9 RARA (Vic Branch) Newsletter – September 2018

Enjoy the read of the September issue


RARA QLD – E News – August 2018

RARA QLD has launched its new E News  which replaces The Spirit Newsletter as the major communication means. It will be a released monthly. All contributing articles will be gratefully received

This August edition features the AGM and our new President Dave McDonald and the Management Committee.


4 RARA Newsletter – The Fighting Fourth April 2018

Fighting Fourth April Colour Master

VETAFFAIRS – From The Minister: Putting Veterans First


In his first Vetaffairs column since his appointment as Minister for Veterans’ Affairs in March, Darren Chester shares his plans for the portfolio, starting by thanking Vetaffairs readers for their service.

“This portfolio is one that can make a real difference to people’s lives. It’s my job, as Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, to make sure that we understand and act on your needs so that we can make that difference.

My approach will be pretty straightforward. I’m your representative to government. I will make sure your voice is heard. I want to know what your concerns are, and I’ll do my best to address them within the Parliamentary process.

“I want to know what’s going on, and what’s working. I want to know what’s not working, and where we can make changes…”


Republic of Korea War Service Medal Approved for Wear

Veterans of the Korean War have been approved to wear the Republic of Korea War Service medal by Governor-General General Sir Peter Cosgrove.

Minister for Defence Personnel Michael McCormack said the approval to wear this medal after initially refused by the British Government in 1951 shows the Australian Honours and Awards system has evolved to become its own unique system of recognising our service men and women.

“The Australian Council of Korea Veterans Associations has campaigned to have the decision reconsidered from an Australian perspective,” Mr McCormack said.

“The approval to wear the Republic of Korea War Service Medal demonstrates Australian Defence Force’s willingness to consider and accept change.

“During the Korean War, in which more than 15,000 Australians served, Australia used the Imperial Honours and Awards system and was therefore subject to the award policies set by the United Kingdom.”

Mr McCormack said the Republic of Korea War Service medal was introduced by South Korea in 1951 to recognise the assistance provided by members of the United Nations forces in combatting communist aggression in Korea.

“It has been policy to accept only one foreign award for a particular service or campaign,” Mr McCormack said.

“In this case the United Nations Medal KOREA had been accepted and therefore the offer of the Republic of Korea War Service Medal from the South Korean Government was refused.”

As a foreign award, the Republic of Korea War Service Medal is not administered by Defence and is no longer issued by the Republic of South Korea.

Eligible veterans may purchase a replica medal from any reputable medal dealer.

Veterans who have been awarded the Australian Active Service Medal 1945-75 with clasp KOREA (AASM KOREA) are eligible for the Republic of Korea War Service medal.

The eligibility criteria as directed by the Republic of Korea are as follows:

  • served between 25 June 1950 and 27 July 1953
  •  service prescribed must have been performed while:
    on permanent assignment
    on temporary duty within the territorial limits of Korea or on waters immediately adjacent for 30 consecutive or
  • 60 non-consecutive daysas crew members of aircraft in aerial flight over Korea participating in combat operations or in support of combat operations.

Further information on the medal, including fact sheet, is available on the Defence Honours and Awards website, here.

Rifle Company Butterworth – Warning Order “OPERATION EXPOSURE”






Following Governments’ failure to agree to RCB Review Group’s legitimate claim for recognition of their service 1970-1989 as warlike,  the  Group  intends to take further action to secure an independent judicial enquiry.

All RCB  persons who served at that time are encouraged to support the RCB Review Group

Core History Paper – A case for recognition during the SME V3


“We Wish You a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year”

“We Wish You a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year”

Christmas is both a sacred religious holiday and a worldwide cultural and commercial phenomenon. For two millennia, people around the world have been observing it with traditions and practices that are both religious and secular in nature.

Christians celebrate Christmas Day as the anniversary of the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, a spiritual leader whose teachings form the basis of their religion.

Popular customs include exchanging gifts, decorating Christmas trees, attending church, sharing meals with family and friends and, of course, waiting for Santa Claus to arrive.

This mix of the religious and popular customs was seen and heard in the TV Channel 9’s Vision Australia Carols by Candlelight in Melbourne last night with such songs as “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” , “Gloria In Ecelsis Deo” and,  “Jingle Bells“, and  “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”





30 October 2017

On the 2 November 75 years ago, Australian soldiers retook the village of Kokoda in Papua New Guinea.


Between July and November 1942, Australian forces fought the numerically stronger Japanese in abysmal conditions along the Kokoda Track, sustaining more than 600 dead and more than 1,600 wounded or struck down by illness or disease.

The Australians forced the Japanese into retreat, culminating in battles at the Beachheads which came at an enormous cost — more than 1,200 Australian lives lost and more than 2,000 wounded.

Today, I ask all Australians to pause and reflect on the service and sacrifice of these great Australians and of all those who served on the Kokoda Track and at the Beachheads during the Second World War.

We also remember the estimated 50,000 Papuan civilians who provided supplies to Australian soldiers and evacuated our sick and wounded.

Lest we forget.

How to sell your mil skills in civvie street

Signaller Aiden Barker prepares to lower the Australian National Flag at sunset on the Flight Deck of HMAS Adelaide while alongside Fort Hill Wharf, Darwin during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 17.

One of the biggest issues many veterans face when they leave the defence force is deciding what to do next with their lives.

Many from outside the defence force might consider it just ‘finding a new job’, but it’s more than that.

It’s about finding a new career, which can give you a sense of purpose like your past career in the defence force.

I know from experience that this is much easier said than done.

Depending on who you talk to, some will say your defence experience will be a massive plus, however others will think that it’s actually a hindrance.

Unfortunately, the same is the case with employers – some understand the unique and valuable skills a veteran can bring to the workplace, where others simply don’t get it.

So, the inevitable question comes next – how much should you talk about your military experience? Should you play it down? Or play it up?

Read the full article and the latest Contact newsletter here.

CONTACT Newsletter 49

The latest edition of CONTACT can be read here, it leads off with their article of 2RAR (Amphib)

2RAR will be called 2RAR (Amphib)

04/09/2017 Brian Hartigan

Following a recent CONTACT article that suggested 2RAR would ‘cease to exist as an infantry battalion’, new details have emerged.

In an article in ARMY newspaper today, the commanding officer of 2RAR referred repeatedly to his unit as 2RAR (Amphib) and suggested the unit would be reduced to a headquarters and three sub-units.

While the politically correct describe the new structure as ‘leaner and more agile’, others have told CONTACT it will be about half the size of a regular infantry battalion.

The restructure will see 2RAR focus on specialist amphibious skills, with what we think is an ‘ambitious’ aspiration to ‘still retain the ability to act as a conventional infantry battalion when required’ – while somehow, the reduced unit establishment would also ‘allow soldiers with amphibious experience to be shared across Army’.

Soldiers, assigned to 2nd Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment, depart the well deck of the amphibious transport dock USS Green Bay (LPD 20) in combat rubber raiding crafts as a part of a joint amphibious assault raid exercise during Talisman Saber 17. Talisman Saber is a biennial U.S.-Australia bilateral exercise held off the coast of Australia meant to achieve interoperability and strengthen the U.S.-Australia alliance. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Sarah Myers/Released)