Sunday, 22 May 2016

Defence Asset Procurement Policy - Threats - Part 2

Note: In the previous article, we have explored some of the procurement methods that are in practiced in several countries, including our own.  We also explored how failure to monitor procurement issue had led to a weakened RMN

Information shared in this article could not be independently verified.  And even if it has been independently verified, I do not and will not identify them to protect individuals who have and may have shared these information with me.

Tun Hussein Onn
Military procurement doctrine is largely driven by threats that a country is facing.  Malaysia does not run far from this.  As mentioned in the first instalment of this article, the invasion threat and the Domino Effect theory had convinced our defence planners back then to convince then Prime Minister Tun Hussein Onn (father to the current Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein).
Son, Datuk Seri Hishammudin Tun Hussein

In fact, understanding the threat that Malaysia is facing today should be the driving reason in formulating a defence assets procurement policy to ensure that our defence forces stay current and is able to counter potential threats.

There are 2 forms of threats to a nation; external and internal threat.

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Defence Asset Procurement Policy - A Need

The last major large scale defence asset procurement made under a single programme was under the PERISTA (Program Pembangunan Rancangan Istimewa ATM) which began in the late 70's which trickled through the 1980's.

The programme which saw Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) underwent a large scale modernization programme which changed it's face from a counter-insurgency centric defence force into a largely capable semi-conventional armed forces.

Part of PERISTA Programme.  Unfortunately, there is a dearth of material on PERISTA purchases.

Monday, 21 March 2016

No US base in Sabah, says armed forces chief

KUALA LUMPUR, March 18: The Malaysian Armed Forces today dismissed rumours that the United States is setting up a military base in Sabah.

Armed Forces chief General Zulkifeli Mohd Zin said in a statement that the rumours were “untrue”.

He said the Defence Ministry and the Armed Forces had no intention of allowing a foreign military base to be established in Malaysia.

Friday, 18 March 2016

M’sia not joining military ops - Hishamuddin

Exercise Northern Thunder. Source: Internet

Malaysia will not take part in military operations should Saudi Arabia decide to go on a large-scale war against the Islamic State.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, in saying this, added that Malaysian armed forces personnel based in Riyadh were not involved in “offensive action”.

“They are not designed and not trained to go on the offensive.

“Also, they do not have the required assets. Their main role there is to ensure that the aircraft are serviceable and safe to be used by peacekeeping missions,” he said in reply to Tian Chua (PKR-Batu).

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Konfrantasi hero recounts tragedy: 'They were caught off guard and shot'

On this day, 51 years earlier, a young Army officer walked out of the jungle in Kota Tinggi, Johor, his 7.62mm self-loading rifle slung to his shoulder and his fatigues covered in mud.

He had just completed a risky mission to search for Indonesian guerillas who had killed nine of his platoon mates.

Although trained for urban settings, retired Lieutenant-Colonel (LTC) Daljeet Singh and his men were successful.

They killed and captured a number of the guerillas. Pictures of his men from 2SIR carrying the dead and captured guerillas have not been seen in decades.

The stories of the men who were at the front line in North Borneo (now called Sabah) and in the swamps of Pasir Laba have not been told often enough.

Even now, Mr Singh's voice cracks and tears well up in his eyes, as he recalls the day he had to break the news of a fellow soldier's death to the man's wife.

He said: "She (the widow) just collapsed before I could complete (what I had to say). This was extremely touching to me because I was only 24 years old at that time."

The soldier was one of the eight men killed in an ambush in Kota Tinggi. The remains of another soldier was found days later.

Mr Singh was then mortar platoon commander at 2SIR, which was part of the 4th Malaysian Infantry Brigade. Mr Singh and the rest of 2SIR were deployed at Kota Tinggi.

He said: "We were mainly trained for internal security roles. Later, we were sent for jungle training in Ulu Tiram, Johor, before being deployed at Kota Tinggi."

Recalling the ambush, Mr Singh said: "On Feb 28, 1965, one of our platoons, which was led by the platoon sergeant, a man named Sergeant Ahmad, was deployed in the jungle to search for some Indonesian saboteurs."

As evening fell and daylight faded, the platoon prepared to camp for the night at the foot of a hill called Bukit Lebam.

He said: "Unknown to them, Indonesian soldiers were observing them from higher ground and they later opened fire on the platoon.

"The platoon was caught off guard and eight members of the platoon, including Sgt Ahmad, were killed on the spot."


Mr Singh said another platoon mate was taken prisoner by the Indonesians, but the remaining soldiers returned to the Company HQ.

