Army's superdigitized force leads Hussein capture

The Army team that captured Saddam Hussein Saturday was from its most digitized unit, the 4th Infantry Division from Fort Hood, Texas, and Fort Carson, Colo.

The 4th Infantry, headquartered in Hussein's home of Tikrit since summer, is the Army's first fully digitized division, starting off as something of an experiment.

The unit has the most high-tech equipment of any division, including newer versions of the M-1A2 Abrams tank and the Apache Longbow attack helicopter, each equipped with thermal-imaging infrared radar that can sort targets as far as five miles away.

The unit is also among the first to be equipped with a series of Army Battle Command and Control Systems. While in Iraq, the unit has used the Force XXI Battle Command Brigade-Below system, which runs on ruggedized notebooks mounted in thousands of tanks, trucks, helicopters and other battlefield vehicles.

On Saturday afternoon, the division's 1st Brigade Combat Team'600 soldiers wearing advanced night vision goggles and armed with M-16 rifles'never had to fire on the embattled Iraq dictator because he didn't put up a struggle.

The soldiers participating included cavalry, artillery, aviation, engineer and special-operations forces, according to the U.S. Central Command.

Three other systems used by the division weave together tactical information:

  • The Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATDS) provides automated fire support command and control to Army and Marine Corps ground forces. It is integrated with other Army Battle Control Systems and is used for planning, coordinating and controlling all fire support systems.

  • The All Source Analysis System helps commanders manage intelligence and electronic warfare assets and feeds target information to AFATDS.

  • The Combat Service Support Control System automates the collection, storage, analysis and dissemination of critical logistics, medical and personnel information.

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