Intelligence Estimate - Defense

TITLE OF INSTRUCTIONAL EVENT: Intelligence Estimate - Defense

Lesson Script Instructor Notes
REVIEW 11-1-96


a. Lesson Tie-in: Now that you have done IPB, which is basically the homework you do before the battle (though it must be updated), and have completed your Mission Analysis, and you are preparing to complete your planning and DST for the operation, you must now prepare your Intelligence Estimate. The Intel Estimate will provide data on enemy, weather, and terrain to assist in decision making and course of action development. You must complete the estimate before developing and finalizing the friendly course of action. Ensure that the students bring to class SH 46500, Intelligence Estimate Student Handout.

b. Objective: As a result of this block of instruction, the student will be able to, with all notes and issued material and in an all-source intelligence environment, prepare a written intelligence estimate, and answer questions on a given intelligence estimate, IAW the Graduation Criteria.

c. Safety Considerations: There are no specific safety considerations for this block of instruction.

d. Purpose: The Intelligence Estimate Show Slide #1 is used to evaluate terrain and weather with all enemy courses of action. The estimate will be used to select viable friendly courses of action and ultimately to select the friendly course of action that best supports mission accomplishment. The intel officer must be able to effectively analyze the situation and communicate that data to the decision makers.

e. Procedure: During this 2 hour block of instruction, you will receive approximately 60 minutes worth of lecture on the Intelligence Estimate. This does not include the instruction you had on paragraph Begin IC 2a & b (Weather and Terrain) during IPB. Show Slide #2 You will then prepare & brief a complete Intelligence Estimate for ___ BDE, 2d AR Div.


The Intel Estimate, in true form, is the product produced by the intelligence section that will be used to assist the CDR in making his decision on what course of action he will take. Like the Logistics Estimate and the Personnel Estimate, it makes recommendations on the feasibility of friendly courses of action based on weather, terrain, and enemy considerations. The Intel Estimate serves another very useful purpose. Because of the nature of its format and its completeness, we use the Intel Estimate format in all our Intelligence briefings. Following the format, whenever preparing for or giving your briefing, will keep you organized and insure that you do not forget to cover any critical subjects. Student Check Question: Who is ultimately responsible for the complete intel estimate?

Answer: The G2/S2.

Now let's look at how to write and brief using the Intel Estimate Format. You may find much of this explanation in the SH 46300, a complete example of the intelligence estimate. Insure students know the difference between written & oral estimates.

1. Mission - Paragraph 1 of the Show Slide #3 intelligence estimate will be the units restated mission. This mission statement must be approved by the commander.

2. The Area of Operations

a. Weather

(1) Existing situation - Give the current weather data to include, high Show Slide #4 and low temperature, wind direction and speed, visibility, precipitation, cloud ceiling, any special weather conditions and light data. Light data should include as a minimum, BMNT, SR, SS, EENT, MR, MS, and percent illumination. NOTE: When briefing, place the weather data on a chart and let your audience read it. Then highlight significant points relative weather is it affects the mission.

(2) Effects on enemy courses of action - Discuss the weather effects on the enemy in as much detail as possible. As a minimum, discuss effects on trafficability, visibility, air operations, smoke and NBC operations, morale and comfort of soldiers, and equipment (to include NODS, weapon effectiveness, logistics and communications). Insure you discuss how the weather will effect enemy operations.

(3) Effects on our courses of action - Now discuss the weather effects on our operations. A thorough knowledge of our mission/intent and our capabilities is required to adequately evaluate the effects. Discuss effects on trafficability, visibility, air operations, smoke and NBC operations, moral and comfort of soldiers, and equipment (to include NODS, weapon effectiveness, logistics and communications). Once again, insure you discuss the effects on our operations.

NOTE: Discuss effects on enemy and friendly separately. In some cases the effects may be the same, but insure that the mission of each force is considered. Also, some weather effects will increase effectiveness, while others will degrade operations. Weather is rarely covered in the detail that it should be. Do a thorough job in your analysis. Your CDR should not have to do your job. Don't be afraid to discuss the obvious. Your CDR is a busy man and may not have thought of all the effects himself. The number one goal is for our forces to maximize our strengths and to take full advantage of the enemy's vulnerabilities.

b. Terrain

NOTE: The simplest method of disseminating information on the terrain is to use a map and a briefing. If however, you must do it in written form, provide an overlay if possible. If there is no overlay disseminated with the written intel estimate, insure you give a thorough description of the areas you are describing, to include accurate grid coordinates.

