Religion in the SEAL Teams

Gunz

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I called it after the stupid Satan question and backed off because some of you cats thought I was being too tough on this crazy broad.

I know a crazy broad when I see one. There were times I had to climb out my fucking bathroom window at night.
 
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RackMaster

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Hey OP how about a picture of yourself so we know what we are working with? You know for the recruiting poster.

Literally, for science. The science of recruitment...

how i met your mother GIF
 

Arf

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Hi, I’m a member of JOYOFSATAN and I’m training to become a US Navy SEAL.

Is it okay to openly be a Satanist in the SEAL pipeline? What’s the religious makeup of the SEAL Teams?
Religion shouldn’t be talked about period. Sure it will occasionally come up in one-on-one conversation, but if you are someone who is constantly bringing religion up, you are going to alienate the people around you.

If you want to talk religion, find a Chaplin. They are trained to provide spiritual help to any religion, even if they don’t personally follow it.

This might come as a surprise; but in Special Operations, I don't require you to agree with me about everything, nor do I even expect you to *tell* me everything about you. I can assure you- 90% of the people I work with (and more than that here on the board) have no clue what my ideological positions are, especially if they haven't asked me directly.

Bottom Line- if you don't make it an issue, it's not an issue.
I agree. People who speak openly about politics and religion will inevitably make someone with alternative views feel attacked in some way. The best thing to do is leave it out of your workplace entirely. There are some assholes who will offer their opinions unsolicited, and they tend to be viewed as assholes.


yes, you can get a contract; similar to what the Army does with 18X. You make it, you are good. You don't make it, to the fleet you go. The Navy also has a SOIDC contract, too, to go to boot-HM 'A' school-FMSS-pipeline.
When I joined up there was not an option to go Special Amphibious Reconnaissance Corpsman (SARC) in the Physical Screening Test (PST). At the time it was only SEAL, SWCC, EOD, Navy Diver(ND) and Helicopter Air Crew Rescue Swimmer. If I had the option to go SARC I may have done that over SWCC.

SARCs seem to be in an odd place command wise however, similar to the other non-SEAL/SWCC special programs.

The only rates that fall under Navy Special Warfare(NSW) are SEAL and SWCC. We don’t have any SARCs in the SEAL and Special Boat Teams.

EOD, Divers and Air Rescue fall under Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC). I don’t know any SARCs because they seem to be only with Recon and Raiders from my perspective, so I don’t know how they fit into the Navy hierarchy.

Within NSW our lives are much better than EOD or other NECC rates have it. We never have to move commands, and we don’t get assigned to ships. We have a strict training cycle and we know what our lives are going to look like to some degree during each phase of the cycle.

EOD, Divers and Air Rescue can be given to Special Operations Command (SOCOM), but are often dedicated to the conventional fleet. There is no permanent position either. As EOD, this year you can be assigned to Navy Special Warfare or other SOCOM units from other branches, and next year you can be sitting on a destroyer.



800 divisions (the divisions for Naval Special Warfare candidates) were removed from Navy boot camp and BUD/S Preparatory School moved to San Diego.

According to what the verified SEALs and Navy recruiters say on r/newtothenavy and r/navyseals subreddit, they go to Navy boot camp in Great Lakes then they go to BUD/S Prep in San Diego.
Stew Smith (former SEAL officer) recently said on his podcast that when people show up to BUD/S Prep, they have to take the SEAL PST and they can’t pass it because they got out of shape in boot camp so they get dropped from the pipeline. This is apparently happening to hundreds of people.
I can confirm that BUD/S prep is now in San Diego, but I was not aware of the loss of 800 divisions in boot camp until now.

I was in an 800 division in boot camp which was comprised of only SEAL and SWCC candidates. We had early morning “Dive Motivation” with SEAL and SWCC instructors before we started our day. Our day seemed to be more intense than the other non-800 divisions around us. However, when we graduated, every single one of us was in worse shape than when we started. This is why you need to be in much better shape than just hitting minimum scores.

