Froggy Ruminations%3A SEALs %26 Swift boats

A SEAL Speaks:

Now here is someone who will know the answer to Hugh's question: were swift boats used for insertion operations? This fellow is a former SEAL, and the son of a SEAL to boot. He says no; the SF used swift boats, but not the SEALs; and swifties were definitely not for cross-border insertions.

I've met a couple of SEALs in my time. Very impressive lads. Not so much their physical prowess, although that is extremely high; still, I've met their equals from other services (although not their betters). What is really impressive to me is the combination of that physical prowess with the technical expertise. The SEALs I've known have always been highly technical: in addition to SCUBA gear, and being trained paratroopers, they were also competent with at least one other piece of machinery that would normally be an operational specialty on its own. One of the guys I knew was an electronic weapons officer for a Naval fighter; the other trained dolphins and knew how to use several kinds of underwater equipment.

SF are impressive too, don't get me wrong. Their language skills are something I've always aspired to myself, although I've lacked both the training and the chance to travel as widely. Everyone's heard of how physically difficult the Q-course is, but the real trick is the DLAB (Defense Language Aptitude Battery). I took it once and scored an 82, but you have to have scored at least an 85 to pass. It's an artificial language test, very tricky but a lot of fun. I did very well on the written portion, but my hearing isn't great and the listening portion wrecked my score. Alas, misspent youth, gunfire without adequate hearing protection, etc.

Anyway, you can go and read what this hero and son of a hero has to say. His father was there; he asked him too.

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