Author’s note: This is our third and final interview with CSM Mike Hall, and I hope our readers really appreciate the look into an often misunderstood tiny percentage of the U.S. military. If you have ever served in a special operations unit, you know how difficult and often frustrating it can be to try to explain to people what you did in the military; hopefully this sheds some light on that experience. Thank you, guys, and please continue to follow SOFREP for upcoming articles and interviews.

One of the strengths of special operations units is the ability to see what is needed and make a change, or react to a need quickly. One such change seemed to be the move to RASP from RIP; RASP seems to be not just a selection program, but a training program. What are your thoughts on the change, and how did it happen?

I think that was all internal to the Regiment and it was what they felt they needed to do. The selection processes for all the SOF units are getting small changes all the time, and those changes are based on what the units feel they need. USASOC is the approving authority within the SOF world, and the Department of the Army let us handle much of that. The specifics of it, though, are left up to the various internal commands. USASOC has to approve things like how the various SOF units get rid of soldiers, what the qualifications are to get into a SOF unit, and things like that.

Do you agree that as far as getting prepared for Regiment, RASP at least prepares a young Ranger to be more useful, sooner? The one thing that I really remember after graduating RIP was that, although I felt like I was capable of handling the physical side of the Regiment, being useful on missions other than just carrying stuff was something that took time. There were so many different missions that, until you cycled through all them, you often felt like you were drinking through a fire hose.