Australia’s war history

Click here for all items related to: Australia’s war history What are the central elements of Australia’s involvement with war and how do we continually reinforce them? While Australians’ relationship with the Anzac tradition or myth is a key theme

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The bombing of Darwin, 75 years on: some alternative views

Honest History has been interested in the bombing of Darwin almost since we began the website, though our interest has extended to aspects that are not likely to be front and centre this week during the 75th anniversary events. Obviously,

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The Fall of Singapore, 75 years on: some alternative views

On Wednesday in Ballarat, Minister Tehan will attend a national service in Ballarat to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Fall of Singapore (15 February 1942) and all Australian prisoners of war. This should be an occasion also to take

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Cashen, Phil: Enlistments in the second half of 1916: background characteristics Part 2 – religion, units and service history

Phil Cashen ‘103. Enlistments in the second half of 1916: background characteristics Part 2 – religion, units and service history‘, Shire at War, 5 February 2017 We have often linked to the sterling work of Phil Cashen of the Shire

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Stephens, David: Cooking the (visitors) books: the Australian War Memorial struggles with statistics – again

David Stephens ‘Cooking the (visitors) books: the Australian War Memorial struggles with statistics – again’, Honest History, 7 February 2017 The article looks at the statistics in the Memorial’s Annual Report 2015-16 for real (flesh-and-blood) visitors to the Memorial and

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Crotty, Martin: In their footsteps? Anzac fun runs and the consumption of the past

Martin Crotty ‘In their footsteps? Anzac fun runs and the consumption of the past’, Honest History, 7 February 2017 The author, a fun runner, describes some Anzac-themed running events and what they say about the current desire of some of

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In their footsteps? Anzac fun runs and the consumption of the past

Martin Crotty* ‘In their footsteps? Anzac fun runs and the consumption of the past’, Honest History, 7 February 2017 Running for fun and Anzac I am an historian of Australia at war, a frequent commentator on the way Australia commemorates

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Bown, Sharon: One Woman’s War and Peace

Sharon Bown One Woman’s War and Peace: A Nurse’s Journey in the Royal Australian Air Force, Exisle Publishing, Wollombi, NSW, 2016 In 1999, idealistic 23-year-old Registered Nurse Sharon Bown left her comfortable family life in Tasmania and joined the Royal

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A personal view of war and peace (review of Sharon Bown)

‘A personal view of war and peace’ (review of Sharon Bown), Honest History, 7 February 2017 Pamela Burton* reviews One Woman’s War and Peace: A Nurse’s Journey in the Royal Australian Air Force by Sharon Bown This is an introspective

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Cooking the (visitors) books: the Australian War Memorial struggles with statistics – again

David Stephens ‘Cooking the (visitors) books: the Australian War Memorial struggles with statistics – again’, Honest History, 7 February 2017 ‘There has always been an element of myth-making and myth-peddling in the Memorial’s work; it should not extend to its

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Rushbrook, Peter: Lest We Forget: the Kapooka tragedy 1945

Peter Rushbrook ‘Lest We Forget: the Kapooka tragedy 1945‘, History of Education Review, vol. 37, no. 1, 2008, pp. 48-55 (pdf made available by author) This article explores an incident that raises questions relating to the making and unmaking of

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Babkenian, Vicken: Gladys Berejiklian, the Great War, Gallipoli and the Armenian Genocide

Vicken Babkenian ‘Gladys Berejiklian, the Great War, Gallipoli and the Armenian Genocide‘, Independent Australia, 30 January 2017 Marks the election of Australia’s first premier of Armenian ethnicity. Ms Berejiklian’s grandparents were among those liberated by Allied forces in 1918, surviving

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McDonald, Neil with Peter Brune: Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent

Neil McDonald with Peter Brune Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent, NewSouth, Sydney, 2016 Chester Wilmot (1911–1954) was a renowned Australian war correspondent, broadcaster, journalist and writer. Covering the first triumphant North African battles of Bardia,

