backbrief - A briefing by subordinates to the commander to review how subordinates intend to accomplish their mission. This is a commander to commander or one on one briefing. It takes two forms:1. After the operations order to ensure a subordinateÁs understanding of the mission. 2. When a single commander briefs how he will accomplish the mission. (See also confirmation brief.) See FM 101-5
backhaul - The use of transportation assets that, having deposited their primary loads, are available to remove personnel and materials from that location to another location en route to their return destination. See FMs 19-1 and 100-10.
ballistic missile (JP 1-02, NATO) - Any missile which does not rely upon aerodynamic surfaces to produce lift and consequently follows a ballistic trajectory when thrust is terminated.
barrage fire (JP 1-02, NATO) - Fire which is designed to fill a volume of space or area rather than aimed specifically at a given target. (See also call for fire.) See FM 6-series.
barrage jamming (JP 1-02) - Simultaneous electromagnetic jamming over a broad band of frequencies. (See also jamming.) See FMs 34-1 and 34-10.
barrier (JP 1-02) - A coordinated series of obstacles designed or employed to channel, direct, restrict, delay, or stop the movement of an opposing force and to impose additional losses in personnel, time, and equipment on the opposing force. Barriers can exist naturally, be man-made, or a combination of both. (See also abatis, countermobility operations, and obstacle.) See FM 5-102.
base (JP 1-02, NATO) - 1. A locality from which operations are projected or supported. 2. An area or locality containing installations which provide logistic or other support. (DOD) 3. Home airfield or home carrier. (Army) - A grouping of units or activities within a defined, defensible perimeter with specific access control points and traffic control. All units or activities are under operational control of a single commander for security operations. See FMs 100-10 and 100-15.
base cluster (JP 1-02) - In base defense operations, a collection of bases, geographically grouped for mutual protection and ease of command and control. (Army) - A grouping of bases designed to enhance the rear operations commander's span of control. Base clusters do not have a defined single perimeter or established access points for the whole cluster. All bases within the cluster are under operational control of a single commander for security operations. (See also base.) See FMs 71-100, 100-10, 100-15, and 100-16.
base cluster operations center (BCOC) (JP 1-02) - A command and control facility that serves as the base cluster commander's focal point for defense and security of the base cluster. (Army) - An austere command post established by the base cluster commander to coordinate security requirements between bases and conduct limited security operations. See FMs 71-100-1/2/3 and 100-15-1.
base defense(JP 1-02) - The local military measures, both normal and emergency, required to nullify or reduce the effectiveness of enemy attacks on, or sabotage of, a base, to ensure that the maximum capacity of its facilities is available to US forces.
base defense operations - The local military measures, both normal and emergency, required to nullify or reduce the effectiveness of enemy attacks on, or sabotage of, a base to ensure that the maximum capacity of its facilities is available to US forces. (See also base, base cluster, and defend.) See FMs 100-10 and 100-15.
base defense operations center (BDOC) (JP 1-02) - A command and control facility established by the base commander to serve as the focal point for base security and defense. It plans, directs, integrates, coordinates, and controls all base defense efforts, and coordinates and integrates into area security operations with the rear area operations center/rear tactical operations center. (Army) - An austere command post established by the base commander to plan, coordinate, and supervise base defense operations to ensure the protection of personnel, equipment, and resources from enemy attack. See FMs 71-100-1/2/3 and 100-15-1.
base defense reaction forces - Forces comprised of personnel or elements of units assigned to a specific base with the responsibility to rapidly bolster base defenses or react to an unforeseen threat. See FMs 71-100-1/2/3 and 100-15-1.
base defense status (Army) - A two-digit indicator determined by assessing the development of defenses coupled with the percentage of personnel manning the perimeter. The first digit is alphabetic (A-G) and corresponds to the development of the base defenses. The second digit is numeric (1-9) and corresponds to the percentage of soldiers physically manning the perimeter. See FMs 71-100, 71-100-1/2/3, 100-15, and 100-15-1.
