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Always Faithful, Always Forward

by Dick Couch

Established in 1986, the U.S. Special Operations Command was set up to bring the special operational disciplines of all branches of the military under a single, unified command to act on missions involving unconventional warfare, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defense, and direct action... The Marine Special Operations Command ("MARSOC") is the newest component of the military's shift toward a fully integrated Special Operations Command structure. At first, the Marines were strongly against any Marines serving under anyone other than another Marine. Then 9/11 happened. In the years following, Marine forces found themselves growing more agreeable to inter-branch operational command, finally forming the Marine Special Operations Command in 2006. Always Faithful, Always Forward follows the journey of a class of Marine candidates from their recruitment, through assessment and selection, to their qualification as Marines Special Operators. The assessment, selection, and training regimes are a combination of psychological testing and intense military training as well as being a physical and professional rite of passage. MARSOC Marines must be efficient, agile, independent, and prepared to live hard in the field. They are warriors trained in the full range of military skills, as well as teachers who can train locals to defend their communities and lead them in battle. But above all, they are Marines. Their ability to leverage their numbers by embedding with the locals and to live in remote locations has, in their short history, made them a valuable force and one with great utility in remote reaches of the world. Retired Navy Captain Dick Couch has been given unprecedented access to this new command and to the individual Marines of this exceptional special-operations unit, allowing him to chronicle the history and development of the Marine Special Operations Command and how they find, recruit, and train their special operators. INCLUDES PHOTOGRAPHS

Chosen Soldier

by Dick Couch

IN combating terror, America can no longer depend on its conventional military superiority and the use of sophisticated technology. We are fighting guerrilla wars, against insurgents hidden in remote regions, often deep among the local population. In battles such as these, squadrons of billion-dollar bombers and naval fleets mean much less than on-the-ground intelligence and the ability to organize local forces. That's why, more than ever before, we need men like those of the Army Special Forces--the legendary Green Berets. In Chosen Soldier, Dick Couch--a former Navy SEAL widely admired for his books about SEAL training and operations--offers an unprecedented view of the training of the Army Special Forces warrior. Each year, several thousand enlisted men and several hundred officers volunteer for Special Forces training; less than a quarter of those who apply will complete the course. Chosen Soldier spells out in fascinating detail the arduous regimen these men undergo--the demanding selection process and grueling field exercises, the high-level technical training and intensive language courses, and the simulated battle problems that test everything from how well they gather operational intelligence to their skills at negotiating with volatile, often hostile, local leaders. Green Berets are expected to be deadly in combat, yes, but their responsibilities go far beyond those of other Special Operations fighters; they're taught to operate in foreign cultures, often behind enemy lines; to recruit, train, and lead local forces; to gather intelligence in hostile territory; to forge bonds across languages and cultures. They must not only be experts in such fields as explosives, communications, engineering, and field medicine, but also be able to teach those skills to others. Each and every Green Beret must function as tactical combat leader, negotiator, teacher, drill sergeant, and diplomat. These tasks require more than just physical prowess; they require a unique mix of character, intelligence, language skills, and--most of all--adaptability. It's no wonder that the Green Berets' training regimen is known as the hardest in the world. Drawing on his unprecedented access to the closed world of Army Special Forces training, Dick Couch paints a vivid, intimate portrait of these extraordinary men and the process that forges America's smartest, most versatile, and most valuable fighting force.From the Hardcover edition.

Covert Action

by Dick Couch

First there was The Mercenary Option. Now IFOR, the surgical strike team led by former Navy SEAL Garrett Walker, returns in an explosive adventure charged with authenticity and suspense. COVERT ACTION Formed by a wealthy industrialist after the terror attacks on American soil, the Intervention Force is a professional strike team called in on missions others can't -- or won't -- undertake. IFOR has already defused a seemingly impenetrable scheme for nuclear annihilation; now they are called into one of the world's hottest zones. In the Zimbabwean province of Tonga, an outbreak of hemorrhagic fever has U.S. officials on the alert for bioterrorism. Walker leads his Black Ops team into the heart of danger in the African nation to unhinge the workings of two terrorist kingpins -- the brilliant Russian Pavel Zelinkow and Al Qaeda mastermind Abu Musab al-Zarqawi -- before a cataclysm is unleashed on an unsuspecting world. For "hard-as-nails adventure that will keep you riveted to your chair" (Stephen Coonts), delve into the IFOR novels from Dick Couch.

Down Range: Navy SEALs in the War on Terrorism

by Dick Couch

In America's battle against al-Qaeda and their allies, the goal of the Navy SEALs is to be the best guns in the fight--stealthy, effective, professional, and lethal. Here for the first time is a SEAL insider's battle history of these Special Operations warriors in the war on terrorism. "Down range" is what SEALs in Afghanistan and Iraq call their area of operations. In this new mode of warfare, "down range" can refer to anything from tracking roving bands of al-Qaeda on a remote mountain trail in Afghanistan to taking down an armed compound in Tikrit and rousting holdouts from Saddam Hussein's regime. It could mean interdicting insurgents smuggling car-bomb explosives over the Iraqi-Syrian border or silently boarding a freighter on the high seas at night to enforce an embargo. In other words, "down range" could be anywhere, anytime, under any conditions. In Down Range, author Dick Couch, himself a former Navy SEAL and CIA case officer, uses his unprecedented access to bring the reader firsthand accounts from the warriors in combat during key missions in Afghanistan and Iraq. Couch creates a pulse-pounding, detailed narrative of the definitive engagements of this war, while painting an unusually intimate portrait of these warriors in the field. The performance of the SEALs in difficult, changing environments--in the heat of the Afghan desert, in the snow-packed Hindu Kush, on the high seas, and in the urban chaos of Baghdad--has been nothing short of extraordinary. The SEALs, coordinating with other American forces, the CIA, and foreign special operations units like the Polish GROM, have once more shown their genius for improvisation and capacity for courageous action in leading the fight against this new and vicious enemy. The first battle history of its kind, Down Range is a riveting close-up of some of America's finest warriors in action against a deadly foe. Also available as an eBook From the Hardcover edition.

The Finishing School: Earning the Navy SEAL Trident

by Dick Couch

In America's new war, the first guns in the fight are special operations forces, including the Navy SEALs, specially trained warriors who operate with precision, swiftness, and lethal force. In the constantly shifting war on terror, SEAL units--small in number, flexible, stealthy, and efficient--are more vital than ever to America's security as they take the battle to an elusive enemy around the globe. But how are Navy SEALs made? What special training and preparation sharpen the physical skills and intangible character of a regular soldier into that of an elite warrior? In the acclaimedWarrior Elite, former Navy SEAL Dick Couch narrated one SEAL class's journey through BUD/S training, the brutal initial course that separates out candidates with the character and stamina necessary to begin training as Navy SEALs. InThe Finishing School, Couch follows SEALs into the next levels of training, where they further develop their endurance and strength, but also learn the teamwork and finely honed skills they'll need to fight with the best--and win. Dick Couch spent six months living with and observing SEALs in training for operational readiness in the months leading up to the Iraqi campaign. He follows them on the ground and in the water as they undergo SEAL Tactical Training, where they master combat skills such as precision shooting, demolitions, secure communications, parachuting, diving, and first aid. From there, the men enter operational platoons, where they subordinate their individual abilities to the mission of the group and train for special operations in specific geographical environments. Never before has a civilian writer been granted such close access to the training of America's most elite military forces. The Finishing Schoolis essential reading for anyone who wants to know what goes into the making of America's best warriors.

Navy SEALs

by Dick Couch William Doyle

Written with the unprecedented cooperation of the Naval Special Warfare community, here is the definitive history of the U.S. Navy SEALs, a thrilling chronicle that reveals the inside story behind the greatest combat operations of our nation's most celebrated warriors. New York Times bestselling authors Dick Couch--former SEAL, Vietnam veteran, and highly respected military writer--and award-winning author William Doyle draw on exclusive interviews with more than 100 special operators (including multiple Medal of Honor recipients), as well as thousands of pages of declassified documents to create a vivid, unparalleled portrait of the SEALs in action.Navy SEALs: Their Untold Story charts the dramatic evolution of the frogmen from their origins in World War II, when the daring Naval Combat Demolition Teams, Underwater Demolition Teams, Scouts and Raiders commando units, and OSS Operational Swimmers proved instrumental at D-Day, Okinawa, and many other critical campaigns. In the Korean War, the Navy UDTs cleared mines and scouted landing sites ahead of the main American forces. After their official founding in 1962 by order of President John F. Kennedy and early covert operations in Cuba, the SEALs came of age in the jungles of Vietnam, where they specialized in executing the most daring missions. Couch and Doyle trace their transformation in the 1980s and 1990s--when America's special operations teams were centralized under the U.S. Special Operations Command--including untold accounts from Panama, Grenada, Somalia, and the first Gulf War. Finally, we follow their rise to preeminence in Iraq and Afghanistan after 9/11.The SEALs and their forefathers have shaped the tides of history; from fighting Hitler to eliminating Osama bin Laden, the frogmen of the U.S. Navy are the spearhead of American military might: the toughest, most highly trained, best equipped--and most invisible--band of warriors. Now many of these quiet professionals, speaking for the first time, reveal what it's like to be the men living on the knife's edge. Navy SEALs: Their Untold Story gives these legendary warriors the epic chronicle they deserve.

