"Fabulous! Of course, I know Huba Wass de Czege and Dick Leibert very well -- I'll order a copy immediately! I also note that the sales rank is very high; this bodes well for the coming debate on "air-strike-mech."

Thanks for the timely and welcome heads-up,"


"I am an Airlifter; during WWII I flew B-24's in support of OSI operations in Europe as a pilot in the Army Air Corps.. After that I despensed Troops and supplies from C-54's, C-124s and C-130s. Your concept melds with the C-5/C-17/C-130 capabilities!

I salute your thinking! I was once in the Pentagon in the USAF Studies and Analysis Group. The Army had no such thinking as that.

Where do I get the book??



"Sounds interesting. I subscribe to the 'move, shoot, and communicate' and 'get there firstest with the mostest' theory of warfare and this sounds like something along those lines. I firmly believe that the combined arms should possess a sensible balance of low-tech and high-tech weaponry. There are times when a meat cleaver will get the job done better than a finely balanced rapier. The real trick is knowing which instrument best meets the requirements of the task at hand.

(signed) An old Warrant Officer/Huey gunship driver

"Thanx--I will look this over with my Army After Next Seminar."

"I think that your concept is sound and appropriate to future war. Your ideas are consistent with Tuchachevski (Sp) who wrote in the 1920s. I will write more later. Am on the run.

All the best,"


"Congrats on your publishing.

I have asked that the Canadian version of "Amazon" -- -- list it. That's usually enough to get it added, especially because I threatened to buy it from their "great evil American nemisis," When it gets added you might want to add the link to your page as this might be helpful to Canadians (esp. those in the service.)

Great work, I look forward to buying my copy.


P.S. In your title, you may have short-sold yourself: proposing a fighting force which is fundamentally FASTER, your Phalanx will help you master the "4-Dimensional Space" of battle, i.e. X,Y,Z + TIME!"

"My son, Jim, has bought the book, so he's what he can to keep the world safe for tracks. He was an Army tanker. [his comments below]


Just wanted to let you know that I've done my part to keep the world safe for manly tracked vehicle warfare and ordered a copy!!!!!!!

Gary Owen!!!!!


P.S. If you were in the 7th Cav, Gary Owen is what you said."

"Whoowah book cover ... and timely manuscript! Looking forward to a 'personalized/autographed' copy - of course I will pay more for the book, since with the autographs it will be worth more!

Too early to tell about the AC/RC integration efforts ... not much new under the sun ...

Take care ..."


My name is MAJ XXXXXXXXX, I'm an Army Aviator with 17 years >experience. I have been an ardent supporter of Air Mechanization since I began reading the works of Brigadier Simpkins 15 years ago. I have worked Aviation Future Operations for the Army Aviation Center and have been a Battalion operations officer and Division planner at the 4ID(M), the Army's >first digital division. I had the pleasure of working with BG(R) Wass de Czege and MAJ(?) Jarnot during several of the future concept exercises held at Ft. Leavenworth and the Army After Next Project.

Please let me know how I can be of service to the group!



"Received your message. Not sure if you're looking for any input. I was a Aeroscout Platoon Leader for two tours in Somalia during Operation Restore Hope and Operation Continue Hope. Our company, C/2-25 ATKHB, flew in both peacekeeping operations and combat operations when UN peacekeepers (Pakistan) were killed in June 1993. We had to redesign our training for our OH-58 and AH-1 pilots scout-weapons teams to fly, fight, and engage targets in a desert-urban environment. Your book sounds very interesting-I am looking forward to reading it.


"I hope the book is selling well. I've only had time to give it a quick read but it was enough to convince me that your group is definitely on the right track (pun intended). Thanks for the informative footnotes, they really help the direct the reader to the resources needed for further research of the topic.

A couple of thoughts on how to get the book into the right hands:

The cost comparisons are quite persuasive. Have you given any thought to condensing them into a page or two and incorporating them into a cover letter that could be sent along with the book to members of Congress? I'd happily pitch in some money for copies for my Congressmen.

The Flyer 21 sounds a lot like a recce vehicle developed in South Africa. If I can round up the information on it, I'll pass it on. Below is a message from the sci.military.moderated newsgroup about ATV use in Norway that I thought you might find interesting.

