Australia — Force Support Unit completes successful Middle East rotation

Fol­low­ing more than eight months of suc­cess­ful ser­vice in the Mid­dle East, the qui­et but deter­mined efforts of the 190 mem­bers of Force Sup­port Unit — Four (FSU‑4) have come to an end.

The team, who hailed from approx­i­mate­ly 50 par­ent units, came from all three Aus­tralian Defence Force (ADF) Ser­vices. They pro­vid­ed logis­tics sup­port to ADF oper­a­tions in Afghanistan and the Gulf region of the Mid­dle East Area of Oper­a­tions, assist­ing more than 2350 ADF per­son­nel since Decem­ber last year. 

The Com­mand­ing Offi­cer of FSU‑4, Lieu­tenant Colonel Ron Arm­strong, said the tri-Ser­vice team bond­ed tight­ly from the out­set of the deployment. 

“We acknowl­edged that Defence mem­bers from each of the Ser­vices were serv­ing under the same con­di­tions and that the strengths of each Ser­vice need­ed to be drawn upon to build our own ‘Joint Team Aus­tralia’ cul­ture,” Lieu­tenant Colonel Arm­strong said. 

“One month in, and if it wasn’t for the dif­fer­ent Ser­vice insignia on our uni­forms, it would have been impos­si­ble to tell who was from the Navy, Army or Air Force.” 

Lieu­tenant Colonel Arm­strong said the team forged even clos­er ties after the death of Lance Cor­po­ral Andrew Jones at Patrol Base Mashal on 30 May, 2011. 

“This was a trag­ic inci­dent for the sailors, sol­diers and air­men of the FSU. Our thoughts remain with Lance Cor­po­ral Jones’ fam­i­ly and friends,” Lieu­tenant Colonel Arm­strong said. 

“We decid­ed that the best way to hon­our a mate, who was so com­mit­ted to his work, was to work even hard­er our­selves. So for the final two and half months we were out on our feet exhaust­ed but deserved­ly proud of our achievements.” 

While deployed, the unit accom­plished a num­ber of key feats, includ­ing: the roll-out of the Crye Cam Pre­ci­sion Assault Uni­form and Tiered Body Armour Sys­tem to sol­diers deployed with the Aus­tralian Men­tor­ing Task Force, sup­port­ing the estab­lish­ment of new con­tract arrange­ments for Mid­dle East Logis­tics and Base Sup­port and resup­ply­ing patrol bases using a con­tract­ed heli­copter. FSU‑4 also pro­vid­ed enhanced cater­ing, envi­ron­men­tal health and camp main­te­nance sup­port to MTF patrol bases. 

“Although our role was not as well pub­li­cised as some oth­er units who are serv­ing over here, it was an hon­our to work extreme­ly hard to sup­port our Aus­tralian broth­ers and sis­ters who put them­selves in harms way every day,” Lieu­tenant Colonel Arm­strong said. 

Press release
Min­is­te­r­i­al Sup­port and Pub­lic Affairs,
Depart­ment of Defence,
Can­ber­ra, Australia 

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