Talk:List of command and control abbreviations

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RSTA, STA, ISTAR, C4ISR, ISR, etc (disambig)[edit]

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.
  • It was decided that no merge be performed, but that C4ISR be used as a disambiguation page.

It seems to me that it's about time this article became a {{disambig}} point for the related articles, perhaps also RSTA. Thoughts? ... aa:talk 16:17, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

I think it'd be better if all the related articles were just redirects to here. It makes no sense to have many overlapping sets of these concepts described individually - it's silly to discuss (for example) Intelligence in both C4I and ISTAR. If the article gets too big, I'd vote for each of the individual concepts to have a page of their own with this article explaining the various ways they are grouped together. --Khendon 18:37, 6 March 2006 (UTC)
Specifically, RSTA is large enough to be its own article. I think some pieces of that article are redundant however, and could be discussed here. I also think that the mention of the C4ISR journal makes this more likely to be a dab page. Perhaps some sort of hybrid dab page, that indicates what each of the individual components of C4ISTAR are, with possible meanings below? It's kind of tough given the jargon soup out there. ... aa:talk 20:50, 6 March 2006 (UTC)
Could this and a few other articles be replaced by a general article about the history and practice of military command and control? The list of acronyms shouldn't be much more than a footnote. Michael Z. 2006-08-07 19:36 Z

Some clean-up & merger seems to be required between this theme of acronyms. A simple merger will likely be inadequate. I propose discussion occur here. I am aware that these acronyms are used in US, UK, and Canadian militaries (and I assume within other NATO & ABCA militaries). However, the different militaries apply them differently and individual doctrines dictate if one will emphasize C3ISR or C4ISTAR, and if one will call it RISTA or ISTAR. -- MCG 03 Sept 06

I don't think so. RSTA needs to be its own article due to the large size and scope of it: RSTA units encompass tens of thousands of soldiers in the US Army, and it's a fundamental doctrine in modern maneuver combat. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 22:56, 3 September 2006 (UTC)

I still belive it is appropriate. RSTA is not the unit, it is a function assigned to a unit (but a function that may be described stand alone). An RSTA Bn is the unit. Same within the Canadian military; ISTAR is not the sub unit but ISTAR Sqn is (and this function is typically filled by a recce sqn). Looking into the text of this article we can see that RSTA is this to also be true of RSTA: "Typically, a brigade/regiment designates one of its battalions/squadrons as a RSTA squadron."
Wrong. Please don't tell me RSTA is not a unit: I served in the 3/124th RSTA. RSTA is the name of the unit. I know firsthand what the definition of RSTA is. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 00:41, 4 September 2006 (UTC)
I recognize that several of the articles I've recommended for merger serve as a single conduit to describe ISTAR/RSTA/STA functions & tasked units. I recommend that function portion of all these be merged into one article (otherwise we have much confusion all over). There can be seperate "RSTA Sqn" and "STA Bn" and etc articles particular to specific militaries.-- MCG 03 Sept 06
Why? the articles are fine as they are, and what you are suggesting is to combine two completely disparate things: one being a command and control intelligence doctrine, and one being a MTOE-designated type of unit and their maneuver doctrine. These are two different things by far. This is a completely useless merge. Do you want further proof? The STA page has this:

Surveillance and Target Acquisition is a term that can be applied to a number of similar military units and roles as follows:

* The Honourable Artillery Company (STA Patrol Regiment, Territorial Army) * Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition (US Army) * STA Sniper (USMC) * Surveillance, Target Acquisition, Night Observation and Counter-surveillance Centre, Royal School of Artillery * 5 Regiment Royal Artillery (Surveillance and Target Acquisition) * 32 Regiment Royal Artillery (Surveillance and Target Acquisition – Unmanned Air Vehicles) * 204 (Tyneside Scottish) Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers) (Surveillance and Target Acquisition) * 269 (West Riding) Battery Royal Artillery (Volunteers) (Surveillance and Target Acquisition)

5 of the 8 subjects that STA can refer to are ACTUAL UNITS! 1 of the 8 is an MOS in the USMC, a type of JOB. One of the 8 is a reference to a training school. And one of the 8 is reference to a type of squadron in the US Army. None of these have ANYTHING to do with C4ISTAR, which the page itself says refers to various informations based systems. Heres a hint: informations based systems do NOT equate to a named military squadron, a military MOS, a military squadron type, nor a military training center. Therefore there is no need for a merge with STA.

