Often, Singapore boys start talking Army and threaten to alienate the womenfolk, and often to their own detriment. Boring, the women groan. Speak English please, they groan again, when another story with a chuck load of jargon is given its mandatory airing at any Army buddy gathering.
Funny they should say that. 'Speak English', that is.
Drill (marching) commands are given in Malay (Did you know that the national language of Singapore is Malay?), and apart from the Malay-speaking populace, only an NSF and less frequently, an NSman would know what 'untuk diperiksa datang senjata'* means.
There are several other non-English terms which I remember wondering the origins of, given the dubious pronounciation by our Singlish-speaking soldiers.
Reveille: Morning wake up call / bugle. Pronounced in the SAF as Levelly or Rebelly. (origin: French)
Laager: The Armour version of 'safe-harbour', a defensive formation. (origin: Afrikaans)
Fabrique Nationale de Armes de Guerre Herstal, Belgique, Mitrailleuse d'Appui General (FN MAG GPMG): General Purpose Machine Gun. (origin: French)
Anyone has any recollection of any other (official) terms or names we use in the SAF which are foreign?
* port arms for inspection