Talk:Australian Army

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Royal Prefix[edit]

Question. Why doesn't the Australian Army have the Royal prefix like the Navy and Air Force? -Penta 06:48, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Possibly for the same reason the British Army doesn't have the "Royal" prefix. But I don't know what that reason is. Geoff 06:55, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
My guess would be that the Army did not have a unified command - units originally tended to be under specific lords quasi-independent of the king. We note that a number of individual old units are "Royal" though, those being the "King's Own". The Navy was always more like the personal fleet of the king - no "Duke of Lancaster's Frigate Squadron" :-) or the like, and then RAF copied consciously. Stan 07:56, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)

Question. Why doesn't the Australian Army have the Royal prefix like the Navy and Air Force?

The Answer-

The answer lies in the fact that the Navy and the Air Force are homogeneous bodies whilst the Australian Army is an elemental organization made up of a number of corps, services and departments. Our Defence Force is based on the British system where a person can enlist straight into either the navy or the air force but one cannot join the ‘army’. In the United Kingdom a person is enlisted straight into either a regiment or a corps (eg. the Royal Regiment of Artillery, the Grenadier Guards, or the Royal Corps of Transport)and recruit training is carried out by that formation. No one joins the ‘Army’ as such.

Why is it that Longhair placed this in the category of Royal Australian Army then (see link at the bottom of the main article, I'm having trouble putting it in here)? - Bambul 04:36AM, 22 June 2005 (UTC)
The Army does not have a Royal prefix (I don't know why), although the Royal Australian Regiment and several other units do. The category currently reflects this. --Scott Davis Talk 14:18, 4 September 2005 (UTC)
The army does not have a prefix, because it is not "the army". The Australian army is broken down into a series of corps, such as the Royal Australian Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery, Royal Australian Ordnance Corps etc. That's where all your royalty is!


We really need details of 1916-18 battles, and of campaigns other than Gallipoli and the Western Front, including German New Guinea and the Middle East, if anyone would like to help with this. Cheers Grant65 (Talk) 13:09, Jul 18, 2004 (UTC)

I prefer having the detailed history in the 1st AIF article and a more concise version in this article. Otherwise the WWI section is going to outweigh the neighbouring peacetime periods. Certainly there is no need to duplicate paragraphs. I am happy to work on the WWI content. Geoff/Gsl 00:13, 19 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Thanks Geoff. I think the WW1 section does need trimming down, but I do think we need mentions of battles there, which -- after all -- is what many people are interested in. I think the "war sections" should be bigger than the peacetime ones, considering that the article is about an army. (By the way, I like the pages on Generals Bridges and Bennett.) Grant65 (Talk) 11:36, Jul 19, 2004 (UTC)
Makes sense to me. As I said, I am happy to work on WWI but didn't want to butt in while you were fleshing out the article. I do intend to write a Military history of Australia during World War I which should provide an intermediate level of detail between this article (plus navy & political content) and the specific battle/unit/officer articles. As for the generals, Bridges isn't one of mine but I had a need for an article on Bennett so when I noticed you needed one as well, I got it started. I will do his WWI career but feel free to write the WWII sections (of which I know little). Geoff/Gsl 05:01, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

The page is looking good, well done. Most of the significant battles are now there. I'll be too busy with other things to do much with it in the near future.Grant65 (Talk) 12:23, Jul 20, 2004 (UTC)


Compare Modern equipment and uniform of the British Army. Alphax τεχ 07:17, Mar 19, 2005 (UTC)

Hrm, still nothing on the Army website. Alphax τεχ 03:16, 10 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The section under infantry says that the RAR is one large regiment of six battalions. This is a bit misleading as the infantry regiments aren't the same as other regiments. I'm not sure how to word this. Brettr 08:52, 2005 Apr 26 (UTC)

Simply mention that the Australian Army is modelled after the the British system, so that infantry regiments contain multiple battalions but that armour, artillery, engineer, special forces, etc 'Regiments' are the size of a single battalion. LamontCranston 04:31, 2005 Aug 20 (UTC)

Why does this article mention a possible increase in the number of Australia's Bradley armoured fighting vehicles? I am sure the Australian Army never had any, nor does it currently have any plans to acquire them.

Length of article[edit]

  • This article is starting to get quite long (or so the warning says every time you edit it). Perhaps it's time to make the History and/or Structure section(s) a separate article and collapse the relevant section(s) in this article? I would recommend making structure of the army a separate article and just including an overview of it in this article with a link to the new article (e.g. Stucture of the Australian Army). - Bambul 11:40, June 15, 2005 (UTC)
    • Military history of Australia seem to have been started, coincidentally, at around the same time as my expansion of the history section. I guess the two should be merged somehow, but I'm not sure how to go about it and don't reall have time at the moment.Grant65 (Talk) 13:04, Jun 16, 2005 (UTC)


Please do not fill the article with html comments. Comments should be made on this page.

