Army was every bit as outclassed by the Wehrmacht in the opening years of the war as the French Army, with consecutive defeats in Norway, France, Greece, Crete, and North Africa by more agile and combined arms-oriented German forces, it was spared the defeat the French could not avoid by massive US aid (initially in the form of materiel, and after 1941 also in the form of the increasingly powerful US Army) and the commitment of the bulk of German forces to the Eastern Front. Therefore the lessons in maneuver warfare the French learned so well were somewhat lost on the British. Instead they resolved never to repeat the experiences of facing Panthers and Tigers in the Normandy bocage country with short 75mm-gunned Shermans, and for the nearly four decades after World War 2 British tanks were the most heavily gunned and protected in the world, although somewhat lacking in mobility.

This proved to be a sound decision. As the Arab-Israeli Wars amply demonstrated, battlefield mobility was less a function of vehicle speed than of its protection. The well protected Centurions tended to be some of the most mobile weapon systems on the battlefield. Moreover, the low speed and operating radius did not prevent the Israeli Defense Force from implementing a very effective maneuver doctrine against Arab forces equipped with faster Soviet-made tanks. The British Army followed the 105mm-gunned Centurion with a 120mm-armed Chieftain (ironically, even as the very successful British L7 105mm gun was fast becoming the NATO standard for MBT armament), and then the Challenger. While powerful, the Chieftain and the Challenger were not as successful as the Centurion, with the Chieftain being marred (at least initially) by mechanical unreliability, and the Challenger suffering from inferior fire controls that caused the poor showing of these tanks in the Canadian Army Trophy competitions. Moreover, with the introduction of German and US tanks armed with the Rheinmetall 120mm smoothbore tank gun (which became the new NATO standard), the British firepower and protection advantage faded.

Doctrine-wise, the British Army tended to rely more on positional tactics in order to exploit the firepower superiority of their tanks. Although their doctrine was not as centralized as that of the Soviet Army, it was also not as oriented toward speed and maneuver as those of the Bundeswehr and the French Army.

Doctrine and Troop Quality
BAOR: Veteran, Very High Morale
Other regular forces: Veteran, High Morale
Parachute Regiment, Royal Marines: Elite, Very High Morale
Territorials: Regular, High Morale
Doctrine: Due to the cohesive character of British regiments, they are treated as operating under Decentralized doctrine, while higher HQs operate under Centralized doctrine.
HQ Rating: 5
HQ Command Radius: 8 (Regiment), 16 (Division)

Cross-attachments:
Battalions may exchange companies. Companies within a battalion may exchange platoons, or platoon(s) from one company in a battalion may be attached to other company(s) in the same battalion.


Unit Organization

Size codes: s=small, m=medium, l=large; p=platoon, c=company, b=battery

Battalions

Armoured Regiment: 4 Armoured Squadrons (mc), 2 Scorpion Reconnaissance Platoons (mp), 3 FV-438/Swingfire Platoons (sp)

Reconnaissance Regiment (BAOR): 4 Reconnaissance Squadrons, each with: 3 Scimitar Platoons (mp), 1 Striker Platoon (mp), 1 Spartan Platoon (mp)

Reconnaissance Regiment (UK type 1): 3 Squadrons, each with 2 Scorpion Platoons (mp), 2 Scimitar Platoons (mp), 1 Spartan Platoon (mp)

Reconnaissance Regiment (UK type 2): 1 Squadron with 4 Scorpion Platoons (mp), 1 Spartan Platoon (mp), 1 Recon Infantry Platoon (mp); 2 Squadrons with 4 Fox Platoons (mp), 1 Spartan Platoon (mp),

Infantry Battalion: 3 Infantry Companies (mc), 3 APC or IFV Companies (mc), 2 81mm Mortar Batteries (sb) [Land Rover], 6 Milan ATGM Platoons (mp) [Land Rover], 2 Fox Armored Car Reconnaissance Platoons (mp)

Infantry Battalion (light role): As above, but only 2 Milan Platoons, Land Rovers replacing Fox armored cars, and no APCs ro IFVs.

Royal Marine Commando: 3 Commando Companies (mc),  2 81mm Mortar Batteries (sb) [Land Rover], 4 Milan ATGM Platoons (mp) [Land Rover], 2 Land Rover Reconnaissance Platoons (mp)

Artillery Battalion: 3 Batteries (mb)

Brigades

Armoured Brigade: 3 or 4 battalions, including 1-2 Armoured Regiments and 1-2 Infantry Battalions mounted on tracked APCs or IFVs.

Infantry Brigade: 0-1 Reconnaissance Regiment (UK-type), 3-5 Infantry Battalions (mounted on trucks or wheeled APCs).

