A-10 Warthog FINALLY After Upgrade

The A-10 Warthog can fly with one engine, one elevator, half of its tail, and half of a wing all missing. The aircraft simply cannot be shot down and that’s one reason it has stayed in service for almost half a century. It’s also why, after Russia invaded Ukraine, the A-10 Warthog was the one aircraft called by Ukraine’s Defense Minister to save the country. However, despite already being lethal to taste, the A-10 is constantly upgraded with new capabilities to become even more decisive in high-end conflicts, especially with China’s military might constantly on the rise. So in this video, we’ll be discussing everything there is to know about the lethal masterpiece that is the A-10 Warthog – a true innovation and symbol of American superior air power.


Open day thrill leads to solid career.

Photo: Corporal Paul Quilliam next to an old S70 Black Hawk at the Rotary-Wing Aircraft Maintenance School in Oakey. Story by Warrant Officer Class 2 Max Bree.

Corporal Paul Quilliam first saw Army helicopters at a Lavarack Barracks open day in the early 1990s.

He recently realised he first sat in the aircraft that would dominate his career after uncovering a photo from that day.

“I never realised it was a Black Hawk until I found the old photo,” he said.

Corporal Quilliam hoped to become a Black Hawk avionics technician, but during training was told there were no more positions – until he was panelled for a Black Hawk-type course with two weeks to go.

Corporal Quilliam later worked on the S-70 type for six years until they were retired.

“You’d see them come in fast, flare up, then quickly land to extract troops,” he said.

“It was really agile; it got the job done and got out of there quickly.”

Despite the aircraft being more than 30 years old, Corporal Quilliam said they were reliable and easy to work on.

“It was also able to deploy very rapidly at short notice; we could be ready to go quickly,” he said.

“If there was a quick, turnaround task, it was achievable to have the aircraft rapidly folded and ready for a C-17 load.”

The modern UH-60M, colloquially known as ‘Mike’ models, will include modern avionics for tradies like Corporal Quilliam to look after.

But they won’t use the old Black Hawks’ manual test equipment, thanks to on-board diagnostic systems and plug-in fault-finding gear.

“Mikes have a full-glass cockpit with multi-function displays, and the avionics package will be fully digital; as opposed to the S70’s old-school mechanical instruments,” Corporal Quilliam said.

“For a lot of stuff, we’ll be able to plug in and have it self-diagnose with test equipment. A lot of the time, it will be able to tell you what the problem is and where to go.

“That will give you quicker outcomes for repair and maintenance.”

Corporal Quilliam is an instructor at the Rotary Wing Aircraft Maintenance School and hopes to become a Black Hawk instructor or post back to an operational unit working on Mike models.

“If you told my younger self he’d be working on Black Hawks one day, he wouldn’t have believed you, but he’d be pretty impressed if he knew,” Corporal Quilliam said.


Career support is available for children of veterans

Is your parent a veteran or currently serving in the Australian Defence Force?

If so, you’re eligible for FREE career support via the RSL Veterans’ Employment Program. That means FREE help with: – Writing your CV and cover letters – Finding and applying for training courses – Deciding what career will suit you – Meeting local employers with job vacancies – Interview tips and tricks

Our career coaches can help you take the next step, no matter where you’re at in your work journey. Learn more: www.rslaustralia.org/employment


Pensions and allowances to rise from 20 March

From 20 March 2023, some veterans and their families will receive an increase to their pension payments in line with increases in the cost of living. You don’t have to do anything to receive the increase, it will be automatically included in your next payment.

As pension rates are calculated on a daily basis, the pension paid on payday 23 March 2023 will be paid partly at the old rate and partly at the new rate. The first full payment at the new rates of pension will be payday 6 April 2023.

The maximum rate of single service pension will rise by $37.50 to $1,064.00 per fortnight and the maximum rate for couples will increase by $28.20 to $802.00 per fortnight (each).

The Special Rate of Disability Compensation Payment (T&PI payment) will increase by $59.04 to $1,676.20 per fortnight. The Extreme Disablement Adjustment (EDA) rate will increase by $31.90 to $904.60 per fortnight and the 100 per cent General Rate of Disability Compensation Payment will increase by $20.50 to $581.90 per fortnight.

