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Subject: Who has the more tougher Training: US Navy SEALS or British SAS?
ChaosEnforcer    2/1/2005 3:27:55 AM
Whenever I read upon the US Navy SEALS, it says that US Navy Seals go through the toughest training in the world. When I read about the SAS, it said they go through the toughest training in the world. So which is tougher? Navy SEALs or British SAS. I know that Navy SEALS train for Sea, Air and Land Operations whereas British SAS are an Special Air Service which means more dedication towards Air. So what do you guys think? USA Navy SEALS or British SAS. Who has the more tougher training?
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gf0012-aust    Who has the more tougher Training: US Navy SEALS or British SAS? - Agammenon    2/4/2005 8:22:25 AM
I think you'll find that the newspapers who promoted that have been discredited. They were trying to to create a spin. For a detailed account of their attempt, you can refer to "Ultimate Risk" by Mark McNicol. It's written about the SAS Op against Al Quaeda in Afghanistan. ISBN 1-4050-3432-7. He is ex 22 SAS (16 years). His (and the Regiments) view is that the Al Quaeda Op in Afghanistan was not considered internally as worthy of a VC to any participants due to: 1) Spin, 2) Not being exceptional and worthy of a gong. It gives a very good account of Op Trent - and knocks over a few of the urban myths.
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Worcester    RE:Who has the more tougher Training: US Navy SEALS or British SAS? - gf -aust   2/4/2005 2:52:00 PM
Different eligibility for a MoH and a VC. Both first awarded in almost the same time (1854-56) we have awarded 3,400+ MoH while the whole British Empire/Commonwealth have only had some 1,354 VCs. The Brits should have awarded more looking at numbers and years of service in WW1 from 1914-17 and WW2 from 1940-41 but the definition is almost impossibly high. Based on the balance between live and posthumous recipients, the statitical odds of surviving a MoH incident is 18% (5 of 6 died) and a VC incident are less than 10% (9 of 10 died); i.e VC has half the survival rate. It was described to me by a Brit officer as "the army's way of saying 'we dont know why you're alive, you should be dead' ". He was also explaining about the small block of bronze from which VCs are carved - made from the Russian cannon captured by the Charge of the Light Brigade; it sounded like there was almost a religious awe about the VC. The Medal of Honor requires: "Conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty." The Victoria Cross requires: "The MOST conspicuous bravery, or some daring or pre-eminent act of valor or SELF SACRIFICE, or EXTREME devotion to duty in the presence of the enemy." My CAPITALS emphasis, but the benchmark seems to almost require death! Not just gallantry during active operations. Which explains why the Brits in 1993 instituted the "Conspicuous Gallantry Cross" just below the Victoria Cross so that you could get something for conspicuous gallantry without absolutely having to be 90% suicidal! The Conspicuous Gallantry Cross (1993): "In recognition of acts of conspicuous gallantry during active operations against the enemy." The CGC is designed to be issued more often for the "conspicuous gallantry" standard rather than "the MOST conspicuous bravery/ extreme devotion / self sacrifice" standard. Our Medal of Honor spans the whole range from "conspicuous gallantry" up to "extreme devotion and self sacrifice".
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PeregrinePike    RE:TDHM question to Sam   2/4/2005 3:44:11 PM
I remember reading about a Mexican-American who won MOH for action in Vietnam when he was still a Mexican, but actually recieved it in ~1993 after being granted citizenship by a special Senate bill. What about that?
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gf0012-aust    RE:Who has the more tougher Training: US Navy SEALS or British SAS? - gf -aust - Worcester   2/4/2005 4:20:13 PM
I didn't add that a Conspic Gall Cross was awarded vice a VC - as the action was not deemed worthy of a VC. Apparently this was determined by within SAS. Like all things re SAS and "gongs" there is probably more to the story than prev stated, but the drivel promoted by the "UK Dailies" is just errant nonsense. Too much Andy McNab syndrome unfortunately.
