Tis The RWS You See

Kongsberg Remote Weapon Station fitted with a 12.7mm machine gun and a 7.62mm machine gun. Kongsberg

SHAH ALAM: Tis the RWS you see. The Auditor General in its latest audit report faulted the Defence Ministry for not fitting remote weapon stations (RWS) on the eight IAG Guardians put into service with the Malbatt unit deployed in Lebanon under UNIFIL.

It was for this reason, it deemed the Guardians was not up to standard. The lack of the RWS also resulted in the government not getting the full reimbursement from the UN for the purchase of the vehicles.

Malbatt Guardians armed with 7.62 machine gun during a recent firing exercise in Lebanon. MYJointForce picture

The AG also said Malaysian peacekeepers could be in jeopardy if they have to fight without the RWS. The Guardians like any other battle taxis though were designed to carry infantry to the front lines where they will have to dismount to fight.

Kongsberg Remote Weapon Station fitted with a 12.7mm machine gun and a 7.62mm machine gun. Kongsberg

Of course a RWS will enable an APC to conduct a much accurate suppressive fire to allow dismounts to exit the vehicle safely or withdraw to a much safer position.

Aselsan STAMP RWS.

Anyhow, I can now confirmed that the 20 Armoured Wheel Vehicle 4X4 being sought for UNIFIL mission will be equipped with a RWS each.

Rheinmetall remote weapon station. Rheinmetall

I was told that the RWS chosen must be able to mount up to a 12.7mm machine gun, though the type chosen will be left to the discretion of the vehicle bidder.

FN Defndr RWS fitted with a 12.7mm gun. FN

This means the RWS could be a Kongsberg, FN, Leonardo and Aselsan or whatever type put forward by the vehicle bidder. The Army – which is serving as the technical advisor for the tender – will have the final say on the one selected. This means if a vehicle A is offered with a RWS B, the Army could ask for it to be fitted with another type though I imagined most of the bidders will likely try to appeal the decision.

IAG Guardian displayed at Weststar booth at DSA 2018 equipped with an unknown RWS.

Therefore, I am assuming the tender committee will likely choose the vehicle and RWS combo as offered by the bidders themselves.

Reutech Rogue RWS with a 12.7mm machine gun on an ACV Gempita.


— Malaysian Defence

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About Marhalim Abas 1479 Articles
Shah Alam

77 Comments

  1. Any plans on adding RWS to the the 8 (wasn’t it 9) IAG Guardian that MALBATT is currently using?

    This might be late, but the Guardian MRAPs seems like to be the Guardian Xtreme variant?

    Hopefully they will go with adding more of the IAG-made MRAPs.

  2. That’s kind of stupid roundabout way of making an objective selection. Why can’t TDM do the APC and RWS selection simultaneously and once both selected, they can work to integrate with each other? An APC touted with “modularity” should be able to accept any of the various RWS systems.

    The way this goes, we could end up with a superior vehicle with inferior RWS or inferior vehicle with superior RWS or worse, inferior of both if pricing becomes an issue.

  3. I believed nothing wrong with AG Report..We pay more and we got reimbursed less, thats why AG pointed that out..Its not like AG dictating or making decisions on what best for Army to use..He’s only talk about money per se..

    As for RWS theres plenty to select but for the sake of commonality better pick rogue already used on gempita or bushmasters or RWS on Lipan Bara.

    Reply
    We didn’t pay anything for the Guardians it was paid by Weststar as part of the deal for the Starstreak which included the buy back for the Starburst

  4. @Nihd
    The current Guardians in Malbatt had specifically omitted any form of RWS for operational reasons. Unless they got rotated back to MY, there is no reason to equip them with RWS while still in Lebanon.

  5. @ luqman

    ” So no more chinese made ships/electronics from now on? ”

    For a ship that costs RM262.5 milion each, it should be having top of the line chinese electronics, but it is not so it seems.

    Anyway my take on the LMS68.

    1) Just take it in, all 4 LMS68 as is. No need to improve its supposed deficiencies.

    2) Use those information to plan the specifications to get a new platform for LMS take 2 instead. Target cost for LMS take 2 must be less than 50% of the LMS68 (around RM100 million each) and be much more capable.

    3) Pass the LMS68 to MMEA for use in areas other than South China Sea when the new LMS take 2 is operational.

  6. @ marhalim

    ” We didn’t pay anything for the Guardians it was paid by Weststar as part of the deal for the Starstreak which included the buy back for the Starburst ”

    Which is why I am astonished why AG is focusing on this and claiming it as a “loss”.

    Those expired starbursts have 0 value anyway if Weststar didnt offer to trade it for the Guardian Extremes, the APCs is supplied exactly to Army specifications and requirements, and the cost of that free APC is reimbursed by UN some more . And yet it is singled out by the AG as a “loss” to the federal coffers. Unbelievable.

  7. Our AG logic

    Got value from zero value Starbursts + free APC + Being paid for the free APC = Loss

    Why in the AG report did not take into account everything and only focused on the “loss” of revenue from UN reimbursement because it is declared to the UN as an unarmed APC instead of an armed APC?

  8. @joe

    Yes i understand that. Its due to local population being more cooperative and friendly if they see soldiers at the turret i believe. It does give a sense that the local population are not really in that much danger if foreign soldiers are willing to put their body outside of the apc even if partially.

    Its just that since the new batch of MRAPs will have RWS, just wondering if the army want or need or ordered by UN to standardize it to the initial batch of guardians.

    Reply
    AFAIK no

  9. Luqman – “no more chinese made ships/electronics from now on”

    As you said: it’s not surprising. From Day One the RMN – for commonality issues – wasn’t keen on Chinese gear but it was either the Chinese LMS or to use a cliche : “nothing at all”. The issue of Chinese stuff was always going to be an issue when it came to integrating and certifying Western stuff on.

    The intention was for the LMS to be fitted with modular mission payloads but the OEMs (had they been ordered) would have been Western and that would have had to be linked to the CMS.

  10. Apart from the ability to enable accurate and stabilised fire from inside the vehicle; the RWS (the downside is the ‘straw’ like effect) enables a 24 hour observation capability and the ability to zoom in on things of interest; via its optics.

    A useful capability to have in a peace keeping low threat environment for which observation and the need to determine various things forms a huge part in what troops do.

  11. My take, perhaps the Auditor General needs to get military savvy people on board who know what is a good/ bad buy.
    And on our LMS electronic deficiencies, any chance of rectification works that can be had?

  12. … – “KD Serang should be good to go for at least 10 more years into the future”

    The main concern is the hull. As long as the hull stays as it is and doesn’t deteriorate. As ships age the main concern is always the condition of the hulls.

    Funny enough despite being older and seeing much more time at sea; the hulls of the FACs are in much better condition than the younger Lakdamanas.

