Iain Hall's SANDPIT

Home » Posts tagged 'Australian Defence Force'

Tag Archives: Australian Defence Force

A war that is unavoidable and sadly necessary

 Tony Abbott: the operation could take ‘many months’. Photograph: Julian Smith/AAP

Tony Abbott: the operation could take ‘many months’. Photograph: Julian Smith/AAP

Australia will send a military force to the United Arab Emirates to contribute to the US campaign of airstrikes against Islamic State (Isis) militants in Iraq.

In response to a formal request from the US for specific Australian defence force (ADF) capabilities, the prime minister, Tony Abbott, said Australia would supply 600 personnel – made up of 400 from the air force and 200 from the military, including special forces – along with equipment to the coalition force against the Isis movement.

Up to eight Royal Australian Air Force F/A18F Super Hornets combat aircraft, a Wedgetail surveillance aircraft, and a tanker and transport aircraft will be sent to the United Arab Emirates.

“In addition, the Australian Defence Force will prepare a special operations task Group as military advisers that could assist Iraqi and other security forces that are taking the fight to the [Isis] terrorists,” said Abbott. Military advice would also be provided to Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq.

ADF personnel will be based in the US headquarters “to ensure close coordination” with the US and to support planning and logistics.

“We are not deploying combat troops but contributing to international efforts to prevent the humanitarian crisis from deepening,” said Abbott.

source

For once its possible to praise Bill Shorten for something because the on this occasion the opposition is sticking with the long standing tradition of solidarity with the government when our troops are deployed into harms way.  In fact with the exception of the far left Greens who have been predictably tacitly defending the IS Islamofachist killers in the northern part of Iraq there is an almost universal feeling in this country that going to war to stop the atrocities committed in the name of Allah. With the brutal murder of a British aid  worker fresh in our minds who could possibly think that there is any other choice but to go into northern Iraq and Syria with all guns blazing?

I rather firmly of the opinion that a predominately air based campaign will be more successful on this occasion than it was in the previous forays into Iraq. I think this for a couple of reasons. Firstly the current crop of Jihadis have very little willing support from the people in the territory they nominally control. This has to be a natural consequence of their brutality and continuing war crimes. Without some support from the population for their aims and methodology then all they have is fear from the people who currently live under their rule. While that is a good motivator for population compliance its not going to help them much in terms of defending the territory that currently occupy.  Secondly the local geography of dry desert mostly flat territory provides little cover and that means that vehicles  and men on the move are hard to hide form air surveillance and more importantly air strikes. If its moving and holds armed men then it can be taken out form the air.

I think that we can be pretty sure that the Kurds in the north will not tend towards the excesses of war that will alienate the Sunis who we want on our side n this war but I am far less confident of the Shia militias who may well be inclined to take some sort of revenge on the Suni population if they are perceived to be at all sympathetic to the IS Jihadis, this issue was front and center in the weekend news reporting out of Iraq on the ABC.

One thing that I don’t expect though is that there will be many IS Jihadists taken prisoner. Fanatics can not be trusted to be honorable  nor is it to be expected  that they will surrender when their situation is hopeless. Rule 303 is also likely to be applied by the ground forces that mop up as well. If many of them are taken prisoner its likely that bleeding hearts like the loopy Greens will want to see them tried by one court or another.  While that may suit the namby-pamby Greens I just don’t think that you want to give too many of these scumbags the venue to further promote their hateful ideology.

Its of course  too early to predict the result of this war but I don’t share the pessimism of  dyed in the wool extreme  lefties who are already wishing for failure here. Frankly failure is not an option because we have to excise the cancer from he middle east if any of us are to sleep well in our beds into the future the death cult has to be, well, killed as quickly and completely as we can do it. Fortunately there seems to be a quite broad range of nations who are willing to join into this sadly necessary task.

Cheers Comrades

If it moves and it has armed Jihadists in it blow it up even if they have hostages as Human shields which, sadly,  is likely to be the case

If it moves and it has armed Jihadists in it blow it up even if they have hostages as Human shields which, sadly, is likely to be the case

Once were warriors

Like everyone else on the political planet I am appalled when I hear of young people being abused but what I find amusing about the story about the ADF is the contrast between the way that News LTD and Fairfax have written about the just released report. first the report as published in the Courier Mail:

click for source

and this is how Fairfax report the same story:

click for source

Please take just a few minutes to read both articles I’ll still be here when you get back and then we can consider the difference together.

You’re back?

Great!

