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Bahamas Military
 
 
 

General

The Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) is the navy of the Bahamas. Since The Bahamas does not have an army or an air force, its navy composes the entirety of its armed forces. Under The Defence Act, the Royal Bahamas Defence Force has been mandated to defend the Bahamas, protect its territorial integrity, patrol its waters, provide assistance and relied in times of disaster, maintain order in conjunction with the law enforcement agencies of the Bahamas, and carry out any such duties as determined by the National Security Council. The Defence Force is also a member of Caricom's Regional Security Task Force. The task force has seen action in the United Nations mandate in Haiti 1994.

The RBDF is strictly a naval force, and therefore differs from the rest of its Caribbean counterparts. With about 1,000 members, it is the largest of the Commonwealth Caribbean navies. Several changes in equipment can be seen. In the beginning, the British uniform was used. Now US woodland camouflage is used as opposed to the US Army's universal camouflage worn by The Royal Bahamas Police Force Drug Enforcement Unit.

Unlike other British Commonwealth Land Forces, there are no regular infantry brigades. Instead, there are special forces. These are the Special Operations Unit (which is the sea going section associated with all ships and small craft), and the Commando Squadron, which acts as an Amphibious Infantry unit and also performs security measures. This is a sizeable force of at least 500 Special Marine Commandos. Training is conducted with the US Navy Seals in special naval warfare and also with the British Royal Marines. A common training practice is to have a marine recruit conduct a two mile swim with a forty pound ruck sack.

Overview

Military branches :
Royal Bahamian Defence Force: Land Force, Navy, Air Wing (2009)

Military service age and obligation :
18 years of age (est.); no conscription (2008)

Manpower available for military service :
males age 16-49: 80,200 (2008 est.)

Manpower fit for military service :
males age 16-49: 50,764
females age 16-49: 51,690 (2009 est.)

Manpower reaching militarily significant age annually :
male: 2,992
female: 3,003 (2009 est.)

Military expenditures :
0.5% of GDP (2006)

 

 
 

 



 


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