First female Special Forces candidate washes out, sources say

A Special Forces Assessment and Selection candidate conducts training at the Nasty Nick obstacle course Camp Mackall in Hoffman, N.C., September 2009. (U.S. Army photo by Capt. David Chace/Released)

The first female Special Forces candidate has washed out of the Army’s initial training program to get into the legendary Green Berets.

According to The Washington Times, the female soldier (who has not been identified by name) had reported to the US Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg, North Carolina on the 2nd of September and had outlasted 10-15% of her initial classmates during the 21-day initial training process.

However, sources operating under the condition of anonymity say she did not complete the “Land Navigation” phase, having dropped out for either forced, voluntary or medical  reasons. Pending a review board, she may attempt the course again.

While the news of the female candidate washing out comes as little surprise to many military personnel, it may not be for the reasons you think- historically, only one out of three candidates finish the entire course.

“An average class is 300 candidates, with a 10-15 percent attrition rate after the physical fitness assessment. The total attrition rate at the end of SFAS is 60 percent,” warfare center spokeswoman Maj. Melody Faulkenberry said in a July interview regarding female officer candidates invited to SFAS.

Army officials are remaining tight-lipped on the matter, refusing to confirm or deny even the fact that a female was attending SFAS. All that is known is that whoever “she” is, she had to have attended Airborne school, as all Special Forces candidates must be Airborne qualified.

The news of a female candidate washing out of Special Forces training comes on the heels of reports from earlier this month about the failure of the first woman to try out for the 75th Ranger regiment, America’s elite shock troops who specialize in raids, airfield captures and short-notice deployments.

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  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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