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SHROUDED IN SECRECY due to the covert nature of their work, the legendary Recces have fascinated South Africans for years. Now one of these elite soldiers has written a tell-all book about the extraordinary missions he embarked on and the nail-biting action he experienced in the Border War.

Shortly after passing the infamously gruelling Special Forces selection course in the early 1980s, Koos Stadler joined the so-called Small Teams group at 5 Reconnaissance Regiment. This subunit was made up of two-man teams and was responsible for numerous secret and highly dangerous missions deep behind enemy lines. With only one team member, Stadler was sent to blow up railway lines and enemy fighter jets in the south of Angola. As he crawled in and out of enemy-infested territory, he stared death in the face many times.

A gripping, firsthand account that reveals the near superhuman physical and psychological powers these Special Forces operators have to display.

List of abbreviations

List of abbreviations

ALO — air liaison officer

CO — candidate officer

CSI — Chief of Staff Intelligence

DR — dead reckoning

DZ — drop zone

E&E — escape and evasion

ECCM — electronic counter-counter-measures

ECM — electronic counter-measures

EMLC — electrical, mechanical, agricultural and chemical engineering consultants

FAPLA — For?as Armadas Populares de Liberta??o Angola (People’s Armed Forces for the Liberation of Angola)

FNLA — Frente Nacional de Liberta??o Angola (National Front for the Liberation of Angola)

HAG — helicopter administrative area

HF — high frequency

LP — listening post

LZ — landing zone

MK — Umkhonto we Sizwe

MPLA — Movimento Popular de Liberta??o de Angola (Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola)

NCO — non-commissioned officer

OAU — Organization of African Unity

OC — officer commanding

OP — observation post

PLAN — People’s Liberation Army of Namibia

PT — physical training

RPG — rocket-propelled grenade

RSM — regimental sergeant major

RV — rendezvous

SADF — South African Defence Force

SAM — surface-to-air missile

SOPs — standard operating procedures

SWAPO — South West Africa People’s Organisation

TB — temporary base

UN — United Nations

UNITA — Uni?o Nacional para a Independ?ncia Total de Angola (Union for the Total Independence of Angola)

UNTAG — United Nations Transition Assistance Group

VHF — very high frequency

ZNDF — Zambia National Defence Force

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