‘ANZAC’ Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.

‘ANZAC’ is the acronym for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.

Anzac Day is one of Australia and New Zealand’s most important national commemorative occasions. It marks the anniversary of the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War.

It further commemorates all Australians and New Zealanders

“who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations”

and

“the contribution and suffering of all those who have served”.

Anzac Cove in 1915.

On the morning of 25 April 1915, the Anzacs set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open the Dardanelles to the allied navies. The objective was to capture Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey), the capital of the Ottoman Empire, and an ally of Germany.

The Anzacs landed on Gallipoli and met fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders. Their plan to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months.

At the end of 1915, the allied forces were evacuated. Both sides suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. By the time the campaign ended, more than 130,000 men had died: at least 87,000 Ottoman soldiers and 44,000 Allied soldiers, including more than 8700 Australians. Among the dead were 2779 New Zealanders, about a sixth of all those who had landed on the peninsula.

News of the landing on Gallipoli and the events that followed had a profound impact on Australians at home. The 25th of April soon became the day on which Australians remember the sacrifice of those who had died in the war.

The Anzacs were courageous and although the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives, the Australian and New Zealand actions during the campaign left us all a powerful legacy.

What does Anzac Day mean today? 

With the coming of the Second World War, Anzac Day also served to commemorate the lives of Australians and New Zealanders who died in that war. The meaning of Anzac Day today includes the remembrance of all Australians killed in military operations.

The Anzacs were courageous and although the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives, the Australian and New Zealand actions during the campaign left us all a powerful legacy.
With the coming of the Second World War, Anzac Day also served to commemorate the lives of Australians who died in that war. The meaning of Anzac Day today includes the remembrance of all Australians killed in military operations.

Anzac Day remembrance takes two forms. Commemorative services are held at dawn – the time of the original landing in Gallipoli – across the nation. Later in the day, ex-servicemen and women meet to take part in marches through the major cities and in many smaller centres. Commemorative ceremonies are more formal and are held at war memorials around the country.

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One comment

  1. Lest we (truly) Forget.

    I often times wonder if Australia in this day and age could again muster up three…and then five Divisions – (WW1 then WW2 respectively) – of 60,000 fully kitted voluntary enlistees per Division…before the need to conscript became necessary to reinforce their losses.

    The largest voluntary standing land armies of both World conflicts….without even the additional consideration of the voluntary mechanised Battalions, and the many, many, many thousands of voluntary founded Naval and Air Force personnel.

    With our new found metrosexuals and hipsters of this era, they would be demanding a score of Workplace Health and Safety Officers to accompany them as they dashed up the beach of Gallipoli Cove, or beat their way across the Kokoda Track.

    We will Remember Them…. is truly appropriate, given their voluntary status as Enlistees.