Australia's Involvement in the Vietnam War

  • 30 Army Advisors

    30 Army Advisors
    The Minister for Defence (Reginald Townley) announces intention to send 30 army advisers to South Vietnam (SVN).
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    Australia's Involvement in the Vietnam War

    Brief timeline of Australia's Involvement in the Vietnam War
  • First members of AATTV arrive in Vietnam

    First members of AATTV arrive in Vietnam
    The first members of the Australian Army Training Team Vietnam (AATTV) arrive in South Vietnam.
  • Sergeant William Hacking dies

    Sergeant William Hacking dies
    Military Advisor Sergeant William Hacking becomes the first Australia to die when his weapon acccidently discharges after being caught in vegetation.
  • Increase of AATTV advisers to 83

    Increase of AATTV advisers to 83
    Minister for Defence Hon. Shane Partridge announces that the Australian Army Training Team Vietnam (AATTV) will be increased to 83 advisers and their role will be expanded.
  • First Australian to die as a result of enemy action

    First Australian to die as a result of enemy action
    Warrant Officer Class 2 Kevin Conway, a military advisor, becomes the first Australian to be killed in action as a casualty of the war.
  • Selective conscription is introduced

    Selective conscription is introduced
    Sir Robert Menzies announces the introduction of selective conscription towards 20-year old males to serve in the army and increase their numbers to 37500 from 22750. An opposing view of the war will not be accepted as an excuse to be exempted from the conscription.
  • Australian Governments response from the US and South Vietnam

    Australian Governments response from the US and South Vietnam
    Australian Government responds to the requests from the US President and South Vietnam Prime Minister for 200 more military advisers from Australia, by offering to send ground troops to South Vietnam.
  • Dispatch of infantry battalion

    Dispatch of infantry battalion
    The Prime Minister announces the dispatch of an infantry battalion to South Vietnam, escorted by a personnel carrier (APC) troop, a signals troop and a logistic support company.
  • Depart of the 1RAR

    Depart of the 1RAR
    The 1st Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment leaves for South Vietnam on the HMAS Sydney, alongside with the US 173rd Airborne Division.
  • Arrival of HMAS Sydney

    Arrival of HMAS Sydney
    The HMAS Sydney arrives, at Vung Tau in South Vietnam. They become the backbone of the Australian force.
  • Battle of Gang Toi

    Battle of Gang Toi
    1RAR fights the first engagements of the war between Australian forces and the Vietcong ay Gang Toi, thus becoming the Battle of Gang Toi.
  • WO2 Kevin Wheatley dies defending a comrade

    WO2 Kevin Wheatley dies defending a comrade
    Warrant Officer Class Two, Kevin Wheatley, dies while protecting a wounded comrade. This earned him Australia's hightest honour, the Victorian Cross
  • Battle of Ho the Bo Woods

    Battle of Ho the Bo Woods
    1RAR participates in the Battle of Ho Bo Woods alongside the US 1st Infantry Division. The aim was to target an underground Viet Cong headquarters.
  • 1RAR involved in the Battle of Suoi Bong Trang

    1RAR involved in the Battle of Suoi Bong Trang
    1RAR fought off a night time regiment size Viet Cong assault with the US 1st Infantry Division, with the use of mass firepower from artillery and tanks. 1RAR also provided protection to US engineers building a tactically important road in Tan Bihn.
  • 'All the way with LBJ'

    'All the way with LBJ'
    The Prime Minister Harold Holt travels to the United States to discuss the war with the US President Lyndon B. Johnson, and confirms the Australian's government full support for the United States Vietnam policy, and adopts the slogan with a speech "All the way with LBJ".
  • Battle of Long Tan

    Battle of Long Tan
    An Australian decisive victory between fought by the D Company of the 6th Battalion, Royal Army Regiment (6RAR) and Viet Cong forces. 18 Australians and 275 Viet Cong were killed.
  • Major Peter Badcoe

    Major Peter Badcoe
    Major Peter Badcoe of the AATTV is killed in action by leading his two companies against more powerful opposition. He is rewarded the Victorian Cross for his bravery.
  • Battle of Suoi Chau Pha

    Battle of Suoi Chau Pha
    Fought between 7RAR and Viet Cong troops. Took place during a search and destroy operation, in the eastern Hat Ditch area. Australian casualties included 6 killed and 19 wounded.
  • Increase of 1700

    Increase of 1700
    The Prime Minister announces and increase of 1700 to Australia's commitment in South Vietnam, including a third infantry battalion and tank squadron.
  • Tet Offensive

    Tet Offensive
    Communist forces in South Vietnam are launched, known as Tet Offensive, to attack military and civilian command and control centres when least expected.
  • John Gorton's announcement

    John Gorton's announcement
    Prime Minister Gorton announces that Australia will not increase its commitment to Vietnam.
  • Battle of Coral & Balmoral

    Battle of Coral & Balmoral
    Series of actions fought between the 1st Australian Task force (1ATF) and 7th Division of Viet Cong forces. It became the bloodiest engagement for Australians are 25 Australians were killed and nearly 100 wounded during the 26 days of fighting.
  • Rayene Stewart Simpson

    Rayene Stewart Simpson
    Warrant Officer Class Two, Rayene Stewart Simpson rescues a fellow warrant officer and commits an unsuccessful attack on a stronger opposition, in the Kom Tum Province. 5 days later, he fights alone against heavy odds to cover the evacuation of a number of casualties. He awarded with the Victorian Cross.
  • Battle of Binh Ba

    Battle of Binh Ba
    5RAR fought a combined force of North Vietnamese Army (NVA) and Viet Cong. 5RAR, supported by an APC and Australian helicopter gunships, engage in house-to-house fighting to clear a town of NVA regulars.
  • Anti-Vietnam War protests

    Anti-Vietnam War protests
    Anti-Vietnam War protesters stage the first moratorium marches in Australian cities (70,000 in Melbourne, and about 120,000 throughout Australia).
  • Battle of Long Khanh

    Battle of Long Khanh
    Fought between the 1st Australian Task Force (1ATF) and NVA and Viet Cong. The 3RAR provided a supporting attack on a heavily fortified communist base camp, capturing 2 bunker systems but at the cost of many casualties.
  • Prime Minister Mcmahon

    Prime Minister Mcmahon
    Prime Minister McMahon announces further cuts in Australian forces in South Vietnam, including withdrawal of the tank squadron, RAAF Canberra bomber squadron and some Caribou transport aircraft.
  • Battle of Nui Le

    Battle of Nui Le
    Last major battle by Australian troops in South Vietnam. Battle was fought between the 4RAR/NZ and 33rd Regiment of NVA. Left 5 Australians killed and 30 wounded.
  • Withdrawal of 4RAR

    Withdrawal of 4RAR
    4 RAR moves out of Nui Dat to Vung Tau, ending Australian combat operations in Phuoc Tuy province.
  • Final withdrawal of Australian forces

    Final withdrawal of Australian forces
    Whitlam Labor Government is elected, and Australia begins to finalise the withdrawal of its forces from Vietnam.