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Shield, John: Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent (review of McDonald with Brune)

‘Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent‘, Honest History, 12 January 2017 John Shield* reviews Valiant for Truth: The Life of Chester Wilmot, War Correspondent, by Neil McDonald with Peter Brune There is a lovely sequence in

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Silent Centenary: Australian voices questioning the war of 1914-18

Our regular correspondent, singer-songwriter, Tony Smith, has sent us a CD wrangled by himself and musical and poetical colleagues. It is called ‘Silent Centenary: Australian voices questioning the war of 1914-18’. It includes a mixture of sung songs, recited poems,

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Mein Smith, Philippa: The ‘NZ’ in Anzac: different remembrance and meaning

Philippa Mein Smith ‘The “NZ” in Anzac: different remembrance and meaning‘, Journal of First World War Studies, vol. 7, 2016, pp. 1-19 This article examines differences of emphasis in Australia and New Zealand in the rituals of Anzac Day, the

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Stanley, Peter: Review of The Holocaust: Witnesses and Survivors at the Australian War Memorial

Peter Stanley* ‘Review of The Holocaust: Witnesses and Survivors at the Australian War Memorial’, Honest History, 13 December 2016 The opening late last month of a new permanent display at the Australian War Memorial, The Holocaust: Witnesses and Survivors, is

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Scates, Bruce & Melanie Oppenheimer: The Last Battle: Soldier Settlement in Australia, 1916-1939

Bruce Scates & Melanie Oppenheimer The Last Battle: Soldier Settlement in Australia, 1916-1939, Cambridge University Press, Melbourne, 2016 When Australian soldiers returned from the First World War they were offered the chance to settle on “land fit for heroes”. Promotional

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Settling for less (review of Scates and Oppenheimer)

‘Settling for less’ (review of Scates and Oppenheimer), Honest History, 13 December 2016 Michael Piggott* reviews The Last Battle: Soldier Settlement in Australia, 1916-1939 by Bruce Scates and Melanie Oppenheimer At last the book is out. Its official genesis dates

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What Honest History read and reviewed during 2016: a round-up of book reviews (and reviewers)

‘What Honest History read and reviewed during 2016: a round-up of book reviews (and reviewers)’, Honest History, 13 December 2016 The Honest History team gets to read a lot of books during a year and we are getting more and

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (19) The 1916 coal strike

The Divided Sunburnt Country series ‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (19): The 1916 coal strike’, Honest History, 13 December 2016 ‘The strikes and upheavals, political and industrial, we see around us are the manifestations of a deliberate policy which aims at destroying

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Daley, Paul: The Armenians and the Warlpiri: two genocides that sparked a pilgrimage to the outback

Paul Daley ‘The Armenians and the Warlpiri: two genocides that sparked a pilgrimage to the outback‘, Guardian Australia, 8 December 2016 Describes the journey of two Armenian priests into Warlpiri country. The visit was organised by Judith Crispin, who has

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National Film and Sound Archive: Melbourne Time Capsule: Marvellous Melbourne: Swanston and Collins Streets

National Film and Sound Archive ‘Melbourne Time Capsule: Marvellous Melbourne: Swanston and Collins Streets‘, NFSA website A marvellous two minute point-of-view film from a tram trundling through Melbourne in 1910 (date picked exactly by our HH guru before he saw

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Minister releases preliminary results of study into veterans’ suicide; but are priorities still skewed?

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Dan Tehan (with Health Minister Ley) has released preliminary results of a study of suicide by Australian veterans. Key findings are as follows: ● there were 292 deaths by suicide among people with at least one

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Australian War Memorial opens permanent display on Holocaust

The Australian War Memorial has opened a permanent display on the Holocaust. (SBS report.) The exhibition, The Holocaust: Witnesses and Survivors, builds on the memories of 30 000 Holocaust survivors who made their homes in Australia after World War II.

