Planning And Preparation Of A Sniper Mission

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PURPOSE. The purpose of this lesson plan is to ensure that all Special Warfare scout snipers pocess the ability to plan, prepare and carry out a assigned sniper mission.

INTRODUCTION:

All aspects of planning and preparation of a sniper mission are contained in this lesson plan, from the sniper employment officer's responsibilities to the sniper team's responsibilities in planning, preparing, and executing a mission. A sniper patrol is always "tailored" for the mission it is to execute.

1. DEFINITION. A sniper mission is a detachment of one or more sniper teams performing an assigned mission of engaging selected targets and targets of opportunity, and collecting and reporting information, or a combination of these, which contribute to the acccmplishment of Naval Special Warfare's mission.

2. SNIPER EMPLOYMENT OFFICER. The responsibilities of the employment officer (usually XO, OPs, Intelligence Officer, SEAL platoon ccmnanders) are:

a. Issuance of necessary orders to the sniper team leader.

b. Coordination.

c. Assignment of patrol missions of employment.

d. Briefing team leaders.

e. Debriefing team leaders.

f. Advising the supported unit corntiander on the best means to employ and utilize his sniper teams.

g. The most important responsibility.

(1) The sniper employment officer is directly responsible to the conmanding officer of what every Special Warfare Team he is attached to for the operational efficiency of his sniper teams.

NOTE: IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE SNIPER EMPLOYMENT OFFICER TO FAMILIARIZE HIMSELF WITH THE SNIPER TEAM'S CAPABILITIES AND LIMITATIONS. IT IS THE SNIPER TEAM LEADER'S RESPONSIBILITY TO ENSURE THE SNIPER EMPLOYMENT OFFICER IS WELL ADVISED ON THESE CAPABILITIES AND LIMITATIONS. THE TEAM LEADER IS ALSO RESPONSIBLE FOR MAKING RECOMMENDATIONS AND TO GUIDE THE SNIPER EMPLOYMENT OFFICER ON THE CORRECT MEIHOD OF EMPLOYMENT OF ALL SNIPER TEAMS UNDER HIS CONTROL.

3. ISSUANCE OF NECESSARY ORDERS TO THE SNIPER TEAM LEADERS. If the sniper employment officer is not available, such as when sniper teams are attached away from their assigned command, the sniper team leader assumes the sniper employment officer's responsibilities. Necessary orders given to the sniper team leader are as follows:

a. Orders providing the sniper team leader with the necessary information, instructions, guidance to enable the sniper team or teams to plan, prepare, and conduct the patrol mission. This information can be given orally and on an informal basis, or as a standard patrol operation order depending on the time available.

b. The responsibility for all detailed planning, when practical, should be given to the sniper team leader. The mission should be described in only the most general terms by the sniper employment officer or the supported unit commander. The routes, targets, locations of firing positions, detailed mission planning, fire support planning and coordination should be the responsibility of the sniper team leader. When he has time, he should prepare and issue, to the observer, or if any other sniper team personnel are attached, a detailed patrol order to ensure that he has planned for every contingency.

4. COORDINATION. Coordination is a continuing, joint effort by the sniper employment officer and sniper teams. The three general areas of coordination are between the:

a. Staff and other staff of other units.

b. Staff and sniper team leaders and units immediately affected by the patrol operation.

(1) The reccfnmendations for sniper missions to be conducted and the sniper teams to be provided are submitted to the commanding officer for his approval.

(2) The ccrnmander may, in his briefing to his staff, inform the sniper employment officer or sniper team leader that snipers may be needed in the overa11 "big picture."

{3) A sniper patrol is assigned one major mission. The essential tasks required to accomplish the mission are assigned to both the sniper teams and elements of the supporting units.

(4) Whether the sniper mission be a specific mission or a general mission, it must be clearly stated, thoroughly understood, and with the CAPABILITIES of the sniper team.

5. SUPERVISION. Supervision is provided by the sniper employment officer in planning, preparation, and rehearsals, giving the sniper team leaders the benefit of their own training and experience.

6. BRIEFING TEAM LEADERS. Once the commander has stated the need for snipers the sniper employment officer, if available, must brief the sniper team(s)

on the assigned mission.

7. RECEIVING THE ORDER. During the issuance of the order {briefing by the sniper employment officer, united ccmmander or the supported unit ccmriander), the sniper team leader listens carefully to ensure that he clearly understands all information, instructions, and guidance. He takes notes for later planning. After the briefing, he asks questions if points are not clearly understood or not covered.

a. If supporting a SEAL platoon commander, it is the sniper team leader1 s responsibility to advise the SEAL platoon commander of the proper and optional means of sniper employment to the best accomplish the mission.

8. PATROL STEPS

NOTE: WHEN THE SNIPER TEAM LEADER IS PLANNING AND ORGANIZING THE PATROL, HE SHOULD SOLICIT INPUT FROM THE OTHER SNIPER TEAM MEMBERS TO ENSURE THAT THE OPERATION IS WELL EXECUTED.

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