Seal Team One

by Dick Couch

Seduced by the dream of grand adventure, Ensign James McConnell joined the SEALs, America's most elite fighting force. But his dream exploded on the steaming edge of the Nam Can Forest in Vietnam, to be replaced by the brutal realities of war.

Seal Team One

by Dick Couch

This now-classic tale of SEAL combat action in Vietnam marked Dick Couch's debut as a novelist in 1990 and sold more than 100,000 copies. Hailed for its authenticity, it was the first novel about Navy SEALs to be written by one of their own. Couch, a SEAL platoon leader in the Mekong Delta from 1970 to 1971, includes gripping descriptions of dangerous operations that continue to attract a broad audience, with many bestselling authors calling his book a sensational story they can't put down. This new paperback edition features a foreword by the former head of the Naval Special Warfare Command.

The Sheriff of Ramadi

by Dick Couch

In this ground-breaking book, best-selling author and former U.S. Navy SEAL Dick Couch reports on the actions of the SEAL Task Unit during the Battle of Ramadi in Iraq s al-Anbar Province between 2005 and 2007. When he began his research, the author thought he would be writing about the SEALs courage in the face of a losing cause. Instead, he discovered a startling success story whose importance has gone unrecognized in the war against al-Qaeda. Couch argues that the lessons of Ramadi, with SEALs fighting alongside regular forces in an urban war zone, call for using this strategy more widely. One of the most significant military engagements in the global war against terrorism since 9/11 and the most sustained and vicious engagement ever fought by SEALs, the Battle of Ramadi demonstrates both their code of brotherhood and ability to adapt in an urban battle space, which Couch identifies as the keys to the SEALs success on the battlefield. The story of PO2 Michael Monsoor, who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his bravery during the battle, is a compelling example of their extraordinary brotherhood. First published in hardcover in 2008, the book is now available in paperback for the first time.

Silent Descent

by Dick Couch

A U.S. spy has gone missing. A Navy Seal team is sent to bring him back.

Sua Sponte

by Dick Couch

Sua Sponte Latin for "Of Their Own Accord" The 75th Ranger Regiment's Motto Army Rangers are not born. They are made. The modern 75th Ranger Regiment represents the culmination of 250 years of American soldiering. As a fighting force with our nation's oldest and deepest tradition, the Regiment traces its origins to Richard Rogers's Rangers during the prerevolutionary French and Indian War, through the likes of Francis Marion and John Mosby, to the five active Ranger battalions of the Second World War, and finally, to the four battalions of the current Ranger regiment engaged in modern combat. Granted unprecedented access to the training of this highly restricted component of America's Special Operations Forces in a time of war, retired Navy captain Dick Couch tells the personal story of the young men who begin this difficult and dangerous journey to become Rangers. Many will try, but only a select few will survive to serve in the 75th Ranger Regiment. Sua Sponte follows a group of these aspiring young warriors through the crucible that is Ranger training and their preparation for direct-action missions in Afghanistan against America's enemies, anywhere, any time, and under any conditions. INCLUDES PHOTOGRAPHS

A Tactical Ethic

by Dick Couch

Following the success of his recent book on Navy SEALs in Iraq, The Sheriff of Ramadi, bestselling author and combat veteran Dick Couch now examines the importance of battlefield ethics in effectively combating terrorists without losing the battle for the hearts of the local population. A former SEAL who led one of the only successful POW rescue operations in Vietnam, Couch warns that the mistakes made in Vietnam forty years ago are being repeated in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that the stakes are even higher now. His book takes a critical look at the battlefield conduct of U.S. ground-combat units fighting insurgents in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since the prize of the fight on the modern battlefield is the people, he warns every death has a consequence. Every killing has both strategic and moral significance for U.S. warriors. From his unique and qualified perspective, Couch examines the sources and issues that can lead to wrong conduct on the battlefield, and explains how it comes about and what can be done to correct it. He considers the roles of command intent and the official rules of engagement, but his primary focus is on ethical conduct at the squad and platoon level. Tactical ethics, according to the author s definition, is the moral and ethical armor that should accompany every American warrior into battle, and these standards apply to the engaged unit as well as to the individual. A harsh critic of immoral combat tactics, Couch offers realistic measures to correct these potentially devastating errors. He argues that as a nation, we must do all we can to protect our soldiers humanity, for their sake, so they can return from service with honor, and for our sake as a people and for our standing in the world.

