September 22, 2012

War Stories: Navy SEAL Sniper School

In the spring of 2000 our eighteen-month work-up concluded with an Operational Readiness Exam (ORE), conducted off San Clemente Island, in which a small group of us simulated a covert tagging and tracking op on an enemy vessel. There were some tricky issues with water currents on the way back in, and things got sketchy. By the time we got back to rendezvous with our vessel I had run out of air and had a headache. But we passed the exercise. GOLF platoon was certified and operationally ready to rotate overseas to serve in an alert status, which the platoon would do after a little down time.

Before it did, though something unexpected happened that changed the course of my career in the Navy.


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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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  • webmindset1

    Damn, you covered more than I've ever seen in a post on ballistics and stalking. Nice. When I burn out my .308, I'll graduate to a .300 Win Mag. And to end it with the news about Bear brought back memories of friends of mine who've gone in because of malfunctions while jumping.  Damn. I've told my friends that if I inherit the earth, they need to beer up because I died happy, doing something I love. Thanks for the awesome post. Semper "Fly" MoDog out

  • templar 6

    Excellent; good read!  95, Mark was the platoon Chief at Alpha, Team 3 when we met. McRaven was the commander at 3 when I met him in his office upstairs. He was very supportive just a regular guy from the gate. I spent a year or so training with them off and on. Good mugs to the man, miss those days. Spent a few days at Colinga, tough windy range. Noma "the Zenmaster" was an amazing instructor. Allot of water under the bridge, from a POG. Thanks for your service, RIP to them all.

  • Txazz

    Outstanding, BW.  I loved this excerpt and thoroughly enjoyed every part of it, 'specially Glen's stories.  I remember about Bear, too.  Your stories keep them with us always.  You made my morning ever so excellent!  I know, I know I must get The Red Circle.  I have to say, this is one of your best "articles" posted on REP - ever.

  • Motleynomad

    BrandonWebb  I enjoyed this part of your book. BTW, the audio version was OUTSTANDING. Really enjoyed the intros to each chapter!!!! Very nice touch!  Well worth the extra cash.

  • Motleynomad

    A little over 12 years in the military (Navy+Air Force) and luckily I have not lost a shipmate to date.. Thank God. But without a doubt, of all the schooling I've had, my military training has been the best. I'm a graduate of not ONE but TWO Sere schools......Navy and AF...........Interesting thing, SERE changed 1000% post 9/11.  Can a flight engineer go to sniper school??? LOL