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Vietnam Task »

The 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment, 1966–67

Authored by: Robert O’Neill
Publication date: November 2022
On 24 May 1966, eight hundred men of the 5th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment, landed at Nui Dat, in Viet Cong territory. For the next 12 months they were faced with the task of restoring peace, civil law and regular commerce to the Vietnamese of Phuoc Tuy province. This book is a detailed record of those months in the monsoon jungles—of the problems that were faced and the solutions that were found. Captain O’Neill’s position as battalion intelligence officer enabled him to view the war from the standpoint of the battalion as a whole. However, he does not omit description of personal feelings—towards the Viet Cong, the jungle environment and the Vietnamese people, as well as the other Allied forces involved in the war. Most of the book was written on the spot in Vietnam. On operations or at Battalion Headquarters, Captain O’Neill jotted down details of the war against the Viet Cong, putting the events of each day in order, often in the small hours of the following morning. Thus not only is this a factual account of the 5th Battalion’s activities over the year; it is also a vivid and compelling picture of the war in Vietnam from the soldier’s point of view.
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Vietnam Vanguard »

The 5th Battalion's Approach to Counter-Insurgency, 1966

Publication date: February 2020
The Vietnam War, and Australia’s part in it, was a major military event, calling for willingness to face death and destruction on the battlefield on the part of those sent there, especially the men of our infantry battalions who formed the spearhead of our forces in Vietnam. For many reasons, the Australian public know relatively little about what our Army did in Vietnam during the war, particularly during the years of our peak commitment, 1965–72. This book attempts to make the true nature of the war clearer to readers, emphasising how hard fought it was during major operations. Twenty-seven of the contributing authors of this book were involved in the 1966 deployment of the 1st Australian Task Force into Phuoc Tuy Province. This formation was the first Australian Army force larger than an infantry battalion group to be deployed into a major war since World War II. 5th Battalion, the Royal Australian Regiment (5 RAR), was in the vanguard as the task force’s first element committed to operations to seize and occupy Nui Dat base and embark on establishing dominance over the enemy. The narratives presented in this book give rare insights into thoughts of the soldiers at the time and how they have come to view the Australian Government’s hurried expansion of its initial commitment to that war, the Army’s state of preparedness for that wider involvement, and how those in its forefront adapted to get the job done, both in and out of operations, despite numerous shortcomings in higher level planning. Both professional soldiers and conscripted national servicemen have contributed viewpoints to these pages.
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East Asia Forum Quarterly: Volume 11, Number 1, 2019 »

Publication date: March 2019
This issue of East Asia Forum Quarterly touches on key economic and social questions that affect gender equality in Southeast Asia and East Asia, delving beneath the aggregates and measurement challenges. Strengthening the evidence base is critical to building the policy toolkit and shaping public investments that ensure no woman or man is left behind. East Asia Forum Quarterly grew out of East Asia Forum (EAF) online, which has developed a reputation for providing a platform for the best in Asian analysis, research and policy comment on the Asia Pacific region in world affairs. EAFQ aims to provide a further window onto research in the leading research institutes in Asia and to provide expert comment on current developments within the region. The East Asia Forum Quarterly, like East Asia Forum online, is an initiative of the East Asia Forum (EAF) and its host organisation, the East Asian Bureau of Economic Research (EABER) in the Crawford School of Economics and Government in the College of Asia & the Pacific at The Australian National University.
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Global Debates, Local Dilemmas »

Sex-selective Abortion in Contemporary Viet Nam

Authored by: Tran Minh Hang
Publication date: December 2018
The practice of sex-selective abortion is on the rise globally, stirring debates about gender inequality, medical ethics and reproductive autonomy. This book is the first ethnography to document practices of sex selection in Viet Nam. It shows how and why abortions are used to select the sex of children and how Vietnamese individuals and health professionals are implicated in this illicit and controversial practice. Telling the stories of women who have undergone sex-selective abortions, it traces their passage through sex determination and abortion decision-making phases, and investigates their experiences during and after their sex-selective abortions. It describes the turmoil experienced by individuals who undergo such abortions and explores their interactions with the spectrum of social actors and health institutions that facilitate practices of sex selection. As the first ethnographic study on sex-selective abortions in Viet Nam, this book delves into socially sensitive terrain and sheds light on personally fraught individual experiences of reproductive agency. It documents societal responses to sex-selective abortions in Viet Nam and identifies gaps in the state’s capacity to regulate reproductive desire in a marketised economy. A resource for researchers, it contributes to ongoing debates on sex selection and provides a framework for developing relevant social policies, interventions and support services. ‘This pioneering study offers a nuanced and sensitive account of sex-selective abortion as human experience. Through thought provoking case studies, the book provides rare ethnographic documentation of the complex quandaries that arise as selective reproductive technologies are routinised across the globe.’ — Tine M. Gammeltoft, Department of Anthropology, University of Copenhagen
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Vietnam’s Post-1975 Agrarian Reforms »

How local politics derailed socialist agriculture in southern Vietnam

Authored by: Trung Dang
Publication date: April 2018
This book investigates why collectivised farming failed in south Vietnam after 1975. Despite the strong will of the new regime to implement collectivisation, the effort was uneven, misapplied and subverted. After only 10 years of trying, the regime annulled the policy. Focusing on two case studies—Quảng Nam province in the Central Coast region and An Giang province in the Mekong Delta—and based on extensive evidence, this study argues that the reasons for variations in implementation and the failure and reversal of the policy were twofold: regional differences and local politics.
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East Asia Forum Quarterly: Volume 10, Number 1, 2018 »

