Monday, July 9, 2012

Short Stories from Small Wars III - Two Cops Delay the Sinking of the Navy of Georgia - Shootout!

This is the continuation of the previous blog entry.

Not a big fan of two men ambushes! Find out what happened to the two-cop team at the port of Poti.

Just one firing position, a few meters northeast of the kill zone (where the pier bends into a U, see map in previous entry), there is not much we can do. At the beginning of the mission I was convinced that this was going to be some few shots followed by a quick withdrawal.

The one man firing position in the foreground, the kill zone is in the background just to left of that big tank. The idea is to shoot one or two Russians while the rest of the squad is behind the tank.
I acted as a spotter for the ambush (the firing position is to my right), partially hidden in the sloped terrain that surrounds the pier.
Overconfident in my shooting skills and intoxicated by the prospect of mowing down the whole Russian squad coming straight into my position, I blow up the surprise element and shoot. At the time of shooting I could see one Russian soldier falling, but during the final review of the battlefield I found out I actually killed two.
The Russian fire response was unbearable and I have to pull back into cover under heavy fire.

I am totally shaken by the enemy fire and by the fact that my gaffe has compromised the whole ambush idea. I realize that the enemy will try to flank my previous position from our right, so I decide to pull some security on that sector.
By this time I am not thinking straight and opt for taking a peek at the enemy's flanking approach route. It's a freaking maze of store houses and containers, not exactly prime terrain for the M240. Too late to pull back, I can now hear the Russians shouting orders.
I try to find out a good position for a relatively long range shot, but it all turns into a close quarters battle. You don't see in this picture a Russian soldier who I just killed (he is right in front of me, on the concrete floor). Another one followed in quick succession.
All I am thinking by now is to get out and support my fellow cop. The news of his demise come at the very time I'm crawling my way out of the closed yard. Literally like a rat (there was a section at the bottom of the wall that was missing). My problems are getting worse as my escape was almost into my now defunct partner. Bullets whiz and sonic cracks above my head. I'm not even watching behind me, I just want to get back to the truck for a quick escape.

Getting out of the port.
The shame of the hasty withdrawal is pulling me back into the port. I just need to do more. I start a convoluted route north of the port, concealed by buildings, in search for the rest of the Russian survivors. Lots of distance between me and the pier: this time I want to use my M240 as it is intended to be used.

It was not difficult to find the Russians, they have now moved close to the fast attack crafts (tip of the yellow arrow). The difficult part was to find a good position to attack them.
After some time-consuming search for a good position, I find this roof from which I can fire at the Russians (they are in between the two green crosshair markers) and quickly get back into cover if they shoot back (pull back to be covered by the relative angle between the elevated roof and them, or just move left to get under the cover of the building).
For some strange reason, I see 4 Russian infantry men aligned with my line of fire. Fire! And some more when they go prone. Nothing moves within my field of fire, but I could briefly see two men running towards the left.

I climb to the other roof, which is higher than the previous one and I slowly crawl forward in case the two Russian survivors have my position already targeted. No such thing, it was a turkey shot (they were in the open).

I thereby claim this port back in the name of the Major of the city of Poti.
I neutralized a whole Russian squad. I was surprised to see the last Russians in the pier not to react to my last shots. I guess I was too quick ... (?!).

Driving back to the pier, I catch a glimpse of the first two Russian soldiers I killed at the very beginning of the mission (on the far side of the road, one in front other behind my truck).
My partner's death was all my fault.

These are Russian soldiers that I killed from the roof of the brick-red warehouse across the water (in the background, to the left of the picture). Note how they were apparently aligned with my shots.

The last two Russian casualties.


Anonymous said...

Nice writeup. However all this riding around an empty city to shoot at a lonely unsupported ai controlled russian squad looks a bit odd. Bet you wouldn't last a minute against a russian recon platoon on BMD's ;)

Anonymous said...

Oh wait. Did they actually send a single squad to take care of the ships? My bad then.

JC said...

That's what the book "The Tanks of August" says. They may have been more Russian forces sent but nonetheless good catch on the vehicles.

Challenge accepted!


Anonymous said...

Some things got lost in translation.
Russian Танки августа, page 83:
"К вечеру 12 августа в порт Поти вошел отрад 45-го отдельного разведывательного полка Воздушно-десантных войск."

English The tanks of august, page 74:
"Late in the afternoon on August 12, a squad of the Airborne Troops' 45th Independent Airborne Reconnaissance Regiment entered the Georgian port of Poti"

Отряд is not a squad, it is a detachment. In the russian FM's разведывательный отряд is usually company or even batallion sized. For example : "Парашютно-десантная (десантно-штурмовая) рота может быть назначена в разведывательный отряд." Airborne company may become a designated recon detachment.

Below is the TOE of an отряд which took part in the assault on the palace of president Amin:Файл:Организационно-Штатная_Структура_177-го_отдельного_отряда_специального_назначения_.jpg

JC said...

Thanks Anonymous,

That makes sense. Challenge accepted ... Again :p

Is there a good source for Russian field manuals?



Anonymous said... is a great page when it comes to russian field manuals and such. Begin with Уставы, Учебники сержанта and Руководства и наставления.
I can't help you if you don't read russian :)

Olav said...

Do you know of any sites that have good russian maps/plans of the various chechen operations?

Desdinova said...


You can still find US Army publications on the Soviet forces. I'll admit, they're dated, but I don't think much has changed. I know it lists TOEs for motorized/mechanized rifle battalions all the way down to the squad, though it glosses over airborne/spetsnaz/air assault formations (most likely due to lack of information) I had an idea of where to find them but I'm not sure if you even want them.

If you do, I'll dig them up and post a link.

Anonymous said...

Desdinova, you dont mean those FM 100-2-1, 100-2-2, 100-2-3 from 1984, do you?) There were some TRADOC papers from around 1994. Still there were some serious reforms since then, with all this brigades stuff.

Anonymous said...

Desdinova said...

I did mean those FMs. If you're only dealing with units of platoon/company, things don't seem to have changed much (Aside from their rapidly declining number of conscripts showing up)

I find it's generally easier to find people's unique interpretations of what they think the Russians are organized like than what they actually organize. I suppose it isn't in anyone's direct interest to translate any Russian documents into English unless they're doing it for the US Department of Defense.

JC said...

Thanks for the links.