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9 South African Infantry Battalion (9 SAI Bn)

9 South African Infantry Battalion (9 SAI Bn) is the single motorized infantry battalion designated as "sea landed", while 6 SAI Bn is "air landed" and 21 SAI Bn is "unconventional". The 9 SA Infantry Battalion is better known as the Cape Corps. The legendary Cape Corps, which was raised by the Dutch East India Company in 1781, has a long and distinguished military heritage. In more than two centuries, the battalion has seen action in the battles of Muizenberg and Blaauwberg, in France, East Africa, Palestine, North Africa and Italy.

According to published South African naval doctrine, "Maritime forces can shape, influence and control thisenvironment, as well as deliver combat force ashore if necessary. The delivery of force fromthe sea is defined as Maritime Power Projection and can take the form of the landing ofamphibious or special forces or the delivery of sea borne land forces, or bombardment byguided or unguided weapons from vessels at sea...." [SANGP100 - Chap 3 - General Maritime Strategic Concepts]

The Army will need to give some very serious and out of the box thinking to the employment of the future Contingency Brigade and how it will employ its units. There are those in the airborne forces world who believe that they can handle sea-landed operations on the basis of their existing experience. That is delusion: Sea landed operations present challenges and complexities that are very different to any other form of operation, and those need to be thought about, and thought through before SANDF begin to organise the units, buy the equipment and write doctrine.

The 9 South African Infantry Battalion (9 SAI Bn) was the South African battalion deployed in Burundi in early 2006. All the companiesof 9 SAI Bn deployed in differentprovinces of Burundi have started projects such as upgrading hospitals, repainting school buildings, repairingthe roofs, donating sports equipmentto schools, sharing food with thelocal population and participating indifferent sports with the local population, the national police and the Burundi Defence Force.

SADC has joined the AU in its endeavor to ensure that peace, stability and development take priority by forming a SADC Standby Force within its Defence and Security Organ. The SADC Standby Force was formally launched on 17 August 2007, in Zambia. To ensure that the force can be launched into operation as and when required by the mandating authority, the SADC Planning element came up with a road map for the operationalisation of the SADC Standby Force; hence the idea of multinational exercise was borne. It was the first time since SADC inception that forces from SADC countries participate in an exercise. Exercise Golfinho was executed in four sectors, sector 1 3 will be carried out at Lohatlha, Northern Cape and sector 4 at Walvis Bay. All landward forces will be in Lohatlha and seaward forces (amphibious force on land and ships will be in the territorial waters of Namibia), in Walvis Bay.

The Future SA Army Strategy, published in January 2009 and informally referred to as "Strategy 2020," outlines a future SA Army force structure composed of a mechanised division (optimised for conventional warfare, manned primarily by reservists, and kept at a sub-optimum level of readiness); a motorised division (primarily composed of active component infantry brigades and prepared for routine expeditionary deployments on peace and stability missions); and a Special Operations Brigade (designed to undertake quick-reaction and early-entry operations). The special operations brigade will consist of two parachute battalion groups, two air-landed battalion groups, and two sea-landed battalion groups. These battalion group pairs will each be manned by active component and reserve component troops. With the Local Government Elections that took place on 18 May 2011 the SANDF was prepared for any eventuality. The SANDF played an integral part in ensuring security during the elections. The Joint Structures initiated an operation over the period 11 to 20 May 2011 in the Western Cape area of responsibility. In the Western Cape, Col. Bayanda Mkula, Officer Commanding of Joint Tactical Headquarters Western Cape, was the mission commander, with a strong team supporting him. The structure included a Provincial Joint Operational Centre in Cape Town, a Venue Operational Centre and the deployment of a company of 9 SA Infantry Battalion.

The Marines were re-established as a branch of the SA Navy in 1979 to protect South Africa's harbors against attacks from land or sea. They were also deployed in South West Africa (Namibia), where they manned the twin-hulled harbour patrol boats and Vredenburg boats patrolling the Zambezi from Katima Mulilo. The Marines served in an infantry role on the Border until 1988 and were employed in counter-insurgency operations in South African townships in support of the South African Army. In September/October 1988 the Navy's largest and most successful peacetime exercise, Exercise Magersfontein, was held at Walvis Bay. The Navy demonstrated its ability to conduct operations far from its normal bases and revealed its amphibious capability by landing marines in Delta boats from SAS Tafelberg.

The SA Navy also established the Maritime Reaction Squadron in 2006 which consists of an Operational Diving Division, Operational Boat Division and the Reaction Division. This organisation provides the SA Navy with a basic amphibious capability.

The ability to mount and sustain the core of long range Joint and Combined Peace Enforcement and Peace Support Operations below the Tropic of Cancer would require transport helicopters and sustainable amphibious basing. The SA Navy is working up an SBS capability for riverine operations, but an enhanced version of the SA Navys LPD/LPH design will be vital to this capability.





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