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A sniper sneaks up on his instructor

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“It’s more than putting a bit of grass on your helmet and thinking that’s sufficient camouflage.”

Shine, shape, shadow, and more… these are the factors a sniper must consider when working to remain hidden.

British Army instructors from 1 Royal Anglian conducted a stalking exercise where six potential snipers aimed to see without being seen.

“The role of a sniper is to locate, observe and destroy key enemy personnel and equipment by the use of indirect or direct significant fire,” said one of the instructors behind the course.

“What we’re looking for today is potential snipers using the correct use of ground, that is the biggest thing during the stalk.

“If they don’t do a proper IPB (intelligent preparation of the battlefield) map recce, they will walk out in front of the OP (observation post) potentially.

“Also, things like sudden movement, insufficient camouflage. Again if they’re like in some gorse bushes and they have elephant grass in their ghillie hood, we’re going to spot that straight away.”

During the recent sniper stalk, the potential snipers were deployed a kilometre away from an OP which they were required to approach without being spotted.

A sniper hikes the hillside.

Once in a position to observe the OP without being seen themselves, they would reveal the letter held up by the instructor to ensure they could see the position.

Of the six men who took part, only one managed to identify the letter correctly.

The factors snipers need to consider when keeping themselves hidden are Shine, Shape, Shadow, Silhouette, Spacing, Signature and Sudden Movement.

“It’s not like basic training, putting a bit of grass on your helmet and thinking that’s sufficient camouflage,” one instructor said.

“There are so many more considerations they have to factor in.”

From British Forces Net.

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