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  #31  
Old 14 Sep 12, 09:30
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  #32  
Old 16 Sep 12, 23:36
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what are the pros and cons of a rifle grenade? how come we don't see more of those in other armies?
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  #33  
Old 16 Sep 12, 23:53
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I think most users prefer an RPG! I think it also takes a certain amount of training to get proficient with a rifle grenade.

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Old 17 Sep 12, 04:51
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I all so wonder why other counties do not use the rifle grenade. It let's any rifle become a grenade launcher. they are a bit longer than your typical 40mm grenade though.
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  #35  
Old 17 Sep 12, 06:04
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Funny thing:
I thought the safety catch looked like the one in our assault rifles, and the gun looked a bit similar(not much, but some parts like the safety catch and sights). After quick googling the R4 is a variant of the Israeli Galil ARM, which in turn was influenced by the RK-62(Finnish assault rifle).
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Old 17 Sep 12, 13:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMan88 View Post
what are the pros and cons of a rifle grenade? how come we don't see more of those in other armies?
That might be a good question to ask in Weapons of War. I imagine it has a lot to do with the limited ballistic possibilities of the rifle grenade arrangement.
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  #37  
Old 26 Sep 12, 22:50
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If a major purpose of the South Africa army is to police and protect its borders and hinterlands from incursion by unsavory types, why not raise a squadron or two of mounted infantry?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragoons_of_Angola

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grey's_Scouts

Seems that low intensity operations in such a large region would suit mounted infantry well- lack of infrastructure and anti-tank mines hardly matter to a horse. Cheaper than an APC too, with less of a logistical load.
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Old 26 Sep 12, 23:02
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First you have to find some guys that aren't scared to get on a horse....How many people in South Africa ride horses a lot?

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  #39  
Old 26 Sep 12, 23:08
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Originally Posted by Pruitt View Post
First you have to find some guys that aren't scared to get on a horse....How many people in South Africa ride horses a lot?

Pruitt
Well, they won't be thrown into Stalingrad or Fallujah tomorrow, so we'll let training and a bit of on-the-job experience do that. How many Helicopter gunship pilots fly helicopters a lot before they joined the military?
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Old 27 Sep 12, 08:40
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We actually have both horse and motor cycle units.
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Old 27 Oct 12, 10:23
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http://www.sadefencereview2012.org/p...blications.htm
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Old 02 Feb 13, 01:08
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http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.ph...119&Itemid=255

http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.ph...les&Itemid=159

http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.ph...les&Itemid=159

http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.ph...les&Itemid=159
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Old 28 Feb 13, 11:06
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Not unlike the concept of joint operations, Special Forces (SF) are themselves a modern development, also dating to the Second World War.

The Soviet Union, followed by the Third Reich (Nazi Germany) , established parachute units in the 1930s; after seeing these troops in action in the Low Countries, Britain, then the US – and even South Africa – formed similar units.



The war also produced the US Rangers, Britain’s Special Air Services, Special Boat Section and Commandos as well as a range of other Special Forces familiar today. Special Forces are troops who have been specially selected, trained and equipped for employment in extraordinary circumstances and undertakings – in comparison to the bulk of troops who have not so been selected, trained or equipped and cannot be so employed.


Special Operations Forces — Those Active and Reserve Component forces of the Military Services
designated by the Secretary of Defence and specifically organised, trained, and equipped to conduct and support special operations.


US Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms definition of what they call Special Operations Forces.

As has been suggested, Special Forces are employed in extraordinary circumstances and for undertakings for which other troops are unsuitable. Based on US definitions, these are typically:
Special Operations: “Operations conducted in hostile, denied, or politically sensitive environments to achieve military, diplomatic, informational, and/or economic objectives employing military capabilities for which there is no broad conventional force requirement. These operations often require covert, clandestine, or low visibility capabilities. Special operations are applicable across the range of military operations.