Units of the Regular Army[edit]

This section is a mishmash of corps and units. Are the terms "combat support arms" and "Combat Service Support" (used under the heading "Units of the Regular Army") part of army doctrine. The terms I was taught are simple combat arms (inc sigs, sappers and aviation) and service corps. These terms sound very dubious to me, I can't imagine labelling the new attack helicopter units as "combat supprt".

Yes, they are... for example "10 FSB" (10 Force Support) "3 CSSB" (3 Combat Service Support Battalion). Also, 5/7 RAR is becomming demalgamated.

To back up the last note, yes the terms "combat support" and "Combat Service Support" are officially used as part of army doctrine. As for saying that you cant see the new attack helicopter as being "combat support" its not. I have it on good authority that Aviation is now designated as a combat corps. However, relegating the Royal Regiment of Australian Artillery as "combat support" Figure that one out!

Counting the Leopards[edit]

To whoever (IP keeps changing the statistics to only 71 Leopard tanks, the ADF has 90 Leopard gun tanks. Or at least the Anzac Steel page on the Leopard thinks so:

As does several other sites such as Defense Industry Daily:

and a couple of more important pages like the Australian Army's own newspaper:

and the Australian National Audit Office: see under Section 4 "Track Manoeuvre Systems Program Office" which incidentally also indicates only 59 M1s are being bought.

The ADF has 71 Leopard 1 Main Battle Tanks, the other 19 are recovery vehicles or something. Everything I've read says 71 Main Battle Tanks, not 90. Suck shit.

  • Straight to abuse, how nice. Obviously you haven't bothered to read the 4 links I provided. There are 90 AS1 gun tanks, 5 bridge layers and 8 ARVs. Ways 05:02, 19 September 2006 (UTC)

ROE people!!! be nice. im going with 90 Eevo 21:24, 19 September 2006 (UTC)

Jesus Christ on a pogo stick have your bloody 90 Leopards I don't really even care!

  • Eloquent to the end I see, the tanks aren't mine they belong to the Australian Government and you very clearly did care or you would not have spent the time to edit the number in the first place. If Wikipedia is to be at all useful it had better at least be accurate and not based on the ill-informed opinion of an anonymous editor. Ways 14:26, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

Look I'm sorry for the harsh language, I was a bit pissed off being challenged about my knowledge of the Australian army. Its just everything I've ever read said 71 Leopard tanks, but it looks I was wrong. Lets move on.

  • Fair enough. If it helps any I have a distant memory of being told once they only operate around seventy of the ones they have, the balance are either in storage/rebuild/overhaul or issued as replacement vehicles when one needs to be overhauled, or at the School of Armour. But I couldn't tell you which. Ways 05:47, 21 September 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, well where getting rid of them now, we should of got Leopard 2's in stead of Abrams. And besides, why did we only buy 59 Abrams?

  • I'm not really sure, I think it works out as around 4 squadrons (3 operational plus 1 for the School) plus an HQ section. Depending on which way the political wind is blowing there may be a subsequent purchase of aditional vehicles as there was for Centurion and Leopard after a couple of years, but I wouldn't count on it. It's a bit late to change now anyway, the first Abrams have arrived [1] Ways 06:40, 22 September 2006 (UTC)

Well I guess we'll have to wait and see. Besides, Tanks are expensive to run, seeing as the amount of fuel they consume. Apparently Abrams take 40 litres of fuel to start up. Won't be to good when fuel becomes really expensive.

Recruiting issues in article[edit]

In regards to the bit about recruiting in the main article. Despite the media beatup about falling recruitments the facts are that recruitment is falling in PROFESSIONAL occupations in the Army, like Doctors, Nurses, Dentists etc They are still recruiting the dumb ones ;)

Numbers especially for infantry are that large that the School of Cool, aka the School of Infantry is actually full and that Diggers are getting their IET training directly at the Battalions now. I'd suggest checking this fact out and amending your article :) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 16:06, 10 February 2007 (UTC).

If the article's wrong, why don't you correct it yourself? This is "the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit" after all. --Nick Dowling 22:38, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

Article Ratings[edit]

I believe the start class and low importance ratings of this article should be re-evaluated. Especially the low importance rating, considering articles such as Fremantle Prison, 2006 Australian Grand Prix and 2006-07 Australian Capital Territory budget are rated high importance.

