This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Australia And The Vietnam War Essay

4074 words - 16 pages

AUSTRALIA AND VIETNAMOn the 29th of April 1965, Australia Prime Minister Menzies formally announced Australia's participation in the Vietnam War and explained it in the following terms:The takeover of South Vietnam would be a direct military threat to Australia and all the countries of South and Southeast Asia. It must be seen as part of a trust by Communist China between the India and Pacific Oceans.Furthermore, Menzies highlighted that Australia's commitment was a direct response to the request of South Vietnam Government. Although, Menzies took trouble to emphasize the independence of Australia's decision and commitment, he flourished President's Johnson's letter of appreciation rather ostentatiously. But, political statements being political contain only shades of truth.Since then historians have debated on factors leading to Australia's involvement. Peter Edwards views the Vietnam commitment as a 'culmination of twenty years of Australian involvement in Southeast Asia.' As such, he feels that the Indonesia Confrontation had sizeable ramifications on Australia's Vietnam decision. While other historians certainly do not discount Australia's long involvement with Southeast Asia and its associated effects, Glen St J. Barclay gives a new twist to the question in suggesting that Australia's commitment might have momentous effect on the American decision. Gregory Pemberton disagrees because he feels that 'Australia's support was not the decisive factor...but it was an important reassurance.' Nevertheless, Pemberton dismisses Australia's contribution as 'nothing more than political hyperbole.'Suffice to say, most historians'concerns can be summarized into the following questions. How important were long term factors (Australia's experiences with Southeast Asia) as opposed to immediate factors (the urgency in gaining political clout with United States)? Next, how viable were concepts such as 'insurance policy' and 'mighty friends' in explaining Australia's foreign policy? Finally, why were dogmatic arguments such as the 'domino theory' waved as the proverbial bloody shirt? Therefore, it is the purpose of this paper to explore the genesis of Australia's involvement in Vietnam and to assess the relative merits of the above arguments.Australia's strategic outlookThe process of historical events certainly heightened Australia's concern over the Southeast Asia. Darwin was bombed by the Japanese during WWII and the hordes of PLA soldiers swarming over Korea in the 50s lent credibility to the myth of the yellow peril. Communism was perceived as riding on the Asian wave that could lap on Australia's shores. Two pragmatic initiatives emerged to address these fears; one was the ANZUS treaty (1951) and the other was the SEATO(1954). However, it was the relative failure of these two alliances, which Australia attached so much importance to that led to Australia's active change of stance.That the ANZUS, as the foundation stone of Australia strategic outlook,...

Find Another Essay On Australia and the Vietnam war

Australian Vietnam War. A story about an asian fighting in the vietnam war for Australia. the struggles and hardships encountered. Accurate information about vietnam war

1182 words - 5 pages )-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------You'd think it would be strange for a person with an asian background to be fighting for Australia. I always wanted to fit in with the Australians. Coming here on a boat was hard enough, but trying to fit in with the white community was the hardest. During my teenage years, I experienced hardships. This was because of my bad english and the way I looked. It was when i was 22 when people were looking for soldiers to fight in

Australia in the Vietnam War (1965-1972) “There was overwhelming support for Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War (1965 to 1972).” Why did Australia become involved in the war? What were the...

1884 words - 8 pages Australia in the Vietnam War (1965-1972)Throughout history, war has always been regarded as a very significant issue and event, and has proved itself to be exactly such. Not only does it affect the countries directly involved, but it has a widespread impact on countries worldwide, influencing social, political and economical aspects of each nation. This leads to division within society, which can be seen in many areas and aspects of a country

Essay on the statement "That Australia should never have been involved in the Vietnam War."

982 words - 4 pages The controversial Vietnam War had a huge impact on Australian society in the 1960s and 1970s. Did Australia have to go there? Did we really have to invade a country that wasn't at war with us? The topic of Vietnam is very controversial because there is no real right side. Because we did go we stopped communism, but communism may have never reached our shores if didn't go. The war was unlike any other. But did we have to do it to save our way of

Looking back on hindsight, was it necessary for Australia to be involved in the Vietnam War?

