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Australians: Need Help With Feelings On Anzac Day  
User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3337 times:

Hello everyone,

Considering how much I have learned from people on this site to date, I felt this was the correct place to go to.

I'm in a bit of a dilemma concerning ANZAC day. For those who don't know it is the national day of remembrance for Australia and New Zealand - specifically relating to a bloody battle in Gallipoli, Turkey - between Imperial and Turkish forces in WWI.

I may be offending people by saying this, but I don't know what to feel about this day. I look at the historical event in question and I realise that my nation was attempting to invade another country. These young soldiers were fighting for a cause that I do not believe was justified. To me, that removes any feelings of gratitude I might have to the soldiers for this event - as they weren't involved in a campaign that I though brought about any benefit at all. It just seems like senseless carnage - an unnecessary loss of life that should have been prevented. So, because I cannot feel a sense of gratitude, and because I cannot see their loss of life as a sacrifice - I'm struggling to place my thoughts on the legacy of the ANZACs at Gallipoli.

I recognise that it was a tragic event that should never have happened, but beyond that I cannot reconcile my feelings. I hear people in the media going on about how "...they died for us." - but I really cannot see it that way in the slightest.

Can anyone help me out? I'd appreciate it if others could share how they feel about ANZAC day and Gallipoli, and why?

QFF

140 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 53
Reply 1, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3331 times:

It's important to remember that Turkey wasn't neutral, so that campaign wasn't one that's comparable to, say, the German invasion of Belgium. Quite how committed they were is questionable, since they'd essentially been blackmailed on to the German side by the guns of the Emden.

Nor was it an invasion of occupation. It was a massive war, both geographically and logistically. Once it had started the theatres moved.

It's debatable how the campaign in the Dardanelles was conceived though. Was it a brilliant idea poorly executed (the back door into Germany), or was it always doomed to failure? Hard to say.

I'll leave the Australian bit to those you asked for an opinion.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineQANTASFOREVER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3326 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 1):
It's important to remember that Turkey wasn't neutral, so that campaign wasn't one that's comparable to, say, the German invasion of Belgium.

Even so, I don't think Australia should have been involved in WWI. I understand that there was a belief that one could gain a back-door into the German nations, and ensure supply though the Dardanelles - but it was a bungled mission, conceived by the incompetent fools at the top of the British Military. I personally believe the whole thing was doomed to fail from the start.

QFF


User currently offlineGkirk From UK - Scotland, joined Jun 2000, 24961 posts, RR: 56
Reply 3, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3322 times:

Even if you dont think the reason for the fighting was there, you should still honour those soldiers who died, whether you believe it for a good reason or bad reason.
I think that you should feel something for the poor chaps who lost their lives, but perhaps hatred towards your government at the time?



When you hear the noise of the Tartan Army Boys, we'll be coming down the road!
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 53
Reply 4, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 3317 times:

Quoting QANTASFOREVER (Reply 2):
Even so, I don't think Australia should have been involved in WWI.

You have to be careful not to look at these things through 21st century eyes.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3312 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 4):
You have to be careful not to look at these things through 21st century eyes.

I can't help it - I'm a 21st century person. I know that people saw the Empire as a blanket of protection, but even if I was around in those days I'm certain I would have had severe misgivings about sending Australians off to Europe to die for a foreign country and an unjust cause.

Quoting Gkirk (Reply 3):
Even if you dont think the reason for the fighting was there, you should still honour those soldiers who died, whether you believe it for a good reason or bad reason.

The thing is, that I don't even think there was a reason. The conservative media in Australia are always raving on about the sacrifice of the soldiers at Gallipoli, - I don't think it was a sacrifice at all. While it the massacre was completely tragic, I cannot separate the way I feel about something like the attempted invasion of Turkey from the Port Arthur Massacre, columbine - or any other event that saw a large loss of life.

I also cannot help but see parallels between WWI and Gulf War II.

QFF


User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 53
Reply 6, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3303 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 5):
I can't help it - I'm a 21st century person. I know that people saw the Empire as a blanket of protection, but even if I was around in those days I'm certain I would have had severe misgivings about sending Australians off to Europe to die for a foreign country and an unjust cause.

But it wasn't seen as a foreign country. There's another point, in that hindsight makes everything seem so much easier. You can make an argument that Britain shouldn't have involved itself in WWI either. The UK responded to what it felt was unwarranted agression, for a whole host of altruistic and self-interested reasons. Looking back now and saying that we should have done this or that is pretty pointless, unless one considers the realities of the time. In exactly the same way as happened in Britain (and France, Germany and even the USA, when the horrors were better known), thousands upon thousands volunteered.

Anzac troops didn't know they were going to a slaughter field any more than the thousands of Britons both in Gallipoli and on the Western Front.

In many ways, for all the abuse heaped on the generals from this day and age, it's hard to see that they could have done that much more. Undoubtedly, they could have been a bloody sight more careful with the lives of the troops, but the technology of destruction far outstripped the technology of mobility. Horrendous trench warfare was the result.

My overriding emotion is sadness rather than anger. It was truly, truly appalling, but second-guessing doesn't answer the critical issues of the war, its conduct and the motives of nations.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7342 posts, RR: 13
Reply 7, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3297 times:

Quoting QANTASFOREVER (Reply 2):
Even so, I don't think Australia should have been involved in WWI

I think we both agree that our countries shouldn't have been involved, however we didn't have a choice. Your country and mine both got royally screwed over by being a member of the Commonwealth so basically we had to fight for 'our master' whether we wanted to or not.

