Vicki keeps an eye on Sinai
NOTHING moves in the Sinai Peninsular without the knowledge of Coffs Harbour’s Vicki Ide.
Formally known as Sergeant Ide, she is working in the peace-monitoring operations centre at the headquarters of the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) on the Egypt Israel border.
The Sinai is one of the most war-torn pieces of land in history.
The first battle of Armageddon was fought not far to the north between the Egyptians and the Hittites, more than 3000 years ago.
Based in the MFO’s North Camp, Sgt Ide, who joined the army in 1997, is working with military personnel from 12 different nations including Canada, Fiji, Colombia, Hungary and Uruguay.
“Being able to use my years of training on an operation is very rewarding,” Sgt Ide said
“My daily role is to monitor and co-ordinate all vehicle movements from the Suez in the west to the Egypt-Israel border in the east.
“We give all drivers a movement’s brief at the start of the day and, as they move through the area, we record where they are and what the conditions are like – it’s a duty that we take very seriously.
“It’s even more important when the desert whips up sandstorms.
“Keeping in touch with the MFO personnel as they move between camps is vital.
“If a vehicle has a breakdown or gets into trouble, it means we are able to send out an emergency response team to help.”
As the operations centre Sgt Ide also receives reports from the outlying observation posts and in the event of a breach to the Treaty of Peace, can send an investigation team to verify the report.
On her return to Australia in April Sgt Ide is looking forward to catching up with her family and her daughter, Paige.
“Although we are surrounded by sand out here, I am looking forward to going to the beach when I get home – and driving on the right side of the road!”