Posted by Andy on Friday, September 11, 2009 at 7:02pm.
This is my history essay (well.. a speech) due in 5 days. Please correct any mistakes or awkward phrases ASAP. Thank You
Good morning/afternoon Mr Bean and fellow classmates. Australia, as a country, has a short, yet explicit history since the arrival of European settlers. In this short period of time, this young nation had to undergo numerous conflicts and wars which involved both civil and international strife. These troublesome events, in a way, changed and shaped this country to be what it is today. Many would agree, however, that our involvement in the Vietnam War during the mid-20th century brought significant influence on both the people and the nation, as a whole. Although there were clash of two different views on this particular war, its overall outcome and the process contributed its part to change Australians¡¯ distinctive perspective.
The Vietnam War, which started in 1954 and ended in 1975, was a civil war between the North led by the communist leader, Ho Chi Minh and the South, who sought democracy. Australia joined the war in 1962 along with other nations to fight for the South.
The question is; why did we decide to join the war which we didn¡¯t have to be involved? First of all, it was crucial for Australia as well as other nations to stop the spread of communism throughout the world. Countries such as the United States and New Zealand had same opinion on communist forces, moving their way up to seize power around the globe. With China and North Korea supporting the North, Australia had to help the South in order to stem the spread of communism in Europe, Asia, and ultimately, our own country.
In contrast, some argue that Australia joining the brutal war was to keep up with the policies and treaties of other nations, especially with the United States. Australia became part of two international defence agreements, ANZUS and SEATO in the 1950s, which committed Australia to help other member countries if they were attacked, in this case, South Vietnam. Moreover, as the United States joined the war, the Australian government had no choice but to enter the war as the Americans had more power than Australia. Whether it was our own decision to protect the world or we being dragged into the war, our involvement in the Vietnam War led to the significant impact on the people, communities and the nation.
The Vietnam War in fact, did not have much impact on Australia as a whole, but rather, on Australian individuals such as families, communities and social groups. Families and friends of young men who fought for their country were the ones who suffered the most because of the war. These young soldiers experiencing horrendous and violent battle grounds changed both physically and mentally, which disrupted one¡¯s family relationship. For Example of Ann Kidney and her husband, Bruce, who was conscripted to Vietnam, shows the destruction of family life and their future as a result of the war. Furthermore, soldiers who proudly fought the war risking their own lives weren¡¯t treated as a war hero, but rather, received a bitter homecoming. They were only used as an excuse for the protesters to continue their protests and often were accused of killing innocent Vietnamese civilians. The Vietnam War seemed to bring nothing but misery for those people who expected a warm welcome from their home nation.
On the other hand, organizations, social groups, and even Australia itself managed to learn valuable assets through undergoing the war. Young Australians learned how to express their opinions against traditional loyalties as well as protesting against authority of any kind. This changed people to think and understand about what is happening in Australia, and acting if necessary in certain circumstances. In addition, the Vietnam War left Australian government groping for an international role ever since. Fighting along with other countries gave us hope and confidence which became the starting point of our position to a global standard. Compare to the negative impact the war brought us; Australia successfully covered its downfalls with other positive values.
Despite the fact that Vietnam War changed Australia in numerous ways, people had different perspectives towards our participation in the war, most of them opposing the decision. People thought the government¡¯s decision to enter the war was unnecessary and a reckless decision which this nation may live to regret. There was a strong wave of antagonism from young Australian men, who believed that being forced to risk their lives and fight in the war would be morally wrong and unjust.
On the bright side, some people had positive beliefs, or rather, who accepted the inevitable decision. For our nation to proliferate and to keep close relationship with other countries, some believed that there was no alternative but to respond as we have. Not only that, some thought that it was a right thing to fight for your country, though, most of them weren¡¯t patriotic enough to fight in the war themselves. Regardless of different perspectives, there is no doubt that the Vietnam War did influence Australia in numerous ways.
Our involvement in the Vietnam War was the longest in duration of any war in Australia¡¯s history. As the quote clearly outlines, the reason why we had to enter this war was because of the social and political dissent in our own country. This however, happened to be very fortunate for this nation, as it changed us to be who we are today. Therefore, Australia¡¯s participation in the Vietnam War was, and will be remembered as an event which had significant influence on our people and this country all together.
10th grade English - bobpursley, Friday, September 11, 2009 at 7:59pm
I think it is fine. However, I wonder if you really meant on looking at the things that shaped Australia, you achived the balance you want. YOu have here almost 95 percent the Vietnam experience, but is that really contribute to 95 percent of what changed and shaped Australia today? From my experience (I am from Texas, in USA), Australia seemed very shaped by being a young country and being largely self-reliant.
But you decide. As it is, your speech is fine, but think on the balance issue. A lot of us were changed by Vietnam, I had nighmares for several years after it. They are not hard to forget.
8th grade History - Rosalie, Wednesday, September 16, 2009 at 4:57pm
this is really good, well I don't have much to say since im in eight grade , but from what I see,this is really good.
you added alot of detail.
10th grade English - jesca, Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 7:52am
the day i will never forget
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