BOCA RATON – With the opening today of the movie “Act of Valor,” about a Navy SEAL squad that goes on a covert operation to rescue a kidnapped CIA officer, Dr. William A. Saxton is hoping it becomes a huge hit, and introduces millions of Americans to what the Navy SEALs do.
He expects that’s exactly what’s going to happen, because ever since Monday, May 2 – when a Navy SEAL team killed Osama bin Laden, the head of al-Qaeda in Pakistan — — interest in the United States special operations military unit has soared.
“It’s huge,” Saxton said. “People are very interested. Now there’s a movie out called ‘Act of Valor,’ which is all about the SEALs. It’s a topic nationally that intrigues people. I personally know SEALs, I know a lot of them, and though it turns out that my own military career was in the Army, nevertheless I have a lot of respect for the Navy SEALs and what they do.”
Saxton hopes that interest builds up in South Florida in particular, and that residents turn out for a special event on Sunday, March 11 that will offer a unique inside look at the elite commando unit, what they do, and how they’re working to combat national security threats and terrorism.
“The major contributing factor to this is the more people know about issues of national security, whether it’s the SEALs or not or bin Laden or not, we need to educate the people on this issue of our nation being threatened by extremists,” Saxton said. “That’s why we formed this organization. We think in the long run, the public will be the ones who save this country.”
Saxton is the chairman of an organization based in Boca Raton called Citizens For National Security. It’s a non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)(3) public charity committed to raising the public’s awareness of, and educating Americans about, what the organization sees as the full range of national security threats to this nation from Islamists, other extremist ideologies and rogue nations.
CFNS “draws on the extensive and unmatched experience of its founders and its well-honed research capability to develop, assemble and present only accurate, reliable and objective data about the goals, activities and supporters of anti-U.S. movements,” the organization notes in its press material. “Free of any partisan affiliation, sponsorship or agenda, CFNS focuses on providing the credible information that ordinary citizens can use in deciding for themselves how best to enhance our national security.”
One way they educate the public, Saxton said, is through ongoing public seminars.
“We put on a series of seminars and workshops, in the interest of national security,” he said. “We’re dedicated to motivating people to become active in issues related to national security. We’ve done a lot about radical Islam. We’ve done seminars on Chinese espionage. We’ve done seminars showing people how to protect themselves in air travel.”
The next one puts a focus on the Navy SEALs. In fact, CFNS hopes to provide an in-depth look into the inner workings of the Navy SEALs on Sunday, March 11 at the Marriott at Boca Center in Boca Raton. Titled “Inside the Navy SEALs,” the seminar’s guest speaker will be Lt. Hector J. Delgado, a Navy SEAL and board member of the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum.
Lt. Delgado has been a SEAL team member for more than two decades, having served with SEAL Team 3 on a combat tour in Iraq, as well as SEAL Teams 2, 3, 4, and 18 in tours of duty in the Middle East, Europe, and South America. He’s also the recipient of a Navy Commendation Medal with Combat “V,” and has trained SEALs and thousands of students in the use of weapons, demolition, physical security, and executive protection.
Lt. Delgado will use the seminar to trace the origins of the SEALs with the Scouts and Raiders, Naval Combat Demolition Units, Office of Strategic Services Operational Swimmers, Underwater Demolition Teams, and Motor Torpedo Boat Squadrons of World War II. He’ll also focus on current SEAL operations and the unique capabilities of its teams.
“It’s really going to be great,” said Kate Russell of RMR & Associates Inc., the media firm that’s helping to promote the event for CFNS. “The speaker has 24 years of experience with the SEALs.”
Saxton said he was thrilled to have the opportunity to allow a distinguished member of the Navy SEALs to make a presentation on behalf of his organization.
“Obviously the issue of the SEALs is very much consistent with our objectives to protect people in the area of national security,” he said, adding that his decision to book Delgado dates back to the mission to bring down bin Laden.
“It was shortly after the bin Laden takedown,” he said. “One of the things we do for our members is we send them very regularly, on average about once a week, what we call Gray Literature. Gray Literature is information that is unclassified, but is not generally known by the public or available to us. We get it in the course of our day jobs. We’re actively involved currently in the national security environment, and we get this information and we circulate it to our members on a regular basis. We call it ‘document briefings,’ and we sent out one of these briefings to our members on the Navy SEALs.”
That mailing, he said, produced a strong response.
“We got a lot of questions back from these guys – ‘How do they operate’ and so on,” he said. “It was at that point that I contacted Lt. Delgado, who I knew was involved in the National SEALs Museum in south Florida.”
The National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum, Birthplace of the Navy Frogmen, is in Fort Pierce, Florida, and can be reached by calling 760-634-1837.
“We knew several people who were involved with the museum, and I contacted them and said ‘Hey, how about a seminar on the Navy SEALs,’ ” Saxton said. “The more people know about organizations like the SEALs and see we’re mobilizing against extremists, the better. The SEALs are very modest about their elitism, and that’s inspirational.”
He also hopes these seminars inspire Americans to take a stronger interest in the threats posed to this nation by terrorist organizations worldwide.
“When the attempts to overtake our lives come to fruition on September 11, 2001” — the date of the terrorist attacks by al-Qaeda against the World Trade Center building in New York City and the pentagon building in Washington — “9-11 wasn’t the end of it,” Saxton said. “9-11 was the beginning of it. This is a constant battle.”
The registration fee for the March 11 event is a $35 tax-deductible donation per person, which includes refreshments, parking, and handout materials. To register and pay online, log on to https://cfns.us/CFNS-Seminar.php, or download a registration form at https://cfns.us/files/seminar_form_2.pdf and mail it along with payment to Citizens For National Security, P.O. Box 880302, Boca Raton, FL, 33488.
To learn more about CFNS, visit www.CFNS.US.
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