Oz soldiers design own recruitment ads

Nice touch: The latest round of Australian Army recruitment posters were designed by the grunts themselves. This one isn’t the winner, but it’s my personal fave.

Runner-up Army recruiting poster

Author John Birmingham provided the pointer, and amongst the various daft comments from his feral fan base there’s a gem, explaining how the ads reveal the current self-image of the typical Australian soldier.

These posters, if their creators are a representative cross section of the Australian Army, indicate the following:

a. A heightened level of pride in what they do and that what they do is right and proper
b. A strong belief that their role is to protect the weak and the helpless, both now and for future generations
c. A belief that their profession is a selfless one calling for people of the highest calibre
d. The feeling that soldiering is an honourable profession, one that carries the mantle of the generations that defeated the Kaiser’s army in the First World War, and defeated horror and tyranny in the Second

All in all, the if this is representative of the Australian Army in particular, and the ADF in general, Australians are a very fortunate people.

Hear hear.

For the record, here’s the winner, by Private David Eason of 8 Combat Services Support Battalion.

Winning army recruitment poster

Personally, I reckon it’s a bit too nostalgic… though your tastes may differ. My guess is The Powers That Be loved it in the lead-up to Anzac Day.

7 Replies to “Oz soldiers design own recruitment ads”

  1. I think the winning design is also quite ugly. That superimposed image clashes with its surroundings.

    And yes, we have to stop clinging to the Anzac myth like some overused security blanket.

  2. It’s a funny thing. While fully ok with honoring past soldiers, using nostalgia to encourage recruitment seems in poor taste (sometimes?). Paticularly given the differences between now and then. A lot of past diggers might recommend you don’t enlist in other peoples wars.

    That attribute list is great.

  3. Anything to counter the mainstream media’s portrayal of soldiers as a cross between the Waffen-SS and Forrest Gump!

  4. As for Stilgherrian’s comments about so much for role models — I would like to see how you fared as a 17 year old in WWI and how you would volunteer to go back to the front after the horrors you had seen and after being shot on THREE separate engagements — I think he was a hero simply for going back the second and third time — I do not know many 18 year olds with that amount of courage — do you?

  5. @Grunt: My point is that in an aggressive media landscape, anyone you choose to put on a poster and promote as a hero had better not have “negatives” in their story. Otherwise said aggressive media will go for the juicier story.

    In Katte/Caux’ case, purely from a PR and marketing perspective, the story “brave hero” — which I’ve never challenged — is trumped by the far juicier “liar, bigamist and deserter”. A shame, but that’s the reality of working in a world filled with tabloid media.

    Perhaps I should have said all that the first time, because my point was about the Army choosing badly solely from a PR perspective.

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