Yesterday there was an information in newsfeeds that, in order to work out the scenarios for the elimination of the leader of the DPRK Kim Jong-Yin, in addition to the US Navy group deployed near the coast of Korea, an elite division of the Navy Seals 6 (SEAL Team Six), specialised on combating terrorism was transferred to South Korea. In 2011, fighters of this detachment of "Navy Seals" became famous for having killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan.

SEAL Team Six

The creator of this team was Richard Marcinko. I learned about this man in the early 90's after reading his book. During the crisis caused by the seizure of American hostages in Iran in 1979, Marsinko was one of two representatives of the Navy in the Joint Chiefs of Staff of Special Forces, known as the TAT (Terrorist Action Team).

The purpose of the TAT was to develop a plan for the release of American hostages held in Iran, which was implemented during the operation "Eagle Claw". In the failure of operations in the desert, the US Navy saw the need to create a team specializing in anti-terrorist activities, and Marsinko received a task to create and develop it.

So Marsinko became the first commanding officer of this new unit, which he named the SEAL Team Six. At that time the US Navy had only two SEAL teams, and, presumably, Marcinko called the the unit Team Six to entangle the Soviet Union, forcing its leaders to believe that there are supposedly three more teams they do not know about.

Oficers were picked up by Marcinko himself from the entire community of the US Navy's Special Operations Forces. SEAL Team Six was was the first counterterrorism unit of the US Navy that compares with the special unit of the US Army Delta. In fact, Delta and ST6 were similar units in different types of armed forces - Delta in the Army, ST6 - in the US Navy.

Marcinko commanded SEAL Team Six for three years from 1980 to 1983.

Now the US special forces will take part in secret military exercises. The decision to hold them was made after the worsening of the situation around the development of the DPRK nuclear program. I do not want to go into details about the fighting efficiency of this unit, but I think it is necessary to note the following. 

Undoubtedly, this team is one of the most well-trained and equipped special forces in the world. As for military operations, there is nothing particularly remarkable, except for the assassination of Osama bin Laden. And then this operation in fact took place in hothouse conditions and on the territory of the ally, Pakistan. But even there they managed to lose the helicopter. In my opinion, there was nothing heroic in that operation. The world knows about this team mostly from Hollywood heroic movies. Therefore, I think that the US special forces will never have the courage to conduct special operations on the territory of the DPRK. At best, they can stand next to the border, take salfies and tell the deed to the end of their lives. But this is only my opinion, which I do not impose on anyone.

Forces of special operations of the DPRK

And now I want to remind you again a little of how the real fighters of the DPRK special forces are operating.

On a foggy September morning of 1996, a Coast Guard ship of the Republic of Korea in its territorial waters saw to its horror a small submarine seated on reefs near Kangnung, a sea route running along the eastern coast of Korea, that was identified as an ultra-small submarine of Special Military units of The North Korean navy.

The submarine belonged to the Sang-O class, with a displacement of 325 tons and could transport about 40 saboteurs. It was empty. The issue was also that the warships of the Republic of Korea, which were fighting patrolling their territorial waters and possessing ultra-modern systems for detecting underwater, surface and air targets, could not find a North Korean submarine.

After the servicemen came to their senses, they analyzed the situation and came to the conclusion that there were about 40 people on the submarine. There was a question - where did they go? The answer was disappointing - they are somewhere on the territory of South Korea. And, judging by the fact that the submarine sat on reefs near the shore, the combat swimmers safely reached the shore, and tried to break through into the territory of the DPRK.

To intercept the saboteurs there was deployed the largest military operation, which involved, according to various estimates, from 10 to 40 thousand people, not counting the police units. They hunted them for 49 days (although it seems what they should look for so long!? - in our Leningrad region there are five Koreas), the combat divers were found. There were only twenty-six of them.

The battle was very hard, the North Koreans did not surrender. I express my most sincere respect to the DPRK special operation forcies - I always considered them to be the best (of course, this is my personal opinion). As a result, 13 saboteurs were killed in a skirmish with South Korean soldiers, 11 more committed suicide or were liquidated by their own comrades, and one managed to withdraw to the DPRK. The loss of South Koreans was 68 soldiers and policemen, 2 US servicemen, and 4 peasants who accidentally encountered North Koreans and were killed by them.

The only one captured solder ( Lee Hwang Su, the sailor from the submarine) was in the worst condition and could not prevent own capture. After he began to testify, it turned out that the task of the group was to explore South Korea's military infrastructure. But the whole plan went wrong when the submarine jumped out onto the reefs. The submariners and the saboteurs tried to return home with a fight.

In June 1998, a similar North Korean submarine was entangled in fishing nets near the South Korean city of Sokcho. Residents reported her to the police. Special units of the armed forces of the Republic of Korea rushed to the scene with the task of capturing the submarine, but this proved to be quite difficult. Entrance hatches and the airlock were blocked, so they had to resort to the help of a gas burner. They opened hatches with all the precautions, in case the ones are mined.

Finally, the hatches were opened and South Korean soldiers saw the bodies of North Korean submariners (as we know there were 12) who, in order not to be captured, committed suicide.

When the hatch of Submarine were opened South Korean soldiers saw the bodies of North Korean submariners (as we know there were 12) who, in order not to be captured, committed suicide.

In fact, I brought only a couple of modest but very revealing episodes of this tough and uncompromising war.

