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Name: Eamonn Martin Gosney
National Pensions and Welfare Coordinator
Naval Association of Australia
'Once Navy - Always Navy'
Mr Les Dwyer
Dear Mr Dwyer
I am writing to you about a grave injustice which took place in 1924 concerning
Lancelot Macgregor Saidler, who was accussed of setting fire to HMAS Tingira and
subsequently given a Services No Longer Required (SNLR) discharge.
The truth is, Lancelot wasn't the one responsible (he was just the fall guy).
What would be required to have RAN Boy 1st Class Lancelot Macgregor Saidler's
SNLR discharge rescinded, and for him to be reinstated as a fully-fledged member
in good graces of the Royal Australian Navy?
Name: Eamonn Martin Gosney
Well it has almost been a decade since I was last here, and in that time we have
all grown a little older; including the RAN, now reaching her first 100.
Today I was reading about Lancelot Macgregor Saidler, a youngster who joined the
RAN as a Boy 2nd Class on 11 March 1924, at age 16:
A young man who seemed to have so much going for him in July 1924 (destined for
a long naval career). But this wasn't to be. Within a month he's in-the-soup
good and proper; accused of setting fire to the ship, collects his 'snarler' on
the way out, and then a fatal bullet at the age of 22.
Here one day, gone the next..
In case I don't make it back this way again..
Nice knowing you all..
Name: ron barnes
City: south melbourne
has anybody else lost 4c in the dollar on 2nd income stream(dfrdb)which amounts
to a loss of $30 pf, cleanenergy/household assistance gone mad no compo for
Name: Stephen Hoad
I Have recently come into contact with what i believe to be an original set of
medals belonging to a Mark John Sheil r106548,i have found out that mark was
with hmas Sydney and served early 1972 he has aasm vietnam clasp, vietnam
supportand logistics aswell as asm PNG. As a current defence force medal I very
much under stand the Sentimental value of these medals and im currently trying
to search for Mark or his family. if anyone can provide me with any information
in regards to mark or his family or even the avenues that i can go down to find
them it wouldbe much appreciated. Stephen 0422644126
Name: Lyndall Sullivan
City: Summerland Point
Is there an RAN Veterans Welfare Association for NSW please?
I would be very grateful to know.
Sorry, our association does not operate any offices in the
I have been in cronic pain since 1990 due to a motorbike accident.Both my left
limbs were amputated and my left shoulder was crushed leaving me with half an
arm that causes me great pain 24/7. The only relief I have is marajuana but the
Queensland government will not legalise Marajuana for medical reasons. Is there
any one out there who can help on this subject and how to get a submition to the
government to review the whole matter if Marajuana for cronic pain (that will
not cease), where traditional medicine does not work.
I am enquiring about the appleal to upgrade the ASM to AASM for Rifle Company
Butterworth which was lodged through NMBVAA. I would like to know if the appeal
has been lodged and has there has been a response by the Department of Defence.
Reason, I was there in Sept to Nov 1975 with 2/4 RAR.
Date: 26 Aug 2005
Zeb ya ole buggar did Bruce answer you or not I've a bitch going with Deanne
Kelly re Medication and cost to Vets for accepted disabilities paying the
co-payment that little johnny introduced some years back. I can tell you now I
aint holding my breath.Hows the bike riding (pushie that is)goin haven't seen ya
for a few year ole chap keep ripping it into them as all of us should be doin to
their local member
Date: 21 august 2005
Hello, I am a daughter of an ex WO from RAN. He has been diagnosed of PTSD since
the Melbourne/Voyager incident. I was wondering if there were any other children
of serving men/women from the accident, that would be able to get in contact
with me. I would like to understand my father, but feel that perhaps he will
always be "top secret". I would like to know whether this is a
personality trait or a byproduct of the accident.
I am an ex sailor spent most of my time on HMAS Melbourne due to sea sickness,
and unfortunately was involved in the Melbourne / Voyager accident and later 2
trips to Vietnam.
I now suffer PTSD badly coused mainly from the Merlbourne / Voyager accident but
inhanced greatly when I received notification that we were of to war.
I am fighting with DVA to get compensation, As I whitnessed an accident on one
of the 2 trips where a Venom aircraft missed the arrestor wires and ditched
overboard where the pilot lost his life, DVA require I come up with date and
what trip we were on, unfortunately after some 40 years my memory has become a
Does anyboby remember or know where I could find out the information on the
accident, otherwise DVA is not interested in helping
Nany Thanks Nessy......
I would like to communicate with anybody serving in the FAA 805 squadron whilst
on HMAS Melbourne on route to Vietnam Approx.1965 and remembers the accident of
a Sea Venom ditching overboard and killing the pilot, I would greatly appreciate
any leads or information regarding this event
Many Thanks Nessy
Date: I Oct 2004
It's good to see you getting out and having a few beers.