He said they were all shaken by the news.

D Company 2SIR, under the command of Capt Mackintosh, was assigned the task of recovering the bodies of the ambushed soldiers.

His voice cracking, Mr Singh said: "We took the bodies back to Camp Temasek in Singapore (where 2SIR was located) and administered the burial rites."

On March 3, 2nd Lt Singh's mortar platoon was airlifted by helicopter from Seletar Airbase to Kampong Bahru, Johor. The next day, acting on information from a villager, they encountered the Indonesians infiltrators. There was a hail of bullets and one guerilla was killed.

Four other Indonesian infiltrators were killed in another encounter on March 6 and another two were killed on March 12.

But he wasn't done.

"Our Commanding Officer did not want to return without finding out what had happened to the ninth soldier, the one who was taken prisoner by the Indonesians.

"The villager said the Indonesians shot him about two days after he was captured and left his body along the jungle route where the other eight soldiers were ambushed," said Mr Singh.

"We retraced our steps along the route and found his remains along the route."

Mr Singh said the Indonesian infiltrators were well-trained and disciplined.

He said: "They had been brainwashed into thinking that Malaysia was ready for an uprising and that the people were waiting for the Indonesians to liberate them from the British.

"But the reality was actually the opposite."

The tragedy may have taken place 51 years ago. But for soldiers who were there, the hurt remains.

He chose SAF instead of medicine

The medals in his Bukit Timah Road home speak volumes of a military career spanning over 30 years.

Mr Daljeet Singh, 75, proudly showed his Independence Medal, his 30-year Long Service Medal, his 25-year Long Service Medal and the medal he received for his role as an army officer during the Konfrontasi period.

He recalled how he became a soldier after finishing his Senior Cambridge exams (the O-level examinations-equivalent of his time) in March 1959.

"My father wanted me to study medicine in India, which I was unwilling to do," he said.

Several months after his exam results were released, one of Mr Singh's former teachers learnt about the formation of the Singapore Military Forces, in anticipation of eventual self-government for Singapore in 1959.

Mr Singh said: "My former teacher advised me to consider soldiering as a career.

"So I joined First Battalion, Singapore Infantry Regiment (1SIR) in July 1959 as a recruit. I was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in July 1962.

"When Singapore joined Malaysia, 1SIR and 2SIR became part of the Malaysian armed forces."

Before retiring from the SAF, Mr Singh held several appointments, including Brigade Group Commander, HQ 21SIB from 1981 to 1991.

After his retirement, the grandfather of three spent 10 years working for the Singapore Technologies group.

His experience during Konfrontasi affirmed his belief in National Service.

He said: "We have a unique history and Singapore had a unique birth. What we have is worth defending." (

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Beijing accuses Tokyo over patrol planes for Philippines

BEIJING: Beijing on Thursday accused Tokyo of interfering in the South China Sea after Manila said it would lease five Japanese military planes to patrol areas it claims in the heavily disputed waters.

Beijing claims almost all of the strategically vital South China Sea, and is embroiled in a separate row with Tokyo over disputed islands in the East China Sea that has seen relations between the Asian powers sour badly in recent years.

Philippine President Benigno Aquino said Wednesday that Manila would lease five TC-90 training aircraft from Japan to “help our navy patrol our territory”, pointing out the disputed area in particular.

Monday, 14 March 2016

No China Coast Guard Vessel Anchored At Gugusan Beting Patinggi Ali - Chinese Envoy

Luconia Shoals/Beting Patinggi Ali. Source:

KUCHING, March 10 (Bernama) -- China has dismissed as untrue the reported permanent presence of a China Coast Guard vessel at the reef complex of Gugusan Beting Patinggi Ali in the South China Sea within the Malaysian exclusive economic zone.

A vessel of the China Coast Guard had come to the area but it is not anchored there, said China's Ambassador to Malaysia Dr Huang Huikang. Gugusan Beting Patinggi Ali is located north of Sarawak.

Huang spoke at a press conference after paying a courtesy call on Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem here Thursday.

Friday, 11 March 2016

RMN moves to strengthen country’s maritime security

LUMUT, March 9: The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) is set to consolidate all its naval units from 15 classes to five in an effort to strengthen the country’s maritime security.

Navy chief Datuk Seri Ahmad Kamaru­l­zaman Ahmad Badaruddin said this is part of the RMN’s transformation programme to stren­g­then its armada and also to be cost effective.

