Coined by the Dutch settlers in Southern Africa, the term Commando - a soldier or operative of an elite light infantry or special operations force - has been in existence since the 17th Century, featuring in the Boer War, both World Wars, many contemporary battles and, oh yes, the Arnold Schwarzenegger cult classic of the same name.
In the UK, the present day holders of the Commando baton are the Royal Marines. Here are the 10 essential characteristics that the Marines look for when searching for the true Commando spirit in recruits:
- Professional Standards
- Commando Humour
And how do they test their raw recruits to discover if they’ve got what it takes?
After 26 weeks of rigorous basic training recruits commence a 4 week Commando Course phase which tests their every sinew in simulated combat conditions. The final week of this 4 week period is called Test Week. Each and every one of them is timed over a series of grueling challenges – these are called the Commando Tests. These tests consist of…
– A nine-mile speed march
– The Tarzan/Assault course
– An endurance course
– And a 30-mile trek across Dartmoor
In addition, all of the recruits have to carry a weapon and 21lbs of kit in their webbing.
So... do you have what it takes to be a Commando?