Now lets get down to tin tacks please consider the two pieces and ask yourself which one seems to have the most politicised agenda here. For me the answer is that Fairfax’s authors are pushing an argument that is antagonistic to the military in general and full of misandry with its provocative  headline. Frankly it seems to me that it is trying to suggest that all soldiers are rapists, Hmm where have I heard that sort of nonsense before? Ah yes its the sort of stuff you get from feminists who insist that there is a “rape culture”  and that every man is a rapist.  either by acts or thoughts.Worse still they primary allegation that inspires the headline goes back to 1951 which means that the alleged perpetrators would have long ago retried from the service.
By way of contrast the news piece concentrates upon a student guide to the unofficial slang and jargon of the academy. Frankly its not really a surprise to me that such a derisive lexicon exists and has currency in the ADF, every military since ancient times has had its own language and way of seeing both itself and the world. the question that this raises to me is just how seriously we should take such a thing and does it matter anyway?

On one hand I am as concerned as the next man about the way that women are treated  within the ADF but on the other hand I can’t help thinking that we expect our military to do some pretty brutal tasks (like kill the nations enemies in our name) so that requires a certain level of  mental toughness  that getting all PC and protective of new recruits is not going to engender. The aphorism about heat and kitchens comes to mind here. Is there a way of protecting the ladies who take the Queens shilling without making our military a bunch of wooses who are so frightened of causing offence that they are useless in their primary role of fighting for the country? That is the issue as far as I’m concerned. While I am all for and full of respect for any woman who is at heart a warrior and wants to do her bit to defend the wide brown land I am far less keen on the idea of women at the pointy end being protected and pampered to pander to feminist notions that gender is a construct and that traditionally male preserves like the military should be changed to make them more female friendly. If a woman wants in to the military boys club then it has to be on the same harsh and brutal terms as her male counterparts  or she just does not qualify to be a warrior for our nation.

Cheers Comrades

Social Media, Online Privacy and Free Speech Anonymity: a guest post by Fiona Causer

Freedom of speech is one of the most treasured rights of citizens of democratic nations around the world. Yet debate about freedom of speech continues in the twenty-first century as technology provides new methods of communication.  For with these new communication channels come new challenges to professionals in the position of protecting these free speech rights.  This makes the demand for savvier legal practitioners even greater than before.  In order to have a chance to defend future victims of violated online trust, many paralegal online education programs are tasked with providing technologically-aware graduates ready to face these potential violations to online privacy and free speech.

More than ten million Australians use Facebook and millions of others use other social media sites such as Twitter and YouTube to share information with friends and families and, sometimes, to express political opinions. While no one suggests that the explosion of social media use should be curtailed, many people are concerned over the forum social networking sites provide for anonymous comments, which can often contain vitriol that the posters would not necessarily express if they were face-to-face with someone with an opposing view.

Many Facebook users assume their posts are viewable only by their friends, but anything that has been posted online can be found and viewed by computer-savvy hackers, sometimes with dramatic consequences. Numerous people have been fired after making derogatory comments on Facebook or Twitter about their employers.

The consequences of some social media posts are far greater than an individual’s firing when the comments are of a political nature. For example, a private site on Facebook used by more than 1000 current and former members of the Australian military was discovered to have numerous posts that were offensive to women, Muslims and immigrants. Hundreds of the posts included expletives and hateful language. The discovery of the site, which has now been shut down, created a scandal in the Australian army and will likely result in the firing of the posters.
In another instance, Tony Mitchell, an Australian teaching English in Bahrain, was fired from his position and deported for writing about the political unrest in the country on his Facebook account. According to an article on NextWeb.com, Mitchell found out that his Facebook page was being monitored by people he had added as friends to his page who then forwarded the information to his university’s human resources department.

Situations such as Mitchell’s may encourage some social media users to create fake identities to protect themselves yet be open about their opinions. However, the ability to hide an identity on social media could lead to abuses if users use their anonymity to write inflammatory posts. If anonymous or false identities become too prevalent, it may be possible that restrictions could be put in place on social media networks to prevent this type of behaviour.

In order to take full advantage of the benefits of social media without compromising a person’s employment or safety, users of social media are advised to be careful about what they post. Embarrassing photos, rude comments about other people, explosive political rants and complaints about work can all cause personal problems such as loss of employment or the loss of important relationships. A good rule of thumb to avoid problems with social media is to assume that every item posted may be read by an employer and a close relative. Anything that would offend either of those people may be better left off a social media site. While freedom of speech is a right that every Australian treasures, with freedom comes responsibility.

%d bloggers like this: