Urban combat poses specific challenges in communicating, traveling and isolating enemies from noncombatants. Tall buildings and underground tunnels stretch the dimensions of the combat zone and shorten the range of engagement, making warfare even more unpredictable.

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SOURCES: U.S. Army; “Street Smart” by Jamison Jo Medby and Russell W. Glenn

1) Eye in the sky
Satellites play a vital role in ground operations, transmitting reconnaissance photos and routing some voice communications and data transfers.

2) Preparation
Because urban combat zones are so complex and dynamic, excellent intelligence is critical. Strategists use intelligence to identify areas of interest, optimal corridors for movement and to assess potential threats. Soldiers are briefed on objectives before each mission. Once the operation begins, command control must react to a constant flow of status reports from the field. A city's terrain can change quickly during a battle, with streets becoming impassable because of rubble or large crowds of civilians.

Source: The Associated Press