I agree with you, it's odd to know how to feel about Gallipoli, it's such a long way away and such a long time ago that it's hard to relate to the whole situation with our countries and our people today, so this is the way I look at it to help me see the reality. These guys were young and because of enlistment were forced to give up their lives back home, to go and fight a war they knew nothing about, with only Allied propaganda to go by. They thought that they'd all be on the boat home in a few weeks, but in reality they ended up as cattle to the abatoir and lost their lives in perhaps the most futile advance in both world wars. And as a result we lost an entire generation of New Zealand men.

To me Gallipoli reminds us to learn from mistakes that have been made in history and reminds us never to be complacent about our place in the world. At this time I also hope for New Zealand to never again fall into the trap of fighting for a cause we aren't sure about.
I feel proud that these men and women went off to fight for what they believed was to save their own country, but once in the horrific reality that greeted them, and realised they'd all been lied to they kept fighting anyway, even though these guys weren't hardened soldiers, they were civilians like you and me and that's what I admire most - The strength of our nation that developed in this period of huge hardship. That's why I thank the ANZACs for making the sacrifice.


User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3297 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 6):
You can make an argument that Britain shouldn't have involved itself in WWI either.

The UK did not have as much discretion potentially as Australia did. There was a war on your doorstep, a war that could easily have turned toward the United Kingdom geographically - and eventually did thirty years later.

Quoting Banco (Reply 6):
Anzac troops didn't know they were going to a slaughter field any more than the thousands of Britons both in Gallipoli and on the Western Front.

Can I just make the point that I do not believe that British Generals singled out ANZACs to participate in "Operation Human Shield". I understand more than 20,000 Britons died in the Gallipoli campaign. My anger stems from the fact that a foreign military command sent soldiers of my nation off to die in a futile mission. I in no way wish to detract from the tragic deaths of British Soldiers in Turkey.

Quoting Banco (Reply 6):
In many ways, for all the abuse heaped on the generals from this day and age, it's hard to see that they could have done that much more.

Ensuring the soldiers landed at the correct beach could have helped.

Quoting Banco (Reply 6):
My overriding emotion is sadness rather than anger. It was truly, truly appalling, but second-guessing doesn't answer the critical issues of the war, its conduct and the motives of nations.

Just automically, sans logique - my immediate reaction to it all is one of absolute anger and bewilderment. I'm astonished so many Australians freely joined up to fight a foreign war on the other side of the world, that governments in Australia and in Europe did not properly train their soldiers, that the military command was too antiquated and archaic to understand the full potential of modern technology on warfare, that military commanders could be so incompetent as to make an absolute blunder of the entire Dardanelles operation, and lastly - that I am expected (in a popular, mainstream sense) - to be grateful about it all.

Hence this thread - I am utterly, utterly, perplexed.

QFF


User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3296 times:

Quoting Aerorobnz (Reply 7):
feel proud that these men and women went off to fight for what they believed was to save their own country, but once in the horrific reality that greeted them, and realised they'd all been lied to they kept fighting anyway, even though these guys weren't hardened soldiers, they were civilians like you and me and that's what I admire most - The strength of our nation that developed in this period of huge hardship.

But, because they continued to fight despite realising that there was no reason to - why should we then admire them? Would it not have been better to stop fighting and return to New Zealand or Australia? I don't get it.

I think I'll have to go and watch the movie again.

QFF


User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3296 times:

Quoting Gkirk (Reply 3):
Even if you dont think the reason for the fighting was there, you should still honour those soldiers who died, whether you believe it for a good reason or bad reason.

Kirkie's right (Ooh. Did I just say that ?  Smile ) - regardless of whether the sacrifice was worth it or not, the soldiers at Galipoli did make the ultimate sacrifice, their lives. You can debate whether the campaign, or even the war, was worth their sacrifice (I'd be inclined to agree that it probably wasn't), but don't devalue their action - the decision to go to war and to participate in that campaign was not theirs - that's where they ended up, and they did the job they'd come to do. It is of course a terrible tragedy what happened, but the entire World War 1 was a stupid pointless tragedy from start to finish - this makes the sacrifice of those who died all the more poignant, and in remembering them, and honouring them, we remind ourselves that we don't want it to happen again !

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 5):
The conservative media in Australia are always raving on about the sacrifice of the soldiers at Gallipoli, - I don't think it was a sacrifice at all.

As per above, regardless of the reason or the value of the sacrifice they made, they nonetheless made it - perhaps we should honour them all the more (I know it seems odd, but bravery in the face of pointless military incompetence is no less honourable than bravery in the face of a sensible, attainable military objective). I'm no militarist, far from it indeed, and I can see why an Australian would question his country's participation in a pointless, senseless, ill-concieved and selfish European war - but it happened, it's history now, we observe and learn from it.


User currently offlineGman94 From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 1239 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3289 times:

You may not agree with Australians fighting in WWI, but you should look at this way. Germany declared way on France, the Schlieffen plan meant that the Germans had to go through Belgium which brought Britain into the war due to an alliance between us and the Belgians. I also believe that we would of declared war on Germany if they had not invaded Belgium and gone straight for France due to the Entente Cordialle treaty between Britain and France. The result of this would of been the Empire countries, what we would now call the commonwealth declaring war on Germany and coming to defence of a fellow member much like the NATO alliance would do today, an attack on one is an attack on all. Also if Australia had been threatened, Britain and other countries of the Empire would of certainly sent forces to the Pacific region to help Australia.

