As President Nixon is reducing his country's troop commitments in South Vietnam, so are other governments, among them Australia.
As President Nixon is reducing his country's troop commitments in South Vietnam, so are other governments, among them Australia. The Australian 8th Batallion left South Vietnam recently to return home.
In spite of the loss of 350 lives, the Australians leave Phuoc Tuo province in South Vietnam, where they have been operating, with a record of success. Enemy strength is said to be down from 5,000 to 800. The Australians defended the villages from outside attacks.
The Australians have also been active supporting the government forces in building programmes. They have given valuable help in the building of quarters for South Vietnamese government troops and their families. But despite their attempts to win the confidence of the local villagers, the village nearest the Australian headquarters can not be described as pro-government.
The Australians and the South Vietnamese coexist peacefully, but the villagers still give food to the communists when they come in the night. It is recognised that this is a problem only the Vietnamese can solve, and the Australians are now leaving it to them.