Primary research work by John-David Karnitz
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Brigada Independência (Cobras Fumantes)
This unit is featured in the story Night March and will form a useful force for 15mm engagements. The Brigada Independência (Independence Brigade) hails from Brazil on Earth.  They are a large, regimental sized organization that eschews rigid battalion formations in favour of independent companies.  These companies will then organize under four battalion-headquarters units to form task-forces tailored to operational requirements.  They are currently led by Brigadeiro Elza Chahon, a small, fierce woman who started her career as an infantry platoon leader in the Brazilian national forces before eventually resigning her commission in order to serve abroad. The Brigade is known as the "Smoking Cobras" (or Cobras Fumantes) by its troopers, allies, and opponents alike.  Its lineage stretches back to the Second World War of Earth's history where it was an independent outfit that deployed to the European combat zone in support of treaty obligations.  The Smoking Cobras originally were stood up as the Joint Stabilization Mission Force (FCME), a strike force that was deployed to Alcântara in 316 TW.  The outfit went there to quell the unrest that had developed over the century since its joint founding between Brazil and Argentina.  At that time, the Brigade was evenly split between Argentinian and Brazilian national forces, with officers from one country commanding forces drawn from the other.  The organization was, perhaps predictably, fraught with problems, but it was seen as a necessary evil since both countries desired the fighting to end quickly and amicably, and both sought to see the natural order of things restored with no gain to the other.  Because time was so short, the FCME was initially equipped as a light mechanized infantry force using various light armoured personnel carriers and armoured cars with only a handful of light tanks and towed artillery for support. The FCME remained on Alcântara for two years, with companies being rotated through various operational areas before eventually being withdrawn back to Earth as part of a draw-down once the hostilities were concluded.  In the initial stages, the fighting was intense indeed, since both indigenous groups had managed to procure weaponry from outside sources to supplement the homemade small arms, support weapons, and mines they made use of at the outset.  The troopers of the FCME had their work cut out for them, since they fielded weaponry and equipment that was little better than the forces arrayed against them.  However, over time their superior training and organization allowed them to get the upper hand.
Symbol of the Brigada IndependÍncia (Cobras Fumantes) download PDF