has the maximum field of vision of the area to be protected. When the facility is enclosed by wire or a
similar barrier, the guard post is normally placed inside the wire. Guard posts should be located to
make maximum use of the minimum amount of resources. Guards on walking posts should be familiar
with places is which they may take up a covered position should the facility come under attack. Fixed
guard posts should prepare fighting positions.
Personnel. The number of MP needed to man a guard post depends on its location and visibility. For
example, at a small facility, only one MP may be required during daylight to watch two sides of the
perimeter. During periods of limited visibility, or night, two guards may be required.
Equipment and Communications. Guard post equipment should normally include a flashlight and night
vision device. The weapons, in addition to the basic combat load, will be determined by the situation.
In some cases, a machinegun may be emplaced in a fighting position. Communications among fixed
posts and the guard headquarters will normally be by land line. Walking posts may also have access to
land lines depending on the location of the post. Visual and or sound communications may be used
with the access control point or fixed guard posts. Man-portable radios may be required in very large
Functions. Observation posts (OP) look and listen for enemy activity within a particular sector. They
pay special attention to likely avenues of approach. Their primary purpose is to detect the enemy as
early as possible and give warning of their approach.
The OP team's task is to observe and report enemy activity. They engage the enemy only for self-
defense, or to cover their own withdrawal. The MP manning an OP fight or withdraw according to the
squad leader's instructions. They must be carefully briefed on the rules of engagement and the actions
to be taken under various circumstances. The OP team must be careful not to be drawn out of position
by a small enemy decoy force. They withdraw on order or to avoid capture.
The squad leader takes the team to the OP site. He shows them where to set up and marks the limits
of the sector of observation. He instructs them when and how to report. Members of the team should
be shown the withdrawal routes. The rules of engagement and the various circumstances under which
the team should withdraw should also be reviewed with the team.
Location. OPs are normally used in conjunction with a perimeter defense of a dispersed CP. The
platoon leader normally selects the general location of the OP. They are normally placed along the
perimeter where they can observe the most likely avenues of enemy approach. OPs may also be
located among the perimeter so that their sectors overlap. This is determined by the factors of METT-