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Latest News for our Navy Network

Read our February edition of our newsletter BROADSIDE
27 February

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  25 February
France dumps Aussies from ‘strategic partnership’ citing AUKUS sub deal
Angered by Australia’s rejection of its huge conventional sub deal, France has cast Australia out from its select group of strategic partners.  The announcement was included deep inside France’s official Indo-Pacific Strategy, a high-level effort signed out by the French Foreign Minister and featuring a forward by French President Emmanuel Macron.  Aside from the swipe at Australia, the document otherwise commits France to a course clearly parallel to that of the United States and other allies:  firmly committed to ensuring freedom of the seas, adherence to international law and protection of economic interests such as fisheries and oil and gas reserves.  More.....
25 February
Charting in Tonga a climax in sailor's story
Able Seaman Shannae Fiddyment started this year with a career opportunity of a lifetime, deploying in HMAS Adelaide on Operation Tonga Assist 2022.  Able Seaman Fiddyment is part of the deployable geospatial support team conducting graphical environmental assessments of the sea floor so safe passage can be charted for surface craft connecting ship to shore.  “The team specialises in rapid assessments so we can get troops ashore,” Able Seaman Fiddyment said.  “We’ve used our hydrography equipment to map the ocean floor leading up to the islands to chart the safest course.”  More.....
25 February
ADF support to aged care set to increase
Twenty-four ADF medical teams have assisted at aged-care facilities in the first weeks of ADF support to the aged-care sector, with the number expected to increase over the coming weeks.  Since the Prime Minister’s February 7 announcement committing ADF personnel to supplement COVID-related staff shortages, more than 50 residential aged-care facilities have requested Defence assistance.  Commander of the Defence COVID-19 Task Force, Rear Admiral Robert Plath, has been leading the planning and coordination team of 18 ADF staff, working with the Department of Health at their offices in Canberra.  More.....
24 February
Beach survey paves way for relief effort
ADF hydrographic and amphibious beach survey teams are finalising work to enable humanitarian assistance to begin on Pangaimotu Island in Tonga.  HMAS Adelaide's deployable geospatial support team and the amphibious beach team have conducted terrestrial reconnaissance on the island and its approaches so Operation Tonga Assist 2022 teams can begin clean-up efforts following last month's volcanic eruption and tsunami.  “The sea floor gradient around Pangaimotu is unusually steep, which allows HMAS Adelaide's landing craft to drive directly up to the shore and lower the door,” Navy hydrographer Lieutenant Thomas Leonards said.  More.....
24 February
Quilters stitch together a decade of support
Whether it is on a bed during deployments or on the lap of a veteran in hospital, a quilt made by volunteers from Aussie Hero Quilts adds colour and warmth to an otherwise sterile environment.  In the 10 years since the first quilt was sewn, organisation founder Jan-Maree Ball and her team have made 14,000 quilts and 33,000 laundry bags for ADF personnel.  Ms Ball founded Aussie Hero Quilts after hearing about an Aussie soldier being gifted a quilt by Americans in Germany.  She was unhappy it wasn’t an Australian quilt.  “I also didn’t like the way our Vietnam veterans were treated and wanted a way to show appreciation for their service,” she said.  More.....
23 February
Scientists help protect HMS Victory from the elements for the next 50 years
Boffins are looking for the best paint, glues and fastenings to keep Nelson’s flagship weatherproof and watertight for the next half century.  Engineers from the University of Southampton are working with HMS Victory’s conservators ahead of the next phase of a £35m revamp of the legendary warship: replacing rotting planks, repairing the structure of the hull and renewing the rigging.  The University’s nC2 Engineering Consultancy has designed a series of tests to assess the long-term performance of a range of paints, caulking and glues (sealants) and metal fastenings being considered for the overhaul.  More.....
23 February
Crew cleans remote beach
Some of the crew of HMAS Glenelg went ashore on the remote Cocos (Keeling) Islands to clean-up a beach during their recent deployment on Operation Resolute.  Direction Island – part of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands archipelago – is characterised by vivid blue waters, lush vegetation and pristine white beaches, however, its remote position in the Indian Ocean means a significant amount of rubbish washes ashore.  Commanding Officer HMAS Glenelg Lieutenant Commander Alexander nnis said he was pleased to be able to contribute to the environmental management of the area.  More.....
22 February
A Strong Voice For Victorian Veterans
Two new members have been appointed to the Victorian Veterans Council, renewing the veteran community’s representation to the Andrews Labor Government.  Minister for Veterans Shaun Leane today announced the appointment of Commodore Greg Yorke CSC RAN to the position of Chair and Lucy Saaroni as a Board Member of the Victorian Veterans Council.  Commodore Yorke has more than 40 years’ experience working for the Australian Government, primarily in Defence positions. He joined the Royal Australian Navy in 1974, completing more than eight sea postings, and has held numerous senior leadership positions in the Navy, including Senior Naval Officer Victoria since 2018.  More.....
21 February
Darwin maintenance centre plan progresses
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on February 18 announced the release of a tender for an industry partner to head a new Navy regional maintenance centre in Darwin.  The announcement was made during Mr Morrison's visit to HMAS Coonawarra.  The regional maintenance centre will support new capabilities, including the evolved Cape-class patrol boats and Arafura-class offshore patrol vessels expected to arrive in Darwin in the next few years.  More.....
21 February
Swarming drones in Abu Dhabi: UAE’s HALCON unveils new capability
HALCON, a regional leader in the production and supply of precision-guided weapons and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), revealed a swarming drone capability on the first day of the Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference (UMEX) in Abu Dhabi.  The drones, based on the Hunter 2 series UAV, will use artificial intelligence technology to share information with each other and to fly in a steady formation towards their target, HALCON CEO Saeed Al Mansoori told Breaking Defense.  “Once the target is identified, a decision is made among the swarm, and based on the target size, shape, and category, they decide how many drones are needed to destroy the target, like two or four or five, and then they start diving towards it,” Al Mansoori said Monday.  More.....
20 February
Prime Minister Scott Morrison accuses Chinese warship of 'reckless and irresponsible' act after laser was shone at RAAF aircraft
Prime Minister Scott Morrison says a Chinese military vessel shining a laser at an Australian maritime aircraft was an "act of intimidation" that put Defence Force lives at risk.  Defence says the incident occurred at 12:35am on Thursday, when an RAAF P-8A Poseidon detected a military-grade laser illuminating the aircraft while in flight just north of Australia.  Up to 10 personnel were on board the aircraft when the incident occurred. The Chinese vessel, in company with another People's Liberation Army-Navy (PLA-N) ship, was sailing east through the Arafura Sea at the time.  More.....
18 February
CNO Gilday: ‘We Need a Naval Force of Over 500 Ships’
The U.S. Navy needs a fleet of more than 500 ships to meet its commitments to the soon-to-be released National Defense Strategy, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday said on Friday.  “I’ve concluded – consistent with the analysis – that we need a naval force of over 500 ships,” Gilday said during the WEST 2022 conference, co-hosted by AFCEA and the U.S. Naval Institute.  “We need 12 carriers. We need a strong amphibious force to include nine big-deck amphibs and another 19 or 20 [LPDs] to support them. Perhaps 30 or more smaller amphibious ships to support Maritime Littoral Regiments… to 60 destroyers and probably 50 frigates, 70 attack submarines and a dozen ballistic missile submarines to about a 100 support ships and probably looking into the future about 150 unmanned.”  More.....
18 February
Coast Guard offloads $1 billion worth of cocaine, marijuana
A Coast Guard vessel on Thursday offloaded more than 30 metric tons of cocaine and marijuana reportedly worth over $1 billion that was seized at sea during a months-long deployment off the coast of South America.  The haul of illegal narcotics brought home by the Coast Guard cutter James was one of the biggest in recent memory, a reflection of increasingly sophisticated U.S. arsenal that includes powerful drones and special infrared cameras that can detect heat from small cocaine-laden vessels.  More.....
18 February