So we've now established beyond any reasonable doubt there is no need for a merge with STA. We can then extrapolate that there is no need for a merge with RSTA because RSTA is simply the US Army version of STA. Plus, there's support above from Avriette as well as myself that RSTA is definitively large enough for its own article.

So now we've established RSTA and STA are out. What you do with ISTAR and C4ISTAR is your business: those probably should be merged. But STA and RSTA refer to completely different things than ISTAR and C4ISTAR do.

So, once again, I'll be removing all references to RSTA and STA from the merge debate. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 00:41, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

SWATJester, It disappoints me that you are conducting this debate in such bad faith. I marked the article as disputed merge (so that anyone with pertinent information could make it available). I suspect you are too emotionally attached (having created the RSTA article) and attempting to protect your territory. However, within my Army the term ISTAR is used to describe organizations that do exactly the same thing as the RSTA & STA organizations in your military. These terms describe a function. You were in the 3rd RSTA Squadron, 124th Cavalry. Note that the “RSTA” is qualified by the “Squadron” (even if it is implied in some written formats just as the qualifier after “Cavalry” is implied. This is why some form of rationalization needs to be done between all of these articles. -- MCG 03 Sept 06
Once again incorrect, and please don't assume bad faith. I was not in the 3rd RSTA Squdron 124th Cavalry. I was in the 3rd Squadron 124th RSTA. There is a significant difference. I fail to see any reason why a merge is necessary. You can simply notate ISTAR as having a use in your army's organization. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 01:59, 4 September 2006 (UTC)
I can find nothing that suggests that RSTA implies a unit unless "RSTA" is qualified with "squadron." Everything I find tells me that your "RSTA" is my "ISTAR".
-- MCG 04 Sept 06
Furthermore, the proper method would have been to discuss the merge FIRST on the talk page and THEN add the tags once it's been decided. but as it appears so far, you're the only person that is suggesting a merge, both here and on the collaboration page. Nobody else is suggesting a merge. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 02:01, 4 September 2006 (UTC)
My appologies. I understood it to be a way to incite the debate. However, merger was discussed on this talk page, the RSTA talk page, and the collaboration page. -- MCG 04 Sept 06
I will conced one thing, C4ISR attempts to be an all encompasing acronym for what traditionally are two distinct groups
  • Group 1: ISTAR, RSTA, STA, STAR, and RISTA
  • Group 2: C2, C2I, C3I, and C4I
Perhapse it would be better to group the topics into articles along these lines, maybe even with an ISTAR category for the various units that fill this function (I propose ISTAR because its components encompas all the components of the related accronyms). C4ISTAR could be reffered to in each of the ISTAR and the C4I articles and with it include a link to the other. -- MCG 04 Sept 06
Could you state explicitly what you intend to do? I'm not sure I understand. It appears to be

1.Create an ISTAR Category - I'm ok with this. 2. add c4istar as a "see also" wikilink in each of the ISTAR and C4I articles? - I'm ok with this 3. Group the articles into a "group 1" and "group 2" subset. Have all group 1 articles wikilink to each other in "See also". Have all group 2 articles wikilink to each other in "see also" - I'm ok with this 4. write into ISTAR your army's definition of ISTAR.- I'm ok with this

Please feel free to add more to my 4 steps? SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 03:00, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

