Regimental Reconnaissance Company

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75th Ranger Regiment - Regimental Reconnaissance Company
75th Ranger Regiment CSIB.svg
Active 1984 - Present
Country  United States
Allegiance  United States Army
Type Special Operations
Role Tier 1 Special/Close Target Reconnaissance
Size Classified
Part of US Army 75 Ranger Regiment STB CSIB.png Special Troops Battalion
75th Ranger Regiment Distinctive Unit Insignia.svg 75th Ranger Regiment
JSOC emblem.jpg Joint Special Operations Command
U.S. Army Special Operations Command CSIB.svg United States Army Special Operations Command
United States Special Operations Command Insignia.svg United States Special Operations Command
Garrison/HQ Fort Benning, GA
Nickname(s) RRC, RRD, "The Company"
Engagements

Operation Just Cause
Operation Desert Storm
Operation Uphold Democracy
Task Force Falcon
War on Terror

The 75th Ranger Regiment's Regimental Reconnaissance Company (formerly known as Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment/RRD). This unit is also known as the "The Company" referred to in JSOC as Task Force RED. It is the Special Mission Unit (SMU) that is rumored to be the newest operational member of the Joint Special Operations Command. The unit is believed to have become part of JSOC in 2007 due to its extensive training and unique capabilities to conduct special reconnaissance and close target reconnaissance (CTR) operations, and advanced force operations (AFO).

Disposition[edit]

Based out of Fort Benning, Georgia RRC is among the premier special reconnaissance units of the U.S. military.

RRD, as it was originally called, was activated in October 1984 with the formation the 75th Ranger Regiment Headquarters at Fort Benning. The detachment was tasked with providing worldwide reconnaissance and operational preparation of the environment in support of the 75th Ranger Regiment and other units within USASOC and JSOC. Traditionally RRD was divided into three six-man teams, each team to support each of the three Ranger battalions.[1] The unit has three primary tasks: Active Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Direct Action. While performing these tasks, the teams can:

  • Infiltrate the objective area by parachute (HALO, HAHO, or static lines), helicopter, fixed-wing aircraft, SCUBA, small boat, foot, or other means.
  • Remain undetected in the vicinity of the objective area up to five days.
  • Perform reconnaissance operations employing a full range of night observation devices, infrared detection devices, unattended early warning sensors, and photographic equipment.
  • Perform demolition target analysis.
  • Operate small watercraft and inflatable boats.
  • Emplace unattended ground sensors, omni-directional navigational beacons, hand-emplaced expendable jammers, and electronic target designation devices.
  • Collect combat information to satisfy priority information requirements and mission-essential elements of information. Teams report information by use of long-range, secure, burst-transmission communications equipment.
  • Perform drop zone (DZ) selection, marking and reception duties.
  • Report objective area weather conditions.
  • Perform highly selective, limited attacks or ambushes when so tasked.
  • Link up with the main body of the Ranger force in the objective area, or escape and evade the enemy in order to return to friendly lines.

When the 75th's Regimental Special Troops Battalion was officially activated in October 2007, RRD changed its name to the Regimental Reconnaissance Company (RRC) and opened its selection course to any soldiers in the U.S. Army who met the established pre-requisites.

Training and Selection[edit]

Since the unit's inception in 1984; the only candidates eligible for "operational" duty with RRC were members of the 75th Ranger Regiment who were traditionally seasoned Ranger infantrymen with the rank of E-6 or above. In 2007 this traditional selection practice changed when RRC was "supposedly" placed under JSOC's umbrella. The RRC selection course for operational-based positions is now open to any male soldier who is Ranger School graduate and Airborne qualified as well as graduate of the Reconnaissance Surveillance Leaders Course (RSLC). This was done in an effort to attract more reconnaissance soldiers from the U.S. Army, primarily from the Long Range Surveillance/LRS units within conventional Army forces. The unit is now open to male applicants from the United States Navy SEALS, United States Marine Corps Force Reconnaissance, and MARSOC along with 18 series United States Army Special Forces "Green Berets". All applicants must have already completed Ranger School and must pass RASP 2 before attendance. [2][3]

Recruits must attend a four-week selection course in mountainous terrain. Out of 10-25 candidates usually only 1-4 get selected. Following the four-week selection course which is administered twice a year (March and September), the candidates (usually 4-8 selectees) are thrust into an intensive 48-week operator training course (OTC) that includes Military free-fall training, advanced canopy control techniques, lock picking techniques for vehicles, houses and safes along with how to pick out of handcuffs and defeat any type of physical restraints, computer training and encryption, advanced communications, digital photography, photo editing, reconnaissance reporting formats, fieldcraft and stalks, infiltration and exfiltration methods, close-air support, advanced driving techniques, demolitions, tactical man-tracking, advanced field medical techniques, surveillance and surveillance detection training, advanced close quarters battle training as a solo operator, Ranger Assault Sniper training, multiple Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape SERE courses, and various other classified training courses. During OTC candidates are assessed every 3-4 months and usually half of the members who start OTC drop out or are dropped from training for not making the cut. [4]>[5]

