Australia's Involvement In The Vietnam War

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Australia got involved in Vietnam in an attempt to stop the spread of communism in South Vietnam and protect is position in the Asian Pacific; this is a key event in Australia’s history as it changed the course of Australia’s allegiances and almost lead to warfare on Australian soil. Though relating cause and effect by using numerous historical sources I will assess the key reasons why Australia got involved in the Vietnam War. Robert Menzies parliament address in 1965, an article from The Conversation describing the events 50 years later as well as multiple extracts from “Contested Spaces” by Thomas Cantwell and key extracts from the History textbook all illustrate the main reasons why Australia was keen to get involved in the war in South …show more content…

American being a capitalist national and Russia being a communist nation, these two highly contrasting ideologies resulted in major aggression between the two countries resulting in a series of proxy wars across the world including Korea and Vietnam in a attempt to eradicate each other. Communism ideas began to become more prevalent in China during the 1950’s. China then began to support smaller countries in Indochina to become communist nations such as Korea and Vietnam; this was an early example of Australia using military action in order to defeat communism in the Asia pacific. The domino theory was a thesis put forward by America stating that if South Vietnam were to fall to communism, because of its geographical position the entire region would eventually convert to communism therefore communism had to be eliminated in South Vietnam to prevent the spread of communism in the Asia Pacific. Australia due to its allegiance with Europe became weaker overall after the war as Europe would be unable to support Australia in case of a mainland invasion as they needed to rebuild from the effects of war, this left Australia in search for a new powerful ally. America became the prime candidate, as they were a direct opposition to communism and had ideals that acutely aligned with Australia. This compelled Australia to …show more content…

The ANZUS treaty between Australia, New Zealand and United states allowed the 3 nations to co-operate military operations in the pacific ocean, this was significant for Australia as it placed America as its major ally and provided Australia with military support in case of invasion. As a result of ANZUS Australia had to commit forces to Vietnam to support the American troops, this was a major reason for Australia’s involvement in the war. The war started to look bleak in Vietnam and Menzies had the melancholy duty of announcing conscription in 1964, Menzies stated, “Communist aggression in Indochina directly threatens Australia’s security” he continued to say that conscription was required to rally enough soldiers to fight in Vietnam.
In all Australia ‘s main reason for involvement in the Vietnam War included; eradication of communism in Indochina and Indonesia, Ensuring Americas continued allegiance with Australia through means of militaristic support, to honour its SEATO and ANZUS commitments as well as Australia’s consecutive leaders during the Vietnam War era having strong distaste for communist ideals all played a major role for Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War. These facts have been supported through a plethora of sources derived from numerous non-bias outlets and outline Australia’s willingness to fight

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