Indirect fire support is critical to the success of all maneuver operations. To ensure the accuracy of indirect fires, qualified observers are needed to locate targets and fires. Forward air controllers (FACs) and firepower control teams (FCTs) provide the expertise for close air support (CAS) and naval gunfire (NGF) respectively. For artillery and mortar support, FIST personnel act as the observers, or eyes, for the maneuver company. The FISTs are attached to maneuver elements at company level during deployment for training or hostilities. They are normally assigned to the artillery units providing direct support to maneuver. Although the personnel and equipment in each FIST vary depending on the type of force supported, each FIST has (at least) a four-man headquarters. The headquarters personnel include the company FSO (an FA lieutenant), a fire support sergeant (an SSG), a fire support specialist (an SPC), and a radiotelephone operator (RATELO) and driver (a PFC). In addition to the FIST headquarters, a two-man FO party is authorized for each infantry platoon.
*Attaches with 3M adhesive
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