Australia's Involvement In The Vietnam War

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The Vietnam War was the longest conflict that Australians have been involved in. The Australians involvement in the Vietnam War lasted for 10 years (1962-1972) and involved approximately 60,000 personnel. The Vietnam War was fundamentally a component of the Cold War, a war based on ideologies of communism and capitalism. The Vietnam War had many long-term and short-term effects that impacted Australia socially, politically and economically. Socially through the change in attitudes, politically through foreign relations and economically through immigrants. An exploration and explanation of key events and political and social developments suggest that Australia was impacted by their involvement in the Vietnam War.

The Vietnam War impacted Australia
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Some of the soldiers remember being called baby killers, rapists and murderers when they returned from the combat . Many of these soldiers thought that they had generally fought with more humanity and professionalism than their American counterparts and took this as a bitter blow. As one Vietnam War commented, “We were given a job to do, and we did it. Right or wrong, we did our job.” This demonstrates that the soldiers were doing their job whether or not they believed it to be morally correct or not. Often the Vietnam veterans feel as though they are not respected like the veterans from World War I and II are. The Vietnam War did however positively affect Australian society in the role of women. The role of women had already been reshaping due to the World Wars and the Vietnam War help to enforce this reshaping. 43 nurses served as part of the Australian Army’s involvement in the Vietnam War between 1966 and 1972 , this figure does not include the number of nurses who were involved in the evacuation of casualties back to Australia. Out of the 521 Australians to die, one included an Australian nurse, …show more content…
One reason why Australia partook in the Vietnam War was because of The Australia, New Zealand, United States security Treaty (ANZUS Treaty). Australia wanted to show America that they valued the treaty and that they would stick up for America when and if they went to war, which they did. The relationship between Australia and Vietnam as a result of the Vietnam War is good. Australia sends aid to help support different projects that will help reduce the poverty in Vietnam; building bridges, roads and damns as well as creating better health care and worker training services . Before the Vietnam War there was a ‘White Australia Policy’ that was reinforced by Prime Minister John Curtin during World War II. He said, “This country shall remain forever the home of the descendants of those people who came here in peace in order to establish in the South Seas an outpost of the British race” . In 1973 the Whitlam Labor government took three steps to gradually remove race being a factor of the Australian immigration policies . This change in policies was not only a political change but also a social change. By 1977 multiculturalism was a firm government policy. The government gave funding and licences to foreign language radio stations and had started language schools for new immigrants. By the mid-1980s over 3 million of the Australian population (15 million) were born

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