Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 6 2009 Contents US and New Zealand personnel refurbishing a
primary school on the Samoan island of Savai’i and
renovating the National Hospital in Apia.
Australian Army Engineer Lieutenant (LT) Mick
Collaros said the experience so far has been challenging.
“Working with the local Samoans on the
construction site was a humbling experience;
they worked 12 hours a day to help us. They were
generous and hospitable, really looked after us,” LT
Minister for Defence
Members from the ADF Force Support Unit 2
were recently farewelled during a parade at the
1st Royal Australian Regiment parade ground in
The Unit will provide logistics support to all
operational nodes in the Middle East, with its main
focus on supporting operations in Afghanistan.
The Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon.
John Faulkner farewelled the troops, providing some
insight to his recent visit to Afghanistan.
“I have recently returned from a visit to
Afghanistan and can personally vouch for the
important role you will play in providing support
throughout the Middle East,” Senator Faulkner said.
“I continue to be impressed with the spirit
and work ethic of the personnel of the Australian
Defence Force. ADF units based in Townsville make
a significant commitment to operations in Timor and
the Middle East, and our Defence personnel continue
to apply themselves to the task and rise to the
challenges that are presented to them.”
Inquiry Officer’s report
The Vice Chief of the Defence Force, Lieutenant
General David Hurley has released the Inquiry Officer’s
report into the death of Corporal Mathew Hopkins.
Corporal Hopkins was killed on operational
service in Afghanistan on 16 March this year as a
result of an intense fire-fight with Taliban insurgents
while conducting a joint patrol with the Afghan
National Army near Kakarak, 12km north of Tarin
Kowt in Oruzgan Province.
“This is an excellent result for the
investigation team and the cooperation of the
Vietnamese authorities has been exceptional and
highly valued by the team and the Government of
Australia,” Mr Combet said.
“Invaluable assistance has been given by a
number of former North Vietnamese and Viet Cong
soldiers and their commanders as well as many
local villagers. Their compassion and commitment to
assisting this vital mission is greatly appreciated.”
CDF returns from
Middle east and
The Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief
Marshal (ACM) Angus Houston, recently
returned from a visit to the Middle East
and Afghanistan where he met with ADF
personnel and conducted key meetings
with coalition partners.
During the visit, ACM Houston met with
Australian force elements, including members of
the deployed unit of Private Benjamin Ranaudo,
who was tragically killed on active service in
Afghanistan on 18 July.
“I was able to express my sympathies to
Private Ranaudo’s mates, who continue to mourn
his loss and are determined to continue their
mission in Ben’s memory,” ACM Houston said.
“Our people in the Middle East and
Afghanistan are doing excellent work and I ask all
Australians to keep them in their thoughts.
“Again during this visit, I saw first hand the
level of commitment and professionalism of our
ADF people in the Middle East and Afghanistan.
I was most impressed with the Operational and
Mentoring Liaison Team (OMLT) training and
visited one of the forward operating bases in the
An additional 120 Australian troops recently
arrived in Afghanistan to help provide security
to the Afghanistan Presidential and Provincial
“Our people are serving our nation with great
defence magazine ›
Chief of the Defence Force Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston is greeted by Lieutenant simon
Boxsell (far left) with the Commanding Officer MRTF2 Lieutenant Colonel Peter Connelly (2nd left),
Afghan National Army 2nd Kandak executive Officer Major Bashir Ahmid and the Middle east Area
of Operations Commander Major General Mark Kelly (far right), at Forward Operating Base Mirwais
on a visit to southern Afghanistan. Photo: Corporal Rachel Ingram
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