Monday, September 19, 2011

SEAL Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy SEAL Sniper

In SEAL TEAM SIX Harold Wasdin describes the repetitive selection processes that winnow out 99% of the would-be applicants to the best of the best of US Special Forces.  In his case, as in so many others, a harsh  childhood with a father who beat him mercilessly enabled him to develop a grit-your-teeth endurance that  would see him through the  rigorous physical training courses he would complete on his way to the topmost echelon of SEALdom.  The first course, for all  would-be SEALS, is held at the Basic Underwater Demolition School (BUDS) on Coronado Island,

Because Morgan/JD once said that while he and Townsend enjoyed swimming together, Townsend focused on the pleasure of it and he, Morgan, on how to blow something up, I have assumed that it was at BUDS that he developed such an interest. But Harold's story, though I am only halfway through it, has  put another  piece of the Morgan narrative together for me. I now know that when Juan-Carlos refers to Morgan's people as "the Indians,"  he is using the nickname the Red Team component of SEAL TEAM SIX selected for themselves, in homage to the original American exemplars of bravery, stealth, and cunning.(At the time Wasdin went through the program, SEAL Team Six actually included four individual 16 man teams, known by color. It was the  Red Team which always got first draft from the trainee course graduates.)

If Morgan was involved in it (and he would have been in the prime of his career at the time the teams were formed) the naming of this team may also been a tip of the hat to a predecessor group, the special operations axillary unit that Iain Fleming headed in WWII, known (by those cleared to know) as "The Red Indians."  It is common knowledge that Fleming, who  lived next door to  Sir William in Jamaica after the war, drank martinis with him and modeled many of his James Bond stories after him but I suspect there were some other hidden functions in that 'neighborly' relationship.  Whether or not Morgan ever knew about them is another story to be investigated some other time.

On another note, Wasdin also says the CIA's nickname in  Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) circles is "Christians in Action."   I just have one question: If the CIA gets to be the Christians,  who plays the Lions? Any ideas?

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