The Best Laid Plans

by Capt Bruce I. Gudmundsson, USMCR

This game is a continuation of Solution A, TDG #92-11.

The orders reached all of the major subordinate elements of the battalion by 2200. By 2400, the company commanders, as well as the leaders of the TOW Section and 81mm Mortar Platoon, had reported to the command post to tell the commander that their units were on the march.

Around 0200, however, the commander began to receive reports that things were going wrong. The rubber boats in the staging area turned out to be missing critical parts. Precious time was lost “mixing and matching” to make complete boats. By 0400, only four boats had reached Alpha Company. None had been delivered to Charlie Company.

At 0430, the enemy let loose with what could only be described as a hurricane bombardment. Artillery shells, machinegun bullets, and even recoilless rifle shells fell like rain. Those elements of the battalion who were dug in suffered little from this fire. Bravo Company, on the other hand, was caught in the open. Although the forwardmost boat carriers were less than 600 meters from the crossing points, delivery of additional boats was out of the question.

At 0500, the American bombardment began. Despite a ferocity which rivaled that of the enemy shelling, it brought little relief. Indeed, just before H-hour, the battalion commander found that he could no longer leave the shelter of his hastily dug command post.

It is now 0615. The attack was scheduled for 0530, but was not launched. You are the battalion commander-what are your orders?


In a time limit of 10 minutes, give the orders you would pass to your subordinates. Provide a sketch of your plan, any guidance for supporting arms, and a brief explanation of your plan. Submit your solution to Marine Corps Gazette. TDG #93-1, P. O. Box 1775, Quantico, VA 22134.