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How to Become a CIA Paramilitary

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June 16, 2020
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CIA Paramilitary Operations Officers are an integral part of our overseas operations. They execute dangerous missions in austere environments. Recently, these locations have included Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, and Syria. They have been vital in taking down top threats to our national security. Certainly, the people we send must be exceptionally qualified.The "Paras" typically recruit from special operations, so that is very telling as to the nature of their mission set. So how do you become one of these elite, shadowy men? Well the basic qualifications are nothing to sneeze at. A full breakdown can be found here, but here are the wave tops.


The CIA's website states they require applicants to have a Bachelor's degree, or be within a year of completing it. Additionally, applicants must have a 3.0 GPA. "There is no preferred major or program of study," according to the recruitment page. They may accept foreign degrees, but they require proof of accreditation.


The requirement is to have served active duty military in:

  • Special Operations or Combat Arms
  • Aviation or Aviation-related specialties

The preference is at least 8 years of service. Additionally, have "served in multiple leadership positions," while doing so. Furthermore, they place emphasis on having multiple combat deployments. They apparently want guys who have already proven themselves, versus someone they have to build from the ground up.


The CIA want's individuals who are physically fit, and mentally strong. Also, knowing a foreign language, and having extensive travel experience is a plus. They are looking for operators prepared and capable of filling highly demanding roles. The more technical skills you bring to the team, the better.


The job listing makes it very clear being a CIA paramilitary is a dangerous job, and you will be placed at risk of bodily harm. As a result, they look for flexibility, and selflessness while serving as part of a team. They also emphasize their operatives will serve many short term deployments to hazardous areas. Moreover, the applicants may be stationed overseas for years. It is clearly not for the faint of heart. Being able to "operate with minimal supervision," is also very important.

Legal stuff

Applicants must meet other basic qualifiers, such as:

  • A thorough medical and psychological exam
  • A polygraph interview
  • A comprehensive background investigation
  • Not have used illegal drugs in 12 months and pass a drug test

The screening process can be lengthy and specifics can always change. The starting pay is between $65,442 - $108,422. The job is full path and based in Washington DC. If you feel like you have what it takes, especially to join the CIA, this may be the job for you. Let us know what other jobs you'd like us to look into in the comments below!

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