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Lindsay Westphal

Operation Patriot

Question

On occasions, I am asked to research the military history of a uncle, father or grandfather who served in war/s. One I was tasked to research a few years ago has left me with more questions than answers...

 

Brief Summary... About 3 years I was given the guys full name and birth date with the common surname of JONES as being a KIA from Australia in the Vietnam War.. The guy who asked me to research the history was the son of the lady who was the deceased sibling. He showed me letters sent from Vietnam from "JONES". The letters were not out of the ordinary to others I have seen sent back from the Vietnam war theater. I have no doubt the letters were genuine. I was also shown the letters of condolence from the Australian Government of his being killed in action. 

 

The interesting part.... Australia's honor roll shows no record of that person being KIA. I contacted the Australian Defence Department and there is no record of that person being in the military, let alone being killed in action. A contact I have in the upper ranks of the Australian Military accepted my request to see what he could find about this man... The response was brief, citing there were no records of this man. Then came the next paragraph.... "for your ongoing interest in military history, maybe you would be interested in researching "Operation Patriot"."

 

I think that was a clue.....

What I found was that "Operation Patriot" was founded in 1968, after a meeting in Laos and involves the join military cooperation of Australia, New Zealand, England, USA and Canada. Very interesting given that England and Canada were not officially in the Vietnam War. Operation Patriot was set up as a joint cooperative to exchange intell, and operate covert operations including non-military personnel. I learned that civilian tech experts operated radar in the mountains of Laos under Operation Patriot.

I learned also that this "Operation Patriot: agreement continues to operate more recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 

Anyone can point me in the right direction to learn more about Operation Patriot?

 

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On 5/9/2018 at 5:54 AM, Lindsay Westphal said:

On occasions, I am asked to research the military history of a uncle, father or grandfather who served in war/s. One I was tasked to research a few years ago has left me with more questions than answers...

 

Brief Summary... About 3 years I was given the guys full name and birth date with the common surname of JONES as being a KIA from Australia in the Vietnam War.. The guy who asked me to research the history was the son of the lady who was the deceased sibling. He showed me letters sent from Vietnam from "JONES". The letters were not out of the ordinary to others I have seen sent back from the Vietnam war theater. I have no doubt the letters were genuine. I was also shown the letters of condolence from the Australian Government of his being killed in action. 

 

The interesting part.... Australia's honor roll shows no record of that person being KIA. I contacted the Australian Defence Department and there is no record of that person being in the military, let alone being killed in action. A contact I have in the upper ranks of the Australian Military accepted my request to see what he could find about this man... The response was brief, citing there were no records of this man. Then came the next paragraph.... "for your ongoing interest in military history, maybe you would be interested in researching "Operation Patriot"."

 

I think that was a clue.....

What I found was that "Operation Patriot" was founded in 1968, after a meeting in Laos and involves the join military cooperation of Australia, New Zealand, England, USA and Canada. Very interesting given that England and Canada were not officially in the Vietnam War. Operation Patriot was set up as a joint cooperative to exchange intell, and operate covert operations including non-military personnel. I learned that civilian tech experts operated radar in the mountains of Laos under Operation Patriot.

I learned also that this "Operation Patriot: agreement continues to operate more recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 

Anyone can point me in the right direction to learn more about Operation Patriot?

 

Chances are that you won't. I recall how, back in the 1970's, when a large number of secret documents held by the public records office in Kew came to be declasified, revealing how the British (and Americans) had been routinely decrypting Germany's (assumed to be uncrackable) codes - and the stories revealed on the BBC - the parents of a good friend revealed to each other for the first time what they'd been doing during the war. My friends's mother had been a WREN at Bletchley - helping to decrypt German signals, his father had worked with D.F. Jones in the ongoing electronics battle against the Luftwaffe.Until it was made VERY obvious that it was no longer classified information, they told nobody - not even their spouses. I have two British friends who served in VietNam; one with the RAF (as a conscript in the VERY early 1960's) He spent his time there working on USAF planes (I suspect on avionics, from where his career went after de-mob) He was shipped over there, issued an unmarked uniform,which he wore without dogtags. Turing the "Tet" Offensive, he lost the tip of one finger when it got caught in a blast-door. The other friend served with an odd military formation, dating back to WW2, and called "Combined Operations"; what makes it "odd" is that it's neither an Army, Navy NOR Airforce unit; it's all three. Initially brought into existence to act as Forward Artillery Observers who could communicate with both artillerymen, sailers and flyers (who probably use different methodologies and indeed vocabularies. In the Royal Navy, the word "fire" is reserved to mean "conflagration". hence them saying "Ready, Aim, SHOOT", not "Ready, Aim, Fire" On wooden ships, fire is a major concern; you didn't shout "fire" to mean anything but "flames!") My chum from Combined Ops was attached to the New Zealand SAS as an observer, and spent some months on patrol in VietNam.
Both guys talked, guardedly, to me about their experiences... but without much detail. They know me and know my background, and they know that I'd be unlikely to share much in the way of detail with them either, even although they're both longstanding friends.

