Malaysian Army


Malaysian Army
Malaysian Army
Tentera Darat Malaysia
Malaysian Army Flag.png Tenteradaratlogo.jpg
Flag and Crest of Malaysian Army
http://army.mod.gov.my
Active since 23 January 1933, but started under Penang rifle voluteers in 1861
Country  Malaysia
Allegiance Government of Malaysia
Branch Malaysian Armed Forces
Type Army
Role Defence and Dominance of Malaysia's soil
Motto Gagah Setia (English: Strong and Loyal)
Colors       Red and       Gold
Anniversaries 23 January
Engagements World War II
Malayan Emergency
Indonesia–Malaysia confrontation
United Nations Operation in the Congo
13 May Incident
Communist Insurgency War
Battle of Mogadishu
Kosovo War
United Nations Iran-Iraq Military Observer Group
Operation Astute
MALCON-UNIFIL
United Nations Protection Force
ISAF, Afghanistan
Commanders
Supreme Commander Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin
Chief of Army
Panglima Tentera Darat
(Gen) Dato' Sri Zulkifeli Bin Mohd Zin

The Malaysian Army (Malay: Tentera Darat Malaysia) is the land component of the Malaysian Armed Forces. Steeped in British Army traditions, the Malaysian Army does not carry the title ‘royal’ (diraja) as do the Royal Malaysian Air Force and the Royal Malaysian Navy. Instead, the title is bestowed on selected army corps and regiments who have been accorded the honour by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, who is the Supreme Commander of the Malaysian Armed Forces.

Contents

History

Circa October 1941, Malay Regiment operatives at a bayonet practice before the Battle of Singapore.

The first military units in Malaysia can be traced back to the Malay States Volunteer Rifles which existed from 1915 to 1936. The birth of the Malaysian Army came about when the Federal Council of the Federated Malay States passed the Malay Regiment Bill on 23 January 1933. This allowed the initial recruitment of 25 males for the First Experimental Malay Company on 1 March 1933. Major G. McI. S. Bruce of the Lincolnshire Regiment was the first Commanding Officer.

By 1 January 1935, the Experimental Company became The Malay Regiment with a complement of 150 men. A battalion was formed on 1 January 1938 and eventually a second battalion on 1 December 1941.

The 1st Bn Malay Regiment was famous for its defence of Opium Hill or Bukit Chandu in Singapore. The ‘Battle of Opium Hill’ on 14 February 1942 involved 42 soldiers commanded by Lt. Adnan Bin Saidi who defended their position against attack from the 18th Division of the Japanese Imperial Army under Lt. Gen. Renya Mutaguchi. After World War II and during the Malayan Emergency, the number of battalions was increased to 7 in the early 50s.

The Kor Armor DiRaja (Royal Armoured Corps) can trace its roots to the formation on 1 September 1952 of the Federation Reconnaissance Squadron. It was later merged with the Federation Regiment to form the Federation Reconnaissance Corps. The name underwent a few transformations from the Malaysian Reconnaissance Corps (16 September 1967), Royal Malaysian Reconnaissance Corps (May 1979) to Royal Cavalry Corps (December 1979) and finally to Kor Armor DiRaja (Royal Armoured Corps) on 8 December 1986.

Organisation and structure

See also Supreme Commander of the Malaysian Armed Forces

The Malaysian Army is currently organised into four Divisions and are placed under the Field Army Headquarters. Three of which (the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Divisions) are based in Peninsular Malaysia and the fourth (the 1st Division) is based in East Malaysia. The Grup Gerak Khas (Special Forces group), 10th Parachute Brigade and the Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat (army aviation) are independent formations and directly subordinate to the Chief of the Army.

The Malaysian Army currently has 17 Corps or Regiments in the organisation. These are grouped into 3 main components, the Combat Element, The Combat Support Element and the Support Elements.

Soldiers from the Malaysian Army secure a portion of jungle after arriving in a landing craft, air cushion, (LCAC) vehicle from USS Boxer (LHD-4) during Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) Malaysia.

