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The Royal Australian Regiment


The Battalions


The Royal Australian Regiment (RAR) is the regular infantry formation of the Australian Army. Currently there are six separate battalions:
1st Battalion (1RAR) - Light Infantry
2nd Battalion (2RAR) - Light Infantry
3rd Battalion (3RAR) - Parachute Infantry
4th Battalion (Commando) (4RAR [Cdo]) - Commando
5th/7th Battalion (5/7RAR) - Mechanised Infantry
6th Battalion (6RAR) - Light Infantry

History of 1RAR 2RAR and 3RAR

At the end of WWII the 9th. Division was then in Borneo and on the call for volunteers. Those from the 9th. Division congregated on the island of Moratai in a newly formed Battalion, the 66th. Australian Infantry Battalion. Joining them to form 34 Brigade were volunteers of the 7th. Division to form the 65th. Australian Infantry Battalion, and those from the 3rd, 6th. and 11th. Divisions to form the 67th. Australian Infantry Battalion. After much waiting the Brigade was to arrive in Japan in January 1946 to take up occupation duties in the Hiroshima prefecture.

Late in 1948 the three battalions were renamed the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions, Australian Regiment. With the winding down of the duties in Japan the 1st. Battalion and the 2nd Battalion returned to Australia in December, settling in Ingleburn and Puckapunyal respectively. In March 1949 the Royal prefix was approved and the Battalions became the battalions of the Royal Australian Regiment. In those days, however, the 2nd Battalion was a mere shadow of its former self with many members staying in Japan with the 3rd Battalion and many others taking their discharge; and it became a training battalion for new recruits to Infantry.
Battalion Birthdays
Royal Australian Regiment 23 November
1 RAR 12 October
2 RAR 16 October
3 RAR 20 October
4 RAR 1 February
5 RAR 1 March
6 RAR 6 June (6th of the 6th)
7 RAR 1 September
8 RAR 8 August (8th of the 8th)
9 RAR 13 November
2/4 RAR 15 August
5/7 RAR 3 December
8/9 RAR 31 October

Former Battalions include
• 2nd/4th Battalion (1973-1995)
• 5th Battalion (1965-1973)
• 7th Battalion (1965-1973)
• 8th Battalion (1966-1973)
• 9th Battalion (1967-1973)
• 8th/9th Battalion (1973-1997)


1RAR "Big Blue One"

Raised 12 October 1945
Battalion colour Garter Blue
Battalion nickname/s Pony Soldiers; Big Blue One
Battalion march Waltzing Matilda
Current home Lavarack Barracks, Townsville, Qld
Mascot Shetland Pony; "Septimus"

Tours of duty overseas.

Japan As part of British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF), 1946 1948
Korea 2 tours during the Korean War, 1952/53, 1954/56
Malaya During the Emergency, 1959/61
Viet Nam 2 tours; 1 with US 173rd Airborne; 1 with 1 ATF, 1965/66, 1968/69
Malaysia With 28 Commonwealth Infantry Brigade, 1969
Singapore As part of ANZUK, 1970
Fiji Operation Morris Dance to evacuate Australian civilians, 1987
Somalia Operation Restore Hope, 1992/93
East Timor


1 RAR is to fight using maneuver warfare as our guiding doctrine. To that end, we have seven objectives:
a. We are to be Battle Fit,
b. We are to be Battle Shots,
c. We are to be Battle Smart,
d. We are to be Battle Leaders,
e. We are to support Family Readiness,
f. We are to give people a 'Fair Go,' and
g. We are to care for our Soldiers.



Raised 1945
Battalion colour Black
Battalion nickname Second to none
Battalion marches Ringo Back in Black
Current home Barracks, Townsville, Qld

Tours of Duty Overseas
East Timor

With the outbreak of the Korean War in June 1950, Australia committed several navy vessels and the RAAF's 77 Squadron to the United Nations forces set to oppose the North Korean invasion of the south. In September 1950 3RAR joined 27th. Commonwealth Brigade in the land war which saw a rapid advance to the Chinese border and as rapid a withdrawal to south of the South Korean capital, Seoul.

By 1952 the 1st. Battalion had joined the 3rd in operations, and later in that year 2RAR was warned for service in Korea. Throughout 1950-1952 thousands of special enlistees (K Force) had passed through Puckapunyal and the Battalion in training as reinforcements for 3RAR and later 1RAR. This role was taken over by the formation of 4RAR in 1952.

