the 1 st
Battalions were re-activated in 1974, General Abrams
chartered the battalions to be "the best light
infantry unit in the world" and a "standard
bearer for the rest of the Army." After Operation
Urgent Fury (Grenada, 1983), the requirement for
more Rangers and a better suited command structure
resulted in the formation of the 3 rd
Battalion and the Regimental Headquarters in 1984.
Today, the 75 th
Regiment is part of the United States Special Operations
Regiment plans and conducts special military operations
in support of US policy and objectives. Its specially
organized, equipped, and trained soldiers provide
the National Command
Authority (NCA) the capability to rapidly deploy
a credible military force to any region of the world.
In addition, Rangers are often called upon to perform
missions in support of general
purpose forces (GPF).
cornerstone of Ranger missions is that of direct
action. More specifically, Rangers are the premiere
airfield seizure and raid unit in the Army. In order
to remain proficient in all light infantry skills,
Ranger units also focus on mission essential tasks
that include movement to contact, ambush, reconnaissance,
airborne and air assaults, and hasty defense.
Ranger Battalion or Regiment mission would involve
seizing an airfield for use by follow-on general
purpose forces and conducting raids on key targets
of operational or strategic importance. Once secured,
follow-on airland or airborne forces are introduced
into theater and relieve the Ranger force so that
it may conduct planning for future SOF operations.
Rangers rely heavily on external fire support. Ranger
fire support personnel train extensively on the
employment of CAS, attack helicopters, Naval Gunfire
(NGF), AC-130 Gunship and artillery. The close working
relationships with units that habitually support
the force ensures that the Ranger Force always has
the required assets to perform its mission.
Regiment, headquartered at Fort Benning, Georgia,
is composed of three Ranger battalions, and is the
premier light-infantry unit of the United States
Army. The three Ranger battalions that comprise
the 75th Ranger Regiment are geographically dispersed.
Their locations are:
· 1 st
Regiment, Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia
· 2 nd
Regiment, Fort Lewis, Washington
· 3 rd
Regiment, Fort Benning, Georgia
Headquarters consists of a Command Group, normal
staff positions (S-1 through S-5), a fairly robust
communications detachment, a fire support element,
a reconnaissance detachment of three 6-man teams,
a cadre for the Ranger Training Detachment (RTD),
and a Company Headquarters. Additionally, the Regiment
has the capability of deploying a planning team
consisting of experienced Ranger operations, intelligence,
fire support, communications and logistics planners.
The team can deploy on short notice with USASOC
approval, to theater SOCs to plan ranger operations
during crisis action planning for contingency operations.
of the three Ranger Battalions is identical in organization.
Each battalion consists of three rifle companies
and a Headquarters and Headquarters Company. Each
battalion is authorized 580 Rangers. However, the
battalions may be up to 15% over-manned to make
allowances for schools and TDYs.
flexibility of the Ranger Force requires it to perform
under various command structures. The force
can work unilaterally under a Corps, as a part of
JSOTF, as an ARSOTF, or as an Army component in
a JTF. Historically, it is common for the Ranger
Force to conduct forced entry operations as part
of a JSOTF, then become OPCON to a JTF to afford
them the capability to conduct special operations/direct
Army maintains the Regiment at a high level of readiness.
Each battalion can deploy anywhere in the world
with 18 hours notice. Because of the importance
the Army places on the 75 th
Regiment, it must possess a number of capabilities.
These capabilities include:
· Infiltrating and exfiltrating by land,
sea, and air
· Conducting direct action operations
· Conducting raids
· Recovery of personnel and special equipment
· Conducting conventional
or special light-infantry operations
units have a limited anti-armor capability (84mm
Carl Gustav and Javelin) and lack organic indirect
fire support (60mm mortars only). The only air defense
artillery (ADA) system as the Stinger. Ranger units
have no organic combat support (CS) or combat service
support (CSS) and deploy with only 5 days of supplies.
There are no organic transportation assets. As a
result of the lack of organic CSS, Ranger units
require logistical and mission support from other
services and/or agencies. Ranger battalions are
light infantry and have only a few vehicles and
crew-served weapons systems. Standard weapon systems
per battalion are listed below:
· 84mm Ranger Antitank Weapons system (RAWS):
· 60mm mortars: 6
· M240G Machine Guns: 27
· M249 Squad Automatic Weapons (SAW): 54
· MK 19 Grenade Launcher: 12
· .50CAL Machine Gun: 12
· Javelin: 9
any given day, one Ranger Battalion is on Ready
Reaction Force (RRF) 1 with the requirement to be
"wheels up" within 18 hours of notification.
Additionally, one rifle company with battalion command
and control can deploy in 9 hours. The Regimental
Headquarters remains on RRF1 at all times. RRF1
rotates between the three battalions normally in
13 week periods. While on RRF1, the designated battalion
is prohibited from conducting any off post training,
deployments for training (DFTs), etc., as they would
be unable to meet the required deployment time standards.
The Ranger Regiment can deploy in any number of
ways. The force can deploy directly from home station
to the area of operations. More often, the force
deploys to an Intermediate Staging Base (ISB) in
CONUS, or OCONUS to link-up with attachments, rest,
plan, rehearse, etc. before conducting operations.
METT-T (emphasis on time and distance to the
area of operations)
determines how the force will deploy.
Ranger Battalion possesses 12 Ranger Special Operations
Vehicles (RSOVs) for its airfield seizure mission.
The vehicle is a modified Land Rover. Each vehicle
carriers a six or seven-man crew. Normally, each
vehicle mounts an M240G MG and either a MK-19 Grenade
Launcher or a M2, .50 cal MG. One of the passengers
mans an anti-armor weapon (RAAWS, AT-4, LAW, and
Javelin). The main purpose of the vehicle is to
provide the operation force with a mobile, lethal
defensive capability. They are not assault
vehicles, but useful in establishing battle positions
that provide the force some standoff capability
for a short duration. Each Battalion also possesses
ten 250CC motorcycles that assist in providing security
and mobility during airfield seizures. Most commonly
used as listening posts/observation posts (LP/OPs),
or as an economy of force screen for early warning,
the motorcycles offer the commander tactical mobility.
Ranger Battalion has a Ranger Support Element (RSE)
that supports home station training. This unit (Riggers,
Truck Drivers, Maintenance, etc.) is not organic,
but through individual post memorandums of understanding
provides the battalion with the necessary requirements
to meet mission/training demands. It is important
to note, however, that this unit, although responsible
for supporting the Ranger Force's outload for combat,
does not deploy with the unit. The logistical and
support arrangements for extended sustainment remain
a constant Ranger concern.
The rifle companies
consist of 152 Rangers each, while the headquarters
company has the remaining Rangers assigned. Each
rifle company within the Regiment is organized the
same. It is comprised of a Headquarters & Headquarters
Company, 3 rifle platoons, and a weapons platoon.
The weapons platoon of each Rifle Company contains
a mortar section of two 60mm mortars (a third is
available for special operations) and an anti-tank
section of three 3-man teams firing the 84mm Carl
Gustav (referred to has the RAAWS: Ranger Anti-Armor
Weapon System). This weapon is also Ranger unique
and not currently under any testing for other infantry
units. A versatile weapon, it can fire High Explosive,
High Explosive Anti-Tank, Illumination, smoke, and
in the future, a flechette round. Finally, the weapons
platoon has a sniper section consisting of two 2-man,
M24 (7.62mm) sniper teams. The third team in this
section employs the .50 cal Barrett Sniper System.
The Barrett is a SOF specific weapon, but as of
1996 is undergoing testing and analysis for possible
inclusion in other Army units.