Rank Structure

The Malaysian Army uses a rank structure [1] inherited from the British Army. the Malaysian Army rank structure has 17 levels from Private (Prebet) to General (Jeneral). These ranks are divided into 2 groups - Officer (Pegawai) and Other Ranks (Lain-Lain Pangkat) which includes the Non-Commissioned Officer (Pegawai Tanpa Tauliah) ranks.

Officers

Officers are sub-divided into 3 groups:-

Senior Officers This group consists of officers holding the ranks of Lieutenant Colonel (Leftenan Kolonel), Colonel (Kolonel), Brigadier General (Brigedier Jeneral), Major General (Mejar Jeneral), Lieutenant General (Leftenan Jeneral) and General (Jeneral)

Field Officers Field Officers are officers holding the rank of Major (Mejar)

Junior Officers This group consists of Second Lieutenant (Leftenan Muda), Lieutenant (Leftenan) and Captain (Kapten) grade officers.

Other Ranks

This group begins at Private (Prebet) and works its way up to Warrant Officer I (Pegawai Waran I). This is further subdivided into 3 groups.

Senior NCO (PTT Kanan) This grouping includes NCOs holding the rank of Sergeant (Sarjan), Staff Sergeant (Staff Sarjan), Warrant Officer II (Pegawai Waran II) and Warrant Officer I (Pegawai Waran I).

Junior NCO (PTT Rendah) This grouping includes NCOs holding the rank of Lance Corporal (Lans Koperal) and Corporal (Koperal).

Private (Prebet) Private soldiers in the Malaysian Army do not wear any rank devices on their uniform. There are no distinctions made between junior or senior Privates.

Corps and regiments

Combat elements

  • Rejimen Askar Melayu DiRaja (Royal Malay Regiment)
    • Rejimen Askar Melayu DiRaja (Royal Malay Regiment) is the most senior regiment of the Malaysian Army. Its ranks are recruited from amongst the Malay population.
    • The Regiment has 25 battalions which are configured as Standard Infantry Battalions (20 battalions), Mechanised Infantry Battalions (2 battalions), Parachute Infantry Battalions (2 battalions) or as Support Battalions (1 battalion). The 1st Battalion, the most senior in the Regiment, currently undertakes ceremonial and Royal Guard duties.
    • A unit of the Regiment, 19th Bn Royal Malay Regiment (Mech) was involved in the rescue of US Rangers and Delta Force operatives in Somalia during the Battle of Mogadishu. The unit of 32 Radpanzer Condor APCs and 113 men from MALBATT 1 went in with the United States 10th Mountain Division to rescue the trapped rangers. Four APCs were immobilised and were destroyed by US helicopter gunships. 19 Royal Malay Regiment suffered 1 soldier killed in action (KIA), PFC Mat Aznan Awang while 8 others were wounded in action (WIA). Pfc Mat Aznan Awang was later promoted posthumously to Corporal and was awarded with Pingat Seri Pahlawan Gagah Perkasa, the nation's highest gallantry award. In total, 7 officers and 26 NCOs were awarded with various medals for their valour during the operation, the highest number of men recommended for medals in a single unit in a single operation.
    • RAMD Beret's color is 'Rifle Green' except two of army elite battalion wearing Maroon Beret. See 17 RAMD Para Weblog
Kapten Norul Hisyam of the 8th Royal Ranger Regiment, Malaysian Army, teaches patrol, ambush, and jungle attack to U.S. Marines and sailors.
  • Rejimen Renjer DiRaja (Royal Ranger Regiment)
    • Rejimen Renjer DiRaja (Royal Ranger Regiment) is a multi-racial unit organised along similar lines to the Rejimen Askar Melayu DiRaja. There are currently 9 Renjer battalions.
    • The Regiment traces its roots to the Sarawak Rangers and the Sarawak Constabulary, famed jungle trackers who had a deadly reputation during the Malayan Emergency and during the Communist Party of Malaya’s insurgency in Malaysia.
    • The 8th Bn Royal Ranger Regiment (8 Renjer) was the first infantry battalion in the Malaysian Army to undergo conversion into an airborne battalion. The unit is currently assigned to the elite 10 Brigade (Para).
    • The Malaysian Army's most decorated hero, WOI (Rtd) Kanang anak Langkau was a Regimental Sergeant Major of 8 Renjer .
  • Rejimen Sempadan (Border Regiment)
    • Rejimen Sempadan (Border Regiment) is a newly created regiment from the 300 series Territorial Army units in-charge of the border.
    • As of 1 July 2006, the Deputy Prime Minister Defense Minister, Dato Seri Najib Tun Razak had announced the formation of a new regiment specifically for border patrol. Members of the regiment will be taken from the various regiments and corps, most notably from the Rejimen Askar Wataniah. The minister also added that the Rejimen Askar Wataniah 300 series. 500 series Regiments will be restructured in the near future to accommodate the formation of the Rejimen Pengurusan Sempadan. It is believed that the army will form about 2 to 3 brigades of this new regiment.[1][2] The new regiment was officially materialised and launched on 9 February 2008 by Najib Tun Razak at the 1st Battalion RS, Tanah Merah, Kelantan.[3]
  • Kor Armor DiRaja (Royal Armoured Corps)
    • Kor Armor DiRaja (Royal Armour Corps) provides the armour capability for the Malaysian Army.
    • Currently, the Corps consists of 5 Battalions (sometimes errantly referred to as Regiments), which are equipped with various armoured personnel carriers(SIBMAS AFSV-90,Rheinmetall Condor, K-200 MIFV) and light combat vehicles.
    • The delivery of 48 PT-91M Main Battle Tanks from Poland has started in summer 2007 .