  13. ” enables a 24 hour observation capability and the ability to zoom in on things of interest; via its optics ”

    binoculars with thermal vision can be used instead.

    http://s1.manualzz.com/store/data/010632982_1-4e793dd9ff0008911449f92c199503fd.png

    If cost is the main concern, use a monocular like this

    http://image.slidesharecdn.com/technicaldataflirscoutiiimonocular-170915080554/95/technical-data-flir-scout-iii-thermal-monoculars-optics-trade-2-638.jpg

    http://anvsinc.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/FLIR_SCOUTIII_3.jpg

  14. @…

    It was a really mistake going Chinese at the first place. Buying some of their things hoping to placate them didn’t work seeing their ships are still encroaching into our waters. Najib should have known better…

  15. @Luqman
    During warranty period, I have no problem if problems crop up now and the vendors can rectify it FOC and to ensure no similar issues on the subsequent units. In comparison, didn’t it happen before our Western made sub with fully Western systems couldn’t dive at some point?

    @Nihd
    It could be a requirement pushed by UN bureaucrats sitting pretty in their nice offices but do they know the situation better than our guys there? How many UN missions were a success when they alienated the local populace?

  16. @ ASM

    ” Buying some of their things hoping to placate them ”

    No, it has nothing to do with placating them. The LMS buy is a tradeoff for China to take the tabs for 1MDB losses (along with other lucrative projects like the ECR). That was the plan originally. But Najib govenment fell in the last GE, and the 1MDB fraud unraveled. Goldman Sachs was forced to pay for the losses, and we got to recover some of the loot (like the RM1 billion yacht for example), so there is no need to get someone to take the tabs for 1MDB now.

    On buying Chinese weaponry and equipment.

    IMO why not? China is a regional (if not a global) power, we cannot be officially at loggerheads with China. So I am fine with buying chinese equipments. But not for something we need to use regularly for our security missions in south china sea.

  17. … – “binoculars with thermal vision can be used instead”

    Yes it can but it requires the person to stick himself out of the hatch and it doesn’t enable a zoom (vital in identifying distant objects and individuals) and track capability which can be transferred to a screen.

    The discussion was not on the merits of a RWS or vice versa but the advantages or enables apart from being able to direct accurate and stabilised fire from within the hull in both a wartime and peacekeeping environment …

  18. @…

    If China’s wasn’t as belligerent as it is now, then sure. Quality wise Chinese things have improved considerably since say 20 years ago. However from the way China’s behaving right now, i think it’s preferable to limit the arms purchase to Western and (if absolutely necessary) Russian makes.

  19. ” doesn’t enable a zoom (vital in identifying distant objects and individuals) ”

    Yes those things can zoom unlike a normal binocular.

    ” but the advantages or enables apart… ”

    Using a RWS primarily for observation, especially in a peacekeeping situation and mission, will not bode well with any hearts and minds of the population. Would you be comfortable with a RWS pointing at your family home, even if it is just used for observation?

    I am all in for HMG RWS retrofit for our MIFV for example (as it is to be used in the event of a war), but not for an equipment used for day to day peacekeeping missions. Another reason why I am angry with the AG, as IMO ATM knows best what to be used for the peacekeeping situation in Lebanon. Its not like the soldiers in Lebanon are complaining about the lack of RWS on their APCs.

  20. @ ASM

    ” If China’s wasn’t as belligerent as it is now, then sure ”

    Are we politically ready to officially tell of China? Are we economically ready to take out China as our trading partner (like their commitment to buy our palm oil)?

    I dont think we can ever do that, unless we can magically shift Malaysia to a location east of New Zealand.

    Buying and using chinese equipments (of things that we would not use for daily patrols is SCS) will prove to China that we are not hostile to China, and gets us things that would probably be very expensive from the west.

    I am looking at their 155mm lightweight towed and SPH howitzers, loitering and vertical launch missiles, logistical and engineering vehicles, Active Protection Systems, among others, would be a good fit for malaysian armed force.

  21. .. – “Using a RWS primarily for observation, especially in a peacekeeping situation and mission”

    What if the peacekeeping situation ugly? What if the locals turn hostile?

    The 24 hour observation capabilities end enabled by a RWS are a very useful feature but doesn’t mean that observation will be its “primary” (as you put it) use or the “primary” reason a RWS was bought. Doesn’t mean that have zero utility in a peacekeeping mission.

    .. – “ Would you be comfortable with a RWS pointing at your family home, even if it is just used for observation”

    Not a very apt comparison.

    If I was a vehicle CO and was operating in an environment in which I could get hurt – whether rocks of bullets – I would welcome the ability to be able to do verdin things whilst within the protection of my vehicle…..

    Also the RWS can be used for its observation/surveillance capabilities not only during patrols but also at bases at fixed observation points (no in case you mention it’s different thing but in Kosovo and Bosnia the Yanks found the optics of TOW to be a very useful observation feature). We have high powered telescopes at bases and observation points which are very visible. Would using a RWS for observation or perimetre security be considered much more provocative that a RWS on a stationary vehicle?

    … – “Its not like the soldiers in Lebanon are complaining about the lack of RWS on their APCs.”

    You know this for a fact or are you making an assumption which you’d like to be true? I have no idea personally.

    Never mind what the army or Joint Force HQ think; do you know for a fact that troops are not “complaining”? Even if they were not “complaining” does it automatically mean they wouldn’t welcome the addition of a RWS in the knowledge that things are dicey and that trouble can break out at vert little notice? BTW there have been instances in the past (yes in UNIFIL) where troops in opened hatches had stuff thrown at them as well as the odd pot shots.

    Yes, yes I’m aware of the need not to antagonise the locals and the fact that our troops are on a peacekeeping mandate but for crying out loud we’re not talking about mounting large calibre cannons or ATGw launchers here. It’s not as if a RWS is a totally overkill and not as if the situation in southern Lebanon will never turn ugly – it has before and attested to the number of peacekeepers killed (intentional or otherwise) by hostile fire.

    …. @MO ATM knows best what to be used for the peacekeeping situation”

    Yes you’ve mention before.

    Troops on the ground known what’s needed and what’s not: what works and what doesn’t. But there can be a certain disconnect between troops on the ground and HQ/staff elements back home. Some staff at Joint HQ may have served with UNIFIL but their input can be ignored by senior officers/staff types who may have visited Lebanon just once in tightly scripted visits.

  22. … – “Yes those things can zoom unlike a normal binocular”

    What about the things it can’t do?
    What about the fact that a RWS enables the user to have a stabilised observation/zoom capability which can be displayed on a screen and whilst doing away with the need to be out of a hatch?

    You can go on about the AG, about what you think the army top brass knows best about and about the need to not antagonise the locals.