base defense zone (BDZ) (JP 1-02) - An air defense zone established around an air base and limited to the engagement envelope of short-range air defense weapons systems defending that base. Base defense zones have specific entry, exit, and identification, friend or foe procedures established. (See also air defense and base defense.) See FMs 44-100 and 100-15.
base development (JP 1-02, NATO) - The improvement or expansion of the resources and facilities of an area or a location to support military operations. (See also base.) See FMs 100-10 and 100-15.
base element - See base unit.
base of fire- Continuous and active suppression from a support-by-fire position of an objective (even though the enemy has not shown himself) to reduce or eliminate the enemy's capability to interfere by fire and movement with an assaulting unit. It may be provided by a single weapon or a grouping of weapon systems. (See also overwatch and support by fire). See FMs 7-7, 7-20, and 71-123.
base unit (JP1-02) - Unit or organization in a tactical operation around which a movement or maneuver is planned and performed. See FMs 7-7 and 7-20.
basic load (JP 1-02, NATO) -The quantity of supplies required to be on hand within, and which can be moved by, a unit or formation. It is expressed according to the wartime organization of the unit or formation and maintained at the prescribed levels. (Army) - The quantity of supplies and ammunition stored and carried under an organization's control that is determined by a higher headquarters on the basis of the mission and analysis of the threat. See FMs 6-20, 7-7, 7-20, 71-123, and 100-10.
battalion task force - 1. Based upon mission, a temporary grouping of units under one commander formed to carry out a specific operation or mission. 2. A semipermanent organization of units under one commander, formed for the purpose of carrying out a continuing specific task. 3. A combat arms battalion-sized unit consisting of a battalion headquarters, at least one assigned company-sized element, and at least one attached company-sized element from another combat arm or combat support unit. (See also task force(TF) and task organization.) See FM 71-123.
battle - A series of related tactical engagements that last longer than an engagement, involve larger forces, and could affect the course of the campaign. They occur when division, corps, or army commanders fight for significant objectives. (See also campaign, engagement, and major operation.) See FM 100-5.
battle command (BC) (Army) - The art of battle decision making and leading. It includes controlling operations and motivating soldiers and their organizations into action to accomplish missions. Battle command includes visualizing the current state and a future state, then formulating concepts of operations to get from one to the other at least cost. It also includes assigning missions, prioritizing and allocating resources, selecting the critical time and place to act, and knowing how and when to make adjustments during the fight. See FM 100-5.
battle damage assessment (BDA) (JP 1-02) (NATO: damage assessment) - The timely and accurate estimate of damage resulting from the application of military force, either lethal or nonlethal, against a predetermined objective. Battle damage assessment can be applied to the employment of all types of weapon systems (air, ground, naval, and special forces weapon systems) throughout the range of military operations. It is primarily an intelligence responsibility with required inputs and coordination from the operators. It is composed of physical damage assessment, functional damage assessment, and target system assessment. See FMs 34-1, 71-100, and 100-15.
battle damage assessment and repair (BDAR) (NATO: battle damage repair) - Any expedient action that returns a damaged item or assembly to a mission-capable or limited mission-capable condition. Repairs are often temporary. (See also cannibalize.) See FMs 63-2 and 100-9.
battle drill - Standardized actions made in response to common battlefield occurrences. They are designed for rapid reaction situations. See FMs 7-7, 7-8, 7-10, 17-15, and 17-98.
battlefield circulation control (BCC) (Army) - A military police mission involving route reconnaissance and surveillance, main supply route regulation enforcement, straggler and refugee control, intelligence collecting and reporting, and information dissemination. See FM 19-1.
battlefield coordination detachment (BCE) (JP 1-02) - An Army liaison provided by the Army component commander to the Air Operations Center (AOC) and/or to the component designated by the joint force commander to plan, coordinate, and deconflict air operations. The battlefield coordination element processes Army requests for tactical air support, monitors and interprets the land battle situation for the AOC, and provides the necessary interface for exchange of current intelligence and operational data. See FMs 71-100, 100-13 and 100-15.