“The replacement process will be done in stages. We will focus on the abilities of the local industry and from 15 classes we will consolidate it to five classes.

“The five classes are New Generation Patrol Vessels (NGPV), Littoral Combat Ships (LCS), submarines, Littoral Mission Ships (LMS) and Multi Support Ships.

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Dewan told of IS bids to kidnap Najib, Zahid and Hisham

RMP works around the clock to contain the threat of Daesh. Source: Bicaranews

Kuala Lumpur: The nation's security forces have succeeded in curbing and thwarting several attempts by the Daesh militant group to kidnap the country's leaders including the Prime Minister, the Dewan Rakyat was told Tuesday.

Deputy Prime Minister and Home Affairs Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi revealed that apart from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, he and Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein had also been the targets.

"On Jan 30, 2015, a total of 13 individuals associated with the Daesh militant group plotted to kidnap the country's top leaders including the Prime Minister, Home and Defence Ministers," he said.

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

‘Sultanate commanders’ in Sabah

Map of Sabah. Source:

KOTA KINABALU: Intelligence conducted by security forces has shown the existence of ‘panglima kesultanan’ (a sultanate commander) in all state constituencies in Sabah and it was seen as a threat to the nation, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

He said security threats posed by militant groups were no longer confined to Sabah’s east coast as they had spread to the west coast areas as well, he added.

It is a new challenge to the security forces.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

MAF team departs for Philippines on March 6 to monitor ceasefire with MILF

IMT plays an important role in monitoring ceasefire between the Philippine Government and the MILF. Source: Rappler

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian International Monitoring Team - Mindanao 11 (IMT–M11) will depart for Mindanao in the Philippines on March 6 and 13 to continue monitoring and overseeing the ceasefire between the Philippines government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) chief Jen Tan Sri Roslan Saad told a press conference on March 4 that the team, comprising of 16 personnel will be in Mindanao for 12 months.

"The sending of IMT-M11 is a continuation of the IMT-M10 which has been serving there for 12 months since March 14, 2015.

Monday, 7 March 2016

Cambridge Pixel Supplies Radar Simulator Software to OSI Maritime for Malaysian Navy Contract

Cambridge Pixel, an award-winning developer of radar display, tracking and simulation subsystems, has supplied radar simulator software to OSI Maritime Systems (OSI), a world-leading provider of integrated navigation and tactical solutions for the naval market.

OSI is supplying an Integrated Bridge System to the Royal Malaysian Navy for use in the soon-to-be commissioned Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). The fully-functioning radar simulator supports OSI's need to perform integration activities in advance of installation and commissioning on the vessel, and includes comprehensive software emulation of the radar control interface.

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Malaysian Aviation body takes flight

Source: Qantas

PETALING JAYA: A new agency that will manage the economic side of Malaysia’s aviation industry has taken off.

The Malaysian Aviation Commis­sion (MAC) will have its eye on commercial flights here and, among others, manage airline licences, traffic rights and routes.

Speaking to The Star, its executive chairman Jen (Rtd) Tan Sri Abdullah Ahmad expressed surprise over his appointment.

“It’s a real surprise to me that the Government still considered me to lead this very important course in the aviation industry,” he said.

Formerly in the Royal Malaysian Air Force , Abdullah said he retired from service about 10 years ago.

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

RAKAM Is Best Communication Network For Maritime Community And Enforcement Agencies

KOTA KINABALU, Feb 29 (Bernama) -- The Maritime Community Friendly Interaction Programme (RAKAM) is the best communication and discussion network between the maritime community and enforcement agencies.

Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) Region 2 commander, Rear Admiral Datuk Khairul Anuar Yahya said via RAKAM, enforcement agencies including the RMN, marine police, Fisheries Department, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) and the maritime community could conduct discussions to solve problems in the community.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Malaysian Army To Get Used Blackhawks From Brunei

Sikorsky S-70A Black Hawk. Source: BorneoBulletin

KUALA LUMPUR: The army is expected to receive four used Sikorsky S-70A Black Hawk helicopters from Brunei this year, said army chief General Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor.

Raja Mohamed Affandi said those helicopters will strengthen the security in Sabah.

On top of that, he added that the army is also expecting the delivery of 56 units of locally-assembled Armour Vehicles 8x8 (AV8) in stages this year, which will be sent to Sabah.