( Tuggeranong Valley Rugby Union Football Club -- http://www.pussersgreenies.org/meets.html
I am trying to find out details for HMAS Derwent (1974-1975) with regards to
trips up top (SCS, Bangkok)for references to the US Container Ship Hijacked in
the Gulf of Thailand
I have been advised by the National Malaya & Borneo Veteran's Association
Australia (Inc) that in recognition of the work done by Commonwealth forces
during the first Malayan Emergency and the Confrontation the Malaysian
Government has struck a medal. Members of the NMBVAA should forward their
details (O/N, name, rank on discharge, Ship and dates deployed) to Clive Wills
the Brisbane Sub Branch President ASAP. eg., HMAS VENDETTA first patrol 31
August 1965 Malacca etc. The Association will forward a nominal list of members
to the Australian High Commissioner in KL for forwarding to the Malaysian
Government for consideration of eligibility. At this time those who saw service
in Malaya and Borneo who are not members of the Association will have to make
their own applications to the Malaysian Government. When more info is available
I will pass it on. Anyone wanting to join the NMBVAA (our members are of many
nationalities and include all three services, police, medical, civil admin etc)
or requring information please contact me on 07 4163 2196.
Email: goz at elvis.com
Date: 18 June 2004
I wouldn't want anyone, reading some of my recent postings on this Forum, to get
the idea that I believe that the government doesn't need any improvement.
So I am posting some information on one of the issues which is close to my
heart, where I believe changes would be welcome. It is to do with medical
matters and some of the questionable activities that take place:
Animal Sacrifices or Science
Professor of medicine -- who used to be an animal experimenter -- renounces the
unscientific rituals dogmatically shoved down his throat at medical school.
To find out what the professor is talking about (there are several webpages --
by clicking 'Next panel' at the bottom of each page, you will be taken to the
WARNING: This is highly disturbing material of creatures in horrific conditions.
If you get upset from viewing such, it might be best if you don't:
Click here to view:
Date: 22 May 2004
I have located Brian 'wacka' Payne (ME) and have a last known address and phone
number for Bob 'Doc' Barr (LSBA).
Date: 21 May 2004
Looking for old crew mates
Does anyone have any contact info for any of the following ex-pusser's who I
served with in HMAS Hawk in 1966?
Brian (Lofty) Hain ex-Cook
Cliff Jamieson ex-Stoker
'Wacka' Payne ex-Stoker
LSQMG Pete Noonan
LAMET 'Buck' Raynor
Thanks & Regards,
Email: goz at elvis.com
Date: 2 May 2004
I'm sorry to hear of your disillusionment with the current system.
I have been perusing the AAT website, and reading how the Administrative Appeals
Tribunal (AAT) provides independent review of a wide range of administrative
decisions made by the Australian government. And reading about the fair,
impartial and high quality review that the AAT provides to the individuals and
government agencies who use its services. http://www.aat.gov.au
In making a claim that is disputed there are several forms of evidence
DVA refers to the ROP (Report of proceedings) which are signed off by the CO
every month. Ships Logs are also used (if they can be found) Medical records
which are unfavorable are also used, nothing to do with the claim, just used to
discredit the plaintiff.
The ROP never refers to ALL the events that occur and its left to the plaintiff
to provide letters from shipmates etc to support his story.
We are all not equal in the eyes of the law when a verbal recollection of events
is in dispute.
This is especially so if the dispute reflects on past conflicts with our near
neighbours that could sour existing relations or that former officers career's
could be tarnished.
I am sure that other ex vets will relate to this.
You have more chance of finding a supportive friend in the Mission to Seaman
than in the Naval & Military Club.
This is my last word on the subject.
Email: goz at elvis.com
Date: 30 April 2004
Dear Mr Potts
You claim that a former Naval Officer confessed on his death bed that he had
lied to the Voyager Royal commission, and from reading transcripts from AAT
hearings over several years this practice
is not unusual.
Do you have copies of these transcripts which show Naval Officers lying -- to
back up your claim?
I served in the RAN 64-84. Anzac, Vendetta, Queenborough,Stuart,
Vampire, Tarangau, Parramatta, Derwent and Swan paid off as a CPOUC. Does
that satisfy Mr Gosney?.
The comments regarding DVA are mine. I used the wrong section of the board. My
apologies to the Webmaster who I was becoming tetsy with.
Email: goz at elvis.com
Date: 27 April 2004
Dear 'Name not supplied for publication'
I'm interested in why you didn't put your name to what you posted.
Do you fear for your life?
Do you believe your phone will be tapped?