Navy team surveys Tonga below the waterline
A Navy hydrographic team is surveying Tonga's islands from under the waterline to ensure humanitarian efforts go unhindered.  The deployable geospatial support team (DGST) on board HMAS Adelaide collected and analysed hydrographic data from several Tongan islands to ensure personnel and stores could reach shore safely to assist with the recovery efforts.
17 February
Navy a supportive community
Moving to new towns and cities is often par for the course for a Defence member.  Petty Officer Daniel McRoe was not born in Tasmania, but the Apple Isle town of New Norfolk is the place he, his wife Natasha and their two children now call home.  He recently returned in HMAS Hobart when the destroyer visited the city for the Royal Hobart Regatta, held from February 12-14.  The community support is what Petty Officer McRoe said was so good about Tasmania.  More.....
17 February
'Accidental' career takes sailor home
Born and raised in Hobart, 27-year-old Leading Seaman Harriet Shepperd joined the Navy in 2016 “by accident”.  While enjoying her job as a pharmacist, she had seen the Defence Force Recruiting (DFR) staff at a nearby wharf and thought Navy sounded “cool”.  “Before I really knew it, I was going through the steps to join as a combat systems operator,” Leading Seaman Shepperd said.  “My ‘you’ session with DFR helped to identify a few options for me, but my mum was pretty influential in helping me make a decision at the time.  More.....
16 February
China’s New Submarine Is Unlike Anything In Western Navies
The U.S. Navy only operates nuclear-powered submarines. China meanwhile never stopped operating conventional submarines even though they are less capable.  This has advantages and disadvantages.  But a new submarine pushes this difference further.  It is much smaller than those used by other leading navies.  Since a video was leaked of a new Chinese submarine on February 8, analysts have been trying to make sense of it.  While the Chinese Navy’s (PLAN) overall submarine expansion has been towards larger submarines, notably nuclear-powered ones, this new boat does not fit the expected trend.  It may be sophisticated, but it is also small.  It does not neatly fit into the array of types currently fielded by other major navies.  China is, it appears, doing its own thing.  More.....
16 February
80th anniversary of the sinking of SS Vyner Brooke and the Bangka Island massacre
Today we honour the service and sacrifice of the women of the Australian Army Nursing Service who served in Singapore, 80 years on from the sinking of the SS Vyner Brooke and the tragedy of the Bangka Island massacre.  Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the massacre represented one of the darkest chapters of World War II, but the tenacity and compassion of the victims and survivors lived on today.  “The memory and legacy of the victims and the survivors will never be forgotten,” the Prime Minister said.  “On this day, we remember the one who survived, the 21 who fell, the 5,000 nurses who served in the Pacific, the Mediterranean, the Middle East and other theatres of the Second World War, as well as the many thousands of Australian nurses who have served in wartime over a century and more.  More.....
16 February

