Alaska is home to thousands of active duty military personnel and has the highest per capita population of veterans in the entire country. In an effort to build on Alaska’s relationship with the military, Governor Mike Dunleavy sent a letter to United States Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro this week, inviting the Navy to expand its training operations for Navy SEALS in Alaska. The letter follows a recent Washington state court ruling preventing Navy SEALS from using up to 28 parks in Washington state for training exercises.
In the letter to Secretary Del Toro Governor Dunleavy wrote, “If the Navy Seals seek cold water, extreme tidal changes, multi-variant currents, low visibility, complex underwater terrain, climate and rigorous land terrain to conduct their special operations exercises, we invite you to come North to Opportunity.”
The U.S. Navy already operates the Naval Special Warfare Center on Kodiak Island, a site which is ideal for cold weather training in sub-arctic conditions. Alaska has more coastline than the other 49 states combined, and offers a variety of climatic and ocean conditions that will create even greater training opportunities for the Navy’s elite special forces.