Cuba’s Comando Tropas Especiales (CTE), is a special forces group that specializes in jungle warfare. They have seen combat action in Angola and other African nations as well as in several Central American countries (including Nicaragua). The group has been training for infiltrations, commando operations, special sniper operations (which Castro was particularly proud of), biowarfare, cyber warfare, and espionage. These soldiers are trained to operate in small independent units, capable of locating high value and strategic targets and delivering accurate firepower.
History & Training
In the mid 1980’s Cuba established a Special Troops military training school in Los Palacios, Cuba. It is commonly referred to as “Baragua” school, and is situated in a large valley near the Pinar del Rio mountains. The training camp is known for being very large, consists of several artificial lakes, and very modern training technology.
The school was founded by the de la Guardia brothers. The special troop school usually has a consistent flow of 2500 soldiers in training. Special troop advisors from China and Vietnam have been known to assist the training cadre.
In the Baragua School, troops are training to perform unconventional warfare, direct action, special reconnaissance, and psychological operations. They willa lso receive training in freefall parachuting, underwater operations, target interdiction, strategic reconnaissance, and intelligence operations.
Having traveled all all over the world, they have amassed quite an eclectic armory. They have been seen with Stechkin pistols, Colt M1911 , Garand and Springfield rifles, post-Batista FN FALs, newer FN CALs, M-16s, (some with M-203 grenade launchers and sniper scopes), Spanish Z-84 SMGs or even Barnett Commando crossbows.
They also use the PM-63 RAK SMG as their main assault weapon along with the old soviet 5.45mm AKSU-74 (AKR) sub-assault rifle and have also been seen with the Polish immobilizing net launchers (SZO-84).