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Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

Article about: A little off topic here but I have a friend who was in the British Army, several Iraq and Afghan tours later he left. Now he does 'merc' work as anti-piracy cruise ship security in the Med.

  1. #11

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    A little off topic here but I have a friend who was in the British Army, several Iraq and Afghan tours later he left. Now he does 'merc' work as anti-piracy cruise ship security in the Med. Definitely beats shuttling VIPS around Kabul in an up-armoured Landcruiser.

    I think once the Somali lads in their fragile little skiff get a few rounds from a GPMG over the bow they decide to call it a day.

  2. #12

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    G'Day Grant,
    I too am sorry to learn about your Mate.
    But dont let your grief and anger,sully the reputation of the men who fought in the actions of the title of this thread.
    Remember, a lot of overseas people thought and still think that Australia is just a pimple on the arse of the world,The actions youve listed with the exception of Darwin,showed the world that we could hold our own and we dont need them to protect us.
    You say that these conflicts were used as examples of poor leadership, pandering to politics and contempt of your troops in your time,they were very different times then,so Good on the military for learning from previous mistakes and attempting to rectify any shortcomings,as long as they learn it can only be better.
    We are a young nation,and these conflicts forced us to mature,probably before we were ready,the men who willingly went to their deaths,wernt thinking about the Government and the media.They were thinking of protecting their family and their nation.
    You might not agree with what ive said,and you probably have seen more "Action" than i will ever see.
    But i respect you as much as i respect the former diggers.Thats what makes us Aussies,dont forget that Mate.
    Cheers Mick

  3. #13
    ?

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    These places were where good men persevered inspite of poor leadership, polotics and the arrogance and contempt of their officers.
    Their mettle was tested and proved superior. A thing to be truely proud of.
    If that be obsession then that is a good thing. Being proud of ones own is a fine thing.

  4. #14

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    Gday all,
    To me the the Gallipoli campaign was where Australia as a nation was forged.Australia's young men stood with the Empire and proved to be the equal of all involved.Australia was now recognised by the old world.The later battles of the Western Front earnt the respect of these nation's.WW1 was more than just a conflict to Australians,it was a proving ground in which the "Australian character" and his legends were born.No Furfy.
    Kokoda,well this was a last ditched stand by a panicked Allied SWP Commanand carried out by a group of young boy's initialy in a time of confusion and peril for Australia.No-one at the time knew the intentions of the then unstoppable Japanese but the sealines of communication between Australia and the US had to be maintained at all cost's.The loss of Port Morsby would have jepodised this position and isolated Australia thus the US would have lost their staging point for future offensives.The battle of the Coral sea effectively eliminated the threat to Port Morsby by sea so the Japanese attempted an overland solution to their problem.The small but important campaign fought by Australian militia and later AIF forces held up and finaly defeted the Japanese (some 15000 in total) in some of the most inhospitable terrain on this planet and at a time when they had suffered few land defeats of any value.The failed Kokoda campaign (including the allied capture of Buna,Gona and Salanda) and the Guadalcanal battles then being fought saved Australia from isolation and possible invasion at a later date.
    The Australian victory at Milne Bay which took place during the Kokoda campaign was the first major victory by any allied force against the Japanese when a seabourne landing by the Japanese was destroyed on the beach.
    I see this campain as Australia's Agincourt,The few against the many in a fight for what was thought of at the time as do or die.In their actions we Australians are all proud regardless.
    These are only my opinions gents and others may beg to differ.
    Very sorry to hear about your mate greimers.
    Dave

  5. #15

    Exclamation Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    Hi Guys

    There is no doubt in my mind that Kokoda was Australias Thermopylae.

    There are difference however. Where the Greek Hoplites were elite well equipped troops facing the Persians.

    Our forces were initially poorly trained and poorly equipped Militia. However they lacked nothing when it came to fighting spirit. Their use of the track to mount a Fighting Withdrawal (one of the hardest phases of warefare) is a classic. Fortunately reinforcements from the AIF reached them in the nick of time.

    greimers is more then likely correct in his assertion that the Japanese might not have actually wanted to invade Australia. However, had they taken Port Moresby, just the threat of them invading Australia would have seen a vast amount of men and materials positioned in the North to prevent this and taken away valuable resources for battles elsewhere in the Pacific.

    A great debt is owed to the men who participated in that battle.

    Regards Dutchy

  6. #16
    ?

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    Same reason why Americans remember Pearl Harbor, Corregidor, and Market Garden, as well as D-Day, Iwo Jima and the Battle of the Bulge. Significant historical events that shaped our perception of the dangers and sweetened the ultimate victory. Of course, we do not commemorate Kasserine Pass or Hurtgen Forest, as some things are best forgotten, I suspect.

  7. #17

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    Im Australian and i like all of those campaigns, but i would say people focus on Gallipolli, Darwin and Tobruk and kokoda becase they are the ones you hear of the most. These are seen as our nations highest and greatest moments from stopping the Japs in Papua and stopping Rommel for a long time in Tobruk. We are a long way from the rest of the fight in Europe so these battles are our shinning star. The bettle with our blokes in Europe are in celebration but not as much as the four we all know.

    Morris

    - - Updated - -

    The hole Australia beating another nation is a David and Goliath situation

  8. #18

    Default Re: Why are Australians obsessed with Gallipolli, Kokoda, Tobruk and Darwin

    Gallipolli--26,111 Australian casualties, including 8,141 deaths
    Kokoda--Killed 5866,wounded 29,100
    Tobruk--559 killed, 2450 wounded, and 941 taken prisoner.
    Darwin--292 Dead

    Total for WW1 and WW2--100,000 Australians.

    Enough Said,
    Mick

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