Numerous news websites have recently reported that SAS troops have been strictly prohibited from growing beards prior to deploying on military operations, we can reveal. The rather sudden ruling was put into order by the elite unit’s Regimental Sergeant Major following a stint of complaints in regards to the standards during a VIP visit to the SAS’s Headquarters.
Now SAS troops have been ordered to be strictly clean shaven at all times, and to make sure that the hair on their head is also kept at regulated length and style as and when they are stationed within the United Kingdom.
The elite soldiers may grow out their beards and wear their hair at longer lengths if it helps to aid them with the local communities when taking part in secret operations in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. While dress code rules are often adjustable on operations, senior commanders have now ruled that they should not be ignored when SAS troops are stationed on their home turf, England.
The new final ruling came into play when a senior foreign special forces officer was visiting the regiment’s HQ in Hereford, England, and he had commented on the fact that more soldiers than not were choosing to wear some form of facial hair. The BC accompanying the foreign soldier was said to be deeply embarrassed by such comments and allegedly described some of the SAS soldiers as looking like “vagrants”, So, in other words suggesting they resembled the homeless. A bit harsh, right?
It is understood that the Director of Special Forces, the soldier in charge of the SAS, the SBS, and the Special Reconnaissance Regiment, was sharply advised that the troops had to no exception and must follow the same dress code standards as the rest of the Army. The unit’s Sergeant Major - often regarded as the most powerful soldier within the SAS has since ruled that all its troops must follow the Army’s standard dress code and has banned beards indefinitely.
The RSM also ruled that all members of the regiment must wear the British Army uniform, including the SAS sand-coloured beret and blue stable belt when in the barracks. It is believed the new rules have pissed off many 'squaddies' behind closed doors, with some reportedly questioning as to why they were advised in the first place. Afterall, does a man's choice to grow a beard effect his ability to be a SAS troop? Some might even question if it's not a conflict on a man's human rights and standing.
One unnamed veteran officer said that the SAS always stood out on military bases during his time in Iraq and Afghanistan because they were the only soldiers who were at the time permitted to grow facial hair and longer than usual beards. He reportedly went onto say - “The beard thing began in the early days of Afghan back in 2006, when the soldiers were living in such harsh conditions that they couldn’t afford to waste time and water by shaving. Now it has become the easiest way to identify a member of the special forces - it’s as if they are saying 'Look at us! We’re the special forces!”
I'm into minds on the recent ruling, of course, I'm going to be somewhat biased being a bearded gentleman myself. But for me, it comes down to a person's personal choice on if the individual should decide to grow out some facial hair, and I don't agree in rules that stop a person for doing so.
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And until next time, Beard on Brothers...