Intelligence Section

This section was ostensibly responsible for creating maps, reading aerial photographs, interpreting captured enemy documents and equipment, and scouting terrain. The duties of the section could be nebulous; author William Manchester, an intelligence section leader with the 6th Marine Division, commented: “Mapping in the middle of battle? Questioning POWs whose language we didn’t speak?” Scouting was one of their most important duties, and often the section was simply utilized as an on-call reconnaisance force – hence their designation as “observers.”

"Sniper in the Thick of the Tall Reeds." Camp Pendleton, 1943.
“Sniper in the Thick of the Tall Reeds.” Camp Pendleton, 1943.

The biggest change in the organization of the section was the reassignment of the section’s officer to Battalion HQ.

Series D Intelligence Section (1943 – March 1944)

Bn-2: Intelligence Officer (Lieutenant)
Section Chief (Platoon Sergeant)
Record Clerk (Corporal)
Draftsman (Corporal)
Chief Observer (Corporal)
Chief Scout (Corporal)
Four Battalion Observers (Private/PFC)
Three Company Scouts (Private/PFC)

Total Personnel: One officer, twelve enlisted.

Series F Intelligence Section (March 1944 – 1945)

Intelligence NCO (Platoon Sergeant)
Record Clerk (Corporal)
Map Draftsman (Corporal)
Chief Observer (Corporal)
Chief Scout (Corporal)
Seven Scouts (Private/PFC)

Total Personnel: Twelve enlisted.

The information contained herein is based on the GHQ Table of Organization & Equipment #3, 1994.

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