The US and its partners across the Central Command region may have developed an over-reliance on special operations forces (SOF), sometimes at the expense of conventional forces capabilities.
Lt Gen William Beydler, Commander, Marine Corps Forces, Central Command, observed at this week’s Global SOF Symposium in Tampa, Florida: ‘My sense is for the past 17 years our nation has been absolutely fascinated with SOF.
‘And that’s because SOF has done a lot of great things for us as a nation; a lot of great things for us across the globe,’ he added.
‘They have done away with a number of folks who have harmed us or intend to harm us. And that’s all good.’
‘My concern in all of this is that we have become perhaps overly-reliant on SOF,’ he stated, noting one result was a scaled-down mission creep, where SOF is now doing a number of things where conventional forces, especially highly trained and highly conditioned conventional forces, used to do, and used to do rather well.