The 75th Ranger Regiment are specialists at quick and decisive strike
missions. Totaling three battalions of approximately 2,000 men,
these elite troops are typically used to launch raids, seize airfields,
conduct ambushes and perform other light infantry missions after
quietly inserting themselves behind enemy lines via parachute or
Their origins actually trace back to 1670 when Captain Benjamin
Church's Rangers successfully fought Indian tribes during a bloody
conflict in New England known as "King Phillip's War."
Most notably, Major Robert Rogers formed nine companies of Rangers
from American frontiersmen to fight for the British during the French
and Indian War in 1756. Ranger tactics were common at the time,
but Maj. Rogers was the first to formalize their organization and
create standards. Although Ranger tactics used informally by various
units during the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, Rangers did not come
to prominence again until World War II. Desiring an equivalent to
British Commandos, the US Army formed the 1st Ranger Battalion,
under the command of Major William Darby, in June 1942. Imposing
a tough and realistic training regimen, including dangerous live
fire exercises, Darby's Rangers spearheaded the invasion into North
Africa. Later, other Ranger battalions were formed and companies
of the 2nd Ranger Battalion made the most dangerous attack on Omaha
Beach during D-Day with an attack on the cliffs of Point Du Hoc.
Although there were no active Ranger Battalions during the Korean
and Vietnam wars, elements of Ranger companies formed Long Range
Reconnaissance Patrols for other army units. Their experiences created
what is today the U.S. Army Ranger School at Fort Benning, Ga. It
wasn't until 1974 that Ranger Battalions were formally reactivated,
seeing action in Desert One (the failed hostage-rescue attempt in
Iran), Grenada, Panama and Desert Storm.
To join a Ranger Battalion, you typically have to be airborne qualified
and go through a three-week evaluation called the Ranger Indoctrination
Program where you will pass a variety of physical tests like a 10-mile
road march and run five miles better than an 8-minuite mile pace.
Many NCOs and officers attend the arduous 61-day Ranger School.
Like other Special Operations units, they are experts at working
at night with latest in night-vision equipment. They are well trained
and highly motivated. Their motto: "Rangers Lead the Way."