[LMB] Commo for intel ops
bkemper at bigdogz.com
Sat, 02 Feb 2002 10:11:21 -0600
My two bits on the long running discussion....
Communications (commo) is vital to any military or intelligence
operation. Its not something you forget easily...its up there with
weapons and snivel gear. In the military you usually have constant
contact unless you're on a long range patrol or something else more
"intelligence" flavored (don't want signals giving you away)...and
then you have to check in on a regular time period. For covert ops
you generally make periodic reports and have a bailout radio or
something for screaming "help come get me now/I'm running send the
pick up" type thing.
This is driven by function. Assuming that there will continue to be
some way of detecting emmissions for comms, it will likely to be the
1. If you are in a "hot" mission (guns out, kicking down doors),
you will have continuous comms to your overwatch, controller, and
"busdrivers" (whoever is moving you).
2. If you are in a stealth mission that has a strong possibility of
going hot, you will have someone monitoring continuously but there
will be actual contact only periodically, usually on a time hack
and/or on performance points. The person monitoring will be able to
provide backup, egress, intel, etc. as well as record your final
report as you lay behind cover, bleeding out and dying, if need be.
3. If you are doing intel or under cover work, it will likely be
only periodic reports through highly secure comms (encrypted and in
high speed squirts) to a relay, or through double blind drops.
These are the needs of those on the ground. The other side of the
equation is 'where is the cavalry?' This drives the means. If its
all in-system, you could tap commercial comms if not using onboard.
However, the question becomes what if you're in "injun country"
and can't have flagged vesseles standing by in-system. Being the
sneaky engineer I am, I have a simple system that ImpSec prolly uses....
1. Drop rock-looking or otherwise stealthy satellites monitoring
certain bands, looking for the correct encryption, etc. Set the
trip for "on" and scan another band for the "dump" command.
2. Have all flagged vessels with ImpSec elements be able to squawk
the trip and get the "dump".
3. Have non-flagged vessels have a contract with ImpSec to carry
sealed equipment that also does pickups...this increases the
frequency of pickup and doesn't limit Impsec to using stuff they
own. For all the cargo hauler knows, its a box of goods. You can
play fancy games with the dump, such as hanging on to data for three
dumps before dropping it from the cue to make sure the data gets to
ImpSec HQ. It wouldn't be good to have the data get picked up and
not make it home...redundancy is good, but has to be balanced
against operational security. This covers standard intel gathering.
4. If there is an operation where a Mayday is more likely, then
schedule more traffic to try to snag the signal and/or have a
stealth listening craft (like the current trawlers) in overwatch,
ready to bolt to the wormhole and scream for help waiting on the
5. Of course, having the cavalry hiding in-system if things are
really dicey *and* short term.
Bottom line....comms is something that is factored into every
operation. There is no 'one way' of doing things that you have to
use regardless any more than there is only one kind of weapon and
one kind of vessel. Being professionals, i would assume they have
their comms lined out well enough that if things are within the
mission profile it won't be the issue of "how does it
work"...someone has MADE it work. The bad thing would be on a deep
cover or long term op and suddenly things go bad....and THEN there
is the question of how long until someone hears, then how will they
respond, etc. etc. etc.
bart the sneaky