If we are looking for end-state proposals, I would suggest:
Note that the first and last article listed above would mention C4ISTAR and would link to each other.
-- MCG 04 Sept 06
Comments from .SWATJester in yellow above.
Then what about these:
-- MCG 04 Sept 06
I don't like the title. This one should just stay untouched as RSTA.” The crux of your argument is that “RSTA” implies a unit . This is untrue. I have put links above that paint “RSTA” as a task or capability assigned to a unit. The RSTA talk page also indicates this (in fact, you accept this but brush off the notion of having separate pages for the function/doctrine and for the US units). However, we can look to some of the more authoritive sites on the web:
ISTAR is inclusive of all that is RSTA, but is more international. You will find it in use by other ABCA nations & through the EU.
“RSTA” is not a unit, but there are “RSTA” units. “ISTAR” is not a unit, but there are “ISTAR” units. “RSTA” and “ISTAR” both describe the system/function of gathering information from the battle field (finding & defining the enemy) though “ISTAR” also considers that this information is processed. Both “RSTA” and “ISTAR” can be assigned to units as tasks/roles. Therefore, defining “RSTA” should be on an “ISTAR” article. RSTA units can be another article pertaining specifically to the organizations with this task in the US Army.
Please post your comments below. It will become impossible for anyone else to follow this discussion with you interspersing yourself inside of my paragraphs. -- MCG 04 Sept 06
I was never happy with the STA article I wrote (I couldn't find any doctrinal definition of STA and so had to use those weasal words and a few examples of units and equipment) and would be perfectly happy to see it merged into an ISTAR or C4ISTAR article, concentrating on the doctrine with maybe the See also section directing readers to the Royal Artillery STA units and equipment. Yorkshire Phoenix United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland God's own county 06:43, 5 September 2006 (UTC)
What would you suggest Yorkshire Phoenix? SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 06:40, 6 September 2006 (UTC)
STA could simply be listed as one of the subsets of C4ISTAR and redirected here (with maybe some STA units and equipment linked somewhere in this article)? Yorkshire Phoenix United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland God's own county 07:43, 6 September 2006 (UTC)


I really dislike the idea of any unit such as STA or RSTA that is actively identified by such title (i.e. 3/124th RSTA, or Marine 1st Reconnaissance Battalion STA platoon) to be redirected in any way. MCG has implied that there are units listed as ISTAR units the same way. Those need their own page. A prime example will be for the USMC: STA Sniper. I suppose we could take the DOCTRINAL aspects of STA/RSTA etc., copy them out of their own articles, put them all into one article: C4ISTAR. C4ISTAR would start with a disambiguation in the first paragraph to link to STA, RSTA and ISTAR (as they currently exist) then the information that was copied out of the STA/RSTA doctrine sections would be added into C4ISTAR. Thus, STA/RSTA etc. do not LOSE any information, but C4ISTAR gains information. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 06:03, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

In the case of specific units (STA), they are definitely stand-alone concepts and should have their own pages. At the top the neat {{Otheruses4}} DAB template (Wikipedia:Disambiguation#Template examples) can be used to simply state something like this article is about the US Marine Corp Unit, for the doctrine see C4ISTAR. On this C4ISTAR page we can have a two sections, one for the various forms of the doctrine (RSTA, ISTAR etc.) and one dedicated to units specializing in C4ISTAR with a short description of each. In both case each implementation/unit can have a sub-heading with a short description and where a page exists, include the {{Template:Main}} to point to that main article. --Deon Steyn 06:57, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
SWATJester, “RSTA” does not mean a unit any more than the term “Infantry” implies a unit (and as many times as you disagree here, you have accepted as much at Talk:RSTA); the terms imply much more. RSTA & ISTAR both imply units, doctrines, equipment, capabilities and practices. These terms are as similar as “mechanized infantry” and “motorized infantry.” Like “mechanized infantry” and “motorized infantry,” the terms “RSTA” and “ISTAR” should be in one article with separate articles for specific units
Your article should be US Army RSTA units and formations. There could be British artillery surveillance and target acquisition units, and there already is Surveillance and target acquisition sniper (USMC).
However, I am now in favour of having the parent articles as Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, and Reconnaissance and Command, Control and Communications (with cross reference between the two & each having its own set of subordinate articles). -- MCG 16:24, 11 September 2006 (UTC)


