Australians serving overseas are adopting radical but effective disguises to protect their identities while on operations, especially when bastard photographers are lurking about.
Bastard photographer in this case was Corporal Ben Dempster
In some cases, the disguises are actually an improvement – though we’re not sure if their Regimental Sergeant Majors would approve.
Despite best efforts, however, we’re not sure the disguises actually work. Office concuss at CONTACT this morning is that two of these are positively identified as, left to right, triple Walkley-Award winner Gary Ramage and football star Matthew Johns.
All frivolity aside, we wish all our service men and women who were deployed over Christmas a safe and successful mission.
Operation Okra is the Australian Defence Force’s contribution to the international effort to combat Daesh (also known as ISIL and ISIS) in Iraq and Syria.
About 780 ADF personnel have deployed to the Middle East in support of Operation Okra.
These personnel make up the Air Task Group (ATG), the Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) and Task Group Taji (TG Taji).
Approximately 400 personnel have been assigned to the ATG, approximately 80 personnel are assigned to the SOTG and approximately 300 personnel are assigned to TG Taji.
Operation Highroad is the ADF’s commitment to Afghanistan and is fulfilled by personnel serving with the ADF’s Task Group Afghanistan.
Around 250 ADF members from the Royal Australian Navy, the Australian Army, the Royal Australian Air Force and Defence civilians are deployed in Afghanistan as part of Operation Highroad, which is a training mission.
Task Group Afghanistan’s Headquarters is at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport and comprises a command element of about 45 ADF personnel, which coordinates administration, communications and logistics support for all ADF members deployed to Afghanistan.
Operation Manitou is Australian’s contribution to international maritime operations in the Middle East Region, with an Australian warship on permanent rotation through the theatre, to counter terrorism, deter piracy, encourage regional cooperation and promote a safer maritime environment.
Currently HMAS Melbourne is deployed on Operation Manitou, soon to be relieved by HMAS Darwin.
This will be HMAS Darwin’s seventh deployment to the Middle East and the 62nd rotation of Royal Australian Navy fleet unit to the region since 1990.
Operation Accordion is a mission to support the sustainment of Australian Defence Force operations in the Middle East Region.
Around 400 ADF personnel provide support to Australian operations throughout the region from Australia’s main logistics base in the MER.