(1) Existing situation (OCOKA) Before beginning to brief the terrain, you must first break the map into manageable segments so that the person receiving the data can more easily digest all the data that you have. There are two common methods used to do this. The first method involves describing the OCOKA factors in one area of the map at a time (beyond the FLOT, from the FEBA to the FLOT, the covering force area). The second method involves briefing the OCOKA factors down one avenue of approach at a time. Select whatever approach works best for you, but never try to brief the entire area of interest at one time.

Observation & Fields of Fire Be specific when describing the locations where good of bad observation and fields of fire exist. (For example: from grid A to grid B the observation is out to 3000 meters; from the high ground at grid C to the edge of the woodline at grid D observation is limited to 200 meters due to the thick vegetation). Also be sure to discuss fields of fire in relation to maximum effective ranges of weapon systems. Your CDR needs to know where to place his weapons so that he can take advantage of their maximum range. He also needs to know where the enemy will be able to use his weapons to maximum range (or where he cannot). (Example: from grid E to grid F the enemy will only be able to engage our forces out to 1000 meters; from battle position X to the tank ditch, we have fields of fire on the advancing enemy out to the maximum effective range of all our systems). Student Check Question: There are many aspects to consider when briefing vegetation. Would fairly low brush in an open field of fire affect anti-tank guided missiles? Answer: Yes. It would degrade the tracking of targets for wire guided missiles.

Cover and Concealment Discuss cover in terms of direct, indirect, and air to ground fire. Discuss concealment in terms of ground or aerial observation. Be specific, show the CDR on the map where each is good or bad and tell him why.

Obstacles Discuss all obstacles natural and manmade (to include minefields, tank ditches, etc.). Tell the CDR why they are obstacles and what they are obstacles to.

Key Terrain Insure when discussing key terrain that you tell the CDR why it is key! What advantage does the controller of the terrain have. Be specific.

Avenues of Approach When discussing avenues of approach, talk your CDR through AA. In describing how the enemy will fight within each AA, you assist your CDR in visualizing the battle from the enemy's perspective. Do not forget your air avenues of approach.

In the Defense: Discuss all avenues of approach but include your assessment of the likelihood of enemy use, and the size force that can maneuver in that AA. Also discuss all mobility corridors. In the defense, you should also include the best friendly counterattack avenues of approach. Determine friendly and enemy air avenues of approach.

(2) Effects on enemy courses of action - Discuss how terrain will effect enemy operations. How will he fight the battle? Where will he place his forces? Where will he commit his 2nd echelon or reinforce? Will the terrain force him to deviate from doctrine?

(3) Effects on our courses of action - Discuss how the terrain will effect our operations. Where will we have an advantage or be vulnerable? c. Other characteristics Usually for low intensity conflict. Items such as population, sociology, politics, economics, and other factors would be discussed the same as weather and terrain, if they apply.

3. Enemy Situation:Show Slide #5

a. Disposition: Use a map or overlay if possible. Show enemy locations on the ground. If written, attach an overlay if possible, otherwise, give locations by grid coordinates.

b. Composition: Discuss enemy order of battle data such as unit identifications and equipment. Include any special capabilities of enemy units.

c. Strength: Discuss the enemy's overall strength in terms of percentages. Different % would be appropriate for first or second echelon forces, if applicable.

(1) Committed forces: We will Note: Show the discuss committed forces in more detail students the later but use the rules of thumb and count doctrinal templates the number of forces two echelons below with committed and yours. Count motorized rifle, tank, and reinforcing forces reconnaissance units. computed. This is very generic. Have (2) Reinforcements: We will them use these until also discuss reinforcements later but brief they learn committed specific units, or size units, that are not & reinforcing forces. committed but can potentially reinforce in our sector.

(3) Artillery: Discuss all supporting artillery within range of our sector. Discuss formation and locations Place the of RAGS and DAGS. Discuss any higher "Pizza Plotter" on level artillery associated with each RAG the board and draw and DAG. Show the CDR where all enemy range fan out to artillery can range into our sector. The maximum effective best method is to draw a range fan out to range of a Soviet the maximum range of each type of enemy artillery piece. artillery unit so that the commander can see where he is vulnerable to enemy fire.

(4) Air: Discuss parity, superiority, etc. Discuss known enemy air capabilities. Discuss doctrinal capabilities. Also discuss the number of sorties expected in your sector.

