Special forces which we see and talk about today has begun during the second world war, which happened in 1939-1945. The originals ones were mostly banned and have disappeared at the end of the war because their services were no longer needed.
The communism and nationalism were spreading very fast; it was against British ruling as well as that of their allies. It created a situation in military that required special units to stand by rather than regular huge army forces. Because of that need, couple units of special forces were established. As the time went by, different threats against British developed. But those couple of units met said challenges quickly and eliminated the threats.
Special Forces today
There are couple of various special forces units nowadays and they are SAS (Special air service), SBS (Special boat service), UKSF (Signals Regiment) and Special Reconnaissance Regiment. Areas of their expertise are counter terrorism, hostage rescue, counter insurgency, behind the line’s operations, undercover raids and plenty more.
They are being assisted by Aviation Wing who specialize in insertion and extraction of the battlefield, and also Support group for special forces which is called SFSG. SFSG is a group of soldiers from different fields. They have troops from Royal Marines and Air Force Regiment, 1st Battalion Parachute regiment. They are used if Special forces needs quick assistance for the missions. This can include large scale offense or blocking the enemy’s counter attacks or even securing and guarding the areas of the operations. They are all overseen by Director and staff, consisting of the best specialists.
How do the Special Forces recruit?
People are recruited from 3 branches of armed services; main ones are Army and Marines. Applicants must have at least couple years of services in their current unit. Recruiters come from Nepal, Ireland, Great Britain and Commonwealth countries. Women and men in these forces are not divided. They all perform the same tasks and roles.
Making the cut
This unit is very selective. Applicants need to pass hard physical and psychological tests. In the end, just a tiny percentage gets to become special force soldier. They have to swim while wearing a huge backpack, survive in a jungle, experience interrogation and learn how to resist it, march across Brecon Beacons which is a mountain range in South Wales and overcome many other trials. They train every day even when they are in the unit, because they need to meet required new challenges and become better, It is not possible to see what is going to happen on the field, that’s why they need to experience all the hundreds of situations that might happen.
It is not enough just to be physically strong to be in the unit. Teamwork and mental strength are just as important to conduct a successful mission. Troops must communicate in foreign languages, deliver medical care or execute precise navigational calculations. Each troop in the unit has unique strengths and together they are invincible. Sometimes applicant can have abilities that are required, but they are not always obvious.