February 18, 2012

Becoming a Navy SEAL Sniper: Part Two

To prove the value of mental management and rehearsal, I would often relate a true story related to the topic. A Navy fighter pilot was shot down in Vietnam, captured and imprisoned for years in the famous prisoner of war camp the “Hanoi Hilton”. The pilot was an avid golfer back home, and to get through the extremely demanding situation, he would shoot rounds of golf in his head.

For years he would play his favorite courses perfectly in his mind. Eventually liberated and back on US soil, the first thing this pilot did was jump out of the military ambulance and onto the golf course. After explaining away his ragged looks (he was tall man and extremely skinny from malnutrition) he shot nine holes of golf at 1 under par. This was shocking to those that witnessed the event and when questioned about how this was possible, the pilot replied “Gentlemen, I haven’t hit a bad shot in 4 years!”


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About the Author

is a former U.S. Navy SEAL with combat deployments to Afghanistan, and Iraq. During his last tour he served as the west coast sniper Course Manager at the Naval Special Warfare Center. He is Editor-in-Chief of SpecialOperations.com, a SOFREP contributing editor, and a New York Times best selling author (The Red Circle & Benghazi: The Definitive Report). Follow him on twitter here.

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  • SEAN SPOONTS

    And this part did not post with my earlier comments, but if you actually check the 9/11 Commission report you will find that NEADs lost radar contact with flight 77, Flight 11 and Flight 93. They specifically faulted gaps in radar coverage and software problems as the cause. If you want I'll give you a complete run down on it, but it's off topic.

  • SEAN SPOONTS

    @LCpl X Just for the record, I don't think the Pakistanis knew shit about this in advance. We'd be 'nucking futs' to trust them with OPSEC on something like this when they're hiding OBL in their own country. I've know I've said this before, OBL was apparently a high probable on the location since a bunch intel things pointed in that direction, but if I were President I would not have risked an entire SEAL team and 5 helo crews to get just him when a JDAM or some other explosive delivery would kill him cheaper with less risk to our own people. That prospective intel find is the only rational reason a President would say; "O.K. we can put all these guys at this level of extreme risk for that. We might be able to break Al Qaeda for good with OBL's computers and files." The story I really want to read someday is about the people on the ground watching the compound and feeding that information back to Spec Ops Com. Who were these maniacs?

  • SEAN SPOONTS

    And you are wrong about the Chinooks too. According to reports they landed inside Pakistan about 1/3 the distance to the Abbottabad compound. About 38 minutes into the raid at least one of them landed at the compound and loaded up Bin Ladens body and the team from the downed Blackhawk. And the Helicopters were not slient. Pakistanis in the area were Tweeting each other about it; https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64800262354763776 @tahirakram very likely - but it was too noisy to be a spy craft, or, a very poor spy craft it was. about 9 hours ago via TweetDeck https://twitter.com/ReallyVirtual/status/64892915167657984 @kursed Well, there were at least two copters last night, I heard one but a friend heard two, for 15-20 minutes. about 3 hours ago via TweetDeck in reply to kursed http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20058790-281.html I do have a point and i don't think its invalidated at all by your sloppy attempts to refute it. You seem to have the Spec OPs fever where everything has to be explained with super high tech secret skunk works stuff. Do you want to quit now or do you want me to continue to bust you up?

  • SEAN SPOONTS

    O.K., tell me how the 2 Chinooks on that mission avoided detection? They have a radar sig like a zeppelin. Isn't it at least possible that non-stealth helos flew a route that exploited gaps in Pakistans air search coverage? On 9/11 we lost radar contact with gigantic airliners that were flying below 5,000 feet inside our own country.. Even the Soviets at the height of their military power had detection gaps in their radar coverage in the interior. So did we. We covered the borders pretty well, but inside the country we had gaps, plenty of them. If you were Pakistan would you have air search radars all over the Afghan border, which is not likely to attack you(and doesn't have an Airforce of any size or would you have airtight coverage on the Indian border ,which is your enemy and has a sizable airforce with nuclear bombs?. I don't think evading airsearch radar was a major factor planning for the Bin laden mission, or they would have left the Chinooks out of it.

  • Nicholas1234

    Are those guys SEALs...have a feeling it's Army SF but could be wrong.