Sniper Measure Human Body

1. Urban Guerrilla Warfare a. General. The role of the sniper in an urban guerrilla environment is to dcminate the area of operations by delivery of selective, aimed fire against specific targets as authorized by local commanders. Usually this authorization only ccmes when such targets are about to employ firearms or other lethal weapons against the peace keeping force or innocent civilians. The sniper's other role, and almost equally important, is the gathering and reporting of intelligence.

b. Tasks. Within the above role, sane specific tasks which may be assigned include:

(1) When authorized by local commanders, engaging dissidents/ urban guerrillas when involved in hijacking, kidnapping, holding hostages, etc.

(2) Engaging urban guerrilla snipers as opportunity targets or as part of a deliberate clearance operation.

(3) Covertly occupying concealed positions to observe selected areas.

{4) Recording and reporting all suspicious activity in the area of observation.

(5) Assisting in coordinating the activities of other elements by taking advantage of hidden observation posts.

(6) Providing protection for other elements of the peace keeping force, including fireman, repair crews, etc.

c. Limitations. In urban guerrilla operations there are several limiting factors that snipers would not encounter in a conventional war:

(1) There is no FEBA and therefore no "No Mans Land" in which to operate. Snipers can therefore expect to operate in entirely hostile surroundings in most circumstances.

(2) The enemy is covert, perfectly camouflaged among and totally indistinguishable from the everyday populace that surrounds him.

(3) In areas where confrontation between peace keeping forces and the urban guerrillas takes place, the guerrilla dominates the ground entirely from the point of view of continued presence and observation. Every yard of ground is known to them; it is ground of their own choosing. Anything approximating a conventional stalk to and occupation of, a hide is doomed to failure.

(4) Although the sniper is not subject to the same difficult conditions as he is in conventional war, he is subject to other pressures.

These include not only legal and political restraints but also the requirement to kill or wound without the motivational stimulus normally associated with the battlefield.

(5) Normally in conventional war, the sniper needs no clearance to fire his shot. In urban guerrilla warfare, the sniper must make every effort possible to determine in each case the need to open fire and that it constitutes reasonable/minimum force under circumstances.

d. Methods of Employment

{1) Sniper Cordons/Periphery 0. P. *s

(a) The difficulties to be overcome in placing snipers in heavily populated, hostile areas and for them to remain undetected, are considerable. It is not impossible, but it requires a high degree of training, not only on the part of the snipers involved, but also of the supporting troops.

(b) To overcame the difficulties of detection and to maintain security during every day sniping operations, the aim should be to confuse the enemy. The peace keeping forces are greatly helped by the fact that most "trouble areas" are relatively small, usually not more than a few hundred yards in dimension. All can be largely dominated by a considerable number of carefully sited 0. P. 1 s around their peripheries.

(c) The urban guerrilla intelligence network will eventually establish the locations of the various 0. P. 1 s. By constantly changing the 0. P.'s which are in current use it is impossible for the terrorist to know exactly which are occupied. However, the areas to be covered by the O.P.'s remain fairly constant and the coordination of arcs of fire and observation must be controlled at a high level, usually battalion. It may be delegated to ccmpany level for specific operations.

(d) The number of O.P.'s required to successfully cordon an area is considerable. Hence, the difficulties of sustaining such an operation over a protracted period in the same area should not be under-estimated.

(2) Sniper Ambush

(a) In cases where intelligence is forth coning that a target will be in a specific place at a specific time, a sniper ambush is frequently a better alternative than a more cumbersome cordon operation.

{b) Close reconnaissance is easier than in normal operation as it can be carried out by the sniper as part of a normal patrol without party to its hide undetected. To place snipers in position undetected will require seme form of a deception plan. This often takes the form of a routine search operation in at least platoon strength. During the course of the search the snipers position themselves in their hide. They remain in position when the remainder of the force withdraws. This tactic is especially effective when carried out at night.

(c) Once in position the snipers must be prepared to remain for lengthy periods in the closest proximity to the enemy and their sympathizers.

{d) Their security is tenuous at best. Most urban O.P.'s have "dead spots" and this combined with the fact that special ambush positions are frequently out of direct observation by other friendly forces makes them highly susceptible to attack, especially from guerrillas armed with with explosives. The uncertainty about being observed on entry is a constant worry to the snipers. It can and does have a most disquieting effect on the sniper and underlines the need for highly trained men of stable character.