Do you believe a squad of armed balaclavaed commandos will storm your bedroom
If you post on a website somewhere, the evidence you claim to have acumulated,
and put your name to the webpage, people may then look at it as more than
NOTE: The reason for the senders name not being posted was that the original
message was not sent in the Open Forum format and as such did not have the
details that are normally visible. It was my decision to post the message in
Open Forum after contacting the writer. The writer has nothing to hide from his
action and was posting the message to warn other people to be wary of any
dealings with DVA after his past experiences in making a claim.
Name not supplied for publication
A former Naval Officer confessed on his death bed that he had lied to
the Voyager Royal commission.
Reading transcripts from AAT hearings over several years this practice
is not unusual.
In making a claim against DVA ex RAN lower deck personnel should
expect to be humiliated and discredited by those who professed
profusely that loyalty extends upwards and downwards.
Those who accept 30 pieces of silver in assisting DVA I offer nothing
Here is a list of participants in our USA ex-RAN meet & greet:
Steve Grinrod (organized the accomodation but was unable to make it to the
Bomber (Nev) & Stella Brown
Robert (Prof) Caudwell (spouse unable to attend)
Des & Catherine Edwards
Les & Lynne Figg
Rob & Carol Hall
'Sam' & John Perales
Bill & Barbara Pierce
Peter & Marian Pincombe
Mick and Nikki Reilly
Neville Sharp & Helen Miller
Mike & Sally Thomas, and Mike's son & daughter
Jack & Anita Thompson
Wayne & Cathy Whitby
We had our ex-RAN meet & greet in Cayucos Beach, CA this past weekend. What
a blast! We had a total of 13 ex-sailors, 12 spouses/partners and 2 adult kids.
2 ex-sailors did know anyone in the group, most knew one or two, and a couple
had served with 4 or 5 others in the group. Within a very short period of time
everyone, including spouses/partners were interacting like we had know each
other all our lives. Ages ranged from the 70s to the 40s - the earliest year of
enlistment was 1952 and the most recent 1982. The event was an outstanding
success and will become an annual event.
All but one couple live in California, having driven between 20 and 300 miles to
get to the location. One couple flew in from Chicago.
17 of us arrived on Friday and 'socialized until about 1:30am. Saturday saw a
large part of the group sampling the produce of the local vineyards.
Saturday evening we had a BBQ dinner and continued socializing well into the
Date: 15 April 2004
When I was over in Longbeach California for 14 months on HMAS Perth in 1975, I
was given a month's r&r (rest and recreation).
Myself and a Navy buddy travelled around by Greyhound bus for the month and
visited 28 different states.
Here we both are in New York:
Does his face look familiar to anyone? Would love to hear from him.
My name is John RASPE
Am Looking for anyone who served on HMAS VENDETTA D08 Vietnam 69/70 now residing
Need Contact info Suburb - City - Tel - Mob - Email etc etc
Any suggestions Can U help
Someone just may someone who served on the
HMAS VENDETTA D08 VIETNAM TOUR OF DUTY
Maybe YOU could place this email on any notice board
or at your local RSL Sub-Branch in YOUR State and or any RSL SUB-BRANCHES AND
PLEASE REPLY TO MY EMAIL ADDRESS
Date: 9 April 2004
I have an interest in entity possession and have been reading this fascinating
piece about a Vietnam veteran who had the spirits of his buddies inhabiting his
body with him:
The more I find out about this captivating subject, the more amazed I become.
And what about this incredible statistic: that out of the approximate 1,600,000
American soldiers who served in Vietnam -- 800,000 have had severe emotional and
psychological problems since the war.
Heroes worthy of medals, say families
FAMILIES of sailors killed in a fire on the tanker HMAS Westralia want their
children to be properly recognised with bravery awards.
In a submission to the Senate's inquiry into the military justice system, Victor
Meek said his son, Leading Seaman Bradley Meek, deserved an individual bravery
medal for his heroism in saving other sailors.
Ldg Seaman Meek, 25, died from smoke inhalation after herding crew mates to
safety from a fire in the ship's engine room in 1998.
Four sailors who died in the fire were recognised with posthumous awards in
But relatives have made submissions to the Senate inquiry that some awards given
to survivors were undeserved and some of the dead were not honoured
"For his heroic actions, he (Ldg Seaman Meek) only received a group
citation along with everyone else in the engine room and three hose teams,"
Mr Meek's submission said.
"I believe my son's heroism was exceptional and for saving some of his
fellow crew mates before thinking of his own safety he should be posthumously
awarded the George Cross."