They can be conducted independently or in conjunction with operations of conventional forces or other government agencies and may include operations through, with, or by indigenous or surrogate forces. Special operations differ from conventional operations in degree of physical and political risk, operational techniques, mode of employment, independence from friendly support, and dependence on detailed operational intelligence and indigenous assets.”1

Unconventional Warfare: “A broad spectrum of military and paramilitary operations, normally of long duration, predominantly conducted through, with, or by indigenous or surrogate forces who are organized, trained, equipped, supported, and directed in varying degrees by an external source. It includes, but is not limited to, guerrilla warfare, subversion, sabotage, intelligence activities, and unconventional assisted recovery.”2

Civil Affairs Activities: Activities performed or supported by civil affairs personnel that (1) enhance the relationship between military forces and civil authorities in areas where military forces are present; and (2) involve application of civil affairs functional specialty skills, in areas normally the responsibility of civil government, to enhance conduct of civil-military operations. Civil affairs personnel are designated Active and Reserve component forces and units organised, trained, and equipped specifically to conduct civil affairs activities and to support civil-military
operations.3

Psychological Operations: Planned operations to convey selected information and indicators to foreign audiences to influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behaviour of foreign governments, organisations, groups, and individuals. The purpose of psychological operations is to induce or reinforce foreign attitudes and behaviour favourable to the originator’s objectives.4


SA emphasis

The South African Special Forces have historically concentrated on strategic missions, mostly reconnaissance and direct action.

Reconnaissance: A mission undertaken to obtain, by visual observation or other detection methods, information about the activities and resources of an enemy or potential enemy, or to secure data concerning the meteorological, hydrographic, or geographic characteristics of a particular area.

Direct Action: Short-duration strikes and other small-scale offensive actions conducted as a special operation in hostile, denied, or politically sensitive environments and which employ specialised military capabilities to seize, destroy, capture, exploit, recover, or damage designated targets. Direct action differs from conventional offensive actions in the level of physical and political risk, operational techniques, and the degree of discriminate and precise use of force to achieve specific objectives.


US Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms definitions: Reconnaissance and Direct Action.



SA SF mandate and responsibilities

The Special Forces Brigade, as a strategic force, carries out special operations, independently or in co-operation with other State Departments or Services, to achieve national objectives, internally or externally, in peace or war. Comprising landward, airborne and waterborne capabilities, the Special Forces Brigade is an affordable, dynamic and effective force, which boasts specially trained personnel, and is equipped with specialist equipment. International recognition of the Special Forces capabilities makes the Special Forces a credible force that must be reckoned with.5


Why does South Africa have Special Forces?

South Africa established a Special Forces capability in 1968 in line with international military trends.6 “Initial planning and formation occurs, including studies of and visits to foreign Special Forces, formulation of appropriate structures and techniques for an African context, and formation and training of a core group of founder members.”7 The capability realised in 1972 with the establishment of 1 Reconnaissance Commando at the Infantry School at Oudtshoorn.


How are the SF currently organised?

The South African Special Forces’ current structure is the result of a series of reorganisations, as well as rationalisation and integration between 1992 and 19968. The close-knit community is organised as a “brigade”, consisting of a headquarters, a school, two regiments and a logistics unit. Both regiments are airborne qualified, with one specialising on seaward operations and the other landward.

SF Headquarters: The General Officer Commanding (GOC) Special Forces commands, controls and coordinates the activities of the various SF Regiments from a headquarters (HQ) located in the Swartkop Park nature reserve on the southwestern outskirts of Pretoria. Colloquially called “Speskop”9, the headquarters also houses the Special Forces’ operational planning as well as administrative support staffs.


4 SF Regiment, based at Langebaan, Saldanha Bay, along the west coast north of Cape Town, provides South Africa its seaward Special Forces capability. The unit was established at Langebaan in 1978. In 1995 the Regiment consisted of three operational commandos (companies) as well as a Special Forces Amphibious and Urban School.




5 SF Regiment, based at Phalaborwa in the east of the northern Limpopo Province, was established in Durban in 1976. After a sojourn at Duku Duku in northern KwaZulu-Natal, the unit moved into its present lines in 1980. Its post-2002 structure provides for two operational commandos and a training wing.





