Sunday, July 31, 2011


Saturday 23rd July 2011, I attended a reunion of officers who had served 15th Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment in the era of the 70’s at Kem Rasah, Seremban, Negeri Sembilan. This is the second time a reunion of such nature was organized; the first being last year held at about the same period at Kelab Golf Perkhidmatan Awam, Kuala Lumpur.

The reason the organizers’ chose Kem Rasah for the reunion this year was because Kem Rasah was the home of the battalion when it was first established back in the late 60’s. The camp was formerly the Headquarters of the British Gurkha Brigade that withdrew out of this country to conform to the British government’s policy of withdrawing all their troops ‘East of Suez’.

This year’s reunion was accompanied by the spouses and it was wonderful to see the first three Commanding Officers (CO) in the crowd and they are, first, Lt Kol Osman Harun (retired in the rank of Lt Jen), second, Lt Kol Abdul Rahman Lassim (retired in the rank of Kol) and third, Lt Kol Ismail Salleh (retired in the rank of Kol).

Besides the first three CO’s, we also had officers that were the first unit staff officers i.e. the adjutant Capt Yusof Dahaman (retired in the rank of Lt Kol) and the Mechanical Transport Officer Lt Wan Mohammad Wan Ali(retired in the rank of Lt Kol). I was also pleased to meet four of my platoon commanders i.e. Lt Kol Ariffin Shah Muhamad (retired), Lt Kol Noor Mohamed Abdullah (retired), Lt Kol Abd Rahman Kamil (retired) and Mej Ahmad Dzahir Hj. Ali (retired). These were the platoon commanders that I had that made my army life interesting.

I am fortunate to have served the first two of the three CO’s and I remembered having to take command of a rifle company on 29th September 1971 when the battalion was on operations at Kroh, Perak. I was to remain with the battalion for almost 5 years before being posted out to a newly raised battalion i.e. 18th Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment that was being formed at Segenting Kem, Port Dickson where I served for 2 years. So in all, I held the post of Company Commander for a total of 7 years; a record I suppose.

Having got into Kem Rasah, I was dumbfounded to see the changes that have taken shape within the camp itself; not for the better but sadly for the worse. The entire camp area looks so run down, and it appears more of a refugee detention center than an army camp. Someone remarked that we should all be ashamed if a Thai Army Officer were to visit the camp, because the army camps in Thailand are far superior and well maintained. I do not know if ever any of the higher Commanders visits the camp, and I wonder what have they to say about the camp.

I think Kem Rasah should have long moved out because of the intense development surrounding the camp. It is definitely not a safe military complex any more, where even the perimeter fencing is no longer in existence. I am now beginning to wonder why Kem Rasah, the camp where I spent 5 years of my army life has been left to neglect. I just wonder why. Certainly, the soldiers in Kem Rasah deserve something better.



Pak Oncu said...

ini lah nasib pegawai dan anggota tentera,, bila perlu kan apabila mereka terdesak jer ,,,, contoh nya banyak dato, sendiri mau ingat lahh,,, agak agak nya berapa ramai jeneral yg seberani dato ni ?? tell us pembaco dato yg setia ni.. tapi TLDM base hebat dan bersih dato, itu dulu tetapi sekarang ni tak tahu lahh,,,,,

hussin said...

9 julai kepala merah bantai rakyat. 31 julai, mereka "pahlawan"! in malaysia semua boleh jadi. perbarisan tamat latihan bersama - mencipta sejarah memang kehebatan malaysia. penciptaan sejarah ini sedikit demi sedikit turut membunuh sejarah lama. lama2 malaysia no sejarah. yang ada hanya kat muzium. kat gombak ada muzium orang asli. bila pulak akan dicipta muzium melayu?

club1268 said...

Dear Pak Chad,
When such camp conditions are publicised in this manner, it will be attended to by MINDEF. Especially from 'mind NO EVIL'. Good of you. You should also visit the other camps as well. That may help them too.
I enjoy the article on the get together of 15 RAMD. Unfortunately the 7th CO, me, wasn't invited. I can only guess they could not get in touch with me or it was only restricted to the senior COs or only officers posted into 15 RAMD after commission.
I guess I have to stick to 2 RAMD (my first unit) on their gatherings, whenever their records are updated.
Salam To All 2 and 15 RAMD Officers and Men.

Mohd Arshad Raji said...

Dear Club1268,

I can guess who you are. No offence to you on behalf of the organisers. Will try to gather as many former CO's during the next reunion. Insyallah.

Anonymous said...

Salam Dato'...

Googled my dad's name and I came accross this blogpost. Showed it to Ayah and he grinned all d way reading it. Ayah said this is a good blogpost, thank for mentioning him and the others...and he shared that he had a good time meeting and catching up with old friends at the gathering.

Later Ayah asked if there's any pictures of all the handsome men who were at the gathering. I said, none ;)

Your Internet savvy-ness impress me Dato'. Keep the good ideas coming and happy blogging.

Azlin Ariffin Shah

Mohd Arshad Raji said...

Dear A.Lin,

You must be the newly wedded one. Yes, there are many stories that I can share about your dad.