In March 1953 the 2nd Battalion sailed for Korea and took over from 1RAR, and thereafter till the Armistice on 27th. July 1953 fought with tenacity and outstanding steadfastness particularly at the Battle of the Hook from 24th. to 26th. July where it earned the Battle Honour "Samichon".

The Battalion returned to Enoggera, Queensland in 1954 and in 1955 was warned for service in the Malayan Emergency and arrived there on 19th. October 1955. The counter terrorist operations engaged in by the Battalion were taxing, but the two year tour of duty was a totally new experience for members of the Battalion, and they performed these tasks with the same outstanding solidarity as they had in Korea.

The Battalion trained at Holsworthy from the time of its return from Malaya in 1957. It had been very much reorganised into and out of a pentropic organisation, and sailed from there to Malaysia taking over from 1RAR in October 1961 for its second tour of duty with the Far East Strategic Reserve where it more than lived up to the traditions of Australian infantry, undertaking the same difficult task of winkling out communist terrorists from jungle hideouts.

The Battalion returned to Australia in 1963 and this time was stationed again at Enoggera, Queensland. Here the emphasis was still on training for jungle operations and in 1967 the Battalion was warned for service in Vietnam where it arrived in May of that year. Their arrival began a close association with the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment where a company of New Zealanders served the last six months of their overseas tour with the Australian Task Force, and a company of 1RNZIR became a 2RAR rifle company. During the year 1967/68, the Battalion conducted or took part in 23 major operations and numerous minor operations. It returned to Townsville and gradually rebuilt till warned for service in Vietnam where it landed in May 1970, conducting five major Battalion operations and being involved in numerous combined operations again as an ANZAC Battalion.

The Battalion returned to Australia in May 1971 where it settled in Townsville.

In 1973 the government decided to reduce the armed forces and 2RAR became linked with 4RAR as 2/4RAR. In 1993, as part of the operational deployment force, a company of 2/4RAR was directed to assist 1RAR in its operations in Somalia.

In late 1994 the Battalion was involved with the protection of Australian medical personnel in Rwanda with a company of men, during which time a de-linking occurred in February 1995 and 2RAR returned to the Order of Battle.

The 2nd Battalion has a fine record, both in war and peace in the defence of Australia, and continually lives up to those special conditions of an infantry unit, courage, initiative, intelligence and tenacity. 2nd Battalion had 72 Australians killed overseas as well as 10 New Zealanders and 4 others (one Australian, two Koreans and one Vietnamese) who were attached for service with the Battalion.

Seventy four Awards and Decorations have been presented to serving members of the Battalion between 1945 and 1995 with 30 for Korea, 15 for service in Malaya/Malaysia, 27 for service in Vietnam, and 2 for service in Rwanda.

The 2nd Battalion has a fine record, both in war and peace in the defence of Australia, and continually lives up to those special conditions of an infantry unit, courage, braver initiative, and the digger spirit. 2nd Battalion has had over 70 personnel lost on overseas deployment, as well as being decorated with over 70 awards.



Raised 1945
Battalion colour Rifle Green
Battalion name Old Faithful
Battalion march 'Our Director' and 'Highland Laddie' with 'Kapyong' used on Kapyong Day only
Current home Holsworthy, Sydney
Mascot none

Overseas Tours of Duty
Korea - As a result of the Battle of Kapyong the Battalion was awarded the US Distinguished Unit Citation

The Distinguished Unit Citation was redesignated the Presidential Unit Citation (Army) 3 November 1966.
East Timor

The role of the 3rd Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment is to seek out and close with the enemy, to kill or capture him, to seize and hold ground and to repel attack by day and by night regardless of season whether or terrain.

Capability Statement
3 RAR Parachute Battalion Group (PBG) can rapidly deploy using airborne techniques and then conduct follow on infantry operations.


