Opposition or Supporters of the Vietnam War

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  • Topic: Harold Holt, Liberal Party of Australia, Conscription
  • Pages : 1 (358 words )
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  • Published : May 25, 2013
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Australia grew more divided between the anti-war movement and government supporters. Australia’s anti-war movement was strongly connected to protests against conscription, or ‘National Service’ as it was called. The conscription lasted for 42 years. 1950,
Prime Minister Menzies introduced a limited form of conscription requiring three months of full-
time training and home service. This system was abandoned in 1958. 6 Years later Menzies introduced a Bill in Parliament that became one of the most divisive pieces of legislation an Australian government ever made. In 1964, legislation reintroduced conscription for males reaching their 20th birthday. A month of the year was chosen from the barrel (AKA drafted), and if birthday was in that month, then they would have approximately a one in ten chance of being selected, and had to serve for a period of two years. In 1966, Prime Minister Harold Holt announced
that conscripts would be sent to fight in Vietnam.
This was the first time conscripts had been sent to fight overseas during peacetime. In May 1966, the
first conscripted soldier was killed in action. He was Private Errol Wayne Noack and he was 21 years of age. Early protests against conscription had come from religious groups and members
of the Australian Communist Party. Conscription soon became a focus of the anti-war movement, with protest organizations urging men not to register and to resist the ‘draft’ (the lottery of death). People who refused to be conscripted were a two-year jail sentence. During the Vietnam War, many people protests against the continuation of the conflict. Youth Against Conscription and Save Our Sons were formed in 1964. Protest became more extreme and widespread after the 1966 election and the return of the Liberal Party/Country Party coalition government. Labor (Against conscriptions). Liberal (for conscription).

‘Mum!! Where did you spring from?!’
‘Mum!! Where did you spring from?!’
In 1971, five SOS women were sent to Fairlea...
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