SF School: The Special Forces School, at Murrayhill, north of Pretoria, hosts the Special Forces pre-selection and selection courses, the basic operators training cycle, and many other Special Forces courses which qualified Operators attend throughout their career.10 The establishment was first formalised in 1976 as the Reconnaissance Commando School, later the Training Wing of 1 Reconnaissance Commando, based in Durban. The name was retained when 1 Reconnaissance Commando grew into 1 Reconnaissance Regiment (1 Special Forces Regiment from 1995). The Training Wing migrated to 5SF Regiment in 1997 when 1 SF Regiment laid down its colours. It became a stand-alone entity in 2002.

SF Supply Unit The SF Supply Unit, now at Wallmansthal, north of Pretoria, was initially part of Special Forces Headquarters. Its role, then and now, was to maintain all SF equipment and material, including those unique to the brigade. Between 1991 and 1995 the organisation was known as 1 Maintenance Unit.

In the SF regiments, leadership positions – especially at team (section) and group (platoon) level – have traditionally been dictated more by ability and experience than rank. This has resulted in Operators more senior in rank being assigned to groups or teams commanded by Operators junior to them in rank but more seasoned in operational experience or actual command.


Does this structure reflect the “boots on the ground”?

All Special Forces have consistently cited quality over quantity. As a result, Special Forces units tend to be smaller than similarly-named regular units. This is accentuated when considering that most Special Forces units include a non-operational supporting element.

In the case of the South African Special Forces, the figure that must be considered as baseline in determining whether the structure is appropriate to the number of “boots on the ground” is the number of operational Operators in each commando of each regiment.

Pic: The SF Operator's badge in silver.
The SANDF is understandably coy about the numbers; the more so as they appear to be on the lower side of what can be expected from so large a structure.

In 1978, a commando’s table of organisation and equipment (TO&E) provided for 21 officers and 100 other ranks. This included five officers and 29 other ranks in a small support group and equally small training wing.

A further 10 officers and two other ranks served in the headquarters. This left six officers and 69 other ranks organised into three Reconnaissance Groups (with a headquarters element of two officers and three other ranks) and four small teams, each ideally led by a Warrant Officer Class 1, with four operators under command.

That this was not always the case can be inferred from the above – that Operators more senior in rank have been assigned to groups or teams commanded by people junior to them in rank but more seasoned in operational experience.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that around the time of the World Summit on Sustainable Development (October 2002) there were only about 50 Operators available to support the police Special Task Force in protecting the conference and its dignitaries, including several heads of state and government.

It can be argued about 50 was all that was needed for the event, and more were available elsewhere, but this was the number that trained with the police in hostage release and similar urban tactics.

For training before such a high profile event one would expect the back-up to participate as well, even if they were not needed on the day. The age of some of the participants was also noteworthy: one warrant officer was in his 40s and several others were in their 30s. It is not unusual for Special Forces personnel to be older than their ordinary counterparts, but…

To conclude then, based on available TO&E, there were insufficient Operators for even one commando at that time. But at least five were provided for, in addition to training and headquarters posts that would have to be filled by more mature Operators. Recruiting standards are high and training tough as well as long in duration. Their capabilities and the times considered, more rather than less Special Forces rather than less are required.

During World War Two, the Germans preferred a scarcity of officers to a flood, arguing that it was better for troops to have no doubts about the quality and training of their leaders. This is clearly the route to follow in training more Operators.

The Special Forces has always been small – perhaps too small.

The Special Forces League calculated that by 1988, fewer than 480 applicants out of the more than 100,000 had survived the selection process and training cycle and graduated as qualified Operators. “Out of this number, more than 80 were killed in action during the Angolan war.”11 Five years later, by early 2003, the number of qualified Operators was still less than 900, of whom 200 were already deceased.

As the League observes, more people have successfully climbed Mount Everest. “During the entire Angolan war, the total strength of all the Special Forces Regiments combined was never more than 200 to 250 Operators at any one time, due to their killed in action and wounded in action statistics, retirements and resignations.”12

Following its nadir in 2002, a considerable effort was made in the rest of the decade to build up numbers, with up to two election courses being run in the later years of the decade. By 2009 the General Officer Commanding SF could say at a Joint Operations Division briefing that the formation was near full strength. It must be noted, however, that the SF is as secretive as ever and that the figures cannot be confirmed independently.