5/7 RAR was formed on 3 December 1973 at Holsworthy Barracks in Sydney by combining the 5th and 7th Battalions of the Royal Australian Regiment to form a single light infantry battalion.
In 1999 5/7 RAR relocated from Holsworthy to Darwin. Later that year the battalion made its first operational deployment when it deployed to East Timor as part of INTERFET. This deployment proved highly successful, with 5/7 RAR providing the force with a powerful and highly mobile battalion. After a seven-month tour, the Battalion returned to Australia on ANZAC Day 2000. 5/7 RAR served a second tour in East Timor between October 2002 and May 2003, though it operated largely as a light infantry battalion on this deployment.
5/7 RAR's most recent deployments have been to Iraq. In 2004 5/7 RAR provided a rifle company for security duties in Baghdad. Since April 2005 a rifle company from the battalion has formed part of the Al Muthanna Task Group in southern Iraq. 5/7 RAR has provided the headquarters and support elements of the second rotation of the Task Group since November 2005. The rifle company in Iraq is mounted in ASLAVs from the 2nd Cavalry Regiment as it has been judged that these fast and well armed vehicles are better suited to conditions in Iraq than 5/7 RAR's elderly M113s
5/7 RAR is currently Australia's only mechanised infantry battalion, though the 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment will convert from an airborne battalion to a mechanised battalion and become part of the 1st Brigade by 2011. Under the doctrine developed by 1st Brigade, 5/7 RAR combines with 1st Armoured Regiment to form two battle groups (one ‘infantry heavy’ and one ‘armour heavy’).
Raised 5RAR & 7RAR linked on 3 Dec 1973
Battalion colour gold and maroon
Battalion nickname
Battalion march Dominaise
Current home Darwin NT
Mascot .


Raised 6 June 1965
Battalion colour Khaki
Battalion nickname
Battalion march Spirit of Youth (for brass band) and The Crusaders
Current home Long Tan Lines, Gallipoli Barracks, Enoggera, Brisbane QLD
6RAR was raised under Lieutenant Colonel C.M. Townsend in Brisbane at Alamein Barracks, Enoggera on 6 June 1965. Initially the Battalion consisted of a nucleus command structure of Officers and NCO, two rifle companies and some specialists provided by 2RAR.
The Battalion was brought up to full strength when a large draft of soldiers from the first National Service intake arrived in September 1965.
Vietnam 1966 - 1967
Following an intensive period of training for war, the Battalion farewelled Brisbane by a march through the city and embarked on HMAS SYDNEY for South Vietnam in May 1966. The Battalion arrived in time to celebrate its first birthday at Vung Tau before moving forward to join 5 RAR at Nui Dat in Phuoc Tuy Province and entering service as part of 1 ATF. During the period June to August 1966, 6 RAR conducted two major operations. Operation ENOGGERA was the search and clearance of the previously unsettled village of Long Phuoc, and Operation HOBART was a five-day search and destroy mission. The two operations accounted for 36 enemy casualties and the destruction of several camp installations and caches. Operation HOBART also saw the Battalion come in contact with the enemy provincial Mobile Battalion D445 which, was subsequently met and defeated at Long Tan.
Long Tan
A mortar, and recoilless rifle attack, on the Task Force area opened operation SMITHFIELD, on the night of 16/17 August 1966. B Company was initially dispatched to clear the area to the east of the Task Force base. D Company took over from B Company on 18 August 1966. D Company made contact with the enemy force of regimental size and was soon under attack from three sides. The battle was fought into the night under a blanket of mist and heavy monsoonal rain, but D Company held its ground with heroism and grim determination. The remainder of the Battalion deployed to aid the beleaguered Company. With the help of armoured personnel carriers of 3 Troop, 1 APC Squadron hit the flank of a battalion size force which was forming up to assault the rear of D Company, inflicted many casualties and forced the enemy from the battlefield. A Presidential Unit Citation was awarded to D Company by the then President of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson. The 18 August is now commemorated each year as Long Tan Day, in memory of the eighteen soldiers who gave their lives in battle. Between August 1966 and prior to June 1967 when 6 RAR departed for Australia, 6 RAR took part in seventeen more Battalion operations and supported a number of 5 RAR operations. These operations, along with the routine patrolling around the Task Force area, gradually wrested control of the Province from the Viet Cong. Twenty-three members of the Battalion received gallantry awards for the tour and 37 members gave their lives.
Townsville 1967 - 1969
The Battalion celebrated its second birthday at sea aboard HMAS SYDNEY during the return voyage to Australia. On arrival in Townsville the Battalion occupied Long Tan Lines at Lavarack Barracks. On 8 January 1968, LTCOL D.M. Butler assumed command of the Battalion. On 10 May 1968 His Excellency, the Governor General of Australia, The Right honourable Lord Casey, GCMG, CH, DSO, MC, KStJ presented 6 RAR with the Queens and Regimental Colours. The Presidential Unit Citation awarded to D Company for the Battle of Long Tan was presented to the Officer Commanding D Company by the Prime Minister of Australia, The Right Honourable J.G. Gorton, MP, at Long Tan Lines, Lavarack Barracks on 18 August 1968. The Battalion then commenced another period of intensive training for war.
Vietnam 1969 - 1970
6 RAR embarked on its second tour of South Vietnam on 7 to 9 May, to relieve 4 RAR. Once in Vietnam the Battalion was renamed 6 RAR/NZ (ANZAC) Battalion on 19 May 1969. This reflected the inclusion of a New Zealand component of two rifle companies, two sections of mortars and two assault pioneer sections. The first Battalion operation was one of the most productive of the tour. Operation LAVARACK started on 30 May 1969 with the establishment of a fire-support and patrol base to the North of Nui Dat. Each Company then commenced reconnaissance in force of separate operational areas. By the time the operations ended on 1 July 1969 there had been 85 contacts which cost the enemy 102 dead and at least 22 wounded. The Battalions casualties were three dead and 29 wounded. The third anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan was commemorated by a memorial service on the original battleground during which a large cross was erected. During the tour 15 Battalion operations were conducted. Reflecting the increasing control that the Australians exerted over the province, 6 RAR/NZ (ANZAC) was called on several times to assist in community projects and in the training of local government forces. Positive signs of the disintegration of the enemy’s command and supply system were identified and by the end of the tour the enemy were forced to operate in small groups only, and struggle for their very existence. As an indication of the success of the tour the enemy suffered 60 dead, 64 confirmed wounded and 51 captured as a result of Battalion operations. The Battalion also captured 480 assorted weapons and 13 tonnes of rice. The Battalion losses were 24 killed and 148 wounded. Twenty-eight members received gallantry awards for the second tour.
10th April 2000, the Battalion Advance Party embarked aboard HMAS Jervis Bay for the journey to East Timor. Over the next two weeks the remainder of the Battalion arrived in East Timor and relived the 5th / 7th Battalion on border duties in Aidabeleten, Batugade, Balibo, Tonobibi, and Maliana. On the 2nd August 2000, whilst patrolling in the vicinity of Foho Leolaco elements of Alpha Coy contacted and engaged members of a militia group resulting in the deaths of 2 militia. This was the first contact of an "enemy" since 1970 and the Battalion once again performed with distinction. 6 RAR were involved with thirteen contacts with militia elements. Members of the Battalion also apprehended substantial numbers of militia and handed them over to the UN CIVPOL.The Battalion was relieved in place by the 1st Battalion and the last members returned to Australia on the 31st October 2000.
In 2001 the Battalion continued training programs participating in joint exercises with U.S. forces in Ex Tandem Thrust and possible participation in the up coming Goodwill Games.
In December 2001 Lieutenant Colonel G.P.H.B Babington assumed command of the Battalion.
In Feb 2002, the Battalion deployed on CHOGM on the Sunshine Coast. Their role involved assisting the Queensland Police Force in the preparation of venues, routes vehicles, with low risk search teams, and in the provision of surveillance assistance. The Sixth Battalion formed part of the Operational Search Battalion for CHOGM. Today the Sixth battalion continues to train at section, platoon, company and battalion levels preparing for what ever tasks may come up in the future. The Sixth Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment has a proud and distinguished history. It will continue so.

RAR colour: Infantry Scarlet

Regt quick march: El Alemein Chosen November 1981 Regt slow march Infantry Song Chosen 1989

Regimental motto: DUTY FIRST (suggested by Major K B Thomas MC of 1 RAR)

Battle Honours: As the formation of the Australian Regiment marked the first ever Australian regular Regiment of Infantry it was decided that the new formation would not inherit any Battle Honours from its parent Units. It was to be a fresh start.
• KOREA 1950-1953
o Sariwon
o Yongyu
o Chongju
o Pakchon
o Uijongbu
o Chuam-ni
o Machwa-san
o Kapyong
o Kowang-San
o The Samichon
• VIET NAM 1965-1972
o Long Tan
o Bien Hoa
o Coral-Balmoral
o Coral
o Balmoral
o Hat Dich
o Binh Ba

O God, We, Who Have Served In The Royal Australian Regiment,
Consecrate Ourselves To You By Giving Ourselves Body And Spirit
To Your Service And To The Service Of Our Fellow Man.
Cleanse From Us Everything That Could Mar This Service.
Grant That We May Live Our Lives
That At All Times We Put Our Duty First.
Help Us To Think Wisely, To Speak Rightly, To Resolve Bravely,
To Act Kindly And To Live Purely.
Give Us The Courage To Defend The Cause Of Justice,
Freedom, Truth And The Right To Liberty.
This We Ask Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

Info from .


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