The pension paid to war widow(er)s will increase by $38.20 to $1,082.50 per fortnight (including the energy supplement), while the ceiling rate of the income support supplement will rise  to $321.10 per fortnight.

Payments will also increase certain benefits under the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 (MRCA). The weekly MRCA wholly dependent partner payment will increase by $19.10 to $541.25. This is paid fortnightly ($1,082.50).

The indexation factor used to index pensions each March and September can be based on either the Consumer Price Index (CPI), the Pensioner and Beneficiary Living Cost Index (PBLCI) or Male Total Average Weekly Earnings (MTAWE). For 20 March 2023, the indexation was driven by CPI.

For more information on the new pension rates, call 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372). Current and historical pension rates are available on the CLIK website (clik.dva.gov.au).

New pension rates from 20 March 2023

SERVICE PENSION Old rate (fortnightly) New rate




Single person  $1,026.50  $1,064.00  $37.50
Couples (each)  $773.80  $802.00  $28.20
Single person – transitional  $856.40  $887.60  $31.20
Couples (each) – transitional  $690.90  $716.10  $25.20
War widow(er)’s pension  $1,044.30  $1,082.50  $38.20
Income support supplement  $309.60  $321.10  $11.50
T&PI (Special rate)  $1,617.16  $1,676.20  $59.04
Intermediate rate  $1,072.10  $1,111.30  $39.20
EDA  $872.70  $904.60  $31.90
100 per cent  $561.40  $581.90  $20.50
10 per cent  $63.07  $65.12  $2.05
Single Person $1,112.30 $1,153.50 $41.20
Couples (each) $867.20 $899.30 $32.10
Wholly dependent partner payment $1,044.30 $1,082.50 $38.20
Special Rate Disability pension (SRDP) $1,617.16 $1,676.20 $59.04


These are the maximum rates of payment and include any Energy Supplement payable.

The first full payment at the new rates will be the payday 6 April 2023.

*Note that the MRCA payments in the bottom two rows are the fortnightly amounts, not the weekly amounts.

Gunfight Rules

ED: This tongue in cheek one comes from a US veteran.

“Peace is that brief glorious moment in history when everybody stands around reloading.” In a gunfight, the most important rule is … HAVE A GUN! The following are shooting tips from various Concealed Carry Instructors. If you own a gun, you will appreciate these rules… If not, you should get one, learn how to use it, and learn the rules.


A.) Guns have only two enemies: Rust and Politicians. Rust can be prevented, Politicians cannot.

B.) It’s always better to be judged by 12 than carried out by 6.

C.) Cops carry guns to protect themselves, not you

D.) Never let someone or something that threatens you get within 7 yards.

E.) Never say “I’ve got a gun.” If you need to use deadly force, the first sound they should hear is the safety clicking off, or the hammer cocking.

F.) The average response time of a 911 call is 23 minutes …when only seconds count; the response time of a .357 is 1,400 feet per second.

G.) The most important rule in a gunfight is: Always Win – there is no such thing as a fair fight. Always Win – cheat if necessary. Always Win – 2nd place doesn’t count.

H.) Make your attacker advance through a wall of bullets … you may get killed with your own gun, but they’ll have to beat you to death with it because it will be empty.

I.) If you’re in a gun fight:

(a) If you’re not shooting, you should be reloading.

(b) If you’re not reloading, you should be moving.

(c) If you’re not moving, you’re dead.

J.) In a life and death situation, do something … it may be wrong, but do something!

K.) If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. Nonsense! If you have a gun, what do you have to be paranoid about?

L.) Never fire a warning shot, that is just one wasted bullet, which could be needed within moments.

M.) You can say “stop” or any other word, but a large bore muzzle pointed at someone’s head is pretty much a universal language; and, you won’t have to press 1 for Spanish/Mexican, or 2 for Chinese, or 3 for Arabic.

N.) Never leave a wounded enemy behind. If you have to shoot, shoot to kill. In court, yours will be the only testimony.

O.) You cannot save the planet, but you may be able to save yourself and your family.

If you believe in the 2nd Amendment, forward this to others you know who also believe.


Veterans unite to call for improved access to mental health support.

By Lexie Jenuniewic

Three ex-service organisations from regional Victoria have united in a push to bring mental health support for veterans in line with other support services.

Australian Defence Force veterans Andrew Hamilton, Frank Nuccio, and Kevin Scott have committed to assisting other veterans and families through organisations in the Ballarat region.

Mr Hamilton is the secretary of Ballarat Veterans Assistance Centre, Mr Nuccio is the senior vice president of Ballarat RSL, and Mr Scott is the secretary of Sebastopol RSL.

All three men have expressed concern over the Department of Veterans’ Affairs’ Non-Liability Health Care provision for veterans.

The scheme is open to current and former defence force members to provide fully-funded treatment of all mental health conditions.

If a veteran’s application is approved, eligible treatment can begin.

Mr Nuccio said “on the surface” the scheme seemed “really great”, but a key shortfall was impacting veterans accessing the service.

He said psychiatrists could not charge a gap for veterans’ affairs patients, leaving them out of pocket.

“The fee that they’ll get from that visit is substantially less than if they saw a private patient … it makes it even harder for the veteran to get mental health help,” Mr Nuccio said.

“The general consensus is that you’re less likely to get in [to see a psychiatrist] if you’re a DVA patient.”

In a statement, a Department of Veterans’ Affairs spokesperson said the department paid a rate higher than the equivalent Medicare Benefits Schedule fee.

“In return for this higher rate, providers are not permitted to charge DVA cardholders a gap fee,” the spokesperson said.

Mr Nuccio said the department could lift its rebate to the same level as the Transport Accident Commission and WorkCover.

Mr Hamilton said a report from a psychiatrist was needed to claim the cost from the department.

He said that would require several sessions.

“The administration burden on psychiatrists to provide the paperwork for someone to be recognised for their mental health, is huge,” he said.

The department spokesperson said there were 1,470 psychiatrists who provided about 110,000 services to more than 20,000 Veteran Card holders last financial year.

“However, DVA acknowledges there are broader workforce shortages across the mental health sector and that this can present particular challenges for veterans living in rural and remote areas,” the spokesperson said.

Delay consequences

Mr Hamilton said the challenge of accessing already-strained psychiatrists was leading to veterans “putting aside” mental health issues that needed to be addressed.

“Trying to get a veteran in the door first place is hard,” he said.

“Then when you start closing those doors … financial cost, administrative wait by DVA … it starts to mean they’ll close the door.”

He said the wait to receive treatment, in some cases, could be deadly.

“I know a recent case of a veteran who died by suicide trying to get his mental health recognised,” he said.

Mr Scott, who was a cadet officer for 14 years, said many Australia Defence Force cadets weren’t aware they could access help through the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

“One of my major concerns is the rate of cadets, or ex-cadets, suiciding,” Mr Scott said.

According to the latest Defence and veteran suicide monitoring report, 1,600 ADF members and veterans with service after 1985 died by suicide between 1997 and 2020.

‘Think-tank’ proposed

All three organisations have called for the Department of Veterans’ Affairs to hold a “think-tank” with mental health experts who could provide direction and help simplify what they described as a “very complicated” system.

“There’s been a verbal ‘we’re trying’ [from the government], but the reality isn’t necessarily there,” Mr Hamilton said.

“From Vietnam times to today, we’ve gone a long way.

“But there’s still a long way to go.”

The Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide released its interim report in August last year.

Eliminating a backlog of 41,799 claims to the department by March 2024 was among the 13 recommendations made.

Graeme Kirk’s Vietnam Album

ED: Thank you Stan. I requested info from you blokes and sure you’ll find some interest in all these photos.   Ray

Hi everyone.