Lyndon Pelly, whose 22-year-old daughter Megan also died in the fire, said it
was remarkable that Ldg Seaman Meek was overlooked for an individual bravery
The George Cross is the highest British award for civilians and military
personnel for heroism not in the face of the enemy. In Australia, the imperial
awards system was superseded by Australian awards in 1991.
Iraq campaign medal mooted
February 24, 2004 - 4:05PM
The government is considering whether to award Australian military personnel a
special campaign medal for involvement in the Iraq war.
That follows the British government's decision to award military personnel and
some civilians, including accredited war correspondents, medals acknowledging
their collective bravery.
The US is also planning to award its personnel a special campaign medal.
A spokesman for defence personnel minister Mal Brough said those who served a
minimum of one day in Iraq were eligible for the Australian Active Service
"The government is currently considering a campaign medal," he said.
"Individuals who have given outstanding service are awarded individual
The issue of suitable recognition for Australians personnel who participated in
the Iraq conflict emerged even before the fighting ended with suggestions that
the conflict warranted its own specific campaign medal.
Commander of Australian forces in the Middle East Brigadier Maurie McNarn said
at the time that all those who served in the war in Iraq would receive the
Australian Active Service Medal with Iraq clasp.
He said he expected many of the troops would like a specific campaign medal like
that issued to those who served in East Timor.
"It is something that the government and (defence force chief) General
(Peter) Cosgrove will look at once we cease operations," he said.
"We are now the only country not to establish a campaign medal," said
one unnamed Australian officer who served in the conflict.
This story was found at: http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/02/24/1077594812289.html
Date: 17 Feb 2004
Do you like Short Stories and Poems...or maybe Tall Tales?
If you would like to read some Short Stories -- or you have one or two literary
pieces up your sleeve which you would like to add -- please visit our little
Short Story place:
Date: 15 Feb 2004
I'm wondering if someone can explain something to me about the Navy.
Here is my story:
I joined the Royal Australian Navy as a Junior Recruit at the beginning of 1972.
I was a 16-year-old and signed up for 12 years.
During my time in the Navy, I served on the DDG HMAS Perth, the patrol boat HMAS
Attack, the oceanographic research vessel HMAS Diamantina -- and finally -- the
aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne.
Whilst on HMAS Melbourne, I went home on leave from Sydney where the Melbourne
was, to Karratha WA where my parents were. On the way home I was arrested for
possession of marijuana, and spent an overnight stay at the Geraldton WA police
lockup. Next day I fronted a judge and was fined $100. I continued on up the
coast to Karratha without further incident, and made it home.
When I returned to HMAS Melbourne, after completion of my leave, I asked to
leave the Navy. I was sent to the hospital at HMAS Penguin "for
observation" for a few weeks. Returning to HMAS Melbourne I was told by my
Divisional Officer that I could either stay in the Navy and complete my 12 years
-- or I could leave if I wished to.
I told him I wished to go.
After having served 7.5 years, I was subsequently discharged from the Royal
Australian Navy -- Services No Longer Required.
What I would like to know is, why the Royal Australian Navy chooses to punish
the men and women who have served this country -- simply because they decide to
Why does the Royal Australian Navy feel the need to be so vindictive?
If somebody, wishes to leave, why can't the Navy just say -- "Fine -- here
is your discharge, thanks for your service to your country."
Why does the Navy (the Admiralty in Canberra) feel the need to humiliate
servicemen who wish to leave -- by issuing them with a "snarler"
(Services No Longer Required)?
There is a bloke here in Mandurah that is a TPI that was there during that
incident,his nickname is Side Winder and I believe due to his injuries he was
flown back to Australia from Vietnam.
It is another part of the Conflict in Vietnam that should be recorded
i would like to see an incident acknowledged, that occured on HMAS
Hobart during her first deployment to vietnam . We were at action stations
providing NGS ,when we came under fire from enemy shore batteries . the captain
called down to the engine room for revolutions for 25 knots . the leading stoker
on the throttle wheel , apparently "lost the plot" and cranked the
revs on too fast . This had the effect of shutting down the propulsion system .
the lights went out , and you could hear the turbines slowing to a stop . to
anyone below decks it appeared that we had been hit by enemy fire and that we
were a sitting duck waiting for the water to come rushing in . after a while the
turbines came back on line and we proceeded away from the shore . I personally
have suffered from PTSD as a result of this incident . i have no doubt that
others have also been affected . when i claimed compensation , i had to prove
that this incident took place because no record of it was kept . i would like to
see the government acknowledge this incident , if only to save others some of
the anguish when dealing with the DVA...reguards...rob
Call for Gulf War syndrome review
A senior lawyer has demanded a public review of the issues surrounding Gulf War
Thousands of veterans have suffered a diverse range of illnesses, which many
blame on injections administered before the conflict.