1 US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, Washington DC, 2005. The US special forces community includes units dedicated to this function. See Tom Clancy’s Special Forces, A Guided Tour of US Army Special Forces, Berkley Books, New York, 2001; and with General Carl Stiner (Retd), Shadow Warriors, Inside the Special Forces, Pan, London, 2003.
2 US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, Washington DC, 2005. The US special forces community includes units dedicated to this function.
3 Based on definitions derived from the above. The US Special Forces community includes units dedicated to this function.
4 US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms, Washington DC, 2005. The US Special Forces community includes units dedicated to this function.
5 DoD, Special Forces, www.careers.mil.za, accessed on September 26, 2005. Special Operations.com, http://www.specialoperations.com/For...de/Mandate.htm, accessed November 30, 2008, South African Special Forces Brigade, The Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_A...Forces_Brigade, accessed November 30, 2008.
6 According to the South African Special Forces League, www.recce.co.za, accessed September 25, 2005.
7 Ditto.
8 Special Operations.com, http://www.specialoperations.com/For...de/History.htm, accessed November 30, 2008.
9 Afrikaans: Spes+kop: “Spes” from “Spesiaal” (special) + “kop” (hill), literally Special Forces hill.
10 Special Forces League, www.recce.co.za, accessed, September 26, 2005.
11 Special Forces League, Facts and Figures, www.recce.co.za, accessed September 25, 2005.
12 Special Forces League, Facts and Figures, www.recce.co.za, accessed September 25, 2005. At the time there were three regular and one reserve SF Regiment (1 SF Regt (Durban) and 2 SF Regt, a Reserve unit based in Pretoria, have since been disestablished.)


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Old 28 Feb 13, 11:09
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Link ZA is a digital network protocol developed by Thales Advanced Engineering1, a South African company that should not be confused with Thales, the French multinational. It is now mandatory for all SANDF communications equipment to be Link ZA-compliant.

Explaining the need for Link ZA, Saab Grintek Communications CE Vincent Scholtz told defenceWeb commercial Internet protocols were “enormously inefficient.”

Military standard (MIL-STD) datalinks, by comparison, have to be robust, cope with drop-outs and be incredibly efficient as they are transferring data over military radio frequencies. Whereas a standard Ethernet can carry about 100 million bits a second, radios can only carry about 1000 bits a second – yet the need is the same, namely the speedy delivery of email, voice, files, documents, attachments, images and the like.

Link ZA, which cost “tens of millions of rand” to develop, is owned by the SA National Defence Force. “It allows SA a fair degree of independence with regard the security and control of military communications and data,” Scholtz adds. “We are not tied into foreign vendors and protocols we have no control over. Link ZA is something a lot of other second tier countries wish they had.”

Peter Hanley, one of Link ZA’s developers, says the protocol, as a subject is “incredibly dry, but like an Internet standard, it makes an awful lot of stuff work.” Hanley says South Africa set out to develop Link ZA after efforts to obtain the technology from abroad failed. NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, have been using MIL-STD datalinks for some decades but have, to date, refused to provide the technology. “We asked and were told we would never be allowed access” to NATO’s Links 11, 16 and 22, Hanley says. He adds that SA recently obtained the code for Link 11, which is 20 years old, but he didn’t disclose how.

The development of Link ZA started in the early 1990s. “We needed a standard, we could not find one so we set out to develop a Tactical Radio Data Communications Standard,” says Hanley. This only addressed part of the problem, so we developed the Combat Net Interoperability Standard (CNIS), of which Link ZA is part. It is now mandatory for all SANDF communications equipment to be Link ZA-compliant.”

Although the standard is proprietary, it is not parochial. “NATO MIL-STD 188-220 does a lot of what Link ZA does,” he says. Reflecting on the development costs, Hanley says the “development of standards are enormously, ferociously, expensive. It is to be avoided at all costs. Protocols look simple, but they are like icebergs. You only see the top 10% of the cost.”

