The Navy’s SEALs are well-known for their exotic guns—everything from machine gun to grenade launchers … and several iconic, quiet handguns.
The Navy stood up the Sea Air Lands teams in 1962 and quickly sent them to Vietnam to search out the enemy and work with local forces. The naval operators realized a suppressed pistol would be ideal for many of their most secretive missions.
“The value … of suppressed weapons had been noted prior to the teams deploying for combat operations in Vietnam,” noted SEAL historian Kevin Dockery writes in his book Special Warfare Special Weapons . “But very few weapons of that type were available during the early years of the war.”