Outwit, Outplay, Outlast
Nope, I didn’t join any reality tv show but I’ve just complete my 5 day Combat Survival Training Package. (Its interesting on how they come out with words like “Package” etc to make it sound nice, but I digress…) Like what I’ve posted previously, it involves a nav-ex, POW training and living-off-the-land. And for the skinning part last friday, I decided to kill an eel instead of a frog. Less tedious when gutting, but still as gross…
The whole thing started off on Monday when we went down to SMI for some basic tracking lessons, some interaction with the tracking dog and attack dog from SAFPU and a lesson on escape and evasion and resistance to interrogation. The tracking dog they sent was a Labrador, a young and playful dog and the attack dog was a Belgian Shepard.
We went down to Tekong after dinner and spent the night at the shophouses near Eastern Pier. Since it was a clear night, the sky was filled with stars. Didn’t know you could see so many stars in Singapore, although its not on the Singapore Mainland and Tekong is a restricted area.
The next day was the start of the navigation exercise, Escape and Evasion, a scenario play where our assault boat has capsized while in transit to a landing beach. We have to topo to a Partisan Point to link up with local resistance (the scenario play is that Tekong is an ally and has been invaded by the Redland Army and we are there to liberate them, “De oppresso liber“), find a checkpoint, a log point, before proceeding to the end point at Eastern Pier. It was quite easy for my team as we had a commander who was trained in SISPEC Tekong, so he knew the place like the back of his hands. Throughout the entire nav-ex, there were enemies ambushing us and there was suppose to be tracking dogs but they didn’t come until my team reach the endpoint…
The next scenario play is that while we were being trooplifted out of the battle area, we were ambushed and taken as Prisoner of War and thus began the most miserable 12 hours of my life. (Kiefer Sunderland had his 24, I have my Resistance to Interrogation…) We were first “herded” into a holding area to await processing. Next, we were being processed, where we were asked basic questions like rank, name, serial number and unit. We were then given a prisoner number, blindfolded and handcuffed. When they’ve finished processing us, we were gathered at an area for stress positions. This where they order us to stand, kneel and bend our back and at the same time stretch out our hands. This is suppose to maintain blood circulation or so they say, but I’m thinking its to keep us awake for the entire night. One by one we were called into the interrogation room where the interrogator will grill us for various information. Some were called once and some were called twice. I personally think that being interrogated is better then being outside doing those stress positions. Because we were all blindfolded, we didn’t know the time and whats happening around us. At first it was still ok, but as the night goes on, fatigue sets in and it really screw your head. You totally felt like shit during the last few hours… The POW ended with the rescue by SOF of our army. Some story, huh?
The training phase next transit to the so-called R&R, Rest and Relaxation. We were assigned to our own site where we were to build our own survival equipments, stuff like A-frame to sleep on, fireplace, trap etc. Base on how well you built the equipments, you’ll be given food rewards. For the two nights, we were given whole spring chicken and sweet potatoes, which were raw and for the first night, we had prawns for dinner. I have never tasted such sweet chicken soup in my whole life, must be due to the hunger and lack of food. We ate so much sweet potatoes that I’m kind of sick of it… And cookhouse fresh ration never tasted better.