WITH THE GREATEST RESPECT By Lee Dontmatter, 7 RAR
A drunken retard with the situational awareness of a stone would realise that some of the brass in the Defence Force today have no compassion, and no skills to interact with the coal face (diggers) and quite simply put could not give a flying ****!
It got me thinking and I come back to a moment in 2007 that not only fills me with a little pride but also reinstates my deep respect for a former officer, under whom I never served, but had the pleasure of speaking with, and made me wish there were more just like him!
We were in Dili during TLBG 3 in ’07/’08 and word got around that the newly elected Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, was stopping in for a visit on his way home after visiting the blokes posted over in the MEAO. Now, most of us were not impressed and cries of “If it ain’t Johnny, we don’t want a ****ing photo’’ went crying through the night! I was also warned by the boss not to go near the PM as I have a habit of speaking up no matter the company and I guess he was covering his arse. Not that I gave two flying ****s ’cause I didn’t want to shake hands with the cunt, let alone have it immortalised by a photograph for all generations to see!
The next day the PM came, made his speech and me and a good mate of mine were standing at the back laughing at the squeezers who were lining up for a photo opportunity despite their protests the previous night that they would not. This smart-looking bloke was ignoring the rest of the ****ing freak show. He came up to my mate and I, put out his hand to say G’day and introduced himself as Duncan Lewis. Now, I knew full well who this bloke was. I have a pretty good knack for remembering names etc. Not only was he Duncan Lewis, he was Major General Duncan Lewis AO, DSC, CSC (RTD) former CO SASR and later overall command of the Australian Special Forces. He was now a civvie and in the position of a national security adviser to the Rudd Labor Government. Here was this bloke ignoring the limelight, not even paying attention to his fellow officers, just so he could speak to two baggy-arsed grunts standing out the back for 20 minutes or so, smoking durries in total awe that this great bloke would want to speak to us. He politely excused himself and when Rudd and his entourage were leaving, Major General Duncan Lewis AO, DSC, CSC (RTD) (I am using his full title out of total respect to the man) spotted my mate and I in the crowd again. He approached us to shake our hand and thanked us for our time!
What a great leader of men! I wish there were more like him!