Harris Radio Contract for SOF. RF Communications Division of Harris Corporation has been awarded an estimated $390 million contract for tactical communications for special operations forces. (Signal, Sep 28, 2015).
U.S. Commandos Back in Pakistan . . . Quietly. Pakistan expelled U.S. Special Forces from their country over four years ago - but now (in a quiet way) the special operators have returned. From 2008 to 2011 the U.S. special operations element was under the command of SOCFWD-PAK or Special Operations Command Forward Pakistan. This unit actively trained Pakistan military elements to improve the COIN capabilities of Pakistan. Now the new organization is called SOCCENT FWD-PAK. Read more in "American Commandos Quietly Return to Pakistan", War is Boring, September 28, 2015.
CA Association Conference. Civil Affairs, at least back in my SF days, used to be an integral part of the Special Forces community (along with the Psyop folks). Somehow we let the CA bubbas slip away from us. At any rate, for those who are interested the Civil Affairs Association is holding a conference 19-22 November 2015 in San Antonio, Texas. Naturally it is along the riverwalk. I can think of a nicer place at a better time of year!
The OSS, CIA, and SF. Douglas Waller provides us with some history of how the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) morphed into the CIA and Special Forces. Read more in "How the OSS Shaped the CIA and American Special Ops", War on the Rocks, September 30, 2015.
SF Dependent Upon CF. Joshua Meservey believes that the U.S. Army Special Forces is a great force with important missions but he worries that cuts in the conventional forces will undermine the USSF's ability to do its job overseas. Read more in "Special Forces Are Great, but They Require a Strong Conventional Military to Operate", The Daily Signal, October 1, 2015.
Paper on Navy IW. A paper has been published by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) entitled Navy Irregular Warfare and Counterterrorism Operations: Background and Issues for Congress, by Ronald O'Rourke, September 25, 2015. It is available here on the website of the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) - www.fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/RS22373.pdf. If you try to access from a government computer you will get spanked! If you don't know what IW is then click here.
Paper - The Gray Zone. The United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) has released a 'White Paper' entitled The Gray Zone. "Gray zone challenges are not new. Monikers such as irregular warfare, low-intensity conflict, asymmetric warfare, Military Operations Other Than War (MOOTW), and Small Wars have all been employed to describe this phenomenon in the past."
Canada's SF & War Crimes in the Dark. The conservatives in Canada, if given the chance, will increase the size of Canada's special forces - adding over 600 members to CANSOFCOM. Yves Engler of Counterpunch (Oct 2, 2015) would like you to think that is a bad thing.
Navy SEALs and Women. It appears that the Navy SEALs are ready to allow women to go through its training. The head of the Navy's special warfare units says that women are welcomed to try but that the training is tough and expectations should be managed. He also worries that outsiders will try to adjust or lower the standards in an attempt to see women pass the rigorous training. Read more in "Navy SEALs ready to open doors to women", Navy Times, September 29, 2015.
SEALs, Silencers, Covert Ops, and Breaking the Law. A senior Navy intelligence official has been indicted in a covert weapons deal. Just a guy helping a brother out. Read more in a news report in The Washington Post, October 2, 2015.