2 RAR will be called 2 RAR (Amphib)

Following a recent CONTACT  article that suggested 2 RAR would ‘cease to exist as an infantry battalion’, new details have emerged.

In an article in ARMY newspaper today, the commanding officer of 2RAR referred repeatedly to his unit as 2 RAR (Amphib) and suggested the unit would be reduced to a headquarters and three sub-units.

While the politically correct describe the new structure as ‘leaner and more agile’, others have told CONTACT it will be about half the size of a regular infantry battalion.

The restructure will see 2 RAR focus on specialist amphibious skills, with what we think is an ‘ambitious’ aspiration to ‘still retain the ability to act as a conventional infantry battalion when required’ – while somehow, the reduced unit establishment would also ‘allow soldiers with amphibious experience to be shared across Army’.

One hint at how this might be achieved, however comes in the suggestion that “the transition is a great opportunity to harness the total force to integrate reservists and ex-serving ARA personnel”.

ARMY newspaper also introduced a “Plan Keogh” today, without explanation. CONTACT has never heard of Plan Keogh – and a search of both the Defence web site and Google failed to shed any enlightenment.

CO 2 RAR Lieutenant Colonel Doug Pashley told ARMY news it was an exciting time for 2 RAR, building on the amphibious trial and being given the opportunity to establish a world-class amphibious unit optimised for pre-landing force operations.

“Working as part of a joint team, 2 RAR (Amphib) will be the eyes and ears of Australia’s amphibious force, specialising in the use of small boats and the conduct of reconnaissance, surveillance and sniping in a littoral environment,” he said.

“They will be aiming to provide the landing force with a detailed understanding of the environment they are about to step into.

“2 RAR (Amphib) will be responsible for securing beach and helicopter landing sites in support of an amphibious landing, and will be key to enabling the landing force to come ashore and complete its mission.”

2 RAR will formally transition to Amphib on 15 October and the restructure will be marked by a parade on November 23 – the 69th anniversary of the Royal Australian Regiment.

Lieutenant Colonel Doug Pashley said they wanted to use the parade to recognise the change to 2 RAR but also to acknowledge the hard work and dedication that all ranks and all corps have made to develop Army’s amphibious capability.


  1. LtCol Russ Lowes (Retd) says

    Why is there a need to alter the ORBAT for this role. It detracts from having flexibility to adapt to other roles if/when required as has been a significant characteristic of the Australian Army.

  2. LtCol Russ Lowes (Retd) says

    PS former XO 2 RAR

Speak Your Mind