Sunday, February 14, 2016

SOF News

SOF Shopping for Weapons. Last month the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) sent out a shopping list to arms dealers that included AK-47 rifles, heavy mortars, and anti-tank rocket-propelled grenades. The Soviet-bloc weapons will likely be used in an anti-ISIS effort (probably Syria). Read more in "The Pentagon's Shopping List of Weapons to Fight ISIS"BuzzFeedNews, February 11, 2016.

UAE SF to Syria. The United Arab Emirates have been strong coalition partners in Afghanistan for quite a number of years - including the deployment of its Special Forces units. Now we have news that the UAE will also be sending its Special Forces to take part in the battle in Syria. They will be part of an effort to train and enable local Arab fighters who are motivated to recapture Raqqa, Syria - an Islamic State stronghold. Read "Carter Says UAW Will Put Special Forces in Syria", ABC News, February 12, 2016.

SF Soldiers Return from Afghanistan. Soldiers from the Utah Army National Guard landed at Salt Lake City International Airport on Friday night (Feb 12th) after a six-month long deployment to Afghanistan. (Salt Lake Tribune, Feb 12, 2016.).

SOF Construction on Fort Bragg. USSOCOM is funding some building projects on Fort Bragg, North Carolina in support of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) and the United States Army Special Operations Command (USASOC). The projects include a combat medic training facility, parachute rigging facility, and a tactical equipment maintenance facility. Read more in "Fort Bragg Bolstered by Continued Growth in Special Operations",, February 10, 2016.

New Resource for Special Operations Forces (SOF) News. Here is a webpage that lists government, military, and private sector webpages with news about Special Operations Forces (SOF).

SOF's Flintlock Explained. Flintlock (in the days that I remember participating) was about 10th Special Forces Group (with some participation from the USAR and NG SF groups) setting up a base in England, isolating teams for mission preparation, getting on a Combat Talon, and parachuting into a potato field in Germany at 0300 with weapons, food, blank ammo, radios, and other equipment to perform a Direct Action (DA), Strategic Reconnaissance (SR), or Unconventional Warfare (UW) mission behind supposed enemy lines against the Soviet-bloc nations occupying Western and Central Europe. Other variants included play in Norway, Italy, Belguim, etc. Nowadays (probably since 2005) the Flintlock exercise involves special operations training exercises in Africa. Read more in "5 Facts of Flintlock", United States Africa Command, February 3, 2016.

Norway's Female SOF Unit. Many of the European nations have been years ahead of integrating women into combat roles in their military. Read more in "Norway's 'Hunter Troop' - The World's First All-Female Special Forces", Foreign Affairs, February 8, 2016.

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