Once one country declared war on another the die was cast, all sorts of alliances and pacts came into play that brought all sorts of countries into WWI. Was the whole sorry affair mismanaged, of course it was. Military force only comes into play when the politician's screw up. Were the campaigns and battles poorly lead and managed, most definitely. But I believe your scorn should not be leveled at the soldier in the trench, they had no say in what they done or where they went, they may not of sacrificed for you but they sacrificed for their country. You should heap the blame onto the people that sent them there, the politician's that messed up. The vast majority of soldiers were the normal men in the street, you and me that could be called up to fight if it all goes pear shaped again. I honour the soldiers that fought and died for my country, whether the campaign was right or wrong, they just do what they are ordered to do.

You say you are struggling to place a legacy on men of Gallipoli, whether you agree or disagree with the campaign, it's now part of Australian history and is a small part of what makes you Australian. Same as I look at Britain's history, I look at both the good and the bad parts and whatever the rights and wrongs of that history it makes me and my country what it is today and I am proud of my country and I think you should be too.



British Airways - The Way To Fly
User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7342 posts, RR: 13
Reply 12, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3281 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 8):
I'm astonished so many Australians freely joined up to fight a foreign war on the other side of the world

Some did, but many were just sent away. These guys were teachers,farmers,accountants,students etc. provided they were old enough, they were drafted sent because they had to by law and by the terms of the Commonwealth.

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 9):
but, because they continued to fight despite realising that there was no reason to - why should we then admire them? Would it not have been better to stop fighting and return to New Zealand or Australia? I don't get it.

They could only have been (and were) courtmarshalled and shot for insubordination - they wouldn't have made it home anyway, they had to continue - knowing they would die,and knowing it's better to be remembered by their family in NZ as a gallant person who died a hero than a traitor. Remember all the kiwis back home were being fed British propaganda....Admire them because they were only civilians that died a soldier's death in inhuman conditions they faced if nothing else.

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 10):
it's history now, we observe and learn from it.

That's the most important thing of all.


User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 53
Reply 13, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3276 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 8):
The UK did not have as much discretion potentially as Australia did. There was a war on your doorstep, a war that could easily have turned toward the United Kingdom geographically - and eventually did thirty years later.

Perfectly true. I wouldn't argue that in the slightest. I merely make mention of it to say that 20/20 hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 8):
Quoting Banco (Reply 6):
In many ways, for all the abuse heaped on the generals from this day and age, it's hard to see that they could have done that much more.

Ensuring the soldiers landed at the correct beach could have helped.

I meant in terms of the war overall, rather than a single campaign. But in terms of Gallipoli, you're right. Not withdrawing the capital ships so soon is another point. So is taking so damn long to land them in the first place, allowing Turkish positions to be set up.

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 9):
But, because they continued to fight despite realising that there was no reason to - why should we then admire them? Would it not have been better to stop fighting and return to New Zealand or Australia? I don't get it.

Again, you can say the same for all the troops throughout the war. I do think this is incredibly hard for us to comprehend. The slaughter was so horrific, yet they still stood it. I'm just not sure that you or I can understand that.

As an aside, my grandfather, who as you know fought at Gallipoli, told my father that the soldiers would sometimes shoot the officers, to prevent the order to go over the top being received, as it were. I never knew him, so I couldn't vouch for the veracity of that, but he had no reason to lie. Can't say I blame them either.

Quoting Aerorobnz (Reply 7):
Your country and mine both got royally screwed over by being a member of the Commonwealth so basically we had to fight for 'our master' whether we wanted to or not.

I think this is an error, once again because of a modern view of what happened. There was massive enthusiasm in both Australia and New Zealand for the war, and the men joined in their thousands. It's probably true that Britain expected them to send soldiers to fight for the "mother country" as it was seen, but I don't think there was coercion involved. It just wasn't necessary.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7342 posts, RR: 13
Reply 14, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3267 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 13):
There was massive enthusiasm in both Australia and New Zealand for the war, and the men joined in their thousands

Only because they were scammed into believing it was not as big a situation as it actually was and that it was a good cheap way to see the world. It became the 'in' thing to do, and peer pressure overruled any sense of reason they may have had. It was made very difficult for those young men who did not go for whatever reason, as they were seen as soft and not fit men for their sweethearts to marry.


User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3266 times:

Quoting JGPH1A (Reply 10):
Kirkie's right (Ooh. Did I just say that ? ) - regardless of whether the sacrifice was worth it or not, the soldiers at Galipoli did make the ultimate sacrifice, their lives.

True. To me though, I cannot remove the feelings I have for the victims of other senseless tragedies (sept11, bali, port arthur) from my feelings for the troops in Gallipoli. I see no huge distinction between those at all. Am I weird to feel this way? I don't see the Gallipoli soldiers massacre as a sacrifice just as I do not see the victims of those aformentioned tragedies as sacrificial. They were victims, - so I guess if anything that will probably form the basis of my opinion: that these were victims of a senseless war, and while they may not have sacrificed their lives for the benefit of their country or for a just cause, - the tragic scope of the event must not be forgotten. This still does nothing to dilute my anger.