Australians and Fijians working together in Tonga
Australian Defence Force and Republic of Fiji Military Forces personnel are working side by side to clear tsunami debris, remediate eroded beaches and make community buildings safe on Atata Island in Tonga.
15 February
HMAS Supply arrives in Tonga
Navy auxiliary oiler replenishment ship HMAS Supply arrived in Tongan waters as part of Operation Tonga Assist 2022 on February 12.  The ship's company got down to work straightaway, conducting its first replenishment at sea (RAS) with HMAS Adelaide the same day.  HMAS Supply sailor Petty Officer Boatswain Michael Hirschausen oversaw the RAS and said it's a whole-ship evolution involving all departments on board the ship.  “Boatswains and boatswains’ mates manage the seamanship, engineers coordinate the refuelling, and electronics technicians assist with ship-to-ship communications,” Petty Officer Hirschausen said.  More.....
15 February
Crew trains hard in lead-up to deployment
HMAS Arunta’s ship’s company has been busy maintaining and enhancing their skills since departing their home port of Sydney last month for a regional presence deployment.  The passage up Australia’s eastern seaboard wasn’t a pleasure cruise for the crew of the Anzac-class frigate, with each day filled with a program of individual and collective training activities.  Training has ranged from enhancing technical skills, with routine maintenance and staying proficient in small-arms safety, through to more complex training such as flight-deck operations with Arunta’s embarked MH-60R Seahawk helicopter or whole-of-ship damage-control exercises.  More.....
15 February
Badge designer maintains Navy traditions
“Is it a badge or a crest?” is a question Paul 'Badger' Burnett is asked daily in his job as Manager Navy Badges.  “From my research, I believe the confusion came from American military during the 1940s and ’50s where they called their badges ‘crests’,” Mr Burnett said.  “In the past when there wasn't room for the badge or the full coat of arms, they took the top of the coat of arms, or crest, and put it on flags, patches, shields or capes.”  Starting his career as a graphic designer, Mr Burnett is now considered a specialist in Navy imagery and emblems.  More.....
15 February
Keeping an eye on space
Sailors have navigated by the stars since the dawn of time, but now Navy is looking skyward to understand who is observing us.  Deputy Director of Space in the Navy Intelligence and Information Warfare Branch, Lieutenant Commander Ben Piggott, completed the Bundeswehr (German military) space situational awareness course last November.  “It was a great introduction to the fundamentals of how we can use radars and telescopes to collect data on what satellites are doing in space, then turning that data into a picture that we can use for military situational understanding of what is happening in space in the same way a ship’s operations room has access to different sensors that can be used to form a picture that can be used to make decisions," Lieutenant Commander Piggott said.  More.....
14 February
Paying tribute to our 'Nashos'
Monday 14th February marks National Servicemen’s Day, when we honour the hundreds of thousands of young Australian men who served our nation through compulsory military service after the Second World War.  Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Andrew Gee said it was important to recognise those who stood up when called upon to defend our country.  “Australia’s ‘Nashos’, as they are affectionately nicknamed, made a significant contribution to our nation’s defence forces and rightfully wear the title with pride,” Minister Gee said.  “I encourage all Australians to take time to reflect on the service and sacrifice of these men and ensure they continue to be appropriately remembered.  More.....
14 February
HMAS Hobart impressive backdrop for regatta
Royal Australian Navy guided-missile destroyer HMAS Hobart has provided an impressive backdrop in the Derwent River for the 184th Royal Hobart Regatta from February 12-14.  No stranger to the region, Commanding Officer HMAS Hobart Commander Andrew Pepper said it was an honour to support such a vibrant community event.  “It’s a great feeling sailing home to Tasmania and I know the crew were looking forward to their time there,” Commander Pepper said.  More.....
14 February