He reckons it has been worth it for the SANDF. “Watching a communications system work is watching paint dry”. Since the standard stabilised two years ago, the SANDF gained access to a protocol that is fairly low cost from an implementation point-of-view and that can be modified to meet future needs,” Hanley says. “It allows them to easily and seamlessly exchange information which enhances command and control, it shortens the sensor to shooter time loop, thereby enhancing weapon control and it boosts situational awareness by helping answer the critical battlefield questions of ‘where am I?’, ‘where are my buddies?’, ‘where is the enemy?’, and ‘what next?’” For the artillery, it has brought down the time from when an observer spots a target to when the first round is fired at it from six to 10 minutes to just 90 seconds. “You can just about hit a moving truck,” says Hanley.

Hanley expects Link ZA to continue developing. “It will continue to evolve according to user requirements. It tries not to be prescriptive, but anarchy is not allowed either. The ultimate goal is automatic network establishment and network management. “When you log onto the Internet you don’t care how it was established or is managed. You just want it to work. That’s our ultimate goal, to make communications easier, simpler and faster.”

One practical application of Link ZA is as catalyst for the SA Air Force’s BAE Systems Mk 120 Hawk LIFT radar-simulation system (RSS), which uses a radio-frequency network established among as many as eight aircraft engaged in an exercise. Each aircraft constantly transmits its position via a Link ZA datalink, and each aircraft's mission computer calculates the positions of the other aircraft relative to itself. That picture is displayed as a real-time radar image on one of each pilot’s three multifunction displays (MFD).

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Old 28 Feb 13, 11:23
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The South African Infantry Corps (SAIC) is the single largest professional group within the SA National Defence Force (SANDF), with some suggesting that as many as one in three SANDF Regular Force personnel are members of this corps.



The infantry is the oldest of the branches and can be said to date back to that time and place in prehistory where the first group of people took up stick, stone and spear to defend against or attack their enemy, to seize land or defend their own.

Pic: A 6 SA Infantry Battalion (Airmobile) machine gun platoon detail crews a Browning 12.7mm heavy machine gun. A motorised, airmobile and parachute infantry battalion fields four of these weapons in its machine gun platoon. The platoon also musters six Denel Y3 40mm automatic grenade launchers.

Author James F Dunnigan1 points out that the infantry, by definition, takes the brunt of the fighting. “It’s always been that way … and this won’t change.”

Despite this, and the presence of infantry in South Africa from the earliest times, the infantry only gained a permanent home in the SAIC as recently as January 1954. Prior to that responsibility for the branch was passed from pillar to post.

A SA Army recruitment poster notes that the infantry is the nucleus of any army and as a result it is the largest fighting corps in the SA Army. “The infantry is expected to attack the enemy under any conditions; this requires courage, fitness and initiative. In order to attack the enemy with confidence, weapon training and field craft is the most important part of training.”

Mission: To close with, and destroy the enemy; to hold or defend ground.

Corps colours: Green and black

Beret colour: Green (motorised, mechanised and light infantry); maroon (parachute infantry)

Collar badge: Springbok head

Motto: Gladium Practamus (Wielders of the Sword)

Brief history in SA: Despite the presence of infantry in South Africa from the earliest times, the infantry gained a permanent home in the SAIC only as recently as January 1954. Prior to that responsibility for the branch was passed from pillar to post.


Structure

All infantry units are assigned to the SA Army Infantry Formation under the charge of Major General Themba Nkabinde.

Nkabinde answers directly to SA Army chief Lt Gen Solly Shoke. Assisting Nkabinde as General Officer Commanding the SA Army Infantry Formation is a
Chief of Staff
Chaplain
Formation Warrant Officer
Personal Staff

Nkabinde has been GOC since 2004. The current chief of staff is Brigadier General Krubert Nel.