A lot of my peers failed the entrance PST to enter BUD/S prep after boot camp even with the 800 division.

I don’t want to give the impression that boot camp was easy just because we left in worse shape than when we started. It’s physically damaging for a lot of other reasons. You are always sleep deprived, you are standing at attention constantly and your body seizes up because you are never stretching. Then when you do get “beat” you go from a rigid stiff position you had just been standing in for hours to physical training that is designed to decimate a few parts of your body so that it is a punishment. Then when you are done you go right back to standing at attention.

You are in steel toe boots 100 percent of the time, and they wreak havoc on your lower legs. In winter classes you PT in indoor gyms and you will rarely get any sunlight which makes you vitamin D deprived, further causing injury. Everyone is injured by the end.

You don’t have any good choices for nutrition, and you only have 5 minutes to eat usually. You are in tight living spaces with every one else, if one person gets sick the entire division gets sick. You will spend all of boot camp sick.

You can only shower for a brief moment once per day and usually you go to sleep extremely nasty. Despite the constant mopping you are always dirty because you spend a lot of time on the floor getting beat, or sitting on the floor listening to your recruit division commanders (RDC) because there are no chairs. The RDCs throw your blankets and pillows on the floor as often as they can. This, coupled with always being on the floor leads to everyone always having pink eye or norovirus (also known as the double dragon).

So at the end, you are in pretty bad shape. That’s why 800 divisions failed their entrance PSTs to prep, and why it will happen even more now that 800s are gone.

Interesting about how many people are failing the PST given us the whole reason they went to the special divisions to begin with. When I was at Great lakes a million years ago We didn't have special divisions, and we would get up at 0300 for extra PT and swimming, did not seem like a whole lot of people failed the PST.

It is very very very easy to get out of shape at boot camp, especially winter classes because you just don't PT that much.
We PT’d a lot, but it was by far not a healthy training routine. It was designed for suffering, not for strength and performance.


Hold on, this is madness.

The Navy took any form of SO prep out of recruit training and moved it to the NSW school house. Your workouts in recruit training aren’t close to what is needed to pass the indoc off the bus PT test at prep school.

So you fail out of the prep course because you weren’t prepared for the PREP course?

The Navy fires ship captains at the drop of a hat, but made that abortion an actual policy?

Hilarious.
They want most people to fail out. It’s a recruiting tool. It’s how the Navy gets physically fit (hopefully) ambitious sailors. And they wonder why the suicide rates are so high😂.


"...we disestablished the separate recruit rifle division at boot camp in December 2020. SEAL and SWCC recruit candidates are now fully integrated with the rest of their Navy shipmates in recruit training. This means SEAL and SWCC candidates solve their first problems in the Navy together with teammates from the greater Navy."

Frogmen Solve Hard Problems—From and on the Sea | Navy SEALs


This was necessary because SEAL/SWCC candidates who washed out generally had difficulty assimilating into the fleet because they had been treated as special from day one and felt above it all. The small percentage who didn't wash out generally had difficulty with SOF Truth #5 for the same reason.

USSOCOM
I have to say that I agree that 800s were treated like they were different than everyone else and held to a higher standard from day 1.

I am no high-ranking admiral, but I can tell you that going back to mixed divisions where you get ''Navy" PT ain't going to work, because it did not before. They need to find something else and keep working the problem till they get the product they're looking for.

So these recruits wash out at BUDS and they have trouble assimilating in the fleet because they felt they "we're above it all"? They thought they were better but they were quitters? They should be shot in the head for their stupidity.
It’s not a problem, they were getting a classes with too many people making it through BUD/S because people were too strong. They want lower numbers, and this is how they get it.


It's like Navy leadership felt left out in all the "who's dumber, Army or Marines?" conversations and decided they needed to go full retard.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't every other service that has a "street to SOF" type contract still have a prep course between basic and A/S?

I remember a bunch of the AFSOF pipeline guys mentioning that while I was in airborne, and IIRC there's a prep course prior to BRC for recon guys.

