Possums & Bird Dogs: Australian Army Aviation's 161 Reconnaissance Flight in South Vietnam

By Peter Nolan | Go to book overview

Notes

Prologue
1. Bevan Smith, interview, 19 November 2004.
2. Air Staff Directive 235, circa 1960.
3. ‘Viet Cong’ is derived from ‘Vietnam Cong San’, meaning ‘Vietnamese Communist’.

1 161 Reconnaissance Flight: Formation and deployment
1. Australian Army practice is to designate commanders (up to the rank of major) of minor units as Officers Commanding (OCs). Higher ranking officers commanding larger units (e. g. battalions) are Commanding Officers (COs).
2. Cessna O-1 ‘Bird Dog’ light aircraft of the 19th Tactical Air Support Squadron were used for Forward Air Control (FAC) operations.
3. Contraction of ‘Aviation’ and ‘Electronics’ a general reference to aircraft communications–electronics systems.
4. Paul Lipscombe, interview, 5 January 2005.
5. The Army’s senior non-commissioned rank is Warrant Officer (WO). There are two classes, WO1 and WO2, with WO1 the senior.
6. Jim Crook, interview, 23 March 2005.
7. Paul Lipscombe, op. cit.
8. DUKW was an amphibious vehicle used by the Australian Army in the 1960s.
9. Jim Crook, op. cit.
10. A technical procedure carried out to recalibrate an aircraft’s compass after significant events. For aircraft arriving in Vietnam, a compass swing was necessary because of the significant change in magnetic deviation at the new location.

-221-

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