The Best Special Forces From Around The World

Published on 12/17/2018
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Not all handsome men and beautiful women we often see in Hollywood are who they seem to be. They are actually part of a special unit who are ready to ward off threats. It may sound exciting to know they have that kind of job but not nearly as exciting as the actual encounters of Special Forces teams. Let us take a look at the different special forces units and see where they place in the rank of terrifying to the most ferocious units all over the world. Prepare to be in awe with how these super soldiers do their job.

British SAS

During World War II in 1941, the British Special Air Service was born. It was formed during the most important event of our world history and now it is highly regarded because of its important role in combatting terrorism. Joining the team means one has to be tough and ready to face dangerous situations that may warrant a good insurance coverage.

British SAS

British SAS

Israeli Shayetet 13

The Shayetet 13 special unit is from the Israeli Navy. This unit that is very useful to Israel Defense Force is actually very private and it would be difficult to get information about them. They are known to be really good in Krav Maga and has mastered it during their 4-year contract. These people are probably covered with really high insurance coverage considering the risks they live with.

Israeli Shayetet 13

Israeli Shayetet 13

Pakistan Special Service Group

Within the Pakistan Army is an elite fighting force made up of 8 different battalions. It was formed back in 1956 and their training is largely based from the US Special Forces training. The Pakistan Special Service Group is based in Tarbela Contonment and their primary focus is fighting the Islamic State and the AL Qaeda.

Pakistan Special Service Group

Pakistan Special Service Group

Austrian Jagkommando

The Austrian Jagkommando is a special unit dedicated to fighting terrorism and other dangers. If you are wondering what Jagkommando means, the good translation is ‘Manhunt Command’. Training for this special unit is not easy and only about 20% make it to the end. Only the best get to stay and experience active duty and make a difference.

Austrian Jagdkommando

Austrian Jagdkommando

Taiwan Republic of China Armed Forces

This Special Unit is made up of the men and women from the Police, Army, Navy and Air Force of China. They were formed back in 1924 and their main task was to take back Mainland China from “’70s from the People’s Republic of China”. China won’t be as safe as it now if it weren’t for the members of this special unit.

Taiwan Republic Of China Armed Forces

Taiwan Republic Of China Armed Forces

Peruvian Armed Forces

In 1821, the Peruvian Armed Forces was formed with people coming from the Air Force, Navy, Army and Joint Command to tackle domestic issues. They were known to paint their faces and they report directly to the Peruvian President and the Ministry of Defense.

Peruvian Armed Forces

Peruvian Armed Forces

Canadian JTF2

The Canadian JTF2 is the special unit that takes a job that no else would dare take. They are specially trained to deal with Nuclear Warfare Defense and to counter terrorism. They are highly trained and located outside of Ottawa, Ontario. Their activities are a well-kept secret by the Canadian government and we are pretty sure that they are covered with good insurance.

Canadian JTF2

Canadian JTF2

US Delta Force

One of the most secretive special units and the most important in the United States is the 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta. They take their very important missions privately that you will never hear any of it. The US Delta Force was formed in 1977 to counter terrorism, respond to rescue missions and help in hostage situations. They are deployed in any part of the world and their job is mostly based on the British SAS list.

U.S. Delta Force

U.S. Delta Force

German KSK

The German KSK is one of the most elite Special Forces in the whole world and to join the unit, one must have loads of determination in order to make it. It is said that in order to complete the requirements of joining the unit, one must graduate from 17 different schools all over the world in order to maximize one’s skills. A good insurance coverage may offer some assurance but not necessarily a primary requirement although you might want to get one.

German KSK

German KSK

Danish Hunter Corps

The Royal Danish Army has an extension and that is the Danish Hunter Corps. This special unit was formed in 1961 but became useful just in 1995 when it was first deployed to Bosnia. Only 150 scary-looking soldiers belong to this unit and if you see one, you probably would like to consider that once in a lifetime experience tantamount to winning the lottery.

Danish Hunter Corps

Danish Hunter Corps

Serbian Gendarmerie

The Serbian Gendarmerie was established in 2001 as an extension of the Serbian Ministry of Internal Affairs. This special unit has two different sub-units which are the Special Police Unit and the Special Operations Unit. They are not just a military unit but also a civilian unit in many cities. They are first in line when doing rescue missions and countering terrorism. No one would want to cross these guys anytime.

Serbian Gendarmerie

Serbian Gendarmerie

Iraqi Special Operations Forces

The “Golden Division” or the Iraqi Special Operations Forces was established in 2004. The unit is deployed to the most dangerous places in the world in order to counter the dangers of the Islamic State and the Mosul. This special unit has about 18,000 soldiers working under the directions of the Iraqi Counter Terrorist Service.

Iraqi Special Operations Forces

Iraqi Special Operations Forces

US Army Special Forces Snipers

If you have seen the 2014 film, “The American Sniper”, you probably know Chris Kyle. He is one of the most popular US Army Special Forces Snipers. This unit holds the best and toughest soldiers that are often deployed to dangerous places on earth mostly working alone and waiting to make that history-changing shot. The members of this unit are highly trained and have passed all Special Forces Qualification Courses.

U.S. Army Special Forces Snipers

U.S. Army Special Forces Snipers

French Commandos Marine

The French Commandos Marine is on the top of the rank as the most highly skilled Special Forces unit in the whole world. This unit is a top notch in our Top 10 list and they are one of the oldest special units that you would not want to see on the other side of the battlefield. There are about 600 soldiers here who are also called “the Green Berets”.

French Commandos Marine

French Commandos Marine

Russian Spetsnaz

Russia is considered one of the superpower countries not just because of its sustainable cities or low insurance coverage but because of its armed forces unit. All the special military units within the Russian Military system are called the Russian Spetsnaz.

Russian Spetsnaz

Russian Spetsnaz

Irish Army Ranger Wing

During the 1980s, Ireland had problems with terrorism and so they established the Irish Army Ranger Wing. This special unit was formed to combat terrorism and its threat. They now have a global goal of helping address the conflicts in different countries all over the world and help with the peace-keeping missions in sustainable cities. The members of this unit come from the Irish Army, Air Force, and Naval Service.

Irish Army Ranger Wing

Irish Army Ranger Wing

Indian MARCOS

One of the most respected special units in the world is the Indian MARCOS. They were established in 1987 but are not very popular because they come in unique disguises. They are commonly known as the “Bearded Army”. This highly-private special unit does not have much information available about them.

Indian MARCOS

Indian MARCOS

German Kampfschwimmer

The German Kampfschwimmer is an elite fighting unit formed from the German Navy. The age bracket of the soldiers in this unit is between 17 to 25 with no one younger or older than that range. It is almost impossible to pass the entrance test of this special unit from the German Navy.

German Kampfschwimmer

German Kampfschwimmer

French Special Forces

In 2017, when terrorism threatened Europe, the French Special Forces became increasingly active once again. This special unit was established back in 1992 after the Gulf War. The highly-trained and well-prepared soldiers of the French Special Forces are on the front lines during terrorist activities. They are always ready whenever there is a threat to Europe

French Special Forces

French Special Forces

US Navy Seals

One of the most terrifying special units in the world is the US Navy Seals. Their motto of “Sea, Air and Land” means they are deployed anywhere in the world doing back up jobs for the government. Being one of the top on the ranks of fearsome soldiers just proves how tough this unit is.

U.S. Navy Seals

U.S. Navy Seals

Turkish Maroon Berets

During the 2004 Special Forces Competition, this unit went ahead to beat the US Delta Force and grab the number one spot. The Maroon Berets became very popular when they went ahead and diffused a bomb in 8 seconds beating the US Delta Force by 6 seconds. For a candidate to successfully become a part of the unit, it will take three and a half years to complete training and during training, they must remain fit and healthy.

Maroon Berets

Maroon Berets

Australia’s SASR

For the same reason of establishing the British SAS, the Australian Special Air Service Regiment was formed. In 2016, the unit was under heavy scrutiny when it was reported that they have been cutting off the hands of the rebels during an operation in Afghanistan. The SASR currently has top-secret operations in Afghanistan together with other special units of commonwealth countries.

SASR Australia

SASR Australia

Russia’s FSB

The Russian people are known to fear this unit from the KGB FSB. It was said that anyone in Russia’s Federal Security Service unit can shoot targets legally if given the orders from the Russian president, Vladimir Putin. The unit focuses its operations on border control, terrorism threats, foreign intelligence, and phone-tapping.

