Company C, 1/19th Special Forces Group (Airborne)

Special Forces Ranger Airborne Symbol


Special Forces units perform seven doctrinal missions: Unconventional Warfare, Foreign Internal Defense, Special Reconnaissance, Direct Action, Combatting Terrorism, Counter-proliferation, and Information Operations. These missions make Special Forces unique in the U.S. military, because they are employed throughout the three stages of the operational continuum: peacetime, conflict and war.


Special Forces Command’s Unconventional Warfare capabilities provide a viable military option for a variety of operational taskings that are inappropriate or infeasible for conventional forces, making it the U.S. military’s premier unconventional warfare force. Foreign Internal Defense operations, SF’s main peacetime mission, are designed to help friendly developing nations by working with their military and police forces to improve their technical skills, understanding of human rights issues, and to help with humanitarian and civic action projects. Often SF units are required to perform additional, or collateral, activities outside their primary missions. These collateral activities are coalition warfare/support, combat search and rescue, security assistance, peacekeeping, humanitarian assistance, humanitarian de-mining and counter-drug operations. Coalition warfare/support emerged as a result of Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm and continues today in both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. This activity ensures the ability of a wide variety of foreign troops to work together effectively in a wide variety of military exercises or operations.

Core Competencies

  • Unconventional Warfare Operations (UW):
    • UW is a broad spectrum of military and/ or paramilitary operations and activities, normally of long duration, conducted through with or by indigenous or surrogate forces who are organized, trained, equipped, supported and otherwise directed in varying degrees by an external source. UW can be conducted across the range of military operations against regular and irregular forces, state-sponsored or not.
  • Foreign Internal Defense (FID):
    • SF asses, train, advise, and assist host nation military and paramilitary forces in order to enable these forces to maintain the host nation’s internal stability, to counter subversion and violence in their country and to address the causes of instability.
  • Direct Actions (DA):
    • DA missions are short-duration strikes and other small scale offensive actions conducted in hostile, denied, or politically-sensitive environments. These missions employ specialized military capabilities to seize, destroy, capture, exploit, recover personnel or equipment or damage designated targets.
  • Special Reconnaissance (SR):
    • SR actions are conducted in hostile, denied, or politically-sensitive environments to collect or verify information of strategic or operational significance, employing military capabilities not normally found in conventional forces. SR includes target acquisition, area assessment and post-strike reconnaissance.
  • Counterterrorism (CT):
    • CT operations include the offensive measures taken to prevent, deter, preempt and respond to terrorism. SF Soldiers apply specialized capabilities to conduct these operations in environments that may be denied to conventional forces because of political or threat conditions.
  • Counter-proliferation (CP):
    • CP actions are designed to locate, seize destroy, render safe, capture or recover weapons of mass destruction, or WMD, in order to prevent the acquisition of WMD and delivery systems, to roll back proliferation where it has occurred, and to deter the use of WMD and its delivery systems.
  • Support of Information Operations (IO):
    • IO actions are taken to affect adversary information and information systems while defending one’s own information and information systems in order to affect or defend information and information systems to influence decision making. IO includes electronic warfare, computer network operations, PSYOP, military deception and operations security in concert with targeting, special technologies and modeling capabilities to facilitate mission accomplishment across the range of military operations. If you would like to become a Special Forces Soldier in California, or just want to learn more, we invite you to look around. If you are preparing for Special Forces Readiness Evaluation (SFRE), important information and required documents are to the left.

Special Forces Soldiers

  • Are part of a unique, unconventional combat arms organization.
  • Are known as the “quiet professionals” and sometimes referred to as “green berets”.
  • Are the most versatile Special Operations (SO) Soldiers in the world.
  • Are highly trained and tested, and must pass a rigorous qualification course at Fort Bragg.
  • Are the world’s premier Unconventional Warfare (UW) operators.
  • Have the ability to teach, train, advise and assist partner-nation forces.
  • Learn and adapt to an area’s native language and cultureThe life of a Special Forces Soldier is rewarding, but is also stressful and challenging. Here are a few of the skills you must have and challenges you must manage to be successful.

The Special Forces Military Occupational Specialties: A Warrior’s Tradecraft

  • MOS 18A: Special Forces Officer
  • MOS 180A: Special Forces Warrant Officer
  • MOS 18B: Special Forces Weapons NCO
  • MOS 18C: Special Forces Engineer NCO
  • MOS 18D: Special Forces Medical NCO
  • MOS 18E: Special Forces Communications NCO
  • MOS 18F: Special Forces Intelligence NCO

The National Guard SF Soldier

  • Is held to the exact same standard as their active duty counterparts
  • Must find time away from their civilian jobs to attend mandatory schools, some of which can last nearly a year.
  • Must attend monthly drills and deployments well beyond “one weekend a month – two weeks a year”.

Enlisted SFRE candidates must be on a military duty status to attend. Candidates are welcome from any branch, and any component, with any MOS.

  • Minimum age of 20. No maximum age, based on military qualifications and individual evaluation
  • Must be a U.S. citizen (no waiver)
  • Must be in the pay grade of E-3 to E-7
  • Must have a General Technical (GT) score of 105 or higher (no waiver), or actively working to raise GT score
  • Must be able to meet medical fitness standards for Airborne and Special Forces training as outlined in Chap. 5, AR 40-501, Standards of Medical Fitness
  • Must be either Airborne qualified or willing to volunteer for Airborne training
  • Must possess, or be eligible for a secret security clearance.
  • Must not be flagged, or barred from re-enlistment
  • Must not have been convicted by court-martial or have disciplinary action (Article 15/NJP) noted in your official military personnel file (OMPF) under the provisions of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
  • Must be able to swim 50 meters unassisted, wearing boots and a military field uniform, prior to beginning the Special Forces Qualification Course (SFQC)
  • Must not have been terminated from Airborne, Ranger, or Special Forces training
  • Must have a minimum of 36 months remaining TIS upon completion of the SFQC. If not, then must extend or reenlist before starting SFQC.

Officer Requirements:

  • Minimum age of 20. No maximum age, based on military qualifications and individual evaluation
  • Must be a U.S. citizen (no waiver)
  • Must hold the rank of O-2(P) or O-3 (with no more than 4yrs TIG)
  • Must be either Airborne qualified or willing to volunteer for Airborne training
  • Must be able to swim 50 meters unassisted, while wearing boots and military field uniform
  • Must be able to meet medical fitness standards for military service, Airborne and Special Forces as outlined in Chap. 5, AR 40-501, Standards of Medical Fitness
  • Must have a secret security clearance and be eligible for a top secret security clearance.
  • Must not have any drug or alcohol related law violations.
  • Must not have been terminated from Airborne, Ranger, or Special Forces duty

SFRE graded events include the following:

  • Three-event Army Physical Fitness Test: 90 points in each event at male 17-21 year old scale
    • Push Ups: 64 (minimum)
    • Sit Ups: 72 (minimum)
    • Run: 13:42 (minimum)
  • Swim Test (50 meters wearing military field uniform and boots): pass/no pass
  • Pull-ups (chin over bar): As many as possible
  • Rope climb: pass/no pass
  • Run: Unknown distance, as fast as possible
  • Road march with military ruck-sack (45 lbs dry weight): Unknown distance, EIB standard 4 MPH pace

Joining the Special Forces

If you are ready to commit; there are two paths to joining the Special Forces Regiment through the California Army National Guard.

  1. Special Forces Enlistment Option (18X Contract)
    • Are you a civilian with no prior military experience? You may qualify.
    • Are you prior-service military (USN/USAF/USCG or are you USMC/Army with five year break in service)? You may be eligible for an 18X Special Forces Contract.
  2. Special Forces Readiness Evaluation (SFRE)
    • Are you currently serving in the military with a GT score of 105 or higher? You may be eligible to try out at an SFRE while serving in any military branch or component.

Contact SSG Martinez to determine eligibility or to be added to the SFRE roster. 


  • Alberto Martinez
    SSG, Special Forces Recruiting
    Recruiting & Retention Battalion
    California Army National Guard
    C: 714-497-7447

Next Tryout (SFRE)