Australian Governmental Control During World War II

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Australian Governmental Control in World War Two
World War II was the most devastating war in history and saw more people killed, service men, women and civilians alike than any war before or since. Virtually every part of the world was included in the conflict during the years 1939-1945, and Australia was involved extensively. Due to the nature of war the Australian Government imposed a series of wartime controls and restrictions that negatively affected the everyday life of civilians. During World War II, laws were introduced that restricted individual freedoms to promote the idea of austerity. The policies included cutting consumption, going without, wasting nothing, living simply, conscription, manpower controls, rationing and
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These include freedom of opinion, thought, association and freedom from arbitrary detention and are all about treating others fairly and being fairly treated yourself, and making genuine choices in daily life. Wilson says ‘Respect for human rights underpins the democratic processes of our society and is the cornerstone of a society that respects individuals and voluntary community collaboration’ (Tim Wilson, 2014). Despite this, the control the Australian Government exercised over its people in WWII encroached on all of these universally recognized human rights, and it was in 1948 after the atrocity of WWII that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was internationalised.
Throughout World War II the Australian Government implemented a number of wartime controls and restrictions on individual freedoms and consumption. Broadly, these included censorship, propaganda and rationing and they first came into play when the National Security Act of 1939 was passed. This act overpowered the guidelines of the constitution, hence giving the Commonwealth Government powers to make laws that it would otherwise not be authorised to (Anzacday organisation, 2015). Censorship was one of these new laws, and is the governmental control of information made public by the media, and so strictly banned the release of sensitive military information that The Department of
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