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On 5/9/2018 at 5:54 AM, Lindsay Westphal said:

On occasions, I am asked to research the military history of a uncle, father or grandfather who served in war/s. One I was tasked to research a few years ago has left me with more questions than answers...

 

Brief Summary... About 3 years I was given the guys full name and birth date with the common surname of JONES as being a KIA from Australia in the Vietnam War.. The guy who asked me to research the history was the son of the lady who was the deceased sibling. He showed me letters sent from Vietnam from "JONES". The letters were not out of the ordinary to others I have seen sent back from the Vietnam war theater. I have no doubt the letters were genuine. I was also shown the letters of condolence from the Australian Government of his being killed in action. 

 

The interesting part.... Australia's honor roll shows no record of that person being KIA. I contacted the Australian Defence Department and there is no record of that person being in the military, let alone being killed in action. A contact I have in the upper ranks of the Australian Military accepted my request to see what he could find about this man... The response was brief, citing there were no records of this man. Then came the next paragraph.... "for your ongoing interest in military history, maybe you would be interested in researching "Operation Patriot"."

 

I think that was a clue.....

What I found was that "Operation Patriot" was founded in 1968, after a meeting in Laos and involves the join military cooperation of Australia, New Zealand, England, USA and Canada. Very interesting given that England and Canada were not officially in the Vietnam War. Operation Patriot was set up as a joint cooperative to exchange intell, and operate covert operations including non-military personnel. I learned that civilian tech experts operated radar in the mountains of Laos under Operation Patriot.

I learned also that this "Operation Patriot: agreement continues to operate more recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 

Anyone can point me in the right direction to learn more about Operation Patriot?

 

Chances are that you won't. I recall how, back in the 1970's, when a large number of secret documents held by the public records office in Kew came to be declasified, revealing how the British (and Americans) had been routinely decrypting Germany's (assumed to be uncrackable) codes - and the stories revealed on the BBC - the parents of a good friend revealed to each other for the first time what they'd been doing during the war. My friends's mother had been a WREN at Bletchley - helping to decrypt German signals, his father had worked with D.F. Jones in the ongoing electronics battle against the Luftwaffe.Until it was made VERY obvious that it was no longer classified information, they told nobody - not even their spouses. I have two British friends who served in VietNam; one with the RAF (as a conscript in the VERY early 1960's) He spent his time there working on USAF planes (I suspect on avionics, from where his career went after de-mob) He was shipped over there, issued an unmarked uniform,which he wore without dogtags. Turing the "Tet" Offensive, he lost the tip of one finger when it got caught in a blast-door. The other friend served with an odd military formation, dating back to WW2, and called "Combined Operations"; what makes it "odd" is that it's neither an Army, Navy NOR Airforce unit; it's all three. Initially brought into existence to act as Forward Artillery Observers who could communicate with both artillerymen, sailers and flyers (who probably use different methodologies and indeed vocabularies. In the Royal Navy, the word "fire" is reserved to mean "conflagration". hence them saying "Ready, Aim, SHOOT", not "Ready, Aim, Fire" On wooden ships, fire is a major concern; you didn't shout "fire" to mean anything but "flames!") My chum from Combined Ops was attached to the New Zealand SAS as an observer, and spent some months on patrol in VietNam.

Both guys talked, guardedly, to me about their experiences... but without much detail. They know me and know my background, and they know that I'd be unlikely to share much in the way of detail with them either, even although they're both longstanding friends. "No Names, No Packdrill". And that's the way it OUGHT to be.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/11/2018 at 10:54 AM, Ron Walker said:

In the Royal Navy, the word "fire" is reserved to mean "conflagration". hence them saying "Ready, Aim, SHOOT", not "Ready, Aim, Fire" On wooden ships, fire is a major concern; you didn't shout "fire" to mean anything but "flames!"

Interesting take, but not exactly true.  RN, even USN, practice is to use the word "fire" to order the discharge of a weapon . . . goes back a few hundred years, indeed, to the age of wooden ships.  "Shoot" is something one tends to hear in movies.

Edited by R Leonard

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