(e) If the ambush position cannot be directly supported from a permanent position, a "back up" force must be placed at immediate notice to extract the snipers after the ambush or in the event of compromise. Normally it must be assumed that after the ambush, the snipers cannot make their exit without assistance. They will be surrounded by large, extremely hostile crowds, consequently the "back up" force must not only be close at hand but also sufficient in size.

c. Urban Sniping Hide s/0.P.1s

(1) Selecting the Location. The selection of hides and O.P. positions demand great care. The over-riding requirement of a hide/0.P. position is for it to dcminate its area of responsibility.

(a) When selecting a suitable location there is always a tendency to go for height. In an urban operation this can be mistake. The greater the height attained, the more the sniper has to look out over an area and away fran his immediate surroundings. For example, if an O.P. were established on the 10th floor of an apartment building, to see a road beneath, the sniper would have to lean out of the window, which does little for the O.P.'s security. The locations of incidents that the sniper might have to deal with are largely unpredictable, but the ranges are usually relatively short. Consequently, an O.P. must aim to cover its immediate * surroundings as well as middle and far distances. In residential areas this is rarely possible as O.P.'s are forced off ground floor level by passing pedestrians. But generally it is not advisable to go above the passing pedestrians. But generally it is not advisable to go above the second floor, because to go higher greatly increases the dead space in front of the O.P. This is not a cardinal rule, however. Local conditions, such as being on a bus route, may force the sniper to go higher to avoid direct observation by passengers.

(b) In view of this weakness in local defense of urban O.P.rs, the principles of mutual support between O.P.'s assumes even greater importance. The need for mutual support is another reason for coordination and planning to take place at battalion level.

(c) The following are possible hide/O.P. locations:

(1) Old, derelict buildings. Special attention should be paid to the possibility of encountering booby traps. One proven method of detecting guerrilla booby traps is to notice if the locals (especially children) move in and about the building freely.

(2) Occupied houses. After careful observation of the inhabitants daily routine, snipers can move into occupied hemes and establish hides/O.P.s in the basement and attics. This method is used very successfully by the British in Northern Ireland.

(4) Schools and Churches. When using these as hide/O.P. locations, the snipers risk possible damage to what might already be strained public relations.

(5) Factories, sheds, garages.

(6) Basements and between floors in buildings. It is possible for the sniper team to locate themselves in these positions although there may be no window or readily usuahle firing port available. These locations require the sniper to remove bricks or stone without leaving any noticeable evidence outside of the building. To do this the sniper must carefully measure the width of the mortar around a selected brick /stone. He must then construct a frame exactly the size of the selected brick with the frame edges exactly the size of the surrounding mortar. He then carefully removes the brick from the wall and places it in his frame. The mortar is then crushed and glued to the frame so that it blends perfectly with the untouched mortar still in place. The brick/frame combination is then placed back into the wall. From the outside, nothing appears abnormal, while inside the sniper team has created an extremely difficult to detect firing port. Care must be taken however that when firing from this position dust does not get blown about by muzzle blast and that the brick/frame combination is iirmediately replaced. Another difficulty encountered with this position is that it offers a very restricted field of view.

{7) Rural areas from which urban areas can be observed.

{d) An ideal hide/0.P. should have the following characteristics:

(1) A secure and quiet approach route. This should, if possible, be free of garbage cans, crumbling walls, barking dogs and other .impediments.

(2) A secure entry and exit point. The more obvious and easily accessible entry/exit points are not necessarily the best as their constant use during subsequent relief of sniper teams may more readily lead to compromise.

(3) good arcs of observation. Restricted arcs are inevitable but the greater the arc the better.

(4) Security. These considerations have already been discussed above.

(5) Comfort. This is the lowest priority but never the less iirportant. Uncomfortable observation and firing positions can only be maintained for short periods. If there is no adequate relief from observation, O.P.s can rarely remain effective for more than a few hours.

(a) Before moving into the hide/0.P. the snipers must have the following information:

(1) The exact nature of the mission (i.e. observe, shoot, etc.)

(3) The local situation.

(4) Procedure and timing for entry.

(5) Emergency evacuation procedures.

(6) Radio procedures.