Commando Brigade: 2 Commando Regiments, 1 Artillery Battery [towed 105mm]

Airborne Brigade: 3 Parachute Battalions, 1 Reconnaissance Regiment (UK-type), 1 Artillery Battalion [towed 105mm]

Divisions

Armoured Division: 3 Armoured Brigades, 3 Artillery Battalions [3 M109 Artillery Battalions], 1 Air Defense Company [9 Blowpipe or Javelin SAM platoons (sp)], 1 Army Aviation Regiment [2 Lynx Flights (sc), 4 Gazelle Platoons [mp]

Infantry Division: 3 Infantry Brigades, 3 Artillery Battalions [1 towed FH-70 155mm howitzer battalions, 1 towed 105mm Light Gun battalion]

Artillery Division: 2 M107 Battalions [each with 2 batteries (mb)], 1 M110 Battalion [2 batteries (mb)], 2 Air Defense Battalions [each with 6 Rapier Platoons (mp) and 6 Tracked Rapier Platoons (mp)]

Unit Data:

Main Battle Tanks

<>
Challenger 1 Tank Squadron
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
8t
13**
G (a/g): 11

HE (a/g): M
HW: 2 [4]
--
TI

Chieftain Mk5 Tank Squadron
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
6t
10 (10* for Stilbrew)
G (g/g): 11

HE (g/g): M
HW: 2 [4]
--
IR/II

APCs and IFVs

 MCV-80 Warrior IFV Company
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
10t
5
G (b/g): 6

HW: 2 [4]
--
II. Transports infantry up to own size.

 FV-438 APC Company
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
8t
2
--

HW: 2 [4]
--
-Transports infantry up to own size.


 Saxon APC Company
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
8w
1
--
HW: 2 [4]
--
Transports infantry up to own size.

Infantry
<>
Infantry Company (L1A1 SLR-equipped)
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
2f
0
CC: 4

SA: 2
HW: 2 [4]
CC: 3
--
II

Infantry Company (SA-80-equipped)
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mc
2f
0
CC: 4

SA: 2
HW (mp): 2 [4]
CC: 4
--
II


Reconnaissance

Scimitar Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8t
2
G (b/g): 5

HW: 2 [4]
--
II

Scorpion Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8t
2
G (b/g): 8*

HE (b/g): L
HW: 2 [4]
--
II

Spartan Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8t
2
--


HW: 2 [4]
--
II, GSR


Fox Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8w
1
G (b/g): 5

HW: 2 [4]
--
II

Land-Rover Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
sp
8w
0
--

HW: 2 [4]
--
II

Anti-Tank

 Striker Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8t
2
M (b): 14* [10] --]
--
II

Milan ATGM Platoon [truck-borne]
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
sp
2f/8w
0
M (g): 12* [6]

--
--
TI

Artillery

M109 155mm SP Howitzer Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb
6t
1
G (b/b): 10*

HE (b): H
HW: 2 [4]
HE: H [36]


M110 203mm SP Howitzer Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb
6t
0
G (b/b): 10*

HE (b): VH
HE: VH [40]



M107 175mm SP Howitzer Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb
6t
0
--

HE (b): VH
HE: VH [60]



FH-70 155mm Towed Howitzer Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb
8lw
0/-2
G (b/b): 10*
HE (b): H
HE: H [48]

105mm Light Gun Towed Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb 8w 0/-2
G (b/b): 8*

-- HE: M [32]

81mm Mortar Battery
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mb 2f or 8w 0
--

-- HE: L [10]

Anti-Aircraft

 Rapier AA Missile Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8lw
0
--

--

-- AA Missile: (a) [12]


Blowpipe AA Missile Platoon [Land-Rover]
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8w
0
--

--

-- AA Missile: (b) [10]

Blowpipe AA Missile Platoon [Land-Rover]
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
8w
0
--

--

-- AA Missile: (g) [10]

Helicopters

Lynx/Tow Helicopter Flight
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
sc
H
0/0
M (g): 14* [10]
--
--
II

Gazelle Platoon
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
sc
H
0/0
--
-- --
II

Puma Transport Helicopter Squadron
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
sc or mc
H
0/0
--
--
--
Lift: troops x2 own size, jeep-type vehicles up to own size

Aircraft

 Harrier GR.3 Attack Aircraft Flight
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
A
0/2
G: 3

HW: 2
HE: VH (0)



 Jaguar Attack Aircraft Flight
Size
Move
Protection
AT
AP
Indirect
Special
mp
A
0/2
G: 3

HW: 2
HE: VH (+1)


Mike J.
=
====
The J-8 Shop
Wargame Rules, Variants, and Orders of Battle
http://www.geocities.com/pmj6/

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