Colonel Eric Harold Smith DSO (Ret'd) as the captain Adjutant later a company commander 1st Battalion The Royal Australian Regiment (1 RAR), Korea, 1952-1953, interviewed by Bill Fogarty

Accession Number S02292
Collection type Sound
Measurement 51 min 30 sec
Object type Oral history
Physical description digital audio tape (DAT); BASF DM 124; 44.1kHz; 16 bit; two track mono
Maker Preston, Lenny
Date made 3 July 2001
Access Open
Conflict Korea, 1950-1953
Period 1960-1969
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Copying Provisions Copy provided for personal non-commercial use
Source credit to AWM Oral History Program

Smith speaks of his pre-military background; his posting after commissioning to operational infantry service in New Guinea in July 1945; his service in the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF) in Japan, then with a CMF unit in north-eastern NSW; his transition on posting, from 13th National Service Training Battalion at Ingleburn NSW, to 1st Battalion The Royal Australian Regiment (1 RAR), also at Ingleburn; his role as Adjutant 1 RAR and the preparation of 1 RAR prior to its arrival in Korea to join the 28th Commonwealth Infantry Brigade in June 1952; the coordination involved in taking over from another battalion in the line; the living conditions in the line including the extremes of weather; the coordination of, planning for and conduct of patrolling; the evacuation of casualties; the Chinese sense of humour in the line; the Chinese Army's tactics and equipment; his commanding officer's rebuff to the brigade commander's proposal for a 'blooding' operation for 1 RAR and the planning for a consequently agreed company attack (A Company) on the Chinese position on Hill 227 (Operation Blaze); his experience as a company commander in preparations for and conduct of Operation Fauna - a raid aimed at capturing prisoners and destroying enemy defences; his view of the combat effectiveness of the three British battalions of 28th Brigade; the characteristics of Canadian and Australian patrolling policies; his experience, as adjutant, in the raising of 1 RAR for service in Korea in 1951 compared with his experience as commanding officer in raising 7 RAR for Vietnam service in 1965. Smith also speaks briefly of his service in Malaya, 1961-1962, initially with 1 RAR, then with the relieving battalion, 2 RAR.