Chinese military officials have requested the Brazilian Army’s assistance in developing their own jungle warfare training capabilities, officials here said.
Briefing reporters in July, Col. Alcimar Marques de Araújo Martins, commander of the Centro de Instruçao de Guerra na Selva (CIGS – Jungle Warfare Training Center,) indicated that China had recently arranged to send a group of officers and NCOs to be trained at the CIGS, but they canceled their attendance in favor of an alternative approach.
“They have now asked us to provide a number of trainers and our jungle warfare training expertise to assist them in developing their own program in China,” he said. There was no indication as to the immediacy of such cooperation or the number of trainers likely to be sent.
While it is not clear why the Chinese are expanding their jungle training operations, the country does have long, jungle-covered borders with several neighbors.
The CIGS, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015, has trained almost 6,000 officers and NCOs over the years, of which nearly 500 have been from foreign countries. Although the great majority of these foreign students have come from Brazil’s Latin American neighbors, there have been some 27 US attendees and over 100 from Europe, notably from France. Only one attendee, so far, has come from Asia.
CIGS’ modus operandi is to “train the trainers,” in courses limited to 100-120 students up to three times per year. The 10-week course (eight weeks for the senior officer’s course) teaches a wide variety of jungle warfare techniques ranging from survival and foraging to navigation, fire and movement disciplines, riverine assault techniques, and jungle hygiene procedures.