Sunday, March 17, 2013

Army in Tarlac trains soldiers it classifies as ‘world class’

From the Business Mirror (Mar 17): Army in Tarlac trains soldiers it classifies as ‘world class’

CAMP O’Donnell, Capas, Tarlac—The Philippine Army (PA) based here has intensified its training of incoming soldiers and officers as it aimed to have “world-class” members under the Army Transportation Road map (ATR).
The PA described the ATR as “ambitious” and covers a period of 18 years. The Army also aims to serve the people and secure the country “hand in hand” with the Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) program.
The PA, which is set to celebrate its 116th anniversary on March 22, wants to win peace through the IPSP and ATR.
Gen. Emmanuel Bautista, chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), said “a world-class army begins with a world-class training.”
Bautista, a former PA commanding general, launched the ATR late last year. The top military officer wants the PA to be a source of “national pride” with world-class soldiers by 2028.
The PA camp in Capas is home to the Training and Doctrine Command (Tradoc), headed by Maj. Gen. Benito Antonio T. de Leon.
De Leon said the Tradoc and its training facilities is the main PA base to train aspiring soldiers. He said the Tradoc also supplies PA officers but the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) in Baguio City “is still the main source of Army officers.”
Improvements are under way at the Tradoc as 10 buildings are set to be completed before 2013 ends, said de Leon. He said the Tradoc has revised its school curriculum to fit into new paradigm spelled out in the IPSP and ATR.
De Leon invited the BusinessMirror and at least 20 local and national journalists in what he described as “media day.”
De Leon said the event “specifically recognizes the important role of the media as partner in protecting and defending the people by the use of the pen.”
The media practitioners were briefed on the various operations of the Tradoc where more than 1,000 people are in training as of March.
Tradoc sits on a 210-hectare hilly portion of Capas, sharing the camp with the PA’s light armor division occupying some 160 hectares. The AFP peace operating unit sits on a small area at Camp O’Donnell.
The journalists were toured in the vast Tradoc facility.
Col. Medardo Geslani, deputy commanding general of Tradoc, and Col. Ramon Bombais Jr., chief of staff, joined the media in the boodle fight at the training ground for soldiers.
There are at least 84,000 members of the PA. There are 10 infantry divisions in the country, four of which are in Luzon.

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