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FM 100-63
FM 100-63
FM 100-63
FM 100-63
This manual is one of a series that describes a capabilities-based Opposing Force (OPFOR)
for training US Army commanders, staffs, and units. The manuals in this series areFM 100-60. Armor- and Mechanized-Based Opposing Force: Organization Guide.
FM 100-61. Armor- and Mechanized-Based Opposing Force: Operational Art.
FM 100-62. Armor- and Mechanized-Based Opposing Force: Tactics.
FM 100-63. Infantry-Based Opposing Force: Organization Guide.
FM 100-64. Infantry-Based Opposing Force: Operations and Tactics.
FM 100-65. Opposing Force Equipment Guide.
FM 100-66. Opposing Force in Operations Other Than War.
Together, these manuals outline an OPFOR that can cover the entire spectrum of military
capabilities against which the Army must train to ensure success in any future conflict.
Applications of this series of manuals include field training, training simulations, and
classroom instruction throughout the Army. All Army training venues should use an OPFOR
based on these manuals, except when mission rehearsal or contingency training requires
maximum fidelity to a specific country-based threat. Even in the latter case, trainers should use
appropriate parts of this capabilities-based OPFOR to fill information gaps in a manner
consistent with what they do know about a specific threat.
This manual provides a menu of possible organizational building blocks for an infantry-based
OPFOR, From this menu, users can build an order of battle appropriate to their training
requirements. For each type of unit, the manual outlines basic unit structure and possibly a
number of variations. For most units, the manual also lists principal items of equipment.
Appendixes provide guidance and examples for users who wish to substitute other items of
equipment for the baseline systems listed for a unit.
The proponent for this publication is HQ TRADOC, Send comments and recommendations
on DA Form 2028 directly to the Threat Support Directorate of the TRADOC Office of Deputy
Chief of Staff for Intelligence at the following address: Director, Threat Support Directorate,
ATTN: ATIN-L-T (Bldg 53), 700 Scott Avenue, Fort Leavenworth, KS 66027-1323
Nomenclatures of weapons and equipment in this publication are in compliance with
international standardization agreements (STANAGs) 2097 and 3236. Unless this publication
states otherwise, masculine nouns and pronouns do not refer exclusively to men.
This organization guide is part of the field manual (FM) series 100-60 that documents the
capabilities-based Opposing Force (OPFOR). This series provides a flexible OPFOR package
that users can tailor to represent a wide range of potential threat capabilities and organizations.
The overall package features an armor- and mechanized-based OPFOR module and an infantrybased OPFOR module, each containing FMs describing organizations, operations, and tactics.
Completing the package are FMs on OPFOR equipment and on other OPFORS in peace and
This introduction provides definitions of some basic terms used throughout the manual.
For definitions of other key terms, the reader should refer to the index, where page numbers in
bold type indicate the main entry for a particular topic. That page often includes a definition of
the indexed term.
The OPFOR is a training tool for preparing the Army to respond to a wide variety of
threats. The following paragraphs explain the difference between an OPFOR and a threat and the
relationships between the two.
Threat and Country-Based OPFOR
A threat can be any specific foreign nation or organization with intentions and military
capabilities that suggest it could become an adversary or challenge the national security interests
of the United States or its allies. As the Army moves into the twenty-first century, it is no longer
possible to identify one or two nations or forces as the potential adversaries against which it
needs to train on a regular basis.
When conflict is imminent or when US forces need to train for a particular contingency,
training may focus on a specified threat force. This rehearsal for an actual mission or operation
can involve a country-based OPFOR. Such an OPFOR should portray the specified, real-world
threat force with the greatest possible fidelity, based on the best available classified and unclassified information. Cases may exist in which constraints on the use of classified information or
the lack of information, at any level of classification, preclude the use of actual threat data. To
fill in gaps, in such cases, trainers could use those parts of the capabilities-based OPFOR that are
most consistent with what they do know about a specific threat.
Capabilities-Based OPFOR
In more typical cases, however, the US Army simply needs to train against an
OPFOR that represents a particular level of capability rather than a particular country. The
capabilities-based OPFOR is a realistic and flexible armed force representing a composite
FM 100-63
of varying capabilities of actual worldwide forces. It constitutes a baseline for training or developing US forces, in lieu of a specific threat force. This baseline includes doctrine, tactics, organization, and equipment. It provides a challenging, uncooperative sparring partner that is representative, but not predictive, of actual threats.
The capabilities-based OPFOR represents a break from past practices on two principal
respects. First, the armor- and mechanized-based and infantry-based OPFOR modules are not
simply unclassified handbooks on the armed forces of a particular nation. Rather, each module
has its basis in the doctrine and organization of various foreign armies. These OPFOR modules
are composites deliberately constructed to provide a wide range of capabilities. Secondly, the
modules do not provide a fixed order of battle. Rather, they provide the building blocks from
which users can derive an infinite number of potential orders of battle, depending on their training requirements.
The primary purpose of these FMs is to provide the basis for a realistic and versatile
OPFOR to meet US military training requirements. They can support training in the field, in
classrooms, or in automated simulations. However, users other than trainers may apply these
FMs when they need an unclassified threat force that is not country-specific.
FM 100-63
The infantry-based OPFOR represents the armed forces of a developing country with limited
resources. The name of that country is the State. The State’s military structure consists primarily of
ground forces. The formal name of this branch of the armed forces that corresponds to the US Army is
the Ground Forces. These Ground Forces are primarily infantry (dismounted or motorized), with relatively few mechanized infantry and tank units and perhaps some air-borne infantry units. Aside from the
Ground Forces, the State’s armed forces may include any or all of the following components:
The Air Force, including the Air Defense Command.
The Special Operations Command, with commando and special-purpose forces.
The Navy, consisting of a small, brown-water force.
This OPFOR can also include less capable forces, to include internal security forces, the militia, and reserves. This menu of possible forces allows US military trainers to tailor the OPFOR order of battle to
meet virtually any training requirement involving an infantry-based force.
Infantry-based forces are common throughout the developing world. These forces have some
armor but rely on dismounted or motorized infantry for the bulk of their combat power. At the most,
they conduct set-piece operations, integrating arms at the tactical level. None of these forces is capable