ANZUS Alliance Formed in 1951

The ANZUS treaty, named for the initials of the signatory governments, was signed Sept. 1, 1951, in San Francisco. Its formal name is the Tripartite Security Treaty Between the Governments of Australia, New Zealand and the United States.

Its members meet annually--in Canberra, Wellington or Washington--to discuss developments in Asia and the Pacific. The accord has served primarily as a vehicle for political consultation, although it specifies, in a key section, that:

"Each party recognizes that an armed attack in the Pacific area on any of the parties would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional processes."

Australia and New Zealand both sent troops to support the U.S. military effort in Korea, in the early 1950s, and in Vietnam.

Australia sent a rifle battalion and New Zealand an artillery regiment to Korea, to serve with a Commonwealth division there. To Vietnam, Australia sent a total of about 47,000 men; its peak strength there was around 10,000. New Zealand's contribution was a force of 300.

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