[Video] U.S. Special Forces Hostage Rescue Demo in Downtown Tampa

This is how U.S. Special Forces would cope with a hostage rescue situation.

On May 21, the United States Special forces performed a public demonstration of their tactics used in a hostage rescue situation in Downtown Tampa as part of the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference.

In an Act of Valor-like scenario, the demo gave the public the opportunity to see a Special Operation unfold in the channel behind the Tampa Convention Center supported by 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) “Night Stalkers” MH-60s and MH-6Ms helicopters.

160th SOAR is the U.S. Army special ops force which provides support for both general purpose and special operations forces flying MH-47G Chinooks, MH-60L/K Black Hawks, A/MH-6M Little Birds choppers and, since Dec. 2013, MQ-1C Gray Eagle drones, (along with MH-X Silent Hawks involved in the Osama Bin Laden raid possibly along with some stealthy Chinooks and, maybe, some stealthy Little Birds).

The above video was produced pro-bono by Right Hand Films for the benefit of the City of Tampa in honor of Memorial Day 2014 “and as a dedication to the men and women who have lost their lives defending our country, whom we honor this memorial day.”

H/T to Al Major for the heads-up


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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. Just watched more of this event on YouTube. I saw Canadian and Australian special forces also participated in the demonstration. Very impressive. It also appears this display is performed in conjunction with the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference. Here is the demo from 2012

  2. Call it as you want, but begging people for money and entertaining kids, is not exactly something “military” and I can tell you not even professional.

    • Wow, you must not like airshows either. You know, airshows that virtually every country with a military does including your beloved Russia? Marco, do you have to post some silly negative comment on every video involving the US? Get over it dude.

  3. Cause they aren’t showing anybody anything of value. You can find the same thing a million places on YouTube. Even civilians these days know what basic room-clearing operations look like. They may not know the finer points but most know “hey, they are clearing that room” if you see it on TV. Same goes for fast-roping/ziplining, and the equipment (for the most part) that are used.

    The strength of these units is in each individual operator’s ability to think and experience. So long as certain pieces of equipment werent used (think NODs used in the movie about killing Bin Laden. Those were for Tier 1 units only and wholly unknown outside the SOCOM/JSOC community until that SEAL wrote his book) they could show a ton of footage of them training and it still wouldn’t give a possible enemy any clue what they’re capable of.

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