PRETORIA – The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) hit back at the 2014 Defence Review, which warned of the critical decline of the armed forces due to “neglect, lack of proper ammunition and ageing aircraft”, by revealing the proposed course of action to upgrade Africa’s superpower nation’s military to match its superpower status.
According to Bantu Holomisa, the deputy chairman of the Defence Force Services Commission, every soldier will be issued with a specially manufactured military kettie to bolster their current armaments. “Ketties are quite versatile,” he said. “It can be used in close combat situations on all terrain, and if you run out of ammunition, you can always dig around for more.
Arms manufacturer Denel SOC Ltd is in the process of setting up a new factory in Watloo, northeast of Pretoria, to increase production of military ketties in order to meet the current requirements. “We’re quite satisfied with the progress being made,” remarked company CEO Riaz Saloojee. “The project will create hundreds of jobs for artisans from Mamelodi who are skilled in intricate process of kettie construction.”
The Denel Infantry Kettie (DIK) features a splinter-free wooden grip made from bluegum trees. The elastic slings are made from vulcanized natural rubber and are optimised to shoot nearly straight over medium distances. Denel’s patented ostrich leather pouch provides superior grip to fire off a wide range of projectiles, including ball bearings and small rocks.
“It’s all very green, really,” insisted Saloojee. “The rubber is recycled from old inner tubes, and the bluegums need to be cut down because it is a non-indigenous tree that soaks up too much ground water to the detriment of indigenous flora. We’ll be repelling foreign invaders using weapons made from a foreign invader.”
The DIK also comes with a revolutionary new Denel Rapidfire Ghoen Bag ™, which is a small sack filled with projectiles, mounted on the wrist of the grip hand for optimal access to ammunition to facilitate faster reload speeds.
Currently still under development is the Denel Mechanised Catapult, nicknamed the Cobra, after the snake’s ability to spit at the enemy. The Cobra is a mobile artillery vehicle with a short-ranged firing capability. Fusing ultra-modern all terrain roving technology with cutting edge Dark Ages high calibre projectile discharging know-how, the Cobra can fire an 80kg ball of lead relatively inaccurately at any stationary target, as long as it can sneak up close enough.
Future projects include the Bottle Rocket Anti-aircraft Vertical Launch Missile. This ambitious device launches small plastic objects into the sky to disrupt enemy air assaults. It works by popping a piece of Mentos candy into a 2L bottle of Diet Coke, immediately mounting it on a small, portable launch pad before the Mentos causes the Coke to fizz up and hurl the rocket into the sky, and watching it scare the crap out of low-flying aeroplanes, forcing them to retreat.
“Coca Cola is available anywhere, so resupplying the frontlines should be easy,” said Saloojee. “And if you’re cut off from any supply chains, you can always march into a local spaza shop and resupply yourself.”
Holomisa is confident that the updated equipment will ensure that the SANDF maintain a sustainable defence capability. “Nobody will dare to call us a ragtag army ever again,” he said. BN
Remington was born at gunpoint on the Cape Flats. He spent his whole life following guns around, shooting them with his camera. He believes the pen is mightier than the sword, but he’s still not sure where the fire arm fits into the equation. When not reporting on a war he… Oh, hang on. There’s always a war going on.