Publication date: March 2018
East Asia Forum Quarterly grew out of East Asia Forum (EAF) online, which has developed a reputation for providing a platform for the best in Asian analysis, research and policy comment on the Asia Pacific region in world affairs. EAFQ aims to provide a further window onto research in the leading research institutes in Asia and to provide expert comment on current developments within the region. The East Asia Forum Quarterly, like East Asia Forum online, is an initiative of the East Asia Forum (EAF) and its host organisation, the East Asian Bureau of Economic Research (EABER) in the Crawford School of Economics and Government in the College of Asia & the Pacific at The Australian National University.
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New Perspectives in Southeast Asian and Pacific Prehistory »

Publication date: March 2017
‘This volume brings together a diversity of international scholars, unified in the theme of expanding scientific knowledge about humanity’s past in the Asia-Pacific region. The contents in total encompass a deep time range, concerning the origins and dispersals of anatomically modern humans, the lifestyles of Pleistocene and early Holocene Palaeolithic hunter-gatherers, the emergence of Neolithic farming communities, and the development of Iron Age societies. These core enduring issues continue to be explored throughout the vast region covered here, accordingly with a richness of results as shown by the authors. Befitting of the grand scope of this volume, the individual contributions articulate perspectives from multiple study areas and lines of evidence. Many of the chapters showcase new primary field data from archaeological sites in Southeast Asia. Equally important, other chapters provide updated regional summaries of research in archaeology, linguistics, and human biology from East Asia through to the Western Pacific.’ Mike T. Carson Associate Professor of Archaeology Micronesian Area Research Center University of Guam
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War, Strategy and History »

Essays in Honour of Professor Robert O’Neill

Publication date: May 2016
This is a collection of essays in honour of eminent Professor Robert O’Neill. Each chapter was written by prominent academics and practitioners who have had a professional connection with Professor O’Neill during his long and distinguished career. The overarching themes running throughout the book are war, strategy and history. All the essays are shaped by the role that Professor O’Neill has played over the last 50 years in the debates in Australia, Europe and the US. This book covers not only Professor O’Neill’s impressive career, but also the evolution of strategy in practice, and of strategic studies as an internationally recognised academic discipline.
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Connected and Disconnected in Viet Nam »

Remaking Social Relations in a Post-socialist Nation

Edited by: Philip Taylor
Publication date: March 2016
Vietnam’s shift to a market-based society has brought about profound realignments in its people’s relations with each other. As the nation continues its retreat from the legacies of war and socialism, significant social rifts have emerged that divide citizens by class, region and ethnicity. By drawing on social connections as a traditional resource, Vietnamese are able to accumulate wealth, overcome marginalisation and achieve social mobility. However, such relationship-building strategies are also fraught with peril for they have the potential to entrench pre-existing social divisions and lead to new forms of disconnectedness. This book examines the dynamics of connection and disconnection in the lives of contemporary Vietnamese. It features 11 chapters by anthropologists who draw upon research in both highland and lowland contexts to shed light on social capital disparities, migration inequalities and the benefits and perils of gift exchange. The authors investigate ethnic minority networks, the politics of poverty, patriotic citizenship, and the ‘heritagisation’ of culture. Tracing shifts in how Vietnamese people relate to their consociates and others, the chapters elucidate the social legacies of socialism, nation-building and the transition to a globalised market-based economy. With compelling case studies and including many previously unheard perspectives, this book offers original insights into social ties and divisions among the modern Vietnamese.
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Vietnam as if… »

Tales of youth, love and destiny

Authored by: Kim Huynh
Publication date: August 2015
Vietnam as if… follows five young people who have moved from the countryside to the city. Their dramatic everyday lives illuminate some of the most pressing issues in Vietnam today: ‘The Sticky Rice Seller’ explores gender roles; ‘The Ball Boy’ is all about the struggles of sexual and ethnic minorities; ‘The Professional’ examines relations between rich and poor; ‘The Goalkeeper’ delves into politics and ideology; and ‘The Student’ reflects upon family and faith. The stories also reboot several classics of Vietnamese literature for the twenty-first century, including ‘Floating Dumplings’ by feminist poet Ho Xuan Huong, Vu Trong Phung’s satire of French colonialism Dumb Luck, Nguyen Du’s epic account of fate and sacrifice ‘The Tale of Kieu’, and the proclamations of Ho Chi Minh. These novellas reveal the deepest sentiments of Vietnamese youth as they – like youth everywhere – come of age, fall in love and contest their destiny. In 2011 Kim Huynh returned to Vietnam, having left more than three decades earlier. He had few plans other than to experience as much of his birthplace as possible. That year he came into contact with a wide range of people and took on many trades. Kim drank and dined with government officials, went on pilgrimages with corporate tycoons and marched in the streets against foreign aggression. He sold sticky rice, was a tennis player and also a ball boy, attended all manner of rituals and celebrations, eavesdropped on people in cafés and restaurants, and went back to the classroom as both a student and a teacher. Rich in detail and broad in scope, these tales capture Kim’s experiences and imaginings of Vietnam as if….
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