Quoting Gman94 (Reply 11):
Also if Australia had been threatened, Britain and other countries of the Empire would of certainly sent forces to the Pacific region to help Australia.

Well, we were threatened thirty years later. Like you we were on the verge of an invasion. Where was the UK then? It was a shaky agreement, one that I will eternally scorn the then British and Australian governments for.

In all - I shall despair for the loss of lives in a senseless war, remain eternally enraged by the actions of the Australian and British governments as well as the British military command, and poise to reflect on the lessons history teaches us.

Thank you guys. This has been truly enlightening.

QFF


User currently offlineYukimizake From Japan, joined Mar 2004, 529 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3262 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 8):
My anger stems from the fact that a foreign military command sent soldiers of my nation off to die in a futile mission.

The battle of Gallipoli took place only 14 years after independence, a time when the bond between Australia and Britain was still very strong. The Australian gov't of the day agreed unreservedly to send troops, allowing them to fall directly under British command. If you really want to look back in anger then who do you blame? The Australian gov't?, the British gov't, British generals? - it's pointless to look at it this way. Anzac day is to remember all of those Australians and New Zealanders killed in action, not to debate the merit of the causes of various campaigns.



'Opfer müssen gebracht werden (Sacrifices must be made)' - Otto Lilienthal
User currently offlineGman94 From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 1239 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3260 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 15):
Well, we were threatened thirty years later. Like you we were on the verge of an invasion. Where was the UK then? It was a shaky agreement, one that I will eternally scorn the then British and Australian governments for.

You may not of noticed but the British forces in the Pacific region were beaten by the Japs and we had a few problems on our own doorstep, we were in no shape to to send much help other then the Navy which was still the biggest and most powerful in WWII.



British Airways - The Way To Fly
User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14131 posts, RR: 62
Reply 18, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 3260 times:

Quoting Gman94 (Reply 11):
You may not agree with Australians fighting in WWI, but you should look at this way. Germany declared way on France, the Schlieffen plan meant that the Germans had to go through Belgium which brought Britain into the war due to an alliance between us and the Belgians. I also believe that we would of declared war on Germany if they had not invaded Belgium and gone straight for France due to the Entente Cordialle treaty between Britain and France. The result of this would of been the Empire countries, what we would now call the commonwealth declaring war on Germany and coming to defence of a fellow member much like the NATO alliance would do today, an attack on one is an attack on all. Also if Australia had been threatened, Britain and other countries of the Empire would of certainly sent forces to the Pacific region to help Australia.

Once one country declared war on another the die was cast, all sorts of alliances and pacts came into play that brought all sorts of countries into WWI.

Don´t forget about Germany´s blanc cheque towards Austria, which promised them assistance in whatever they were doing. Austria attacked Serbia, Serbia was an Ally of Russia, Russia declared war on Austria and Germany (being allies), Russia, being again an ally of France. Germany tries to beat France first by executing the Schlieffen plan, invading neutral Belgium on the way, while the Russians are still mobilising, in the hope to get a quick victory in the West before having to take on Russia. The German offensive gets stuck in Northern France and the central powers find themselves in a two front war. Now Russia desperately needs supplies from her western Allies, but Turkey, allied with Germany and Austria controls the Dardanelles. In my opinion the execution (on staff level) of the Gallipoli campaign ranks with the disastrous battles of the Somme (100.000 allied dead in 24 hours). Besides a multitude of cock ups, like the British withdrawing their heavy warships, which were supposed to give heavy artillery support to the landing parties after a German submarine was rumoured to be in the area, landing troops on the wrong beaches, not having dedicated landing craft etc., the ANZAC troops also had the bad luck in meeting with troops commanded by one of the most capable Turkish generals, Kemal Pasha. He was the one who later overthrew the Ottoman government and was later known as Kemal Atatürk.

Jan


User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3258 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 13):
There was massive enthusiasm in both Australia and New Zealand for the war, and the men joined in their thousands. It's probably true that Britain expected them to send soldiers to fight for the "mother country" as it was seen, but I don't think there was coercion involved. It just wasn't necessary.

Absolutely right. At first there was a huge amount of enthusiasm, yet like almost everywhere else in the world (including Germany) - things got very very very bad along with public opinion of the war. If anything, that serves as another reminder that war, no matter how joyfully entered or how just and correct it's cause is perceived to be - things change. Thus that is another reason why we must be absolutely vigilant to ensure the whole thing doesn't happen again.

At a government level I'm certain there was pressure to join the war. The UK basically wanted Australian doctors, farmers, accountants, government employees, labourers, builders etc to go away and fight in a war that they would probably die in. The potential economic calamity this would cause was not lost on the Australian government. Sure, Imperial furver was at a fever pitch - but to chop the legs of (what was then) a rising primary industrial economic power took some coercion.

For the public there was a huge amount of advertising - it was the same in the UK. Men were given the impression that if they did not fight they were cowards, women were compelled to pressure their men to join up, the Germans were demonised, and the whole war was presented to be a jolly fine jaunt through the old country - complete will Gerry-hunting and billy beef. As we have mentioned, the reality was quite different.