Defence assistance to the aged-care sector
Australian Defence Force personnel across Australia are gearing up to further support the aged-care sector as part of Operation COVID-19 Assist.  The Australian Government announced Defence is expanding its contribution to the whole-of-government support to aged-care facilities by 200 personnel, with up to 1700 ADF personnel to provide support across Australia.
14 February

Navy meteorologist helps improve mission objectives
Royal Australian Navy meteorologist Lieutenant Danial Atwater is deployed on HMAS Adelaide as part of Operation Tonga Assist 2022, which is the Australian Defence Force contribution to the Australian Government's support to the Government of Tonga following the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcanic eruption on January 15.
10 February
ADF surges aged-care support
Australian Defence Force personnel across Australia are gearing up to further support the aged-care sector, following a request from Emergency Management Australia.  The Australian Government announced Defence is expanding its contribution to the whole-of-government support to aged-care facilities by 200 personnel, with up to 1700 ADF personnel available to provide support across Australia.  Commander ADF COVID-19 Task Force Rear Admiral Robert Plath is leading the planning and coordination team at the Department of Health to support the aged-care sector as part of Operation COVID-19 Assist.  “A 17-person planning and coordination team is already integrating with the Department of Health team in Canberra,” Rear Admiral Plath said.  More.....
10 February
Meet the civilian nurse trying to become the first pre-service amputee to join the US Navy
Hannah Cvancara was born with a birth defect called fibular hemimelia that resulted in her left leg never growing correctly and the amputation of her left foot when she was just a year old.  But 25 years later, she hasn’t let her reliance on a prosthetic leg stop her from living a full and physical life that includes surfing, rock climbing and long shifts on her feet as a civilian nurse.  Now, Cvancara is trying to make history by becoming the first pre-service amputee to join the Navy, and the Nurse Corps in particular.  More.....
10 February

58th Anniversary HMAS Voyager/Melbourne Collision
On the night of 10 February 1964, during night flying operations, the RAN’s flagship the aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne (II) was in collision with the Daring Class destroyer HMAS Voyager (II). Voyager was cut in two and 82 men were killed in what was the RAN’s worst peacetime loss of life. This extract from the Royal Australian Navy production "The History of the Royal Australian Navy Volume Three, 1945-1975" examines the events that led to the collision as well as its terrible aftermath.

