Navy Seals

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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NAVY SEALS         Do you think you got what it takes to be a SEAL? Chances are you don't. The SEAL's motto is "the only easy day was yesterday." (Web 1) They sneak in, accomplish their mission and get out without you knowing anything. These guys are the best of the best of the best, SIR!         SEALs have to do training first to see what it really takes to be a SEAL, while using some cool stuff in the process. The SEALs became the SEALs to carry out their mission in total secrecy.

        The SEALs weren't always the SEALs they are today. Actually, they started out as Naval Combat Demolitions Units which were formed in 1943. It consisted of Naval Construction Battalions volunteers. The NCDUs eventually evolved in the Underwater Demolition Team or the UDTs. Then they became the SEALs that you know today. President John F. Kennedy created the SEALs on January 8, 1962 at 1300 hours.

He wanted to create a Special Forces group for the US Navy. At first there were only two teams, made up of fifty men. SEAL Team ONE was assigned to the WEST coast and Team TWO was assigned the EAST coast. (Mays 1) Kennedy helped create some guidelines for the SEALs and what they were to accomplish. They were:         1. To develop a specialized Navy that could use guerilla/counter guerilla operations to include training of selected personal in a wide variety of many skills.

        2. Development of doctrinal tactics.

        3. Development of special support equipment. (Web 1) So President John F. Kennedy created the SEALs to do the dirty work, but how do they really become SEALs?         The US Navy SEALs must undergo lots of pain and suffering before they can call themselves of the group. It is a very grueling training process to determine who will stay and who will take the walk of shame. It's called BUD/s training and has 3 parts to it. This there training and what they must do. Their first objective is phase 1, nine weeks of training. In those nine weeks, trainees must take long runs and they spend lots of time in the freezing cold ocean. It’s to adapt to the cold environment since they spend so much time in it. After the first 5 weeks of training, they go through hellweek. It is five days and five nights of nonstop training. As the SEALs say, this is what separates the men from the boys. In those days, they get 20 minutes of sleep per day. The tough week starts at midnight with M16 and bomb sounds to wake them up. They are fed 7,000 calories a day to have energy but burn off lots of it during all the work they do. After 4 days of this training, they start seeing hallucinations because of all the things they must put up with. If they make it past that part of training, it's on to phase 2. It includes swimming long distances, navigation in murky water, what to do with equipment and how to keep from drowning. The main point of phase 2 is to teach the people about S.C.U.B.A. gear and other underwater stuff. After completing this section they move to phase 3 or the land related things. This part consists of Demolition/Recon/Land/Warfare. Also one of the ideas of President John F. Kennedy, to learn Land Navigational Skills and Small Unit Tactics (guerilla warfare). Although someone has completed the BUD/s training, they are not yet a NAVY SEAL. To become a true SEAL, they must complete a 6-12 month probation period on an active duty SEAL Team, including SEAL tactical training or STT. (Mays 1) When they are a true SEAL, they may wear the golden Budweiser or the trident, which is the coveted symbol of the SEALs training. (US 1) So they were trained to be SEALs with lots of cool things surrounding them and, they were also trained to use the best of equipment also.

        The weaponry of the Navy SEALs is a very vast array of weapons consisting of rifles to shotguns. The SEALs use the AR-15 A2 AR6520 Government Carbin, the Chicom Type 56 (AK-47), the 7.62 M14 semi or automatic, and the M16A2 R0701 which are all rifles. For machine guns, the Browning M2 HB .50 Machine Gun and the M60 E3 7.62 mm Light Machine Gun. As for the submachine guns, the Heckler & Koch MP5-N while the handguns are the Beretta M9 9mm, the Colt M1991A1 .45, the Heckler & Koch P7M113, the MK 23 MOD 0 .45 Caliber Pistol, and the Sig Sauer P226. The MK2, the Flash-Bang stun grenade and the M67 Fragmentation are there for grenades and the M79 40mm, the M203 40mm, the MK19 40mm Mod 3 are what they use as grenade launchers. They have some sniper rifles too, like the Barret M82A1 - .50 caliber, and the McMillan M88 .50 Caliber. They are set on shotguns also, like the Mosberg 590/Winchester 1200, and the Remington 870 Wingmaster 12-gauge. They also have their share of rockets. Their arsenal consists of a M-136 Anti-Tank, a M3 Carl Gustaf Recoiles Rife, a M72 LAW, with a couple of stinger antiaircraft missile launchers. Primary knife is the GI Naval Special Issue Commando K-Bar Combat Knife. (Kane 1) They got some pretty neat gear to use on their missions like a PAS-7 Infared Viewing System or the standard swim fins. For communication, they have a PRC-112 or a SATCOM. Finally on the missions out in the middle of nowhere, they carry a trusty compass. While completing some objectives, the vehicles they use a SDV - Swimmer Delivery Vehicle, a Desert Patrol Vehicle, a HSB (High-Speed Boat) or maybe a RIB. (Mays 1) Although the SEALs are very tough, they still take the time to organize their equipment. They have 3 categories for separating their gear, they separate into one for survival, one for mission gear and one for easy access gear. (US 1) There are some pretty cool things about the SEALs that are out in the open public also.

        The SEALs, you know their history and what it takes but, what does SEALs stand for exactly? Well it stands for the "Sea Air Land" team. that's how they come up with the Navy SEALs. The Navy SEALs have nine teams currently. In the year 2000, there were about 2,500 true qualified SEALs assigned to different units. (US 1) When you think of the SEALs, you think of water right. Well most of the missions have targets on land near water. They can operate almost anywhere with tremendous skill. Water and SEALs go together very well because one helps the other so much. The SEALs primary element of surprise is water. Most operations are operated in a reverine or coastal environment. If a SEAL feels threatened, it retreats to the water where event the keenest eye can not spot them. So I bet you are wondering what this all is like when put to together. Well the combat missions are the test and the SEALs are one of the best.

        The SEALs have probably been in many missions no one is aware of because of security. But some major missions are quite interesting, like Vietnam, SEAL teams one and two went to work. In Vietnam, the death rate was astounding, they had a 200:1 kill ratio over the Viet Cong. In fact, the SEALs became known as the "Devils with Green Faces" to the Vietnam troops. (Web 1) Grenada wasn't as successful. The SEALs were ordered in 1983, to move into Grenada to protect US citizens and take over. Teams four and six were put to the test, the mission was basically a failure. Four SEALs were killed and eight seriously wounded. With Grenada being a disaster, the SEALs were sent to capture Manuel Noriega who was wanted for drug smuggling in the US. Once again, SEAL team four was put to the test. The mission had many pros and cons just like Grenada. Operation Earnest Will was set into play in 1987 and ended in1989. Another SEAL mission was to stop the Iranians from planting mines in the water where lots of the world's oil tankers went by. After these missions came one in Kuwait where Iraq was invading Kuwait. This was occurring in August of 1990. SEAL team five was sent in along with Navy Special Boat Units, and three Kuwait combat craft and marine units. Soon after that, SEAL teams one and three were in there as well. (US 1) There are many more missions that have occurred between when they were created and now, but some are classified information. So basically, the SEALs were used in many different operations with many different objectives.

        So from the intense training to the vast history, the SEALs are a cool bunch of people. They go on missions for their countries while using some cool gear too. The SEALs are the elite group of the US Navy. They have to sneak in and out without being seen or killed. They are the best of the best, which's why they're part of the Special Forces groups. Like their motto says, the only easy day was yesterday is exactly true for the US Navy SEALs.