"So far, we have 27 units of AV8 in Tawau, Sabah. We believe all of these assets including Black Hawks will provide full protection for people in the east of Sabah," said Raja Mohamed Affandi, during a media conference in conjunction with the 83rd Malaysian Armed Forces Day at Wisma Perwira Tentera Darat, Kem Perdana Sungai Besi. (New Straits Times)

Monday, 29 February 2016

Cambodia Requests 2 Warships From China

PLAN Type 054A Frigate (Source: Xinhuanet)

PHNOM PENH, Feb 25—Cambodian defense officials have requested two warships from China, saying they are needed to help Cambodia defend its maritime territory.

Cambodian Navy Admiral Tea Vinh asked for the two modern military vessels during a meeting with Chinese Rear Admiral Yu Manjian. Their talks in Phnom Penh followed joint maritime rescue drills conducted by the countries' naval forces, which ended Wednesday.

During the exercise, three Chinese ships - two frigates armed with guided missiles and a supply ship - were docked on display at the port of Sihanoukville.

Friday, 26 February 2016

Australia unveils ‘massive’ increase in defence spending

Operation FIJI ASSIST 2016. Source: Australian DOD

SYDNEY: Australia unveiled a massive new investment in the nation’s defence capabilities on Thursday to address what Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull called “high stakes” and “momentous times” in Asia.

Citing increased defence spending around the region and potential flashpoints in the South China Sea and the Korean peninsula, he said the government was committed to combating the most challenging strategic environment “we have faced in peacetime”.

“These are momentous times. The stakes are high. And as the opportunities expand, so does the cost of losing them,” Turnbull said in launching a new Defence White Paper in Canberra.

Thursday, 25 February 2016

The Edesix VideoBadge - Body Worn Cameras for Security Professionals

The VideoBadge series from Edesix consists of easy-to-use, robust and secure body worn cameras (BWC), capable of efficiently recording evidence-ready HD video and audio footage. Together with Edesix’s custom developed VideoManager software, these BWCs offer frontline workers the capability to deter aggression, capture evidential footage and store & share data from a multitude of locations.

Edesix’s VideoBadge Series consists of the VideoBadge VB-100, VB-200 and VB-300, these unique BWCs, often styled as an ID holder, were designed to meet the daily needs of the frontline worker. Each badge is fully encrypted, has day and night recording capability along with a comprehensive audit trail, ensuring evidential footage is protected from camera to court.

Sunday, 21 February 2016

Malaysia's DPM: Militants can't come home

KUCHING - Over 130 Malaysians who are now in Syria and Iraq fighting for the Islamic State (IS) will not be allowed to return home, said Datuk Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The Deputy Prime Minister said police were working with Interpol to ensure that these militants do not come back to Malaysia.

"The decision to bar them from returning home is to safeguard the country's peace and stability," said Dr Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister.

Friday, 19 February 2016

BHIC gets three-year extension to service Navy’s helicopters

RMN Fennec. Source: Airbus Helicopters 

KUALA LUMPUR: Boustead Heavy Industries Corp Bhd’s (BHIC) subsidiary BHIC AeroServices Sdn Bhd has received a three-year extension worth an additional RM30.8mil on its in-service support (ISS) contract for six Royal Malaysian Navy’s Fennec AS555SN helicopters.

BHIC told Bursa Malaysia that BHIC AeroServices previously had a three-year contract totaling RM32.4mil, expiring last month, and the consideration under the letter of agreement (LOA) and extended LOA had been revised to RM63.2mil.

The ISS contract extension is effective from Feb 7, 2016.

BHIC AeroServices is a joint venture between BHIC’s unit BHIC Defence Technologies Sdn Bhd (51%), Prestige Pillar Sdn Bhd (30%) and Airbus Helicopters Malaysia Sdn Bhd (19%).

BHIC shares were last traded on Monday at RM1.80.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Obama, SE Asian leaders seek resolution to maritime disputes

Source: San Diego Tribune

RANCHO MIRAGE, California: US President Barack Obama and the leaders of Southeast Asia called Tuesday for peaceful resolution of the region’s maritime disputes as they concluded a summit in California. 

Obama told a news conference that disputes must be resolved by legal means, including a case brought by the Philippines challenging China’s sweeping claims over most of the South China Sea. China has refused to take part in the proceedings, but Obama said parties to the UN law of the seas are obligated to respect the ruling, expected later this year. 

Obama has been hosting 10 leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, in the US for the first time. That sends a subtle message to China that the US remains an important force in the region. But the leaders’ joint statement after two days of talks avoided direct reference to China, reflecting the careful path that Asean members tread in their diplomacy with the world powers. 