battlefield framework - The overall structure of the battlefield which, at the tactical level of war, consists of four interrelated concepts: area of interest, battlespace, area of operations, and a specific organization of tactical battlefields. This battlefield framework applies to both linear and noncontiguous operations. (See also area of influence, area of interest, area of operations, and battlespace.) See FM 100-5.
battlefield information coordination center (BICC) (Army) - A subsection of the battalion and brigade S2 section. It provides detailed control and coordination of intelligence collection, production, and dissemination, thus freeing the S2 from routine tasks so that he can better manage the overall intelligence effort.
battlefield operating systems (BOS) (Army) - The major functions performed on the battlefield that facilitate the integration, coordination, preparation, and execution of successful combined arms operations to successfully execute Army operations (battles and engagements) and accomplish military objectives directed by the operational commander. The BOS include intelligence, maneuver, fire support, mobility and survivability, air defense, combat service support, and command and control. (See also combat functions and principles of war.) See FM 100-5.
battlefield organization - The arranging and synchronizing of battlefield activities throughout the area of operations to accomplish the simultaneous operations deep, close, and in the rear. (See also close operations, deep operations, rear operations, and simultaneous attack in depth.) See FM 100-5.
battlefield visualization (Army) - The process whereby the commander develops a clear understanding of his current state with relation to the enemy and environment, envisions a desired end state, and then subsequently visualizes the sequence of activity that will move his force from its current state to the end state.
battle handover - A designated point (phase line) on the ground where responsibility transitions from the stationary force to the moving force and vice versa. It is within direct fire range and observed indirect fire range of the stationary force. (See also support by fire.) See FMs 17-95, 71-100, 71-123, and 100-15.
battle position (BP) - 1. A defensive location oriented on the most likely enemy avenue of approach from which a unit may defend. Such units can be as large as battalion task forces and as small as platoons. A unit assigned a BP is located within the general outline of the BP. A battle position graphic control measure may be used independently or in combination with sectors. Security, combat support, and combat service support forces may operate outside a BP. 2. For attack helicopters, an area designated in which they can maneuver and fire into a designated engagement area or engage targets of opportunity. (See also defend.) See FMs 1-112, 7-8, 7-20, 7-30, and 71-123.
battlespace (Army) - The conceptual physical volume in which the commander seeks to dominate the enemy. It expands and contracts in relation to the commander's ability to acquire and engage the enemy, or can change as the commander's vision of the battlefield changes. It encompasses three dimensions and is influenced by the operational dimensions of time, tempo, depth, and synchronization. It is not assigned by a higher commander nor is it constrained by assigned boundaries. (See also battlefield framework.) See FM 100-5.
beach capacity (JP 1-02, NATO) - An estimate, expressed in terms of measurement tons, or weight tons, of cargo that may be unloaded over a designated strip of shore per day.
beachhead (JP 1-02) - A designated area on a hostile or potentially hostile shore that, when seized and held, ensures the continuous landing of troops and materiel, and provides maneuver space requisite for subsequent projected operations ashore. (See also amphibious operation.) See FMs 31-12, 71-100, 71-100-2, 100-5, and JP 3-02.
beaten zone(JP 1-02) - The area on the ground upon which the cone of fire falls. See FMs 6-20, 7-8, and 7-90.
begin morning civil twilight (BMCT)- Begins when the sun is halfway between beginning morning and nautical twilight and sunrise, when there is enough light to see objects clearly with the unaided eye. At this time, light intensification devices are no longer effective, and the sun is six degrees below the eastern horizon.
begin morning nautical twilight (BMNT) - The start of that period where, in good conditions and in the absence of other illumination, enough light is available to identify the general outlines of ground objects and conduct limited military operations. Light intensification devices are still effective and may have enhanced capabilities. At this time, the sun is 12 degrees below the eastern horizon. (See also twilight.)
beleaguered - See missing.
be-prepared mission (Army) - A mission assigned to a unit that might be executed. It is generally a contingency mission which will be executed because something planned has or has not been successful. In planning priorities, it is planned after any on-order missions. (See also on-order mission.) See FM 101-5.
