Valour and Courage: Assault At Muara Tebas - 2Lt Baharin Abd Jalil - PGB & Rgr Lan ak Gima - PGB
Death or Glory
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The Courageous
Who Have Looked At
Death In The Eye
Stories Of Valour
No Atheists
In A Foxhole
“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God

Which must always come to pass

He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?

Have you always turned the other cheek?

To My Church have you been true?"

"No, Lord, I guess I ain't

Because those of us who carry guns

Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around

Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here,

Lord, It needn't be so grand,

I never expected or had too much,

But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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Assault At Muara Tebas - 2Lt Baharin Abd Jalil - PGB & Rgr Lan ak Gima - PGB
Friday, November 04, 2005
Information was received that a group of Communist Terrorists were moving around at the Tebas Estuary (Muara) area. Operations Hentam was lauunched in the affected area by the 3rd Brigade Commander, Brig Gen Mohamad Ghazali bi Dato Mohamad Seth (5942). Ops Hentam was launched immediately after Ops Jala Raja which was carried out in the !st Division of Sarawak. According to intelligence reports, the enemy was in a disarray, escaping the troops in Ops Jala Raja and were trying to make a comeback to re-establish firm bases again. The 1st Ranger Battalion, based at the Airport Camp, commanded by Lt Col Syed Abd Aziz bin Syed Abd Razak (5401) was involved in operations in the 3rd Division. The Battalion was very much stretched. For Ops Hentam the Battalion being very stretched could not provide the manpower demanded of it. The Battalion could only provide a platoon, which was commanded by 2Lt Baharin bin Abd Jalil (410560). The platoon was flown by a Malaysian Airlines aircraft from the Sibu airport to Kuching. The Platoon Commander was assisted by his platoon Sergeant, Sgt Ambau and three section commanders, Cpl Machan, Cpl Renang and Cpl Aggit.

After two days at the 3 Brigade Camp, they were deployed to be part of a cordon in the Muara Tebas area, close to Kampung Goebilt. The Brigade Tactical Headquarters was set up in the Muara Tebas area. They boarded an assault boat from Kuching to be inserted into the area. As required by the briefing from the G2 Ops, 2Lt Baharin ordered his men to conduct searches and survellance in his sector. An attack had earlier been conducted by the Security Forces on an enemy camp, whic was used as a training camp in the mountains of Muara Tebas. It was reported that after that attack that the enemy had scattered and were looking for an alternative location.

On the night of 16th March 1971, 2Lt Baharin was summoned to the 3rd Brigade Tactical Headquarters. He was briefed on the events happening in the area of operation. After the briefing he took off to return to his base. On his journey back to base, he instructed three of his soldiers to stay back and observe the School at Kampung Goeblit. After leaving them there he went back to base with two of his men. As dawn was breaking over the horizon, he was approached by one of his soldiers who was left at the school, 901680 Rgr Sandom ak Embin, he reported that two Communist Terrorists had made contact with the villagers in the wee hours of the morning at around 0630 hours, to obtain food supplies. He reported that one of the enemy was captured by them and one of the enemy escaped. Without wasting any time he gathered his remaining 15 men and rushed to Kampung Goeblit. When he arrived at the school he saw a tied up Communist, ethnic Chinese, closely guarded by two of his men.

2Lt Baharin interrogated the captured enemy, the enemy was not co-operative, he was adamant that he and his other comrade who escaped were the only ones in that area. Not getting any further information from the enemy, he decided to look for the tracks left by the enemy. He divided his group into 3 sub-groups. Each group contained 5 to 6 men. They were instructed to move in three different directions, in th event anyone of the groups found something, they were to make contact with him. After a little time the group commanded by him stumbled across some fresh tracks. Without wasting any further time, very carefully and with great caution followed the tracks left by the escaped terrorist. The tracks were clear, as they were in a swamp, where the enemy left his footprints which were filled with murky and disturbed water. After trailing this clear trail for some time the trail broke into two. One trail led to the left whereas another to led to the left. He gave instructions to further split his group, he ordered three of them to follow the trail going to the right, with the understanding that if the trail faded, they were to turn back and head to the trail going left, to join up with him. He went on the trail to the left, accompanying him was 901111 Rgr Lan ak Gima.

He and Rgr Lan followed the tracks very cautiously step by step, as they followed the trail it was getting clear that they were closing up on the enemy, the two of them alone. 2Lt Baharin in his excitement, tracking down the enemy, forgot that he had left his other three men too far away, the ones following the right trail. The more he followed the tracks they clearer they were getting. After sometime he spotted two of the enemy moving in front of him, around 40 meters ahead. The enemy did not realise that two determined men, were on the trail. The Enemy was moving quite confidently. He decided that he would continue trailng and observing the enemy. He wanted to observe their actions and the equipment they carried with them. They continuued following the enemy which seemed as if for forever, they were anxious and excited with sweat pouring out of their pores, with every step they took. He decided not to kill them as he wanted to find out the location of the main force. He decided that he and Rgr Lan would attack, only when the main force was spotted.