Why couldn't the Navy just do that?

It starts at Boot camp, then BUD/S prep, BUD/S Orientation (BO) and then the SEAL Candidates go to BUD/S first phase, and SWCC Candidates go to Basic Crewman Selection(BCT)

They still have BUD/S prep.


In the mid 2000s, they partitioned NSW and NSO (the Navy distinguishes SEAL/SWCC from other Navy special operations forces) candidates together into separate RTC (Recruit Training Command) divisions from conventional forces recruits. They did much more PT and their training was designed to rule out less capable candidates back into REGNAV jobs ahead of sending them to BUD/S, SWCC, AIRR, or ND training.

I ran into several of those drops (particularly BUD/S) in HM (hospital corpsman) school, because in the USN that's the closest thing to combat arms and SOF (aside from GM and certain support ratings positions) you will get to on the conventional side due to USMC reliance on them for medical care downrange.

I can understand why RTC may have wanted to shift the burden of producing NSW/NSO folks to recruiters or post-RTC training commands due to the number of drops, but part of me thinks the problem could have been solved by just requiring NSW/NSO candidates to volunteer for more generalized 'physically accelerated' boot camp divisions that also permitted non-NSW/NSO candidates to participate. Who knows how many NSW/NSO drops they could have 'saved' by offering successful conventional candidates the opportunity to pick up those dropped NSW/NSO contracts, similar to how promising Ranger candidates can be identified and recruited before reporting to their first command?
The term “NSO” is a recruiting tool. Once they make it out of boot camp they are never called that again. The special programs that are not SEAL or SWCC are a part of Navy Expeditionary Combat Command, and SOCOM may or may not use them at their discretion.

I agree that most drops want Corpsman or Gunner’s mate if medicine makes them squeamish. The SeaBees (Construction Battalion) also have a lot of desirable rates.


I do not know what the answer is to fix naval special warfare's attrition. It seems like every special program they have tried has not yielded a statistically significant difference in the attrition.

I'm a fan of special divisions at boot, and I do believe that the street-to-SEAL/whatever is necessary, and that there needs to be a better way to prepare people starting at boot who are there with that contract.

My problem is with the mental and psychological separation by telling people that they are special merely because they can swim and run faster, and by filling their heads with the notion that they are special. It goes to SOF culture and the idea of quiet professionals.

Upon thinking about it I am not sure that spending time in the fleet before going is going to yield a better product aside from a cultural knowledge of naval institutions and some maturity, but I think those things are certainly helpful.

They are not looking to fix the attrition. They want the attrition. They are making it harder on purpose to get more drops.


As I posted earlier, I don't know what the answer is to their recruitment and retention issues (but neither do they), but they are not going to bump their numbers by making every squid go to the fleet first; just like SF isn't going to make numbers by going 'old school' and requiring every SF candidate to be an E5.
For reasons unknown, people who received contracts from the fleet are statistically much much more likely to quit than those off the street. We talked about it a lot before and after selection, and what we saw confirmed this. I genuinely have no idea why. The fleet returnees usually have to get higher PST scores than people coming off the street for this reason, yet still they tend to not make it.
I see two factors playing into this:

1. The spotlight/Hollywood 'special' effect of SEALs (as compared to other SOF) on recruit expectations. In the 70s and 80s you had Rambo, Commando, A-Team, Delta Force, and a slew of other cinema that highlighted Army SOF. From the 90s on though, with the exception of Black Hawk Down, SEALs have mostly dominated the big budget SOF TV/film landscape, and definitely the gaming circuit. Due to this a larger percentage of SEAL Challenge candidates might be the types who are sold on the 'shiny special' status of the job as compared with, say, your Option 40 or 1T2X1 recruits.

2. The Navy, unlike the Army or Marine Corps, doesn't have the 'safety net' of conventional combat arms positions for unsuccessful SOF candidates to pivot towards after getting dropped. Most off-the-street SOF applicants probably aren't joining with the expectation of settling into something unrelated to SOF or combat arms, which adds to the stakes of failing for non-Army/Marine Corps candidates.