beseiged - See missing.
biological agent (JP 1-02) - A microorganism that causes disease in personnel, plants, or animals or causes the deterioration of materiel. See FMs 3-9 and 8-10-7.
biological operation (JP 1-02, NATO) - Employment of biological agents to produce casualties in personnel or animals and damage to plants or materiel; or defense against such employment. See FM 3-9.
biosurveillance - The systematic observation of an area of operations for biological hazards. This includes the use of biodetectors, intelligence, LB teams, and other resources.
black list (JP 1-02) - An official counterintelligence listing of actual or potential enemy collaborators, sympathizers, intelligence suspects, and other persons whose presence menaces the security of friendly forces.
black propaganda (JP 1-02) - Propaganda which purports to emanate from a source other than the true one. (See also information warfare (IW).)
blast effect (JP 1-02) - Destruction of or damage to structures and personnel by the force of an explosion on or above the surface of the ground. Blast effect may be contrasted with the cratering and ground-shock effects of a projectile or charge that goes off beneath the surface. See FM 5-250 and JPs 3-12.2, and 3-12.3.
blind transmission (JP 1-02) - Any transmission of information that is made without expectation of acknowledgement.
blister agent (JP 1-02, NATO) - A chemical agent which injures the eyes and lungs, and burns or blisters the skin. It is also called a vesicant agent. See FM 3-9.
block - 1. A tactical task assigned to a unit that requires it to deny the enemy access to a given area or to prevent enemy advance in a given direction or an avenue of approach. It may be for a specified time. Units assigned this mission may have to retain terrain and accept decisive engagement. 2. An obstacle effect that integrates fire planning and obstacle effort to stop an attacker on a specific avenue of approach or to prevent an enemy from exiting an engagement area. (See also contain, disrupt, fix, and turn.) See FMs 5-71-100, 5-102, and 90-7.
blocking position (JP 1-02, NATO) - A defensive position so sited as to deny the enemy access to a given area or to prevent his advance in a given direction. (See also battle position (BP), block, defend, and strongpoint (SP).) See FMs 5-102, 5-103, 7-20, 71-100, and 71-123.
blood agent (JP 1-02, NATO) - A chemical compound, including the cyanide group, that affects bodily functions by preventing the normal utilization of oxygen by body tissues. See FM 3-9.
blood chit (JP 1-02) - A small cloth chart depicting an American Flag and a statement in several languages to the effect that anyone assisting the bearer to safety will be rewarded. (See also civil affairs.) See FM 1-111.
blowback (JP 1-02, NATO) - 1. Escape, to the rear and under pressure, of gases formed during the firing of the weapon. Blowback may be caused by a defective breech mechanism, a ruptured cartridge case, or a faulty primer. 2. Type of weapon operation in which the force of expanding gases acting to the rear against the face of the bolt furnishes all the energy required to initiate the complete cycle of operation. A weapon which employs this method of operation is characterized by the absence of any breech-lock or bolt-lock mechanism. (Army) - A recoilless weapon is characterized by this type functioning. See FMs 7-8, 17-12, and 23-1.
bogey (JP 1-02) - An air contact which is unidentified but assumed to be enemy. (Not to be confused with unknown.) (See also hostile criteria.) See FMs 44-100 and 100-103.
booby trap (JP 1-02, NATO) - An explosive or a nonexplosive device or other material deliberately placed to cause casualties when an apparently harmless object is disturbed or a normally safe act is performed. (Army) - A device designed to kill or maim an unsuspecting person who disturbs an apparently harmless object or performs a normally safe act.
bound (JP 1-02, NATO) - 1. In land warfare, a single movement, usually from cover to cover, made by troops often under enemy fire. (DOD) 2. Distance covered in one movement by a unit that is advancing by bounds. (See also movement technique.) See FMs 1-111, 7-8, 7-20, 17-95, and 71-123.
