Thursday, February 21, 2008

Black not White

I cannot for the life of me understand why the Singapore Air Force's Aerobatics Team is called the Black Knights. None of its jet planes, from the days of the A4 Skykawks to the F5 Tiger and today's F16 Eagles, have been painted in Black. The A4 Skyhawks probably had the darkest colours - dirty (combat) green. Given the colour of the current F16's, the Black Knights should have called themselves the White Knights, which has a more positive connotation, don't you think?

But maybe its a macho thing to label yourself black than white. I can understand that white is associated with purity and therefore has an effeminate ring around it. Imagine super hot rods of the skies appearing like puffy angels - no, that won't scare the enemies away. So black is the preferred colour, I suppose.

But again Black is associated with evil, so I wonder why the fixation with Black. If it really really likes the Black word, then at least it should paint a substantial portion of its F16 black, right? Like the US Navy's Blue Angels - their F18 Hornets are an unambiguous Blue. The Royal Navy's Red Arrow's planes are red in colour. Japan Air Self-Defense Force's Blue Impulse' planes are partly blue, the Irish Air Corp's Silver Arrows...need I list more?

We still have the red colour to 'play' with. The Red Baron, the Red Hawks, the Red Knights, the Scarlett Knights...hmmm its beginning to sound effeminate again, like Red Rose, though not the Red Arrows, but that name is already taken. I can see the difficulty with the colours, but instead of the boring name, the Black Knights, they should give themselves a name which has a more intuitive ring to it and which goes with the colour motif of their planes. Painting those planes any colour other than red and white will be unpatriotic too, I suppose.

Well, the Knights have proven to be rather good in the skies. Its just that questions keep popping in my mind as to why they have to call themselves Black. I just hope they never call themselves the Black Cats or more explicitly, the Black Lions (Lion City, get it?). Or what about Red Lions, or White Lions, but then lions are not exactly very agile animals, at least not as agile as their cousins, the Cheetahs. Black Cheetahs? Hold on, hold on, we are getting beyond ourselves.

p.s. A Google search for the "Black Knights" lead to the Republic of Singapore Air Force page which redirects to the Air Force's site's Museum pages. That does not inspire confidence in the longevity of the Black Knights. Maybe there is a deliberate message here - can the Black Knights until they come up with a better name. But of course, they do have a rather respectable website of their own.

3 comments :

Marc said...

Its the army. Nothing ever makes sense in the army, so one shouldn't be surprise.

Anonymous said...

white is only reserved for white horse. LOL. I agree with Marc Nothing makes sense in the SAF.

Anonymous said...

Juz for your knowledge that the team is called Black Knights is not because of its colors but the color of the Knight that is used in Chess. sooo pls dun mention about the name and colors of the f16 doesn't match. Anyway, red and white represent national colors of Singapore. It will never change, never.