Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 7 2010 Contents SNAPSHOT
The family of Private Scott Palmer, the
Commando killed in a helicopter crash in
Afghanistan on June 21, has expressed
their thanks to the ADF for its support.
In a letter to CDF, Air Chief Marshal Angus
Houston, Mr Ray Palmer thanked the ADF for the
treatment, respect and dignity afforded to his
family during their time of grief.
“Scott’s passing has been a period of great
sadness and sorrow, but the efforts of your staff
to ease our pain have been a great comfort and
support,” Mr Palmer wrote.
CDF ACM Angus Houston said he was very pleased
to receive the letter from Mr Palmer expressing the
gratitude of his family.
“I particularly acknowledge the efforts of 7RAR, 2
Commando Regiment and the Defence Community
Organisation, all of whom combined to provide
most of the support to the Palmer family,” ACM
“When we lose someone on operations, I am
grateful that these grieving families receive such a
high level of personal and compassionate support
from so many areas within Defence.”
Mr Palmer wrote his family was appreciative of
the tireless work by ADF personnel to ensure that
Scott’s repatriation, funeral and final resting was
done in a dignified manner befitting an Australian
“We couldn’t have asked for more.”
ACM Houston said all personnel involved in
supporting, not only the Palmers but all those
families who have recently lost loved ones on
operations, should take great pride in their efforts.
- By Sergeant Andrew Hetherington
the art of
At a patrol base in the Baluchi region
of Uruzgan Province in Afghanistan,
Australian soldiers from 1st Mentoring
Task Force (MTF-1), Mentoring Team –
Charlie, have delivered a 16-day course
to teach Afghan National Army (ANA)
soldiers the art of marksmanship.
The course was part of the ongoing efforts by
MTF-1 to assist the ANA’s 4th Brigade to attain
the soldiering skills required for them to take over
responsibility for security in Uruzgan Province.
Executive officer of Mentoring Team – Charlie,
Captain Dean Schmidt, said the Australian
marksmen conducted training with the ANA on
marksmanship techniques with newly acquired
“The ANA have a number of these rifles throughout
their units and MTF-1 has taken the opportunity to
help the ANA master the techniques required to
employ this weapon system,” he explained.
“The marksmen have been instructing them every
day, helping them to learn how to operate the
weapon and engage targets of varying sizes over
“The ANA will be able to employ this capability
when they send out patrols so they’ll have the
ability to provide over-watch for the patrols and,
hopefully, engage targets at extended ranges.”
Long-term, the development of the ANA through
this type of training will better equip the Afghan
Government so it can one day manage its country’s
security without the need for international combat
1 October marks
new vetting era
The launch of the Australian Government
Security Vetting Agency (AGSVA) on
1 October marks the dawn of a new
era in personnel security vetting, not
only for Defence but for the whole-of-
For the first time, a single agency – the AGSVA
will be responsible for granting and reviewing
security clearances for most Commonwealth public
servants and contractors.
According to newly-appointed Assistant Secretary
Vetting, Mr Peter Sinfield, the new approach will
result in an enhanced, streamlined, cost-efficient
Commonwealth vetting system and will deliver
direct benefits to Defence personnel.
“At the AGSVA we will be introducing a number
of IT innovations to speed up the process and to
get rid of much of the frustrating paperwork,” Mr
“For example, the AGSVA will provide Defence
personnel with access to security clearance forms
(E-Packs) on both the internet (AGSVA website) and
intranet (DRN), giving you 24/7 access from home
LefT: Lance Corporal Simon Ison helps an Afghan soldier
adjust his rifle sights during marksmanship practice in the
Baluchi Valley region.
RIgHT: A Royal Australian Air Force C-17 Globemaster
lands on the dusty airstrip of Multinational Base Tarin Kot.
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