Figure 3-67--Fire distribution by individuals of the rifle squad.
The platoon commander's order to his or her section
CONCENTRATED FIRE is directed at a single
of squad leaders assigns a mission to each section or
point. Enemy machine guns, bunkers, and heavy
squad; gives the firing position area each squad will
weapons are examples of suitable targets for
occupy and the targets it will engage; or the sector of
fire it will cover. In addition, he or she frequently
DISTRIBUTED FIRE is fire distributed in width
prescribes the technique to use in engaging targets.
for the purpose of keeping all parts of a larger-than-point
The section or squad leader's order prescribes the
target under effective fire. Each rifleman fires his or her
location for each weapon, the targets, and the technique
first shot at that portion of the target corresponding
to be used. In the absence of orders from the next higher
generally to his or her position in the squad. He or she
commander, the platoon, section, or squad leaders
then distributes his or her succeeding shots over that part
regulate opening fire and lifting, shifting, and rate of
of the target extending a few yards right and left of the
point of aim for his or her first shot. The width of target
he or she will cover will be the maximum on which he
or she can deliver accurate fire without changing his or
her position, as shown in figure 3-67.
The distribution of fire, to be effective, must be over
In PLATOON FIRING, unless otherwise ordered,
the entire target. Improper distribution results in gaps
each squad completely covers the target designated for
between zones and allows apart of the enemy to escape,
the platoon. This enables the leader to shift part of his
to advance, or to use their weapons without effective
or her fire to a new target or to remove a squad from the
line without leaving a portion of the target not under fire.
If the platoon leader does not desire each squad to cover
the entire platoon target, he or she assigns definite
sectors of fire to each squad.
The fire of a rifle unit is either concentrated or
In DETERMINING EXTENT OF TARGET, it is
distributed. The nature of the target, as given in the fire
difficult or impossible to pick out visually each
order, will determine in each mind of the rifleman the
individual enemy in either a dug-in or camouflaged
type of fire to use.
position. A muzzle blast may show the location of a few