On 18 September Moratorium marchers encountered a determined effort by the police to reassert their ‘dictatorship of the streets’. This might have been expected to occur most virulently in Brisbane and Melbourne but it was in Sydney and Adelaide that the police were most vicious, attacking demonstrators with pre-planned clockwork precision.
On this, the 50th anniversary of the 8 May 1970 Moratorium, we publish Ken Mansell's "‘Taking to the Streets against the Vietnam War’: A Timeline History of Australian Protest 1962-1972", which takes you through the myriad protests and events that led to the largest demonstrations Australia had ever seen.
1972 January 2 – Anti-war activists in Melbourne meet at Shrine and proceed to U.S Consulate for rally against renewed U.S bombing of North Vietnam January 7 – Further demonstration in Melbourne against renewed U.S bombing of North Vietnam January 10 – Draft resister John Scott arrested in Adelaide and remanded on bail until February... Continue Reading →
1971 January – Commonwealth police interrogate signatories to Christmas anti-conscription advertisement in The Australian January 9-10 – National Moratorium Coordinating Committee meets in Melbourne to plan February 17-21 National Anti-War Conference January 15 – ‘Black Power’ demonstration by GI’s in South Vietnam January 18 – Brian Glover to serve seven days at Long Bay jail... Continue Reading →
1970 January 8 – Plain clothes police pull guns and threaten to shoot Ted Poulton and Phillip Twomey near SDS headquarters in Carlton. The two are interrogated for seven hours at Russell Street January 11 – Activists at ‘The Bakery’ in Prahran disband Revolutionary Socialist Alliance (‘Rev Socs’) and establish ‘The Worker-Student Alliance’ (WSA) January... Continue Reading →
1969 January – Interstate conference in Melbourne sets up National Campaign Against Conscription (NCAC) January 3 – Twenty-year-old medical student Sean Foley begins serving 29-day sentence at Long Bay jail for refusing to pay a fine arising from failure to attend medical examination for National Service January – Conscientious objector Desmond Phillipson alleges brutal treatment... Continue Reading →
1968 January – Vietnam Action Campaign (VAC) and Sydney University Labour Club establish Third World Bookshop and off-campus youth centre ‘Resistance’ at 35 Goulburn Street January 17 – Prime Minister Gorton holds press conference and echoes Lyndon Johnson - ‘It is only reasonable to stop the bombing of North Vietnam if the North stops sending... Continue Reading →
1967 January 4 – John Lindsay Anderson is first conscientious objector to apply for exemption solely on objection to the Vietnam war. His application fails January – Monash Labor Club members (soon dubbed the ‘Caulfield Cong’) establish household at 7 Jasmine Street South Caulfield. ‘Jasmine Street’ spawns off-campus ‘Anti-Ky Action Committee’ (AKAC) to lead Melbourne... Continue Reading →
1966 January – Robert Menzies resigns as Australian Prime Minister – Harold Holt takes the reins January 20 – Francis James (editor of The Anglican) returns home to Sydney after trip to North Vietnam January 29-30 – National anti-conscription conference (Sydney) convened by YCAC (NSW) February 2 –Third conscript intake Swan Street Army Depot February... Continue Reading →
1965 January – U.S extends the war to Laos and blasts trails used by North Vietnamese to pass supplies and cadres to NLF January – ‘National Service’ registration period begins for youths turning twenty January 1-June 30 January – Australian military personnel numbers in South Vietnam rise to 200 (including 81 ‘advisors’) February 7 –... Continue Reading →