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The Vietnam War was Australias longest involvement in a major overseas conflict and its the most controversial It was the firs time national servicemen were sent to fight for their country It was a war that eventually caused great divisions in the nation A brief history of veitnam The roots of Australias involvement in Vietnam lie in the earlier Vietnam conflict of the 1950s The French ruled Indochina for about a century from 1860 to 1954 Ousted in the Second World War they then returned in 1946 to reassert their rule Opposition came from the viet minh create by Communist party founding member ho chi minh in 1945 based in north Vietnam In 1954 the Geneva accords were signed by france and Vietnam dividing Vietnam at the 17th parallel pending the outcome of national elections north Vietnam being ruled by communists and south Vietnam ruled by the republic of south Vietnam with ngo dinh diem as PM The second Indochina war or Vietnam war as some considered it began after the Vietnam communist party the north decided in 1959 to sanction greater reliance on military activity and to start invading south Vietnam Since the United States of America had bank rolled the French in earlier wars they then began to support the South Vietnamese The war The Australian commitment to the Vietnam War began in august 1962 and continued until December 1972 Australia was part of an allied force in Vietnam that included the USA Thailand New Zealand the Philippines and South Korea The decision by the Australian Liberal country party government in April 1965 to commit a battalion of troops in support of the American effort in the war and subsequent additions to that force in august 1965 March 1966 December 1966 and October 1967 dominated foreign policy debate in Australia for the rest of the decade Over 59000 personnel served in Vietnam these included
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