10 February
The world has changed—and defence planning must too
For the moment, Defence Minister Peter Dutton has decided to stick with the troubled Hunter-class frigate program.  With his usual candour, he told The Australian last week:  ‘We looked very carefully at this project and we’ve decided that we will proceed with it.  The relationship with the United Kingdom is incredibly important. BAE is a very important partner with us.’  Workable strategy is always about the art of the possible.  The Hunter class will still be around after the election.  The challenge for the Department of Defence will be to see how it can fix a connected set of problems reportedly making the ship’s design overweight, top-heavy, underpowered, slower than planned and too lightly armed relative to Chinese vessels.  More.....
09 February
3 More Russian Navy Amphibs Enter the Black Sea
Three more Russian Navy Amphibious warships have entered the Black Sea following a trio that entered the region on Tuesday, Istanbul-based ship spotters told USNI News.  Ropucha-class ships tank landing ships RTS Georgy Pobedonosets (016), RTS Olenegorsky Gornyak (012) and the more modern Ivan Gren-class RTS Pyotr Morgunov transited the Bosporus on Wednesday.  The three amphibious warships followed the Ropucha-class RFS Minsk (127), RFS Korolev (130) and RFS Kaliningrad (102). A Kilo-class diesel-electric attack boat RTS Rostov-na-Donu (B-237) is expected to join the task group later this week.  The 4,000-ton Ropuchas can land up to 10 main battle tanks and a force of 350 troops while the larger Pyotr Morgunov can land 13 main battle tanks and 300 troops as well as field two attack helicopters.  More.....
09 February

HMAS Adelaide chefs rise to the occasion
HMAS Adelaide has endured two days of limited power while at anchor off Nuku’alofa in Tonga. Despite the lack of power in the ship HMAS Adelaide Chefs quickly adapted and continued to provide 2000 meals per day to the crew and embarked forces.

09 February
$3.5 million on offer to commemorate Australia’s service personnel
Ex-service and community organisations across the country can now apply for a share in $3.5 million for commemorative projects through the latest round of the Saluting Their Service grants program, which is now open.  Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Andrew Gee said the Australian Government had committed an extra $10 million to the ongoing program, offering more support for more organisations.  “The Saluting Their Service program has seen hundreds of worthy projects across Australia funded in recent years, to help local communities pay tribute to Australians who have served during wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations,” Minister Gee said.  More.....
08 February
A taste of Tonga for the crew
The Government of Tonga has expressed its gratitude for HMAS Adelaide’s delivery of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief stores by sending the ship a giant fresh fruit gift.  Adelaide received dozens of bags of coconuts, pineapples, bananas and watermelons after Tonga’s Prime Minister Siaosi Sovaleni phoned Commanding Officer Captain Stuart Watters to send best wishes and acknowledge the Australian Defence Force’s support.  “I was incredibly humbled by the gesture,” said Captain Watters.  “It is a fantastic gift and everyone is getting a little taste of Tonga.”  More.....
08 February
08 February

HMAS Adelaide delivers humanitarian stores to Tonga
08 February

Amphibious operations in Tonga
Since offloading 88 tonnes of humanitarian and disaster relief stores in Tonga’s capital Nuku’alofa, HMAS Adelaide and its embarked personnel, aircraft and equipment are supporting relief efforts on nearby islands.
06 February
Our February Hero:
Captain David John Hamer AM DSC

David Hamer was born in Melbourne on 5 September 1923, the youngest of four children of Hubert Hamer and his wife Elizabeth Anne, née McLuckie.  The Hamers became one of Australia’s most accomplished families. David’s oldest brother, Rupert (Dick) Hamer was Premier of Victoria from 1972 to 1981.  David, who served in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, had a distinguished career as a naval officer before entering the Parliament in 1969.  He was also an enthusiastic, fluent writer with two published books and numerous newspaper contributions and broadcasts.

Hamer received his primary education at Glamorgan, Toorak (1930–32) and Adwalton, Glen Iris (1932–33).  In 1934 he followed his brothers to Geelong Grammar School, but left at the end of 1936 when, after a competitive exam, he was selected for the Royal Australian Naval College (RANC) at Flinders Naval Depot to pursue his dream of a career in the navy.