I still disagree with you. I don't believe that RSTA should be a redirect page: it should still maintain its own page based on the actual units, and as much as you disagree with me, my unit name is still 3/124th RSTA. You continually insist that RSTA implies more than just the unit: I'm accepting that. I am merely stating that the unit should be kept at the current page without a name change to the article, and the doctrine be moved to the higher level page and merged with the other articles. This is especially relevent giving the fact that the army is considering making RSTA a new MOS variant of both 11 and 19 series MOS (i.e. it will be linked into the infantry and cavalry fields, but have its own unique MOS identifier). SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 16:35, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

RSTA merge debate continued[edit]

You might have a fair argument if the US Army had a monopoly on the use of the term “RSTA,” but that is not the case. Do a Google search of “RSTA” and you will find that it is a recognized NATO acronym. It can be (and has been) applied to land, sea, air and space operations. “RSTA” is also used by defence industries in order to describe products which support this capability (in land, air, sea, and space enviroments).
NATO
NATO Maritime Aviation
NATO undersea
MCG 19:55, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
When did I claim the US army had a monopoly on the tearm RSTA? That being said, the fact that the US Army uses the term that way is significant enough to retain the articles name as it stands. I'm all for a world-centric view, and the rest of the world's uses (and the US's doctrinal uses) of the term can go in the doctrinal merged article. The US army is a major world organization, and RSTA is a major component of the US Army, and RSTA units are a major component of RSTA. Since you claim that I would have had a fair argument, you're by nature implying my arguments have merit. I've conceded to you on some issues (moving the doctrinal stuff into C4ISTAR article), can you concede to me on leaving the unit stuff alone in RSTA (just RSTA, not RSTA units?) and STA (same thing?)? We can even put at the top the FOR template at the very top of the pages. Below is what it would look like done as a template:
For the RSTA/ISTAR/STA doctrine, see C4ISTAR.

I'm trying to work with you here and be fluid, giving on somethings, but I have some things I'd like you to be fluid on, and that is the RSTA page name, and the unit-related content. We're both mature individuals, and I'm glad we've been having this debate, but we shouldn't lose site that the end goal is to find a compromise we're both happy with: Debating eternally gets us nowhere and improves nothing. Lets find a solution? SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 01:33, 12 September 2006 (UTC)

Would you feel more comfortable with the article moved to one of the following:
MCG 15:58, 12 September 2006 (UTC)

I don't like the 2nd one. Sounds like an essay. The first and 3rd ones are ok, but I'm not sure which one Il ike better. I'm inclined to go with the 3rd based on typical naming conventions. RSTA (U.S. Army) sound good? (make sure you get the capitalization and punctuation right.) SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 18:51, 12 September 2006 (UTC)

I think we've gotten somewhere. As a final point of clarification, would you want to see Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition (U.S. Army) or RSTA (U.S. Army)? -- MCG 19:56, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
For clarity's sake I'd like RSTA, but I can understand that the manual of style would want it spelled out. Lets do it for now at RSTA (U.S. Army) until someone has a fit over it, and changes it. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 00:06, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

Just to say, RSTA is very much a US term. It is virtually never heard in the UK. C4ISTAR is certainly a more recognised term and the entry here really doesn't do it justice. If anything I would suggest that the other more limited terms are disappearing and C4ISTAR is migrating towards being a key part of the network centric paradigm. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.4.129.140 (talk) 11:07, August 29, 2007 (UTC)

STA merge debate continued[edit]

Would a similar approach work for STA? It could be Artillery STA, Artillery Surveillance and Target Acquisition, Surveillance and Target Acquisition (Artillery), or something along these lines. -- MCG 00:58, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

The difference being it wouldn't be US Army: It'd be USMC. STA (USMC)? SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 05:21, 13 September 2006 (UTC)
There's already a STA Sniper (USMC). For artillery STA Artillery STA would be a perfectly good title as it often referred to as such (artillery STA Patrols or "arty STAPs"). I was going to suggest STA (Royal Artillery) to match the US Army example but the list of artillry units includes at least one from the Royal Australian Artillery now. Yorkshire Phoenix United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland God's own county 07:28, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