After sometime he asked Rgr Lan to lead, he became nervous the way Rgr Lan was doing it, therefore he continued leading. The reason being Rgr Lan being the good tracker was concentrating more on the tracks than the surroundings. He wanted to concentrate more on the enemy rather than the tracks as they had the enemy very close to them, very close. Before he took over the leading position, he ordered Rgr Lan to cock (lock and load) his HBSLR (Heavy barrel self loading rifle). It was a section support weapon with a cone at the muzzle, with a thirty round magazine.

Left : HBSLR, showing the Australian version, the Malaysian version had a cone shaped muzzle at the end of the barrel.

He also instructed Rgr Lan to keep his pouches open for quick reloading. he, himself, cocked his Sterling sub-machine gun. He opened up his pouches for easy reloading. He moved forward, instructing Lan to follow him on his right. Step by step they moved towards the enemy with adrenalin pumping, their faces flushed with excitement. Cautiously, at the maximum of alertness, their hearts beating they saw two of the enemy meet up with five others. Rgr Lan was abit anxious, seeing the coolness written of the face of his Platoon Commander, he took comfort. What Rgr Lan saw was a determined Officer. He felt his anxiety ebb away.

While they were following the enemy, they noticed that the enemy would turn around and look back after every four or five steps, therefore as they followed they had to take cover every four or five steps. They did this until they were around 25 meters away from the enemy. At that moment the 7 enemy they were following, met up with a larger force of the enemy. They were wearing black uniforms and carrying weapons. This was what 2Lt Baharin was looking forward to, the main force. He signalled Rgr Lan that he was going to mount the attack. Further he instructed Rgr Lan not to fire whilst he was firing. This was to give continous and sustained fire, allowing for reloading.

After giving these instructions he laid the butt of his sterling sub-machine gun on his stomach, with his barrel level to the ground. As the enemy turned around and exposed themselves. He let them have it. He swung the barrel of his machine gun from left to right. The contact occured at GR 506807 at around 1000 hours on the 17th March 1971. After emptying one magazine, he stepped into cover to reload, it was Rgr Lan's turn to open up with his HBSLR. He quickly changed his magazine whilst Rgr Lan was firing, who brought down some of the enemy. 2LT Baharin started yelling, "Charge !! charge !! Charge !!". Both of them assaulted the enemy position with the 2Lt Baharin assaulting on the left of the enemy position with Rgr Lan on the right. He ordered the attack as he was too close to the enemy, an this was an opportunity which was advantageous to him and Lan , to inflict the maximum number of casualties on the enemy.

The enemy was shocked and surprised when they saw the Rangers charging down on them. Some ran for their lives, others who were too slow died, killed by the formidable duo. After the shooting stopped they lay quietly to see if any of the enemy was still moving. There was no returning fire from the enemy. Seeing that no more of the enemy was left standing, he ordered Rgr Lan to cover him whilst he conducted the search. He cleared one dead enemy after another. As he was counting the enemy dead bodies, he saw an enemy in the prone position, thinking in his heart,"This one is dead". The enemy in the prone position suddenly, moved to the kneeling position and lifted up both his arms. Maybe he was asking for mercy, 2Lt Baharin, who was by now very excited and nervous, fearing for his life and that of Rgr Lan, kicked him, sending him sprawling, the enemy got up again and lifted his arms, he opened up with his sterling sub-machine gun emptying the magazine into the enemy. The enemy lay dead at his feet. The urge for revenge because of the Katibas Ambush was too strong.

After this he started worrying if there might be other enemy around him. So he and Rgr Lan withdrew behind to observe the situation in front. After sometime one of the groups that had earleir split up to track the enemy trail showed up. He and Rgr Lan replenished their ammunition from them. He ordered another search. They found a total of 13 enemy dead complete with their weapons, packs and equipment. They were 9 men and 4 women. One more pack was found not far from the location, it is believed that one of the enemy managed to escape. The body of that particular enemy was found a few days later by another force. The Enemy captured earlier was surrendered to the Police Special Branch for further investigations.

After sending out his contact report to the 3rd Brigade Headquarters he and his men carried the dead enemy and all the equipment to Kampung Goebilt. The enemy's bodies were airlifted out by Nuri (helicopter) to Kuching. The Brigade commander Muhamad Ghazali came by heli to see for himself the dead enemy, also to congratulate 2Lt Baharin and his men on the successful kills. He also received a congraulatory message from the 1st Division Commander, Major Gen Dato Ibrahim bin Ismail (1948) through the radio. After a few days he and his force were extricated from the operational area.

In the annals of Malaysian Military History, until this day no one person or unit can be compared to what 2Lt Baharin, Rgr Lan and his men from the 1st Rangers achieved. On the 2nd June 1971 the King conferred the Pingat Gagah Berani on 2Lt Baharin and Rgr Lan for outstanding valour in the face of the enemy in the highest traditions of the Ranger Corps.