QFF


User currently offlineQANTASforever From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3249 times:

Quoting Yukimizake (Reply 16):
If you really want to look back in anger then who do you blame? The Australian gov't?, the British gov't, British generals? - it's pointless to look at it this way. Anzac day is to remember all of those Australians and New Zealanders killed in action, not to debate the merit of the causes of various campaigns.

I blame all of them. Perhaps my original comment wasn't clear enough - the Australians sent their troops to Europe under British command. Through their recklessness and incompetence the British placed the Australians in a morbidly dangerous situation. I understand the point of Anzac day is to remember those who died, but what I'm grappling with - is what is their legacy. What is it that we remember them for. Don't confuse this discussion for one of my republican tirades - I'm in no mood for an argument with you.

Quoting Gman94 (Reply 17):
You may not of noticed but the British forces in the Pacific region were beaten by the Japs and we had a few problems on our own doorstep, we were in no shape to to send much help other then the Navy which was still the biggest and most powerful in WWII.

I did - Australian troops were still fighting in Europe while the Japanese invasion force was making its way south through PNG. But that is not the point. What I was saying was that the UK and Australian governments are both to blame for blunders in the official organisation of, and the execution of the mutual defence of their respective nations.

QFF


User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14131 posts, RR: 62
Reply 21, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3241 times:

Qantas,

What do you think what happened in Germany? Troop trains with chalk drawings like "Wiedersehen auf dem Boulevard" etc. The guys signed up in masses, because everybody wanted to see some action, everybody believed the war would be over by Christmas.

Then the stupid ideas of respective generals, like the French insisting that frontal attacks were the only right way to fight for a French soldier, eveything else was cowardly, even in the face of dug in machine guns.
The British, sending their soldiers into battle just with 10 rounds in their Lee Enfields, telling them use the bayonet as the primary weapon. Mass attacks one hour after the artillery bombardment in walking pace. The soldiers were not allowed to run or use today´s tactics of moving from cover to cover. They had to walk in the open, keeping 5 yards from each other.
Then the lousy conditions British soldiers lived in in the trenches (the German trenches were usually much more comfortable and had proper dug outs for the soldiers to sleep in). The reason was the thinking of the generals, that if the dug outs and trenches were too comfortable, the soldiers would be reluctant to leave them for attacks.
WW1 for example, terrified France until well into WW2. They lost most of the males of the WW1 generation. There was a huge surplus of women after the war. The French military went from a purely offensive way of thinking into a purely defensive one.

Jan


User currently offlineAerorobnz From Rwanda, joined Feb 2001, 7342 posts, RR: 13
Reply 22, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3238 times:

Quoting QANTASforever (Reply 20):
I understand the point of Anzac day is to remember those who died, but what I'm grappling with - is what is their legacy. What is it that we remember them for. Don't confuse this discussion for one of my republican tirades - I'm in no mood for an argument with you.

On this issue I fully understand where you are coming from. It's such an integral part of Antipodean culture and belief system that when you try and trace your finger back as to Why we do what we do, the waters get very clouded and confusing at times.
It's our equivalent in National Importance to something like the Declaration of Independence is to the US or the French Revolution is to France.
It's an event that as completely changed and shaped our Countries and the way we think from then on, so it is important to be able to relate it to you personally.


User currently offlineDeskPilot From Australia, joined Apr 2004, 767 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3236 times:

My view is that all war/conflicts/etc are tragic and a waste of lives.

I visited the Australian war graves in Thailand in the early 90's. What saddened me the most was that these men were younger than me and never had a chance to live a full life. However, I’m guessing that they died, as did the ANZACS at Gallipoli, fighting what they thought was a just war. It’s not for me to judge what they did, or their reasons for going. I wasn’t in their shoes – I haven’t had to fight in war and I hope to God my son never has to either.

So, to me ANZAC day, remembrance day, etc, is about recognising the sacrifice they made, and their will to overcome a bad situation. Back in Thailand, a trip to the camps at the River Kwai brought home the later.

I have the utmost respect for the ADF. I don’t agree with a number of conflicts they’ve been sent to fight in by various Australian governments, but the ADF has always performed it duty as directed.

So, on April 25th, as on the 11th November, I take time out to remember the ADF members who lost their life in all conflicts.



By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
User currently offlineQANTASFOREVER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (9 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3233 times:

You're right Aerobnz. I've just been looking at the Returned Services League website - they seem to take the position that it was instrumental to our two nations forming some sense of nationhood - that it introduced us to the dealings of nation to nation warfare. In an Australian context, it also served to blast away petty disagreements between states and promote federal unity. It was a defining moment, and was instrumental to the formation of our national characters. For this reason I believe a special day of remembrance is warranted. Gallipolli was our moment of realisation - where we saw as nations the futility of empire, and started to consider ourselves Australiand and New Zealanders rather than "subjects" of you-know-who.

