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Royal Thai Navy SEALs
Royal Thai Navy Seals Emblem
Royal Thai Navy Seal insignia
Country Flag of Thailand.svg Thailand
Branch Flag of the Royal Thai Navy Royal Thai Navy
Service history
Active 1956-present
Role Intelligence-gathering,
Reconnaissance missions,
Direct Action,
Unconventional Warfare
and Counter-Terrorism
Size 144
Part of Royal Thai Armed Forces

The Underwater Demolition Assault Unit (UDAU)[1] of the Royal Thai Navy (Thai language: หน่วยทำลายใต้น้ำจู่โจม) is a 144-man special operations force within the Military of Thailand. The unit is colloquially also known as the Royal Thai Navy SEALs (Thai: หน่วยซีล), the Thai language word for Seals[2] as in the pinniped animals. Although this title was influenced by the US unit, it is not an acronym like the American unit's.

The unit was set up in 1956 with the assistance of the U.S. Government and has trained with United States Navy SEALs it predates. A small element within the Royal Thai Navy's "seal" unit has been trained to conduct Maritime Counter-Terrorism missions. This unit has close ties with the U.S. Navy's own SEAL teams.


US Navy 080818-N-3392B-001 A Royal Thai Navy SEAL heads toward the bridge of the Military Sealift Command Marine Corps container roll-on-roll-off ship USNS Cpl. Louis J. Hauge, Jr. (T-AK 3011)

This Royal Thai UDAU is part of a six-man group boarding a container ship during the annual Southeast Asia Cooperation Against Terrorism (SEACAT) exercises, 2008.

During World War II, Navy troops fighting for both the Axis and Allies used special warfare forces. They were small elite groups of soldiers trained to destroy ships, buildings, and other strategic locations as well as conduct sabotage and other clandestine missions. After the war finished, the special warfare mission continued and through improved training and equipment, increased the ability of the military to fight using new tactics to achieve missions previously unthinkable.

In 1952, the Thai Ministry of Defence started thinking about organizing Underwater Demolition Teams. Representatives of the Thai Ministry of Defense met with officers from the United States Military Assistance Advisory Group to discuss the possibility of training. Based on the meetings, a resolution was passed directing the Royal Thai Navy to set up training for the unit but unfortunately at the time there were not enough instructors from the United States to make the project happen and so it was temporarily put on hold.

In 1953, Sea Supply, a CIA front company, was tasked with supporting the initial training of the Royal Thai Navy's Underwater Demolition Team and also the Royal Thai Police Aerial Reinforcement Unit. The first group to take part in the UDT/SEAL training included seven Thai Naval Officers and eight members of the Royal Thai Police. This training started on March 4, 1953 on 'Z island (ZULU)'. After 61 days, only 15 of the recruits successfully passed the training.

In 1956 the Royal Thai Navy formed a small combat diver unit, based on the U.S. Navy's Underwater Demolition Teams. In 1965 the unit was reorganized. It was expanded and divided into two separate platoons, with a U.S. Navy Mobile Training Team providing assistance. The first group was organized into a Sea, Air and Land, or Seal team. The second group formed a UDT. The Seal team was assigned intelligence-gathering, special and unconventional warfare, assassination and Special reconnaissance missions.[3]

In 2008, the Royal Thai Navy's special warfare units (Seal team) have been raised to "Royal Thai Naval Special Warfare Command" in order to increase the unit size and its capability for dealing with any future threats.

Selection & TrainingEdit

Training courses in a raid to destroy the submarine. Recruits go through training lasting 7–8 months, it is very similar to the U.S. this includes a 'hell week' where individual and team stamina and fitness are vigorously tested, less 30% of initial recruits are able to pass the final training. The destruction of underwater assault course (Frog) is a program of naval special forces training course takes seven months of resistance training, which is the longest in the Royal Thai Armed Forces. The training is divided into five major periods of training:

  • The first is an introduction to the training and preparation of initial training takes about 3 weeks to introduce a training exercise by the science and sport. Running, swimming, carrying timber, rubber boats, backpacks, sand, crossing obstacles, etc.
  • During the second period of training alone. It is not recommended practice as recommended in the beginning so it takes approximately 6 weeks.
  • During the third week, the training is 120 hours or five days and nights without sleeping, and then asked to practice what they trained for five days and nights. It is suggested that the first thing to pass this week is Announcements at school.
  • The development of a knowledge that should be known as Special Forces. Diving, shooting, bombing, reconnaissance, etc..
  • During the final phase of training in the mountains and forests, the sea takes about two months to practice.

Upon successful completion of the course, the candidate will be decorated with a badge on the left chest and the Navy will be the gauntlet every month. Designed by Lieutenant Colonel of badge green glass components have the following meanings:

  • Shark, white or blue. The Masters of the Sea feral grace formidable stamina.
  • The fear of the sea waves are waves all the time. Or barrier breaker But it's not fear sharks.
  • A naval anchor in the program must be made by the Navy only. But in the current climate, and military police are military as well. Flag means to sacrifice to the pagan king.

Operational DeploymentsEdit

Most of the operations the Thai Seals are sent on are highly sensitive and are rarely divulged to the public. However, it is thought that the Thai Seals have been involved in a number of skirmishes along the Cambodian border, and in anti-piracy operations in the Gulf of Thailand. The Thai UDT/Seals have participated in salvage and rescue operations, and have supported RTMC training exercises. They were also thought to have been used to gather intelligence during period of heightened tensions along Thailand's border. In December 1978, for example, recon teams were sent to the Mekong River during skirmishes with the Pathet Lao. The Pathet Lao was a communist, nationalist political movement and organization in Laos. The Royal Thai Seals have recently been sent to the Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia to undertake in anti-piracy operations,They have been noted to work closely with the CIA Paramilitary Unit Leader in Asean code name(PL).


OriginSmall ArmModel
Flag of Germany.png Germany Heckler & Koch G36 G36KV
Flag of Germany.png Germany Heckler & Koch UMP UMP 9
Flag of Germany.png Germany Heckler & Koch MP5 MP5SD,MP5K
Flag of Germany.png Germany Heckler & Koch HK21 HK23E
Flag of Germany.png Germany Heckler & Koch PSG1 PSG-1,MSG 90
United States KAC SR-25 SR25
United States Barrett M82 M82
United States Barrett M95 M95
United States Bushmaster M4 M4A3 SOPMOD
Flag of Switzerland.svg  Switzerland SIG 516 SIG-516

See alsoEdit


  1. Oxford-River Books English-Thai Dictionary. Publisher:Oxford
  2. Oxford-River Books English-Thai Dictionary. Publisher:Oxford
  3. Thailand: Royal Thai Navy Seals-->

External linksEdit

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