Civics | Fast Facts File: Australia's involvement in World War I
The Gallipoli Campaign, also known as the Dardanelles Campaign, the Battle of Gallipoli, By late the war on the Western Front had become a stalemate; the Franco-British . The naïveté of the Allied planners was illustrated by a leaflet that was issued to the British and Australians while they were still in Egypt. Between Acceptance and Refusal - Soldiers' Attitudes Towards War (Australia) For a decade before , British government ministers had been attempting The precedents of Australian colonial forces serving the British in the .. of other dominions and British divisions, forming relationships with and. The spat between Australia and Britain over the “banning” of the families of the Country” in and “marched to war as the sons of Great Britain”, quick survey of the relationship between war and nationalism in Australia.
There is, therefore, relative to the size of the force, an almost intimidating lode of primary and secondary evidence.
1914 in Australia
One caution which this mass of evidence imposes is an awareness of the dangers of generalising. For example, the AIF is often represented as having been indifferent or hostile to organised religion, perhaps reflecting the apathy or antagonism of a large but unquantifiable minority of men in Australia before Whether this attitude changed or was confirmed during or as a result of the war, by exposure to military chaplains all civilian clergymen, who also volunteered remains to be established; if it ever can be.
There are a number of notable works. The first extensive expression of the Anzac legend can be found in The Anzac Book, edited on Gallipoli by Charles Bean using verse and art created by Australian and New Zealand soldiers on Gallipoli late in But it is important not to accept that Bean was merely a propagandist or a romantic.
He was often shy in speaking directly to its members or rather its non-commissioned members but he recorded vast quantities of observations over the entire war, filling over notebooks. Australian Soldiers in the Great War, first published in and rarely out of print since. As a pioneering work it has rightly inspired and informed other scholars and further studies have confirmed, refined or challenged its arguments.
It remains a starting point and a work of enduring value. Both are based on the scrutiny of the massive lode of evidence available on the AIF, including official sources and contemporary sources such as unit journals and magazines, but crucially including the rich resource of letters, diaries and memoirs preserved in Australian archives and memoirs.
They accepted military discipline when they considered it necessary but negotiated compromises and exceptions in ways characteristic of the AIF and in distinction to other British and dominion forces.
They regarded military service as a job with remuneration and limits, and adopted methods of negotiation and protest, including strikes.
It is, however, a question overshadowed by important epistemological and methodological issues.
BBC - History - World Wars: Australia in World War One
The Anzac legend remains such a powerful factor in the interpretation of the Australian experience of war that it may be difficult to distinguish between what it was and what contemporaries and Australians today would have preferred it to have been.
For example, homosexual sex is accepted now but was illegal a century ago.
- World War I: How Australia reacted to the outbreak of conflict
- Gallipoli Campaign
- The First World War
Its presence among AIF volunteers is accordingly hard to discern. Many were enthusiastic and idealistic; others volunteered in hopes of adventure, or simply to find a job was a year of severe drought, and many men had been thrown out of work. But no one knows exactly why any of them volunteered for the AIF. In fact, only about two fifths of eligible men donned uniform. The majority of Australian men of military age did not attempt to enlist, and did not serve.
This is more than the total number of volunteers for the AIF. About 50, men volunteered inbut in , the peak year of enlistments, with 36, the largest single monthly total joining in July So far as the defences go here and now in Australia, I want to make it quite clear that all our resources in Australia are in the Empire and for the Empire and for the preservation and security of the Empire.
Prime Minister Joseph Cook in a speech in Horsham, Victoria on August 1, As part of the British Empire, Australia sent a message to the British government on August 4,offering "20, men of any suggested composition": We shall pledge our last man and our last shilling to see this war brought to a successful issue.
Australian Labor Party leader Andrew Fisher, House of Representatives, August 3, Britain sent a reply on August 6,accepting Australia's offer of 20, troops and asking for them to be sent "as soon as possible".
Australia's help was also requested in the urgent seizure of a German wireless station in New Guinea: A telegram received from the British government on August 6, National Archives of Australia The acceptance of Australia's offer of troops saw an outpouring of newspaper coverage on the beginning of the war: Russia mobilised troops to prevent Serbia being crushed.
Australia in World War One
Germany declared war on Russia and, realising that France would support Russia, declared war on France as well. When Germany invaded neutral Belgium, Britain declared war on Germany. Japan, seeing the chance to seize German territory in China, also declared war on Germany. Bulgaria and Turkey sided with the Central Powers and soon most countries in Europe had become involved in the war.
When Britain declared war on Germany on 4 Augustmost Australians greeted the news with great enthusiasm. Volunteers rushed to enlist for an exciting war which was expected to be over by Christmas.
For Australia, as for many nations, the First World War remains the most costly conflict in terms of deaths and casualties. From a population of fewer than five million,men enlisted, of which over 60, were killed andwounded, gassed, or taken prisoner.
in Australia - Wikipedia
Most of the men accepted into the army in August were sent first to Egypt, not Europe, to meet the threat Turkey posed to British interests in the Middle East and the Suez Canal. During the early days of the campaign, the allies tried to break through Turkish lines, while the Turks tried to drive the allied troops off the peninsula.
Attempts on both sides ended in failure and the ensuing stalemate continued for the remainder of The most successful operation of the campaign was the evacuation of troops on 19 and 20 December, under cover of a comprehensive deception operation.
As a result, the Turks were unable to inflict more than a very few casualties on the retreating forces. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours. You, the mothers who sent their sons from far away countries, wipe away your tears.
Your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace.