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soldiersIroquois HelicoptersRoyal Australian Air Force (RAAF)
To most Australians who served in Vietnam the RAAF (Royal Australian Air Force) presence was exemplified by the Iroquois helicopter. Regarded as emblematic of the conflict, the Iroquois, an image of which appears on the Australian Vietnam Forces National Memorial on Canberra's Anzac Parade, played a vital role in carrying men to and from operations, transporting supplies and, importantly, getting the wounded from the field to a hospital in time to save the lives of many who would otherwise have perished. The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) began its involvement in the war in 1964 when a flight of Caribous began flying transport operations around South Vietnam. The following year RAAF helicopters began operations and in 1967 a squadron of Canberra bombers arrived in the country. Other RAAF personnel performed a variety of roles in Vietnam, from aeromedical evacuations to airfield construction and combat flying with United States forces. '3 Squadrons in Vietnam Air Operations' By 1967 three RAAF Squadrons were flying very different kinds of operations in Vietnam. For No. 9 Squadron's helicopter crews day-to-day operational life meant close work with the infantry and dangerous flights in support of ground operations. No. 2 Squadron's aircrew flew high above the war, bombing remote targets as part of a United States Air Force wing, while Caribou crews of No. 35 Squadron flew supply runs throughout South Vietnam risking life and limb landing on barely maintained airstrips at nondescript jungle outposts in support of special forces units.
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Original version: Collection with various creators donated by Bernie Weisz; Archival digital version: SLCC Digital Archives. CREATIVE COMMONS Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License.
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