View Full Version : Prior to 18x

02-09-2005, 13:33
Currently my son is finishing 18e training in phase 3. He is an 18x. He went to basic and infantry school and jump school at Fort Benning, then to Fort Bragg and sopc 1, assessment and selection, etc. My question is related to the first 18x which believe took place in the late 70's. Was it similar to the current 18x program? Did everyone go to basic at he same location?

02-09-2005, 14:33
the 18 series of military occupational specialties did not exist until the mid 80s...before then, from my experience, the path to Special Forces qualification was varied...in my day (mid 70s) a soldier went through basic training, then advanced individual training, perhaps the same place as he took basic, perhaps not...after that, jump school and then, when a soldier had SF as part of his enlistment contract, he went to Fort Bragg where he was put into the training and qualification pipeline...soldiers came into the pipeline after jumpschool at Fort Benning, but were previously at Fort Gordon GA (communications types), Fort Sam Houston TX (medics) and Fort Leonard Wood MO (combat engineers)...the weapons guys were trained at Benning, Fort Jackson SC, Fort Polk LA, Fort Ord CA, Fort McClellan AL and any other place where one could achieve an infantry MOS...in addition to these folks, guys like myself, who had served an enlistment in a conventional, airborne or Ranger unit came into the class to be qualified...

a generation before that, (late 50s, early 60s) qualification was done at unit level within the Special Forces group...

formal military training courses are in a constant state of evolution, driven by budgetary reasons, operational reasons, the bee under a new commander's saddle, whatever...

after graduating from OCS, i attended the Infantry Officers' Basic Course...after my first two assignments as an officer, i went back to that course as an instructor...sixteen years after that, my elder son went through the course as a reserve officer...the core of the course was more or less the same...the course i attended was 14 weeks long...the course i instructed at was 16 weeks at the beginning of my tour and 17 1/2 weeks by the end...the course my son attended was 19 weeks long...

02-13-2005, 16:17
Thanks for the info. I enlisted in 1972. basic at ft. ord, ait(infantry) @ fort polk. I don't remember anyone talking about a SF option. was it available then? Also, you mentioned 14 weeks. What was the curriculum then?

02-13-2005, 16:29
I was a prior service 911.10 (91B10) when I went to jump school in the summer of '65. One day at Benning, we were marched to a theater, ushered inside, and shown a movie about Special Forces. At the end of the flick, the MMFIC Sergeant said, "Anyone who does not want to be in Special Forces, may leave." I did not. Good move, I got a CIB rather than a CMB. As you know, medics get paid for the same things that infantrymen get medals for.... I hope you will pardon the prepositional ending, but that's my story & I'm sticking to it.