The new Golak knife is a tribute to the soldiers deployed in the KFOR mission in Kosovo

 03. 05. 2024      category: Army of the Czech Republic
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The fourth knife called Golak from the series of the joint project of Mikov and the Military Solidarity Fund "War Veteran" was presented yesterday at the DAP in Prague 6. The project was inspired by significant events from the history of military missions abroad of the Czech Army, where each of them is dedicated to one knife and Mikov donates part of the price to the Military Solidarity Fund. For example, by purchasing a new Golak knife, the holder contributes CZK 300 to the fund. The presentation also included the presentation of a symbolic cheque for 150,000 crowns. Thanks to this amount, Mikov's donation has already grown to a total of CZK 405,000. The ceremony was attended by the Chief of the General Staff of the Czech Army, Lieutenant General Karel Rehka, MP and Chairman of the Subcommittee for War Veterans of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic Pavel Ruzicka and others.

Foto: Slavnostního představení se účastnil např. náčelník Generálního štábu AČR generálporučík Karel Řehka, poslanec a předseda podvýboru pro válečné veterány Poslanecké sněmovny Parlamentu České republiky Pavel Růžička. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: The ceremony was attended, for example, by the Chief of the General Staff of the Czech Armed Forces, Lieutenant General Karel Řehka, and Pavel Růžička, MP and Chairman of the Subcommittee on War Veterans of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

As already mentioned, the War Veteran project is a joint activity of Mikov and the Military Solidarity Fund of the Army of the Czech Republic. It was inaugurated on 25 July 2019 in the presence of the then Chief of General Staff Army General Aleš Opata and the then Chairman of the Military Solidarity Fund Brig. Gen. Lenka Šmerdová. Its aim is to link the memory of the heroism of the soldiers of the Czech Army with concrete assistance to those in need. The project is based on the thematic publication of special editions of knives inspired by significant events in the history of our army. From the sale of each knife included in the War Veteran project, a part of the prize is then donated to the account of the Military Solidarity Fund. The first knife in this unique series was the officer's version of the M-1917 knife, which was issued as a tribute to the war hero General Josef Biały. The second knife was the Storm, which commemorates the first foreign mission of the then Czechoslovak Army in Iraq. The third knife is the Repetitor, which commemorates the 1992-2001 UNPROFOR, IFOR, SFOR missions in the former Yugoslavia. The last knife in the planned series of eight knives is the Golak, which commemorates the participation of our soldiers in the Kosovo mission.

Foto: Přítomen byl samozřejmě také autor nového nože Golak major Roman Hippík, který si o jeho nožích připravil zajímavou prezentaci. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: Also present, of course, was the author of the new Golak knife, Major Roman Hippík, who prepared an interesting presentation about the War Veteran project. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

The cooperation between Mikov and the Military Solidarity Fund was praised by Pavel Růžička, chairman of the subcommittee for war veterans, who told our editorial board, "I am glad that this cooperation exists and I thank Mikov for supporting war veterans. Every crown to the fund is beneficial for war veterans. It is also a possible guide for other companies, especially those involved in arms production." His words were confirmed by Sgt. František Němec, who represented the Department for War Veterans of the Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic. According to him, Mikov is one of the few companies that contributes to the Military Solidarity Fund on a permanent basis. Among other things, the knives produced bring the veterans' community together. One example is the Repetitor knife, which brought together a community of soldiers who served on missions in the former Yugoslavia. "We are all like one big family, a community family of friends. I'm glad Mikov understood this, we all work together. I'm also very happy that they are working with Major Hippík, because he makes great knives," told CZ DEFENCE Němec.

Foto: Součástí prezentace bylo také předání symbolického šeku na 150 000 korun. Díky této částce vzrostl dar společnosti Mikov již na celkem 405 000 Kč. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: The presentation also included the presentation of a symbolic cheque for 150,000 crowns. Thanks to this amount, Mikov's donation has already grown to a total of CZK 405,000. | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

All the knives produced carry with them a powerful story. The Golak knife, for example, takes its name from the dominant peak of the A sector of the KFOR operation. We asked Major Hippík to tell us about the new knife. "It is a knife that is dedicated to the missions in Kosovo. First of all, it reflects the shape of the Bonus vz. 85 assault knife and another thing is its connection to the special forces that were first deployed to Kosovo in 1999," said Major Hippík. It is the link to specific missions that makes each knife unique. "It's not about some kind of commerce, it's about fulfilling the philosophy of the whole project. That is to help people in need," said Maj. Hippík.

Foto: Nový nůž Golak | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: New Golak knife | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

In the case of the production of the Golak knife, Major Hippík had the advantage of having personally experienced the mission in Kosovo. "I was present in the mission for a 3-week internship and then served as a reconnaissance platoon leader for almost 9 months. And during the patrols we were constantly using knives. I also came into contact with Serbian soldiers who also had knives and they were very similar to ours. So it kind of connected. The idea of a new knife is always that it should be somehow connected to what we experienced in that mission. Something is there from our army and something from a different area than the military one," Major Hippík told CZ DEFENCE. The proof is the previous knife of this unique series. "So far, everybody liked the Repetitor the most because it is a memory of the years of military basic service and of the basic service soldiers who volunteered for missions in Yugoslavia," added Maj. Hippík.

In total, Mikov plans to produce a line of eight knives. The fifth in the series will be in memory of soldiers who fought in all missions in Afghanistan. In this case, the environment in which the deployed soldiers operated also has an influence on the final design. "At that time, new weapons were being developed and introduced to the troops. These were missions that changed the image of the contemporary army. We were there as soldiers for a long time. In those 20 years, our army has gone through a huge change both in modernisation processes and training. For example, we have learned how to operate on the asymmetric battlefield, as opposed to the conventional way of fighting, which is de facto our daily bread. This was something different," revealed Maj. Hippík.

Foto: mjr. Hippík s novým nožem Golak | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: Major Hippík with the new Golak knife | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

Despite all the modernisation processes, the army knife is still the last weapon at the soldier's disposal. And most of these knives were designed by Major Hippík in cooperation with Mikov. These knives were also part of the exhibition, as part of the introduction of the new Golak knife. "Here are a lot of knives that I designed with Mikov for different units - whether it's the 4th Brigade or the 7th Brigade or the 102nd Reconnaissance Battalion.

Foto: Prezentace nožů navržených mjr. Hippíkem pro jednotlivé útvary (např. 4. brn, 7. mb či 102. pzpr) | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE
Picture: Presentation of knives designed by Maj. Hippík for individual units | Jan Zilvar / CZ DEFENCE

102nd Reconnaissance Battalion actually has the oldest knife. The Falco knife has been in production since 1997. It's the longest individually produced knife in a large production run in the military. Plus, it's part of the symbolism of the battalion. It's in the emblem, it's on the unit's banner, and it's become, you could say, kind of my personal knife. Although I like all knives, I have a very emotional relationship to this knife because it is the basis for the new Bren 2 bayonet," Major Roman Hippík told CZ DEFENCE.

 Author: Jan Zilvar

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