The 75th Ranger Regiment is a lethal, agile and flexible force, capable of executing a myriad of complex, joint special operations missions in support of U.S. policy and objectives. Today’s Ranger Regiment is the Army’s premier raiding force. With complexity came the need for smaller, robust command and control, and communications capabilities that could be quickly inserted and exfilled onto and off of the Ranger objectives.
Early-on, Ranger Commanders quickly realized that they needed a more robust command and control communications capability. Early single-channel and tactical satellite (TacSat) systems that came in by air-drop, helicopter air assault, airland operations or over-land were deemed not sufficient. Signal leaders and Ranger NCOs worked tirelessly to develop small mobile platforms that could be used for lighting quick raid operations. These platforms needed to be rugged, easy to operate, dependable, capable of carrying all of their communications equipment and, most importantly, able to fit onto US Air Force fixed wing aircraft; C-130’s, C-141’s, C-5’s, (and later, the C-17), as well as US Air Force Special Operations MH-53 Pavelow Special Operations helicopters and US Army and USMC CH46 and CH47 variant helicopters.
Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, and the start of the Global War on Terror, the Rangers’ primary Assault Communications platform was based on the British Land Rover. These platforms were customized and fielded to the Regimental Signal Detachment and each of the three Ranger Battalions to support secure single-channel FM, UHF and VHF as, well as secure TacSat radios. Secure Communications could be accomplished on-the-move and halt as well as remoted into buildings and structures via radio remote systems. The Rangers were instrumental in fielding technologies that allowed their radio systems to be remoted into the “assault cp circle,” or into a building on an objective.