But there has been no conclusive scientific proof that the illnesses are related
to the conflict.
The Bar Council chairman has now written to Lord Morris of Manchester, who has
campaigned for the veterans.
Stephen Irwin QC is backed by other lawyers, who believe that even in the
absence of a legal case, the government should look again at the plight of the
There is not enough evidence to show negligence on the part of the Ministry of
But Labour peer Lord Morris said many armed forces personnel had to undergo a
"blitzkrieg" of injections before the conflict.
On Saturday, he will delivering the letter to Downing Street.
In it, Mr Irwin wrote: "There is no doubt that many of them are ill. It is
accepted by experts worldwide that the veterans suffer ill health which is
associated with their active service in the Gulf.
"Science has not explained the mechanism or mechanisms of their illness,
much less that their suffering has resulted from fault.
"Nevertheless, we firmly believe that for very many veterans, their
suffering is genuine and has a significant impact on their daily lives and the
lives of their families."
He continues: "We would ask government to consider instituting a full
public review of the position of the veterans - as has been called for by the
Royal British Legion - and to instigate a process of conciliation with the
"This should be designed to mark the effects of war service on the veterans
who are suffering and to make good, by ex gratia payments, the deficiencies of
the War Pension Scheme."
As many as 2,000 ex-servicemen and women believe they have the condition which
is said to involve symptoms as wide as neurological problems, headaches,
depression, muscle weakness, joint and muscle pain, sleep disturbance, skin
rashes and shortness of breath.
Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2004/02/07 05:38:19 GMT
© BBC MMIV
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Wednesday, January 28, 2004 10:39 PM
Subject: Moral Guardians
Advocate - Vietnam Veterans Motorcycle Club
4 Brooker St
Woodford QLD 4514
(07) 5496 3444
With regard to the article you wrote in the Australian dated 23 Jan
04. I find that I must comment on your use of the "moral" without
actually referring to the material content.
Let me quote you -
1. "There is a moral case to be made for the
policies of the Howard Government."
2. "To some the moral quality of a government
which has stood up for Australian values ..."
3. "Moral courage is not doing what's right when
everyone else agrees. Moral courage is doing what's right when people who
should know better declare you're
wrong. By this test the Howard Government has repeatedly demonstrated that
worthy of the Australian people's
4. "Moralists will continue to question how the
fall of Hussein, the liberation of East Timor ... has been brought about - but
they can't deny the moral
seriousness of the government that helped to make them happen."
5. "Sending troops into battle is by far the
weightiest decision that a government can make."
Some 6 years ago a campaign was started simultaneously by myself
and by John "Blue" Ryan (now National President of the TPI Federation)
to get your government via the then Minister for Veterans' Affairs, Bruce Scott,
to look at the serious erosion in veterans' entitlements and in particular the
TPI (Totally and Permanently Incapacitated) and War Widows rates. Myself
and Keith Payne VC had a meeting in Brisbane with John Perrin from the PM's
office on these issues in March 2000. When the issues were first presented
to Scott by me in February 1999, it took several reminders and 6 months and a
day to eventually get a meaningless response.
Now tell me about "morals".
In February of 1996 the Liberal/National Coalition put out a policy
statement on veterans' issues and one of these was the promise to review the
"apparent anomoly" of the Social Security Act stating that veterans'
disability pensions were counted as "income" when applying for
benefits from then DSS. The Veterans' Entitlement Act '86 and the
appropriate Taxation Acts have always stated that veterans' disability payments
are never counted as "income" or "earnings" and this has
been the case since 1917. Your Liberal/National Coalition made this
promise in opposition in February 1996 and has yet to do anything about this
"apparent anomoly". Look that up in a Thesaurus and you will
find that an "apparent anomoly" can also be stated as an "obvious
error". Don't review it, fix it as promised.
Now tell me about "morals".
In June 2003 a TPI protest was held outside Parliament House in
Canberra from the 16th to the 19th by veterans who had travelled from North
Queensland and Western Australia and points in between. These men and
families who are not well - that's why they are deemed TPI, travelled at great
expense, which they cannot afford, to protest as there is NO RESPONSE from
government on their claims. The PM went to Sydney to welcome home the
troops from Iraq but could not travel 200 metres to talk to old diggers about
very real problems. Minister Vale also could not travel that same short
200 metres. The PM travelled to Roma and Mitchell to talk to farmers and
stated (Australian, 5/6 July 03) - "Nothing beats coming out here and
having a look with our own eyes at the land and the vegetation...It gives you a
much better understanding of it than if you just stay in a cubby hole somewhere
else in the country." The PM can go to the farmers and he can go to
welcome the troops home but he cannot walk 200 metres to talk to old diggers
about our well publicised and very real problems.