From: "Per Lilje"
Subject: Re: ATV and like vehicles Re: British Bren Gun Carrier Date: Tuesday, October 03, 2000 12:07 AM

"The Norwegian infantry uses such ATVs (Polaris 6x6) very extensively. They are called Light Terrain Vehicle/Summer (LTK/S in Norwegian), and the units equipped with them uses exactly the same number of snowmobiles (Light Terrain Vehicle/Winter, LTK/V) in the summer. In an ordinary 'motorised' infantry battalion, there are about 45 of each of the Light Terrain Vehicles, they are used for scout units, mortar and artillery observers etc. The rifle squads uses the BV206 (SUSV) both summer and winter (a motorised infantry battalion has about 100 BV206). The 'jeger' battalions which are specialised for "hit and run" attacks against high priority targets (usually with fire from medium to large distance with Eryx, Barrett 12.7mm sniper rifle, mortars and machine gun) in the enemy's rear (to operate alone up to 200 km behind the enemy's forward forces) are almost solely based on the Light Terrain Vehicles (i.e. ATVs in summer, about 200 of them). Each LTK seats two Soldiers, an 8-man squad has 4 vehicles. A 'jeger' company will bring with it on its vehicles sufficient supplies for accomplishing missions for at least one week, including ammunition for two attacks for each squad and fuel for 300-400 km driving.

You can see a picture on and


Take care,


"Hello, my apologies to giving you my review of Air-Mech-Strike. I have been busy and last week I was ill. I apparently caught the latest bug that is going around. Yes, the book "Air-Mech-Strike" is very good and imformative. If I may give you my critique:

1.) It seems to be apparent that this book was written for former and active-duty military personnel. Also, much of the concept for Air-Mech-Strike is illustrated at the Geocities website. Without having read the pages at the webpage, you would not have a complete understanding of the Air-Mech-Strike concept.

2.) Too much space is given to describing how to use existing hardware to create AMS units.

3.) More emphasis should be placed on showing the utility of the AMS concept. I recommend putting in the descriptions of the recent conflicts that were covered by the website.

4.) At a couple of points, you diverged from the topic of the book. The sections on the wing-in-ground effect vessels and the ATVs was informative, it did not add to the discussion of AMS.

Other than these points, the book does do a very good job of illustrating the AMS concept. Was this meant for active and retired military personnel? That was one of the impressions that I got from the book. I highly recommend bringing this to the attention to members of congress.

In my final analysis of this book, yes it is good and it has a very significant message to how this country can improve its defense capability.

Thank you for the book."

U.S. Army Aviation Association of America (AAAA) Magazine, January 31st issue Major General (R) Ben L. Harrison writes:

"An exceptionally well-qualified group of concerned professionals has produced a most ambitious book detailing why and how all 10 Army divisions should be reorganized and re-equipped to provide an “Air-Mech-Strike” (AMS) capability, and what it would cost. This scholarly historical perspective is presented with ample footnotes. Published last August, it is at once timely and behind the power curve.

At the heart of the AMS capability is the substitution of light tracked armored vehicles for Abrams tanks and Bradley infantry fighting vehicles in heavy brigades to meet the Army's announced goal of creating medium brigades. At first I thought the authors' insistence on tracked vehicles just as arbitrary as the Army's choice of wheeled vehicles. They make a convincing case, however, for the new lightweight band track that reduces weight and performs quieter and better on roads. The track drive systems make the tracked vehicle lighter and give it a lower silhouette, while at the same time improving cross-country mobility.

Currently available vehicles are the German Wiesel as a 3-ton reconnaissance and security platform with a 4-ton personnel carrier version, but the primary personnel carrier — according to the authors — would be an updated M113A3. Use of a Kevlar-type material could improve the vehicle’s survivability and further reduce weight. These vehicles are proposed for the Interim Brigade Combat Team and would serve until the development of the Future Combat Fighting System. The imperative for selection of armored fighting vehicles (killers and carriers) is to remain light enough for helicopter tactical transport on the battlefield and C-130 intra-theater movement. Availability of the CH-47F is assumed for heli-lift of the 11-ton M113A3.