(5) NBC: Discuss any use or known enemy preparations for use. Discuss known NBC delivery systems both located and doctrinal (120mm mortar and higher deliver chemical; 152mm and higher deliver NUKE). Discuss enemy MOPP status if known. Discuss what you think the enemy intends to do. Do not report history, do some predictive analysis.

d. Recent and present significant activities: Discuss any current enemy activity that will be a basis for conclusions on his future activities as well as special operations (SPETZNAZ, rear operations, NBC). Show Slide #6

e. Peculiarities and weaknesses: Discuss deviations from doctrine, known enemy weaknesses, and area of operations factors. Emphasis should be placed on the extent to which the enemy is vulnerable, how it will effect his operations, and how it will influence friendly operations.

4. Enemy Capabilities: This paragraph is what makes this an Intelligence Estimate. Note: Point out This is only briefed when actually briefing that when using an estimate. If this paragraph is not the Intel Estimate briefed, it is not an Intel Estimate. This format to brief, paragraph will list and analyze all enemy you are not capabilities. briefing an estimate. Instead, you are briefing enemy, weather, and terrain.

a. Enumeration: List all enemy courses of action, regardless of how practical. Be specific (2 regiments abreast with the BTR in the north and the BMP in the south).

b. Analysis and discussion: Give for each course of action listed in 4a. This analysis would include an analysis of the course of action by itself. Does it make sense? Is it doctrine? Is it truly possible? Next, the analysis would compare each of action to other courses of action. Some considerations would be terrain, force ratios, doctrine, etc. Finally, the analysis should look at the relative combat power created by each enemy course of action.

5. Conclusions: Show Slide #7

a. Effects of intelligence considerations: Can the mission from para 1 be supported from the intelligence stand point? Which friendly courses of action can be supported? Which friendly course of action will be the most difficult to support because of reliance upon specific intelligence to be successful? What special considerations will be important to collection and R & S planning?

b. Effects of AO on our action: Discuss how the AO will effect friendly operations. This is not a restatement of para 2, but instead a focus on our overall operations. For the defense, indicate the best defensive locations and counterattack avenues of approach, and indicate the best avenues into that defensive sector. Recommend the best location for the reserve. Note: The Reserve location should allow quick access to all CAA, have some cover and concealment, and possibly stay out of enemy artillery range.

c. Probable enemy courses of action: This is the most important part of the Intel Estimate. What is he going to do? Will he attack, defend, etc.? Who, what, when, and where must all be addressed? Insure this is done in sufficient detail so that it can stand alone. Discuss commitment of 2nd echelon forces. Do who, what, when, and where for each echelon. Consider avenues of approach, bridges, fording sites, highways, cover and concealment, etc. Also, discuss other courses of action such as use of NBC or rear activity.

d. Enemy vulnerabilities: Discuss enemy vulnerabilities that we can exploit. Student Check Question: What is discussed in para 3.c.(5) NBC?

Answer: Discuss any use or known enemy preparations for NBC. Discuss known NBC delivery systems both located and doctrinal (120mm mortar & higher deliver chemical; 152mm & higher deliver NUKE). Discuss enemy MOPP status if known. Discuss what you think the enemy intends to do.

Note: Show the Intel Estimate Tape at this time.

(2) AAR on the Class:

(a) Review overall performance of the class. (b) Clarify any errors or misunder- standings. (c) Ask for student comments on the PE to improve it. (d) The Intel Estimate will be essential for friendly course of action development.

3. CONCLUSIONS: Show Slide #8

a. Review of main points: In the last 6 hours, you have learned the content, format, and use of the Intel Estimate. Insure when briefing para 2, you relate it to effects on friendly and enemy courses of action. Para 3 (Enemy Situation) must be as detailed as possible. Consider in your analysis and input to para 3, situationally templating all missing units. Para 4 is what makes the product an Intel Estimate. Without para 4, you are just briefing enemy, weather, and terrain data. Insure to consider all enemy courses of action. Para 5 is your best guess as to what the enemy will do. When briefing the estimate, do not refer to para #s. Instead, tell the CDR what he understands.

b. Questions or comments:

c. Tie-in: The Intel Estimate that you developed will now be used to assist in friendly course of action development. The data and analysis will also be used in preparation of your DST and execution of the battle. At BASIX, and once you leave the school, you will constantly prepare estimates or use the format for briefing. You must make the Intel Estimate a part of your base knowledge.