Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Benghazi Consulate hit by battalion level firepower, defended by small-town SWAT team

Benghazi hit by battalion level firepower, defended by small-town SWAT team

I looked up what a US force of 39 men normally has - it's called a platoon. But the heavier weapons are only at the battalion level, about 500-odd soldiers. Benghazi was hit by 50-200 special forces grade soldiers with 14.5 mm (=50 cal) machine guns on trucks, mortars, and RPG anti-tank rockets, and somehow quickly breached a gate strong enough to stop a truck. Against this were 3 civilian security agents with M4 carbines and sidearms. 

5 were requested, but turned down by Lamb who supposedly did not ask anyone higher up, certainly not Hillary or Obama, though I suspect it did go as high as Obama who was told by somebody to keep it at 3.

Hit by a force comparable to a US platoon of 39 men
can tell you the TYPICAL current composition of a U.S. Army Light Infantry Rifle Platoon:

Platoon Headquarters consisting of:
Platoon Leader: Second Lieutenant
Platoon Sergeant: Sergeant First Class
Radiotelephone Operater (RTO): Private First Class (PFC) or Specialist

3 Rifle Squads each consisting of:
Squad Leader: Staff Sergeant
2 Team Leaders: Sergeants
2 M249 5.56mm light Machine gun (SAW) Gunners: Specialists
2 M203 Grenadiers: PFCs or Specialists
2 Riflemen: Privates (E-2) or Privates First Class

1 Weapons Squad consisting of:
Squad Leader: Staff Sergeant
2 M240B 7.62mm Machine Gunners: PFCs or Specialists
2 Assistant Machine Gunners (AGs): Specialists or PFCs
2 AMMO Handlers (ABs): Privates (E-2) or PFCs
2 Antiarmor Specialists (Javelin Guners): Specialists

Total Authorized Strength: 39
Authorized Weapon Systems:
2 M240B 7.62 Machine Guns
2 Javelins (equiv to RPG)
6 M249 5.56 Squad Automatic Weapons (SAWs)
6 M203 Grenade Launchers (attached to M4s)
31 M4 5.56 Carbines semi-automatic assault rifle
Gun trucks with 14.55 mm anti-aircraft gun comparable to Humvee with TOW or 50 cal turret, assigned at the battalion level.
Mortars assigned at battalion level
The light infantry batallion has a personnel strength of 567 officers and men. They are in three companies and a HQ with weapons units.
The equipment allocations for the battalion are:
Grenade Launcher, 40mm, M203 65
* Machine Gun, Cal 50, Flex 15
Machine Gun, Grenade 40MM, MK-19 14
Machine Gun, 5.56 MM M249 72
* Mortar, 60 MM 6
* Mortar, 81 MM, M252 6
AntiTank Set, Command Launch Unit 18
* Truck, Util, TOW Carrier, ARMD 20

The force that hit Benghazi was comparable to the Taliban / Al Queda forces that hit

Battle of Wanat - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

one of the bloodiest battles in the Afghanistan war in which a force of 75 US and Afghan troops beat back 200-500 Al Queda and Taliban fighters, and the Battle of Kamdesh 2009 battle 20 miles from Wanat, the bloodiest battle for US forces since the Battle of Wanat. Assault by 300 Taliban resulted in eight Americans killed and 22 wounded, and prompt withdrawal from nearly destroyed base.

As this attack force was rarely used by the Taliban, it is entirely possible that the same people were transported to Libya for this operation. 

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