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Tuesday, 15 March 1966

Mr HAROLD HOLT - The honorable gentleman will appreciate that these men are trained in Army units and when a unit was about to be dispatched overseas it would be impracticable to call for volunteers from within the unit. If this were done the ranks would have to be reformed and training begun again. It does not take a great deal of thought to appreciate that the present method of selecting servicemen for service in Vietnam is the only practical one. lt is well known that the United States, which has something more than 200,000 troops in South Vietnam compared with the proposed Australian component of 4,500, has for many years operated a system of induction into the Army which has operated over a wider proportion of the community than does the Australian national service training scheme. My understanding is that the number of persons serving in the United States forces in South Vietnam represents a considerably 'higher proportion of persons inducted into the United States Army than is the case with the Australian units.

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