I'd be interested in hearing from @amlove21 or anyone else from the AFSPECWAR community on if there aren't similar issues with candidates despising the Air Force after washing out of selection.


They sure can't seem to get enough of their seamen.
SEAL recruiting IS Navy recruiting. The SEAL classes are huge when they first start. Most of them go straight to the regular Navy.

I agree with the safety net comment. Most people joining to be SEALs are dead set on being a shooter. When they have to be something else, it crushes them.
Is it bad if a female BUD/S student had sex with her teammates? Is it allowed?

I heard that a female SEAL candidate got caught performing oral sex on an EOD candidate in BUD/S prep, she was dropped from the pipeline.

If you are asking this because you are hoping that BUD/S is going to be an all you can eat buffet, I myself don’t want you in this community.

If you are asking for a friend, yes it is bad.

I’m glad that candidate got dropped.
 
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Devildoc

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@Arf , SARC (now SOIDC) contracts have been on and off again for decades. I don't know why "off" given how undermanned they are.

You are correct in that they are Marine Corps -centric given NSW went the "medic" route (and apparently, having issues). They still technically under "Big Navy", but "Big Navy" pretty much leaves all Marine Corps medical assets alone. You can spend 20 years with USMC and never with the Navy. Seabees, same (but different, of course). As an asset with USMC we could also be seconded to NSW as well.

When I was in boot, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth, there were no special divisions: all "special" contracts would assemble at 0300 for "special PT" with dive motivators.

As for them not wanting to fix attrition, there are two versions of the story, correct? The version where they're trying to recruit and recruit because of the attrition, and the story that they want the attrition. If that's what they want, they need to shut their pimping pie holes and be happy with undermand levels.
 

Arf

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@Arf , SARC (now SOIDC) contracts have been on and off again for decades. I don't know why "off" given how undermanned they are.

You are correct in that they are Marine Corps -centric given NSW went the "medic" route (and apparently, having issues). They still technically under "Big Navy", but "Big Navy" pretty much leaves all Marine Corps medical assets alone. You can spend 20 years with USMC and never with the Navy. Seabees, same (but different, of course). As an asset with USMC we could also be seconded to NSW as well.

When I was in boot, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth, there were no special divisions: all "special" contracts would assemble at 0300 for "special PT" with dive motivators.

As for them not wanting to fix attrition, there are two versions of the story, correct? The version where they're trying to recruit and recruit because of the attrition, and the story that they want the attrition. If that's what they want, they need to shut their pimping pie holes and be happy with undermand levels.

Again, if that were an option for me I may have chosen SOIDC instead of SWCC.

I think the “complaining” they are doing about needing manning is a part of the machine. They pride themselves on the attrition. When too many people start making it, it makes them look bad. If people think that now is a good time to join up because of “undermanning” then it only adds to the appeal. That appeal leads to fresh new recruits who dropped out of BUD/S who can fill other conventional Navy billets.
 

Devildoc

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Again, if that were an option for me I may have chosen SOIDC instead of SWCC.

I think the “complaining” they are doing about needing manning is a part of the machine. They pride themselves on the attrition. When too many people start making it, it makes them look bad. If people think that now is a good time to join up because of “undermanning” then it only adds to the appeal. That appeal leads to fresh new recruits who dropped out of BUD/S who can fill other conventional Navy billets.

You know what I got before boot? A SARC contract. You you know what I did not get before boot? A dive physical. Only after I joined and got a dive physical did I know that I was color blind and not eligible. I could have made waves and got out of the contract, but I decided to change tack. I loved my career and what I did (aside from the typical military/Navy bullshit), at the end of the day the Navy is interested only and the Navy, not the sailor. You are an asset and only an asset, as long as you are capable.
 