The formation is structured as follows:
SA Army Infantry School, Oudtshoorn2
Senior Staff Officer (SSO) Specialised Infantry
Parachute Infantry
44 Parachute Regiment (Regt), Bloemfontein
1 Parachute (Para) Battalion (Bn), Bloemfontein
3 Para Bn, Pretoria
44 Pathfinder Platoon, Bloemfontein
101 Air Supply Unit3, Pretoria/Bloemfontein
Training Wing, Bloemfontein
Air Assault
6 South African Infantry (SAI) Bn (Air Assault), Grahamstown
1st City Regiment (Air Assault), Grahamstown
Prince Alfred’s Guard (Air Assault), Port Elizabeth
Seaborne
9 SAI Bn (Seaborne), Cape Town
Internal Stability
21 SAI Bn (Internal Stability), Johannesburg
Rand Light Infantry, Johannesburg
Regt Oos Rand, Germiston
Regt Paul Kruger, Krugersdorp
SSO Mechanised Infantry
1 SAI Bn, Bloemfontein
8 SAI Bn4, Upington
1st Bn, Regt de la Rey, Potchefstroom
1st Bn, Regt Northern Transvaal, Pretoria
Cape Town Highlanders, Cape Town
Durban Light Infantry, Durban
Regt Westelike Provincie, Cape Town
Witwatersrand Rifles, Johannesburg
SSO Motorised Infantry North
2 SAI Bn, Zeerust
7 SAI Bn, Phalaborwa
15 SAI Bn, Thohoyandou (Limpopo)
10 SAI Bn, Mafikeng
Regt Botha, Barberton
Regt Christiaan Beyers, Polokwane
The Johannesburg Regt, Johannesburg
The SA Irish, Johannesburg
The Transvaal Scottish, Johannesburg
Tshwane Regt, Pretoria
SSO Motorised Infantry South
4 SAI Bn, Middelburg (Mpumalanga)
5 SAI Bn, Ladysmith
14 SAI Bn, Mthatha (Eastern Cape)
121 SAI Bn, Mtubatuba (KwaZulu-Natal)
Buffalo Volunteer Rifles, East London
Cape Town Rifles (Duke’s), Cape Town
Durban Regt, Durban
Kimberley Regt, Kimberley
Natal Carbineers, Pietermaritzburg
Regt Bloemspruit, Bloemfontein
Regt Piet Retief, Port Elizabeth


Organogram


Battalion Headquarters [7 officers, 39 soldiers]
Battalion Commander (Lieutenant Colonel)
2nd-in-Command (Major)
Regimental Sergeant Major (Warrant Officer Class 1)

Unit Staff
US 1 Personnel
US2 Intelligence/Security
US3 Operations/Training
US4 Logistics
US5 Finance

Battalion Headquarters Platoon [2 officers, 62 soldiers]
Sniper Section
Protection Section
Reconnaissance Section
Observation Section
Regimental Police Section

Attached elements
Light Workshop Troop [1 officer, 18 soldiers]
Signals Troop [1 officer, 18 soldiers]
Medical Platoon [x officers, x soldiers]

Rifle Company (x 3) [5 officers, 137 soldiers]
Headquarters [2 officers, 22 soldiers]
Company Commander (Major)
2nd-in-Command (Captain)
Company Sergeant Major (Warrant Officer Class 2)
Company Sergeant Quartermaster (Staff Sergeant)
Mortar section [0 officers, 10 soldiers]
Headquarters [0 officers, 4 soldiers]
Section commander (Sergeant)
Detachment (x 3) [0 officers, 2 soldiers] {3 x 60mm M4 Patrol Mortar}
Platoon (x 3) [1 officer, 35 soldiers]
Headquarters [1 officer, 5 soldiers]
Platoon Commander (Lieutenant, 2nd Lieutenant)
Platoon Sergeant (Sergeant)
Section (x 3) [0 officers, 10 soldiers] {1 x GPMG, 9 x R4 AR}
Section Leader (Corporal)
Machine Gun Group
Section 2nd-in-Command (Lance Corporal)
Machine Gun Number 1
Machine Gun Number 2
Rifle Group
Rifleman Number 1
Rifleman Number 2
Rifleman Number 3
Rifleman Number 4
Rifleman Number 5
Rifleman Number 6


