8th Battalion's first operation DPR/TV/1232

Accession Number F04419
Collection type Film
Measurement 3 min 7 sec
Object type Actuality footage, Television news footage
Physical description 16mm/b&w/silent
Maker Ward, Peter Anthony
Place made Vietnam: Long Khanh Province, Vietnam: Phuoc Tuy Province
Date made 4 January 1970-7 January 1970
Access Open
Conflict Vietnam, 1962-1975
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC

Australia's newest battalion in Vietnam, the 8th Battalion, is now in the swing of things and having marked successes against the enemy on its first major operation. Here is the first film of the battalion patrolling in the jungles of the war zone. It arrived in Vietnam on November 28 to relieve the 9th Battalion and after a period of familiarisation and acclimatisation, launched Operation Atherton. The operation is in the north of Phuoc Tuy Province and southern Long Khanh Province. The Officer Commanding Delta Company, Major Malcolm Peck of Brisbane, Qld, gives his orders and illustrates on his map as the company sweeps an area of Long Khanh. It is not easy now to pick these newcomers from the more battle-hardened diggers of the other battalions. They have seen action, they have seen death. Big operations are constant vigilant patrolling, checking first one area and then the next. This section of Delta Company spots a bunker. The gun group is moved up to give covering fire if needed and then the rest of the men are brought in to sweep. Carefully the bunkers are searched, but they are unoccupied - the enemy has fled. Cpl Kevin Paulsen of Beverley, WA, goes into a covered bunker, pistol in hand, and makes sure there are no caches hidden away. Nothing found so the company moves on back to patrolling. The men come across a running stream on their march and this is the opportunity to refill waterbottles. It is the dry season now in Vietnam and water is scarce. The 8th Battalion is coming to grips with the enemy on its first major operation in Vietnam. Also identified: Lt Adrian Lombardo of Sandringham, Vic; Sgt Bill Hoban of Salisbury, Qld; Pte Henry Kennell, 22, of Mackay, Qld; Cpl Bill Leebody of Colac, Vic; Pte Lee Satori of Horsham, Vic; Pte Joe Poies of Noble Park, Vic; Cpl Dick Young of Adelaide, SA; Pte Martin (Doc) Timothy, 19, of Clovelly, SA; Pte Allan Smith, 21, of Box Hill, Vic; Signalman Lewis Pattle, 21, of Wagga, NSW; Sgt Peter Buckney of Grovely, Qld; Pte Colin Oliver, 22, of Ashgrove, Qld.

Film order form
  • Video of 8th Battalion's first operation DPR/TV/1232 (video)