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (18): The Prime Minister is determined to carry on

The Divided Sunburnt Country series ‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (18): The Prime Minister is determined to carry on’, Honest History, 26 November 2016 The referendum (plebiscite) had been held on 28 October. Prime Minister Hughes was the guest of

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Braithwaite, Richard Wallace: Fighting Monsters: An Intimate History of the Sandakan Tragedy

Braithwaite, Richard Wallace Fighting Monsters: An Intimate History of the Sandakan Tragedy, Australian Scholarly Publishing, Melbourne, 2016 Only six escapees survived the Sandakan death marches of 1945 in North Borneo, the worst atrocity ever inflicted on Australian soldiers. 1787 Australian

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At war with the Braithwaites (review of Braithwaite, Fighting Monsters)

‘At war with the Braithwaites’, Honest History, 23 November 2016 Peter Stanley reviews Richard Wallace Braithwaite, Fighting Monsters: An Intimate History of the Sandakan Tragedy Around the end of the 1960s the twenty-year-old Richard Braithwaite, then a university student, wore

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Shield, John: Top End Anzackery: an illustrated review note (featuring a mouse who flys a Spitfire)

Shield, John* ‘Top End Anzackery: an illustrated review note (featuring a mouse who flies a Spitfire)’, Honest History, 22 November 2016 Re-enactment, 74th anniversary of Darwin bombings, 2016 (Defence department) In 2012, the 70th Anniversary of the Bombing of Darwin

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Green, Jonathan: Why must a war define us? Honest History highlights reel

Green, Jonathan ‘Why must a war define us?‘ ABC The Drum, 24 April 2014 (Honest History highlights reel) Over the last three years Honest History has tried to collect significant pieces written about Australia’s relationship with war. We have commissioned

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The Conscription Conflict and the Great War (review of Archer, Damousi, et al)

‘The Conscription Conflict and the Great War’ (review of Archer, Damousi, et al), Honest History, 16 November 2016 Derek Abbott* reviews The Conscription Conflict and the Great War, edited by Robin Archer, Joy Damousi, Murray Goot and Sean Scalmer. See

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Archer, Robin, Joy Damousi, Murray Goot & Sean Scalmer, ed.: The Conscription Conflict and the Great War

Archer, Robin, Joy Damousi, Murray Goot & Sean Scalmer, ed. The Conscription Conflict and the Great War, Monash University Publishing, Melbourne, 2016 Collection with articles by the editors, Douglas Newton, Frank Bongiorno, John Connor and Ross McKibbin. While the Great

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Stanley, Peter: Three Great War histories review: was the slaughtering really worth it?

Stanley, Peter ‘Three Great War histories review: was the slaughtering really worth it?‘ Sydney Morning Herald, 12 November 2016 Honest History’s president reviews Victory at Villers-Bretonneux, by Peter FitzSimons, The Vanquished: Why the First World War Failed to End, 1917-1923,

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Reid, Richard: ‘That famous army of generous men’: some stories and reflections for Remembrance Day

Reid, Richard ‘“That famous army of generous men”: some stories and reflections for Remembrance Day‘, Honest History, 11 November 2016 An extended article about six men who fought in the Great War and the reflections their stories provoked in the

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Stephens, David: When a motley crew of Canberra stirrers protected the War Memorial from competition

Stephens, David ‘When a motley crew of Canberra stirrers protected the War Memorial from competition‘, Honest History, 11 November 2016 Tells the story of the Lake War Memorials Forum, a group which fought for two years to prevent the building

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‘The Call to the People of Australia’, Remembrance Day, 1951: highlights reel

‘” The Call to the People of Australia”, Remembrance Day, 1951: highlights reel’, Honest History, 11 November 2016 This Remembrance Day is the 65th anniversary of one of the stranger documents of early post-war Australia. Titled ‘The Call to the

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Stanley, Peter: AWM sixtieth anniversary: the Memorial and its people

