Special Operations Command (Brazil)

The Brazilian Special Operations Command (Portuguese: Comando de Operações Especiais - C Op Esp) is a part of the Brazilian Army Commands, specifically the Land Army Command.[1] Headquartered in Central Brazil, in Goiânia, C OP ESP is positioned under the larger Planalto Military Command.[1] Specifically, it is linked to the Terrestrial Operations Command (COTER[1]). Its motto is "any mission, in any place, at any time, by every way".[2]

Special Operations Command
Comando de Operações Especiais
Coat of arms of the Special Operations Command
ActiveJune 27, 2002; 21 years ago (2002-06-27)
Country Brazil
TypeSpecial Forces
Part of Brazilian Army
Nickname(s)C Op Esp
Current CommanderBrig.Gen. Mauro Sinott Lopes

Creation edit

C Op Esp was established in 1957 as a parachute rescue group that conducted deep forest rescue operations.[3] Special operations were then disbanded for much of the 20th century, but in 2003, the Presidential Decree No. 4.289 created the Special Operations Brigade that Brazil employs today.[1] In 2013, the ordinance of Army Commander 142 changed the brigade's designation to Special Operations Command (C Op Esp).[1]

Missions and capabilities edit

The Special Operations Brigade originally traces its roots back to 1957. Originally, they were a parachute trained rescue team that conducted deep forest rescues. Today C Op Esp is a highly specialized and dynamic fighting force that operates all over Brazil. C Op Esp is trained in non conventional warfare, which means it is ready for any type of fight, against any fighting force.[4] C Op Esp is trained to deal with much larger forces, they typically operate in small teams.[4]

The C Op Esp uses a number of strategies to eliminate its enemies capabilities. Deploying its forces deep in enemy territory, including to the very rear of the enemy, is one of the many strategies C Op Esp employs.[4]

1st Special Forces Battalion troops in a 2018 CQB exercise

Some of C Op Esp's top level capabilities include; covert reconnaissance on the battlefield, the ability to perform search, destruction, neutralization and interdiction of targets of significant value, perform guided air strikes, rescue allies and high value targets, kidnap enemy personnel, and conduct operations classified as non conventional warfare.[4]

One of C Op Esp's most valuable capabilities is the ability to deter and destroy guerilla groups. C Op Esp has dealt with guerilla groups before, and is specially trained to move the group into a larger fighting force such as the Brazilian Army. This strategy in turn leads to the destruction of the guerrilla group.[4]

Another valuable capability that C Op Esp excels in is counterinsurgency and counterterrorism. Operations of this type include; rescuing hostages of any type, neutralization of explosives and other weapons used by terrorists, monitoring and spying on terrorist groups.[4]

The C Op Esp is the main arm of the Rapid Action Force which is supplemented by the following units: Brigade Parachute Infantry, 12th Light Infantry Brigade (Aeromovel) and the Army Aviation Squadron.[1] The Rapid Action Force is a national force, capable of operating in the Amazon as well as the Pampas in the south.[1] Equipped with the most technologically advanced equipment available to the Brazilian Military, the Rapid Action Force is proficient in land, water, and air operations.[1]

During MINUSTAH, a force of around 20 men from the 1st Special Forces Battalion and 1st Commando Actions Battalion made up the Destacamento de Operações de Paz (Peace Operations Detachment) or Dopaz, a special operations unit responsible for high-risk missions such as special reconnaissance and direct action against leaderships of Haitian gangs and paramilitary groups, as well as leading the UN raids on neighbourhoods such as Bel Air, Cité Militaire and Cité Soleil from 2005 to 2007.[5] According to Brazilian SF General Sergio Schwingel, Dopaz's role in Haiti led to the UN creating a doctrine for the usage of special forces in peacekeeping operations worldwide.[5][6][7]

Recently, Brazilian Special Forces have taken part in domestic and international operations.[8][6] During the 2016 Rio Olympics, Brazilian Special forces provided security teams for events, and conducted covert operations in order to thwart any possible attacks on the games. These domestic operations were conducted by the special operations police force of the Brazilian Military.[8] Special forces played a key role in the 2018 federal intervention. Troops collected arrests and deaths of criminals.

Structure edit

Location of Goiania, Brazil.

COpEsp is structured by the following subordinate units:[9]

  • 1st Special Forces Battalion (1º BFEsp)
  • 1st Commando Actions Battalion (1º BAC)
  • 1st Battalion of Psychological Operations (1° BOpPsc)
  • 3rd Special Forces Company (3ª Cia FEsp)
  • Special Operations Support Battalion (B Ap OpEsp)
  • Administrative Base of the Special Operations Command (B Adm COpEsp)
  • Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defense Company (Cia DQBRN)
  • 6th Army Police Platoon (6° Pel PE)

Gallery edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "COPESP - Institucional". www.copesp.eb.mil.br (in Brazilian Portuguese). Retrieved 2017-04-06.
  2. ^ "7th Special Forces train with Brazilian team". www.army.mil. Retrieved 2017-04-10.
  3. ^ "brigada". 2013-09-26. Archived from the original on 2013-09-26. Retrieved 2017-04-06.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Joint Publication 3-05 Special Operations" (PDF). July 16, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 4, 2011.
  5. ^ a b "Dopaz: conheça a tropa de elite que o Brasil levou para pacificar as favelas violentas do Haiti" (in Portuguese). g1. 20 September 2017. Retrieved 19 April 2023.
  6. ^ a b "Brazil deployed nearly 5,000 people to assist Haiti after hurricane". BrazilGovNews. Retrieved 2017-04-06.
  7. ^ "Endgame for Brazil's Role in MINUSTAH?". Retrieved 2017-04-07.
  8. ^ a b "Take a walk through Brazil's dangerous slums with the nation's elite police force". Business Insider. Retrieved 2017-04-06.
  9. ^ "COPESP - Institucional". www.copesp.eb.mil.br (in Brazilian Portuguese). Retrieved 2017-04-06.

External links edit