(3) Signatures and characteristics of TOCs/CPs. The size of the TOC/CP and
the amount of activity in the area will vary with the echelon of command. CPs of lower
echelons are hard to detect because they are small, easily camouflaged, and the center of
comparatively little traffic. Division and larger unit TOCs are generally of such size, and
the signs of their activities are so extensive, that it is difficult to completely camouflage
them. Therefore, the detection of combined arms army and division TOCs is less
troublesome to the IA. The technique most useful in identifying TOCs/CPs is comparative
cover, which is defined as coverage of the same area or object taken at different times to
show any changes in detail. Main TOCs for division and higher echelons, however, may
often be located in castles, towns, or cities, with the elements of the TOC dispersed
throughout the buildings. Pinpointing the location of these various scattered TOC/CP
elements may be very difficult. The enemy will do all it can to camouflage and conceal the
headquarters; comparative cover should reveal signs of activity and lines of
communication and thus enable the IA to detect its location. In summary, comparative
cover is the best means of detecting a TOC or CP.
(a) TOC/CP Identification Features. Converging lines of communication
constitute the primary identification feature. Roads, footpaths, and wire lines converging
in the area are indicative of a TOC/CP location. A TOC/CP may also be located near the
terrain from which small liaison planes or helicopters can operate.
(b) Track activity. As already mentioned, tracks made by vehicles and
personnel are difficult to control and are often a good indication of a concealed
(c) Defenses. Small CPs are usually guarded by a few light weapons and
tactical wire. The perimeter defenses of large TOCs may include light or medium air
defense artillery gun emplacements, fighting positions, machine-gun emplacements,
antitank mine belts, ditches and tactical wire.
(d) Vehicles dispersal areas. The vehicles serving the TOC/CP are
dispersed within walking distances of the TOC/CP. They may be in woods, buildings,
revetted emplacements, or camouflaged with brush or nets. The identification of vehicles
in conjunction with other clues in the area may lead to the location of a TOC/CP.
Personnel visiting higher headquarters have a tendency to avoid walking by driving as
close to the TOC/CP as possible.
(e) Billets. The living area of personnel of a TOC/CP may show a pattern of
paths worn between sleeping quarters, messing, and latrine facilities. The billeting area
may include huts, tents, shelter trenches, or civilian dwellings and will usually be located
within walking distance of the TOC/CP.