Colonel Michael Scott has completed his deployment to the Middle East on Operation Paladin, which began in July 2019.

Testing UN deployment ends

Mentoring and teaching the next generation of junior officers and enlisted personnel is Colonel Michael Scott’s passion, even when they come from a diverse range of countries.

A widely read military professional, Colonel Scott has just completed a two-year deployment on Operation Paladin, the ADF’s support to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organisation (UNTSO), which has outstations spread across the Middle East and Africa from Egypt to Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.

Based in Jerusalem, Israel, since July 2019, Colonel Scott initially served as the UNTSO deputy chief of staff.

From October 2019, Colonel Scott undertook higher duties as the chief of staff and head of military in the absence of a major general – a position that had previously only been held by an Australian twice.

“Australia has contributed hundreds of military observers to UNTSO – the UN’s oldest peacekeeping mission – under Operation Paladin since 1956,” Colonel Scott said.

“The ADF commitment to UNTSO assists the UN with implementing its various security council resolutions.”

Presently, UNTSO draws 153 military personnel from 27 different contributing countries, including those that, from an Australian perspective, are not traditional Defence partners.

“It has been a privilege and an honour to serve with professionals from nations such as Russia, China, Serbia, Argentina, India, the United States, Gambia and Bhutan, to name but a few,” Colonel Scott said.

“It has been my responsibility to establish and maintain an effective rapport with regional stakeholders, including senior officers from the Israeli Defence Force, the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Syrian Arab Armed Forces, as well as with the 27 UNTSO contributing countries and their embassies.

“As the Chief Military Observer on this mission, I have also been responsible for the training, supervision, operational performance and reporting of violations to the ceasefire agreements made by previous officers on this mission.”

Colonel Scott was certainly tested.

Read the article by Flight Lieutenant Clarice Hurren in Australian Defence News.