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Thursday, 29 October 1970

Mr SPEAKER -Order! I think this morning is not a time for joking. Many of us have not had enough sleep.

Mr BRYANT - My question is addressed to the Minister for the Army. Some criticism has been offered of the Australian Labor Party's policy to withdraw , all troops from Vietnam on the grounds that it would cause military difficulties iri the area. Is it not a fact that the Australian forces do not garrison in an area and that no Vietnamese people rely upon . Australian troops for protection? Is it not a fact that Australian troops do not operate in close conjunction with Vietnamese or troops from the United States of America, and that a complete withdrawal from the area would have little military or political effect upon the province itself? As our presence has had little or no political impact in the area there is nothing to be gained militarily or politically by remaining there.

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