boundary (JP 1-02) - A line which delineates surface areas for the purpose of facilitating coordination and deconfliction of operations between adjacent units, formations, or areas. (Army) - 1. A control measure used to define the right, left, rear, and forward limits of an area of operation. 2. A control measure normally drawn along identifiable terrain features and used to delineate areas of tactical responsibility between adjacent units and between higher headquarters to the rear of subordinate units. Within their boundaries, units may maneuver within the overall plan without close coordination with neighboring units unless otherwise restricted. Direct fire may be placed across boundaries on clearly identified enemy targets without prior coordination, provided friendly forces are not endangered. Indirect fire also may be used after prior coordination. (See also airhead, airspace coordination area(ACA), area of operations (AO), and bridgehead.)
bounding overwatch - A movement technique used when contact with enemy forces is expected. The unit moves by bounds. One element is always halted in position to overwatch another element while it moves. The overwatching element is positioned to support the moving unit by fire or fire and movement. (See also movement technique and overwatch.) See FMs 7-8, 7-20, and 71-123.
box formation - A unit formation with subordinate elements arranged in a box or square or two elements up and two back. It is a flexible formation that provides equal fire power in all directions. It is generally used when the enemy location is known. This formation can cause 50 percent of force to be decisively engaged at the same time, therefore limiting the combat power available to maneuver against an enemy. (See also column formation, echelon formation, formation, line formation, movement formation, vee formation, and wedge formation.) See FMs 7-7, 7-8, and 7-20.
bracketing (JP 1-02, NATO) - A method of adjusting fire in which a bracket is established by obtaining an over and a short along the spotting line, and then successively splitting the bracket in half until a target hit or desired bracket is obtained. (See also call for fire.) See FMs 6-20 and 7-90.
branch (JP 1-02) - 1. A subdivision of any organization. 2. A geographically separate unit of an activity which performs all or part of the primary functions of the parent activity on a smaller scale. Unlike an annex, a branch is not merely an overflow addition. 3. An arm or service of the Army. (Army) - A contingency plan or course of action (an option built into the basic plan or course of action) for changing the mission, disposition, orientation, or direction of movement of the force to aid success of the operation based on anticipated events, opportunities, or disruptions caused by enemy actions and reactions as determined during the wargaming process. (See also operation order (OPORD), sequel, and wargaming.) See FMs 100-5 and 101-5.
breach - A tactical task where any means available are employed to break through or secure a passage through an enemy defense, obstacle, minefield, or fortification. (See also covert breach, deliberate breach, and in-stride breach.) See FMs 5-71-100 and 90-13-1.
breach force - A combined arms force task-organized with the maneuver and engineer forces necessary to reduce obstacles and create lanes through an obstacle to pass initial assault forces through the lanes. The force is typically equipped with demolitions or mine plows and rollers. When made up primarily of engineers, the force must also be organized with the maneuver forces necessary for local direct fire suppression and security. Breaching forces clear enemy trenches, bunkers, and foxholes, and create and hold open a breach in the enemy positions. During an attack of an enemy fortified position or strongpoint, the breaching forces are those elements charged with breaching obstacles along an avenue of approach. (See also assault force and support force.) See FMs 5-71-100 and 90-13-1.
break-bulk cargo - Cargo which is not shipped in a container. See FM 10-1.
breakout - An operation conducted by an encircled force to regain freedom of movement or contact with friendly units. It differs from other attacks only in that a simultaneous defense in other areas of the perimeter must be maintained. (See also encirclement, follow and support, main body, rear guard, and rupture.) See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 71-100, 71-100-2, and 71-123.
breakthrough - A rupturing of the enemy's forward defenses that occurs as a result of a penetration. A breakthrough permits the passage of an exploitation force. (See also attack, exploitation, and pursuit.) See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 71-100, 71-100-2, and 71-123.
