Combat Controller - Air Force Special Operations Command

48 Hours With the Military's Most Covert Special Ops

But if you're going to pay a visit to the wizard, better to to do it in the training pool than in the ocean downrange, freezing and laden with gear. Still, they have a storied history of heroism and going above and beyond the call of duty. It ain't easy. This allows them to report back with precise details of weather conditions on the ground and make weather forecasts much more accurate than would otherwise be possible, affecting the timing and tactics of major Air Force operations.

He took second place, moving past the Marines and the Navy before losing the final match to the Army's best wrestler—a giant of a man, based on the photo he showed me of the match.

Everyone passes out in the pool at least once, and most lose consciousness about three times before the training is over. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. SOWTs were seen as unnecessary with the advent of weather forecasting technology. The men carry infrared flashlights on their kits as well, and again, the beam of light is more illuminating than any ordinary flashlight—but when I pull the night vision away from my eyes, I can't see a damn thing.

An adversary may hope to achieve air supremacy or protect itself from air attack first by attacking airbases , aircraft and other assets on the ground. They train foreign aviation units to do specialized missions. Archived from the original on 15 March These include extensive physical fitness tests and tests of swimming skills. Using simulators more means a pilot or aircrew member can take to the air for real, and likely spend more time at home rather than traveling to aerial ranges far from their home station, officials said.

While they fight alongside the most highly trained warriors in the world, they're simultaneously talking with pilots and stacking aircraft over a target. Our candidates, whenever we bring them into our program…we can usually have them ready, passing the physical fitness standards, depending on their mental capacity…and resiliency, in about three-to-four months.

Operation Fluid Drive , Lebanon. An Air Force combat controller's duties can include everything from directing an airplane to engaging in combat. Pararescuemen are experts in battlefield and emergency medicine and combat tactics, and train to operate in a range of environments. As we tear through the trails and over the dunes, snapping branches and throwing up sand, I hear the navigator issuing orders through the radio.

They are rare within the Air Force special operations community, however. Aircraft are most vulnerable when on the ground, to offensive counter air operations, and most cannot operate without fixed infrastructure, consumables, and trained personnel.

Here the trainee acquires a large volume of information such as how to recognize aircraft, air traffic rules, communication skills and radar skills. Southern Strike is a large-scale, joint multinational combat exercise that provides tactical level training for the full spectrum of conflict. Operation Safe Passage , Afghanistan.