Defence

Veterans running for Congress in 2018

4479C5AF-6D10-4685-AB5A-CFE5261FB5B4.png

Army Times reports that 172 veterans are running for Congress in 2018. 104 of the 160 men are representing  the GOP. 9 of the 12 women are representing the Democrats. One male is running as an independent in CA

So 65% of the veteran men are representing the GOP. 75% of the veteran women are representing the Democrats.

Their military service spans from the 1950s to Afghanistan/Iraq and includes time spent in the active-duty ranks, reserves as well as the Coast Guard.

Shamebridge University

3555EFA9-98D0-4426-9D6E-E8461A24EFBE.jpeg

It’s amazing how social justice warriors constantly find new things to protest. The victim industry is in full swing. While a lack of access to WiFi or a flat cell phone battery is as big a hardship as these Cambridge University union students have or probably ever will face, they deem Rememberance Day as something that glorifies war, not about respecting the dead and. Those who served with distinction.

It is amazing they have the intelligence to be at university to begin with given the inability to critically think about why the day is absolutely about trying to avoid such tragedy again. Maybe Jeremy Corbyn is right – free education is justified because it is obviously worth nothing if the simplest things have to be made so complex.

Going through the letters of a veteran who served in WW2 Lt Peterson wrote of the honour of the Anzac Day ceremony in Beersheba. In 1940. It was to pay respect to those who bravely served their country not those who were mildly burnt while serving a coffee at Starbucks.

Only last week the University of Manchester’s student union voted to say “applause” is not inclusive and can distress people. Jonathan Pie’s video on the oppression obsession speaks directly to the grievance industry which ends up serving no one.

They’re a weird mob

8F9A2F29-1AE8-4C2F-A132-40475F2EBE72.jpeg

Lt. Norman Martin Peterson may have served 6 gruesome years in the Australian Field Ambulance during WW2, yet after the war he ended up being a character (Peto) in John O’Grady’s (pseudonym Nino Culotta)  “They’re a weird mob” which sold over 1,000,000 copies over multiple print runs since the 1957.

Norman’s best mate Lionel Addison (Addo) was also a character. O’Grady wrote,

So we went to the club, ‘just for a little while’, and Addo and Peto and Simmo and Old Vic were there. It was getting late, and Kay and I said we had to dgo, because our neighbour was ‘minding the monster’ and she would be wanting to go to bed. And Addo said that in any case they would all come to my place and I could make coffee…And Peto paid her a lot of attention with exaggerated gallantry, and gave her whiskey and beer.

O’Grady wrote that Addo & Peto were among the last people on earth anyone would want to control the freedom of suggesting if it was done they’d be the first to tell the wowsers where to jump. Seems pretty accurate, even  for a fiction novel.

NATO or Paris Climate Accord – actions speak louder than words

DE99183D-361A-4F23-AF3F-F8A7B28CCC38.jpeg

Six weeks ago NATO members were outed for being woefully behind their own self imposed promises on defence spending. Seems like self-imposed promises on Paris Climate Accord commitments are just as woefully followed through. Whether saving the planet or saving borders, actions speak louder than words.

Sniping a VC winner with ambush journalism

3278978D-B844-41C6-91AE-875FA97D5422.jpeg

How ridiculous could Fairfax Media be to attack and smear Benjamin Roberts-Smith VC – a decorated Victoria Cross winner – as a war criminal, a “callous, inhumane” murderer and a bully? Winning a VC is nigh on impossible without heroics which change the course of a battle with complete disregard of self preservation.

Since 1861, 3,502 Congressional Medals of Honor have been granted to US military personnel. The VC has seen 1,358 winners since 1856 to soldiers of Her Majesty. That isn’t to say a VC is twice as hard to get. It’s to say it takes someone doing pretty special deeds to win either.

Here is what Roberts-Smith won his VC for:

“For the most conspicuous gallantry in action in circumstances of extreme peril as a Patrol Second-in-Command with the Special Operations Task Group on Operation SLIPPER.

Corporal Benjamin Roberts-Smith enlisted in the Australian Regular Army in 1996. After completing the requisite courses, he was posted to the 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, where he saw active service in East Timor. In January 2003, he successfully completed the Australian Special Air Service Regiment selection course.

During his tenure with the Regiment, he deployed on Operation VALIANT, SLATE, SLIPPER, CATALYST and SLIPPER II. Corporal Benjamin Roberts-Smith was awarded the Medal for Gallantry for his actions in Afghanistan in 2006.

On the 11th June 2010, a troop of the Special Operations Task Group conducted a helicopter assault into Tizak, Kandahar province, in order to capture or kill a senior Taliban commander.

Immediately upon the helicopter insertion, the troop was engaged by machine gun and rocket propelled grenade fire from multiple, dominating positions. Two soldiers were wounded in action and the troop was pinned down by fire from three machine guns in an elevated fortified position to the south of the village. Under the cover of close air support, suppressive small arms and machine gun fire, Corporal Roberts-Smith and his patrol manoeuvred to within 70 metres of the enemy position in order to neutralise the enemy machine gun positions and regain the initiative.