1046 words - 4 pages Hindsight refers to the understanding of what should have been done in an event when looking back at it in the future. Vietnam War occurred in 1962, it was a war between North Vietnam and South Vietnam – the Capitalists and The Communists. Australia took part in this war, and it is known to be the longest war Australia was ever involved in. In 1954, Vietnam was divided at the 17th Parallel, this caused hatred against the north and the south

The Vietnam War and Iraq

1261 words - 5 pages During the Vietnam War, between 1955 and 1984, fifty-eight thousand Americans lost their lives, as well as over three-million Vietnamese lost theirs. The financial cost to the United States comes to over one hundred-fifty-billion dollars. The causes of the Vietnam War were derived from the symptoms, components and consequences of the Cold War. The Vietnam War revolved around America’s belief that communism was a threat to expand all over South

Johnson and the Vietnam War

946 words - 4 pages Johnson and the Vietnam War He was determined that he would not be held responsible for allowing Vietnam to fall to the Communists. Johnson believed that the key to success in the war in South Vietnam was to frighten North Vietnam's leaders with the possibility of full-scale U.S. military intervention. In January 1964 he approved top-secret, covert attacks against North Vietnamese territory, including commando raids against bridges

The Vietnam War and Vietnam's War History

1012 words - 4 pages World War 2 the French decided that they wanted Indochina back. They did not have enough power though at the time, so they decided to look for help from other countries, such as Britain. Their attempt at retaking Vietnam was an utter failure, and the French retreated from Vietnam following their defeat at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu. Ngo Dinh Diem was the Premier of South Vietnam beginning in 1954. He was an anti communist, and had his own very

The Vietnam Conflict The Vietnam War was a long and

3733 words - 15 pages The Vietnam Conflict The Vietnam War was a long and frustrating experience for the American people. Even before the United States involvement began, North and South Vietnam were in conflict with each other. ?When Vietnam was divided in 1954, many Viet Minh who had been born in the southern part of the country returned to their native villages to await the 1956 elections and the reunification of their nation?(Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 99

The Vietnam War: Affects on America and Vietnam

2426 words - 10 pages "No 'healing', no apologies, no memorials, nothing can possibly compensate for the damage done and the pain inflicted....The only thing we can possibly do, twenty years too late, is to try and tell the truth."Eric Bergerud, Historian UC BerkelyThe problem is though, that there is no one truth about the Vietnam War, even more than two decades after America's intervention. Critics of the intervention claim that the war was unnecessary and immoral

The Vietnam War and Agent Orange

1571 words - 6 pages road’s, the Soviet Union also supplied North Vietnam with medical supplies, arms, tanks, planes, helicopters, artillery, anti-aircraft missiles as well as giving them 3,000 troops. South Korea helped South Vietnam by sending around 320,000 troops to help them, Australia also sent troops to fight for the Americans, and however they only sent about 7,500 troops. The war was significant internationally because so many different countries were

The Vietnam War: Misunderstood and Forgotten

775 words - 4 pages President Richard Nixon once said "No event in America history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam war. Was misreported then it is misremembered now" (Nixon). The Vietnam War was one the longest wars in the world. It starred around 1940's When Ho Chi Minh raised to power. The war didn't just affect Vietnam, it effected the whole world. The United States joined the war around 1960's and ended in 1975. Both the Vietnam War and play Macbeth

Similar Essays

Australia In The Vietnam War Essay

1583 words - 6 pages Australia first became a part of the Vietnam War effort in July 1962, when we sent over the Australian Army Training Team Vietnam (AATTV). Our involvement in the war can ultimately be contributed to two major points, which are the our alliance with the United States as well as the fear of communism reaching Australia and seizing control of our nation. The Introduction of the “National Service Scheme” (Conscription) In 1964 caused a major uproar

Why Did Australia Join The Vietnam War?

424 words - 2 pages Australia joined the Vietnam war for many reasons. The major reason was Robert Menzies, the Prime Minister at the time, fear of communism and that the "domino theory" would come into effect (communism would keep heading south towards Australia) He tried to combat this through containment and forward defense. Another reason Australia joined the Vietnam war was Australia also joined the Vietnam to honour its treaties and show its support to the US

Impact Of The Vietnam War On Australia

1008 words - 4 pages Social, Economic and Political Effects of the War.The controversial Vietnam War had a huge impact on Australian society in the 1960's/1970's. It affected all aspects of society, such as the social, economic and political issues. Vietnam was known as a 'TV War'. A lot of violent and gruesome footage of the war was broadcasted right into people's homes. People felt the need to report their own opinions and a very biased view of the war, they were

Australia In The Vietnam War Era

717 words - 3 pages , Thailand, Pakistan and the Philippines. The major idea of this organisation was to prevent communism from gaining around the region. As a result of SEATO and ANZUS, Australia involved in Malaya from 1955 to 1962, assisting the British in suppressing a communist rebellion. During the time, SEATO had many activities in the South - East region. Additionally, SEATO had number of weakness. In 1970s, members of the organisation started to withdrew because most of the countries didn’t help each other. When the Vietnam War ended (1975), some of the biggest countries left the organisation. Finally, SEATO was officially disbanded in 1977.