    I’m taking about the overall merits of a RWS in a peacekeeping environment and how having one enables operational flexibility; including doing away with the need for an individual to stand out of an open hatch should things get dicey.

  23. @ASM
    Everybody has their conspiracy theories on why we buy China stuff. Who knows, perhaps the Penang undersea tunnel project awarded to CRC was also part of a separate deal with China. Perhaps Proton sold off to Geely is yet another deal.

    Is China things bad? Many seemed to be happy using Lenovo PCs, Huawei phones, Hisense TVs, Haier fridges or rewiring their home electricals with China switches and products.

  24. Just to reiterate

    Auditors are briefed by the clients, in this case the Ministry of Defence. Auditors and clients work together to come up with the report, which is based not on the Auditors’ SOPs but on the client’s own SOPs. Auditors are only there to check whether the client is following the client’s own SOPs. When a problem is identified, the client is given full opportunity to provide a justification, as can be seen from the A-G’s report.

    If the Auditor-General came to the conclusion that this contract did not follow procedure, and the client could not provide a more reasonable justification than that in the report, it may indicate a shortcoming that should be recognised.

    In simple terms: A-G asked where is the RWS, MOD replied “don’t know, but even without, it’s enough for mission requirement”. It’s a you said-he said situation. But the key point here is that we don’t know what’s the contents of the contract. This whole dispute can be solved with one simple question:

    Was the contractor actually paid for RWS?

    If no, then we know the Army is right and the A-G is not, and there is no actual financial loss.

    If yes… that’s a problem.

    Don’t you think that’s worth following up?

    Reply
    AFAIK the Guardians were not supposed to be delivered with a RWS

  25. @…

    “Are we politically ready to officially tell of China? Are we economically ready to take out China as our trading partner (like their commitment to buy our palm oil)?”

    I should have clarified my comment further. I don’t mean for us to cut relations with China, but rather to be selective with it. In fields like education, research, medical,etc we should extend our collaboration as much as we can. But those related to military and security we should limit our dealings to non-essential items. Pistols, trucks maybe but not to the extent like frigates and fighter jets.

  26. ASM – “, i think it’s preferable to limit the arms purchase to Western and (if absolutely necessary) Russian makes.”

    We are not a NATO country (obviously) but all our SOPs and other stuff are based on Western practises/SOPs. Buying non Western means the stuff will have little of no compatibility with what already have. It requires expensive and time consuming integration and certification; also increases not reduces our already large footprint. This is the reason why we are so reluctant to buy Chinese; despite it being ‘cheap’.

    It’s one thing buying a Chinese made phone or a flat screen; a very completely different buying a Chinese missile or a radar when everything else operated is Western.

  27. P.S.

    Typo.

    Would using a high powered telescope for observation or perimetre security be considered much more provocative that a RWS on a stationary vehicle?

    Given how tense things are and how trouble can break out with little warning (as it has before) do we operate on the simplistic assumption that a RWS is not needed because troops are on a peacekeeping mission and have to be friendly to the locals or do we adopt the pragmatic approach of having a RWS in the knowledge it provides troops with the ability to return fire from inside the vehicle and also a 24 hour observation/surveillance capability which goes beyond what a handheld optical device enables?

    Chua – “Auditors are only there to check whether the client is following the client’s own SOPs”

    And …. their ability to churn out an accurate and objective assessment or report is wholly dependent on the info/data it’s provided with …

    Personally I don’t see what all the fuss is about. For one thing we lack all the needed info to make anything but an accurate conclusion. Secondly I suspect it’s another case of the right hand not fully knowing what the left is doing and the possibility of one side cocking up but not being truly transparent.

  28. @Chua
    Auditors are human beings. There are good auditors and there are bad auditors I worked with. There are auditors that could accept some rule bending as long the output follows the spirit of the process & procedure. There are auditors that are black & white, with no grey areas accepted even when situations have changed and doesn’t follow the script written on paper. There are auditors that redefined what their clients should do according to what they think, not what the client wants.

    One thing I learned, a good auditor will be objective to the purpose of audit and be transparent to everyone on the audit results. One that adds on his personal opinion, made worse when one isn’t a subject matter expert, doesn’t make a good auditor.

  29. @ azlan

    ” Would using a high powered telescope for observation or perimetre security be considered much more provocative that a RWS on a stationary vehicle? ”

    Not at all because there is no weapons being pointed to the subject that is being observed.
    ________________________

    ” it provides troops with the ability to return fire from inside the vehicle ”

    the cupola is surrounded by armor, and there is more than 8 firing ports around the Guardian. As i said, if you want to prioritize RWS, equip the MIFV first.
    __________________________

    ” also a 24 hour observation/surveillance capability which goes beyond what a handheld optical device enables ”

    current military handheld thermal devices are as advanced as the EO systems on a RWS, have laser rangefinders, can record the videos, image can be fed by cable or wirelessly to external monitors, or can even be mounted on masts.

    http://flir.netx.net/file/asset/16763/original/attachment

  30. @Azlan

    “It’s one thing buying a Chinese made phone or a flat screen; a very completely different buying a Chinese missile or a radar when everything else operated is Western.”

    I know. Nowhere did I mention in my previous comment that they are the same. What I implied was the stereotype of Chinese manufactured goods is no longer true nowadays, and judging by the standards of their smartphones and vehicles, we could safely say that their quality of their military hardware has improved as well. It may not be on par with Western ones, but they are not too far behind.

    ‘We are not a NATO country (obviously) but all our SOPs and other stuff are based on Western practises/SOPs.”

    Yes, I believed most readers who follow Malaysian related defence matters know that our Armed Forces are organised based on Western/NATO lines. I didn’t mention it as I thought it’s widely known fact and of course the primary reason our reluctance of going Chinese.

    In any case, IMO I preferred that we limit our purchases of security/military related items from the Chinese to minimum or non-essential roles. My reasoning is from a foreign relations standpoint, and not because of their (perceived) lack of quality.

  31. ASM – “nowhere did I mention in my previous comment that they are the same”

    Well, nowhere did I mention you implying “they are the same”.
    My comments were to highlight the issues we’d have going down this route.

    ASM – “most readers who follow Malaysian related defence matters know that our Armed Forces are organised based on Western/NATO lines”

    I believe they do but it doesn’t stop people from suggesting we buy Chinese or Russian despite the clear issues we’d face. My mention of what I did was to highlight why going this route world be a major issue for us.

    ASM – “we could safely say that their quality of their military hardware has improved as well. It may not be on par with Western ones, but they are not too far behind.”

    During discussions had convening the Chinese LMSs I pointed out that “quality” per see is not the issue, that Chinese yards have remarkable progress from the 1990’s and the 1980’s. One can get a product build to high specifications especially if one is willing to pay for it.