Support Company
Headquarters [2 officers, 4 soldiers]
Quartermaster Platoon [1 officer, 11 soldiers]
Transport Platoon [1 officer, 9 soldiers]
Catering Platoon [0 officers, 16 soldiers]
Antitank Platoon [5 officers, 64 soldiers]
Headquarters
Group (x 4) [1 officer, 15 soldiers]
Recoilless Gun Section {1 x M40A1 106mm recoilless gun}
Missile Section {1 x MBDA Milan ADT3 antitank guided missile launcher}
Assault Pioneer Platoon [1 officer, 36 soldiers]
Headquarters
Section (x 3)
Machine Gun Platoon [1 officer, 41 soldiers]
Headquarters
Section (x4) {1 x Browning 12.7mm HMGi, 1 x Denel Y3 AGLii}
Mortar Platoon [5 officers, 103 soldiers]
Headquarters
Section (x 4)
Headquarters
Detachment (x 2) {2 x M3 81mm mortars}

Notes
The organisation of the motorised, mechanised, internal security, air assault and parachute infantry battalions are broadly similar, the mechanised battalion lacking a machine gun platoon in the support company and the internal security battalion lacking the same as well as other support weapons (mortars, antitank weapons and assault pioneers).
A battalion musters about 34 officers, 776 men, or 810 all ranks.
A company has nine rifle sections.
A battalion has nine rifle platoons and 27 rifle sections.
A battalion has at its disposal eight M3 81mm mortars, 27 M4 60mm patrol mortars, six infantry antitank guns (M40A1 or Ratel 90), six antitank guided missile launchers (MBDA Milan ADT3 or Ratel ZT3), four Browning 12.7mm HMG and four Denel Y3 AGL (not in the mechanised infantry), 27 7.62mm GPMG and nine RPG7 rocket propelled grenade launchers (one per rifle platoon).
The number of vehicles is dependent on the type of unit and role. A parachute or air assault battalion deployed by air will largely be dependent on the 104 LMT Gecko airborne amphibious 8x8 light rapid deployment logistic vehicles assigned to 44 Parachute Regiment. The number deployed will depend on the airlift available. By some accounts the F-Echeloniii should include 88 A-Vehiclesiv, but the numbers can be higher. In September 2008 the motorised 5 SAI Bn deployed 113 Casspir armoured personnel and weapon carriers to a force preparation exercise (Seboka) and the mechanised 8 SAI Bn deployed 107 Ratels. The Av- and Bvi-Echelons, fully mobilised, can muster up at least another 90 B-Vehiclesvii of various types. For Seboka 5 SAI deployed an under-strength combined echelon of 41 logistics trucks, pantries, diesel and water bunkers, mobile showers and recovery vehicles. 8 SAI’s echelon’s mustered 38 vehicles.



1 James F Dunnigan, How to Make War, A Comprehensive Guide to Modern Warfare in the 21st Century, 4th Edition, Quill, New York, 2003.
2 Units marked in BLUE are regular fulltime service and those in RED are Reserve Force
3 Attached Ordnance Service Corps (OSC) unit.
4 Recently absorbed 61 Mechanised Infantry Battalion.
i Heavy Machine Gun
ii Automatic Grenade Launcher
iii F echelon - Essential men and vehicles required to fight a battle.
iv A vehicle - Hard-skinned vehicle, a robust armoured vehicle which is developed to transport offensive weapons and personnel in combat.
v A echelon – 1. Vehicles and stores of a unit required for hour-to-hour replenishment of F echelon, under unit control. 2. Personnel and vehicles ready to provide immediate logistic support to the troops in action.
vi B echelon - Vehicles and men of a unit not required at short notice in battle those not included in F and A echelons.

vii B vehicle - Soft-skinned vehicle which is specially designed or modified for military use, or transformed for protection against mines. Contrast: C vehicle - Equipment or construction used for earth moving, handling of equipment and related civil engineering tasks. D vehicle - Standard commercial vehicle used in the SANDF without modification for the transport of goods or one or more persons.


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