ANZAC Message – CO 8/9 RAR (MTF4)

Dear Association members,

I thought Id take a moment to thank you all for your ongoing support to 8/9 RAR, MTF 4 and  our families while we are away, particularly over ANZAC Day. I hope that you all had a terrific day and managed to catch up with friends and family.

 

Where we could we ceased operations for a few hours to commemorate the Day across all of our patrol bases. The Dawn Services were excellent and the RSM WO1 D’Arcy, coordinated the outstanding Service for the hundreds of Australians working in Tarin Kot, including the VIPs’ one of which was the Governor General of Australia. She provided the most memorable and inspiring speech as the sun slowly rose over the assembled soldiers, following which she laid a wreath hand inscribed with all the names of the soldiers we have lost during this war. It was an emotional moment and highlighted the great sacrifice we have made in the name of bringing security to a country far away. Some of our soldiers also participated in a very small ceremony in the dasht during an isolated multi day patrol with the Afghan National Army (ANA). Theirs was probably the most memorable as they were without doubt the most exposed and isolated Australian soldiers serving anywhere in the world. The threat to these soldiers was very real, however they established security, stopped in the dark and remembered.

 

Later in the Day we took the opportunity to play a bit of sport however, unfortunately the selected Australian Army Cricket Team was defeated by the ANA in a highly competitive and contested cricket match. In another patrol base those soldiers not on duty took the opportunity to have a BBQ next to their newly filled inbuilt emergency water supply. Strangely this facility looks similar to a large swimming pool and coincidently was build adjacent to an array of lounges and a volley ball court. It would appear our MTF soldiers are often required to change into swimmers and inspect the water supply for extended periods! That said on this particular day the soldiers, whilst inspecting the water supply, eating BBQ and enjoying one of their two cans of beer were rudely disturbed by the Insurgents who decided to attack an adjacent police check point. Unfortunately the men in their haste to respond evidently spilt all their allocated beer and naturally immediately sought me out for another two cans. Nice try but fail!!

 

Our soldiers are doing magnificently and you can all be very proud of their achievements. They have fully embraced their mission and role as mentors. Their achievements in regards to developing the confidence, skills and capabilities of the ANA have been outstanding. Others now look at the MTF 4 model as that which they strive to achieve. Our relationships with the ANA are built on trust and have been proven in combat against an exceptionally tenacious and dangerous enemy. We never underestimate the enemy although our results are proving we are better than them. We have been tested repeatedly since we arrived and each time our soldiers have walked away and can be proud of their achievements. I am immensely proud of them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time is getting short for us now and the days longer and hotter, we are tired but not exhausted. We are still winning and mission achievement looks a certainty for us. That said, it’s not over and the hardest part of our mission is yet to come. The challenge for us is to maintain the same rate of effort, high standards, achievements and morale so that we come home together and satisfied we did our small part in a big war. I would also like to take the opportunity to sincerely thank all the people at home who have sent us their wishes and care packages. We really have been spoilt and your thoughts mean the world to us. It’s truly appreciated and I can’t thank you enough. We look forward to seeing you when this one is over.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Kahlil Fegan

Lieutenant Colonel

Commanding Officer

Comments

  1. Greg Hurcum says

    Thankyou Kahlil for taking the time to update us. ANZAC Day was great here in Brisbane but our thoughts were and continue to be with you all and we pray for your safe return. Enjoy the experience, the comarderie and the knowledge you are all doing great work which is valued by us at home. Rest assured that Polly and the Bn rear are doing you all proud. I remain a little envious and wishing I was 20 years younger. Best wishes. Greg

  2. it makes me pround to read these comments please come home safe OLD10irc bloke thank you all again for your good job

  3. Ted Chitham says

    Thanks Kahlil for keeping us at home informed of the unit’s activities. For us elder warriors it recharges our batteries and swells our pride in what you younger warriors are doing to achieve your mission. We are immensely proud of you and your men.
    Duty First.
    Ted Chitham

  4. Klaus 'Tank' Scheuermann says

    Great update Kahlil. I am delighted the battalion is performing so well. I have just come back from commemorating this ANZAC Day with the sub unit I first went to Vietnam down in Portland Victoria. Country Australia certainly hasn’t forgotten ANZAC Day or what you guys are doing over there. I pray that the battalion continues to fare well for the remainder of the tour. We look forward to greeting you all on your return. The family days are going very well and Greg Decker is doing a sterling job in co ordinating things between the associations. Until your return farewell and safe soldering.

    Tank

  5. Dave McDonald says

    Kahlil, a fine report – thank you. Just quickly wanted to tell you that Polly is holding up well and is still grumpy. He has supported us on many occasions and we have enjoyed the family Happy Hours. I am extremely proud of 8/9! All of yours boys are doing a marvelous job.

    Cheers

    Dave

  6. Christopher (MOOSE) NELSON says

    Well done skipper. Whish I was 35 years younger I would love to be back in B Coy on the ground.

    Cheers Chris.

  7. Chris Laurenson says

    Thankyou for the update Sir and I am proud to say that in your absence we secured and held the ‘RAMS RETREAT’ for the last time, I even played ‘Black Bear’ on the Bagpipes but the ‘HOY’ was not as loud as at your Dining In night at Vic. Barracks. Stay safe, you are all in our thoughts, Your Old Pipe Major,Chris.

  8. Ken Marsh says

    I saw your message that was shared via face book by ADSO. As someone who did 20 years in the RAAF more years ago that I would care to remember, I just wanted to thank you for sharing your message to the troops. They are doing a great job and should know that every Australian is behind them and thinking of them.

    Ken Marsh