Infantry Drills

6-120: L-Shaped Ambush

Previous: 6-117: Linear Ambush

6-120. An ambush in the L-shaped formation (see figure 6-8) is a variation of the linear formation. The long leg of the L (assault element) is parallel to the kill zone. This leg provides flanking fire. The short leg (support element) is at the end of and at a right angle to the kill zone. This leg provides enfilade fire working with fire from the other leg. The L-shaped formation can be used at a sharp bend in a trail, road, or stream.

Figure 6-8. L-shaped ambush

6-121. The V-shaped ambush assault elements (see figure 6-9, page 6-32) are placed along both sides of the enemy route so they form a V. Take extreme care to ensure neither group fires into the other. This formation subjects the enemy to both enfilading and interlocking fire.

6-122. When performed in dense terrain, the legs of the V close in as the lead elements of the enemy force approach the point of the V. The legs then open fire from close range. Here, even more than in open terrain, all movement and fire is carefully coordinated and controlled to avoid fratricide.

6-123. A wider separation of the elements makes this formation difficult to control, and fewer sites favor its use. Its main advantage, it is difficult for the enemy to detect the ambush until well into the kill zone.

Figure 6-9. V-shaped ambush

Next: 6-124: Final Preparations

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