Friday, May 5, 2017

Friday's Fulminations

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Anonymous said...

There seems to be some misunderstanding about our past relationship with Australia which is based on joint military adventures. This is largely a myth.

Boer war....the separate Colonies of Australia made contributions of men and material and in 1901 became an Australian army on federation. The Australians fought several campaigns with the Canadians, the New Zealanders fought alongside British regiments. Never did they fight together in fact there were always several hundred kilometres between them.

First world war.......the great ANZAC experiment lasted three years from late 1914 until 1917 when the last ANZAC division (ANZAC 2) which consisted of a NZ brigade and two British brigades was renamed as a British corp. The Australians had gone one way and we went another. The Australians fought closely with the Canadians and latterly with the emergent US army. The New Zealand division was a part of a British army many miles from the Australian centre of operations.

Second world war.......Although we shared convoys with the Australians to the middle east we never actually fought together as, once again the Australians and New Zealanders were hundreds of miles apart and under different commands. The only recorded time the anzacs fought together was in the mad scramble of the Greek retreat where units of different commands accidentally found themselves together. The Australians left the European theatre in 1943 because of the Japanese threat whereas we continued with the British army in Italy until cessation of hostilities. When the NZ Govt. decided to form a second NZ division to fight the the Japanese one would have thought that we would join our hardpressed Anzac allies in New Guinea, but no we went of and joined a US command in a rather pointless campaign on Green Island ( 10 KIA).

Korea........NZ 16th Field regiment (artillery) was a part of the British Commonwealth division and one of 15 artillery regiments, none of which were Australian, to serve in with the division. However, once again the Australian infantry (3RAR) worked closely with and made several coordinated attacks with the Canadians (Princess Patricia’s Light Infantry) now has to wonder if the Canadians are not the inheritors of the Anzac mantle.

Vietnam......the first gazetted ANZAC cooperation since 1915. Well nearly, the Australian army did not want us and we initially sent a four gun Battery which is about as much use as three legged racehorse. It was not until the two infantry companies were integrated into RAR battalions that we were grudgingly accepted as a useful contribution but not as equal partners.

The various political parties on both sides of the pond trot out the ANZAC myth when is suits them but it means nothing and has no bearing on political decisions.

Jobson Growth said...

HooRAY! Give that man a medal.

The ANZAC legend has as much credibility as the legends of Speewah. It is a handy tool for the politician to look patriotic, the old soldier to look heroic, and for the media to beat the drums of war.

ANZAC Day was once a solemn commemoration of wasted lives, now it is a day of chest beating and boasting, mostly by people who have thankfully been untouched by war.

Noel said...

Given recent and past treatment of Kiwis in Australia it glaringly obvious that the ANZAC spirit only applies to the past.

Disagree with the PM and his patronising we shouldn't recipricate.
Sorry it's the only way Joe Aussie will show some empathy. At the moment most are crying crocodile tears and until there own over here a treated the same only then will they put pressure to equalise the relationship.