They are the most secretive and mysterious forces in the United States military. They are the brave men who take on the dangerous and unconventional missions no one else wants. They are America's elite warriors, the more than 40,000 members of the U.S. special operations forces - the Green Berets, the Navy SEALs, the Air Force commandos, the psychological operations experts, and Delta Force. Here, for the first time, is the real story behind the military's toughest, best-trained soldiers. Newsweek journalist Douglas C. Waller was given unprecedented access to the special training that commandos receive. To observe Green Beret instruction, Waller camped out with Army Special Forces soldiers for two weeks in a cold, rainy February. For an inside look at Air Force special operations, he put on a flight suit, a helmet, and night-vision goggles and flew with the pilots as they practiced weaving through the mountains in pitch-black darkness. He reveals the secret selection and training of Delta Force counterterrorist commandos. And, the first outsider ever given total access to Hell Week, he details the five days of grueling, nonstop commando training that Navy men must endure to become SEALs (sea-air-land commandos). Based on interviews with hundreds of special operations soldiers, The Commandos takes the reader behind the veil of official secrecy that surrounds these forces to examine how they really fight and live. Waller also discloses for the first time ever the details of some of the secret forces' operations such as the commandos' secret planning to assassinate Saddam Hussein during the Gulf War; the behind-the-scenes political battles of their generals to launch covert operations inIraq and Kuwait; the commando raids, clandestine infiltrations, and daring combat behind enemy lines during the Gulf War; their war to psych out Saddam and his army; and Delta Force's dangerous hunt for Saddam's Scud missiles. With the Cold War over, surgical operations and low-intensity conflicts may be America's battles of the future. If so, special operations commandos may well be the warriors of the future. This is their story.