31 Oktober 2016
The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF)'s High Mobility Artillery Rocket System firing during the integrated live firing by the SAF and the US Army. (photos : Sing Mindef)
SMS Ong Visits Air-Land Integrated Live Firing Exercise in the US
Senior Minister of State for Defence Mr Ong Ye Kung witnessed an air-land integrated live firing exercise yesterday at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, USA. The Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) is conducting the exercise, code-named Daring Warrior (XDW), from 10 to 31 October 2016.
The exercise involved around 340 personnel from the SAF, and assets such as the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) and the Artillery Hunting Radar (ARTHUR) from the Singapore Army, as well as the Apache AH-64D attack helicopters from the Republic of Singapore Air Force's Peace Vanguard detachment. A highlight of XDW16 was the conduct of a bilateral air-land integrated live firing exercise with the US Army's HIMARS, which involved about 140 troops from the US Army's 75th Field Artillery Brigade and the National Guard.
After witnessing the live firing, Mr Ong noted that training in the US provided important opportunities for the SAF to hone its capabilities and strengthen its operational readiness. He said, "It (Fort Sill) is a very good facility and it allows us to have this kind of very effective and very realistic exercise to be conducted here… It is a very complex exercise but it shows that we have the capability to operate effectively in such a complex environment."
SAF Arthur locating radar (photo : Singapore Army)
Commanding General of the US Fires Center of Excellence and Fort Sill Major-General Brian J. McKiernan also highlighted the value of XDW. He said, "XDW is a great training exercise for both the SAF and the US Army to train together and create new bonds of friendship while establishing a common understanding of each other's operational capabilities. Fort Sill is proud to host this annual exercise and cultivate the great relationship we share with our Singapore counterparts."
As part of his visit, Mr Ong also observed an Apache AH-64D live firing mission with live tracking by the ARTHUR, and interacted with exercise participants.
First conducted in 2010, this year's XDW is the sixth in the series. Training in the US provides an excellent opportunity for professional exchanges between the two armed forces, and has also helped to foster strong people-to-people ties. Such exercises underscore the excellent and long-standing defence relationship between Singapore and the US.