Now tell me about "morals".
One of the many issues that have been a part of the TPI Campaign
for a Fair Go has also been the War Widows Pension rate. Keith Payne VC
and I raised this issue with John Perrin some 4 years back. For the first
time in over 39 years this country has had a War Widow - Kylie Russell, as a
direct result of combat rather than as a result of War Caused
Disability/Disease. Kylie gets the princely sum of $13,000 pa. We
have been campaigning on this issue for over 6 years and what do we get ?
Danna Vale telling us that Kylie also got a "lump sum" of some
$93,000. What she didn't tell everbody was that Sgt Russell's
superannuation paid that and it would have also been paid should he have walked
under a bus in Perth ! Smoke and mirrors. Vale also said on a
morning TV show last year that TPI's can "earn" up to $1,900 per
fortnight with a set of very dodgy figures. She cites a married TPI with
qualifying service and two teenage children. This is a circumstance that
is almost unknown. Qualifying service is for people who served in Vietnam
then a jump to Timor/Afghanistan/Iraq. Vietnam veterans are few who are
still married and with teenage children, I have teenage grandchildren and a
greatgrandchild. TPI Veterans from Timor/Afghanistan/Iraq with teenage children
are also very few if any. The other monies she quites are available to the
general public (child allowance etc) and are NOT a part of the TPI Compensation
package. More smoke and mirrors. Meanwhile Kylie Russell gets a
"generous" $13,000 pa for losing her husband. She was also NOT
invited to the recent functions in Canberra that involved memorials to her
husband or the BBQ's with Howard/Bush et al, despite sporting names and
"celebrities" getting an invite. Kykie didn't even know about
these events until she heard it on the radio/ saw it on TV.
Now tell me about "morals".
Quote #5 from above states - "Sending troops into battle is by
far the weightiest decision that a government can make." It's a pity
that the troops are ignored and abandoned when they have been used and abused
Now tell me about "morals".
In February 2001 I wrote to my local member Mal Brough and asked
him to clarify four "mantras" often used by government. They
were - 1. User Pays. 2. Mutual Obligation. 3. Enterprise
Bargaining. 4. Collective Bargaining. TPI's feel that
when it comes to User Pays then government is the "User" having used
our perfectly good bodies and minds (attested by the very thorough medicals
before embarkation) and those minds and bodies not being returned in anywhere
near the same good working order. That's why we get TPI and that it is
nowhere near the rate that it should be and has been allowed to erode over many
years is a national shame.
Now tell me about "morals".
The Mutual Obligation is owed to us not by us. We TPI's have
already paid the price and government seems to think that we should get bargain
Now tell me about "morals".
We are told that Enterprise Bargaining is the model that your
government uses yet we TPI's cannot get a look in the door when we try
Enterprise Bargaining and we don't even get a visit to talk about the real
problems when all that was required was a 200 metre walk.
We are told that the previous Collective Bargaining is out as far
as industrial relations are concerned yet when we TPI's want to talk to
government we are told that we must do it through our Ex-Service peak bodies in
what amounts to Collective Bargaining.
The letter to Mal Brough of February of 2001 is still unanswered
despite my having brough it to the attention of him and his staff.
Now tell me about "morals".
You are prepared to "Send troops into battle" yet your
current Foreign Minister was not prepared to do so himself in the Vietnam era
and conveniently found himself in the UK to avoid conscription. Did he
even register for National Service, sure the day before and the day after his
birthday was ballotted but was he registered for that ballott ? Your
current Minister for Defence was a National Service deferee who
"found" himself in the UK whilst under deferment and was ironically
"saved" by Whitlam canning NS. Your previous Minister for
Defence was also a draft dodger. Despite all this sabre rattling by these
people you can still make a throw away line like in Quote #5.
Now tell me about "morals".
To quote your article about the Russell Crowe film, you state -
"...the alternative to losing a man overboard is losing the entire
ship..." It would seem that TPI's have, yet again, been "lost
overboard", but it's OK, we "saved" the rest of the crew.
Advocate, Past President, Life Member, Founder - Vietnam Veterans
this is just for information something I saw on the cbs news web site.There are
different stories relating to this one but would take up too much room on this
Secrecy Over Cold War WMD Tests
WASHINGTON, Jan. 16, 2004
The Pentagon is continuing to withhold documents on Cold War chemical and
biological weapons tests that used unsuspecting sailors as "human
samplers" after telling Congress it had released all medically relevant
In response to questions from The Associated Press about a deposition last month
by a former military scientist, J. Clifton Spendlove, who planned and supervised
the testing program, the Defense Department acknowledged this week it still has
documents laying out the scope and methods of the tests.