QFF


25 Bill142 : This is true. The British could have shelled the Turkish till there were no more. Instead they tested them to see their capabilities, this lead the T
26 DeskPilot : And yet QFF, Australian troops happily marched off to support UK again in September 1939 ! My view was the Pacific war was different, that was in our
27 JGPH1A : The scenarios are fundamentally different - the victims of Port Arthur, Bali etc were just victims in the wrong place at the wrong time - they could
28 QANTASforever : That was absolutely different. That was a war against tyrrany and facism, not a war exclusively participated in out of respect to the UK. In my belie
29 Banco : Just on this bit, be slightly careful. Knowing the situation of both sides in later years isn't the same as those who had to take the decision at the
30 ScarletHarlot : The best way I can relate to this is to tell you what I have in the trunk of my car ready to go to the post office. It's a parcel full of goodies for
31 LTBEWR : I have been in both Australia and NZ and seen their respective national memorials to all of their citizen-soldiers killed in all wars and police actio
32 Bill142 : True, the British did not have any idea of the Turkish ammo situation. But had they known the landing of troops at what is now anzac cove may not hav
33 Aerorobnz : Cheers to that - Outside of Europe that often goes unnoticed... Because of our small size we have lost proportionally more men in the great wars than
34 QANTASFOREVER : They were there in the name of another country - they died for a foreign cause. They did not die for Australia, they died for a pathetic and insignif
35 DeskPilot : WW2, excluding the Pacific, was a foreign cause. Germany was not a threat to Australia's sovereignty. A quick search found this…. “..The British
36 787 : They put their lives on the line and died because of it. They did it for the country they are from, represent, and serve. Why is that so hard to under
37 QANTASFOREVER : But the cause was completely justified - that is the distinction between the two world wars in my opinion. Eek gad I'm glad things have changed. Shee
38 Sydscott : The key to commemorating on ANZAC Day is RESPECT; Respect - for those who have died fighting in wars that this country has, rightly or wrongly, commi
39 DeskPilot : Agree in respect WW1, in that a couple of small events lead, through the treaty alliance system, to a world war. Again, regardless of events, Austral
40 WhiteHatter : There is also the issue of political and legal linkage. If Britain had been defeated and invaded, then there was a potential scenario where Australia
41 QANTASforever : To whom do you refer? If you are talking about the soldiers at Gallipoli then I'm afraid I cannot agree with you as they didn't do anything to secure
42 Bill142 : They died for the British. The British needed to regain communications with Russia and a supply line and to do this was to gain control of the Darden
43 DeskPilot : I thought it was from a Russian request for assistance to relieve pressure from a Turkish attack in the Caucasus.
44 Banco : On the same basis you could say that the British died for the Belgians or the French. WWI wasn't a war of conquest by the Allies.
45 DeskPilot : Withthe focus on the upcoming ANZAC day, let now forget the 80,000+ Turkish troops who died protecting their own land. If anything good came out of th
46 Virgin744 : One thing that hasnt been mentioned is that those senior people in the UK who were instructing this hopeless invasion were led by none other than...Br
47 DL021 : I stopped reading the posts after the 10th one or so. What QFF seems to not understand is that the times were different and most Australians and New Z
48 MD11Engineer : The reason the ANZAC troops were used for the middle East, Bosporus and Northern Africa (together with troops from India), was simply that shipping th
49 GDB : That's the thing, QFF, you've 'become' an Aussie citizen correct? So, by 'becoming' a citizen of that nation, there is historical baggage, good and ba
50 DL021 : Let's not forget that point above The German possessions in the south Pacific were important to them, and they would not have had difficulty in approp
51 787 : Well, your previous words said otherwise. Well to me that shows no respect and thus trivializes it. Sorry but those were your words and not mine. I t
52 Sydscott : Our soldiers died defending the British Empire which was, at the time, still a very important alignment of countries. You should remember all our war
53 MD11Engineer : While the Kaiser was a blustering, sabre rattling idiot (partly deriving from his physical handicap, a crippled left arm, he always had to prove hims
54 Aerorobnz : That's no punishment or disrespectful by calling them civilians. I think it actually shows that they were more brave than a trained and 'sterilised'
55 Post contains links DL021 : Aerobonz....The citizen-soldiers of the ANZAC were trained. Whether they trained in Australia or Egypt doesn't really matter. Their bravery is what th
56 QANTASforever : I came to Australia when I was 4 years old. You think native-born Australians have no cultural baggage from their heritage? You might be interested t
57 DeskPilot : I disagree. I believe there is a recognition that this was a keys stage in Australia forging its own identity. I also believe that Australians also k
58 787 : Fine, you have respect for them but re-read what you have said. It really comes across far differently. Perhaps what you need to come to grips with i
59 DeskPilot : This is getting a little out of control. Can we leave it for the Australians' New Zealanders, Turks and others to remember the losses in this and oth
60 Sydscott : It wasn't belligerent. I will be making the trip to Turkey on the 100th anniversary to see for myself where 2 of my ancestors died in our countries n
61 Sydscott : I agree. There is no need to make this personal on QFF and it doesn't matter which flag he flies. Lock it up.
62 787 : Lock it up? Why? Interesting to see ones views. Perhaps this sentence was the tough one that a few of us had a hard time with. The lack of gratitude f
63 QANTASFOREVER : You are really really starting to get on my nerves, and not just as a result of this thread. You skirt around the rules of this forum so damn well, w
