Author(s): Albert Palazzo
This is a guide to the war that Australia fought in Vietnam and provides the reader with a good overview of the events that unfolded over ten years.
From 1962 to 1972 Australia joined the United States in fighting a communist inspired insurgency war in the jungles of South Vietnam against infiltrators who sought to overthrow the local government. Over 50,000 Australians served in Vietnam, 519 lost their lives, and the conflict ended ignominiously in the insurgents’ victory.
Over 30 years later, Australia again finds itself joined with the United States in a struggle against an insurgency, this time in the deserts of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan.
Although now in the past, the Vietnam War resonates with lessons for the Australian Army as it strives to defeat not Communism but Terrorism. Australian Military Operations in Vietnam highlights some of the successes and failures of an earlier generation of officers for the benefit of today’s leaders.