    In some areas their products (especially with missiles and other things) are “on par” with Western equivalents and in some cases they offer stuff that nobody else can at a certain price. A lot of Chinese products are marketed on the basis that although they might not be totally “on par” with Western equivalents; they can do most of the job at a fraction of the cost.

    I personally believe there are something we can and should get and some things we shouldn’t. If you look at the tech they’ve applied to smart phones; imagine the smart mines they produce using the same tech.

  32. @ ASM

    Actually we should buy chinese security/military related items exactly because of the foreign relations standpoint.

    There are plenty of items that can be had from China that would not compromise our interests in south china sea. Also most of the latest chinese equipment do use NATO standards and protocols. Why you can see Algerian Frigates using Thales SMART-S radar coupled with chinese CMS and weapons.

    Things such as

    AH4 155mm howitzer
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pgnNRgZ5roY/W3pEHMdtfjI/AAAAAAAAh90/8CHxIqFegagVV0Kvh3mlA6LVG-aDNJWHwCLcBGAs/s1600/8f7897de9c82d1584682fc848d0a19d8bc3e4270.jpg

    SH-15 155mm SPH
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-3QaX2itVv-A/XDEqYhe_9cI/AAAAAAAAi34/S2eifb5hQxUmbWZMOL8j-nejv1XT00pSgCLcBGAs/s1600/sh15.jpg

    CM-501GA CM-501XA missiles
    http://mpt.135editor.com/mmbiz_png/RLelcVvuUDsSnrnAowzStA46LMia3cRibawUQ7N9CUQa3RRd7PK3KmclXIbDZC4YbZfsQvRs39BPskP4lWnsP9yg/640?wx_fmt=png&wx_co=1

    CH-901
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-H9xlA9iuuZQ/XmoXhSNgkqI/AAAAAAAAXgo/UgE_eQorHaI5uObXCPAay0jyA6d-62GRACLcBGAsYHQ/s1600/Chinese%2Barmy%2BPLA%2Bto%2Bget%2Bsuicide%2Bdrones.JPG
    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZkM-oI3X41o/W-TenW3JStI/AAAAAAAAQCM/EYh0XDb3Eqc7mZVAhTxoXK1RV2SpA5jDQCEwYBhgL/s1600/CH-901%2BMini-UAV%2BSwarm%2BLauncher.jpg

    JYL-913 mobile bridge for 10PARA
    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-AB7aOqnZaxE/W-mG88UGwqI/AAAAAAAAUMY/ufJ3Cfrzj6g34bGwnfUJYxNa-9iEJi0ZQCLcBGAs/s1600/JYL913_assault_bridge_photo_001.jpg

    JY816-RF all-terrain vehicle
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MvwT–Vdgp4/W-0uNCyY_KI/AAAAAAAAeLg/N35Pr2QrRw0CrdqcFjR7e_h-F0nt1kiuQCLcBGAs/s1600/New_Jonyang_JY816-RF_all-terrain_vehicle_unveiled_at_AirshowChina_2018_925_001.jpg

    Z-19E
    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-sWjjqtF9oN0/Wv4YsBoFeMI/AAAAAAAAVH8/hDqtRSybCqgORBw4Ewh_hrQhdr9eCquigCLcBGAs/s1600/15c1c2c63c276082513350.jpg

  33. @ASM
    Although quality remains a concern simply because China is mainly adopting the same old reverse-engineer method the USSR did in the 50s/60s, in this particular case the interoperability of the systems and conflict of interest are the two paramount factors.

    @joe
    You take the A-G’s comments far too personally. A few nasty words never hurt anyone. Malaysians are far too sensitive to “face” and far too insensitive to fact. So we can swallow losses of a few billion dollars without a blink but riot in the streets because of a few words somebody said.

    Which would you prefer joe, sweet talk or ships and APCs delivered on time, on spec and within budget?

    P.s. the LMS deal was the first of a series of 12(?) deals signed in the wake of 1mdb revelations, others including the ECRL and Proton takeover by Geely. There is no speculation here, it’s fact.

  34. … – “current military handheld thermal devices are as advanced as the EO systems on a RWS”

    Nobody says they aren’t …. That is clearly not a point of contention but thanks for the link.

    I merely said that a handheld device cant provide the same level of capability as one fitted on a RWS; a stabilised mount intended to be used from within the vehicle – two slightly different things.

    …. – “the cupola is surrounded by armor, and there is more than 8 firing ports around the Guardian”

    You are making direct comparisons to reinforce your point of why a RWS is not needed. I’m pointing out that contrary to your claims a RWS clearly has utility in a peacekeeping environment and that it’s use doesn’t automatically mean we’ll antagonise the locals.

    We have various means of maintaining ties with the locals such as liaisons with local leaders and community initiatives such as clinics, dentistry and other means. We are already moving around in armoured vehicles; when troops dismount they are armed, have body armour and wear helmets; at certain observation points individuals with sniper rifles are clearly visible : adding a RWS isn’t going to ruin relations with the locals. Lebanon has seen armed strife since the 1970’s and the locals have a pretty good idea as to what constitute a threat or not.

    – The cupola may be surrounded by armour but the individual is still exposed.

    – Unless the vehicle was stationary or the target was the size of a barn door; shooting vis a port is extremely inaccurate as you very well know.

    … – “Not at all because there is no weapons being pointed to the subject that is being observed”

    If you say so …. BTW at times such devices are used at such a considerable distance away where those being observed have no way of making of making the distinction of whether the says device has a weapon attached…

  35. @Azlan

    I do concur with you on that note. As you said there are things that we can and should get from them. At the moment though, until China stops its patrol vessels from encroaching our borders we should limit our military trade and cooperation with China.

    Although I don’t really see that happening soon unless somehow Xi Jinping got suddenly “recalled” to his maker.

  36. … – “ if you want to prioritize RWS, equip the MIFV first”

    Who is “prioritising” anything. The discussion is about RWSs for our troops with UNIFIL and how a RWS clearly/unequivocally provides certain operational advantages in that in enables them to do certain things which they otherwise wouldn’t be able to; both along the lines of their peacekeeping mandate and in case something breaks out.

  37. Coming back to the Rws. Lebanons situation is never stable. things can go kinetic easily. If you read the book War Doctor, it described how dangerous the situation is even for that doctor who had been to any many battle grounds. Standing up on top cover duty unless its a fully enclosed cupola is very dangerous.
    If talk about heart n minds, its best done with all troops dismounted n walking about n speaking to the people in the street n during reconstruction.
    But are our soldiers linguistically trained to do that to influence peace?. A RWS is safe for our troops n their safety should be high up

  38. @ azlan

    ” The discussion is about RWSs for our troops with UNIFIL and how a RWS clearly/unequivocally provides certain operational advantages ”

    My comments was still within that scope.

