Damn Few: Making the Modern SEAL Warrior

Damn Few: Making the Modern SEAL Warrior

Ellis Henican, Rorke Denver

Language: English

Pages: 182

ISBN: 1401324797

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Rorke Denver trains the men who become Navy SEALs—the most creative problem solvers on the modern battlefield, ideal warriors for the kinds of wars America is fighting now. With his years of action-packed mission experience and a top training role, Lieutenant Commander Denver understands exactly how tomorrow's soldiers are recruited, sculpted, motivated, and deployed.

Now, Denver takes you inside his personal story and the fascinating, demanding SEAL training program he now oversees. He recounts his experience evolving from a young SEAL hopeful pushing his way through Hell Week, into a warrior engaging in dangerous stealth missions across the globe, and finally into a lieutenant commander directing the indoctrination, requalification programs, and the "Hero or Zero" missions his SEALs undertake.

From his own SEAL training and missions overseas, Denver details how the SEALs' creative operations became front and center in America's War on Terror—and how they are altering warfare everywhere. In fourteen years as a SEAL officer, Rorke Denver tangled with drug lords in Latin America, stood up to violent mobs in Liberia, and battled terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. Leading 200 commando missions, he earned the Bronze Star with V for valor. He has also served as flag aide to the admiral in charge and spent the past four years as executive officer of the Navy Special Warfare Center's Advanced Training Command in Coronado, California, directing all phases of the basic and advanced training that prepare men for war in SEAL teams. He recently starred in the film Act of Valor. He is married and has two daughters.

Ellis Henican is a columnist at Newsday and an on-air commentator at the Fox News Channel. He has written two recent New York Times bestsellers, Home Team with New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton and In the Blink of an Eye with NASCAR legend Michael Waltrip.

With all the SEALs' recent successes, we have been getting a level of acclaim we're not used to. But something important has been missing in this warm burst of publicity... Correcting that is my mission here.

My own SEAL dream was launched by a book. My hope is that this one teaches lessons that go far beyond the battlefield, inspiring a fresh generation of warriors to carry on that dream.

—Lieutenant Commander Rorke Denver

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to be. I was with a group of guys I could easily see again on a battlefield, guys who were on their way to being SEALs. Our BUD/S class was becoming a brotherhood. Beyond the powerful bonding and the intense competitive drive, the real salvation of Hell Week was the calendar. No matter how exhausting the superhuman demands, Friday eventually came for my class. Late that morning, the instructors told us to paddle up to the water line in front of the BUD/S compound. At that spot there were huge

regimes that can help you get fit. I’m a believer in an open-source program called CrossFit, which is beloved by firefighters, police officers, and quite a few special-forces guys. But in recent years, a whole industry has grown up—books, tapes, websites, and personal-trainer programs, a few of them designed by ex-SEALs. They promise to guide their students toward SEAL-level fitness, whether the user is hoping to join up or to just look like they could. Some of these resources are good, some not.

of two brilliant Catholic saints, Thomas Aquinas and Augustine. They wrestled thoughtfully with serious questions about when war is morally appropriate. “War is justified only by the injustice of an aggressor,” Augustine wrote, “and that injustice ought to be a source of grief to any good man, because it is human injustice.” “In order for a war to be just, three things are necessary,” countered Aquinas. “First, the authority of the sovereign. Secondly, a just cause. Thirdly, a rightful

lifting them, filling them with sand, dumping the sand out, and running down the beach with those damn, 110-pound inflatable boats balanced on our heads. Some guys complained they were getting bald spots from the constant rubbing of sandy boat bottoms on their heads. My boat crew—Matt, Trey, Coop, Mike, and Carlo, plus some rotating others—were absolute animals, studs all. Since Matt and Trey were officers like me, we had three boat crew members who were always ready to lead. That was a solid

President Obama has been just as staunch a supporter of special ops, especially the SEALs. Those around the president say his confidence was built by the Somali-pirate mission and then sealed by the bin Laden raid. “So much of what you do will never be known by the citizens we serve,” Hillary Clinton, Obama’s secretary of state, told an International Special Operations Forces Week conference in Tampa in 2012. “But I know what you do and so do others, who marvel and appreciate what it means for

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