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Howitzers used in Vietnam to be preserved



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THE HON. JASON CLARE MP MINISTER FOR DEFENCE MATERIEL

4 April 2012

HOWITZERS USED IN VIETNAM TO BE PRESERVED

Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare today announced that 38 howitzer guns will be preserved at RSLs and historical organisations around Australia.

RSL organisations, Vietnam Veterans Associations and historical organisations were exclusively offered the opportunity to tender for the Howitzers in August 2011 through a Request for Offer (RFO).

“The M2A2 Howitzer Gun has provided outstanding service to Australia for more than 40 years. By providing them for static display we will preserve this important part of our military history,” Mr Clare said.

“The Howitzers have been a vital component of Australia‟s arsenal. They were critical in providing close artillery fire support to the Australian Army in Vietnam.

“During the six years they were used in Vietnam, M2A2 Howitzers fired thousands of 105mm rounds.

“This important part of Australia‟s military history will now be preserved in 38 RSLs and historical organisations across the country.”

The M2A2 Howitzers were procured from 1959, before being introduced into service in Vietnam in 1967 to supplement the existing L5 „pack‟ Howitzers in use during that conflict.

The Howitzer can be towed by truck, lifted by helicopter or moved manually for short distances.

The gun has not deployed on operations since Vietnam but remained in service.

Approved recipients will pay for demilitarisation and other costs, such as transport and site preparation, and will need to be approved by United States Government under its International Traffic in Arms Regulations.

Delivery and display of the howitzers also remains subject to any relevant state firearms and planning approvals.

Imagery of the M2A2 Howitzer Guns is available at: http://www.defence.gov.au/opEx/exercises/ts11/index.htm

The successful organisations are:

 Armadale RSL Sub Branch and Club Inc  Bordertown RSL Sub Branch  Broadford RSL Sub-Branch  Burnett War Memorial Museum Association Inc  City of Joondalup  City of Palmerston Council  Dandenong-Cranbourne RSL Sub-Branch Inc  Diamantina Shire Council  Edenhope RSL Sub-Branch Inc  Fort Lytton Historical Association Incorporated  Ingleburn RSL Sub Branch Co-op Club Ltd  Maryborough Military And Colonial Museum  Military Vehicule Preservation Society of South Australia Inc  Milne Bay Military Museum Inc  Mt Evelyn RSL Sub Branch  Muswellbrook RSL Sub Branch  National Servicemen's Association of Australia Qld Inc  National Vietnam Veterans Museum Ltd  Northhampton RSL  Oberon RSL Sub Branch  Philip Island RSL Sub Branch Inc  Returned and Services League Bute S/B Inc  Returned and Services League of Australia Port Augusta Sub Branch  Returned and Services League of Australia Qld Branch Cairns Sub Branch  Robinvale Sub Branch Returned and Service League  Royal Australian Artillery Association NT Inc T/A Darwin Military Museum  RSL Life Care  RSL Roma Sub Branch  Salisbury RSL Sub Branch Inc  Seymour Returned and Services League Sub Branch Inc

 Shoalhaven National Servicemen's Association NSW  South Australian Bush Artillery  St Helens St Marys RSL Sub Branch Inc  Taree RSL Sub Branch  The Returned and Services League of Australia (Tea Gardens)  Upwey/Belgrave RSL Sub-Branch Inc  West Wyalong RSL  Wollondilly RSL Sub Branch.

Media contacts:

Korena Flanagan (Office of Jason Clare) - 0418 251 316