THE 1997 COMBAT LEADER'S GUIDE
An analyst at ARI described the CLG: "The CLG provides finger tip information for all Soldiers but particularly those who don't often perform combat arms tasks. That was the intent of our update of the CLG. The crew of ARNG Soldiers performed their task in an outstanding manner...."
According to ARI, the CLG was developed in 1985. The intent was to create a standardized job performance aid for already trained Soldiers as a memory jogger. The CLG would help leaders overcome effects of procedural decay, and during realistic combat training. The CLG is a pocket sized handbook containing critical tasks from Soldier's Manuals and other training materials, in easy to read checklist format. The CLG provides fast information retrieval, can be personalized to individual and unit needs. Its a generic guide requiring little updating.
The original brown-covered CLG: Rifle Platoon and Squad was a product of extensive research. Printed as a test item in 1986, nearly 1000 copies were distributed for comments. Considering this feedback, the second edition, the gray covered CLG-Platoon Leaders, Platoon Sergeants and Squad Leaders was printed in 1987 and 1990; with requests from both active and reserve component units all over the world to include Korea and Germany. Other requests were received for Operation Desert Shield/Storm. The 48th and 155th Infantry Brigades from the Georgia and Mississippi Army National Guards were mobilized and requested large quantities of CLGs. In response to the demonstrated need, ARI printed a condensed Desert Storm Combat Leader's Guide with tan covers to distinguish it from earlier editions. When these stocks ran out, the Special Assistant to the Commanding General, Army National Guard, Fort Benning, Georgia reprinted the CLG in 1994 with a forest green cover. New sections were included on risk assessment, rules of engagement (ROE) and peacekeeping operations.
More than 40,000 CLGs are in worldwide distribution. Comments from the entire spectrum of the Total Army are enthusiastic about the CLG as evidenced by continuing individual and unit requests. CLGs are being used in classroom instruction, field exercuses, at the Combat Training Centers, and stability and security operations. The Combat Leader's Guide fills a critical soldier need....
One of the ARNG Soldiers involved in the re-write:
"The first thing I did was read the CLG from cover to cover, highlighting as I went things that might not match with FM 7-8 Light Infantry Platoon and Squad and FM 7-7J Mechanized Infantry Platoon and Squad tactics, techniques and procedures. What my pen highlighted, we cross-referenced with the latest manuals to see if it was the right acronymn for example...."
Another Soldier remarked:
"Looking at it, I kind of got confused compared to what we've been doing in the Ranger Regiment and in my light infantry unit back home in Washington state....Its really a good little reference and reminder for the leader in the field, all it needed was some fine-tuning..."
A Soldier with mechanized experience says:
"The first time I acually saw the CLG was in 1994, at NTC [the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Ca] when my Mechanizised Infantry unit , was acting as black-beret clad OPFOR in M113 Armored Fighting Vehicles (AFVs) preparing to ambush the BlueFor, the 1st Cavalry Division, which had much heavier M1 Abrams and M2 Bradley AFVs. I was a Track Commander (TC) with a squad leader/8-man squad onboard. After the Company Commander war-gamed our actions and alternate plans on a giant terrain model, we went through the CLG to insure we were as a Mech-infantry team ready...which we were as we defeated BlueFor in every engagement, garnering the Gold "Order of the Hamby" Award, 1st Class, a first for a National Guard unit.... The little CLG book impressed me with its simplicity and thoroughness...
"Years later, when I looked at the CLG, I noticed that recently added key Army weapon systems like the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior were overlooked. Other things that I saw that needed updating were the AFV and attack helicopter capabilities, Fire Support Weapons ranges-rates of fire and the planning considerations for urban combat. The world is rapidly urbanizing. While its nice to say attack a building top down, the reality is that helicopters to take you there may be unavailable or unwise if the enemy fortifies roooftops with massed small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades as was the case in Somalia. We added as possible options mouseholing: the unexpected opening (breaching) of a wall to get into a building or an adjacent room (other than a predictable doorway or rooftop) by explosive charge or gun effects as was done in Panama. Another consideration added was the vulnerability of the building being fought over to catching on fire, as well as the need to harden personnel with body armor, soft-skin vehicles with sandbags and to use AFV, heavy weapons to achieve shock effect against targets offering stubborn resistance rather than charging into enemy fire headlong....We used Army doctrinal references like FM 90-10-1 The Combat Infantryman's Guide to Combat in Built-up Areas for all of our sources....."
The 1997 CLG is printed in a green camouflage cover and is a small booklet that easily fits into a BDU pocket for field use. We recommend Soldiers laminate their copies to harden them for field use.
"The pocket guide is a combination of doctrine and techniques used by small unit leaders. For more knowledge of any doctrne refer to the FM pertaining to that subject....."
What we need to do now is add self-carbonizing (2 sided NCR paper) to certain parts of the CLG that need it (lines for OPORDS, clear for map overlays, Range cards etc) to make it an Improved Tactical Message Book or ITMB. This would expedite the transfer of information to Soldiers/Leaders without need of batteries and electronic means.
If you would like to obtain copies of the Combat Leader's Guide; write, call or FAX:
Infantry Hall, Bdg 4 Room 540
Ft. Benning, Ga 31905
(706) 545-5741 FAX: 7837
Cover the CLG with laminate plastics, hole punch and bind with 550 cord or cover in a zippered notebook:
Which you spray with KIWI camp Dry to waterproof it further.
Or view it/print it on your PC/printer here online here:
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