AMS capability presupposes the ability to tactical transport armored vehicles by helicopter. Several armies — including those of Russia, Germany, France, Britain and Australia — currently have such an AMS capability. Yet, the army with the most powerful and most capable helicopter fleet in the world, the United States, does not have an AMS capability!

The authors wisely encourage extensive use of FLYER 21 and 4 x 4 and 6 x 6 all-terrain vehicles and folding all terrain bikes for "dismounted" infantry. These vehicles obviously do not provide armor protection. They do, however, carry anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons — as well as still-developing digital acquisition and fire-control systems — and allow crew members to wear the new Interceptor Body Armor. The authors deem the current array of helicopter-mounted unmanned aerial vehicles as necessary.

The authors also encourage experimentation with “wing-in-ground effect” craft of the type the Soviets used in 1963 to carry 544 tons at 280 mph while “flying” 10 feet above the ocean. The book also makes a welcome plea for two full aviation crews for each of our helicopters.

In the authors’ plan, most of the Army's aircraft would be assigned to corps aviation commands. Each would have three brigades, and each brigade would have an attack, lift and support regiment. Each division (other than the 101st and 82nd Airborne divisions) would have a single aviation squadron with two troops of UH-60s and a single troop of eight OH-58Ds, as well as a ground recon troop equipped with all-terrain vehicles. The best thing that can be said about these rather radical ideas is that the authors did not try to justify this organization.

A glaring omission was the absence of any discussion concerning the Comanche!

In all, this book is a most impressive "think piece” contribution to the Army's current transformation process, and is a "must read" for all professionals interested in the future of our Army."

"Thanks for the great e-mail; it’s nice to know that authors take the time to read their 'press'! I wondered if you were under a time-crunch writing the book, but I never thought to combine your superb budgetary numbers (and that’s not idle flattery, they were great) with real world events.

I look forward to checking out the second edition; when will it be available?

For the record, you built a beautiful [UH-60L with Wiesel] model, I’m just not sure that a line drawing wouldn’t have been better! ;)

Thanks for a great contribution to maneuver warfare".

Subject: light mechanized vehicle
Date: Thu, 30 May 2002 22:10:59 +0000

"Reading your airmech page, eventually reading your suggestion to arm John Deere M-GATOR vehicles with recoilless rifles I couldn't help remembering the little known "Kraftkarren 0,75to" which was standard equipment for the german paratroopes in the 1970s until it was finally beeing replaced by the (more mobile, tracked and armored) Wiesel vehicle (btw, is it just a rumor or is it true that the Wiesel is in service with a US ranger battallion?).

The Kraftkarren however, was the german 1st airborne divisions carrier vehicle first for the 106mm recoilless rifle and then for the TOW antitank missile system. It enabled the german paras to quickly move their long range anittank assets on the battlefield.

Here are two pics: (site of the german BWB, the procurement agency of the german armed forces) (site museum of the german tank troops in Munster)

Unfortunately both sites are in german, anyway, they may give you the impression of what the kraftkarren with TOW or recoilless rifle might have looked like.

For pics of the Wiesel, IMO one of the best solutions for a lightweight airmechanized vehicle: (for the family of Wiesel veghicles in service with the german airborne troops; most notably the weapon carriers for the 20mm cannon, the TOW antitank missile and the 120mm mortar! ) (airdefence version of the Wiesel)

Hope my links were helpful,



Subject: Advanced concept for a airmech strike capability; humanoid biped robot
Date: Thu, 23 May 2002 05:05:10 EDT

"Please check out this website:

A small and (unfortunately) low budget group they are nonetheless trying to build a large sized, piloted humanoid robot for heavy lifting in difficult country. They were featured in the 'Whats New' section of the March 2002 issue of Popular Mechanics.

A biped legged vheicle is the only thing potentially more efficent than a tracked vheicle for cross country mobility. This is a attempt to begin to realize that potential. To build a machine with close to human like agility, for climbing extreamly steep and rocky country and manuvering between the trees through forests but be able to lift the load of a small cargo vheicle.

One potential market being investigated for the 'mecha' as it is known is to be a heavy weapons carrier for infantry units. Just like your proposals for the BV-206 and Wiesel, only with even better cross-country ability. To lift a similar load to places where only humans and pack animals have been able to traverse in the past."

