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Audio Klaus Scheuermann describes 'welcome home' parades, 2008

TLF ID R9393

This is an edited sound recording of Klaus Scheuermann describing the 'welcome home' parade in Brisbane on 12 November 1970 for Australian soldiers who had just returned from South Vietnam. Scheuermann says that the 'fairly rousing welcome' made him and other members of the 8th Battalion of the Royal Australian Regiment (8RAR) feel appreciated. He mentions an earlier parade in Sydney and says that Australian soldiers who never participated in a parade with their unit tended to be 'pretty disenchanted'. The recording was made in March 2008.




Educational details

Educational value
  • This recording gives a first-hand account of what it was like to return to Australia after having served in the Vietnam War (1959-75). There were about 760 soldiers from the 8RAR battalion in the Brisbane parade, half professional soldiers and half conscripts. Among the tens of thousands of people who attended the parade, there would have been mixed feelings about Australian involvement in the War, but most wanted to welcome the troops home.
  • Scheuermann implies that it was of psychological benefit for returning soldiers such as himself to receive a warm welcome home while marching with comrades. He suggests that there was a psychological 'problem' for veterans who returned home as individuals and without a parade. It was not until 1987 that the Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia organised a major national parade involving 25,000 veterans marching in Sydney.
  • Scheuermann refers to a 'blood incident' that marred the otherwise positive reception when he returned to Sydney in 1967 with another regiment, the 5RAR. A female anti-War protester threw herself at soldiers after daubing herself in red paint to symbolise the blood of Vietnamese people killed in the War. Some returning Vietnam War veterans were subjected to abuse by anti-War protesters.
  • The Brisbane-based 8RAR was the first unit of Australian troops to be withdrawn from the Vietnam War and not replaced. Their return to Brisbane signified the beginning of Australia's disengagement from the War, which was completed in 1973. The 8RAR served in Vietnam from November 1969 to October 1970, mainly in 'pacification' operations to seek out and destroy Viet Cong bases.
  • From 1962 to 1973 more than 60,000 Australians served in the War; 520 died and almost 2,400 were wounded. Australia was part of an allied force led by the USA. The allies fought alongside South Vietnamese Government forces against the Viet Cong, a communist-led insurgent force that was supported by the North Vietnamese Army.

Other details

Contributors
  • Contributor
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organization: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Description: Content provider
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au/
  • Name: Education Services Australia
  • Organization: Education Services Australia
  • Description: Data manager
  • Person: Klaus Scheuermann
  • Description: Author
  • Copyright Holder
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organization: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au/
  • Publisher
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organization: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Description: Publisher
  • Address: VIC, AUSTRALIA
  • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au/
  • Resource metadata contributed by
  • Name: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Organisation: Education Services Australia Ltd
  • Address: AUSTRALIA
  • URL: www.esa.edu.au
Access profile
  • Colour independence
  • Device independence
Learning Resource Type
  • Audio
Rights
  • © Education Services Australia Ltd, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements.