Australian Soldiers in South Africa and Vietnam: Words from by Effie Karageorgos, Jeremy Black

By Effie Karageorgos, Jeremy Black

The South African and Vietnam Wars provoked dramatically assorted reactions in Australians, from pro-British jingoism at the eve of Federation, to the anti-war protest hobbies of the Nineteen Sixties. against this, the letters and diaries of Australian infantrymen written whereas at the South African and Vietnam battlefields demonstrate that their reactions to the warfare they have been struggling with have been unusually not like these at the domestic fronts from which they got here.

Australian infantrymen in South Africa and Vietnam follows those strive against males from enlistment to the battle entrance and analyses their phrases along theories of soldiering to illustrate the transformation of infantrymen as a reaction to advancements in army strategy, in addition to altering civilian opinion. during this means, the e-book illustrates the energy of a soldier's hyperlink to their domestic entrance lives.

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In early July 1899, a formal request was made to the Australian colonies for troops for military aid in South Africa, which led to intense debating among politicians. 6 This telegram was promptly forwarded to the premiers of all other Australian colonies. 7 Despite the desperation conveyed in this telegram, many opposed the prospect of sending men to fight for Britain once it became a reality in September, and the war itself declared on 11 October 1899, based on the war’s irrelevance to Australia and the unwarranted nature of the British claim to any ownership of the Boer states.

These groups claimed that their primary issue with the war was its questionable ethics against defenceless Boer civilians, while still proclaiming their loyalty to Australia and support for fighting soldiers. ’55 The Barrier Truth, of mining town Broken Hill, New South Wales, along with The Herald, were both frequently critical of the war, but would also honour and support soldiers, emphasizing their patriotism despite the accusations of treason frequently levelled against them for their opposition to the war.

In both cases, these reasons were questioned, and disproved, during and after the wars’ end. 79 Still more Australians took notice after the 29 April 1965 announcement that combat troops were to be sent to Vietnam, as well as the decision of March 1966 that many of those conscripted would eventually serve in Vietnam. During this period, ideas regarding Australia’s stance towards Asia and the emerging war in Vietnam came more prominently into public view – generated by supporters of the war, including parliamentarians, as well as opponents of Australian involvement.

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