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Ministry sets up brigade to beef up border security

Source: Asian Border Traveller

LUNDU: Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein has announced the setup of the Malaysian Army’s five-battalion-strong 31st Border Brigade, which will be based in Bintulu, to tighten border and national security.

The formation of this brigade would strengthen control and security along the borders of Sabah and Sarawak—Kalimantan, Indonesia, stretching 2,019.5km, he said at a press conference after visiting the Joint Border Post of Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM) and Indonesian National Army (TNI) at Biawak nere here yesterday.

Monday, 15 February 2016

Malaysia pursues diplomatic solution to Chinese coastguard vessels near Sarawak

Gambar hiasan. Source: Internet
KUCHING - Malaysia will continue to pursue a diplomatic solution to the presence of Chinese coastguard vessels near Beting Patinggi Ali off the Sarawak coast.

Defence Minister Datuk Hishammuddin Hussein said the situation was under control as diplomatic efforts were ongoing to resolve the issue.

"The diplomatic channel for handling territorial issues in the South China Sea comes under Wisma Putra. For the Defence Ministry and armed forces, we will wait for instructions but we will also continue our efforts through military diplomacy," he told reporters after visiting the Heroes Grave here recently.

Friday, 12 February 2016

Hisham: Sabah security sufficient to thwart IS threat

Sabah. Source: Internet

KUCHING: Sufficient measures have been taken to beef up security in Sabah to face the Islamic State (IS) threat, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said.

The Defence Minister, who is in Sarawak on a three-day working visit, said the best efforts had been put in to implement the measures in Sabah.

They include refurbishing two offshore oil platforms as offshore bases, upgrading the Hawk aircraft stationed in Sabah and equipping Blackhawk and Nuri helicopters with weapons.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Cubic to Continue Supporting Simulation Training at the Joint Multinational Simulation Center with $33.7 Million Contract Award

Joint Multinational Simulation Center

SAN DIEGO – February 10, 2016 – Cubic Global Defense (CGD), a business unit of Cubic Corporation , announced the award of a five-year, $33.7 million contract to support the U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR) Joint Multinational Simulation Center (JMSC), headquartered in Grafenwoehr, Germany; and the USAREUR Joint Multinational Readiness Center (JMRC) headquartered in Hohenfels, Germany. 

Continuing the current five-year contract, Cubic will maintain its role in assisting the JMSC with the execution of Mission Rehearsal Exercises (MRE) and training events; constructive simulation training for joint, combined, NATO and partner-nation units and leaders; and combatant Commanders’ engagement strategies.

Wednesday, 10 February 2016

Saudi envoy lauds Malaysia’s role in combating terrorism

Police officers from the Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division. Source: The Star

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 7 — The authorities’ recent success in detaining terror suspects and Islamic State supporters, received praise from Saudi Arabian envoy Fahad Abdullah Al-Rashid, who felt that in this regard Malaysia could somewhat contribute towards the Saudi Arabia-led alliance of 34 Muslim nations in combating terrorism.

The ambassador to Malaysia said that this country was an important and advanced Islamic nation, not only in terms of its military but also its intelligence unit.

“Malaysia’s strength in the intelligence unit is highly welcomed in this alliance,” he told Bernama in a recent interview.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Launch of military blimp delayed

Example of an aerostat. Source: Raytheon

Safety concerns have, for now, grounded plans by the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) to fly a radar-equipped balloon that can spot hostile threats coming from as far as Malacca.

The 55m-long helium-filled military blimp, known as an aerostat, was supposed to be airborne early last year to watch over Singapore.

But its launch was delayed because the giant balloon's United States-based manufacturer TCOM has failed to meet the RSAF's safety and operational requirements, The Sunday Times has learnt.

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

GOF to reinforce state’s Border Security Agency

Pic: Wikipedia

SIBU: General Operations Force (GOF) has been enlisted to assist the Border Security Agency (BSA) to add more bite in curbing border crimes, says Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

“BSA has been upgraded administratively to replace the Smuggling Prevention Unit (UPP) and we have absorbed GOF to be in BSA.

“For now, we have mobilised (BSA) along borders in the northern Peninsula in the early stage.

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

MMEA ups security with armed forces on vessels

Pic: The Star

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has upped the ante in the battle against any future hijackings at sea by placing armed personnel on vessels. 

Its director-general, Datuk Ahmad Puzi Ab Kahar, said the placement of armed officers on vessels is determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on whether the ships could be a “possible target” for hijackers.


