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bobdina
10-03-2009, 08:50 PM
TROOPER X

For acts of gallantry in action in hazardous circumstances in Iraq while on Operation FALCONER

Trooper X’s patrol was tasked with clearing an Iraqi installation, to prevent it being used for the command and control of Iraqi theatre ballistic missiles. Trooper X was the machine gunner in the exposed .50 Calibre mounting ring in his patrol vehicle. During the action, an enemy special operations force of two vehicles and up to 20 heavily armed personnel engaged the SAS patrol. Whilst in contact with numerically superior enemy forces, Trooper X’s actions in destroying the enemy vehicles gave the Australian force the freedom of movement to complete the mission.

In a hazardous situation and under fire, Trooper X immediately engaged and destroyed the first enemy vehicle with his Javelin missile system. Having limited the enemy’s ability to manoeuvre, the patrol assaulted forward and Trooper X engaged a further Iraqi position located to the south with his machine gun. Trooper X re-engaged the enemy with his machine gun, demonstrating great composure.

Trooper X then re-engaged and destroyed the second enemy vehicle with the Javelin, dispersing nearby enemy soldiers who were setting up a mortar position. Subsequently, as the patrol closed on the enemy position, Trooper X engaged a mortar tube with his sniper rifle, hitting the tube with his first round and causing the weapon to explode. At this stage individual enemy started to surrender, creating a situation where surrendering soldiers were intermingled with other enemy who were still engaging the SAS patrol. Trooper X then judiciously placed well aimed shots within close proximity of the enemy that were still engaging from concealed positions, forcing them to surrender.

Throughout this engagement, Trooper X demonstrated skills and composure of the highest standard. He acted with very little direction and his decisions and subsequent actions had significant impacts on the outcome of the engagement. His actions in destroying the enemy vehicles gave the Australian assaulting forces freedom of movement and put the Iraqi forces under immediate pressure. Fort he entire engagement, Trooper X was subject to enemy fire passing close overhead. He readily accepted the personal danger and disregarded his own safety while acquiring the enemy vehicles with the Javelin. His conduct whilst in a hazardous situation in contact with numerically superior enemy forces was most gallant and led to the success of the action.

Trooper X’s acts of gallantry played a crucial role in gaining the initiative for his patrol and defeating an aggressive enemy force. His actions contributed significantly to the Coalition’s strategic success in denying Iraq the use of their theatre ballistic missiles. His performance brings great credit to the SAS Regiment, the Australian Army and the Australian Defence Force.