Combat support element

  • Kor Polis Tentera DiRaja (Royal Military Police Corps)
    • Kor Polis Tentera DiRaja (Royal Military Police Corps) deploy as part of the field army in support of army operations and enforces proper conduct among army personnel. Aside from being responsible for base security, the military police are also tasked with preventing and investigating criminal activities on army property or by military personnel.
  • Kor Jurutera Elektrik dan Jentera DiRaja (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Corps)
    • Kor Jurutera Elektrik dan Jentera DiRaja (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Corps) are responsible for the maintenance of all vehicles and machinery of the Malaysian Army.

Support elements

  • Kor Perkhidmatan DiRaja (Royal Logistics Corps)
    • Kor Perkhidmatan DiRaja (Royal Logistics Corps) is in charge of ferrying troops and supplies to the various units of the Malaysian Army.
  • Kor Kesihatan DiRaja (Royal Medical Corps)
    • Kor Kesihatan DiRaja (Royal Medical Corps) provides training for Army medics and other specialists. It runs the Armed Forces hospitals and provides the battlefield mobile hospitals. The unit has also provided relief MALMEDTIMs (Malaysian Medical Teams) to Pakistan, Afghanistan [2], West Sahara, Indonesia and Palestine.
  • Kor Perkhidmatan Am (General Services Corps)
    • Kor Perkhidmatan Am (General Services Corps) is a branch of Malaysian Army that handles administration and financial management of the entire army.

Special Forces

  • Rejimen Gerak Khas
    • Rejimen Gerak Khas (Special Forces Regiment) is the special forces and commando regiment of the Malaysian Army. 21 Gerup Gerak Khas is the operational home of various specialists and the Commando battalions which are capable of conducting unconventional warfare or special operations.
    • One of the known foreign operations involving this regiment was an attack by Somali militia on a convoy transporting UN Intelligence Chief in UNOSOM II on 18 July 1994. In the action, 2 members of the regiment were killed in action while another 4 were wounded. One of the injured men was taken hostage by the militia and was released 9 hours later.
  • Pasukan Udara Tentera Darat

The unit currently has one squadron, No. 881 Squadron, equipped with 11 Agusta A109 LOH and 10 SA 316 Alouette III light helicopters. The main Army Air Corps base is located in Kluang, Johor.