Detailed planning documents and reports for each of the tests are classified
because they identify vulnerabilities of military vessels to chemical and
biological warfare agents and capabilities for delivering the agents, the
Pentagon said in a response to questions from the AP.
In some cases, samples were taken from sailors to measure their exposure to
tracers used to simulate chemical and biological agents, the Pentagon's written
statement said. Reports on them were not released because they "did not
include any plans or data that measured human effects," according to the
Project 112 and the Shipboard Hazard and Defense Project consisted of 50 tests
conducted between 1962 and 1973. The tests were conducted in Alaska, Maryland,
Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Utah, Panama, Canada and Britain and aboard ships in
the North Atlantic and Pacific oceans.
CBS News Correspondent Vince Gonzales first reported in May 2000 on the more
than 100 secret tests, some of which bore names like Autumn Gold, Copper Head,
Flower Drum or Fearless Johnny.
The secretive tests involved 5,842 soldiers and sailors - many of whom were
unwitting guinea pigs.
The experiments were designed to determine the effectiveness of biological and
chemical agents in combat and methods to protect troops from attacks. An untold
number of civilians also may have been exposed during some of the tests on the
In most cases, supposedly harmless simulants were used to mimic anthrax, E. coli
or other agents, although in a number of cases potentially deadly nerve agents
were used, including sarin and VX.
Numerous veterans say they are now suffering from illnesses because of exposure,
but the Veterans Affairs Administration has denied requests for health care
After a three-year investigation that Pentagon officials characterized as
"exhaustive," the Defense Department released an overview of the tests
and a series of fact sheets last June and then disbanded the probe.
But the overview and fact sheets didn't acknowledge the documents and films that
were obtained by the plaintiffs and authenticated by Spendlove, including
results of tests to determine how much of the chemical simulants the "human
samplers" were exposed to.
The Pentagon had already issued its first set of findings before it contacted
Spendlove, who planned the Project 112 tests from the Deseret Test Center in
Spendlove, in sworn testimony in a federal court lawsuit in Washington on behalf
of the veterans, said sailors were used in the tests as "human
samplers" and cited several documents and films laying out the scope and
methods of the tests.
During his deposition, Spendlove was shown reports and films from a few of the
tests that were obtained by the plaintiffs. He identified ships and individuals
and vouched for their authenticity and indicated many more
documents are likely stored at the library at the Deseret center where the
testing program was headquartered.
In one of the plaintiffs' films, a soldier is loading the orange-tinted simulant
used to mimic anthrax or other biological agents into a plane that would spray
it on a boat. He is not wearing any protective equipment and is
caked with the substance.
Spendlove's account was corroborated by Norman LaChapelle, a top Navy officer on
the project, in an interview this week with the AP.
But LaChapelle, a retired Navy commander who is now in charge of chemical and
biological weapons response for the city of Memphis, said he was never contacted
by the Pentagon in its investigation.
"(Darn) right I was surprised" at not being contacted, said LaChapelle,
who was in charge of the execution of the SHAD tests from 1964-1970. "We
were involved in it. We weren't sitting in Salt Lake City. We were sitting at
the test site."
The Vietnam Veterans of America is suing Pentagon officials on behalf of the
sailors, demanding the release of all of the test documents so the National
Academies of Science can fully analyze the potential health effects.
Douglas Rosinski, an attorney working with the veterans group on behalf of the
soldiers, said the effects of the chemicals on the sailors has not been studied.
The levels of exposure that the documents might detail is a crucial piece of the
puzzle, he said.
Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., was frustrated by the revelation that the Pentagon
is still unwilling to share information about the tests with the exposed
"It doesn't sit with me at all," said Thompson, one of several
lawmakers who pressured the Pentagon into admitting the existence of Project 112
after 30 years of denials.
"I was under the impression that these guys had unearthed everything that
was out there that was available and they'd done the work they were charged with
doing. If what (Spendlove) says is true, they haven't done the work."
The United States scrapped its biological weapons program in the late 1960s and
agreed in a 1997 treaty to destroy all its chemical weapons. But according to an
October 2003 report by the General Accounting Office, 1990, the U.S. has
destroyed only 26 percent of its 31,500-ton stockpile of chemical agents.
As this is an Open Forum,I thought I would post this as well,due to the fact we
still have members of the ADF in places around the world.
US soldier suicide rate up in Iraq
By Matt Kelley in Washington
US soldiers in Iraq are killing themselves at a high rate despite the work of
special teams sent to help troops deal with combat stress, the US Defence
Department's top doctor said.
Meanwhile, about 2500 soldiers who had returned from the war on terrorism were
having to wait for medical care at bases in the United States, Dr William
Winkenwerder, assistant secretary of defence for health affairs, said.