Russian FSB

Russian FSB

Israel’s “Mistarvim” – Duvdevan

Fearsome operations behind enemy lines are being conducted by the Mistarvim unit of Duvdevan. The members of the unit dress like the Arab civilians so they can easily blend and strike anytime when their targets are at bay. They have weapons with them all the time and they have a backup which is the uniformed auxiliary force that immediately responds during the scene when the Mistarvim has pounced in its target.

Duvdevan

Duvdevan

Poland’s GROM

Poland’s GROM was established as an anti-terrorism unit with training patterned after the British SAS and the US Navy Seals. They have helped in operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and most especially with ISIL. This unit is highly trained to counter terrorism, protect the perimeter, rescue hostages, and support other military units as well as other non-military units.

Polish GROM

Polish GROM

South Africa’s Special Task Force

What made this team to our list is their terrifying “shoot first, ask questions later” method of operation. This special unit is actually composed of police officers trained like an elite military unit. They are the people to respond to situations that normal cops could not handle. These jobs include Armed robberies, VIP protection and hostage situations whether on land, air or water.

South African Special Task Force

South African Special Task Force

Estonia’s Special Forces (ESTSOF)

In the Arctic Nation, the Estonia Special Forces was established as a special unit that underwent tough training. It is said that members of this late-bloomer Special Forces unit were exposed to freezing temperatures, short courses of sleep (1 to 4 hours every night) and rigorous hours of workmanship training. The number of operatives in this unit is something we cannot track.

ESTSOF Estonia

ESTSOF Estonia

Brazil’s SOC

This team is trained to be prepared at all times to counter any small or large-scale attacks. The Brazil SOC is one of the largest Special Forces units in the world. They were in charge of safeguarding the 2016 FIFA soccer World Cup held in Brazil. Their mission was to make sure that terrorism threats will not get in the way of the world cup.

Brazil Special Forces

Brazil Special Forces

Italy’s Leatherheads

The Gruppo di Intervento Speciale or GIS started as a police unit and was upgraded in 2004 composed of 150 team members. Commander Alfa headed the team in providing security to dignitaries during the G7 Italian Presidency last May and he is the only authorized member to speak in behalf of the team.

Leatherheads

Leatherheads

South Korea’s White Tigers

The South Korea White Tigers was formed in 1972 following the massacre at the Munich Olympics. This anti-terrorism unit is comprised of about 200 men and women designated with various duties and responsibilities to make sure that the 1988 games being held in Korea was safe.

White Tigers

White Tigers

Belgium’s Special Forces

You can expect to find Belgium’s top commandos all over the world, from Kosovo to Bosnia, to former Zaire to Somalia. Those who want to enlist in the special unit need 3 years of military experience, and those who are para-commandos have all the more chance of making it. Training for this special forces unit is especially tough and includes an exercise with a 48 hour time limit in which soldiers navigate an 100km+ individual map-reading exercise.

Belgian Special Forces

Belgium’s Special Forces

New Zealand’s SAS

New Zealand’s SAS was once known as the Long Range Desert Group, the nickname inaugurated during World War 2. Those applying for the unit go through tasking and extremely stressful conditions; the cream of the crop are what’s left standing. Medical and demolition skills, necessary navigation, and weapon handling all have to be perfect before the celebrated sand-colored beret is received.

New Zealands SAS

New Zealand’s SAS

Indonesia’s Kopassus

The Southeast Asian island of Indonesia has dealt with instances of terror not many other countries have ever experienced. The Kopassus members are some of the fiercest soldiers out there, doing anything necessary for their team. It isn’t rare for the fighters to change their identities, adapting to new situations and conditions. This special forces unit’s motto is “Brave, Rightful, and Successful”.

Indonesian Kopassus

Indonesia’s Kopassus

USA’s Green Berets

The American Green Berets, also known as the “Snake Eaters” have been going strong since their inauguration during WWII. The unit mainly battles counter-terrorism, foreign internal defense, special reconnaissance, unconventional warfare, and direct action.

Green Berets

USA’s Green Berets

Romania’s Special Forces

Romania’s Special Forces unit was put into service in the year 2009. Although they haven’t been around for as long as other units of the kind, don’t be fooled by their abilities. Their training is especially grueling, ensuring the soldiers are ready to operate in Afghanistan alongside special units forces from all over the world.

