Welcome to the second episode of SOFREP’s nine-part series, Hereos of Special Operations. We’ve titled this one “Cut From the Same Cloth.” After watching the video, it will be clear to you why.

Moderating this episode is former CIA targeting officer Nada Bakos. During the war in Iraq, Bakos was tasked with tracking one of the world’s most wanted terrorists, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Some say that Nada was the inspiration for the role of Maya in the 2012 film Zero Dark Thirty.

On the panel are former Green Beret Jack Murphy, former Navy SEAL and SOFREP CEO Brandon Webb, former Recon Marine Bill Janson, and former US Air Force Pararescueman Dan Lake.


This video features a serious conversation among the guys reflecting on their experiences during and after their service, particularly in the context of the post-9/11 era. They discuss the indelible impact of teammates who have shaped their lives, the deep bonds formed under the stress of combat, and the challenges of reintegrating into civilian life. Highlighting the unique camaraderie within the Special Operations community, they talk about how this brotherhood has been a foundational aspect of their identities, influencing how they perceive the world and relate to others. It’s not just what you do; it’s who you are.

The men address the difficulty of relating to those who haven’t shared similar experiences, noting a natural gravitation towards friendships with other veterans who can understand the profound effects of war. They touch on the pain of losing friends in combat. This experience has prematurely aged them emotionally, likening it to what much older generations face as their peers pass away.

A recurring theme here is the perspective shift that service and combat experience bring, prioritizing relationships and fundamental human connections over material goods. They reflect on the societal disconnect that can occur, even in everyday situations like flight delays, where their life experiences provide them with a different outlook on what truly matters.