(1) Whether the mission is within the capability of Army aviation.
(2) Whether the time deadline could be better met by Army or Air Force
(3) Whether the normal scale of Air Force coverage would be
instead of the much larger scale of Army coverage.
(4) Mission priority.
Army tactical air photography has a number of unusual capabilities which it
does not share with Air Force coverage. Some of these capabilities, which will
also be weighed in making a decision, are as follows:
a. Local pilots and photographers assigned to the local (organic) unit who
are fully aware of the mission, the terrain of the area, and the target, are
b. Local or organic photo interpreters are used, soldiers familiar with the
terrain of the area.
c. Low altitude missions are possible for all the reasons previously
mentioned. This permits coverage on a large scale which increases detail in the
pictures, enabling interpreters to spot small objects such as pillboxes, bunkers,
artillery pieces, road blocks, etc.
d. The negatives produced are local, that is they are not usually sent to a
rear area, making it possible to pull additional prints from them if necessary.
At times they are sent to the rear area or sent to a higher level for evaluation.
e. The Army system will function regardless of weather conditions. Missions
can be flown between rainstorms and under cloud formation, whereas the Air Force
craft may have difficulty getting below the clouds.
f. Certain disadvantages or limitations are also inherent in the system,
however. Among these are:
(1) Ability of Army aircraft to hover over enemy terrain. Because of the
low altitude and speed of the operation, the aircraft are more easily hit by
(2) Deep penetration into enemy areas is something Army photographers and
g. Should the G-2, S-2, or S-3, after considering all of the above, decide
to utilize Army aircraft, crews and photographers, the request will come through
channels until it reaches the military photographic agency who will carry out the
mission. This, of course, is where you come in.