    You, as a very well read person on the history of lebanon and the current situation, should know better if RWS is would really give any distinct advantage in carrying out the peacekeeping duties in UNIFIL.

    UNIFIL mandate as basically to make sure that southern lebanon is secured by Lebanese armed forces and not Hezbollah, so that there is no attacks into Israeli territory from southern Lebanon, and avoiding Israeli counterattack into Lebanese territory. There is no local fighting among the lebanese in the area, unlike say when we are operating in Somalia or Bosnia.

    Malaysian operational sector is in the middle, and not adjacent to the israeli border. So it is not in an area where there is active fighting whatsoever.
    http://unifil.unmissions.org/sites/default/files/unifilmap072020.jpg

    Majority of UNIFIL patrols are done alongside lebanese army, and is done a lot of times on foot. Most of other UNIFIL contingents also does not have APCs equipped with RWS. There is no such thing as going around doing patrols just buttoned up inside an APC.
    http://mobile.twitter.com/UNIFIL_/status/1297169369081032704

    http://mobile.twitter.com/UNIFIL_/status/1268538865473781760

    https://mobile.twitter.com/UNIFIL_/status/1161989806144012289

    http://mobile.twitter.com/UNPeacekeeping/status/972136660342312960

    heck the finnish battalion in unifil even patrols on bicycles!
    http://mobile.twitter.com/UNPeacekeeping/status/972136660342312960

    So please tell me how is the RWS availability could be really critical for the exact operational mission that UNIFIL is doing right now?

  39. @ lee yoke meng

    The situation in the last 10 years in UNIFIL secured area is very different from what you have portrayed.

    Most UNIFIL contingents does not have RWS equipping their APCs. If UN really requires all APCs equipped with RWS, most UNIFIL APCs should be equipped with RWS. Instead most APCs in UNIFIL does not have RWS.

  40. … – “should know better if RWS is would really give any distinct advantage in carrying out the peacekeeping duties in UNIFIL”

    And just because I have opposing views from you; I “don’t” know better whether a RWS “ould really give any distinct advantage in carrying out the peacekeeping duties in”?

    …. – “UNIFIL mandate as basically to make sure that southern lebanon is secured by Lebanese armed forces and not Hezbollah”

    Thanks for the heads up; I may not be familiar with UNIFIL’s mandate but I’m pretty aware of what it entails …

    … – “Most of other UNIFIL contingents also does not have APCs equipped with RWS”

    Based on that; you’ve come to the conclusion that the sane applies to us?

    … – “So please tell me how is the RWS availability could be really critical for the exact operational mission that UNIFIL is doing right now”

    Now you’re making me feel bad by saying “please” 🙁

    Making it sound – at this late stage of the discussion – as if I haven’t explained in a clear/cognisant manner why a RWS would be useful in the operational flexibility it provides; irrespective of the fact that UNIFIL’s mandate id in line with operations conducted in a non war situation.

    … – “Malaysian operational sector is in the middle, and not adjacent to the israeli border. So it is not in an area where there is active fighting whatsoever.”

    Thanks for the customary links but nobody (if you noticed) said it’s “in an area where there is active fighting whatsoever” ….

    The while idea of having the various contingents armed and protected the way they are for self defence is in case of open hostilities; which might see the possibility of them having to relocate to other (more threatening) areas as well as having to hastily relocate to other (safer) areas whilst being faced with the possibility of being caught in the middle by various sides as well as coming under the direct fire of various sides (both have happened before)….

    … – “Majority of UNIFIL patrols are done alongside lebanese army, and is done a lot of times on foot”

    Indeed they are depending on the terrain and circumstances. Ultimately a lot ate also done in armoured vehicles and at observation points troops with sniper rifles and GPMGs are clearly observable. Thus your claim that a RWS will antagonise the locals is spurious at best.

  41. … – “heck the finnish battalion in unifil even patrols on bicycles”

    It suits their requirements – great!
    Quite obviously the bicycles will be used when the threat situation is deemed low but not if things get volatile. They still utilise bicycles in the army back home.

    This however has zero context
    to the discussion on RWSs by the Malaysian contingent. Some of our patrols are conducted using soft skin 4x4s. The French at one point even deployed MBTs, heavy arty and ATGWs.

    It boils down to the various contingents deploying (with UN approval) what they feel they need to cater for various contingencies.

    … – “ There is no local fighting among the lebanese in the area, unlike say when we are operating in Somalia or Bosnia.”

    For a mandate which is carried out in an environment devoid of constant open conflict (e.g. Bosnia and Somalia to a lesser extent) the list of UNIFIL peacekeepers killed over the years (intentionally or otherwise by various actors) is a long one; why various contingents have taken certain steps to protect their troops and cater for the possibility can erupt.

  42. Lee – “y. If you read the book War Doctor, it described how dangerous the situation is even for that doctor who had been to any many battle grounds. ”

    “Pity The Nation” (Fisk)

    “From Beirut To Jerusalem” (Friedman)

    Lee – “But are our soldiers linguistically trained to do that to influence peace?.

    There are a interpreters attached to the various contingents.

    Lee – “A RWS is safe for our troops n their safety should be high up”

    The UN does not require any contingent to have a RWS but it’s the prerogative of the various contingents to equip their troops with what they feel is needed as long as the UN is not against it.
    Just because the UN does not require it doesn’t mean that it has zero utility, that it antagonises the locals or that does who have then are misguided.

    Should things get volatile and rocks and bullets start flying; then obviously the means for self defence and also to monitor one’s surroundings away from an open hatch is a plus point.

    Yes compared to other places Lebanon is considered a ‘safer’ area but as you’ve pointed out things are tense and trouble can break out at any time. UN troops there have been caught in situations in which they were not equipped or even required to handle.

    It’s fine to say that troops operate under a peacekeeping mandate and should only equipped with the means for self defence (these points are not in dispute) but it’s easy to say this when one’s not actually exposed to the danger.
    We’re talking about a RWS for crying out loud ; not MLRSs or ATGWs. It’s not as if RWSs only have a wartime utility or as if their use will be the straw which breaks the camel’s back when it comes to determining the relationship between UINIFIL troops and the locals.

