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Combat chart

Definition A combat chart is a type of military map specifically designed for use in planning and executing military operations. It provides detailed, accurate, and up-to-date geographical, topographical, and tactical information about a specific area of operation. The chart may include data such as terrain, obstacles, infrastructure, and enemy positions to support decision-making and mission […]


A combat chart is a type of military map specifically designed for use in planning and executing military operations. It provides detailed, accurate, and up-to-date geographical, topographical, and tactical information about a specific area of operation. The chart may include data such as terrain, obstacles, infrastructure, and enemy positions to support decision-making and mission coordination.

Key Takeaways

  1. A combat chart is a detailed map specifically designed for military operations, providing critical information like terrain, enemy positions, and troop movements.
  2. These charts help military planners and troops to strategize, coordinate, and navigate during various stages of combat operations like reconnaissance, planning, and execution.
  3. Modern combat charts may incorporate various data sources and technologies such as satellite imagery, GPS data, and real-time intelligence to provide enhanced situational awareness and support for decision-making.


The military operations term, “combat chart,” is important because it serves as a vital tool for planning, coordinating, and executing military missions effectively.

Combat charts provide detailed visual aids that display tactical information such as terrain, enemy positions, troop movements, and logistic resources.

With this information at their disposal, military leaders can develop strategies and tactics for various phases of a mission, identify potential obstacles, and allocate resources efficiently.

Moreover, combat charts facilitate communication and collaboration among different units, contributing to the overall success of military operations and ensuring the safety of military personnel.

Thus, combat charts are essential for maximizing operational efficiency and enabling well-informed decision-making in military missions.


A combat chart serves as a critical tool for military personnel for planning and executing missions, providing them with essential information about the battlefield environment to guide strategic and tactical decisions. Its primary purpose is to offer a detailed visual representation of the terrain, alongside key installations and infrastructures. These may include roads, water bodies, communication networks, and other pertinent factors that may influence the movement and deployment of troops and resources.

By consolidating this information, military leaders can accurately assess the lines of communication, points of resistance, and opportunities for maneuvering. This enables them to determine the best courses of action to secure an advantage over the adversary and maximize their potential for success. Moreover, a combat chart frequently features detailed intelligence data acquired from an array of sources, such as satellite imagery, reconnaissance missions, and human intelligence.

These insights enable military leaders to gain an in-depth understanding of the adversary’s dispositions, strength, and potential capabilities. By analyzing this information in conjunction with the topographical data, commanders can anticipate possible threats, vulnerabilities, and opportunities for exploitation. Additionally, contemporary combat charts may integrate real-time situational awareness feeds from surveillance systems, drones, or other allied units, allowing swift adaptation to the dynamic and rapidly evolving nature of the battlefield.

In sum, the combat chart remains an indispensable instrument for facilitating well-informed decision-making and enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of military operations.

Examples of Combat chart

A combat chart is a military map that provides detailed information about a specific area to aid in planning and executing military operations. These charts show terrain features, enemy positions, and other vital information for decision-making during combat. Here are three real-world examples of the military operations term “combat chart”:

D-Day Landings (Operation Neptune/Overlord): During World War II, allied forces used combat charts to plan the invasion of Normandy, France, on June 6,

The charts provided invaluable information about the coastlines, beach gradients, and German defense positions, ensuring that allied troops were knowledgeable about their objectives and able to navigate safely during the landings.

Operation Desert Storm: The 1991 Persian Gulf War saw the use of combat charts to plan and execute military operations against Iraq to liberate Kuwait. These charts included details of terrain, enemy positions, and targets for airstrikes. The accurate and up-to-date information provided by these charts proved crucial in the short but decisive conflict.

Battle of Ia Drang (Vietnam War): The first significant engagement between the US Army and the North Vietnamese Army took place in November 1965 in the Ia Drang Valley. Combat charts played a critical role in providing information about the battlefield, the locations of North Vietnamese troops, and the preferred routes for American forces. The use of these charts helped the US commanders to make informed decisions during the course of the battle.In each of these examples, the use of combat charts proved to be essential in providing accurate, in-depth information needed for the planning and execution of military operations.

FAQ – Combat Chart

What is a combat chart?

A combat chart is a visual representation used in military operations to display and analyze various aspects of a combat situation. This may include displaying the movement and positions of friendly and enemy forces, depicting terrain features, illustrating objectives, and presenting other relevant information for planning and decision-making purposes.

What are the primary uses of a combat chart?

Combat charts serve several purposes, such as aiding in the strategic planning of military operations, tracking the progress of ongoing missions, facilitating communication between different military units and personnel, and providing situational awareness to commanders and leaders.

What types of information can be displayed on a combat chart?

Combat charts can display various types of information, including the locations and movements of friendly and enemy forces, the positions of key terrain features, the status of mission objectives, information on available resources, intelligence data, and other relevant factors that can impact a military operation.

How are combat charts updated during an operation?

Combat charts can be updated in real-time or periodically based on the flow of information and the needs of the operation. They can be updated manually by military personnel or automatically through various data input systems, such as GPS tracking, sensor data, or intelligence reports. Updating the chart allows the commanders and other decision-makers to maintain situational awareness and make informed decisions based on evolving circumstances.

What role do digital technologies play in modern combat charts?

Advanced digital technologies have significantly enhanced the capabilities of modern combat charts. Digital systems allow for easy updating and distribution of information, better visualization of data, and seamless integration of various information sources. They can also enable real-time collaboration between different units and personnel, and provide decision-makers with powerful analytic tools to support their understanding and decision-making processes.

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Sources for More Information

  • NATO – The North Atlantic Treaty Organization provides comprehensive information on military operations, including combat charts.
  • U.S. Department of Defense – The official website of the United States Department of Defense contains extensive resources on military tactics, including combat charts.
  • U.S. Army – The official website of the United States Army gives insights into various military operations and strategies, including information on combat charts.
  • RAND Corporation – The RAND Corporation is a research organization that provides analysis and studies on various military tactics and strategies, including combat charts.

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