Threat of Communism
The threat of communism in Asia increased fears in Australia in 1950s and 60s. This was all because of the ‘domino theory’ which the Australian government believed that the communist takeover of neighbouring nations in Asia would cause Australia fall under communist domination as well. Therefore, Australia responded to threat of communism in a number of different ways. This is evident in the way Australia joined the ANZUS and SEATO treaties and became involved in the Korean and Vietnam wars. The Liberal Party government had introduced the attempt to ban the Australian Communist Party and the Royal Commission as a result of the Petrov Affair. These events indicated the genuine fear of communism and the reaction of the Liberal government during the Cold War period.

The Australian government believed there was a communist threat to Australia from Asia because of various reasons. Australia had been greatly affected by the threat of Japanese invasion and the government was concerned about the Communist Revolution in China would fall into Australia through the domino theory. This led Australia joined two defence treaties which they believed that would provide them security and defence against communism expansion. This is proved the way Australia had joined the ANZUS Treaty in 1951 which resulted from the fear of communist expansion in the Asia-Pacific region and Australia’s desire to have America as a strong and powerful and SEATO Treaty to protect Southeast Asia region from the spread of communism. Under the terms of the treaties, an insurance policy where the partners declared their sense of unity and support of each other if faced by armed attack was held. This resulting Australian became part of the Korean War in the early 1950s as the airmen were first to provide armed support to American troops and involved in Vietnam War as the forward defence of the region was seen as part of Australia’s alliance obligations.

Menzies had always felt there was a danger within Australia that must be stopped, therefore he had introduced a referendum to ban the Communist Party on 22nd September 1951. The fear of communism sweeping around the world became an election issue and the Liberal Party government led by Robert Menzies introduced the Communist Dissolution Bill into

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Australian Government And Communist Takeover. (April 3, 2021). Retrieved from