Navy SEALs Vs SAS Commandos – Differences and Similarities

Each country has its own brand of specialized military units and Special Forces that are trained to combat in highly volatile battle conditions or perform clandestine operations to change the course of a battle.

Most of these Special Forces teams operate in small groups and their activities include counter-terrorism operations, guerrilla warfare and the likes. Herein we have tried to give you the differences and similarities between two of the world's elite forces namely the U.S Navy SEALs and the British SAS commandos.

The Similarities

Covert Operations

Both the units, more often, than not, are used to conduct clandestine operations in enemy territory. They are used for the following purposes:

Gathering of Intelligence deep within enemy territory or in the thick of the battle

Counter Terrorism operations outside the home country

Sabotage and Offensive Raiding

The Selection

The Selection procedure of both the US Navy SEALs and the SAS commandos is reputed to be the hardest in the world, with a very limited amount of pass percentage. The training course is highly demanding and most trainees are not able to last through the duration of the whole process.

The Differences

The Origins

Though both can trace their origins to the Second World War and the year 1941, it was not until the year 1961 that Navy SEALs in their present form, where given operational authorization. However, the SAS commandos regiment was authorized in the year 1941. Therefore taking a purely academic viewpoint we can say that the SAS is an older organization as compared to the US Navy SEALs

Command and Structure

There are eight confirmed Navy SEALs team, as gauged from various data, and each team has 40-man task units. Typically the size of a Navy SEALs team, inclusive of their support staff is around 300 personnel. Moreover, they are a part of the United States Navy, though they can operate on all terrains.

The Special Air Services (SAS) Commandos are a part of the British Army and the Group is controlled by the Director Special Forces. It is made up of three battalion sized units and each SAS regiment is comprised of a number of 'Saber Squadrons'. Each such squadron is further divided into 4 troops comprising of 16 members.

End Note

Though we have listed just two difference and similarities, rest assured there are many more distinguishing as well as common features between the two. There are simply too many to list down, however, the ones given are the aspects that stand out.

Whatever may be their similarities and differences, both the forces have done their country proud and have a long list of commendable and courageous achievements behind them.


Source by James Kara Murat

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