I have just finished Graeme Kirk’s Vietnam slides and created an Album in his name on my Flickr Vietnam site. The link is below:

KIRK, Graeme Henry, Australian Military Police Vietnam 1969-70 | Flickr

For Noble Park Veterans this album has also been added to my Noble Park Veterans collection see this link: Collection: NOBLE PARK RSL Victoria Vietnam Veterans Albums (flickr.com)

Would love some feedback on Graeme’s photos as I have put a lot of work into them and I am very happy with the results!


Stan Middleton OAM

[email protected]

0424 326 399

PS: the link to all my albums on my Vietnam Flickr site is as follows: Stan Middleton(collated) Vietnam War (Australians)’s collections on Flickr


First Aussie soldier arrested for war crimes.

By Brian Hartigan – Contact

A former SAS trooper has been arrested by Australian Federal Police near Goulburn, NSW, in relation to alleged war crimes committed in Afghanistan.

A joint investigation between the Office of the Special Investigator (OSI) and the AFP has today resulted in the arrest of a New South Wales man.

It is expected he will be charged with one count of War Crime—Murder under subsection 268.70(1) Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).

Investigators arrested the man, 41, in regional NSW this morning and he is expected to appear in a NSW Local Court later today, Monday 20 March 2023.

It will be alleged he murdered an Afghan man while deployed to Afghanistan with the Australian Defence Force.

The maximum penalty for a War Crime—Murder offence is life imprisonment.

OSI and AFP are working together to investigate allegations of criminal offences under Australian law related to breaches of the Laws of Armed Conflict by Australian Defence Force personnel in Afghanistan between 2005 and 2016.

A joint statement from OSI and AFP said that as the matter will be before the court and the investigation is ongoing, no further comment will be made.

However, while the ABC has already identified a soldier by name and photograph as being the man arrested, CONTACT will refrain from naming him until the details are officially confirmed.

That said, the ABC says he is the soldier shown in an ABC 4 Corners episode allegedly shooting an unarmed man in a wheat field.

If it is the man identified by the ABC, they say he was awarded a Commendation for Gallantry for his service in Afghanistan.

The OSI was established in 2021 as one element of the Australian government’s response to the Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force’s Afghanistan Inquiry report – AKA, the Brereton report.

China Inaugurating a New World Order?

by Judith Bergman

On March 10, Chinese President and Communist Party General-Secretary Xi Jinping brokered a surprise agreement between Saudi Arabia and Iran to re-establish diplomatic relations between the two countries, effectively knocking the US off the Middle Eastern chessboard and showing himself as a power-broker on the world stage.

Xi is, in fact, on his way to Russia, possibly as soon as next week, with a 12-point peace plan — ostensibly to see if he can pull off the same wizardry with Ukraine, but more likely to nail down plans to seize Taiwan.

China as the world’s new power-broker anywhere, especially in the Middle East — until Biden squandered America’s alliances there — is conceivably a seismic turning point: possibly the beginning of China fulfilling its dream of replacing the US as the dominant superpower in a new world order.

For the Biden Administration, this is a blow for which it has only itself to thank. ” In addition to ignoring Saudi security concerns about Iran’s escalating nuclear weapons program, Biden also let Iran’s terrorist proxies off the hook. He removed Yemen’s Iranian-sponsored Houthi terrorist group from the list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations in February 2021, and refused to put it back even after the Houthis resumed missile and drone attacks on the United Arab Emirates, as well as more attacks on Saudi Arabia.

Is it any wonder, then, that in the vacuum the US created, the Saudis felt pushed towards China and Iran? What, after all, was their alternative?

It is likely that the Saudis were hoping that the Americans, even at the last minute, would pledge completely to terminate their negotiations with Iran over the nuclear deal, which permits Iran unlimited nuclear weapons.

China and other aggressors also cannot avoid seeing America’s non-stop ineptitude, whether the focus in the US military on teaching critical race theory and “climate change” rather than on how to win or deter wars; billions for “climate change,” which must give China, which is building “six times more coal plants than other countries,” a good laugh, while the US military budget has been in a steady net-decline, outpaced by Biden’s 6% inflation. Someone has not been minding the store.

Will more countries be willing to reject an international order based on democratic values — not to mention the world’s reserve currency — of the US?