Sua Sponte

Sua Sponte

The Forging of A Modern American Ranger

Book - 2012
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Sua Sponte

Latin for "Of Their Own Accord"


The 75th Ranger Regiment is a unique and distinct culture among the American military establishment. They stand alone, even among our other Special Operations forces, as the most active brigade-sized force in the current Global War on Terrorism. Since 9/11, The Regiment is the only continuously-engaged unit in the Army, and has had forty percent of its number deployed in harm's way for the last decade. Their mission is unique. Rangers do not patrol, they don't train allied forces, nor do they engage in routine counterinsurgency duties. They have a single-mission focus; they seek out the enemy and they capture or kill them. It sets Rangers apart as pure, direct-action warriors.

Army Rangers are not born. They are made. The modern 75th Ranger Regiment represents the culmination of 250 years of American soldiering. As the nation's oldest standing military unit, The Regiment traces its origins to Richard Rogers' Rangers during the pre-revolutionary French and Indian War, through the likes of Francis Marion and John Mosby, to the five active Ranger battalions of the Second World War, and finally, to the four battalions of the current Ranger regiment engaged in modern combat. Over that period, a standard of professional excellence and the forging of that excellence is distilled in the selection, assessment, and training of today's Rangers.

Granted unprecedented access to the training of this highly-restricted component of America's Special Operations Forces in a time of war, retired Navy Captain Dick Couch tells the personal story of the young men who begin this difficult and dangerous journey to become a Ranger. Many will try but only a select few will survive to serve in the 75th ranger regiment. Sua Sponte follows a group of these aspiring young warriors through the crucible that is ranger training and their preparation for direct-action missions in Afghanistan against the Taliban.

Publisher: New York : Berkley Books, 2012.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780425247587
Branch Call Number: 356.167 COU
Characteristics: xviii, 364 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.


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LRS1969 Sep 08, 2015

Another winner in his series of nonfiction books by the exceptional Dick Couch (when a former, Vietnam combat veteran and hero SEAL writes a - previous - book where he, correctly, identifies the Special Forces, Green Berets, as America's best OVERALL special operations unit and the best tool that America's military has in the GWOT, well, THAT is something -- see "Chosen Soldier").

The only negative item that I noted was that at the end of the book Couch speaks about the death (KIA) of Ranger Sergeant Domeji during his FOURTEENTH combat rotation since 9/11 (rotations typically being 6 months)... and (very correctly) cautions our political leaders to make damn sure that there are very serious matters of national concern before we put our men (and women) in harm's way.

Unfortunately, early in the book he makes the error of talking about how the Rangers have "benefited" from our engagement in a "long war". No. No one benefits from a long war. As far back as at least Sun Tzu it has been recognized that long wars are of great detriment.

BTW, this is NOT a book about The Ranger School where one wins the Ranger Tab (but NOT entry into a Ranger unit). Though The Ranger School is discussed to a moderate degree late in the book, this book is about RASP and the training required to get into and stay with a Ranger unit (and earn the Ranger Scroll). Note: To stay with a Ranger unit and / or get promoted to E5 a "Scrolled Ranger" MUST attend and successfully pass the Ranger School and earn his Tab.

I also would recommend "Shadow Warriors" as a companion read as this is a book about the making of Rangers and has minimal discussion as to military actions.

Oct 20, 2012

Rangers All The Way. Very informative.


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