  43. @ azlan

    ” Based on that; you’ve come to the conclusion that the sane applies to us? ”

    Yes it should be. If the UN requires the RWS other contingents should be required too. Right now its seems that RWS is needed because the AG explicitly told off the army that they are wrong and UN absolutely needs APCs to have RWS when the actual it is not.
    ________________________

    ” Thanks for the customary links but nobody (if you noticed) said it’s “in an area where there is active fighting whatsoever” ”
    Malcon is actually operating on the same area as the Finnish contingent. If the finns can patrol on bicycle with no issues, why is our patrols in Guardian APCs just without RWS and “need to put our soldiers heads out to shoot” is so big an issue? Exactly why i felt that the AG overstepped its jurisdiction in this matter.
    ______________________

    ” Ultimately a lot ate also done in armoured vehicles and at observation points troops with sniper rifles and GPMGs are clearly observable. Thus your claim that a RWS will antagonise the locals is spurious at best ”

    Sniper rifles and GPMG is not used for observation and being pointed to people during patrols. M2 HMG on RWS is a huge weapon compared to GPMG. As you can see most patrols on APCs does not have anything larger than GPMGs, even that is usually removed from turrets and cupolas during patrols.
    ________________________

    ” The UN does not require any contingent to have a RWS but it’s the prerogative of the various contingents to equip their troops with what they feel is needed as long as the UN is not against it ”

    Right now the main issue is the AG explicitly singled out that the army was in the wrong not to have RWS on the guardians. They have been operating in Lebanon, contributing to the world peace and yet the AG told them off for wrongdoing that is not even an issue? And nobody thinks the AG should say sorry to the army on this?
    ___________________________

    Just to add, UNIFIL has lots of casualties in the past due to Hezbollah actively operating in the area from 1978 to 2010 and Israel actively attacking the area. But nowadays the area has been fully secured by the lebanese army in concert with UNIFIL international contingents. So i dont see why we absolutely need to have RWS when most other international contingents in UNIFIL operates without one.

  44. @Chua
    I prefer the official in discharging his duties to act professionally and to say things professionally, that means to keep his opinions to himself and to those he should advice. Giving such opinions to open press doesn’t reflect such professionalism made worse when he isn’t a subject matter expert. Moreso for one who holds such high positions in power. Lack of professionalism is something that is lacking with our politicians (from both sides).

    If the need for RWS comes from our field commanders or the UN Command for UNFIL, fine! I get it we may need to keep some APCs with RWS in reserve in case things go to hell but in all due respect, typical UN missions don’t stick long enough in hot zones when shooting starts.

  45. sorry, links on finnish UNIFIL patrols on bicycles

    http://mobile.twitter.com/Tom_Antonov/status/716232308689338369

    Anyway, an article on the renewed UNIFIL mandate and what is needed by the forces moving forward.

    http://autos.yahoo.com/un-chief-wants-more-agile-mission-lebanon-212028617.html

    – move towards lighter and smaller “high-mobility light tactical vehicles and reconnaissance vehicles with improved monitoring capacity,” that “would result in a force sufficiently protected but with a lighter footprint, geared towards better situational awareness”. IMO this is what small and light looks like (korean KLTV)
    http://m.post.naver.com/viewer/postView.nhn?volumeNo=17106683&memberNo=37344293

    – ” As well as the video surveillance and sensors already deployed, Guterres called for for thermal-imaging cameras, hi-tech binoculars and drones which could bolster surveillance capacity “.

  46. … – “Yes it should be”

    No it shouldn’t. Assuming the UN approves its the prerogative of the various contingents to equip troops with what they feel is needed.

    … – “o. Right now its seems that RWS is needed because the AG”

    I couldn’t give a toss the issue is about the AG and the army and whet supposedly happened. I’m looking at things from an operational perspective; equipping troops with something with clear utility.

    … – “ If the finns can patrol on bicycle with no issues”

    These are separate issues which have zero bearing in one another and shouldn’t be conflated. The Fins (whim by the way have a long tradition of using bicycles and still do at home) obviously feel it suits their purposes under the present climate but obviously of things got dicey one wouldn’t see Finns moving around in bicycles.

    … – “Right now the main issue is the AG explicitly singled out that the army was in the wrong not to have RWS on the guardians”

    That’s the “main issue” for you ..

    The “main issue” for me is the fact that a RWS enables our troops to do certain things they otherwise would be able to; both under the present status quo and in the event that things take a quick unexpected turn for the worse.

    We are are already moving around in APCs, at times from the east hatch (above the troop compartment) there is a GPMG, there is a quick reaction alert Condor parked outside the camp gate; at observation posts and towers we have troops on sentry duty with rifles and GPMGs; clearly observable also at times are sniper rifles; yet a RWS will
    affect relations with the locals?

    …. – “NIFIL has lots of casualties in the past due to Hezbollah actively operating in the area from 1978 to 2010 and Israel actively attacking the area”

    Irrespective …..

    You mentioned how Lebanon is not like Bosnia or Somalia and I clearly pointed out that despite this – for whatever reason – there is a long list of UN troops who have been killed. Also when things do break out; they tend to be much more intense and more wide scale in terms of devastation (due to the Israeli angle); as seen over several months including “Grapes Of Wrath” in the 1990’s and in 2006.

    Remember the incident a few years ago when the Filipino contingent on the Golan (yes this isn’t Lebanon) was surrounded and involved in a protected firefight against non state actors?

    In southern Lebanon UNIFIL isn’t only concerned about a renewal of hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah but also from other possible threats. Thanks to the Syrian war; parts of Lebanon now contain various Syrian and other elements who have engaged in gunfights amongst themselves and who have also partially made it to the south.

  47. A point of contention between Lebanon and Israel is also the Sheba Farms. Lebanon and Syria says its Lebanese territory but Israel says it belongs to Syria. Irrespective, it is a source for future potential trouble and much fighting has occurred in the area in the past.

    On the UN it issues a clear directive as to what it intends to achieve and countries deploying troops must agree to certain UN conditions in line with what is intended to be achieved. Unsurprisingly although the head of UNIFIL exercises direct operational control; the heads of the various contingents can refuse certain orders if instructed by their governments.

    With regards to actual equipment and the means to carry out allocated task; the UN sets the guidelines/SOOs but the actual tactical means are left to the discretion of the contingents (i.e. the Finns judging the situation warrants bicycle – they have the tactical culture – mounted patrols or the Irish – who’ve been there decades – deciding the threat of kidnappings justifies the use of APCs in certain sub sectors). Same goes with weapons : we might feel that nothing heavier than 6 81mm mortars are needed but the French see the need for MBTs and heavy arty.

    There are no set rules; depends on individual needs/preferences.

    What troops are equipped with -mostly – is considered the bare minimum in case they have to
    defend themselves or in case trouble breaks out and they have to redeploy to another more threatening sector or in case they have to withdraw in the face of heavy fighting and interference from quarters including desperate and fearful refugees who might impede movement.

  48. I believe if we would want better situational awareness during patrols, a 2nd member inside could operate a surveillance drone around a perimeter and relay potential hazards to the commander up top.