He served onboard Australia as the Air Defence Officer, during her operations in the Philippines at Leyte Gulf in October 1944 and at Lingayen Gulf in January 1945, where he directed the ships anti-aircraft guns against frequent and multiple enemy air attacks.  Australia was subjected to repeated suicide aircraft (kamikaze) attacks and despite putting up a heavy barrage of anti-aircraft fire she was hit four times; losing three officers and 41 ratings killed and one officer and 68 ratings wounded.  Hamer was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross:
"for gallantry, skill and devotion to duty while serving in HMAS Australia in the successful assault operations in the Lingayen Gulf, Luzon Island".

His full story is in our Hero section:
04 February
A periodical of the Fleet Air Arm Association of Australia.
February Edition.....
04 February
Aussie in rescue mission in UK
A Royal Australian Navy officer on a training exercise in the UK found himself in the middle of a real-life rescue.  Lieutenant Dan Cochrane is an aviation warfare officer on a three-year exchange with the Royal Navy.  The 33-year-old from Melbourne was taking part in a search and rescue training flight when the helicopter crew picked up a garbled ‘Mayday’ distress call on their radio.  A kayaker had capsized in the wintry seas off Cornwall in south-west England – luckily just a few miles from where the crew was practising how to rescue people from the water.  More.....
03 February
Reconnaissance flights survey Tonga
After successfully delivering 88 tonnes of supplies to Tonga, the Australian Defence Force has responded to a request from the Government of Tonga for additional air and sea reconnaissance.  The ADF aviation capability assigned to Operation Tonga Assist includes three Australian Army CH-47F Chinook helicopters which operate from the flight deck of the Royal Australian Navy landing helicopter dock HMAS Adelaide.  Chinook detachment commander Major Richard Bremner said the initial flights provided an opportunity for the task group’s reconnaissance elements to gain greater understanding of the islands and the devastation caused.  “We have discovered more people on the islands than expected,” said Major Bremner.  More.....
02 February
Coordination crucial for Tonga mission
Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC) has establish a new cell to coordinate the international effort to assist with the response to the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano eruption in Tonga last month.  The Humanitarian and Disaster Relief (HADR) International Coordination Cell brings together defence personnel from Tonga, Fiji, Japan, France, New Zealand, Australia, United Kingdom and the United States.  Contributing nations are drawing on their combined HADR knowledge to coordinate arrival schedules, acquisition and delivery of specialist assistance equipment and supplies, and the integration of recovery work.  More.....
02 February
Hunter-class frigate report indicates Australian naval shipbuilding in disarray
The latest revelations about the Royal Australian Navy’s Hunter-class frigates confirm much of what we knew about the problems besetting the program, but add a level of granularity far beyond the general admissions made by Defence Department officials at earlier Senate committee hearings.  This new evidence is contained in the system design review exit report written by the Hunter program’s own engineering team in November 2021. It’s coming from the coal face and is as close to the ground truth as you can get.  More.....
02 February
Japan Coast Guard Issues Salvage Warning in South China Sea as Navy Prepares F-35C Recovery Operations
The Navy is preparing salvage operations for an F-35C Lighting II Joint Strike Fighter lost last week, U.S. 7th Fleet told USNI News on Monday.  “The U.S. Navy is making recovery operations arrangements for the F-35C aircraft involved in the crash aboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) in the South China Sea,” Cmdr. Hayley Sims told USNI News in a statement.  Though the service did not provide additional details, over the weekend the Japan Coast Guard issued a NAVAREA Navigational Warning on Saturday for salvage operations in the South China Sea.  More.....
02 February
Award dished out for meeting challenges
For many sailors, memories of a deployment are based on the ports you stepped off at and the food on board.  In 2020, HMAS Sirius left Australia on a Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) deployment, but there was no going ashore because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Without a senior sailor or victualler, chef Leading Seaman Tenielle Walter and her two able seaman set sail for 120 days, with 480 meals to prepare for the crew during the time away.  “It was a challenge, especially when I lost one of my able seaman [because of a posting] and there was only the two of us left in the galley,” Leading Seaman Walter said.  More.....
02 February
Arunta departs for three-month deployment
HMAS Arunta sailed from her home port of Fleet Base East on January 28 for a three-month regional presence deployment.  This is the first regional presence deployment for 2022.  While deployed, the ship will undertake a number of navy-to-navy activities with Australia’s regional partners, as well as participate in various maritime exercises.  Commanding Officer Arunta Commander Woolrych said the ship’s company was well-prepared for the various tasks the ship would be assigned over the next three months.  More.....
01 February
HMAS Adelaide Suffers Power Outage During Tonga Aid Operations
Landing helicopter dock HMAS Adelaide (L01), currently engaged in humanitarian and disaster relief operations in Tonga, has suffered a power outrage, the Australian Department of Defence confirmed today.  The outage has not affected the ship’s ability to respond to any requirements in Tonga.  The statement from the Australian DOD followed Australian media reports on the outage. The DOD confirmed that the outage has not impacted food supplies, air conditioning is functioning aboard much of the ship, the sanitation and refrigeration systems are functioning and that the ship is not being towed.  The statement did not say how long the ship has been without power, but Australia’s ABC News reported today that it had been without power for several days already.  The DoD statement said the ship turned on back-up power “to restore essential systems.”  More.....
01 February
$27 Million for new Veteran Wellbeing Grants
The Australian Government is investing $27 million to help fund bigger, better and more innovative programs to support the wellbeing of current and former Australian Defence Force personnel and their families.  Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Defence Personnel Andrew Gee said the new Veteran Wellbeing Grants program would help find and develop new ways to help the veteran community.  “I want to see ambitious and innovative ideas from right across the community that are going to make a real difference in the lives of our current and former service personnel and their families,” Minister Gee said.  More.....
01 February
ADF driving support to Victoria
The Australian Defence Force is assisting the Victorian Government with ambulance drivers and planners as part of Operation COVID-19 Assist.  Responding to an Emergency Management Australia request, the ADF is providing 20 ambulance drivers to Ambulance Victoria and six planners to Emergency Management Victoria from January, 20.  The ADF personnel working as ambulance drivers will partner with paramedics on non-urgent tasks after being trained at the Ambulance Victoria Training Centre.  More.....
01 February
Indigenous anthem hits the right note
The Air Force Band and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians from across the Australian Defence Force have recorded a new instrumental version of the Australian national anthem, featuring Indigenous instruments.  Air Force Band executive officer, Flight Lieutenant Aaron Michael, said the goal was to create a synergy between all the instruments.  “It was exciting to work in collaboration with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander musicians from all services to create a true Australian sound,” Flight Lieutenant Michael said.  Navy sailor Leading Seaman Henry Burns, who is a Torres Strait Islander from the Ayte Koedal clan, played the conch shell and wooden pate drum for the recording.  More.....
01 February
Australian Defence Force Retirees Association Inc.
Federal Court Hearing