Reserves

  • Rejimen Askar Wataniah (Territorial Army)
    • Rejimen Askar Wataniah (Territorial Army) forms the second line of Malaysia's defence. Formed by college students, professionals and civilians, they provide support for the regular armed forces of Malaysia and are responsible for the security of key installations in times of conflict. Originally tasked with area and local defence, the Rejimen Askar Wataniah units have been reconfigured and will perform front line duties alongside regular units when the need arises. Rejimen Askar Wataniah units such as armored squadrons are integral units of several Kor Armor DiRaja regiments.

Strength and equipment

Present strength of the Malaysian Army is approximately as follows:

Malaysian Army Active: 110,000 personnel

Active Reserve: 41,600 personnel

Paramilitary: 18,000 personnel

RELA People's volunteer corps: 596,799 personnel

5 infantry divisions, formed from 12 infantry brigades, 1 parachute brigade and 1 mechanised brigade. The 3rd Division ("Sehitam, Semerah") is converting to become the army's first combined arms formation.

  • 26 Light Infantry Battalions
  • 3 Airborne Infantry Battalions
  • 3 Mechanized Infantry Battalions
  • 5 Armoured Regiments (1 Tank Regiment)
  • 16 Artillery Regiments (4 Low Level Air Defence)
  • 3 Special Forces Regiments

Approximately 60 Infantry (Askar Wataniah) Battalions.

Standard Issue Infantry Weapons

Standard Issue Infantry Weapons Origin Versions Quantity Notes/Users
Handgun Types
Beretta 92  Italy 92F Unknown -
Browning High-Power  Belgium Standard Unknown -
Colt M1911 .45 ACP United States USA M1911A1 Unknown Used by PAC and GGK
Heckler & Koch P9S  Germany Standard Unknown -
Sig Sauer P226  Switzerland Standard Unknown -
Vektor SP1  South Africa Standard Unknown -
Shotgun Types
Remington 870 Shotgun United States USA Standard Unknown Used by PAC and GGK
Franchi SPAS-12 Shotgun  Italy Standard Unknown Used by GGK
Submachinegun Types
Heckler & Koch MP5  Germany A2/A3/K-A4/SD3 Unknown Military police and special forces only
Rifle Types
Colt M4A1 Carbine1 United States USA Standard Unknown Under license by SME Ordnance. Standard issued assault rifle.
VB Berapi LP06  Malaysia Assault Rifle Under production
Colt M16A1 Assault Rifle United States USA Standard Unknown Currently used by the reserve force (Rejimen Askar Wataniah)
Colt M16A1 Model 653 United States USA Carbine Unknown Used by the reserve force
FN FNC  Belgium Standard Unknown -
SIG SG 553  Switzerland SG 553 SOW Unknown Used by GGK
SIG SG 552  Switzerland Commando Unknown Used by Kor Risik DiRaja
Steyr AUG1  Austria A1 Unknown Under license by SME Ordnance. Used under Reserve Force.
Sniper rifle Types
Accuracy International PM United Kingdom UK Standard Unknown -
Heckler & Koch MSG 90  Germany MSG90A1 Unknown Used by GGK
Machinegun Types
M60 machine gun United States USA M60A2 Unknown -
FN MAG  Belgium - Unknown -
Heckler & Koch HK11  Germany Standard Unknown to be replaced by FN Minimi
FN Minimi LMG  Belgium Minimi Mk.2 Unknown -
M249 light machine gun  Belgium Standard Unknown -
Grenade launcher Types
M203 grenade launcher United States USA Standard Unknown -
SACO Mk.19 United States USA Standard Unknown -
Milkor Mk.1  South Africa Standard Unknown -
Mine Types
MON-200  Russia Directional,anti-personnel mine Unknown -
TM-83  Russia Anti-tank mine Unknown -
PROM-1  Yugoslavia Anti-personnel mine Unknown -

Like most armed forces in the world, the Malaysian Army is in possession of numerous other weapons, mostly to be used by special forces units such as the Grup Gerak Khas or by soldiers with a special assignment such as snipers.[citation needed]

