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Back to the Future – Frightening

By John Hargreaves 12 September 2014 45


In the 1960s was a perceived threat to Australia from the “Yellow Peril” coming down the Indo-China peninsula.

We had seen the Korean War, the communist insurgents in Malaysia on the border with Thailand and the Vietnam War had just kicked off.

My father, the Air Force officer, was a strident anti-communist and whilst he didn’t talk much about wars and stuff, he made it clear that there was a real threat to Australia. He firmly believed in the forward defence philosophy to counter the Domino Theory whereby the communists were taking over the countries in Asia one by one on their way here. We had to stop that advance before it got here.

By the time I was 19, the Vietnam War was in full swing and national service was on. My number didn’t come up but, believing in my father’s vehemence and patriotism, I volunteered to go in to the Army for two years to “do my bit”.

History later proved the war was wrong, the military philosophy was wrong and the politics were wrong. So too was I and I had sacrificed two years of my life for something that was wrong.

Don’t misunderstand me though. My respect and affection for Vietnam vets is unlimited. They were pawns as I was.
You’d reckon we’d learn something from this mistake, wouldn’t you? Nuh!

The first thing Australia did in the Vietnam War was to send in “training teams” to help the South Vietnamese Army defend themselves. Keith Payne VC is the most famous of those trainers. It was called the AATTV – the Australian Army Training Team Vietnam.

What is our PM doing now? Sending training teams to the Middle East as well as Air Force assistance with humanitarian drops and arms drops to the side we support.

It is the thin edge of the wedge. Next will be a squadron of SAS soldiers who are operational, not trainers. Then it will be a battalion. Then the body bag count will start.

I spent 40 years in guilt over my “bit” in the Vietnam War era and I don’t want that to happen again. I don’t want our kids being used as political pawns in a conflict which can only end in more lives being lost and our own security here being compromised.

This issue is not funny anymore. It is scary and we should not be anywhere near it.

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Back to the Future – Frightening
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dungfungus 2:16 pm 16 Sep 14

Scribble said :

If you want to stop heads rolling around the desert, talk to the Saudis:

Two points.
The Saudis are not executing their criminals in the desert. They are very public. This is the way it has been for a thousand years. Amnesty claim there has been a surge in beheadings but the report indicated clearly that this is a response to multiple arrests of drug dealers.
Secondly, the people being beheaded are criminals, not captured foreign journalists or soldiers.
BTW, I haven’t seen Amnesty protesting outside the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Yarralumla so do they really care?.

dungfungus 2:05 pm 16 Sep 14

miz said :

Atrocities are committed every day somewhere in the world. We don’t have to put troops on the ground to ‘prove’ we don’t support such atrocities.

Well, the statements and “actions” by the UN haven’t been spectacularly successful, have they.
And when the enemy knock down your front door don’t expect any concessions because you were not opposing their cause.

miz 1:26 pm 16 Sep 14

Atrocities are committed every day somewhere in the world. We don’t have to put troops on the ground to ‘prove’ we don’t support such atrocities.

dungfungus 9:23 am 16 Sep 14

miz said :

I disagree with those who assert ‘we are already involved’. No, we are not – we do not have a common border, we are not in fact anywhere within cooee of Syria. We can keep our own country safe without going anywhere. We could go so far as providing humanitarian support if there was a need (we could do the same for, eg, the ‘holocaust’ (Kirby’s word) going on in N Korea right now, though of course there is no oil there…)
But to my mind there is absolutely no justification for military intervention whatsoever in the ISIS conflict. And I chucked in N Korea simply to point out the hypocrisy of the present policy makers. Similarly I don’t see Australia offering to put people on the ground in Ukraine or Gaza. They are simply not our business.

How many more severed heads do you want to see rolling in the desert to convince you otherwise?

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