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Australian Army

The Army's insistence on retaining its division level formations hindered changes to meet new strategic guidance. Having moved away from the division to the brigade level, the Army remained reluctant, while the attempt by Lieutenant General Sanderson to move further under Army 21 to combined arms units, was abandoned with apparent alacrity soon after Sanderson retired.

  • a special forces capability comprising a Special Air Service regiment, a Regular Army commando battalion; an Army Reserve commando regiment and an Incident Response Regiment
  • a medium combined arms operations capability based on 1st Brigade, consisting of a tank regiment, a cavalry regiment, one mechanised infantry battalion, a medium artillery regiment; a combat engineer regiment, a signals regiment and a combat service support battalion
  • a light combined arms operations capability based on 3rd Brigade, consisting of an infantry mobility vehicle squadron, three light infantry battalions, a field artillery regiment, a combat engineer regiment, a signals regiment and a combat service support battalion
  • a motorised combined arms capability, based on 7th Brigade, consisting of a cavalry regiment, a motorised infantry battalion, a field artillery regiment, a combat engineer regiment, a signals squadron and a combat service support battalion
  • a regional surveillance capability based on three regional force surveillance units
  • an aviation capability based on 16th Brigade consisting of two aviation regiments and two aviation squadrons operating both rotary-wing and fixed-wing aircraft including Black Hawk, Kiowa, Iroquois and Chinook helicopters, and leased King Air fixed-wing aircraft
  • a ground-based air defence capability which maintains a ground-based air defence system consisting of RBS-70 shoulder-launched missile systems
  • a combat support force, consisting of a surveillance and target acquisition regiment, an engineer support regiment headquarters, two Regular Army engineer construction squadrons, a construction engineer works section, a topographical survey squadron, a signals regiment, an electronic warfare regiment, an intelligence battalion, a military police battalion, a ground liaison group and a combat training centre
  • a logistic support capability based on the 17th Brigade consisting of a signals regiment, three force support battalions, a personnel support battalion, three health support battalions and a psychology unit
  • a protective operations capability drawn from the Army Reserve, with six brigades each comprising two or three infantry battalions; a light cavalry unit and combat support and logistic support units.

The Army has announced an initiative called Adaptive Army. This will see the Australian Army restructure its higher command and control arrangements. The aims of this restructuring are for Army to better array its force elements to deal with the ADF's evolved command and control structures, more efficiently conduct force generation and preparation and, simultaneously, to master the different learning loops that enhance its adaptive capacity.

Digger is a New Zealand and Australian military slang term for soldiers from New Zealand and Australia. It originated during World War I. There are numerous theories about the origin of the term. Before the war, the term "digger" had been widely used in Australasia to mean a miner, or a Kauri gum-digger in New Zealand. W.H.Downing, in Digger Dialects (1919), a glossary of words and phrases used by Australian personnel during the war, says that Digger was first used to mean a New Zealand or Australian soldier in 1916. It appears to have become popular among New Zealand troops, before being adopted by Australians. While New Zealanders would call each other "Digger", all other nationalities, including Australians, tended to call them "Kiwis". The equivalent slang for a British soldier was "Tommy" from Tommy Atkins. However, while the Anzacs would happily refer to themselves as "Diggers", British soldiers generally resented being called "Tommy". Throughout Australia when one refers to "digger", one is referring to the Australian Army.

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Page last modified: 19-11-2020 17:09:18 ZULU