US Military Special Forces — The U.S. Special Forces team is an immense network of highly specialized, highly trained soldiers–its members representing every branch of the U.S. Armed Forces. Commonly referred to as ‘spec ops’, these soldiers use specialized knowledge, rugged tactical and survival gear, high grade weapons and artillery, and surveillance equipment and methods, and various other military gear and equipment to complete their missions around the world.
In this section, lets answer six of the most frequently asked questions about special forces in two branches: the U.S. Air Force and Navy.
What’s required to become a Pararescueman?
Pararescuemen are a variety of the toughest, highly-trained and elite forces not only in the Air Force, but in the entire military. Commonly known as ‘PJ’s, pararescuers must pass extremely rigorous entrance tests just to enter training, and upon entering, Pararescuemen are subjected to some of the most grueling, trying physical and mental training ever heard of.
Pararescuemen, once certified, proudly wear a maroon beret and have successfully completed training as paramedics, in search and rescue (be it by land-air-sea), and infiltration/exfiltration.
What exactly are ‘Special Tactics?’
Special Tactics, in the U.S. Air Forces, operate within the Special Operations branch of operations. These elite teams (which include PJ’s) teams conduct spec ops missions to bolster and aid air operations deep behind enemy lines. Combat Control, Special Operations Weather and the Tactical Air Control Command are additional branches of the Air Force Special Tactics teams.
What Special Tactics jobs are there there for officers in the Air Force?
Special Tactics ranking officers offer three officer positions to qualified personnel: Combat Rescue, Special Tactics, and Spec Ops Weather officer.
How do you move up to become a Combat Controller?
Combat controllers are more of the military’s elite personnel. Combat controllers have extensive air traffic control skills behind them; many of them also have a rich background in joint terminal-attack-control tactics and a host of other spec ops skills. Combat controllers have to complete a 35-week training course, where they acquire special mission skills. These personnel, once graduated, earn the right to wear the scarlet beret.
What does BUD/s stand for?
BUD/s is the acronym for Basic Underwater Demolition / SEALs. Developed specially for SEALS, this 7-week training course–which includes the infamous ‘Hell Week’–begins with what Navy officers call the ‘indoctrination’ phase. Following that, diving, basic conditioning, and warfare tactics by land are implemented in phases. Candidates’ health and overall fitness level must be 100% or even better.
How many soldiers actually ever graduate from BUD/S?
A. Approximately 1,000 soldiers begin SEAL training annually. Of the minuscule number that survive the first week of training, only around a half of those last past the third week; even fewer than that actually graduate. BUD/S personnel that make physical screening test scores of less than 800 are the ones who are likely to graduate the course.
Hell Week? What is that?
Ahhhh, Hell Week: located at the Coronado Naval Amphibious Base in San Diego, this is course is 132 hours of nonstop, physical and mentally intense training. Men are given only 4 hours of sleep during this period. Three-quarters of enlistees never make it past the first week.
Indeed, as soon as I heard about the Benghazi Libya Embassy attack on 9/11, I instinctively knew that there was much more going on behind the scenes. Why you ask, well, because I like to read spy novels, but I also like to stay up on everything.
I’d already heard that Al Qaeda was in the neighborhood, and they may have gotten a hold of surface-to-air missiles left over from the Gaddafi Regime and conflict there. Indeed, one could safely say that’s not a good thing, at least for the United States, which is one of Al Qaeda’s prime adversaries. Okay so let’s talk a little shall we, about the real world that is, not what you see on cable TV.
Perhaps to better acquaint you with things going behind the scenes in the world today, there are few books that you should probably read, and in particular, there is a very recent book that is a quick read, it will only take you a couple of days. This is a book I own, and I can highly recommend. The name of the book is;
“America’s Secret War – Inside the Hidden Worldwide Struggle Between America And Its Enemies,” by George Friedman founder of Stratfor, Double Day Publishers, New York, NY, 2004, 354 pages, ISBN: 0-385-51245-7.
In this book, you will learn all about Al Qaeda strategies and operational principles, and you’ll also discover the covert war which is omnipresent behind any regular war, or even around at the onset of actual military fighting. The book has an entire chapter on how military intelligence failures occur. There is also a decent chapter on what exactly happened during 9/11, and how these terrorists were able to slip through the cracks, and who was behind their funding.
The book goes into great detail about the funding and starting of the Department of Homeland Security under George Bush. It also discusses the war in Afghanistan, and the interesting international dynamics between Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Iraq.
The conclusion is quite interesting, and so too is the preface. If you’ve ever wondered what a dirty nuke might be like, and electromagnetic pulse weapon, or what might occur if a nuclear weapon, even a small one the size of a tactical nuke went off in a major US or large city anywhere in the world, you’ll definitely find out reading this work.
If you have any doubts or wonders why the CIA miscalculated regarding Saddam’s WMD, or Iran’s plans for a nuclear weapon, or the number of centrifuges they actually had running, that’s all in here too, along with the intelligence from the IAEA which was shared with the Western world. Indeed I hope you will please consider this, and I hope you read this book you will have a better understanding of how things really work in the world.
In ancient times, there was not one God, but many gods and the humans in ancient times believed that these gods controlled the weather, and created storms to harass, or teach humans a lesson and to keep them in line. Perhaps, this is why it seems like a natural for military leaders to want to use the weather as a weapon against their opponents. Just look at the destruction it can do? And, it’s true that weather often has decided the battle in previous wars.
When the Allied forces stormed the beach at Normandy, weather was an incredible factor, and it made all the difference. In previous wars sandstorms, typhoons, freezing rain, and other weather anomalies had determine the outcomes as well. What if you could make it hail on your enemy? Could that even be possible? Maybe not today, perhaps in the future it might actually be feasible.
There was an interesting article in TerraDaily Online News in the Weather Report Category titled “Bacterial Creates Hail Stones: Study,” by Washington DC Staff Writers and published on May 24, 2011. The article discussed a terrible hail storm in Bangladesh and the people were pummeled by hail, lightning, and a deluge of rain. The article stated;
“Bacteria have been found within the embryo, the first part of a hailstone to develop, in order for clouds to make ice, from which snow can fall, a particle must be present for the ice crystals to grow around, known as an ice nucleus. In order for precipitation to occur, a nucleating particle must be present to allow for aggregation of water molecules, these nuclei can be bacteria or other biological particles.”
Wow, so that means if you seed a cloud with bacteria you could help the hailstones glue together better, and become larger and stronger. A short time ago, I mentioned this at our think tank, and one of the thinkers reminded me of how the Russians once used cement dust particles to help form rain clouds, and unfortunately those particles caused giant hailstorms, and rather than providing the rain that was needed, giant hailstorms took out an entire city and caused horrific damage.
So much for experimenting with the weather right – apparently, the Russians learned something, how to make hailstorms. But rather than using cement particles and dust, it might be easier to use bacteria. And there might be some good uses for this as well.
For instance putting the right bacteria into the soil which would help strengthen a forest by helping out the root systems, causing the plants to grow bigger, thicker, and therefore pull more carbon out of the air, or revitalize a rainforest.
Well those are the good uses for all this, but what about using hail as a weapon for war, or a force-multiplier? If you were attacking an area which had a high mountain range you could seed the clouds as they approached that mountain range with bacteria to cause hailstones at the base of the mountain.
And depending upon the terrain you might be able to control where the deluge of hailstones landed within a region. Perhaps, on an enemy military air base seriously damaging all the aircraft, or stopping an advancing army. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.