Talk:Special forces

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Semi-protected edit request on 16 November 2014[edit]

119.154.27.195 (talk) 07:24, 16 November 2014 (UTC) SSG Pakistan is 9th best special force in the world so add it in this topic

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: This article doesn't rank special forces. Stickee (talk) 08:49, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

History - First specialized units[edit]

Asking a registered used to add this following text into the beginning, as it predates the Corps of Guides roughly about 200 years.


During the Great Northern War (1700-1721) a Finnish non-commissioned officer Tapani (Stefan) Löfving, originally working as an army desk clerk, would be sent on reconnaissance missions to gather intelligence on Russian troops and their whereabouts. Being fluent in Finnish, Swedish, German and Russian, he was able to easily penetrate the enemy's ranks using his linguistic and desk clerk skills. He would often lead a squad of three to five men, their task being mainly reconnaissance and sabotage, but also espionage and direct action. Some of his missions are well documented, as he had to send in reports. During one of these missions he was ordered to stay behind the retreating Finnish troops and was given a task to destroy a bridge, to slow down the advancing enemy. Resulting in a firefight at the bridge, he managed to escape losing only his earlobe. Continuing to build up his reputation on both sides, he quickly became a wanted man. Russians would place a bounty on his head, along with many sabotage missions being answered in the near-by villages. After the war he would continue to sabotage Russian supplies, as direct action was no longer an option. In Finland these type of army troops are traditionally known as Sissi, equivalent of the original American Green Berets. One of the original Green Berets, Major Larry Thorne, had received Sissi training in Finland.


The sources are found in the Finnish and Swedish articles about Tapani (Stefan) Löfving, in the English articles about Larry Thorne, 10th SFG(A) history section, and Sissi (Finnish light infantry). As of now your article has a history section claiming that the first specialized units were British and founded 200 years after the well documented Sissi troops. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 178.75.164.75 (talk) 17:51, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 21 January 2015[edit]

The history section "First specialized units" should begin with the well documented Sissi-troops used in the Great Northern War (1700-1721) that predate the British units nearly 200 years. There is an English wikipedia article Sissi(Finnish light infantry) with a history section with sources. Either taking parts from there or look into the text on the talk page, subject History - First specialized units. As of now there is no mention of it. Tapani Löfving doesn't have an English article yet, but the Finnish and Swedish wiki articles have sources confirming that he led specialized units conducting reconnassaince, espionage, sabotage and direct action, as a non-commissioned officer between 1700-1721. The article also states that these type of troops were seemingly common and that the modern Sissi regiment traces their origins all the way back to the Great Northern War. The original American Green Berets recruited Larry Thorne who led Sissi squads in WW2 who taught them Sissi tactics in return for airborne skills, furthermore he worked as a special forces advisor in Vietnam so there's a connection to the modern special forces right there. The Sissi regiment can be considered as the equivalent to the 10th SFG Green Berets and the earliest documented Sissi-troops date back to the late 1600s. Source: Original diaries from 1720 are on display in Porvoo, Finland. They have been published online. http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/22361/pg22361.html

http://yle.fi/uutiset/tapani_lofvingin_syntymasta_320_vuotta_suomennetut_paivakirjat_luettavissa_internetissa/5884001

You could also add a link to http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sissi_%28Finnish_light_infantry%29 that further explains the meaning and history of Sissi-troops. 178.75.164.75 (talk) 19:00, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. Mlpearc (open channel) 19:34, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

Now reliable sources have been provided.

Britain --> United Kingdom[edit]

Please rename the section 'Britain' to 'United Kingdom'. The SAS and other special forces were not confined to the island of Great Britain. Indeed, one if the founding soldiers was Blair Mayne, who wasn't from the island of GB, but was from the UK nevertheless. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 98.122.72.204 (talk) 17:57, 12 March 2015 (UTC)

U.S. Special Forces refers ONLY to U.S. Army Green Berets.[edit]

U.S. Special forces (SF) should not be confused with Special Operations Forces (SOF - the generic name for all U.S. forces with a special operations mission). All other Units / Organizations (other than Special Forces), with a special operation's mission, have their own title and fall under their service command - such as Navy Seals who fall under Naval Special Operations Command (NAVSOC) or U.S. Army Rangers who fall under Army Special Operations Command (ARSOC). Special Forces also falls under ARSOC. In addition, ALL service commands from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines fall under U.S. Special Operations Command. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 110.171.250.46 (talk) 05:48, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

"Special forces" is now a generic term used internationally Nick-D (talk) 05:58, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
Well not quite. 'Special forces' is the UK/Commonwealth term for a type of force they pioneered in the Second World War with the SAS and LRDG. The U.S. Army Special Forces came along quite a lot later. After the creation of the Green Berets, interest in SF grew in the United States, and Charlie Beckwith copied the SAS to create Delta. After that the propensity of the U.S. armed forces to give overcomplicated names to things created 'special operations forces', though it might have been also to avoid confusion with 'special weapons'. So SF has a completely different historical pedigree. Buckshot06 (talk) 07:56, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
This is a bit like the earlier inane argument about what is considered "filmjölk" there was. The concept of special forces is old and has been independently reinvented many times. The question here seems to be what is merely called special forces within any particular system. For instance Finnish Army had the kaukopartio (remote patrol) concept developed in the Winter War, independently and contemporarily with the British, within the sissi troops framework. In fact Finland and the UK were at war with each other, which kind of precludes an organizational connection. If you go to the beginnings of sissi troops that's in the 1500s. --vuo (talk) 08:38, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

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