64 VHXLR8 : Whatever the cause or reasoning of the war might have been, the soldiers who fought and/or died in it were not privy to any of this reasoning; they w
65 Bill142 : When did I say they didn't? You could be right. They way I've always understood it, is that the British needed to regain commucations with the Russia
66 QANTASforever : Read what I've written. I'm just being logical about this - if you disagree with me and believe that the Anzacs were fighting for Australia, or for t
67 MD11Engineer : Correct, the Turks were attacking Russia in the Caucasus and at the same time threatening British lines of communication in the Middle East by pushin
68 DL021 : That sounds a bit arrogant to think that they are all wrong and you alone are correct. Perhaps you meant it differently? I thouth you were trying to
69 Post contains images QANTASforever : What I meant was that from what I see in the popular media, I do not believe Australians clearly understand the true nature of the events surrounding
70 787 : Well QantasFor, I would have to say about your comments that your words in your opening thread speak for themselves re: your stated feelings on ANZAC
71 Bill142 : I don't think that Honoring the soldiers who served is the issue here. The cause as to why we were sent there seems to be. There are also theories ci
72 DL021 : To clarify what I said, the Germans would undoubtedly have moved on the Pacific and Indian Ocean territories had they won the war, and the terms of a
73 QANTASFOREVER : On the contrary. I think people can quite clearly see that the original post I made in opening this thread was completely open ended. I've formed an
74 MD11Engineer : Sorry about this very long post, it is an excerpt from General Sir John Hackett´s book "The Profession Of Arms". This chapter has been written mainly
75 DL021 : I understand. The entire matter is academic, as the Germans lost the war. However had they won there would have been little to stop them from and muc
76 787 : I am glad you are now compelled to honor them and feel this way and not the following way. As you said you "formed an opinion later as a result of wh
77 QANTASFOREVER : Please quote the full sentence: While I do not feel any gratitude, I do feel sorrow and regret. I do not believe that my position is contradictory in
78 787 : I don't think anyone thinks that. Why would you think they do? As I said it is an interesing topic. Thank you for sharing it.
79 VHXLR8 : As I said earlier, whatever the reasons behind the campaign in Turkey; the soldiers themselves were not part of this reasoning. They, as soldiers, we
80 QANTASforever : And that is exactly the conclusion I had arrived at. This whole thread was as a result of reading things in the popular media about how the soldiers
81 MD11Engineer : Where should they have gained their experience? Between the Crimean war of the 1850s and WW1, British campaigns were mostly colonial policing against
82 DL021 : Jan...well reasoned but here is the question and answer. you provide part of the answer... Plus the Spanish-American war where automatice weapons were
83 GDB : QFF, won't forget what I said? If you are so thin skinned, why raise a subject that you know is emotionally charged, especially with the agenda you so
84 Post contains links GDB : While the operation ANZAC Day is commemorating was a screw up, was it just another 'Lions led by Donkeys' episode? Or is the broad truth about WW1 Bri
85 Sydscott : Definitely more complex. Through the ranks of Generals, (and Admirals), some were more competent than others. The pressures that war exerts is always
86 DL021 : Truman did fire him while he was president. Yeah, but he was a master strategist and did not throw away the lives of his men. He also had the courage
87 MD11Engineer : You mean, as an example, the total defeat of the Prussian troops at Jena and Auerstedt, due to bone headed geriatric Prussian general staff trying to
88 Post contains links DL021 : ANZAC Day is tomorrow, the 25th of April. I consider it to be a day of honor for our longtime allies and friends in Australia and New Zealand. For tho
89 QANTASFOREVER : I'm not allowed to raise the subject now am I? How can I put this to you as clearly as possible: Mine were legitimate questions. I am legitimately co
90 QANTASforever : Okay, okay. Independent of what has been discussed already in this thread, allow me to ask you all a legitimate question. I've been watching media fro
91 Zeekiel : So much anger, for a day of rememberance. True to that fact. The ANZAC's were a cut above the rest and they proved their worth at Gallipoli and on the
92 DL021 : Please refer to a dictionary definition of sacrifice. from the Oxford English Dictionary sacrifice • noun 1 the practice or an act of killing an an
93 DeskPilot : In the 1915 view of Australians, this was a sacrifice for Australia. They were going off to fight the enemy, as perceived in 1915. There was the comm
94 QANTASforever : So, you're saying that Australians needed these men to go off and fight a foreign war on the other side of the world? I am still confused. People kee
95 QANTASforever : I know what a sacrifice is, I was asking how it pertains to Gallipoli. But your definition is interesting. Are we to believe that the allied invasion
96 Sydscott : Exactly. I can also refer to Admiral Lord Gambier at the Basque roads, Vice Admiral Sir John Duckworth at the Dardanelles and the list goes on. To cl
97 DeskPilot : QFF, read the first paragraph again from my prior post. It beleive it reconciles the two opposing views; sacrifice for us, and the tragic event. Simi
98 QANTASforever : I think that is a bit if a loose association. I don't think that millions commemorate the Anzacs for fighting for the British Empire (and by implicat
99 MD11Engineer : QFF, You make the same mistake many people make, this is looking at historical events with today�s hindsight and today�s political views. Ba
100 QANTASforever : Yeah, but I'm talking about modern events. Why is the modern media walking around talking about the sacrifices made at Gallipoli. They didn't die for
101 GDB : So, QFF, you've some bee in your bonnet about the UK, but won't say what. You are content, yet raise a touchy subject then get quite shirty when you g
