The Marines are spending $10 million on a squad battle course down at Camp Lejeune. When you read Thursday’s contract announcement, it becomes clear pretty quickly that a squad battle course isn’t simply a battlefield (whatever that is these days).
Nope. War’s gotten way too complex for a mere field.
Here’s what the Marines are paying for:
The construction of the 82-acre course will include grading, soil placement, a range control tower, combined facility, covered bleacher enclosure, covered mess enclosure, and ammunition breakdown enclosure, range layout and target emplacements. Work shall also include a battle sight zero range, three power center emplacements, trench obstacles, a firing berm, three offense/defense facades, four limit markers, and a public address system. Exterior improvements include gravel surfaces and roadways for parking, access, service vehicles, and staging area for drop off, as well as a vehicular access gate, a concrete pad for tank trail crossing on Route 172, and building utility (water, sanitary, septic, electrical, and telecommunication) systems. Work also includes the installation of overhead electrical and direct buried data system infrastructure, and the installation of water supply infrastructure and sanitary sewer infrastructure.
The original solicitation adds some more detail:
Constructs an infantry squad battle course (ISBC) of 51 stationary infantry targets, two stationary infantry targets/hostile fire, four moving infantry targets, four stationary armor targets, two moving armor target, six hostile fire simulators, six machine gun bunkers, two mortar simulation devices, ammunition bunker, machine gun bunker, firing positions and firing berms.
Project will include a range control tower, Combined Facility (includes a field service head, operations/storage, general instruction and target storage), covered bleacher enclosure, covered mess, ammunition breakdown building, bivouac area and target emplacements. Facility construction will be of interior and exterior reinforced masonry walls on pile foundations with structural steel framing and reinforced concrete foundations. This project will include an explosive ordnance sweep and potential unexploded ordnance removal since it will be located within the G-10 impact area buffer zone.
Wonder what Chesty Puller would say?