As you probably know it depends on which regiment that you join..
There are now many private companys doing alternative courses especially in prague etc...
that is if youre looking for alternative cpo employment.
current pay is $500 to $750 per day.. in fallujah
I am not trying to speak for Tomahawk, but my experience in SERE, also called Code of Conduct, was favorable. Like many courses and schools, you get out of it what you put in. The course I completed was under the command of a former POW who spent 5 years in the Hanoi Hilton. It was almost all that I expected. I learned a lot from the course, but I think the biggest part of what I brought way was that I have now been âtrainedâ to handle the situation. In many interviews with US Marines who have been POWâs , they stated that one of the reasons that they lasted as long as they did was that they felt they had been through the toughest boot camp and that they could handle anything. (No need to start an argument here about whoâs RT is tougher than whoâs)
What I am trying to get at is, if you have been trained about a situation, and how to possibly handle that situation, most people will do better during it.
During Vietnam, it took the POWs up to 3 years to start a communications network. During the GW, it took less than 48 hours for 2 Marine pilots to start communicating with each other.
So, to answer your questions:
1.What did you think of it? God to go and well worth the blood I was spitting up at itâs end.
2.Was it what you expected? Yes
3.Do you feel it was relevant? Yes, but this would also depend on what your job in the military is.
4.Any criticisms? The survival stage should have had a bit more on all areas of operations. Desert, Jungle, woodland, snow, etc. They covered it all but not as much as I think they should have. At the same time, many of the students there had already completed a specific survival course and were already familiar with additional methods of survival.
Am I correct in saying that during the Korean War, the most POW's who were successfully indoctrinated by the North were pro-rata American in the majority and to a much lesser degree Brit/Commonwealth troops. Think this was put down partly to the Yanks coming from a more affluent life style at the time whilst the Brits were just coming out of WWII rationing and his natural propensity for bloody mindedness when his backs against the wall. The Turks did not have a single man turned [They were used to being fed on shiite and being treated abominably by their own officers]. As for the Brazilians, I don't know if any were captured.
True, most POW's who were successfully indoctrinated by the North were pro-rata American in the majority and to a much lesser degree Brit/Commonwealth troops. At the same time, there are other numbers that should be looked at. What is the % of US troops vs the UN in Korea? Then what were the total number of POW's and out of the number of Americans taken how what % turned? Of the % how many were US reserve units and regular Army, Not Ranger, Marines, etc.
The SERE School I went to, was in 1984. It was ran by the Canadian Army. We went to British Columbia, which has some beautiful, but very brutal landscapes.
The course, itself, was 4 weeks in length. The last week was the "capture and interrogate" time. It was brutal, to say the least, however, the problem with it is: If you have half a brain, you realize they aint going to beat the shit out of you. They slapped us around, did all the normal junk (stress positions, sleep deprivation, white lights, loud noise, burlap bags on the head with water poured on it, etc), however, you KNEW in 72 hours or so, you would be done.
So, you just mustered up, gave your name, rank, serial number, and shut the **** up. I think anyone with any sense of honor, etc can get through 3-4 days of that shit.
The problem arises, when your really captured and you have no clue when/if you will ever be released. That would be a MAJOR mind **** and I could see breaking after months and months of beatings, etc. In fact, so much so, before the Vietnam War, the US Code of Ethics said you "will not talk," or words to such affect. After Vietnam, it was changed to "hold out as long as possible."
I guess my point is: SERE School has its good points. It does give you an IDEA of what to expect. However, with most training, it can't reproduce the exact mental/physical challenges you would face in a real life capture. However, I was glad I went through it.