Special Forces Command (Turkey)
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|Special Forces Command|
Combat Search and Rescue
|Motto(s)||One Dies, Thousand Rises|
|March||İstiklâl Marşı (Independence March)|
|Lieutenant General Zekai Aksakallı|
The Special Forces Command (Turkish: Özel Kuvvetler Komutanlığı), nicknamed Maroon Berets (Turkish: Bordo Bereliler) because of their distinctive service headgear, are a special operations unit of the Turkish Armed Forces made up of volunteers from any branch of Turkish Armed Forces officers after graduating a roughly 4-year training period. The Special Forces is not aligned to any of the three Turkish branches of TAF, receiving its orders directly from the General Staff of the Republic of Turkey. Its forerunner was the Special Warfare Department (Turkish: Özel Harp Dairesi)
Although the Special Forces is considered a division-level formation, this includes non-combatant units and administrative duties personnel as well.
Volunteers initially face a pass/fail written exam as well as physical and psychological tests. Those who pass the exams become special forces candidates. Adequate linguistic skills in at least one foreign language is a plus for admission. The candidates then have to complete a challenging training period which lasts around 120–260 weeks. Many drop out during this intense training period. Training encompasses: fitness; obstacle courses; a range of martial arts; high-altitude mountain warfare school; close quarters combat (CQC); biological/chemical/nuclear warfare; parachuting; diving; sniping; demolition; counter-terrorism; search and rescue; stealth search and destroy; reconnaissance; and survival. Learning foreign languages is a part of the training. During the training, candidates are pushed by their instructors to their limits, both physically and mentally. The training schedule includes all aspects of a modern-day regular and psychological warfare. 100 km (62 mi) terrain-walking with a 40 kg (88 lb). load is an example of what the candidates have to go through during training.
Trust Shot training program
The Trust Shot (in Turkish "Güven Atışı") is a part of the MB's training program. It is exercised on the last month of the training and is to ensure that the soldiers can trust each other with their lives. The Trust Shot consists of two members of a squad standing next to paper target boards, while another member fires on the targets with a handgun while walking towards them from 15 m (49 ft) away. During the exercise the men standing next to the targets are not allowed to move or wear body armor. They are one of the few special operations teams in the world to perform the trust shot.
Special Aviation Group
|Pistols||HK USP, SIG P226, SIG P229, Sarsilmaz Kilinc 2000 Mega, Sarsilmaz Kilinc 2000 Light|
|Assault Rifles||M4A1, Heckler & Koch HK416, MKEK MPT-76, AKM, IMI Tavor TAR-21|
|Sniper Rifles||KNT-308, Sako TRG, CheyTac Intervention, Dragunov sniper rifle, Barrett M82, Accuracy International Arctic Warfare, MKEK JNG-90, M110|
- Uslu, Emrullah (July 10, 2008). "Tackling the PKK: New Directions for Turkey's Special Forces". TerrorismMonitor. Jamestown Foundation. VI (14): 9–11.
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- Lale Sariibrahimoglu, 'Live-fire exercises shine spotlight on Turkey's special forces,' Jane's Defence Weekly, 7 January 2004