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Sam    RE:TDHM question to Sam   2/4/2005 7:37:03 PM
You do have part of the story right. At the time of the deed Alfred Rascon was indeed a mexican national. But he became acitizen the next year 1967, Not in the 90s by special act of Congress. He was awarded a silver star for the action. His platoon, ie the people he saved,requested that the medal be upgraded and in 2000 it was. At the time he was the Inspector General of the Selective Service Administration.
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Sam    RE:MOH numbers Worcester   2/4/2005 7:50:00 PM
Those numbers are correct but relise that during the civil war the MOH was the only decoration. If you look at MOH awarded from WW1 forward (when we started awarding other medals) there have only been 970. Which is more in line with the VC. Many of the 1520 awarded during the Civil war have been resended as have the 193 awarded for non combat service. I'm not sure if they took medals away from the 2 time awardees that were awarded both the Army and Navy MOH for the same incident.
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Worcester    RE:MOH numbers Sam   2/4/2005 9:43:59 PM
"During civil war, MoH was the only decoration" Yes and the VC was the only decoration for conspicuous gallantry/extreme bravery in the Crimean War, Zulu War, First and Second Afghan Wars, the Boer War and for the First World War until 1915 when the Military Cross was started. For lower awards the Brits would be "Mentioned in Despatches" (you get your name in the official combat record) which means you wear a brass "oak leaf" on the campaign ribbon. Or they could give a Distinguished Service Order which was intended for officers leading successful operations and usually (still today) reserved for batallion commanders (lt/col or majors.) I agree that 970 MoH since 1914 APPEARS to be more in line with the VC 832 over the same period. But note that 634 VC (76%) were awarded 1914-19 and across a wider number of troops; proportionately that is 159 VC per year over the 4 years 1914-18; if we subtract the proportionate comparison is 157 VC since 1917 vs 970 MoH. Do you know how many MoH were awarded in 1918? Oddly only 182 VC were awarded in 1939-45. WW1 was horrific! I guess we had quite a few in Vietnam too. I will check the numbers and get back, but I'm pretty certain the apparent equivalence will be 1914-17.
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Worcester    RE:MOH numbers Sam - correction   2/4/2005 9:52:50 PM
that should read, "if we subtract the proportionality of VCs awarded for actions during 1914-17, then the ratio from 1918 to today is VC 357: MoH 970" Excuse my earlier math!
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DropBear    RE:Worcester - VC    2/4/2005 10:22:50 PM
"He was also explaining about the small block of bronze from which VCs are carved - made from the Russian cannon captured by the Charge of the Light Brigade; it sounded like there was almost a religious awe about the VC." I was under the impression that VC's were made out of the metal derived from a captured WW1 German Sturmpanzerwagen, similar to the A7V model (although that particular model was introduced later in 1918). Can you verify the Russian cannon claim, so I can check it out?? Regards, DB.
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gf0012-aust    Drop - VC    2/4/2005 11:47:01 PM
Drop, it is made out of one of the Cannons siezed during Crimea. It was instituted in January 1856. FYI "The Victoria Cross is the British realm's highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy. It has precedence over any other of our Sovereign's awards or Commonwealth decorations. The Victoria Cross was founded by Royal Warrant January 29, 1856 to recognize the bravery of those who were then fighting the Crimean War. It was available to all soldiers and "neither rank, nor long service, nor wounds, nor any other circumstance or condition whatsoever, save the merit of conspicuous bravery" could make one eligible - truly a democratic award. The Cross itself is cast from the bronze of cannons captured at Sevastopol during the Crimean War. The design, chosen by Queen Victoria, consists of a cross patee ensigned with the Royal Crest resting upon a scroll bearing the words "For Valour." The reverse of the suspender bar is engraved with the recipients' name, rank and unit while the reverse of the cross is engraved with the date of the deed for which the recipient was honoured. Since its inception the Victoria Cross has been awarded 1,350 times. The youngest recipient was 15 years old and the eldest was 69 years old. Three cases exist where both father and son have won the Victoria Cross; four pairs of brothers have also been recipients. Four Victoria Crosses have been awarded to civilians and while no woman has been awarded the Victoria Cross a gold representation of the decoration was awarded to Mrs. Webber Harris for her efforts in nursing cholera victims. Three men have been awarded the Victoria Cross twice. "
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