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This site may, in fact always will contain images and information likely to cause consternation, conniptions, distress, along with moderate to severe bedwetting among statists, wimps, wusses, politicians, lefties, green fascists, and creatures of the state who can't bear the thought of anything that disagrees with their jaded view of the world.

Apr 24, 2008

Anzac Day.

Australian troops landing at Gallipoli.

At dawn on the 25th 0f April 1915, Australian, New Zealand, and other allied troops landed at Gallipoli in a move to open a new front against the axis powers. The landing and the subsequent campaign was an unmitigated disaster, owing to the fact that it was predictable after the British naval attempt to force the Dardanelles earlier.

In an 8 month campaign Australia lost 8,709 dead, and around 18,000 wounded. We observe the anniversary each year to remember the sacrifice made by our forces in all conflicts.

In 1934 Kemal Ataturk who as Colonel Mustafa Kemal, commanded the Turkish forces opposing the allied forces at Gallipoli in 1915, wrote a tribute to the ANZACs killed there.

Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives... You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side now here in this country of ours... you, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land. They have become our sons as well.

This inscription appears on the Kemal Ataturk Memorial, the only memorial honoring an enemy commander on Anzac Parade in Canberra, or as far as I am aware anywhere in Australia.

At the beginning of WW1 Australia had a total population of about 4.5 million, of which 417,000 enlisted in the AIF, (about 40% of the eligible male population) around 317,000 of whom were sent overseas, suffering over 215,000 casualties (about 65%). Of these 61,928 were killed.

The incompetence of British commanders, and their lack of concern for the lives entrusted to them was legendary, especially the lives of "colonial, or imperial" troops. Australians and New Zealanders tended to be used as shock troops and suffered disproportionately.

One of the expressions Australians used in both world wars was, "England will fight to the last imperial soldier."

"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old. 

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. 

At the going down of the sun and in the morning 

We will remember them".

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