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Silent Assassins

             He freezes his body as a Viet Cong soldier walks merely feet away from him. The body suit, which he constructed of grass and leaves, disguises him from a whole regiment of Viet Cong soldiers. He creeps slowly: only as much as the wind blows the grass. He gazes about looking for the enemy; the enemy, for him. Over a three day period he advances only 1000 meters through the hostile territory toward the enemy. On the third day, he is in position to make his shot. He eliminates the target and flees quickly. He is a Marine Corps sniper and he has just completed an extremely dangerous, covert mission.
             College can be very tough to pay for without any financial aid. Athletic scholarships, academic scholarships, the military- all can pay for one's college education. If I hadn't received a full tuition scholarship to Southwest Missouri State I probably would have joined the Marines and attempted to become a sniper. Although a career in the military is no longer necessary for me to pay for college, I am still very interested in this subject. Through my research, I have learned that Marine Corps snipers besides putting their lives on the line, they must meet many qualifications, must undergo extensive training, and levelheaded during while under an enormous amount of pressure. I received this information through previous knowledge, and through magazine articles from Marine Magazine. In addition, I obtained information from personal interviews with two Marine Corps snipers. .
             The qualifications for snipers are difficult to pass. First, a sniper trainee must have perfect 20/20 vision or correctable 20/20 with contacts. Glasses are too much of a liability and are not permitted. Smokers or users of tobacco also are not allowed. The cough of a smoker can reveal the position of a hidden sniper and the abstaining from smoking on mission can cause nervousness which lower efficiency (FM 23-10).

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