“Do You Want To Do Things Or Watch Other People Do Them?”: A Life Of Service In The Australian Army

Roger J. Noble


MG Roger J. Noble volunteered for the Australian Army at 16 and attended the Royal Military College and Australian Defense Force Academy. Upon graduation, in 1987, he commissioned as an Officer in the Royal Australian Armoured Corps. Over the course of his career, he has deployed to Iraq three times, Afghanistan twice, and East Timor once. Currently, he is the Deputy Commanding General – North for US Army Pacific Command (USARPAC). In this interview, he talks about his childhood, attending the Australian Military Academy, and his service in the Australian Army. He describes his 1992 deployment to Iraq as a Team Leader in the Chemical Destruction Group as part of the United Nations Special Commission, commenting on Saddam’s police state and destroying chemical munitions. He discusses his 2001 to 2002 service in East Timor, and what he learned about interacting with a different culture. He reflects upon his assignment to CENTCOM immediately following September 11, 2001, and his subsequent service in Afghanistan. He describes his 2005 return to southern Iraq, where he commanded the Al Muthanna Task Group, as a “terrible year” because of the violence in the country, and his 2011 deployment to Afghanistan at the peak of the coalition as his “toughest assignment.” His 2016 return to Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division as the Deputy Coalition Land Force Commander was a true peer-to-peer assignment, and he discusses the improvement of the Iraqi Army as it took the lead fighting Isis. Finally, he talks about his current assignment as the Deputy Commanding General – North for US Army Pacific, and what his service means to him.


name Roger J. Noble
institution Australian Defense Force Academy & Royal Military College
graduation year 1987
service Royal Australian Armoured Corps
unit USARPAC (US Army Pacific) / Australian Army
service dates 1987