Romanian Special Forces

Romania’s Special Forces

Mexico’s GAFE

Mexico’s GAFE train with the American units of their kind, so you know they are not a group to mess with. The unit of no more than 100 fighters mainly train in counter-terrorism and they receive orders directly from the Secretary of National Defense. Mexico also has an amphibious warfare unit who specialize in keeping their vast coastline safe.

Mexican Elite

Mexico’s GAFE

Norway’s Forsvarets Spesialkommando

You know they’re elite when no one even knew they existed! Norways Forsvarets Spesialkommando were only made public in 1994 after an airplane hijacking attempt by a Norwegian local went array. The unit specialize in abroad missions, most notably, the destruction of chemical weapons in Syria.

Norways Elite

Norway’s Forsvarets Spesialkommando

South Africa’s Recces

South Africa’s Recces got their name from being reconnaissance commandos. An operator of the South African Special Forces made a famous sniper kill with a confirmed distance of 2,125m. The Recces work on their land and abroad, hunting down terrorists and wanted criminals. The unit’s sworn motto is “We fear naught but God”.

South African Special Forces

South Africa’s Recces

France’s Groupe d’intervention de la Gendarmerie nationale (GIGN)

The GIGN is one of France’s Special Forces Units. This unit in particular deal with hostage rescues from severely dangerous and severe situations. The GIGN were responsible for the successful outcome of the 1994 Air France hijacking, storming the plane and killing all 4 hijackers.

GIGN Operatives

France’s Groupe d’intervention de la Gendarmerie nationale (GIGN)

Colombia’s AFEUR

Agrupación de Fuerzas Especiales Antiterroristas Urbanas also known as AFEUR is Colombia’s hardcore special forces unit. This group deals with the protection of VIPs, most notably American presidents and dignitaries. But, that’s not all. Not much is disclosed about this unit, but we do know that they play a significant role in the war against guerrillas threatening Colombia.

Colombias AFEUR

Colombia’s AFEUR

Nigeria’s Special Commandos

Nigeria’s Special Commandos is another unit that not much is known about. We do know however, that recently the soldiers of Nigeria’s unit trained with Pakistan’s SSG. Many are frightened by this group mainly because of the “trigger-ready” tactics they adopt.

Nigerias Elite

Nigeria’s Special Commandos

Denmark’s Frogman Corps

Denmark’s Frogman Corps are a unit who also trained alongside the British SAS. This unit has been in action since 1957, so it’s fair to say they know their stuff. They mainly cover law enforcement, and search-and-rescue operations, but don’t be surprised to find them elsewhere too.

Denmarks Navy Seals1

Denmark’s Frogman Corps

Portugal’s Special Forces

In the southwestern nook of Europe alongside Spain, sits Portugal. Portugal’s Special Forces are responsible for combating piracy, as well as the recent spike of terror attacks across Europe. They mainly focus on hostage missions, unconventional warfare, direct action and other special operations.

Portugal Special Forces

Portugal’s Special Forces

Britain’s Special Boat Service

Britain’s Special Boat Service (SBS) is regarded as SAS’s sea sister…or brother! As you may have guessed, this group of fighters are responsible for sea-related encounters. The SBS have faced wars for decades, as well as abroad rescue and hostage missions. Understandably, their motto is “By strength and guile”; don’t expect anything less than top performance from these lads. Another private unit, the British army discloses nothing on their missions.

SBS In Action

Britain’s Special Boat Service

The Ghost Army Of World War 2

The Ghost Army, also known as the 23rd Headquarters Special Troops, are one of the smartest military units ever created. Although they are no longer in service, their legacy lives on. This unit was actually no unit, or army at all; all it consisted of was inflatable tanks, fake uniforms and loudspeakers blaring the sounds of tanks rolling into positions. The enemies were not only fearful, but they also became confused, proving this unit was one of the most successful of its kind. During World War II, The Ghost Army threw the Germans off, propelling them into attacking the wrong location, and in the end awarding a victory to the allies.