Since 1968, South Korea has over twenty identified penetrations of submarines and saboteurs into its territorial waters. The reconnaissance department of the DPRK General Staff is engaged in combat operations against South Korea. In its submission there are 12 diversionary brigades, two separate teams of special forces in the Navy, which include 48 submarines of the class San-O and Sozhu, plus a large number of high-speed semi-submersible boats.

These guys do not sit still, but very actively spoil the nerves of their South Korean counterparts! They regularly penetrate not only into the territory of southerners, but also constantly hang out in their territorial waters!

But also the DPRK special forces do not let live in peace to the Japanese. In the previous article, I already wrote about special operations conducted to kidnap Japanese citizens. Today I will tell about one more episode, which resulted in a battle with the ships of the Japanese Navy.

"The Mysterious Ship"

On the morning of August 22, 2001, the Japanese Air Force patrol aircraft discovered a suspicious vessel near the islands of Amami Oshima. Outwardly it looked like a simple fishing boat, there were piles of wet nets laied on the deck, scuffed, the sides red from the rust. Nothing special, the usual old wreck, like hundreds, dangling around the sea in search of fish. Nevertheless, the ship number 3705 was clearly seen, as well the Chinese port Zhejiang as a place of registration. At first glance, the situation was unremarkable. However, with a more careful examination, experienced pilots felt something was wrong. This ship aroused suspicion among them. Personally, I think that they had operational information on this ship, and the command decided to send a group of operatives there to conduct an inspection.

The fact is that the fishing schooner had come under the describing of the so-called "Mysterious ships" belonging to the reconnaissance department of the DPRK General Staff. It was even known that these ships are based in Wonsan, and there are usually a semi-submerged speedboat and a lock chamber for the reception and release of combat swimmers are on board of such schooners. The schooners were specially designed for secret operations on the Japanese coast.

The Japanese knew about such "fishermen", but they never managed to catch them. Well, North Korean agents on the coast, if accidentally fell into the hands of the Japanese counterintelligence, stubbornly remained silent, and denied their belonging to any special services.

However, this time the luck was not on the side of Koreans. And the Japanese watchmen began to chased the schooner. When the distance to the schooner was reduced, the fishermen opened heavy fire from small arms and grenade launchers. But the excitement of the sea was quite strong, and the rocket grenades flew by. The fire of Kalashnikov assault rifles was more accurate, and two border guards were wounded.

Hard fight lasted several minutes. As a result, the schooner sank, and the whole crew died. The next day, the Japanese managed to lift the bodies of two sailors. A few days later it was decided to raise the schooner, lying at a depth of 90 meters. As a result, the cost of the event was $ 50 million, and one day a powerful floating crane lifted a 180 ton ship over the water. During his research, special gates for launching boats and a lock chamber were discovered, as well there were found many assault rifles, RPGs and even portable SAMs scattered on bottom around the ship.

I want to note, so happened that I saw similar fishing schooners. In appearance is just a piece of wood - it is not clear how it is held on the water. But suddenly it gives full speed ... and you stand with a drooping jaw and watch how this fragile vessel with the huge speed of the Formula 1 car is leaving the coast guards far on it's stern! While you are picking up the jaw from the deck, you note the schooner is already in neutral waters, and the fishermen perhaps are showing you their asses from afar. And you stand and silently wince, sort of like becouse of an anger, but in fact, delighted with what you saw!

Why am I telling all this? Personally, I was always fascinated by the dedication with which the Special operation forcies of DPRK are at war. They conduct their war against the enemies rigidly and without compromise. Despite the fact that their country, since the fifties, is under sanctions, the Koreans do not whine, do not let snot and drool, but continue to live and struggle in these hard conditions!

The international cooperation

Another important factor in the work of the special services of the DPRK is cooperation with the countries of the allies - the PRC, Iran, Cuba. When I met Ri Eong Sok in 1988, he flew from Cuba, where he spent two years training the security service of Fidel Castro.

Among other things, the Korean comrades helped to create Cuban ultra-small submarines for combat swimmers, as well as semi-submerged speedboats. They also helped in re-equipping civilian ships with lock chambers and devices for towing ultra-small submarines.

A separate line is the cooperation of North Koreans with the special services of Iran. They helped the Iranians to create a school of combat swimmers-saboteurs in the region of Pahlavi on the Caspian coast. This school belongs to the Department of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and their activities are supervised at the IRGC intelligence headquarters in Pahlavi.

Also there are North Korean instructors in the Iranian school of combat swimmers in Bender Abbas. There are ultra-small submarines based on Korean boats of the Sang-O type, speed boats, and also three submarines of the class "Varshavyanka" of Soviet production are based at the school.

Let me remind you again, these guys are related to the department of the General Staff of the DPRK.

Instead of concluding

In the next article, I will dwell in detail on the activities of the political intelligence of the Central Committee of the DPRK Labor Party. By the way, very small in its structure, but the very influential.

In conclusion, I want to once again draw your attention to the fact that in terms of the qualifications and capabilities of the combat units mentioned, I express my own point of view. And if I say that I admire the actions of the Special operation forcies of DPRK, then this is my sincere opinion. It just happened that fate brought me together with the best representatives of the DPRK special forces, and I'm proud of it!

Rainer Hausser. (Kurt Mayer)

April 14, 2017