I like Artillery STA. I still think to follow style, we should have STA (USMC), as a disambig page: Links to STA Sniper, RSTA US Army, and ISTAR. Oh and to the Artillery STA's as well.. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 12:45, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

Why would the disambig page be called STA (USMC) if it linked to RSTA (US Army) and Artillery STA, both of which have nothing to do with the USMC? Yorkshire Phoenix United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland God's own county 14:21, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

Here is what I've done on the old page: Surveillance and Target Acquisition -- MCG 20:14, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

My personal feeling on this subject is SJ has too much personal ownership tied up in this article(s). See previous comments above about "don't tell me what RSTA is, I served in blahblah" (emphasis mine). Perhaps it would be best if he abstained from further debate on the subject and allowed people with more objective viewpoints to resolve this. ... aa:talk 20:26, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

There's not enough people editing these articles as is, and the comments you reference are expert opinion, not ownership. Where's the good faith Avriette? Funny how you pop in right after I call you out on something on your talk page, and say that I'm being subjective, right after we come to a compromise agreement that amicably solved our dispute SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 21:17, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

You've done nothing but squabble with other users on this issue since you came here. I think it's fair that you let others decide what is right for the article and tthe intarpedia. I think you are just too close to the subject. This is why I don't edit articles on Sun Microsystems or Sun Solaris -- even Mac OS -- and so on. I'm not capable of being really objective. I think you have to admit you are deeply entrenched in this article because you have an axe to grind. It doesn't seem to me like anyone's come to an amiable solution here. In fact, it rather seems that you've bullied people. Why not just step back and see what the community comes up with?
And as for our interaction elsewhere, I'm somewhat shocked that you mentioned in your RFA that you were proud of the way we had "resolved our disagreement." Nothing of the sort had happened. I don't see why you feel the need to start a forest fire.
Take a couple deep breaths and find something else to contribute on for a little while. You might find that when you come back to this discussion that you're more relaxed and can help fix things rather than insist on one particular way -- your way. ... aa:talk 20:12, 14 September 2006 (UTC)


No, actually what I'm going to do is ignore you, and ignore your baiting attempts. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 20:14, 14 September 2006 (UTC)

MCG: you still here?[edit]

Can we change C4ISR to a disambiguation page: For the journal publication "C4ISR" you mention in this article, it could either redirect to something else, or have a text entry, and for the concept of C4ISR, it would reference you to here, like it currently does. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 07:27, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Makes sense to me -- MCG 00:33, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
Done. SWATJester Ready Aim Fire! 06:57, 9 November 2006 (UTC)

The above discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.


What is real?[edit]

Which of these are actually widely used in military training or theory? It seems to me that C3I is a real abstraction of a military commander's problem. But "computers" are just a tool used in C3I (it's not like we had C2R "command, control and runners" replaced by C3IR "command, control, communications and radios"). Surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance are just ways of acquiring intelligence, no?

All get used, it just depends on which military one is referring too (and even which element within the military). I've even seem explanations that apply an acronym to a specific scale (ie: STAR or STANO are sub unit concerns, ISTAR & STANO are battle group concerns, etc). -- MCG 03 Sept 06

USCG[edit]

USCG Command Control and Communications

The United States Coast Guard is not mentioned here --> on purpose? Scriberius 19:52, 29 June 2007 (UTC)

Words of Wisdom[edit]

In the wise words of ED: This article is crap. You can help by deleting it. Kevin (talk) 04:31, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

No need of deleting it, but in its current form a normal person (or even an abnormal such) wont understand what the f*ck is it actually about...- Biohazard orange.svg Tourbillon A ? 12:51, 24 July 2008 (UTC)

New Topic[edit]

Wouldn't this article be best served by creating a list of C(x) numbers - either as a seperate topic or as part of the Command and control (military) page that already exists and moving any other information into the ISTAR article?Jellyfish dave (talk) 14:37, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

Well, it's taken me four years, but I have (at last) "done the deed"!
This page is now a "REDIRECT" to Command and control#Derivative terms Pdfpdf (talk) 09:46, 23 April 2014 (UTC)