The problem of troops on "medical extension" was likely to get worse
as the Pentagon rotatedhundreds of thousands of troops into and out of Iraq this
spring, he said.
Both situations illustrate the stresses placed on the troops and the military's
health system by the war in Iraq.
Suicide has become such a pressing issue that the Army sent an assessment team
to Iraq late last year to see if anything more could be done to prevent troops
from killing themselves.
The Army also began offering more counselling to returning troops after several
soldiers at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, killed their wives and themselves after
returning home from Afghanistan.
Winkenwerder said the military had documented 21 suicides during 2003 among
troops involved in the Iraq war. Eighteen of those were Army soldiers, he said.
That is a suicide rate for soldiers in Iraq of about 13.5 per 100,000,
Winkenwerder said. In 2002, the Army reported an overall suicide rate of 10.9
The overall suicide rate nationwide during 2001 was 10.7 per 100,000, according
to the federal Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.
By contrast, two US military personnel killed themselves during the 1991 Gulf
War, although that conflict only lasted about a month. The Army recorded 102
suicides during 1991 for a rate of 14.4 per 100,000. The Army's highest suicide
rate in recent years came in 1993, when the rate was 15.7 per 100,000.
The Marine Corps has the military's highest suicide rate. Last year the Marines'
rate was 12.6 per 100,000. During 1993 - when there was US military action in
Somalia and Haiti - the Marines' rate was 20.9 per 100,000.
The military investigates every death and some of those probes might be
incomplete, meaning the actual suicide rate could be even higher, Winkenwerder
said. He said health officials had not identified any common threads among the
"We don't see any trend there that tells us that there's more we might be
doing," Winkenwerder told a breakfast meeting of Pentagon reporters.
The military has nine combat stress teams in Iraq to help treat troops' mental
health problems, and each division has a psychiatrist, psychologist and social
worker, Winkenwerder said. Of more than 10,000 troops medically evacuated from
Iraq, between 300 and 400 were sent outside the country for treatment of mental
health problems, he said.
The military preferred to treat mental health problems such as depression by
keeping troops in their regular duties while they get counselling and possibly
medication, Winkenwerder said. Less than 1 percent of the troops in Iraq are
treated for mental issues during an average week, he said.
Winkenwerder said he had no specifics on the number of soldiers being treated
for battlefield stress, although the military was focused on treating that
"We believe they are being identified, they are being supported,"
The military also is working to solve the issue of soldiers awaiting
non-emergency medical care. Since November, about 1900 of 4400 waiting for
medical care had been treated, Winkenwerder said.
But the military expected more problems when tens of thousands of troops are
rotated in and out of Iraq this northern spring, Winkenwerder said. Many of
those troops leaving Iraq might have to wait at various bases in the United
States for medical treatment such as physical therapy for injuries, he said.
The Army was working to sign contracts with civilian medical providers and
bringing in more staff from the Navy, Air Force and Department of Veterans
Affairs to help, Winkenwerder said.
Another source of the problem hadbeen a large number of National Guard and
reserve troops activated for duty in Iraq who had to be treated for underlying
health problems, Winkenwerder said. The Army was working to solve that problem
by screening those reservists at their home bases, rather than later.
This report appears on NEWS.com.au.
To change the pace a bit, from the UK
GULF SYNDROME BREAKTHROUGH
Jan 11 2004
By Mike Hamilton
GULF War Syndrome campaigners were last night hailing a major victory in their
fight to have the disease offically recognised.
The Government has has always denied that it exists, but now a senior Army
doctor has reported that a former soldier fell ill after being given multiple
inoculations before the 1991 Iraq war. And a coroner has ruled that an Army
Major given a similar cocktail of jabs died because of his service in The Gulf.
The moves are seen as breakthrough recognition that Gulf War Syndrome exists -
and could lead to new compensation claims against the The Ministry of Defence.
Campaigners claim GWS has hit 9,000 veterans from the first Gulf War. And The
Sunday Mirror has highlighted cases from last year's conflict.
Shaun Rusling, chairman of the National Gulf Veterans And Families Association,
said: "These two cases are dynamite and proof Gulf War Syndrome exists.
"They are clear recognition that multiple vaccinations troops were given
have led to serious ill health and death. The government should now stop
covering this up."
The Army doctor produced a report on former Royal Engineer Alex Izzet, 33, who
suffered 13 years of osteoporosis, arthritis, chronic fatigue and mood swings
after received multiple vaccinations when his unit was put on standby for The
Gulf in 1991.
In the second blow to the MOD, Cheshire Coroner Nicholas Rheinberg ruled the
2001 death of former Army Major Ian Hill was linked to his 1991 Gulf War
THE NGVFA's 24-hour helpline number is 01482 833812.