Ethical failures have occurred in Western militaries over the past few decades and in the twenty-first century they continue. In recent Australian Defence Force (ADF) experience some serious operational incidents have highlighted ethical problems. These have ranged from Operation Morris Dance off Fiji in 1987 where an infantry rifle company was ordered to load and unload their machine guns seven times in 24 hours as assessments were made as to how a heavily armed intervention might appear to Fijians; to Operation Lagoon in Bougainville in 1994 where the question asked was how ‘ethically sound is it for troops that have been deployed to establish a presence and create a deterrent to be permitted to shoot in protection of life and property?’ (Breen 2003, 2-7) The fact that the ADF has performed to a high ethical standard on recent operations can be attributed to the quality of leadership, training and a degree of luck. There have been only a handful of casualties on Australian operations since East Timor in 1999 and most of these have been training related incidents. A higher rate of casualties would change many perceptions and perhaps also raise the number and nature of ethical dilemmas encountered by Australian forces.