THE VUNG FERRY

HMAS Sydney (III) in her configuration as a Fast Troop Transport undertook numerous voyages to Vietnam between 1965-1972. This short video records the voyage undertaken between 15 November 1969 – 12 December 1969, during which she carried members of 8 Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (RAR) to Vung Tau before returning to Sydney with members of 9 Battalion, RAR.

The Commissioners have delivered the Interim Report to the Governor-General

At 9:00 am today the Commissioners, Nick Kaldas APM (Chair), The Hon James Douglas QC and Dr Peggy Brown AO presented the Interim Report of the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide to the Governor-General, His Excellency, General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd).

Delivering our interim report on 11 August, 2022 is required by the Letters Patent that established the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide. The Commissioners will continue their inquiries until June 2024, when they will share the Royal Commission’s final report and recommendations.

The interim report includes some urgent recommendations as well as preliminary observations, which will now be considered by the Government.

What happens next?

We anticipate the Government will make the report available publicly as soon as possible after it is delivered to the Governor-General.

Once the interim report has been made public, the Royal Commission will publish it in hard copy and digital editions. We will share links to the digital version of the Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide Interim Report through our newsletter to subscribers.

‘Hoaxed’: State of the Environment report relies on ‘New Age Aboriginal spirituality

You’ve been hoaxed. You are the victim of a monumental fraud by Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek groovers… ??

Plibersek last week released the five-yearly State of the Environment Report, which she claimed was the work of “experts” who’d found our “environment is in a poor state and getting worse”.

The report was “confronting”, “depressing” and “shocking”, groaned Plibersek, who immediately promised to lock up 30 per cent of Australia in parks and reserves – half as much again as is protected already.

Yes, this report is shocking, all right. But not in the way Plibersek meant. It’s shocking evidence of our intellectual decline, and of the Albanese government passing off a new age Aboriginal spirituality as the last word in science.

Not that the media noticed – or dared point out. The Guardian Australia, for instance, insisted this “shocking report” was “completed by scientists”. The ABC agreed it was “written by 30 independent scientists”.

But it wasn’t. Many of the authors are actually Aboriginal activists, writers and even a “curator”. One is a student.

And the authors who are indeed scientists don’t appear for the most part independent. Many are warmists of long standing, almost all working for government agencies.

A lot of this report is not science at all.

For instance, the report says some of its research comes from “Indigenous knowledge systems” and “yarning circles” with Aborigines, and every chapter starts with a quotation in an Aboriginal language of what you’d take to be some supposed Aboriginal wisdom.

In fact, each quotation sounds more like the babbling of a Byron Bay eco-mystic.

The chapter on climate, for instance, starts: “Listen to country fighting for the day after tomorrow, people arise to heal country to live.”

But check some of the named “scientists” and “experts” behind Plibersek’s report. The three lead authors include two scientists, but also Terri Janke, described as “a Meriam/Wuthathi woman and an international authority on Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property”.

Straight away we’re warned: this report is not just science.

Or take the chapter on our supposedly dangerous new climate. Only one of its three authors is a qualified scientist.

The other two are Damian Moran-Bulled, described in the report as “a proud Yorta Yorta man” who “has worked within the cultural heritage and natural resource management field”, and Sonia Cooper, “a Yorta Yorta woman” with “a strong interest in culture, the environment, science, policy, law, contracts and geopolitics”.

Cooper, we’re told, is “currently completing her Bachelor of Science degree”.

So a student is now co-author of an allegedly scientific report to government which the Environment Minister cites to lock up a third of our continent?

In every chapter of the report, it seems, it’s the same story, with many authors apparently chosen for their race above any scientific qualifications.

For instance, one of the two authors of the critical chapter on extreme events is Oliver Costello, who identifies as a “Bundjalung man” who “believes strongly in the role of Aboriginal culture as a keystone to maintaining livelihoods, supporting identity, connection to Country and enabling healthy and regenerative communities to care for Country”.

Costello, who campaigns for more “cultural burning”, has no scientific qualifications.

The report says, “he holds a Bachelor of Arts in Adult Education and Community Management”.

A co-author of two of the chapters is Zena Cumpston, described as a “Barkandji woman” who “works as a writer, curator, consultant and researcher and is passionate about truth-telling and undertaking projects that directly benefit her community and Country”.

Yet another is a senior official of the green activist group WWF.

The Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water seems to have selected exactly the “experts” likely to produce a desired conclusion – that our environment is terrible, global warming is catastrophic and “mining and agriculture have been identified by Indigenous people as causing degradation to Country”.

Yet the most frightening about this is Plibersek, our Environment Minister, took it seriously.

She’s not just decided to keep farmers and miners out of much more of our land, but last week froze work on a $4.5bn project to make fertiliser that our farmers desperately need after a few Aboriginal activists claimed its emissions somehow hurt nearby cave paintings.

Who knows if those activists have any science behind them, but does it matter?

Plibersek has just proved she cannot tell the difference between science and religion, anyway, and all of us must now pay!

Andrew Bolt – The Daily Telegraph

 

‘HI MUM’ TEXT MESSAGE SCAM RAKES IN $2M AND COUNTING

The NSW Police State Crime Command’s Cybercrime Squad has warned phone users to remain vigilant following a rise in victims of the scam dubbed “Hi Mum”.

