EXERCISE SHARPENED STEEL between Australian Army and Malaysian Army

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The Australian Army’s 2nd Cavalry Regiment conducted a joint exercise with the Malaysian Army’s 19th Royal Malay Regiment (Mechanised) around the Malaysian Army Combat Training Centre (PULADA).

Dubbed EX SHARPENED STEEL, the Australian cavalrymen wielding Simunition-equipped F88 Austeyr rifles carried out exercises to gauge the capabilities of both forces in conducting operations in built-up areas (OBUA) while operating armoured vehicles.

The 2nd Cavalry is currently stationed in Malaysia as part of Rifle Company Butterworth’s 137th rotation.

The unit comprises three combat squadrons consisting of two squadrons with the eight-wheeled amphibious reconnaissance vehicle (ARV) Australian Light Armoured Vehicle (ASLAV) and another with the M1A1 Abrams main battle tank (MBT), however these combat vehicles were not part of the units’ rotation at RCB.

The 19th RMR (Mech) is the Malaysian Army’s mechanised infantry battalion which employs the Deftech AV8 Gempita 8×8, replacing the Regiment’s veteran Radpanzer Condor armoured personnel carriers (APC) which accompanied the battalion to Somalia in 1993 as part of the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM II), later seeing battle in Operation Gothic Serpent, otherwise referred to as the infamous ‘Black Hawk Down’ incident.

Prior to EX SHARPENED STEEL, the Rifle Company had participated in multilateral dismounted exercises, EX CRESCENT STAR with the Singapore Army and EX MALLEE BULL in Brunei. –shp/adj/dl/mgm (pix: Australia Army)