IT MIGHT only be a small, stone memorial carved out of hill in front of the Tamworth train station.
But New England MP Barnaby Joyce regarded Tamworth's Vietnam war monument, and the people it acknowledges as a foundation of the nation.
Mr Joyce was the guest speaker on the city's Vietnam Veterans' Day service, which fell on the 53rd anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan.
The former deputy prime minster used the opportunity to compare the threat of communism on the west in the 1960s, to the present issues in the South China Sea.
"It would be foolish to not acknowledge what is happening in the South China Sea; what is happening in islands to the north of us," Mr Joyce said.
"And we once more see an encroachment on the freedoms and liberties which are Australia's."
He told the crowd of more than 50 people like those who served in Vietnam helped protect the nation and freedoms people take for granted.
"If you do not have people who will seek out and close with the enemy, kill or capture him by day or by night, regardless of season weather or terrain," he said.
"You will not have a nation.
"Our nation, this wonderful endowment we have, will collapse and fail."