  • The current recruiting drive is targeted at male soldiers in the ranks of Sergent through Sergeant First Class (E5-E7) from the infantry, field artillery, medical and communications military occupational specialties (MOS).
  • The company also has vacancies for infantry (MOS 11B) Staff Sergeants (E6) and Sergeants First Class (E7), communications and information systems operation Privates (E2) through Staff Sergeants, medical privates through sergeants first class, and privates through sergeants first class who are unit supply specialists (MOS 92Y) or automated logistics specialists (MOS 92A).
  • Limited officer vacancies include one infantry Major (O4) position, two infantry Captain (O3) positions and one position for a Chief Warrant Officer 2 (CW2) holding MOS 350F (all-source intelligence technician).

Combat operations[edit]

It is assumed that RRD/RRC was involved in Operation Just Cause in Panama in 1989 and Desert Shield/Storm in 1990/1991 as elements of the Ranger Battalions were deployed in both conflicts.

In 1994 the 1st and 2nd Battalions and a Company of the 3rd Battalion were en route to Haiti. The operation was canceled within five minutes of its commencement due to successful negotiations. While the Ranger Battalions were sent home, a RRD team was forward deployed to provide reconnaissance capabilities for Operation Uphold Democracy.

On 24 November 2000 the 75th Ranger Regiment deployed Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment Team 2 and a command and control element to Kosovo in support of Task Force Falcon.[6]

RRD has been constantly deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom as many of their skillsets have proven to be invaluable to the warfighting effort.[7] The RRD was placed under JSOC command to conduct Special Reconnaissance for all JSOC units.[8]

In November 2001, during the invasion of Afghanistan, the 75th Ranger Regiment carried out its second combat parachute drop into Afghanistan: a platoon-sized Ranger security element, including the Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment Team 3 conducted the missions: Objective Wolverine, Raptor and Operation Relentless Strike.[9] The Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment Team 3 conducted a combat military freefall parachute drop onto Wrath Drop Zone in southeast Afghanistan on 10 November 2001. This was conducted in order to establish a Flight Landing Strip for follow on combat operations. Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment Team 3 conducted a combat static line parachute drop onto Shiloh Drop Zone in southeast Afghanistan on 21 November 2001. This was conducted in order to establish a flight Landing Strip for follow on combat operations.

In July 2004, Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment Team 3 conducted a combat military freefall parachute drop onto Tillman Drop Zone in southeast Afghanistan in order to emplace tactical equipment.

In June 2005 members of RRD Team 3 were tasked to help recover the the bodies of the United States Navy SEALS killed during Operation Redwings. During this operation the team was responsible for hunting down and killing the remaining insurgents who had engaged the SEALS. The team members followed the blood trails and tracked the insurgents to their hiding places and killed them. Once engaged team 3 was also responsible for killing all of the re-enforcements that came to the aid of the Taliban fighters.

In 2006, a six-man RRD (Regimental Reconnaissance Detachment) team from the attached to the JSOC Task Force inserted into the Hindu Kush mountain range after intelligence indicated an insurgent chief, Haqqani, would be entering Afghanistan from Pakistan. After establishing an OP at a position almost 4,000m above sea level, the RRD team waited and watched for their target, as insurgents arrived into the area, the Ranger team was spotted and fired upon. In response, the RRD's attached JTAC called in an orbiting B-1B strategic bomber to 'pummel' the insurgents, an estimated 100 were killed in the airstrikes but Haqqani was not among them.[10]

On 11 July 2009, Regimental Reconnaissance Company Team 1 conducted a combat military freefall parachute drop with tandem passenger in Afghanistan in order to emplace tactical equipment.

From 2001 until present all RRC teams have been constantly deployed to countries all over the globe in support of combat operations. Each team deploys for at least 1-2 times per year for 4-8 months. They are one of the most heavily deployed elements of the 75th Ranger Regiment.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/agency/army/75rr.htm
  2. ^ former unit member
  3. ^ http://www.soc.mil/75th%20Ranger%20Regiment/recruiting.html
  4. ^ former unit member
  5. ^ http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/02/ATRecce070214/
  6. ^ http://www.soc.mil/75th%20Ranger%20Regiment/History.html
  7. ^ http://www.goarmy.com/ranger/heritage/regimental-special-troops-battalion.html
  8. ^ Neville, Leigh, Special Forces in the War on Terror (General Military), Osprey Publishing, 2015 ISBN 978-1472807908,p.314
  9. ^ Neville, Leigh, Special Forces in the War on Terror (General Military), Osprey Publishing, 2015 ISBN 978-1472807908, p.42
  10. ^ Neville, Leigh, Special Forces in the War on Terror (General Military), Osprey Publishing, 2015 ISBN 978-1472807908,p.238-239