If you feel the same way as me and don’t particularly enjoy the festivities of the Lunar New Year all that much, here is a short post to take up a couple of minutes of your time when you’re out bai-nian-ing and have nothing to do.

I think I will never run out of things to blog about. Why? My mind is simply full of random stuff swimming around looking for an outlet.

For the past week, I was back for my annual in-camp-training and the impact of technology, privatization and outsourcing of critical functions have been increasingly noticeable.

Medical Training

It has been known for many years that training has now been partially outsourced to companies who conduct CPR certification courses etc, and many of the trainers are ex-military personnel.

Shooting Range Complex

In the past, whenever “range” is mentioned everyone would assume that it is a time-wasting full-day event. Now, it is a different story as it is conducted in a high-tech indoor shooting-range facility.

It is the world’s first marksmanship training centre to have multiple firing ranges that provide training for different shooting missions and simulation for both day and night environments.

From start till end, it took about 4 hours which included registration, coffee & breakfast, briefings, waiting, toilet breaks, shooting and clearance. One flick of the switch and they can even simulate night-time conditions – no more waiting for the sun to set!

Did I mention air-conditioning?

SAR21 Rifle

Prior to this in-camp-training, I have never fired the SAR21 before in my life. Old folks like us have only used the M16 previously.

So, I was honestly pretty excited because this is my first (and probably last) time firing the SAR21. Incredibly, the weapon didn’t even need to have zero-ing to be done! We only had one training session with an electronic version of the SAR21. Yes, just one training session with a “toy gun” and we’re good to go!

Our 4-men shooting detail achieved marksman (>80%) on our first attempt at the combat shoot. The SAR21 is indeed a remarkable piece of equipment, although it is not necessarily a perfect rifle. Hand it over to any Singaporean son and he is pretty capable of hitting at least a stationary target.

Evolution

How things have changed. Only older folks like us have had the opportunity to experience the transition of the SAF. Innovate and adapt, or face the prospect of becoming obsolete.

The younger generations could be having a much more comfy and efficient national service nowadays? I don’t know that for sure. All I know is that .. Two more years to go, just two more years.

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