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Monday, 20 August 2012
Page: 9097

Mr ABBOTT (WarringahLeader of the Opposition) (14:03): I rise to support the words of the Prime Minister. Yes, it is 50 years now since the beginning of Australia's involvement in the Vietnam War, and Saturday was the 46th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan, the largest single engagement involving Australians, a remarkable engagement where 100 members of the Australian Army defeated at least 2,000 Vietcong and North Vietnamese regular army personnel. It was a great victory. It was obviously a tragic day, though, and it is right that we remember the service and sacrifice of all who fought in that conflict. We remember those killed and wounded in action. We also remember all of those who have suffered since as a result of their service.

It is good that the Vietnamese government has made available the original Long Tan cross. Obviously, I would urge as many Australians as possible to visit the War Memorial to view the cross as an act of homage to those who fought under our flag in that conflict.