Amongst the wide array of Indonesian Special Forces, the army’s Raiders are a versatile, rapid-reaction force of elite light infantry. Within the Indonesian Army there are 10 Raider Battalions, each with a nominal strength of 747 troops. All Raiders are trained in counterinsurgency, raids, ambushes, reconnaissance, and other light infantry tasks. Fifty men from each Raider battalion are given additional training with Kopassus, the Indonesian Special Forces, in anti-terrorist ops and other specialized skills. The Raiders are identifiable by their green berets.
As with other elite units within the Indonesian Army, the Raiders have a distinctive blade. I have a couple of contacts within Indonesia, including the one who usually sends me military blades from that country. Both tell me it’s hard to track down who exactly manufactures the different blades for the different units. In some cases, the initial order may come from one manufacturer, but later orders may come from another manufacturer who has contacts within high-ranking officers in the Tentara National Indonesia (TNI—Indonesian National Armed Forces). Orders may be based on a combination of low bids to the Army and high bids to ranking officers! In any case, most of the blades now seem to be produced within Indonesia.
The Raider Knife—to use a technical term known to all blade collectors—is really rather neat. It has a fierce looking Bowie-type blade with a clip point. As with many Indonesian knives, there are aggressive looking teeth along the top of the blade. I honestly am not familiar enough with Indonesian martial arts to know if blade combat includes techniques for blade breaking, so I don’t know if these aggressive teeth theoretically have that function or not. The Raiders do have jungle missions, so I guess the teeth might serve some sawing function in gathering branches for camouflage. My experience with blades having teeth, however, has been that large, relatively wide-spaced ones like the kind on the Raider Knife do not do well for survival sawing tasks.