2Lt Baharin was the third child in a family of five siblings. His father was Abdul Jalil bin Sulong, his mum was Mariam bte Abdullah. He was born on the 17th March 1950 in Rantau Panjang, Kelantan. He finished his Form 5 at the Sultan Ibrahim Secondary school, in Pasir Mas, Kelantan. He joined up as a cadet, Short Service Commission Intake -16. He started his training on the 3rd Septmber 1969. He was commissioned into the 1st Battalion Ranger Regiment on the 10th April 1970. He was placed as a Platoon Commander under Captain Walter Wong ak Tedong in A Company. He was around, when WO 2 Lenggu ak China and seven other were killed in the Sungei Katibas ambush. That particular incident so incensed him that he wanted to avenge that tragedy. Everyone in the Regiment felt the same. He also trained with the Indonesian Specail Forces (RPKAD), getting his Red Beret. He later joined the Malaysian Special Forces (Commandos), getting his Green Beret. He attended the Staff College at the United States Marine Corps Command and Staff College, Quanticao, Virginai USA, from 1983 until 1984. He became the Second In Command of 11 Regiment Special Forces on the 1st Sepetember 1988. Whilst he was acting CO of 11th Special Forces, his troops conducted an attack on an enemy camp in Bentong, Pahang at around 0655 hours on the 27th July 1987. They manage to kill one enemy and wounded several others. That was his last appointement, seeing that he was not advancing any further in his career he left the service after a long and glorious career.

Rgr Lan ak Gima was from Rumah Jagop, Nanga Mukih, Katibas, Song, Sarawak. He was an Iban, who was born in 1943, was the youngest in a family of 6 siblings. He never received any formal education. He used to help his father and mother in the Long House to get by life. He had a tough life growing uo, life was a struggle being poor. The Army was his first real career. He joined up on the 29th October 1963, he trained as a recruit in Sungei Patani. He was a determined person, he taught himself how to read and write. He joined 1st Rangers after his training when it was stationed at Sulva Lines Camp in Ipoh, Perak. He was an excellent soldier. He married Sambong ak Ngumbang in 1970, had three children. He left as Corporal after seving the nation for 21 years.
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 12:59 AM  
  • At 6:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This is one of the best and meticulously executed tracking and attack operation conducted on the enemy,apart from the follow up and contact with the enemy done by Lt Robert Rizal Abdullah with his men in Sarawak.
    Arrangement should be made so as recipients of SP and PGB medals of valour to give regularly lectures on their experiences of contacts with the enemy, to soldiers and officers at various units, especially to young subaltents.
    Research should also be done on successful contacts with the CTs but without SPs and PGBs being awarded to our personnels.I mean those with CTs killed but our men were only awarded with states' medals of valour.
    Another aspect that should be looked upon are the lessons learnt from the various jungle operations conducted against the CTs,although ATM now are more established as a modern conventional force.

  • At 6:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I would look up for Lt Baharin Bin Abd Jalil,(retired as a Mejar?) as I too came from his home town, Rantau Panjang Kelantan.
    Glad to have a local hero, in Mej (B) Baharin.
    Success in operations against the enemy can be partly attributed to the effectiveness of our small arms like the HBSLR, and GPMGs,(the very reliable Bren guns too), even the Sterling sub-machineguns are very effective for range under 100m, as the snub nose 9mm rounds would inflict bigger wound and damage on target/obstacle such as the human flesh and bones.
    Studies done on the effectivenes of the 5.56mm round (.223in Remington) during the Vietnam War, indicates that it commonly takes more than one hit of the 5.56mm calibre, as opposed to the effectiveness of the Russian's 7.62x39mm and the Nato's 7.62mm rounds to kill an enemy soldier.I wonder why we keep changing our soldiers' service assault rifles, in the history of the modern ATM , the various makes were introduced into service, FN SLR in 7.62mm calibre,during the 60s to mid 70s; Baretta AR70,HK33 and Colt M16A1 rifles,all at about the same time,during early 70s until 1994,and lastly Styer AUG in 1994.Kudos to ATM, for reverting back to M4 carbines (a derivative of the M16)for all personnels, as I am made to understand that Styer rifles were useless and very prone to stoppagges.It seems that 1 Styer AUG rifle could buy us two reliable and proven M16A1/A2,then.It was proven that HK33 rifles has cartridge extraction problems, and why the short history of the Baretta AR70s rifle in ATM service. First read about it,the AR70, usage in combat when reading about Lt Mohd Robert Rizal success contact with the enemy in early 1970s(I am very well aware of the fact that ATM has issued AR70 rifles much erlier than during my military service).


  • At 12:22 AM, Blogger hirleya said…

    Sadly to inform that my grandfather, Ranger Lan anak Gima had passed away on 26th November 2012. I am proud to read this.

  • At 9:46 AM, Blogger Major D Swami (Retired) said…

    Dear Shirley Sedah,
    Thank you for the update. Please feel free to forward his service photographs, I will upload it alongside his story. Thank you.

  • At 10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sadly my dad just passed away this year on 24th march. Yet so proud of him till now. <3

  • At 10:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    My dad is Mej Baharin Abdul Jalil.

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