  49. Says.
    There is a difference. Like us. We brought our Condors as is where is. Then we bought Guardians to replace. Unifil says if you buy n I pay, you ned to buy with rws. But if you bring existent equipment its ok. No need to change to rws.
    Anyway Learn from lessons. Especially from mogadishu

  50. Lee – “. Unifil says if you buy n I pay, you ned to buy with rws”

    I don’t think UINIFIL actually said that. Like I said in a previous post : “With regards to actual equipment and the means to carry out allocated task; the UN sets the guidelines/SOOs but the actual tactical means are left to the discretion of the contingents”.

    We do “learn” and take the possibility of danger very seriously. To me the issue between the AG and the army is immaterial and doesn’t interest me. How valid and accurate a report is is wholly dependent on how accurate the info is that is provided to the AG. It sounds like a classic bureaucratic cock up with one hand not fully aware of what the other is doing.

    Others have pointed out that Lebanon is not Bosnia or Somalia but such direct comparisons are misleading ….. There is a long list of peacekeepers killed over the years and when actual fighting breaks out; it’s more intense and on a higher level than in Bosnia or Somalia.

    The unexpected can and does happen; a few years ago a Filipino detachment on the Golan (yes not in Lebanon) was surrounded by non state actors and was in a prolonged fire fight.
    In 2006 and many other instances including “Grapes of Wrath” UN troops (for whether reasons( found themselves directly under fire and has to face circumstances they were not prepared for.

    The fact remains that RWSs are being procured and they have utility. At times our troops conduct foot patrols, at times they move in
    APCs – depends on the area and the operational dictates.

    When on foot patrols the men are armed; wear helmets and have body armour. When in Condors at times the rear hatch (above the troop compartment) has a GPMG. At bases and observations points there is a Condor on alert and troops manning positions can clearly be seen with GPMGs and and other weapons. As such any suggestion that a RWS will affect relations with the locals by creating mistrust is ludicrous; just as ludicrous as any claims that a RWS has little utility in a peacekeeping mission.

  51. @ lee yoke meng

    The Korean Dongmyeong Unit (동명부대) bought new KLTV to replace their current Barracuda APC. It is also without RWS.

    Leasons from mogadishu? No Malaysian soldiers died due to being shot from the cupola. Our soldiers died from being hit by RPG-7s, something that cannot be solved by being equipped with RWS or not and more towards the armour of the vehicle itself.

    @ azlan

    RWS has utility. No questions about it. But to repremand our hardworking peacekeepers for not having something that they did not request for in the first place and other peacekeeping forces in UNIFIL also does not come equipped with is IMO something not right with the AG report.

  52. ….

    As I’ve made clear in my discussions; I have zero interest in what the AG allegedly said; who is at fault, the accuracy of the info provided for the report; the fact that other contingents don’t have RWSs; etc.

    I’m disinterested.

    My comments and interest are solely directed at RWSs and the fact that having them enables troops to do certain things they otherwise wouldn’t be able to do.

  53. @Chua
    Whose priorities? The guys on the ground there, or the bureaucrats making the decisions? Its seems there is a disjoint between these two.

  54. …. – “Leasons from mogadishu?

    The “lesson” is that despite operating under a peacekeeping mandate; troops can be placed in unexpected circumstances in which they are not prepared (conflicting orders, bad maps, bad comms, etc) or equipped for (no NVGs, pintle mounted MGs which left operators very exposed; lightly armoured vehicles, etc) thus the need to be prepared for certain unexpected contingencies.

    ….. – “No Malaysian soldiers died due to being shot from the cupola”

    Several were injured and others were unable to return accurate fire due to the fact that that they were operating pintle mounted MGs and were exposed to enemy fire. Several books mention this.
    Not all the Condors had turrets and to maintain SA as well as communicate with dismounted U.S. troops and a lack of NVGs, vehicle commanders had to be exposed from the hatches. One Condor commander had a shrapnel lodged in his helmet and several others suffered non threatening injuries. .

    Would the availability of RWSs have changed things – of course not; nobody suggested otherwise and that’s not the point.

    The lesson with Bakara Market is what can happen when troops operating under rigid and cumbersome chains of command and are placed in a situation for which they are not equipped for and were not originally intended to deal with.

  55. The very fundamental issue for me is that our fine boys and girls serving their country on the international area to keep the world in peace should not be reprimanded for wrongdoing on something that is technically a non issue in the first place.

    That is much more important than just discussing about the merits of RWS.

  56. @ azlan

    ” The lesson with Bakara Market is what can happen when troops operating under rigid and cumbersome chains of command and are placed in a situation for which they are not equipped for and were not originally intended to deal with ”

    In any situation, the priority is to equip our troops first and foremost the adequate and correct equipment for their intended mission. In the context of UNIFIL that means better pre-deployment trainings and soft skills and stuff such as thermal cameras etc. like what Mr Guterres spoke of
    http://autos.yahoo.com/un-chief-wants-more-agile-mission-lebanon-212028617.html

    When those basic needs are fulfilled, then things that is nice to have and equipments for situations that is not normal and not originally intended to deal with can be looked at.

  57. … – “That is much more important than just discussing about the merits of RWS.”

    What’s more “important” or vice versa is highly subjective ….

    If you want to be subjective and decide what’s more “important” by all means continue. I’ll make comments about what interests me and what I want to comment about; what i won’t do is decide whether my comments are more ‘important” or not in relation to comments made by others.

    My comments and interests are related to the issue of RWSs. I wasn’t just discussing the “merits” of RWSs but the operational flexibility they enable (slight differed); that their use won’t automatically affect relations with the locals (anymore than a vehicle mounted pintle mounted GPMG or sniper rifles – very visible at observation posts – would), that apart from enabling accurate and stabilsed fire to lsid from the vehicle they also enable a observation capability which ford beyond that offered by a handheld device which requires the user to be exposed and that just because other contingents don’t have them doesn’t automatically mean we also have no need for them).

    … – “I am not against installing RWS”

    By this stage of the discussion I would be aware of that….

    I was never under that impression and unless I’m very mistaken; I’ve never openly stated or implied you were “against” the idea of RWSs per see.

  58. … – “stuff such as thermal cameras etc”

    RWSs enable the ability to monitor the surrounding area and other areas from long ranges. Having a handheld device is no substitute for the observation capabilities offered by a RWS. You’re making it sound as if a RWS is a luxury which we can do without until other needs have been met and that it has little utility in a peace keeping environment.

    …. – “ nice to have and equipments for situations that is not normal and not originally intended”

    First of all; a RWS in this day and age is not a “nice” to have thing but something which offers utility both in a relatively benign peacekeeping environment and also if things get dicey.

    … – “In any situation, the priority is to equip our troops first and foremost the adequate and correct equipment for their intended mission”

    By and large our troops already have what they need to fulfil their mission; including handheld thermal binos. Adding a RWS (which we are) enables them – if things get dicey – to return fire without exposing themselves; at the moment if required to defend themselves from their vehicle they’d have to do it whilst exposing themselves or from ports which are a very inaccurate way of hitting anything. Not to mention the 24 hour stabilised observation capability enabled by RWSs which go beyond a held held device.

    Also in your “to equip our troops first and foremost the adequate and correct equipment for their intended mission” you left out the part where we also have to (and do) make provision for the fact that things may rapidly spiral out of control and that various contingency plans have to be in place; including troops doing things they on paper are not required to do in line with their mandate (that is a lesson many contingents have learnt over the past few decades of peacekeeping).

  59. … – “ skills and stuff such as thermal cameras etc. like what Mr Guterres spoke of”

    Yes you previously posted the link.

    What he says is to be expected and is reminder to the contingents that may be lacking certain abilities. It’s also an overall reminder that contingents have to adjust in order to better do things.

    By and large however our troops already have what it takes (they have the needed vehicles – even if not in the desired capability and numbers;; more body armour and optics than any unit at home and have organic capabilities in the form of thermals and other things which are still lacking with units st home). They also regularly – in line with UNIFIL guidelines – constantly practice/train for various contingencies and maintain certain readiness levels.

  60. Sorry Says. In Mogadishu our troops were not killed just by RPGs. You forgot the commando shot right in the middle of the temple by gunmen?.
    The commando is not the only soldier that died from shooting. If not mistaken there was another one.
    Of course the commando was at the back of a soft skin lorry

  61. Lee,

    The incident where our men with no help from the Italians (one of them wanted to see where he grew up) were at the incident; had to negotiate to retrieve the body. Yes but the patrol was attached to UN HQ and were not part of MALBATT. If I’m not mistaken Ken Olivero (spelling?) was there.

  62. In Bosnia we also lost an observer (attached to UNPROFOR HQ) to a mine.
    There is also the incident where a Getak Khas man was killed – the full circumstances have never been publicly released.

  63. @ lee yoke meng

    that event is not a part of the Bukhara market incident.

    That event was an ambush of a soft skin landcruiser convoy with 2 malaysians (1st is driver of the landcruiser and 2nd the person sitting beside him) killed was in the landcruiser up front and was quickly surrounded by civilians that formed a human shield of the insurgents. The mob surrounded the vehicles, his weapon was snatched from him and he was shot at close range.

  64. @Azlan

    I’ve read some stuff about GGK deployment to Bosnia, mostly unofficially. As usual details from the official channels are very sparse. I would be grateful for any clarification

    – GGK deployment was supposed to be a secret (?) and initially they were based in Turkey. Apparently this caused quite a stir when it was found out.

    – They were involved in rescuing a downed USAF F-16 pilot, and got to him first before handing him over to US side. They had to fight off a Russian team coming for the pilot as well.

    – They were a part of the multi-national team hunting Milosevic.

  65. ASM – “– They were a part of the multi-national team hunting Milosevic.”

    The hunt for was various Bosnian, Bosnian Serbs and Serbs. The well know ones were Mladic and Karadvic. The well known Bosnian Serb bastions/huge outs were in Pale and Banja Luka.

    Moosevic was the president of Serbia and there was no ‘hunt” for him per see during the ex Yugoslavia civil war. Attempts to assassinate him only came during the Kosovo war. By that fine we had no involvement in the Balkans.

    Gerak Khas was said to have trained alongside other SF teams to conduct rescues in the event hostages were taken by the warring parties. All I know about the Turkey involvement is we sent people there (also to Pakistan) for cold weather training.

    The only F-16 pilot in aware of being downed was Scot Grady (Brady?). A lot of resources – CSAR helis, command elements, a AEW – were used for the effort.
    CSAR can be extremely resource intensive. As part of a discussion on CSAR in another thread I pointed out that CSAR birds ate just one part of the equation. Fighters are needed for cover, spare helis in case the CSAR bird is in turn shot down, SEAD/DEAD elements of a threat is present, etc.

  66. It’s a known fact that Gerak Khas elements were there and along with other SF units trained for the possibility that hostages would have to be rescued. Photos exist of joint training conducted; including one with a RN Sea King.

    Apparently PASKAL was also there. Years ago Perajurit published a pic of a group of Gerak Khas men in Sarajevo; armed with MP-5s and wearing unmarked green (not UN blue) berets; at a time when MALBATT was under UNPROFOR command.

    I doubt very much that any of our units participated in the search for any downed pilots for the simple reason that neither the Yanks, French or Brits hardly needed our help; they had the assets and manpower in theatre. We may have been told that if an aircraft was downed in our vicinity that our assistance would be needed but that’s it. I have the book written by the Harrier pilot who was shot down. With initial assistance from Bosnian troops; he was rescued.

    The hunt for “war criminals” actively took place after the Dayton Accords which led to peace. It involved NATO troops (the hunts went on until recently ) and by 1996 we had left.

  67. … – “I wonder what would be the case for Malaysia”

    Depends on the circumstances.

    If we were unjustifiably attacked on our sovereign soil; naturally there would be mass public sentiment to defend ourselves. Prior to actual hostilities there would have been a period of tensions and the public would be aware of the wider circumstances and implications behind the conflict. What would be the affects on morale if troops operated on foreign soil and things took a turn for the worst is the question.

    If on the other hand; troops were deployed to some far off place (whether under the UN or not) where the majority of Malaysians would have difficulty locating on a map and troops suffered casualties; there would be public support and sympathy for the troops but not for the politicians who sent them there.

  68. @joe
    Our priorities as a nation.

    Between getting pissed over a few spicy words, and getting pissed over a few billion dollars magicked away for the umpteenth time, I would prefer Malaysians to be more of the latter rather than the former.

  69. @ chua

    i am pissed that our pencil pushers reprimanding our peacekeepers for RM2 million “loss” that should be no issue, because the APC is free anyway (why didn’t they include that in their calculation?), exactly the specs that the ATM wanted, and reimbursed exactly for what it is (unarmed APC).

    I am pissed that the perpetrators of one of the biggest scam in our living history (1MDB) is still at large and acts like he has nothing to do with it, and thinks that he can be the kingmaker in our political future.

    I am pissed that leaders that supposed to do the hard decisions on our LCS did not, and wasted billions due to indecisions.

    I am pissed that we have a dysfunctional government and opposition that is busy thinking about themselves when we really need to have a strong budget plan for RMK12 2021-2025.

  70. @Chua
    Face reality. No one, from either sides, does that. Everyone are looking only for themselves, solidifying their positions & power, and preening their feathers. This happens everywhere not just here. We can only hope by luck or by design, their priorities matches to the country’s own.

    But clear priorities must be given to those guys that are on the firing line. That is clear.

  71. @…
    Indeed. Then you just have to think about your priorities then. Which of that long list is most important for the nation.

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