Mesa, Ariz., February 1, 2015 – MD Helicopters, Inc. (MDHI) is pleased to announce that it succeeded in its bid to supply six (6) MD 530G Scout Attack Helicopters to Malaysia’s Ministry of Defense. MDHI will deliver the launch helicopters to Malaysian Army Aviation (Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat; PUTD) beginning in the fourth quarter of 2016, with the full fleet to deliver by the end of Q1 2017. 

With this installation, MD Helicopters becomes the only rotorcraft original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to introduce and field two new Scout Attack Helicopter Programs, each within 12-months from award. 

Friday, 29 January 2016

Singapore to keep contributing to global anti-terrorism effort: Ng Eng Hen

SINGAPORE: The Republic’s military will carry on deploying resources to the international effort against terrorism as it directly contributes to Singapore’s safety, said Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen on Thursday (Jan 28).

Dr Ng was responding in Parliament to questions from MP Alex Yam for updates on the nation’s involvement in the global anti-ISIS coalition.

The House was first informed in November 2014 that the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) would support the multi-national coalition against the extremist threat posed by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Dr Ng recalled. Since then, there have been attacks in Paris, Istanbul and recently Jakarta. Along with the arrest of the 27 radicalised Bangladeshis in Singapore, these are “unfortunate but stark examples that underscore a truth”, he said.

Taiwan president visits island in disputed South China Sea

TAIPEI: Taiwan’s president, defying criticism from key ally the United States, visited to an island holding in the disputed South China Sea on Thursday and called for peaceful development in the increasingly tense region. 

Accompanied by about 30 staff members, Ma Ying-jeou (MAH YEENG JOH) left the capital Taipei early in the morning aboard an air force C-130 cargo plane bound for Taiping Island, also known as Itu Aba. Taiping lies in the Spratly island group, an area where Taiwan shares overlapping claims with China, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines. The city state of Brunei also claims a part of the South China Sea. 

Taiping is the largest naturally occurring island in the area, but has recently been eclipsed in size by man-made islands created by China out of reefs and shoals. 

Thursday, 28 January 2016

The admiral in charge of US Navy intelligence has not been allowed to see military secrets for years

For more than two years, the Navy's intelligence chief has been stuck with a major handicap: He's not allowed to know any secrets.

Vice Adm. Ted "Twig" Branch has been barred from reading, seeing or hearing classified information since November 2013, when the Navy learned from the Justice Department that his name had surfaced in a giant corruption investigation involving a foreign defense contractor and scores of Navy personnel.

Worried that Branch was on the verge of being indicted, Navy leaders suspended his access to classified materials. They did the same to one of his deputies, Rear Adm. Bruce F. Loveless, the Navy's director of intelligence operations.

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

MILF forms task force to fight off recruitment for ISIS

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) said it has formed a task force to counter the recruitment activities being conducted in the name of the Islamic State in Central Mindanao and nearby areas.

Mohagher Iqbal, MILF chief negotiator, said the formation of the task force came in the wake of confirmed reports that some personalities, claiming to have links with IS, have been convincing people in such areas as Cotabato, Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur to support and join their cause for the establishment of the Islamic caliphate.

“The recruitment activities as well the video of their training that came out were authentic,” Iqbal said.

Navy boat keeps many illegals at bay: Chief

Sandakan: The number of foreign boats detected or attempted influx by illegals into the State's waters has seen a significant reduction since the auxiliary naval vessel, Tun Azizan, arrived at the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) here in June last year.

Navy Chief Admiral Datuk Seri Ahmad Kamarulzaman Ahmad Badaruddin said he was happy with the performance of the vessel as a base for frontline operations.

"Numerous entry attempts by illegal foreigners have been stopped since the vessel took base in waters off here," he said during his visit to the vessel docked in Berhala waters, on Saturday.

Thousands of Indonesian elite soldiers sent to hunt for Santoso in the forest

Thousands of Indonesian Military (TNI) special forces officers have been deployed to Poso, Central Sulawesi, to join the manhunt for East Indonesia Mujahidin (MIT) leader Santoso.

The elite troops joined police units, such as the Mobile Brigade and counterterrorism unit Densus 88, that had earlier joined Operation Tinombala.

The soldiers arrived in Palu and Poso from Jakarta on board Indonesian Air Force planes and then continued their journey to Poso by car, while others arrived on naval ships directly from Surabaya to Poso.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

MISC delivers new auxiliary vessel to the Royal Malaysian Navy

MISC Berhad (MISC) last Friday handed over to the Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) the Naval Auxiliary Vessel BUNGA MAS LIMA (BM5), joining the RMN’s current fleet that will be deployed to safeguard the safety of Malaysian waters and strengthen the RMN’s future maritime defense strategy, MISC said in a press release.

