20 Juni 2013

The SAF Newcomer Will Make its Public Debut at NDP 2013

20 Juni 2013

Close-up of the SAF's new Mk II Light Strike Vehicle. (photo : Cyberpioneer)

Modern force set to thrill in traditional Parade & Ceremony

Zooming at the speed of 110km per hour and capable of high cross-country manoeuvrability, the Mk II Light Strike Vehicle is highly mobile and versatile as it can be equipped with different weapon systems such as the Automatic Grenade Launcher and the Spike Anti-Tank Missile System.

The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) newcomer will make its public debut at this year's National Day Parade (NDP) Dynamic Defence Display (D3), along with two other new assets: the Singapore Police Force's (SPF's) Armoured Personnel Carrier and the Singapore Civil Defence Force's (SCDF's) Compressed Air Foam Fire Engine.

Themed Surprise and Awe, this year's display will involve the largest number of military and Home Team hardware, as well as 350 participants, the greatest number of personnel involved.

Last seen in 2011, the D3 looks set to thrill and excite the audience with dazzling multimedia effects and pyrotechnics. The NDP audience will also get to experience "live" point-of-view shots, which are only seen by the asset operators, to have a sense of how the operators feel when they go through tight turns at high speeds.

"There will be plenty of high-speed manoeuvres, in terms of operational manoeuvres that are conducted by the SPF, SCDF and the military, as well as combat manoeuvres such as those performed by the Apache helicopter," said D3 Chairman Colonel (COL) Dinesh Vasu Dash, on the high-adrenaline action that the audience can expect from the display.

He added: "You will see for the first time, the people behind the machines, which we think is extremely important for our audience to understand, that there are faces behind these daunting machines and these are the people protecting us all the time."

New assets making their first public appearance at this year's NDP D3 are: (from left) the SCDF's Compressed Air Foam Engine, the SPF's Armoured Personnel Carrier and the SAF's Mk II Light Strike Vehicle, seen here with the respective forces' personnel. (photo : Cyberpioneer)

The display will feature seven demonstrations to showcase the forces' capabilities, such as the SAF's long-range Artillery firepower, the SPF's Anti-Swarming Tactics and the SCDF's fire-fighting, rescue and emergency, and HazMat operations.

Another NDP first is the D3 ending with a performance by 200 young students from Yishun Primary School dressed up as soldiers, sailors, airmen, police officers and SCDF personnel, symbolising the future of Singapore's defence.

One of the participants, Jamie Lim, 10, said: "My older sisters always tell me it's a waste of time (to perform), but I'll just say, 'No, it's for our country, so don't act like you're not jealous!'"

Having rehearsed her performance in school for the past two weeks, Jamie said with a smile: "I'm very excited because it's going to be the first time I'll be on television!"

While the D3 aims to present a modern and advanced force with new elements, the traditional Parade & Ceremony (P&C), which has always been an iconic hallmark of NDP, will include classical favourites like the State Flag Flypast, Feu de Joie or Fire of Joy, 21 Guns Salute and City March.

P&C Chairman Senior Lieutenant Colonel (SLTC) Simon Lee explained that the traditional parade would serve as an anchor to the traditions that let Singaporeans reflect on their values, identity and shared history.

There will be 31 contingents in the parade, including four Guard-of-Honour contingents, the SAF Colours Party and the Combined Band, which comprises members from the SAF Band, SPF Band and students from the National Police Cadet Corps Band.

At the helm of this year's parade is Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Sng Meng Wah, who is Commanding Officer of the Naval Diving Unit's Dive School.

"As an SAF officer, this is the highest honour that can ever be given, so I feel very proud to have this opportunity to serve my country in this capacity," said the Parade Commander.

On how he familiarised himself with the parade commands, LTC Sng said: "We have Sergeant Majors who give very good pointers on areas where I can improve. On a personal level, I make use of my time alone in my car to practise shouting commands!" 

A crowd favourite in the P&C is the aerial flypast performed by four F-15SG and five F-16D Block 52+ fighter jets as they pay tribute to the nation and mark the Republic of Singapore Air Force's 45th anniversary this year.

Other highlights include a video of stories about Singaporeans and their reflections related to Total Defence, called "Our Stories", and a photo montage of Presidential Inspections from past NDPs.

(Sing Mindef)

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