brevity code (JP 1-02, NATO) - A code which provides no security but which has as its sole purpose the shortening of messages rather than the concealment of their content. See FM 101-5. Appendix F
bridgehead (JP 1-02) - An area of ground held or to be gained on the enemy's side of an obstacle. (Army) - In river crossing operations, an area on the enemy's side of the water obstacle that is large enough to accommodate the majority of the crossing force, has adequate terrain to permit defense of the crossing sites, provides security of crossing forces from enemy direct fire, and provides a base for continuing the attack. (See also airhead and beachhead.) See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 71-100, 71-100-2, 71-123, and 90-13.
bridgehead force - A force that assaults across a river to secure the enemy side of a river (the bridgehead) to allow the buildup and passage of a breakout force during river crossing operations. See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 71-100, 71-100-2, 71-123, and 90-13.
bridgehead line (JP 1-02, NATO) - The limit of the objective area in the development of the bridgehead. (See also bridgehead and crossing force.) See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 71-100, 71-100-2, 71-123, and 90-13. 3-17
brigade support area (BSA) (Army) - A designated area in which combat service support elements from division support command and corps support command provide logistic support to a brigade. The forward support battalion (FSB) manages the terrain and unit locations. Examples of units located in the BSA are FSB command post (CP), brigade rear CP, FSB supply company CP, class I, II, IV, and VII points, ammunition transfer point, forward support medical company, class VIII point, medical clearing station, air defense artillery battery (-), and forward signal platoon (-). See FMs 7-30, 8-10-1, and 63-20.
broadcast intelligence - The dissemination of intelligence and targeting information to multiple terminals at multiple echelons down to brigade level simultaneously to provide a common intelligence picture at all those echelons. This eliminates bottlenecks inherent in point-to-point communications. See FMs 34-1, 71-100, and 100-15.
buffer zone - A defined area controlled by a peace operations force from which disputing or belligerent forces have been excluded. A buffer zone is formed to create an area of separation between disputing or belligerent forces and reduce the risk of renewed conflict. It is also called area of separation in some United Nations operations. (See also zone of separation (ZOS).)
buildup (JP 1-02, NATO) - The process of attaining prescribed strength of units and prescribed levels of vehicles, equipment, stores, and supplies. Also may be applied to the means of accomplishing this process. See FMs 100-15 and 100-17.
built-up area - A concentration of structures, facilities, and population, such as villages, cities, and towns. See FMs 7-8, 7-20, 7-30, 71-100-2, 71-123, 90-10, and 90-10-1.
bulk cargo (JP 1-02) - That which is generally shipped in volume where the transportation conveyance is the only external container; such as liquids, ore, or grain. (Army) - Cargo with dimensions less than oversized cargo and cargo that fits on a 463L aircraft pallet. See FMs 55-10 and 100-10.
bulk petroleum product (JP 1-02, NATO) - A liquid petroleum product transported by various means and stored in tanks or containers having an individual fill capacity greater than 250 liters. See FMs 10-67, 63-2, 63-20, 63-21, and 100-10.
bulk storage (JP 1-02) - 1. Storage in a warehouse of supplies and equipment in large quantities, usually in original containers, as distinguished from bin storage. 2. Storage of liquids, such as petroleum products in tanks, as distinguished from drum or packaged storage. (See also bulk cargo and bulk petroleum product.) See FMs 63-2, 63-20, 63-21, and 100-10.
bump plan - In movement, a plan that describes in detail which individuals and equipment in each designated load or chalk has priority over the others. This plan is used when the means of transportation (truck, helicopter, airplane, or ship) cannot carry all of a particular load. (See also chalk.) See FMs 71-100-3 and 90-4.
bypass - A tactical task that involves maneuvering around an obstacle, position, or enemy force to maintain the momentum of advance. Bypassed obstacles and enemy forces are reported to higher headquarters. See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 17-95, 71-100, 71-123, and 100-15. 3-25.
bypass criteria - A measure during the conduct of an offensive operation established by higher headquarters that specifies the conditions and size under which enemy units and contact may be avoided. See FMs 7-20, 7-30, 17-95, 71-100, 71-123, and 100-15.
|Updated 27 July 1997.|
Table of Contents
Operational Terms Index.