A ceremony to commemorate the handing over of the vessel was held recently at the RMN Kota Kinabalu Navy Base, Sabah and attended by representatives from MISC and the RMN. The event was graced by the presence of YBhg. Admiral Dato’ Seri Ahmad Kamarulzaman Ahmad Badaruddin, Chief of Navy and Mr. Yee Yang Chien, President/CEO of MISC.

Monday, 25 January 2016

Tun Razak's Legacy extends to nation's defence and security

IT was a great honour and privilege for me to have been invited to attend The Legacy of Leadership Special Commemorative Seminar on Tun Abdul Razak Hussein on Jan 14. It was most refreshing to hear Tun Razak’s great achievements during his tenure as Malaysia’s second prime minister. 

I do not intend to repeat what was said at the seminar, but suffice for me to add that every one should know and understand his legacy. Speakers extolled various aspects of his nation-building strategy that earned him the title Bapa Pembagunan (Father of Development). 

Friday, 22 January 2016

Security agencies urged to improve intelligence gathering

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 19: While co-operation with all security agencies patrolling Malaysian waters is ongoing, there is a need to improve on intelligence gathering, said Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) Laksamana Datuk Seri Ahmad Kamarulzaman Badaruddin.

“Information sharing and patrols must also be done effectively,” he told reporters during a courtesy call from the Pakistan Navy chief of Naval Staff Adm Muhammad Zakaullah at Wisma Pertahanan recently.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Developing the Rooivalk Mk2 would tick many vital boxes

THE South African Department of Defence is considering whether to restart the Rooivalk project, to develop an upgraded version of the strike helicopter for the South African Air Force and perhaps for export.

That will trigger noise, particularly from those who believe the Rooivalk was an unmitigated disaster. 

Objective analysis suggests otherwise, as has become clear from a recent study of the project commissioned by the Department of Public Enterprises to draw lessons for future major projects.

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Jakarta attacks could mark start of ISIS campaign in Southeast Asia

Last week's deadly attacks in Jakarta could mark the start of a violent campaign by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in South-east Asia unless more is done to counter the group, experts have warned.

ISIS has claimed responsibility for the gun and bomb attacks that ripped through a busy commercial district of the Indonesian capital, leaving four civilians dead and more than 20 injured.

It could have been a lot bloodier, said Dr Rohan Gunaratna, head of the International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research in Singapore, if Indonesian security forces had not arrested more than a dozen militants over the past two months, dismantling two terror cells in the process.

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Najib: More police, army patrols to assure security

PUTRAJAYA: There will be increased police and military presence in public and tourist areas to assure the people of their safety.

This is among the decisions made by the National Security Council, which met on Tuesday to discuss the country's security following the terror attacks which took place around major cities around the world.

Closer to home, a terror attack by the Islamic State occured in Jakarta last week, killing at least eight people.

Monday, 18 January 2016

Hisham: Armed forces ready to be deployed in fight against terrorism

GENTING HIGHLANDS: The military is ready to deploy its assets to specific locations in the country to deal with threats by the Daesh militant group, if required by the National Security Council (NSC), said Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein.

The Defence Minister said the issue of Daesh-led terrorist attacks required careful discussions, and the need to involve military personnel should be decided by the NSC chaired by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

South China Sea? For Beijing, Taiwan is the No. 1 security issue

TAIPEI (Reuters) - For China, whose President Xi Jinping is already taking an increasingly muscular approach to claims in the East and South China Sea, the question of Taiwan trumps any other of its territorial assertions in terms of sensitivity and importance.

After eight years of calm in what had been one of Asia's powder kegs, the landslide election of an independence-leaning opposition leader, President-elect Tsai Ing-wen, has thrust Taiwan back into the spotlight as one of the region's most sensitive security issues.

Friday, 15 January 2016

RMAF to take delivery of two more Airbus A400M this year

PETALING JAYA, January 13: The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) will be taking delivery of two more Airbus A400M transport aircraft this year, in April and November.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein said RMAF now was already in possession of two Airbus A400M.

"Today RMAF took delivery of the second A400M to meet the country's defence needs.

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

China given second warning by Vietnam

HANOI: Vietnam has issued its second rebuke in a week to Beijing, accusing its northern neighbour of “threatening peace” after more Chinese aircraft landed on a contested reef in the South China Sea.

