chapter  11
14 Pages

Losing Private Kovko: When Military Masculinity goes SNAFU

ByJackie Cook

On the 21 April 2006, Australian troops serving as part of George W. Bush’s ‘coalition of the willing’ in Iraq reported to their commanding officers the death, apparently by accident, of one of their number, inside their barracks in the Australian Embassy compound in Baghdad. Private Jake Kovko, having just completed a day’s service on guard duty on the roof of the embassy building, had been laughing and joking with two fellow soldiers in the small bunk-room they shared, when his gun discharged, killing him outright.