State Library of South Australia logo Timeline
SA Memory. South Australia past and present, for the future

Call-up leaflet angers
Title : Call-up leaflet angers Call-up leaflet angers
Add To My SA Memory
Source : Sunday mail, 22 June 1968
Date of creation : 1968
Format : Newspaper
Contributor : State Library catalogue
Catalogue record
The State Library of South Australia is keen to find out more about SA Memory items. We encourage you to contact the Library if you have additional information about any of these items.
Copyright : This item is reproduced courtesy of Advertiser Newspapers Pty Ltd. It may be printed or saved for research or study. Use for any other purpose requires written permission from Advertiser Newspapers Pty Ltd and the State Library of South Australia. To request approval, complete the Permission to publish form.
Description :

Sunday mail banner, advertising the headline 'Call-up leaflet angers'.

From 1954 communist North Vietnam was at war with South Vietnam. In the 1960s hundreds of thousands of US troops were involved in support of South Vietnam. Compulsory military service or 'National service' was reintroduced in Australia in November 1964 by Prime Minister Robert Menzies to provide Australian support for the United States efforts.

The National Service Act of 1964 required able-bodied 20 year old men, selected by a ballot of birthdays, to serve for two years in regular army units. In May 1965 the Defence Act was amended to provide that these conscripts could also be required to serve overseas.

Between 1965 and 1972 (when the last Australian troops were withdrawn from Vietnam) over 800,000 men were registered for National Service, 63,000 were conscripted by the ballot, and some 19,000 served in Vietnam.

This controversial commitment to Australian service in the Vietnam conflict polarised public opinion in Australia, leading to a growing protest movement including the formation of anti-war organisations, street demonstrations, and numerous publications.

A pamphlet How not to join the Army giving 'advice to 20 year olds' was made available in Australia in mid-1968. In an article titled 'Students advised on sabotage' (Sunday Mail, 22 June 1968, p. 2) claims were made that Adelaide University students were selling the pamphlet outside of Parliament House. John McLeay, Liberal MHR for Boothby, described the document as 'seditious'. Andrew Jones MHR and TC Eastick, President of the State RSL, declared the pamphlet to be 'treasonable'. The pamphlet provided tips on numerous ways to 'beat the call-up', including conscientious objection and advice on how to behave at the medical.

Coverage year : 1968
Period : 1946-1979
Further reading :
Edwards, Peter. A nation at war: Australian politics, society and diplomacy during the Vietnam War 1965-1975, St Leonards, N.S.W.: Allen & Unwin in association with the Australian War Memorial, 1997

Langley, Greg. A decade of dissent: Vietnam and the conflict on the Australian homefront, North Sydney: Allen & Unwin, 1992

Internet links :
Australian War Memorial See: Encyclopedia: 'National Service Scheme, Vietnam'; 'Vietnam War 1962-1972'

South Australians at war [State Library of South Australia]

Vietnam War 1961-1975 State Library of South Australia Factsheet

Vietnam Veterans' Association of AustraliaSee: Education



About SA Memory

Explore SA Memory

SA Memory Themes


My SA Memory


What's on