Chinese state media on Wednesday said two civilian planes landed on one of the islands in the Fiery Cross reef in the disputed Spratly Islands, which are claimed by Hanoi but controlled by Beijing.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Philippines Congress proposes retail bond to fund military modernisation

Congress on Monday asked the Philippine government to study a proposal to issue a P150 billion ($3.2 billion) retail bond to fund a long-term military modernization plan to secure its strategic reserves in the South China Sea.

Arnel Ty, deputy minority leader at the lower house of Congress, said Congress will ask the Treasury to consider a bond issue to enable Filipinos to save and at the same time help secure the Philippines’ maritime borders against China’s rapid expansion in the South China Sea.

Monday, 11 January 2016

Current regulations leave RI airspace unprotected - TNI AU Spokesperson

The Indonesian Air Force has argued that the government should pass new regulations to protect the nation’s skies, claiming that foreign planes often entered Indonesian airspace without permission.

“Their is an idea that Indonesia’s airspace is open and not exclusive at all, as many non-scheduled foreign aircraft enter our airspace freely,” Air Force spokesperson Rear Marshal Dwi Badarmanto said in Jakarta recently.

The continuing surge of piracy in South East Asia

The surge of piracy in South-East Asia waters continues as ships passing the Straits of Malacca and Singapore are falling victim to acts of piracy.

Whilst Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia operate anti-piracy patrols in the area, it has limited resources. The sheltered coast and islands also makes it easier for robbers to operate. As piracy rampages on, Indonesia and Malaysia has taken efforts to jointly increase security.

By far, the most significant incident suggests activities going beyond the usual act of armed robbery or theft on board ship.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Arms buried at invasion site

Lahad Datu: A cache of rusted weapons and ammunitions was found buried under a former residential area in Kampung Tanduo here, Monday, raising eyebrows among security forces as to its origins.

According to State Police Commissioner Datuk Abdul Rashid Harun, all the weapons were badly damaged and unusable. Judging by their condition, it is believed that they have been kept underground for more than two years.

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

China lands 1st civilian plane on disputed islands, sparks neighbors' military fears

A test flight by a civilian plane landed on an island in the South China Sea, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said. It’s the first time the country has done so in the disputed Spratly Islands. Tensions are now high with neighboring Vietnam and the Philippines.

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at the weekend the test flight of a non-military aircraft was intended to check if the runway meets civilian aviation standards and fell “completely within China's sovereignty,” according to Reuters.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

China restructures army aimed at efficiency

China has introduced major changes to the structure of its military as part of efforts to reinforce its armed forces and maximize their efficiency vis-à-vis potential threats.

President Xi Jinping said three new units were created “to realize the Chinese dream of a strong military, and a strategic step to establish a modern military system with Chinese characteristics.”

He said the Chinese army needs to optimize its structure and composition, expedite its transformation from a regional defense force to an international combat one.

Monday, 4 January 2016

Our national security illusions - Nurul Izzah

THE world is witnessing unprecedented rising violence although formal declarations of war are few. Terrorism continues to claim an ever-greater number of lives. It seems to be spreading, irrespective of religious, national or cultural identity.

Customarily, our immediate response to threats and incidents of terrorist violence is to enhance "security" measures with the hope of containing violent extremism. Unfortunately, terrorism continues to morph into newer niches, rendering many counter-measures largely ineffective.

This failure reminds us that perhaps we have not fully grasped the multiple dimensions of the "security" challenge.

Saturday, 2 January 2016

Malaysia’s last line of defence - History of the Unit Tindakhas (UTK)

ON Jan 1, 1975, some 100 men from the police force were grouped to form the elite Special Action Unit (Unit Tindakan Khas, or UTK, in Malay).

They were the best of the best – the strongest, toughest and bravest – specially hand-picked to carry out covert operations, take part in dangerous missions, and tackle any hostile situation.

The brainchild of then Inspector-General of Police Tun Hanif Omar, the UTK was formed to equip the Royal Malaysian Police with an elite squad should Malaysia fall victim to terror attacks.

Friday, 1 January 2016

Amid maritime disputes, China confirms building second carrier

BEIJING (Dec 31): After months of speculation, China confirmed on Thursday that it is building a second aircraft carrier to go with an existing one bought second-hand, as neighbours worry about Beijing's new assertiveness to claims in the South China Sea.

Defence Ministry spokesman Yang Yujun said the carrier had been designed in China and was being built in the port of Dalian. Foreign military analysts and Chinese media have for months published satellite images, photographs and news stories purporting to show the second carrier's development.
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