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Tactical Operations Orders

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1 Tactical Operations Orders
References: FM 7-8

2 What is the OPORD format used for?
From FM 7-8: “ The leader briefs his OPORD orally from notes that follow the five paragraph format…” The OPORD format is a guide to help you the leader remember what all you should be thinking about and planning for. Not all sections of the format will apply to all operations

Task Organization: Explain how the unit is organized for the operation. SITUATION a. Enemy forces: (1) Disposition, Composition, and Strength (2) Capabilities: What the enemy is able to do and how well can they do it Most probable course of action Weather and Terrain

4 (4) Weather and Terrain a. Light and Weather- Weather forecast, temperature high and low, humidity, visibility, % illumination, precipitation, BMNT, EENT and moonrise/moonset. b. Terrain-OCOKA O- Obstacles C- Cover and Concealment O- Observation and Fields of Fire K- Key Terrain A- Avenues of Approach

5 SITUATION b. Friendly forces: Mission of next higher unit Unit on the left mission Unit on the right mission Unit forward mission Mission of the reserve Units in support c. Attachments/detachments Any units attached or detached with effective times

6 2. MISSION - Who,What, When, Where, Why (Read Twice)
* Make sure you state your mission and not that of the higher headquarters that just briefed you: You will be either a squad or platoon!

7 3. EXECUTION Commander’s Intent: the stated vision that defines the purpose of the operation and relationship among the force, the enemy, and terrain Why is it important? With a full understanding of the mission and commander’s intent you should have enough guidance to improvise and adapt in order to complete the mission after the plan meets first contact with the enemy.

8 3. EXECUTION Concept of the operation:
Phases designation, description, start and end times/events. Refer to operational overlay, concept sketch, terrain model Common Phases - Assembly area (AA), prep, passage of lines - Move to Objective Rally Point (ORP) - Actions on objective - Consolidation and reorganization

9 3. EXECUTION Concept of the operation:
Maneuver: address all squads/teams by name giving them each an essential task. Designate main effort. Give mission statements for each subordinate element. * Again, refer to your picture or terrain model! * Look each team leader in the eye to make sure they heard you!

10 Summary of Execution Paragraph:
Tell it like a story from start to finish! The order should flow in a logical sequence Use your terrain model while you brief! Try to have your teams sit around it in the general location of their position on the battlefield You can address almost every other section of the OPORD while explaining your concept of maneuver using the overlay or terrain model: if there is a key signal or code word to initiate the attack don’t wait until paragraph 5 to explain it!

11 3. EXECUTION Concept of the operation:
(2) Fires: Refer to fire support overlay and target list Describe concept of fire support in relation to Maneuver - Priority of fires and who controls it b. Tasks to Maneuver units: Specify tasks, other than those listed earlier in maneuver paragraph like Aid/Litter, EPW, Demo, Compass, Pace

12 3. EXECUTION c. Tasks to Combat Support units: Usually not applicable for squad or platoon operations d. Coordinating Instructions: Things that apply to two or more units and are not SOP PIR Time lines MOPP level Order of march Rules of engagement Smoke Colors

13 c. Personnel: EPW collection
4. SERVICE SUPPORT a. General – company trains b. Material and Services: 1. Supply 2. Transportation 3. Services 4. Maintenance 5. Medical evacuation c. Personnel: EPW collection

14 5. COMMAND AND SIGNAL a. Command b. Signal
location of the leader and command post location of platoon sergeant or alternate CP succession of command location of higher unit commander b. Signal methods of communication; priority emergency signals; visual signals code words in effect during operation challenge and password Remember: These details of your plan should be covered during the concept of the operation as well!

15 TIPS of the TRADE: Remember to use your graphics, map, terrain model Use the specific names of your people as well as their team designation Tell squad to hold questions until you are finished Don’t waste all of your preparation time for OPORD brief: save time for Rehearsals! Good Rehearsals will discover unseen holes in your plan and help you develop good solutions Be dynamic, vocal, and enthusiastic!

16 FRAGOs Fragmentary Orders: Used to brief changes to existing order
Follows OPORD format Addresses only those elements that have changed “ … situation, no change. Mission, no change. Execution; A team will now be the main effort, B team is in support…”

17 FRAGOs Expect many FRAGOS in both tactical and garrison operations
Don’t get frustrated at each FRAGO Learn to anticipate changes Remember the overall mission and Intent Don’t let subordinates get bent out of shape because of multiple changes Usually somebody else’s good idea with good intentions but doesn’t always make sense at ground level

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