Hmmm, I didn't know the US was this close to putting these techie troops on the ground. IIRC the program is primarily a commsat package which keeps the user and an HQ controller constantly aware of his own location and the whereabouts of friendlies, uisng a HUD similar in principle to what we use in FH. Not much of an article, and also seems to point to lack of usefulness in highly rural A'stan. I bet Anushac-11, who keeps up with military tech, could tell us more. This group just deployed doesn't seem to have any of the experimental weaponry just to go from the article. Army's Most High-Tech Infantry Unit Set to Touch Down in Afghanistan | Popular Science
Here's an overall look at the program via W'pedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Land_Warrior
7th December 2003
I guess soldiers there won't be too happy that they have to carry computers and batteries in that climate in addition to all the other stuff they already have on them. But Afghanistan is a nice place to field-test equipment.
edit: I wonder if they include gimmicks like this one:
If you have seen how the US Army armored units and USAF air units have shared data so everyone is aware of where everyone is and can share information instantly Land Warrior is similar to this. It also gives the soldier direct contact to HQ for ability to call in support or airstrikes and advanced technology such as helmet mounted view screen and IR and color cameras on the main weapon. IIRC the images from the camera can be relayed to HQ. The camera and thermal imager on the main weapon can be poked around a corner to shoot or to see whats around the corner.
IIRC the Land Warrior Units are currently part of the Styrker Brigade and the LWS can be linked to teh Strryker vehicle so the infantry can see everything that the Stryker vehicle knows. The system also has GPS and a dead reckoning system that can accurately show location without GPS being up.
Speaking of the Stryker Brigade, how has that light av performed? I've followed some of the blogging of members of the unit, and if nothing else morale always seemed very high. IIRC the Stryker concept was really pushed by former Army COS Eric Shinseki, who was moved into early retirement by Bush when the 4-star general did not sign on to Rumsfeld's troop-lite scenario for the Iraq invasion. I seem to recall Shinseki said we would need something on the order of 1/4-million troops, if not to defeat the uniformed Iraqi armed forces, then certainly to maintain order after the battles were over. Looks like he had the better end of that argument.
But he also championed the Stryker as the armored vehicle of the future, with less need for heavily armored vehicles to operate in open terrain, and more need for the light and nimble wheeled vehicles to operate in urban settings.
Anyone following this?
Shinseki wasn't moved into early retirement IIRC, his retirement was already planned before he criticized Bush.
I haven't heard a soldier say a single bad thing about the Stryker. Here's one of many articles:
Hmmm. Seems an article from 4 years ago may be a tad stale. At this point I don't have an opinion one way or the other, but to form one I think I'm going to need information fresher than four years old.
I remember this thing from years back. Are they also getting that cool HK rifle with the semi-auto 20mm grenade launcher and the uber optics?
jumjum;4935714Hmmm. Seems an article from 4 years ago may be a tad stale. At this point I don't have an opinion one way or the other, but to form one I think I'm going to need information fresher than four years old.
I'm not quite sure what you mean here. Are you saying that soldier's opinions might have changed significantly since 2005, even though the amount of fighting in Iraq has dropped heavily since then?
Just that there is certainly more experience, quantitatively and qualitatively, now than then.
The Stryker is basically the current generation LAV-III while the US Marines uses the similar but lighter LAV-25 which itself was a license copy of the Swiss MOWAG Piranha 8X8 armored vehicle.
Reports from military personnel and analysts indicate the Stryker is superior to other military vehicles (including Abrams tanks, Bradley IFVs and HMMWVs) regarding survivability against IEDs (improvised explosive devices). One colonel said that the Strykers saved the lives of at least a hundred soldiers deployed in northern Iraq.
Soldiers and officers who use Strykers defend them as very effective vehicles; an article in the Washington Post states:
"But in more than a dozen interviews, commanders, soldiers and mechanics who use the Stryker fleet daily in one of Iraq's most dangerous areas unanimously praised the vehicle. The defects outlined in the report were either wrong or relatively minor and did little to hamper the Stryker's effectiveness, they said."
I think the Stryker/LAV-III is a excellent vehicle and I love the 105mm equipped M1128 fire support vehicle.
I am also a big fan of the M-1117 Guardian armored car which is a decendant of the LAV-150 used in Vietnam. The M-1117 should have been used in place of uparmored Hummers in the first place.