Local News

Fort Bragg Soldiers Learn Martial Arts

Posted March 25, 1998

— Special Forces Soldiers are trained to use the most modern and powerful weapons.

However, the members of the 2nd Battalion, 7th Special Forces group are learning an ancient form of fighting, martial arts.

Tony Blauer, a world renown martial arts expert, arrived at the base today.

The Canadian instructor is visiting Fort Bragg to show these special forces soldiers the art of hand to hand combat.

The last thing soldiers want to do in a peace keeping mission is pull out their guns. " This training gives them a non-lethal option," Blauer said.

"If you can contain and control it without killing someone, isn't that what we are supposed to do," Blauer said.

Blauer is teaching The 7th Special Forces Group a form called "combatitives", which is an emotionally and behaviorally based system.

The system allows soldiers to diffuse a situation verbally, not physically.

A member of the Special Forces Group, John Hiavacek said, "If you are ready for anything to happen, it leaves you a way out."

Martial arts present a way to respect human rights in a situation that can get out of control, such as a food give-a-way.

John Cavedo, another special forces member, said, "I was in Haiti for six months and had numerous crowds that approached my personal space, and were right on top of me. Had I known this, I think I would have felt a lot more confident."

Blauer said that this confidence can prevent a violent end to a Humanitarian Mission.

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