Tom Clancy Presents: Act of Valor

by George Galdorisi Dick Couch

Behind the secret missions. Beneath the official stories. Beyond the brotherhood?The Navy SEALs have been fighting terrorists around the world for more than a decade. And for all that time, the Bandito Platoon from SEAL Team Seven have been on continuous combat rotation. <P><P>Now they have drawn a shipboard assignment off Central America?an easy day.But for a Navy SEAL, the only easy day was yesterday.Act of Valor goes deep into the secret world of today?s most elite and highly trained group of warriors. When the rescue of a kidnapped CIA operative leads to the discovery of a deadly terrorist plot against the United States, a team of SEALs is dispatched on a worldwide manhunt. As the men of Bandito Platoon race to stop a coordinated attack that could kill and wound thousands of American civilians, they must balance their commitments to country, Team, and their families back home.But each time they accomplish their mission, a new piece of intelligence reveals another shocking twist to the plot, which stretches from Chechnya to the Philippines and from the Ukraine to Somalia. The widening operation sends the SEALs across the globe as they track a terrorist ring to the U.S.-Mexico border?where they engage in an epic firefight with potentially unimaginable consequences for America?In a powerful story of global anti-terrorism?inspired by real-life missions, Act of Valor combines stunning combat scenes, up-to-the minute battlefield technology, and heart-pumping emotion for the ultimate in action adventure.

The United States Armed Forces Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Survival Manual: Everything You Need to Know to Protect Yourself and Your Family from the Growing Terrorist Threat

by Dick Couch

Experts agree that the next terrorist attack on our soil will not come in the same form as September 11. The possibility of nuclear, chemical or biological attack is increasingly likely. The U. S. Armed Forces Nuclear, Chemical and Biological Counter-Terrorism Handbook will enable its readers to survive such an attack. It contains the best practices of the United States' military, completely edited and adapted for civilian use. For example, readers will learn how to:Gain knowledge of an impending chemical attack using a simple warning system; Protect against biological threats such as anthrax with a series of inoculations; Guard against fallout from a terrorist nuke; Achieve basic protection during chemical or biological attacks with a simple mask; and Administer first aid after nuclear, chemical or biological attacks with a simple first aid kit. It's all here. This handbook is the single most effective tool for civilians to protect themselves and their loved ones against the threat looming over our homeland.

The Warrior Elite

by Dick Couch

With a postscript describing SEAL efforts in Afghanistan, The Warrior Elite takes you into the toughest, longest, and most relentless military training in the world.What does it take to become a Navy SEAL? What makes talented, intelligent young men volunteer for physical punishment, cold water, and days without sleep? In The Warrior Elite, former Navy SEAL Dick Couch documents the process that transforms young men into warriors. SEAL training is the distillation of the human spirit, a tradition-bound ordeal that seeks to find men with character, courage, and the burning desire to win at all costs, men who would rather die than quit.From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Warrior Elite: The Forging of SEAL Class 228

by Dick Couch

NAVY SEALS ARE THE TIP OF THE SPEAR. They are able to strike without warning, anywhere, anytime. They come from under the sea, out of the air, and across the land. Their predeces?sors, the Navy frogmen, cleared the landing beaches during World War II, from Normandy to Okinawa. They led MacArthur's forces ashore at Inchon. In Vietnam, SEALs were the men with green faces who struck the Vietcong in their sanctuaries. Today they are deployed around the world -- ready, waiting, lethal. What does it take to become a Navy SEAL? What makes talented, intelligent young men volunteer for physical punishment, cold water, and days without sleep? Why is the price of admission to this unique warrior culture so steep? In The Warrior Elite, former Navy SEAL Dick Couch documents the process that transforms young men into warriors. SEAL training is the longest, toughest, most relentless military training in the free world. It is the distillation of the human spirit, a tradition-bound ordeal that seeks to find men of character and courage, men with a burning desire to win at all costs, men who would rather die than quit. The book follows the trainees of Class 228 as they struggle through the twenty-seven-week Basic Underwater Demolition/Seal (BUD/S) training course at the Navy Special Warfare Training Center in Coronado, California. Only one in five will be left standing at the end of this brutal ordeal, a rite of passage that is but one step in the long road to becoming a SEAL. Few men have the character or stamina that allows them to keep going while others give in to the pain and the cold. The Warrior Elite reveals who these men are, where they come from, and what makes them so special.

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