(7) Movement of any friendly troops.

(8) Procedure and timing for exit.

(9) Any special equipment needed.

(b) The well-tried and understood principle of remaining back from windows and other apertures when in buildings has a marked effect on the manning of O.P.s/hides. The field of view from the back of a roam through a window is limited. To enable a worthwhile area to be covered, two or even three men may have to observe at one time frcm different parts of the room.

{3) Special Equipment for Urban Hides/P.P. The following equipment may be necessary for construction of or use in the urban/0.P.

(b) Glass Cutter. To remove glass frcm windows.

(c) Suction Cups. To aid in removing glass.

{d) Rubber Headed Hammers. To use in construction of the hide with minimal noise.

(e) Skeleton Keys. To open locked doors.

(f) Pry Bars. To open jammed doors and windows.

(g) Padlocks. To lock doors near hide/O.P. entry and exit points.

2. Hostage Situations a. General. Snipers and ccmmanding officers must appreciate that even a good, well placed shot may not always result in the instantaneous death of a terrorist. Even the best sniper when armed with the best weapon and bullet combination cannot guarantee the desired results. Even an instantly fatal shot may not prevent the death of a hostage when muscle spasms in the terrorism's body trigger his weapon. As a rule then, the sniper should only be employed when all other means of moving the situation have been exhaus ted.

b. Accuracy Requirements

(1) The Naval Special Warfare Sniper Rifle is the finest combat sniper weapon in the world. When using the Lake City Ml 18 Match 7.62 mm ammunition it will constantly group to within one minute of angle or one inch at one hundred yards.

(2) Keeping this in mind, consider the size of the target in a hostage situation. Doctors all agree that the only place on a man, where if struck with a bullet instantaneous death will occur, is the head. (Generally, the normal human being will live 8-10 seconds after being shot directLy in the heart.) The entire head of a man is a relatively large target measuring approximately 7 inches in diameter. But in order to narrow the odds and be more positive of an instant killing shot the size of the target greatly reduces. The portion of the brain that controls all motor relex actions is located directly behind the eyes and runs qenerally from ear lobe to ear lobe and is roughly two inches wide. In reality then, the size of the snipers target is two inches not seven inches.

(3) By applying the windage and elevation rule, it is easy to see then that the average Seal sniper cannot and should not attempt to deliver an instantly killing head shot beyond 200 yards. To require him to do so, asks him to do sane thing the rifle and ammunition combination available to him cannot do.

c. Position Selection. Generally the selection of a firing position for a hostage situation is not much different from selecting a firing position for any other form of ccmbat. The same guidelines and rules apply. Remember, the terrain and situation will dictate your choice of firing positions. However, there are several peculiar considerations the sniper must remember:

(1) Although the sniper should only be used as a last resort, he should be moved into his position as early as possible. This will enable him to precisely estimate his ranges, postively identify both the hostages and the terrorist and select alternate firing positions for use if the situation should change.

(2) If the situation should require firing through glass, the sniper should know two things:

{a) That when the Mils ammunition penetrates glass, in most cases the copper jacket is stripped off its lead core and fragments. These fragments will injure or kill should they hit either the hostage or the terrorist. The fragments show no standard pattern but randcmly fly in a cone shaped pattern much like shot from a shotgun. The lead core of the bullet does continue to fly in a straight line. Even when the glass is angled to as much as 45° the lead core will not show any signs of deflection, (back 6 feet from the point of impact with the glass).

(b) That when the bullet impacts with the glass, the glass will shatter and explode back into the room. The angle of the bullet impacting with the glass has absolutely no bearing on the direction of the flight of the shattered glass. The shattered glass will always fly perpendicular to the pane of the glass.

d. Command and Control

(1) Once the decision has been made by the commander to employ the sniper, all carmand and control of his actions should pass to the sniper team leader. At no time should the sniper have to fire on scmeone's cormand. He should be given clearance to fire and then he and he alone should decide exactly when.

(2) If more than one sniper team is used to engage one or more hostages it is imperative that the rule above applies to all teams. But it will be necessary for the snipers to communicate with each other. The most reliable method of accomplishing this is to establish a "land line" or TA-312 phone loop much like a gun loop used in artillery battery firing positions. This enables all teams to communicate with all the others without confusion about frequencies, radio procedure, etc.

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