Infantry Drills

2-16: Penetration

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2-16. A penetration is a form of maneuver where an attacking force seeks to rupture enemy defenses in a narrow front to disrupt the defensive system. Destroying the continuity of defense allows the enemy’s subsequent isolation and defeat in detail by exploiting friendly forces. The penetration extends from the enemy’s security area through main defensive positions into the enemy support area. The leader employs a penetration when there is no assailable flank, enemy defenses are overextended and weak spots are detected in the enemy’s positions, or time pressures do not permit envelopment. (See figure 2-4, page 2-8.)

Figure 2-4. Penetration

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Go Back To: U.S. Army FM 3-21.8: The Infantry Rifle Platoon and Squad