Arf

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You know what I got before boot? A SARC contract. You you know what I did not get before boot? A dive physical. Only after I joined and got a dive physical did I know that I was color blind and not eligible. I could have made waves and got out of the contract, but I decided to change tack. I loved my career and what I did (aside from the typical military/Navy bullshit), at the end of the day the Navy is interested only and the Navy, not the sailor. You are an asset and only an asset, as long as you are capable.
This could not be more true. I’ve experienced this myself. The hardest thing about being in the military is the lack of control you have over your own future. You can hope for the best, but it’s rare for everything to go exactly how you hope it will. Even within the Special Operations Forces communities.
 

Inanna

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I can confirm that BUD/S prep is now in San Diego, but I was not aware of the loss of 800 divisions in boot camp until now.

I was in an 800 division in boot camp which was comprised of only SEAL and SWCC candidates. We had early morning “Dive Motivation” with SEAL and SWCC instructors before we started our day. Our day seemed to be more intense than the other non-800 divisions around us. However, when we graduated, every single one of us was in worse shape than when we started. This is why you need to be in much better shape than just hitting minimum scores.

A lot of my peers failed the entrance PST to enter BUD/S prep after boot camp even with the 800 division.
Is the information below accurate??

“In BUD/S, there’s a new point system in Basic Orientation (BO) which is the first three weeks of BUD/S. The point system is where you compete with the rest of your BO class to enter first phase based off of your times on the 4 mile run, 2 mile ocean swim and the O-Course. This system was created because only a limited number of SEAL candidates can enter first phase and the pipeline is overmanned, there’s been BO classes with 300+ candidates.

Third phase times for the O course, swims and runs are 3 points, second phase are 2 points and first phase is 1 point. Overall, 7 points is solid, 8 is usually good enough and 9 is the best possible score. Some SEAL candidates weren’t allowed to “class up” (officially enter First Phase in a BUD/S class) even though they had 7 or 8 points so you should aim for 9.

Remember, you will not be allowed to graduate BUD/S if you can’t pass the third phase times in third phase.

1 point = 1st phase time
2 points = 2nd phase time
3 points = 3rd phase time

1st phase standards:
4 mile run in 32:00 minutes
O-Course in 13:00 minutes
2 mile ocean swim in fins in 85:00 minutes

2nd phase standards:
4 mile run in 31:00 minutes
O-Course in 11:00 / 10:30 minutes
2 mile ocean swim in fins in 80 minutes

3rd phase standards:
4 mile run in 30 minutes
O-Course in 10 minutes
2 mile ocean swim in fins in 75:00 minutes

According to Stew Smith and SEALSWCC.com, these are the scores you should aim for and be able to pass long before you ship off to BUD/S:

4 mile run in 27 minutes on sand in Nike SFB Gen 2 boots (in black and non-Goretex)
O-Course in under 10 minutes
2 mile ocean swim in Scuba Pro Jet fins in 70 minutes using the combat side stroke”
 

Arf

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Is the information below accurate??
That is about what I remember when I went through. You can’t practice the O-Course until you finish boot camp and get to San Diego. I recommend doing lots of zercher squats and zercher lunges, and also just carrying heavy sand bags in the zercher position. Both to toughen your arms up from the abuse they will take and because you spend a ton of time in the chest carry position. I also recommend training your grip A LOT. The O-Course is the hardest on your hands. People fall off the high objects due to lack of grip strength. If your hands can’t handle it the rest of your body doesn’t matter.
You should be bear crawling a lot and doing hundreds of burpees as well.
 

amlove21

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snip

I'd be interested in hearing from @amlove21 or anyone else from the AFSPECWAR community on if there aren't similar issues with candidates despising the Air Force after washing out of selection.
Well, admittedly, I am pretty much a "them" now; so, being an old PJ pretty out of touch with that specific population (now-crosstraineed young Airmen that weren't selected) probably opens up a blind spot. Very few people that failed selection engage me on the topic; the ones that do are often looking at going back in so their true feelings on the AF probably aren't made clear to me.

As for the rest of this thread... lol. I love chaos. This thread is a perfect mix of stupid questions and passive aggressive nonsesne.

Continue.
 
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