Totally agree! The Bryce 11:07, 21 April 2007 (UTC)

The article hadn't recieved a rating. I've just rated it as being of high importance. --Nick Dowling 11:11, 21 April 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Nick, I actually removed the low importance rating with my edit. I thought it was pretty offensive.RP Bravo 11:07, 23 April 2007 (UTC)
OK - my mistake. I wonder why it ever received such a low importance rating ? --Nick Dowling 11:10, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

?Regular Force?[edit]

"Regular Force" is the templates name given to the link to the basic article "Australian Army" which is misleading; as the article (as it should) gives an overview of both Regular Army and Army Reserve elements.

If some regular member is keen to create an article specifically on the ARA (excluding the reserve elements) in addition to the overall "Australian Army" that would be good. Linking the entire army, under a reg only link is inappropriate. —Preceding unsigned comment added by TInTIn (talkcontribs) 06:56, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

Articles with specifically-marked weasel-worded phrases?[edit]

Where?--mrg3105mrg3105 06:41, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

In Australian Army#Current recruiting issues, third parragraph:
Along with this announcement, many claim{{Who?|date=November 2007}} that a need for more and better equipment is required, possibly meaning an increase in the numbers of M113 APCs, Bushmaster IMV and M1A1 Abrams tanks being ordered.
Hope that helps. - BillCJ (talk) 06:57, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Guess what... seem to agree by using the Wikipedia weasel words as a wholesale quote :O)--mrg3105mrg3105 07:08, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

Rank Abbreviations[edit]

I agree with Nick that the common forms (eg Lt Gen) should be used not the official military abbreviation (eg LTGEN). I've never seen the latter used in non-military publications. I don't think the argument that the military abbreviation is more correct is valid, perhaps in an article about ranks. Brettr (talk) 06:47, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

It is a prefix to their names. Proper form should be used of the persons organization. The abbreviations LTGEN and GEN, are no more ugly than say, FM. Conversely, if you would like, we might spell out their rank titles. Which would be more appropriate. --< Nicht Nein! (talk) 06:57, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
The Australian military's capitalisation of all letters in the short version of ranks is not normally used outside the military (for instance, in newspaper articles and books), and as such isn't appropriate here. Wikipedia is not bound by the ADF's style guides when writing about military topics and does not use these capitalisations as they are not generally used. Anyway, Defence generally doesn't use capitalised ranks in its press releases and other publications aimed at the general public (this press release is a good example - the capitalised abbreviation is only used in the bit at the bottom directed at the defence media). Nick Dowling (talk) 08:01, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
From what I see in the article, I gather you are advocating spelling out their rank titles, good. --< Nicht Nein! (talk) 09:23, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:Rising sun version 3.gif[edit]

The image Image:Rising sun version 3.gif is used in this article under a claim of fair use, but it does not have an adequate explanation for why it meets the requirements for such images when used here. In particular, for each page the image is used on, it must have an explanation linking to that page which explains why it needs to be used on that page. Please check

  • That there is a non-free use rationale on the image's description page for the use in this article.
  • That this article is linked to from the image description page.

Size of Army?[edit]

In the article, size is listed as "26,611 (regular) 15,892 (reservists)". says this; [quote]There were more than 51 500 permanent full-time military personnel in the ADF in 2006-07 and over 19 500 Reserve military personnel.[/quote] That's quite a difference in numbers... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:36, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

That's because those figures are for the whole defence force. --Searle, L. (talk) 03:17, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

This is an automated notice by FairuseBot. For assistance on the image use policy, see Wikipedia:Media copyright questions. --21:34, 2 October 2008 (UTC)

Just from an old digger - Military comes from militia meaning ground forces, not Navy or Air force so when referring to the army they are military. Also HRH Queen Elizabeth is the Commander of the Australian Army and the entire defence force through the Governor General.

Under Section 68 of the Constitution, the Governor-General is the Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Force, although in practice he or she acts only on the advice of Ministers of the Government. The Minister for Defence is responsible for Australia’s defence policy. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:01, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

Two comments relating to the statement "Military comes from militia". (1) The words "military" and "militia" both come ultimately from the Latin "miles" (genitive "militis") meaning "soldier", but neither of the two comes from the other. (2) When considering what a word means, what matters is what the word is normally used to mean and understood to mean, which is very often quite different from the meaning of another word it is derived from. JamesBWatson (talk) 10:39, 13 April 2012 (UTC)

Incorrect equipment name[edit]

Although a small error, the FN Minimi is actually referred to as the F89 Minimi in the Australian Army, although practically the same thing. [2] JTod94 (talk) 01:53, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

