Piet Nortje's military career began in 1978, when he joined the former SADF Permanent Force. His involvement with 32 Battalion started in the same year, where he rose rapidly through the ranks. In 1984 he was appointed Regimental Sergeant Major of 32 Battalion, the youngest RSM ever in the SADF. Although his involvement with 32 Battalion came to an end in 1988, he continued to serve in the SANDF until his resignation in 2005. He is now a captain in the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces.
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