“Captures the essence of Naval Special Warfare from our storied beginnings to the current fight.” —Admiral WILLIAM H. McRAVEN
Written with the unprecedented cooperation of the Naval Special Warfare community, this vivid and definitive history of the U.S. Navy SEALs reveals the inside story behind the greatest combat operations of America's most celebrated warriors. Illustrated with forty pages of photographs and based on exclusive interviews with more than 100 U.S. frogmen (including multiple Medal of Honor recipients), here is "the first comprehensive history of the special operations force" (Military.com).
New York Times bestselling authors Dick Couch—a former SEAL—and William Doyle chart the SEALs' story, from their origins in the daring Naval Combat Demolition Teams, Underwater Demolition Teams, Scouts and Raiders commando units, and OSS Operational Swimmers of World War II to their coming of age in Vietnam and rise to glory in Iraq and Afghanistan after 9/11.
Despite the title, much of what former SEAL Couch (Sheriff of Ramadi) and historian Doyle (American Gun, with Chris Kyle) cover has been shared elsewhere, but they fill a niche among the voluminous, recent accounts of Navy SEAL operations by linking the pre-9/11 history of the SEALs to the extensive combat operations conducted since. The authors claim that this is the only history of the SEALs that covers the entire period of the SEALs' existence, and they tell the story through a series of vignettes selected to capture the essence of the SEAL combat experience. Beginning with the SEALs' WWII predecessors, the Navy Underwater Demolitions Teams, Couch and Doyle present personal experiences of individual SEAL unit veterans, often through interviews with the authors. The authors also highlight historical aspects of SEAL operations and training that continue to be important today, such as explaining the origin of the relationship between SEALS and the CIA. Though serious students of special operations warfare will find little new material here, it is an entertaining and informative read for a general audience.