102 ClassicLover : Before I start, I am living in Ireland - been here 4 days - but before that I've only ever living in Australia and was born there. Why would the medi
103 Post contains images QANTASFOREVER : It is a little more than a bee in my bonnet, but I believe I have the academic aptitude to separate these emotions from other discussions. I think yo
104 Springbok747 : True, the chances of Australia being invaded by Indonesia are very slim, but guess John Howard thinks it is a possibility..hehe. I don't think Austra
105 DL021 : Syd...outstanding quote. I had not seen that one yet, but it quite neatly sums the guy up. Thanks, but thats Oxfords definition. Sacrifice is the noun
106 787 : Seems to me that confusion reigns in Australia with some. Not sure what the confusion is, but honor, duty, and representing your country in the Common
107 Sydscott : The only way we would fight a major conflict was if we were given no choice in the matter. I'd say the war would come to us not the other way around.
108 VHXLR8 : QFF, thanks for the post regarding our 'exchange of opinions'. I too love a good argument, and also highly respect other's opinions, and the courage t
109 QANTASFOREVER : perspicuous /p@"spIkjU@s/ · adj. 1 (of an account or representation) clearly expressed and easily understood; lucid. 2 (of a person) expressing thin
110 AussieAMEgirl : War sucks...correct..glad we got that out in the open..(OBVIOUSLY) secondly...dont live in the past, whats done is done. If you (QANTASForever) dont l
111 Post contains images JGPH1A : Hehe - 'mung-bean' Oooh you're in for it now ! Cue 'rabid psycho hose-beast' QFF...
112 MD11Engineer : The Gallipoli campaign happened long before two events, which would in the end decide WW1. These two events were the Russian Revolution of 1917, whic
113 QANTASforever : Yay - a newbie to the discussion. 'You're going to love this...just love it.' I find it funny that in the same breath you deplore war and then use the
114 Post contains images DL021 : Vous pense que c'est possible? Is this a possibility or a theoretical idea based on having a utopian society? sort of....other than the weapons we we
115 QANTASFOREVER : As a bit of an update - anyone seen pictures of Gallipoli after the dawn service? These kids have no idea. Using gravestones as pillows as they slept
116 AussieAMEgirl : nah its not worth commenting on "dear"!
117 DeskPilot : Was there enough graves and gravesstones to go around for EVERYONE ? Otherwise, you're generalising. The BeeGees stuff was collectively boo'd - that
118 QANTASforever : For god's sake - what is your point? Have you seen the front page of Sydney's Daily Telegraph today? I've seen the picture on the front - and I'm app
119 AussieAMEgirl : I must say I agree with about the backpacker issue QANTASForever. I was rather disgusted this morning to hear John Howard defend them, as well as the
120 DeskPilot : Yes, QFF - I saw the shots and I was appalled with the rubbish - if I go somewhere and there is no bins, I take the rubbish home. However, my point i
121 AussieAMEgirl : Correction...for those concerned...I Didn't refer to "everyone" just was rather disgusted by John Howard's response. As was overheard at work here tod
122 QANTASFOREVER : DeskPilot - why are you defending these people? Of course I know that not everyone littered, but judging by the amount of trash that was left around t
123 DeskPilot : And I get th opinion you want to "tar everyone with the same brush". QFF & AussieAMEGirl, I am not defending those who have done the wrong thing, but
124 QANTASforever : I see a solemn and respectful ceremony followed by quiet deliberation. I do not see concerts, games of cricket, drinking competitions, camping trips
125 DeskPilot : I believe I've said a few times that I was disgusted with the rubbish and other items. However, I haven't judged all as responsible. Maybe John Howar
126 QANTASforever : Oh come on - don't be flippant. Of course I don't blame absolutely everyone - but I can blame an awful lot of people. And I know you know a lot of in
127 Wing : I would like to use this opportunity to honor the brave Turkish soldiers who gave their lives to protect their homeland under very hard conditions.At
128 DL021 : Wing...well said. I apologize for not mentioning the sacrifice and bravery of the Turks in that battle as well as the ANZACs. In a real way the memori
129 QANTASFOREVER : Wing, respectfully - I'm afraid I do not understand you. QFF
130 Wing : Quantasforever; Sorry I should give more detail on that. Most people say ANZAC's died in a war that they should not be involved in.And the Turkish sid
131 AussieAMEgirl : I agree Wing...well said mate
132 Post contains images Sydscott : You never know!!!!! How intelligent is our intelligence???? Nope don't read it. You might as well listen to Allan Jones to get your news if you read
133 QANTASforever : I'm not talking about reading it - I'm asking if you saw the picture? To compare Anzac commemorations with NYE in Sydney is ridiculous and offensive.
134 DeskPilot : QFF, read what Sydscott was sayng - he wasn't defending this at all, but pointing out a potential source of the problem based on people attending oth
135 Post contains images Sydscott : Way to go for quoting me out of context!!!!!! Ridiculous - no it isn't. Anzac day sees large numbers of Australian's gathering in the one place at th
136 QANTASFOREVER : It appears our expectations of the Australian people diverge quite significantly! Yes, I would. You were comparing the two events - you said that it w
137 Sydscott : Nowhere have I said it was acceptable behaviour or that it wasn'ta big deal. Again you are trying to read something into what I'm saying that simply
138 QANTASforever : Your lack of outrage signifies to me quite clearly that you consider what happened at Gallipoli to be acceptable. The fact is - I don't deem what hap
139 Sydscott : Why am I repeating myself??? It happens everywhere else so why wouldn't it happen at Gallipoli. I do not consider it acceptable to litter at all peri
140 QANTASforever : Because up until your most recent post you have been vague. Because I had thought that the Australian people were a little more respectful and would
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