2010 Reorganization[edit]

I have just finished updating the graphic commons:File:Australia Land Forces.png to reflect the 2010 reorganization. Two question remains tough:

  • are the 21 and 22 Construction Regiments still active or have they been folded into the 19th Chief Engineer Works??
  • is the 17 Signals Regiment of the 17 Brigade the same as the 17 Command Support Regiment??

thanks in advance, for answer to these two questions. --noclador (talk) 15:39, 21 March 2010 (UTC)


I have removed the following paragraphs from the article for now, as an article of this prominence is ill-served by the inclusion of un-sourced material. I agree that such information is important as it adds some context to the article, and I am happy for it to be included if reliable citations for it are provided. As a suggestion this could probably be included in a section on capabilities.

The Australian Army is oriented toward low- and medium-intensity operations against symmetric and asymmetric enemies. The Army has traditionally been structured as a light infantry force. This has changed somewhat in recent years, with an increased emphasis on motorised and mechanised forces. In the next few years, two of the seven regular infantry battalions will be mechanised (using the upgraded M113 APC) and two will be motorised (using the Bushmaster). Nevertheless, the motorised and mechanised battalions still train with an orientation toward operations in close combat and have a high emphasis on patrolling and other dismounted operations, thus maintaining the traditional Australian skill set.

Until recently, the main area of operations has been Asia, particularly South East Asia and the Pacific, so the light infantry orientation has not been a hindrance. In fact the Australian Army is known to produce troops and units with a very high standard of jungle warfare, patrolling, ambushing and other infantry skills.

Due to Australia's small population, the Army will always make up only a statistically small role in coalition operations. Successive Australian governments since 1989 have deployed components of the ADF with specific skill sets, so that the Australian contribution is always of greater significance than raw numbers of troops would suggest. Often this has taken the form of the deployment of special forces, though this has changed in recent years, for example in Afghanistan. Australian forces have always trained with and maintained close relationships the US and British forces and are now being equipped to better interoperate with US/British/coalition forces. The defence relationship with US forces is probably now closer than it has been at any point since the Vietnam war, especially at a working level.

Happy to discuss. Cheers. Anotherclown (talk) 13:05, 12 June 2010 (UTC)

It looks accurate, but I agree that citations are needed. There are also differing opinions on these topics which should be acknowledged - for instance, some commentators argue that the Army's infantry battalions are too 'light' to be used in any kind of intensive combat and it's also been suggested that the M113s are now so outdated (even following their upgrade) that the mechanised battalions are ineffective and likely to suffer heavy casualties in open warfare. Nick-D (talk) 23:23, 12 June 2010 (UTC)
I also agree, in fact I had been considering doing the same when I saw it last week but didn't get around to it. Agree also with Nick's comments, the removed text does appear to be broadly accurate, but there are certainly other opinions out there. — AustralianRupert (talk) 23:57, 12 June 2010 (UTC)
Indeed as you say Nick, a full treatment of the topic would need to consider how the Light Infantry model limited the governments land power options during the 2003 Iraq War, given the concern about involvement in high intensity warfare and house-to-house fighting. Anotherclown (talk) 02:57, 13 June 2010 (UTC)

Rising sun image[edit]

While SVG is a preferred format on the Wikimedia projects, SVG images should be the same as the original however this SVG image is not the same is not the same as the original Rising Sun. In the Australian military it is offensive to recreate an historic image which isn't the same as the original and also goes against what Wikipedia is about. Bidgee (talk) 04:06, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Ok mate I think you're coming on a bit strong. I'm sure Fry1989 means no disrespect and is only trying to improve the article. Personnally as a serving member I have be staring at a slouch hat for the last five minutes and can find nothing wrong with his addition. It certainly seems to be a clearer image than the current one. Maybe you could actually explain to him what is wrong with it (because its not cear to me). Cheers. Anotherclown (talk) 05:47, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Hi, Bidgee, I'm glad to see someone passionate about the subject, but could you please explain exactly what is wrong with Fry's image? As per what Anotherclown has said, I'm not sure what is wrong with the image that Fry has added. I have served in the Army for five years and difference is not readily apparent to me (I am also looking at my slouch hat right now.) I'm fairly sure that Fry meant no offence by its addition. AustralianRupert (talk) 06:23, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Well the SVG (enlarging the SVG shows it well) has random triangles, no white/transplant background above the scrolls of THE and ARMY and the cross on top of the Queens crown is a little larger then it is shown on this "Rising Sun". Bidgee (talk) 06:53, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Hi, yes, I can see the issue with the image not having the transparent background above the scrolls, but the "random triangles" do appear on the real thing (if one looks really closely). They are actually short sun rays/bayonets (depending upon one's take). AustralianRupert (talk) 10:29, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Thanks Bidgee I can see those issues now also. Cheers. Anotherclown (talk) 21:43, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Would someone be able to upload the SVG file somewhere again? It would be valuable to have it viewable. RonCYA (talk) 13:43, 23 February 2012 (UTC)

