Today’s photograph features operators from the Royal Netherlands Army Korps Commandotroepen (KCT) working in an urban environment in civilian clothing.

KCT sniper in Afghanistan
Here, we see a KCT sniper in Afghanistan utilizing an Accuracy International Artic Warfare rifle. Circa 2010. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

Meet the KCT

The Korps Commandotroepen is the special forces unit of the Royal Netherlands Army. Founded in 1942 during World War II, it has a rich history of service in various theaters and operations around the world. The KCT specializes in a wide range of military disciplines, such as counter-terrorism, direct action, and special reconnaissance.

Here’s a brief overview:

  1. History: The origins of the KCT trace back to World War II. During the early days of the war, the Dutch government-in-exile wanted to create a special forces unit to conduct raids against German-occupied territories. The first Dutch commandos were trained in the UK and worked alongside the British Commandos.
  2. Training: To become a commando in the KCT, one has to pass one of the most grueling selection and training processes in the military world. The course includes the Basic Commando Training and the Commando Specialization Course. Only a small percentage of applicants make it through the entire process. Those who successfully complete the course earn the green beret, the iconic symbol of many commandos worldwide.
  3. Missions: Over the years, the KCT has been involved in various peacekeeping missions, combat operations, and other special operations. Their deployments have included missions in Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, Mali, and many other regions.
  4. Capabilities: The KCT is trained to operate in all types of environments – whether it’s jungle, desert, urban, or arctic terrains. They are also adept at amphibious operations. The unit can be deployed rapidly for various mission profiles, including:
    • Counter-Terrorism (CT)
    • Special Reconnaissance (SR)
    • Direct Action (DA)
    • Military Assistance (MA)