Special forces  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Special forces and special operations forces are military units trained to conduct special operations. NATO defines special operations as "military activities conducted by specially designated, organized, trained, and equipped forces, manned with selected personnel, using unconventional tactics, techniques, and modes of employment". Special forces emerged in the early 20th century, with a significant growth in the field during the Second World War, when "every major army involved in the fighting" created formations devoted to special operations behind enemy lines.

Depending on the country, special forces may perform some of the following functions: airborne operations, counter-insurgency, "counter-terrorism", foreign internal defense, covert ops, direct action, hostage rescue, high-value targets/manhunting, intelligence operations, mobility operations, and unconventional warfare. The term special forces in the United States refers to the U.S. Army's forces while the term special operations forces (SOF) refers to all units.

Capabilities

Special forces capabilities include the following:

Other capabilities can include bodyguarding; waterborne operations involving combat diving/combat swimming, maritime boarding and amphibious missions; as well as support of air force operations.

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Special forces" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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