Dummy Tank

The Ghost Army Of World War 2

Korps Mariniers

The Netherland’s Maritime Special Operations Forces (NLMARSOF) are the country’s Marine Corps elite units. This special forces unit deals with everything: from parachutes and snowmobiles, to submarines and mountain warfare. They are prepared and trained for everything and anything. Impressively, in just 48 hours, they’re able to be deployed to any location in the world; makes sense as their motto is “Qua Patet Orbis” or “As Far As The World Extends.”

Korps Mariniers

Korps Mariniers

Marinejegerkommandoen

Norway’s ‘Special Operation Command’s Maritime And Naval Special Warfare Unit” (MJK) was established in 1953. Currently, the unit is trained for counter-terrorism missions, direct action, arctic warfare, special reconnaissance, swampland warfare and hostage recovery…AKA everything. Their training is understandably tough, 8/200 applicants finishing victorious. Imagine being pursued by an enemy while carrying 130 lbs…yeah, neither can we. Oh, and after they’re captured, they’re questioned for 36 hours straight.

Marinejegerkommandoen

Marinejegerkommandoen

1st Scout Rangers

The Scout Rangers are the Philippines’ “Army Of Special Operations Command Unit”. They deal with everything from close quarters combat, ambushes and raids, to sabotage, urban warfare and anti-guerrilla jungle warfare. In 2000, the world became aware of their expertise when they captured the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebel camp.

1st Scout Ranger Regiment

1st Scout Ranger

Särskilda Operationsgruppen

The Swedish Special Operations Task Group (SOG) deal with missions that cannot be done with standard weapons systems or conventional forces. They are best at eliminating high-targets valuable to the enemy, combatting hostage situations, and gathering time-critical intelligence. They are also responsible for  training and advising foreign militaries on peace-keeping operations. The unit trains in a state-of-the-art secret compound that has bullet-absorbing lining in its walls. Too cool.

Särskilda Operationsgruppen

Särskilda Operationsgruppen

Naval Special Warfare Command

The Thai Navy Seals came about in 1956 thanks to help from the US Navy SEALs. You wouldn’t believe it, but this unit actually has a small element specially trained for maritime counter-terrorism missions. When tensions are heightened on the Thailand border, the Navy’s “Underwater Demolition Assault Unit” gather intelligence and responds accordingly. The Royal Thai Seals recently went to fight piracy in Somalia.

Naval Special Warfare Command

Naval Special Warfare Command

COMANF

Brazil’s COMANF, or Comandos Anfíbios, is headquartered in Rio de Janeiro. The unit’s slogan is “Um Comanf é imbatível, dois são inseparáveis e três fazem guerra” or “One Comanf is unbeatable, two are unseparable and three wage war.” These soldiers are superior at counterintelligence, rappelling, mountaineering and advanced reconnaissance, among other special training.

COMANF

COMANF

Canadian Special Operations Regiment

The Canadian Special Operations Regiment, CSOR, provides backup for Canada’s Joint Task Force. The unit works both in the country and anywhere in the world. They specialize in special reconnaissance, counter-terrorism, direct action and defense diplomacy.

Canadian Special Operations Regiment

Canadian Special Operations Regiment

Finnish Border Guard

The Finnish Border Guard enforces security at the country’s borders, and they have a lot of power with police and investigative authority concerning immigration matters. They also deal with both maritime and inland search & rescue missions.

Finnish Border Guard

Finnish Border Guard

Kommando Spezialkräfte Marine

Kampfschwimmer (KSM) is Germany’s only special-purpose unit within the Navy. The unit was created in 1955 upon Germany joining NATO. The original unit took any man who did not have a Nazi past, but today the training is quite difficult. Trainees must run 5,000 meters in less than 24 minutes, swim 30 meters underwater without equipment and stay underwater without breathing for 60 seconds. Crazy enough, the physical aspect of the training is much easier than the psychological part.

Kommando Spezialkräfte Marine

Kommando Spezialkräfte Marine

1st Raider/Paratrooper Brigade

The Greek elite forces are simply known as the Raider Forces. Their uniform has their unit insignia with a winged sword, representing the “deadly, silent and swift”. Next to the winged sword is a scroll with the unit’s motto, “Who Dares Wins”. This unit is trained in airborne operations, reconnaissance and guerrilla warfare.

1st Raider Paratrooper Brigade

1st Raider/Paratrooper Brigade

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