Subject: Decisive Action
Date: Wed, 11 Jul 2001 08:11:55 -0400

"Thought this simulation might be helpful in validating some of the AMS concepts:

Also checkout a more tactical game due out next year:

Decisive Action is being used by the Army and POA2 by the USAF.

I'm currently in the middle of chapter 5 of your book. Lots of interesting stuff, I'm anxious to try out some of the concepts using Decisive Action."

A College professor writes:

" In Chapter 12 of your book you( at least in my mind) summarize your thesis by quoting Marshall Foch, who states that the key to victory is to have the greatest force at the decisive point. Your Air-Mech-Strike strategy does exactly that !

Thanks to your help and your book I think I finally grasp this point. I would like to add that if we fully adopted your ideas these ideas would also transform the way we think about foreign policy. The very fact that we are organized in this fashion would help deter our enemies. Now there is always the question in our enemies minds as to whether we will get properly organized to do something. If we adopt your ideas then our enemies will know that we are already organized to act. I can't think of a better example of the old Roman saying that 'if you want peace, prepare for war'.

I wonder if this couldn't be a good selling point for your ideas.



P.S. I just read an article that called the the Stryker little more than armored trucks."

A Canadian writes:

"Check out this article. The link from doesn't work, so here it is:

River crossing a heavy brigade. It's not too hard to see how an AMS force would help with the 2D crossing here while maintaining forward momenteum.

I am working on a book of my own--fiction, though. I need a description of what a night freefall feels like. Any thoughts on where to find it?


CGSC, Military Review: book review on AMS 1st Edition

AIR-MECH-STRIKE: 3-Dimensional Phalanx, David L. Grange, Huba Wass De Czege, Richard D. Liebert, Charles A. Jarnot, and Michael L. Sparks, Turner Publishing Co., Paducah, KY, 2000, 311 pages, $24.95.

"The U.S. Army currently stands on the leading edge of a wide-ranging transformationa transformation to a more deployable, lethal force than the current array of heavy and light divisions. In Air-Mech-Strike, David L. Grange et al., challenge the Army to look more closely at how it plans to maneuver forces on the next battlefield. Impressive in its scope of research and detail, the book is absolutely intriguing in the analysis of tactical employment. The authors have done an excellent job of gathering historical background from around the world; allies and enemies alike have struggled to solve the problem of operational agility. The authors reviewed German, Russian, British, and American efforts to combine ground assets with aerial platforms. It is clear throughout the various historical accounts that no unit successfully accomplished the marriage of air and ground down to the level articulated by Grange and his esteemed cast of co-authors. As a former member of the 101st Airborne Division and the 1st Cavalry Division, I am intrigued by the thought of actually providing increased firepower and mobility to light forces while allowing mechanized forces to take advantage of air assault flexibility. Imagine the possibility of air assaulting a mechanized company up and over the Tiefort Mountains to attack an opposing force from an unexpected flank. The same could be said for airborne or air assault troops having increased firepower and mobility on the airhead line.

The book's single greatest drawback lies in its poor editing and organization, which cause it to be exceptionally difficult to read. The book seems to have been hastily cobbled together to take advantage of the chief of staff's emphasis on immediate transformation. Unexpected font shifts coupled with grammatical errors make it difficult to absorb the material, thus reducing the message's effectiveness. The book should be restructured with appendices for tables of organization and equipment; historical chapters should be gathered in a single section of three or four chapters; and the annotation should be pushed to a final bibliography as opposed to strewn haphazardly throughout the text. The Korean and Kuwaiti situation maps do little to depict clearly how the proposed formations will fight in either theater; the same might be said for the various photos and slides found throughout the book.

In closing, I reiterate; this book generates honest thought on another possible method to increase agility and lethality on the modern battlefield. One of the strongest points is that most of the proposed structure changes take advantage of current, existing materials or technology. Commercial off-the-shelf ac-quisition is a key method of rapid development and testing of new concepts, and this book asks, in this era of Transformation, "Why not try this while we're at it?"

--CPT Captain Fred Wintrich, USA, Fort Polk, Louisiana


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