Most people don’t know that Special Forces, or SEAL teams are more often than not accompanied by an Air Force Combat Controller when they are operating out in bad guy territory. These Air Force Combat Controllers fit right in, indeed, they are essential to the success of those operations.
It is a fact that those Special Force or Navy Seal teams operate in some of the world’s most dangerous environments and do so with stealth, speed, efficiency of purpose.
Air Force Combat Controllers are an essential and important asset to these teams. They go where they go, they jump from planes, come ashore from the sea, and shoot as well as any of their fellow team members. But they bring a skill that is even more necessary.
They are trained to see and to analyze the battlefield environment, to bring in air and artillery assets to enhance their mission or to help fight and to defeat the enemy.
These warriors are the main connection to all the air support platforms. They are there on the ground, seeing the battlefield environment in all of its complexity. They are able to assess, in the immediacy of the moment, which of the aerial support assets are most appropriate to the team’s immediate needs and are able to direct those assets, communicating directly with the pilots, giving all the details as to which weapons are most appropriate to the situation and where to apply those assets for the greatest effects. But they are also as combat ready and able as their Navy Seal and Army Special Forces team members.
This video will give you a sense of the training these men go through and the kinds of skills they come to possess. They must have stamina, speed, and a never quite attitude just to get into the Air Force Combat Controller school. Many may want to be a Combat Controller, but only a few, only the best make it.
These Air Force Combat Controllers have proven their courage, their skills, and their value on countless occasions over the last 17 years in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as other locations around the world. Many have been awarded some of the nation’s highest medals for valor.
The Veterans Site sends its respect and thanks to all who have served and to all who are currently serving as Air Force Combat Controllers. Your skills and commitment to duty is second to none. Fly, Fight, Win!
Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site Blog.