Upon commencement of the assault, the patrol drew very heavy, intense, effective and sustained fire from the enemy position. Corporal Roberts-Smith and his patrol members fought towards the enemy position until, at a range of 40 metres, the weight of fire prevented further movement forward. At this point, he identified the opportunity to exploit some cover provided by a small structure.

As he approached the structure, Corporal Roberts-Smith identified an insurgent grenadier in the throes of engaging his patrol. Corporal Roberts-Smith instinctively engaged the insurgent at point-blank range resulting in the death of the insurgent. With the members of his patrol still pinned down by the three enemy machine gun positions, he exposed his own position in order to draw fire away from his patrol, which enabled them to bring fire to bear against the enemy. His actions enabled his Patrol Commander to throw a grenade and silence one of the machine guns. Seizing the advantage, and demonstrating extreme devotion to duty and the most conspicuous gallantry, Corporal Roberts-Smith, with a total disregard for his own safety, stormed the enemy position killing the two remaining machine gunners.

His act of valour enabled his patrol to break-in to the enemy position and to lift the weight of fire from the remainder of the troop who had been pinned down by the machine gun fire. On seizing the fortified gun position, Corporal Roberts-Smith then took the initiative again and continued to assault enemy positions in depth during which he and another patrol member engaged and killed further enemy. His acts of selfless valour directly enabled his troop to go on and clear the village of Tizak of Taliban. This decisive engagement subsequently caused the remainder of the Taliban in Shah Wali Kot district to retreat from the area.

Corporal Roberts-Smith’s most conspicuous gallantry in a circumstance of extreme peril was instrumental to the seizure of the initiative and the success of the troop against a numerically superior enemy force. His valour was an inspiration to the soldiers with whom he fought alongside and is in keeping with the finest traditions of the Australian Army and the Australian Defence Force.“

Having spent time with a veteran in recent weeks, it is clear the majority of us have never had to face live fire in war. We aren’t across the mental and physical stresses of being in battle and seeing mates killed or severely wounded. Soldiers and veterans quite rightly don’t take kindly to people they’ve put their lives on the line for  calling into question their dedication and service of country.  Even letters CM has read from WW2 veterans show the pressures they faced. Does the SMH know some 46% of people that serve in the military come out with some variant of PTSD? Why not show some dignity rather than sift through trash to besmirch a hero?

Fairfax Media taking potshots at the bravest of the brave looks daft. Is it any wonder Benjamin Roberts-Smith is fixing his legal bayonet to skewer those who tried to impugn his valor? He made a point of his fighting was to ensure freedom of the press but equally they have to be responsible for reporting accurately.

The Sydney Morning Herald just took a potato peeler to a gun fight. Having said that, the VC special forces veteran could probably force the paper into surrender with an unpainted pinky finger. Roberts-Smith would be the first to admit he killed in battle then again as General Patton once said, “you don’t win wars by dying for your country but making the other son-of-a-bitch die for his!

Cheers

1B2A88AC-FD92-49FA-9B54-05FBF76496B0

Honouring a hero  – Lt. Norman Martin Peterson was born this day in 1914. Larrakin, ladies man, comedian who enjoyed his long necks. Here is a poem he wrote during his time on Crete during his service in the Field Ambulance. He’d  probably be court-martialed in today’s Aussie Defence Force for his prose.

9AC86C45-0E9F-43D7-AAD2-41C7B7AFF0E7.jpeg

The US Army talks about the role diversity plays in the military

2768465E-C778-46C6-AA4F-6FCE573E77E8.jpeg

As Australian Navy personnel switch from rustproofing vessels to varnishing fingernails in pink, the US is upping its game on making sure fitness requirements are raised.

War doesn’t distinguish between gender and age. You can be 20 years old on the battlefield, or you can be 50, and you’re going to have to accomplish the same mission. This test helps you execute your warrior tasks and battle drills, no matter who you are,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Edward Mitchell, command sergeant major of the Center for Initial Military Training, during a test exhibition at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia.

The minimum Army standard is a 140-pound deadlift, a 4.6-meter power throw, 10 release push-ups, 3:35 minutes on the sprint-drag carry, one leg tuck and a two-mile run in no more than 21:07 minutes.

For the combat MOSs or units, it’ll be a 180-pound deadlift, a 8.5-meter power throw, 30 push-ups, 2:09 sprint-drag-carry, five leg tucks and 18 minutes for the run

Army Times reported that senior leaders have been trying out the ACFT for months. Sergeant Major of the Army Dan Dailey and Maj. Gen. Malcolm Frost, the head of CIMT, told reporters in July that they had both taken it ― and that they both needed to work on lower body strength for the deadlift.

The Army is also considering raising the standard higher again before implementation in 2019.

Contrast that with Australia where we are dropping standards for the sake of equality and diversity. Let that sink in.