OK, don't pay attention to Timboy. He is probably not a Ranger or in the Special Forces. I doubt he's even in the military.
SF soldiers are called upon to accomplish a wide variety of unconventional missions. Most importantly, the SF soldier serves in the roles of teacher and helper, as well as warrior.
SF plan, conduct, and support special operations in all operational environments. The U.S. Army organizes, trains, equips, and provides SF to perform seven primary
missions: unconventional warfare, foreign internal defense, direct action, special reconnaissance, counterproliferation, information warfare/command and control warfare, and counterterrorism. (Counterterrorism is a primary mission only for designated and specially organized, trained, and equipped units.) In addition to the seven primary missions, SF may participate in any of several collateral activities: security assistance, humanitarian assistance, coalition liaison, counterdrug activities, personnel recovery, and countermine activities.
Special Forces and Rangers are both Special Operations Units, and they both fall under the U.S. Special Operations Command, but they (obviously you know this) vary in mission and serve distinct purposes.
Let me tell you a joke I once heard. It's an unrealistic scenario and a total exaggeration, but funny and humorously true, none-the-less:
OK, so there is a hostage situation. Bad guys have taken over a building somewhere in the Middle East, and they are holding hostage of several U.S. Diplomats. General Joe, in charge of planning the rescue mission, was asked whether he wanted to send in the SF or the Rangers to save the hostages, and the General replied:
OK, so, if we send in the SF, we will first have to find a fancy hotel for them to set up their operations in the area. We will need to give them time to grow out their beards, and give them money to buy clothes that and vehicles that blend in to the environment. We will also need to take a month to practice the hostage rescue scenario in a replica building, making sure each SF Soldier knows his job and his part of the mission to perfection. So, in the end, it will take months to plan the mission and to equip and train the men, but the mission will be a total success, all of the hostages will be freed, and all the bad guys will die.
Then, he said, if we send in the Rangers, we'll have a rapid reaction force there within 24 hours. We will give them weapons and ammo. They will storm the building, kill all the bad guys. There will be friendly fire incidents and one or two of the hostages will die; some of the men will be wounded, but it will be an overall mission success.
Keep in mind, I'm not trying to poke fun at either group. They are both elite forces, and if any SF or Rangers are reading this, sorry for the humor if it offended you. =)
I hope this helps!
Answered By: Name - 1/6/2008