ANZAC Day Observed

Those of us in the Northern Hemisphere tend to forget how much the Aussies, Kiwis, South Africans, and colonial troops contributed in WWI, WWII, and to later conflicts.

ANZAC

April 25th is ANZAC Day, but it will be observed on April 27 this year. It honors the men and women who served in the Australian and New Zealand forces in wars ranging from the Boer War to Vietnam, the East Timor conflict, and other fields of battle.

Members of the Albert Battery shoot a volley of fire during the Anzac Day dawn service held by the Currumbin RSL on the Gold Coast on Monday, April 25, 2016. Australians and New Zealanders today honour those who died on the 101th anniversary of the battle of Gallipoli in WWI. (AAP Image/Glenn Hunt) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY

Why April 25? Gallipoli began that day, in 1915.  The Australian War memorial, which is an amazing museum and highly, highly worth visiting, has an excellent history of ANZAC Day.  We in the US don’t often realize just what a terrible percent of their military-age young men Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and other parts of the Commonwealth have lost in WWI, WWII, and other conflicts.

Lest We Forget.

 

9 thoughts on “ANZAC Day Observed

  1. Agree with Luke, Gallipoli was a cluster of huge proportion… Way too many died due to poor leadership and lack of tactical planning/knowledge…

    • Gallipoli ought to be the case study in why “If it doesn’t work, do more of the same thing, but harder and with more resources” should not be the primary fall-back position.

      • Instead, it seems to form the basis of much (most?) public policy. “It didn’t work very well. Let’s throw even more money and regulation at it.”

  2. I know less than I should about the First World War… but I know quite a bit about the Second. Canadian-manned destroyers and corvettes were an essential part of the Atlantic escort fleet that defeated the U-boats, There were a lot of Australian troops in North Africa, fighting against the Afrika Korps, and in the Mediterranean campaigns. On the other side of the world, it could be said that the combined forces which drove the Japanese out of the Southwest Pacific/New Guinea theater consisted of an Australian army supported by an American air force and navy.

    • There’s a lot of truth to the last. And Americans tend to forget that the British were also fighting the Japanese, coming overland through the jungles of Burma. I knew an English pilot who flew Mosquitoes in India. To the day he died he refused to eat rice ever again.

      Back when the History channel still occasionally had history shows, they ran an Aussie special about the Kokoda Trail in New Guinea. Grim stuff.

      • Yes, the Burma-India theater deserves far more recognition than it gets. Tropical jungle fighting at its worst. Veterans of both sides who fought on Guadalcanal called it “Starvation Island” and remembered it with special horror. Burma was two YEARS of that kind of fighting, against the best army the Japanese Empire had to offer. New Guinea was almost as bad. The few accounts I’ve read of the Kokoda Trail fighting are pure nightmare fuel.

        Fun fact: the Burma Theater also saw the last (as far as I know) recorded use of elephants in wartime — James Howard “Billy” Williams and his Elephant Brigade. They didn’t actually fight the Japanese, though; they were an engineer unit, using the elephants to go places and do things that machines couldn’t.

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