Recruiting Issues Redux 2011[edit]

I would like to re-open the issue of the recruiting section of the article. From reading the discussion page I surmise that much content that was on the main page has been moved to more appropriate sections, or has been expanded into an article of their own, as more information has been added over time. IMO this has made this page informative and concise, providing basic information while acting as a "portal" linking to more specialist pages. I think that this has left "Current recruiting issues" in the Personnel section as a problem for several reasons:

  1. The references are starting to get a bit old. An issue from 2006 may or may not be relevant to 2011, but the issues presented (additional recruiting needs, unit de-linking and raising, and a comment volley between (now former PM) John Howard and (now former PM) Michael Somare) are now 5 years old.
  2. Many of the statements aren't cited or are contradictory. Either there aren't enough recruits or there are too many, but how can there be both? There's no explanation. IMO if the information isn't a current issue then it shouldn't be so prominent (or maybe not there at all).
  3. Which leads to the final problem, it is particularly over-represented on the main Australian Army page. With all the other sections expanded into other appropriate articles or their own article, this section has been orphaned (in a way) and now appears to take up a disproportionate amount of space on the Australian Army page for what may or may not be an issue any longer. A quick search reveals no active "conversation" on the issue (by which I mean news articles and politician/commentator comments), and those that do reveal that there are TOO many recruits but that there are shortfalls in a few specialist roles.

Although I hesitate to cite the Chicken Little-like incompetence of The Australian on defence issues:

I would suggest that the section is deleted and replaced with a smaller one addressing recruiting issues as they are now and not 4-5 years ago. If the information it currently contains is deemed useful if not crucial and needs to be retained, then perhaps a linked article that addresses recruiting and retention issues in the ADF, or even one with a historic perspective (recruiting and retention issues for the ADF is not a new phenomena). This is almost the exact same issue that was raised on the Discussion page four years ago. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 113727b (talkcontribs) 20:02, 23 June 2011 (UTC)

Hi, your proposals seem reasonable to me. I've not got much time to help rewrite the section at the moment, though. If you are keen, I'd like to encourage you to have a go yourself, although its probably best to see what some other editors think about it first. If I might offer a suggestion, perhaps you could work on rewriting the section in a sandbox in your userspace and direct editors there to see what you are proposing. Regards, AustralianRupert (talk) 08:04, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
I'd go further: the current material is hopelessly outdated and no longer relevant. The article should discuss the Army's manpower situation (I recall reading that it's now got lots of infantrymen, but is still very short on technical personnel) but almost none of the existing content is useful for this. As such I've boldly removed the material from the article. Nick-D (talk) 08:13, 24 June 2011 (UTC)

Forces Command Link[edit]

When you click on the highlighted text "Forces Command", it links you to the US Army Forces Command page instead of the Australian Army Forces Command page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:56, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

G'day, I've adjusted a point of aim right. I don't think that the Australian version has an article yet. Regards, AustralianRupert (talk) 10:56, 7 August 2012 (UTC)

Addition of images[edit]

This is the second time I have had to remove the bulk addition of images to this page. Per the BOLD, REVERT and DISCUSS cycle this needs to be discussed BEFORE being added again (see WP:BRD). Whilst I have no issue with adding a few additional images indicative of the history of the organization care needs to be taken not to add too many as it causes overcrowding of the (limited) text. That said my main concern is that several of these images are non-free and need a fair use rationale if they are going to be used. These images are currently used on other articles and have an FUR for that use but not for this article. I believe it would be fairly difficult to sustain an FUR for this article as they are mainly being used decoratively and as such adding them here is only likely to draw the crabs (i.e. image police) and will result in their inevitable deletion and loss to the encyclopedia. Pls acquaint yourself with our image use policy before adding images in the future. Anotherclown (talk) 02:45, 17 December 2013 (UTC)

I agree, and have just re-removed the images. Nick-D (talk) 06:53, 17 December 2013 (UTC)
Ok still no discussion but I'll continue for the sake of it. With this edit [3] I restored the removal of an image depicting the Australian Army colours on parade as it seemed far more relevant to the section (entitled "Colours, standards and guidons") than two images of Australian forces in Afghanistan. I am of course happy to discuss this if any other editor disagrees. Anotherclown (talk) 04:30, 18 December 2013 (UTC)

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