Interesting philosphy but it leaves me a bit curious...I can't speak for the SEALS but as a former member of the Army's Airborne Rangers and a Reserve Special Operations Soldier for 15+ years I can say we did allot of work with bayonets and other live blades. Of course they were no where near the Asian Knife Arts or Japanese Koryu in terms of thier syllubus but we sure knew how to train with live blades and most of us supplimented the Fairburn Sykes (sorry spelling) training with work in Silat which was bred into the curriculam from our brothers in the Phillipines Army and Marines...
My question is do you wait "two years" to train your "Special" Students with a live blade as well knowing most of them are going into harms way???
Already you have heard opinions regarding "what you would want a police officer to do or not do" when entering a house.
Likewise, if you are teaching someone in the armed forces who will be in combat, you must discern what is needed given one's capabilities.
Most soldiers, most black belts, can't really defend themselves with open hand or with knife or baton. This takes years and years to develop "finesse in killing". Don't get me wrong like the gun anyone can pick up a knife and thrust with it.
What most soldiers need in combat is something simple. He does not have time to train everyday, year after year. So, "thrusting with the knife is appropriate". But, I would prefer that soldiers learn marksmenship with a gun. Its a matter of time and resources.
Now, once the guy learns how to be a "snipper', (i.e. breathing, control of the hormones, adrenelin and cortisol his trained ability to control his body gives him the ability to transfer his skill to the "finesse of the knife".
Because, I am daily, I have the luxury to slowly teach my students how to tame and control the secreting of the aforesaid hormones. Two years is an arbitrary number. In other words, the average man will not have control over his emotions and will have difficulty with "fine motor movements" (e.g. cutting with a scissors and doing detail work with their fingers) Women, on the other hand naturally are able to use fine motor skills. Statistically, women too will secrete lower levels of adrenlin when faced with "fight or flight".
The result is that I teach women the "live blade" almost on day one of their study with me and my men students have to prove to me during the "two years" their capability for finesse.
Joseph T. Oliva Arriola