The scam involves the offender sending a text message from an unknown mobile phone number to a person on a messaging application claiming to be their son or daughter. The message then states they’ve lost their phone, telling the victim they’re sending from their new number and to delete the old number.

According to the Cybercrime Squad, offenders may send victims messages along the lines of “Hey Mum it’s me. I got a new phone number, you can delete the old one. I got a new phone. I’m still transferring everything.”

After the victim engages in conversation, the offender then asks to borrow money or have a payment made on their behalf, generally accompanied by a fabricated excuse as to why they need the cash, which is usually due to the fictitious unavailability of online banking on the “new device”. To bolster the message scam’s validity, the fake texts generally include a bogus offer to pay the money back.

The Cybercrime Squad has also found that another example of the scam messages in circulation refers to “avoiding online fraud”, a technique scammers have employed aimed at increasing the text’s credibility.

“The banking app has put a 48-hour security on the app due to fraud. All nice but I have to pay two payments,” one of the scam messages stated.

The offender will usually claim it is a matter of urgency before providing details for the payment.

Victims are predominantly aged 55 years and older, with people in NSW and Victoria accounting for more than 50 per cent of “Hi Mum” scam victims, followed by Western Australia and Queensland.

According to Matthew Craft, Cybercrime Squad Commander and Detective Superintendent, the scam dates back to October 2021, however, there has been a significant increase in reports since May 2022.

“We encourage people to look out for suspicious behaviours demonstrated by these scammers; including their failure to personalise any communication and excuses as to why they can’t speak on the phone.

“If you receive a suspicious message on your mobile, particularly through social media or encrypted messaging, reach out to your relative by an alternative method of communication or call to confirm it is in fact them.

“Many parents are falling victim because they’re simply nice people who are concerned for their child’s welfare,” Detective Superintendent Craft said.

Fraudulently obtained funds are usually quickly moved from bank accounts into cryptocurrency, Cybercrime Squad further explained, which prevents the likelihood of victims getting their money back.

If you have lost money to a scam, contact the bank or a financial institution as soon as possible and report the matter to the police.

Visit the Scamwatch website for more advice on how to avoid scams and what to do if you or someone you know is a victim of a scam.

Anyone with information in relation to cyber crimes and scams is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

 

PLANNING AHEAD

Planning Ahead is a publication designed to help veterans and their families prepare for bereavement. You have two options you can save the PDF document or you can request a booklet from the DVA or in most cases your local RSL Sub-Branch.

CLICK LINK to open

Planning Ahead – A GUIDE TO PUTTING YOUR AFFAIRS IN ORDER – PREPARING FOR AND COPING WITH BEREAVEMENT (dva.gov.au)

 

The following is a personal particulars form that we all should complete for our family.

CLICK LINK to open

Personal Particulars Form – Your Private Record (dva.gov.au)

Provisional Access to Medical Treatment extended for two more years

The Australian Government has today committed $33 million to extend access to free medical treatment for veterans.

The free Provisional Access to Medical Treatment program provides access to medical treatment for 20 of the most commonly claimed conditions to veterans who have lodged a claim with DVA.

“We know veterans waiting for claims to be processed need support ­– this is a challenging time and dealing with a medical condition can make it even more stressful,” Minister Keogh said.

“This funding will ensure veterans can continue to access medical treatment for their condition while they wait for their claims to be processed. Ensuring veterans have access to their treatment earlier can make a big difference to their recovery.

“The Government is committed to a better future for veterans and this program will provide them with access to medical treatment when they need it,” Minister Keogh said.

To learn more about the Provisional Access to Medical Treatment program, visit the DVA website.

On the Gunline

A short documentary on the guided missile destroyer HMAS Perth (II) filmed during her second deployment to Vietnam between September 1968 and April 1969.

The Story of a Forward Scout: Richard Bligh

A Murri man from the South Burnett area in Queensland, Richard was a 21-year-old ring-barker working in New South Wales when he asked his boss to mail off his papers to join the army. Richard Bligh, a quietly spoken Aboriginal man, and Vietnam veteran shares his poignant story with us here on film. Watch a part of Richard’s story here.

 

Life of a Door Gunner

A conversation with a veteran – Victor Smith of the This was an interview with Victor ‘Vic’ Smith, a Vietnam veteran who served with the RAAF No. 9 Squadron as a Huey door gunner.

Despite being a dangerous job, vets who served as door gunners have been overlooked in many interviews, and we felt it was necessary for all of those who served in Vietnam to have their stories told.

Other airfield defence guards like Vic volunteered to work as door gunners with the RAAFs 9 Squadron, which served in Southeast Asia from 1966 to 1975 (the end of the war) and worked as medevac (dustoff), attack/support, and ‘people sniffer’ (a special program for detecting enemy activity by monitoring air components from the UH-1). The importance of the squadron – such as assisting other forces, working with the SAS (and saving them from dangerous situations), and taking casualties and aircraft losses – is not to be understated. We are taking it upon ourselves to tell these veteran’s stories – they deserve to be heard.