The RCBRG thanks the Minister for initiating the current inquiry by DHAAT into the service of Rifle Company Butterworth 1970-1989.
For many years the Department of Defence have been holding up previous, flawed, reviews as a reason that a new inquiry into RCB service was unnecessary.
Included in those flawed reviews was the previous New Zealand 2012 review that was overturned last year by the New Zealand Government’s decision on their RCB service and which has been a factor leading Minister Gee to call for this new review of Australia’s RCB service.
We are grateful to the Minister for taking his time to seriously consider this matter rather than simply referring it back to Defence as so many of his predecessors have done.
As we know from experience, Defence never consider that anything they have done in the past is wrong. We now know that their reliance on the previous New Zealand findings was wrong.
It is our belief that, provided with the evidence that RCBRG has at its disposal and the eyewitness evidence of RCB veterans, the DHAAT will see through Defence’s errors to the core of the truth – that RCB was deployed, not for training, but to provide for the defence of Air Base Butterworth during the resurgence of the Malaysian Communist Insurgency (1968-1989).
RCB Service 1979
Chairman RCB Review Group
Date: 12 April 2022