Special operations


Special operations

Special operations are military operations that are considered "special" (that is, non-conventional).

Examples of special operations include such operations such as reconnaissance/military intelligence, unconventional warfare, and counter-terrorism actions. Special operations are sometimes associated with unconventional warfare, counter-insurgency (operations against insurgents), operations against guerrillas or irregular forces, low-intensity operations, and foreign internal defense.

Special operations may be carried out by conventional forces but are often carried out by special forces (SF), which are military units that are often highly-trained and use special equipment, weapons, and tactics. They are sometimes described as "elite" forces.


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