Tanks

A Malaysian Army PT-91M during the KL International Tattoo Show 2007
Vehicles Origin Type In service Notes
PT-91M Pendekar.[4]  Poland Main Battle Tank 48 125 mm gun
FV101 Scorpion  United Kingdom Light Tank 26 Armed with Cockrill 90mm main gun (some stored)

Armoured Vehicle

Paratroopers, 9th Royal Malay Regiment (RMR) (Malaysia), drive a Mercedes Benz G-class GD290 assault vehicle
Vehicle Origin Type In service Notes
ACV 300 Adnan  Turkey Infantry Fighting Vehicle 267 includes ambulance, ARV , command post vehicle and 81mm & 120mm mortar carrier versions
K-200 KIFV  South Korea Infantry Fighting Vehicle 111
Condor APC  Germany Armored Personnel Carrier 459
Sibmas  Belgium Armoured Fire Support Vehicles 162
Bandvagn 206  Sweden Light Armoured Vehicles 80
Alvis Stormer  United Kingdom Light Armoured Vehicles 25
Panhard M3 VTT  France Armored Personnel Carrier 140 Armed with 2 x 7.62mm MAG

Transport

Vehicle Origin Type In service Notes
3 Ton 4x4 GS Cargo HICOM Handalan  Malaysia trucks
2 Ton 4x4 Pinzgauer  Austria Gun Tractors
2 Ton 6x6 Pinzgauer  Austria Mortar Transporters with 144 ammunition trailers
3 Ton 4x4 URO VAMTAC (Vehículo de Alta Movilidad Táctico)  Spain High Mobility Tactical Vehicle
13 6 Ton 4x4 Light Recovery Isuzu FTS33H  Japan Light Recovery Vehicles
5 Ton 4x4 Isuzu FSS32G Communication Shelters.  Japan Communication Shelters
19 2 Ton 4x4 IVECO M4010  Italy Field Ambulances
2 Ton 4x4 IVECO M4012  Italy Satellite Communication Vehicles
33 Gomba Stonefield Field Ambulances
4x4 Land Rover Defender  United Kingdom
4x4 Mercedez Benz G-wagon  Germany Local Assembly
Mercedez Benz 911 3 ton  Germany retired
TATA 1613 3 ton truck  India
Bedford RL 3 ton  United Kingdom retired
Volvo C303  Sweden retired

Missile Weapons

Missile Weapons Origin Versions Quantity Notes
Air-Defense Types
MBDA Rapier missile  United Kingdom Jernas 15 launchers -
Starburst surface-to-air missile  United Kingdom Standard 15 VML / LML Launchers
Fei Nu-6  People's Republic of China Standard Not Known -
Anza (missile)  Pakistan Mk. II 160 -
9K38 Igla  Russia SA-18 382 Man-portable air-defence systems.[5][6]
Anti Tank Types
Baktar-Shikan  Pakistan Standard 450
MBDA ERYX  France Standard 274
Saab Bofors Dynamics AT4  Sweden Standard Not Known
C-90 CR (M3)  Spain RB LAW Not Known -
Carl Gustav recoilless rifle  Sweden M2 Not Known -
M40 recoilless rifle  United States Standard Not Known -
Artillery Types
Astros II MLRS  Brazil Keris 300 mm 36 excluding 10× AV-VBL Artillery Command Vehicles
Denel G5 howitzer  South Africa Howitzer Mk.3 22 -
VSEL FH-70  United Kingdom Standard 12 -
OTO Melara Mod 56  Italy Standard Not Known -
Oerlikon 35 mm twin cannon  Switzerland Standard 16 -
Bofors 40 mm gun  Sweden Standard Not Known -

Radars

Vehicle Origin Type In service Notes
Ericsson GIRAFFE Radar Air Defence  Sweden
Oerlikon Skyguard radar  Switzerland
VERA-E Passive Sensor

Army Air Wing

Aircraft Origin Versions In service[7] Notes
Aérospatiale Alouette III  France SA316B 9 Total 20 transferred from Royal Malaysian Air Force
Agusta A109  Italy A109H 11

