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Army November 21, 2013
To secure and protect
Staff cadets move in to fight militia in north Queensland's 'Musorian Democratic Enclave'
Stability activities: Staff cadets from RMC-D land on the exercise area thanks to an MRH-
Photos by LS Helen Frank
LS Helen Frank
THE mission was to secure
the town, protect the
population and support the
host nation government
in restoring normality to
the Musorian Democratic
This was the task given to
the 128 first class staff cadets
from RMC-D deployed in
their final weeks of training
in the Hinchinbrook Shire
of north Queensland from
The training exercise
focused on stability opera-
tions, as the staff cadets
defended Shire Council
installations, established vehi-
cle checkpoints and searched
From their headquarters
at Ingham Airport, the staff
cadets patrolled the towns
throughout the area, including
Ingham, Halifax, Lucinda,
Taylors Beach and Forrest
Cadets arrived at the
exercise area in MRH-90
helicopters, Bushmasters and
SCdt Matthew Veron said
it was an exciting start to the
"Moving in by chopper
and being the first on the
ground gave us a really sig-
nificant role in the mission,"
"Having all these assets
here teaches us how to liaise
with the subject matter
experts and to use them
New Zealand Army Capt
Rob Pinkerton -- on exchange
at RMC-D and 2IC of first
class -- said he and the cadets
valued the chance to learn
more about how to interact
with the wider community as
officers in the Army.
"They have to interact with
the local population and local
media," Capt Pinkerton said.
"They are also fighting
an enemy that is undetect-
able within the community
so the exercise tests different
strengths of the cadets."
Troops from 2RAR, 3CSR
and 3CER played the part of
the opposing force and skir-
mishes took place daily with
blank ammunition being fired.
The exercise ends 18
months of intensive training
for cadets who have trained at
RMC-D and fours years for
those who studied at ADFA.
Capt Pinkerton said in
previous years the exercise
had been largely supported
by Brisbane-based 7 Bde and
held at Tin Can Bay.
This time with 3 Bde pro-
viding most of the support,
the opportunity to conduct the
exercise in Ingham afforded
some diversity to RMC-D's
"Ingham was a fantastic
training ground and the local
community was very welcom-
ing," he said.
"Ingham was a good loca-
tion because there are numer-
ous satellite towns that we can
use so it really does lend its
self very well to this type of
The cadets will graduate as
lieutenants in mid-December
and be posted to units around
When SCdt Vernon
graduates he will head off to
2/14LH Regt in Brisbane.
"I will most likely be a
troop commander there and
I'm really excited to join the
regiment," he said.
In thanks Sgt Frank Tatti and his son Ethan with 2CER Sprs Shane Kerswell
and Adam Tomlinson and their explosive detection dogs.
Photo by Tim Asher
War animals honoured
BIRDS and beasts that have served in war
have been recognised with a war memo-
rial dedicated to them in Brisbane.
Australian animals that have served
in war include dogs, horses, donkeys,
mules, camels and pigeons, according
to former Defence member and Police
Senior Constable Nigel Allsopp from
the Australian War Animal Memorial
"Of the 20000 war pigeons used by
Australian forces, two have been award-
ed the Dickin Medal, which the War
Memorial refers to as the animals' VC,"
During WWI, when radios weren't
common pigeons were carried by fighter
pilots and battleships for communication.
In WWII a ship carrying 650 soldiers
was torpedoed in the Coral Sea by the
Japanese. They didn't have a radio and
were sinking. They released their bird,
which flew 45km in a little under 50 min-
utes in typhoon conditions to deliver a
message enabling a rescue ship to save
those on board.
Commander 7 Bde Brig Greg Bilton
opened the memorial on October 31 -- the
anniversary of the Battle of Beersheba.
The memorial, at Eatons Hill State
School, is the first in an Australian
school, and the result of efforts of Ethan,
the son of 6RAR Sgt Frank Tatti.
Sgt Tatti said Ethan had always had an
interest in animals.
"Once I joined the Army he started
looking at our mascots, and after hearing
about an animal war memorial being built
in Toowoomba, he thought this would be
a great idea for his school," he said.
Eatons Hill has 1000 students and
more than 10 per cent of those are from
Spr Shane Kerswell, of 2CER's 24
Spt Sqn, attended the ceremony with his
explosive detection dog Poppy, a ridge-
Spr Kerswell said it was "good to see
the community recognises us, and what
we are doing".
"Ethan shows good initiative for a
young man, he would do well in our job."
Lt Don Robertson, of 2CER, paid trib-
ute to fallen Spr Darren Smith and his
EDD Herbie, both also from 2CER.
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