By: Elena L Aben, Tempo
Saturday, 04 September 2010
To help track down fleeing enemies during
combat operations, the Philippine Marines has
deployed 12 especially trained canines that will
see action in Mindanao, a Navy spokesman said
Lt. Col. Edgard Arevalo, Navy Public Affairs
Office (NPAO)director, said a capability
demonstrationof six of the 12 canines for
combat tracking operations willbe held on
Monday, Sept. 6, atthe Naval Station Jose
Franciscoin Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.
Rear Admiral Danilo Cortez, Navy Flag
Officer-in-Command(FOIC), together with
Brig. Gen.Rustico Guerrero, commandant,
Philippine Marine Corps, will witness the
event that precedes thesend-off ceremony
for the MarineDrum and Bugle Team that will
fly to Gangwan-do, South Koreafor the Wonju
Tattoo 2010 Music Festival.
According to Arevalo, the K-9 unit will
enhance the Marines'security operations,
especially inthe southern Philippines where
government troops have to deal with members
of the al-Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG)
and other enemies of the State.
"What happens usually is that every time there
is an encounter,we often read (in the news) the
enemy withdrew towards a direction and then
bloodstains were all over the place
indicating there were casualties on the
enemy side," Arevalo said.
He added, while the military now wants to
get rid of the body count syndrome , still the
recovery of firearms and physical count of
enemies whether dead or wounded, are the
tangible results that can be seen in
terms of operations as he noted that the
enemies usually drag with them their escape.
"So with the advent of the K-9 units that
we are forming, we will now be able to
counter this," Arevalo said, adding,
"Our K-9 units will help us track them down."
Aside from helping chase fleeing enemies,
Arevalo said the dogs can also be used to
augmentthe Marines' ordnance explosives
experts, having been trained to locate
bombs and booby traps.