Yesterday’s short hearing of Clinton McKenzie’s matter in the Federal Court took an unexpected but positive turn from ADFRA’s perspective. Justice Perry recognized the potential significance of the outcome of the matter for a large number of former members of the Australian Defence Force, their widows, widowers and dependent children and orphans. Accordingly, her Honour issued an order requiring the Federal Court Registrar to attempt to arrange Pro Bono legal assistance for Clinton.  Download the document.....
01 February
January 2022 MMHN Update
Moving forward against the headwinds of the persistent pandemic storm is enough to challenge anyone’s buoyancy! However, given that maritime stakeholders are resilient and the MMHN Board is an optimistic enthusiastic crew, we have plans and projects aplenty. Who knows – with a federal election looming and a state Parliamentary Inquiry into Heritage Protection in progress, perhaps 2022 may see urgently needed new directions charted in relation to maritime heritage and the maritime industry in Australia.  More.....
01 February

01 February

Tongan homecoming for ADF personnel
01 February 2022

Operation Tonga Assist - HMAS Adelaide has arrived in Tonga
HMAS Adelaide has arrived in Tonga, ready to deliver more than 250 pallets of humanitarian stores to the Government of Tonga. Stores on board include water testing kits, tarpaulins, shelters, dignity and hygiene kits and kitchen kits.
01 February 2022

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10 Feb
- HMAS Voyager Service

14 Feb
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15 Feb
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19 Feb
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01 Mar
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01 Mar
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