Hey, hey!  Special new stuff: a new episode of the SF Webcomic Podcast is out, featuring an interview with longtime 6-Commando friend and supporter and widely-acclaimed graphic novelist Jason Brubaker, and a discussion with Ewa, Christina Major, Ally Rom Colthoff, Ben Fleuter!  It’s a really great episode, so please give it a listen!

And ALSO!  Take the opportunity to get in on Ally’s Kickstarter campaign in the final hours:

Not out of the woods yet, here, folks, but a BIG chunk of it was last week.  Something like 1200 miles of travelling in two days.  This week will be a mere 300 miles or so.  Cake walk!

We’re getting there, though.  Until then, enjoy some more tasty, tasty military hardware.  I know it’s a poor substitute for a page, but it’s not cause I don’t care about you.  You know I do.

United Nations Alliance Battle Brigade
Table of Organization and Equipment

UNA Battle Brigades are the main infantry fighting formations instituted by the reorganizations undertaken after the Strategic Posture Review 1985.  So named in order to avoid confusion with “Armored” forces made up primarily of tanks and other armored fighting vehicles, they also form the bulk of UNA combat forces, although they are smaller in number since SPR-85 phased out unarmored infantry in front-line combat after 1988.
Battle Brigades vary in their composition to a larger extent than other brigade formations, and have on occasion been referred to as “Brigade Combat Teams,” although the term has yet to come into general use, and is a holdover from transitional formations from the earlier SPR-75 doctrine, which were called Regimental Combat Teams.  The typical maneuver unit of the Battle Brigade is the Armored Infantry Battalion, consisting of a motorized Command Company, a Cavalry Squadron, a Heavy Armored Infantry Company, and three Armored Infantry Companies.  Of particular note is that the Cavalry units assigned to Battle Brigades have organic anti-aircraft assets, which supplement the AAA units and laser assets attached to the Brigade Fires Battalion.  The Brigade also contains an Antitank Battalion, which has a variable composition based on the expected opponent, and typically consists of a mix of Armored Gun Systems and ATGM vehicles, both based on the Alvis Ranger chassis.
Compared to other Brigade formations, Battle Brigades have far larger numbers of both effectives and support personnel, with a full-strength unit numbering more than 6000, with a large maintenance, medical and supply tail.  In particular, armored infantry battlesuits require a great deal more maintenance, and armored infantrymen are more susceptible to injury and loss of battle effectiveness than tanks, since their suits place enormous stress on their physical abilities and require a great deal of tuning and other support to remain at full effectiveness.  Still, armored infantry formations are among the most effective combat units, and UNA Battle Brigades are among the best-trained and best-equipped combat units in the world.
Like Heavy Brigades, Battle Brigades were internationally integrated into a combined command structure beginning with SPR-85.  This task was incomplete by the time of Strategic Posture Review 1995, and full multinationalization of the UNA Infantry Branch has been set as a goal to be met before the next Strategic Posture Review, tentatively scheduled for 2005.  At present, the lowest level unit to be completely integrated is the Company.  Cavalry Squadrons assigned to Battle Brigades tend to be more integrated than Infantry units. Unit cohesion among infantry squads and platoons tends to be hampered by the fact that most armored troopers are trained as part of their basic service with their national governments, and so tend to work better with other soldiers who receive similar training.  Field-level multinationalization is likely to remain the primary policy measure for command integration for the foreseeable future.
Since the completion of SPR-85, the UNA maintains a total of forty-five Battle Brigades as the main constituent forces of the UNA Multinational Forces.  War plans call for expansion to 100 total in the event of open warfare with the FSR, 65 total in the event of war with the Arab League, and 75 in the event of war with the Southern Coalition.  Much like Heavy Brigades, these forces would be drawn primarily from national reserves, and this would likely further hamper the current plans for force multinationalization.  National commands have been carrying out exercises intended to cope with this problem, but results have not yet been fully assessed.

All the best, folks!