Present Development

Since the recovery from the 1997 economic crisis, MA along with other branches of the MAF regains momentum in its modernizing programs. The first major procurement was to set a milestone by building its first ever main battle tank regiment. MA received delivery of 48 PT-91M main battle tanks and other tank based equipment like ARV WZT-4 from Poland, fully completed contract of sale in march 2010. Despite adding some 28 units of South African G5 Mk III 155 mm howitzers, another major procurement was 18 units of Astros MRLS from Brazil which delivery was completed in 2006. A second batch of 18 units MLRS was ordered in 2007.[8] MA is also rapidly mechanizing its current inventory where 211 Adnan IFVs (Infantry Fighting Vehicle) has been acquired by the army in 2004. Following a more recent procurement of the Pakistani Bakhtar-Shikan Anti-armor missile launcher, these were installed on the Adnans.

MA is now shifting its emphasis on enhancing its air wing. In September, 2006, MA had received its 11th and last Agusta-Westland A109H Light Utility Helicopter. These helicopters are to initially complement and ultimately replace the aging SA316B Aérospatiale Alouette III helicopters. 6 of them were to be installed with light arms and to be tasked to a scout observation unit; a sample was shown in LIMA 07. The configuration of the remainder is unclear. Furthermore, the army will also receive S61A-4 Nuri multipurpose helicopters after they are retired from RMAF to form the backbone for the army’s very first air transport unit. These helicopters will form the army air wing’s squadron 881 and squadron 882 respectively.

The same year at the biannual Defence Services Asia (DSA) 2006, Malaysia announced the U.S. made M4 Carbine service rifle will replace the Austrian made Steyr AUG service rifle for all three Malaysian Armed Forces services. The army will eventually receive the new weapon soon.

There is also a requirement for an upgrade to the current air defence network. However a dispute between the army and the air force on whether to introduce a mid-range SAM system had led the procurement to be on hold. According to a recent interview of the army’s chief of staff, Ismail bin Haji Jamaluddin, the army has no intention to take over the mid range air defence role.

Service With United Nations in Lebanon

The Malaysian Army might possibly deploy between 850 and 1,000 soldiers to Lebanon under the United Nations peacekeeping mandate. The deployment will be in concert with deployment of troops from Indonesia (850 troops) and Brunei (200 troops).[9] The International Stabilization Force in Southern Lebanon will only but only once a cease-fire is declared.[10] The Malaysian contingent will comprise troops from the 4th Mechanised Brigade. An observer group would earlier to gather information on the situation there.[11] The troops will fly out to Lebanon by military transport with their light equipments. Heavy equipment will be sent by ships of the Royal Malaysian Navy[12]

While Lebanon has wholeheartedly welcome Malaysia's presence, Israel has protested Malaysia’s participation in the peacekeeping force because Malaysia does not have diplomatic ties with Israel.[13][14] Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi (then fifth Prime Minister of Malaysia) said that only the United Nations can decide who should participate in the peacekeeping mission, and not by Israel.[15] Then-Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak have said Israel should have no say in the make-up of the force as the troops would not be stationed on Israeli territory. The Malaysian Foreign Minister, Syed Hamid Albar, echoed the view.

Media

Unlike many other nations, there seems to be little interest from the local film industry to film movies touching on patriotism and the military in Malaysia. The dearth of these films and the growing concern over the lack of patriotism among younger generations of Malaysians pushed the Army to film a movie titled Leftenan Adnan in 2000. The movie was launched on 31 August 2001 by the then Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia. The movie had renewed interest among younger generations of Malaysians to take up a career in the military. Another reason for the increased interest was also that the financial crisis in 1997 had caused unemployment to rise significantly while the number of graduates kept on increasing from year to year. The next project was a 29-episode drama series called Insurgensi, starring Norman Hakim. The series was shown on RTM1 for about 13 episodes before it was suddenly discontinued. No reason has been given as to why the series was discontinued but it is believed that the army continues to push for its re-airing on prime time. The army continues to show the series to National Service recruits.

References

Notes

External links


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