Exercise OXIDE 2017: Draw to a conclusion with a Training Phase and Live Exercise Phase

Article by Lt R.B. Hlabati. Photos by PO S. O’Connor

Exercise OXIDE came to a conclusion on Wednesday, 06 December 2017. The Exercise consisted of two phases: a Training Phase and Live Exercise Phase.

During the Training Phase members of the South African and French Military Forces conducted cross training to test interoperability in order to establish their combat readiness. This preparatory phase allowed the task force to tackle any outstanding curative action in order to ensure a smooth Live Exercise Phase.

The Super Lynx helicopter doing aerial surveillance during the Live Exercise phase

Phase 2 was scenario based in which the SAS AMATOLA ambushed the “BOUGANVAILE”, the fictitious name given to FS CHAMPLAIN. This ship was being used by the SEGA cartel to traffick drugs via the Indian Ocean. Members from the Maritime Reaction Squadron (MRS) boarded the ship where Cartel members were arrested and confiscated illegal drugs. The FAZSOI 2nd Parachute Regiment later attacked the cartel’s main HQ which was situated ashore.

Overall the Live Exercise phase was successful and concluded with a demonstration which was given to VIP members who included the French Ambassador and the SANDF and FAZSOI Exercise Directors.

SANDF and FAZSOI Air Component Commanders strategizing about flight plans and emphasizing the importance of teamwork

MRS members boarding the “Bougainville”

Good relations between South Africa and France were strengthened by EXERCISE OXIDE 17 and the level of teamwork between these two countries was highlighted.

The experience gained from the exercise was invaluable for SANDF and FAZSOI members. Each Force was placed in a position where they could benchmark off the other in order to ensure success in the mission area. With such a great working relationship the next Ex OXIDE to be held in 2020 is definitely one to look forward to.

Brig Gen Lategan (SANDF Exercise Director) being interviewed during VIP demonstration

All SANDF components are currently enroute to South Africa and a welcoming function will be held in Simon’s Town on 15 December 2017.