Stanley, Peter ‘AWM sixtieth anniversary: the Memorial and its people, 11 November 2001‘, Australian War Memorial Today, Peter Stanley is Associate Director of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales Canberra, as well

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The Australian War Memorial is opened, 11 November 1941

The Australian War Memorial was opened 75 years ago today. The Australian War Memorial at Canberra, symbol of a young nation’s courage and sacrifice, was officially opened yesterday [began the report in the Canberra Times]. The impressive service of tribute

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When a motley crew of Canberra stirrers protected the War Memorial from competition

David Stephens ‘When a motley crew of Canberra stirrers protected the War Memorial from competition’, Honest History, 11 November 2016 Twelve years ago, some Canberra citizens conceived the idea of building in the city new war memorials, one for World

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Two years of commentary on the Australian War Memorial: from the Honest History archives

Rationale Critiquing the Anzac-centred received view of Australian history necessarily involves forensic examination of the work of our premier commemorative institution, the Australian War Memorial. The Memorial – rather surprisingly, in view of its interest in warlike matters – has

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‘That famous army of generous men’: some stories and reflections for Remembrance Day

Richard Reid* ‘”That famous army of generous men”: some stories and reflections for Remembrance Day’, Honest History, 11 November 2016 In early November 1993 I stood at 8.00 am in the misty cold of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission’s Adelaide

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (17): Three post-mortems on the first conscription referendum

The Divided Sunburnt Country series Note: No. 16 in the series was updated on 7 November to include a short speech by Michael McKernan on the impact of conscription in Jugiong, NSW, and a paper by Frank Bongiorno on why

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (16): Conscription miscellany – and mainstream avoidance

The Divided Sunburnt Country series ‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (16): Conscription miscellany – and mainstream avoidance’, Honest History, 4 November 2016 updated Update 16 November 2016: review of Archer, et al, ed., The Conscription Conflict and the Great War.

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (15): Final thunderous appeals, pro and con, on the eve of the conscription plebiscite

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (15): Final thunderous appeals, pro and con, on the eve of the conscription plebiscite 100 years ago’, Honest History, 27 October 2016 The Divided Sunburnt Country series Pro Prime Minister Hughes’s final appeal appeared in

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Possibly coming to a theatre near you: a movie about the Armenian Genocide

The Promise is a new movie about the Armenian Genocide. Directed by Terry George, starring Oscar Isaac, Christian Bale and Charlotte Le Bon, it has been expensive to produce and is now facing distribution issues in the United States, partly

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Stephens, David: ‘Awkward humility’: The speeches of the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson AO: Part II: Long bows, Holly Golightly and political baseball bats

Stephens, David ‘“Awkward humility”: The speeches of the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson AO: Part II: Long bows, Holly Golightly and political baseball bats‘, Honest History, 20 October 2016 This article continues our analysis of ten of Dr Nelson’s speeches from

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‘Awkward humility’: The speeches of the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson AO: Part II: Long bows, Holly Golightly and political baseball bats

David Stephens ‘“Awkward humility”: The speeches of the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson AO: Part II: Long bows, Holly Golightly and political baseball bats’, Honest History, 20 October 2016 In our previous article we looked at the structure, themes and content

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (14): No conscription! Facts for doubting boneheads

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (14): No conscription! Facts for doubting boneheads’, Honest History, 16 October 2016 The Divided Sunburnt Country series Here are some extracts from a piece in Direct Action for 14 October 1916 (just two weeks before

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‘Awkward humility’: The speeches of the Hon Brendan Nelson AO: Part I: Thrice more with feeling

David Stephens ‘“Awkward humility”: The speeches of the Hon. Dr Brendan Nelson AO: Part I: Thrice more with feeling’, Honest History, 11 October 2016 The received Australian view of war can be encapsulated in phrases like ‘Lest we forget’, ‘the

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Stephens, David: ‘Awkward humility’: The speeches of the Hon Brendan Nelson, AO: Part I: Thrice more with feeling

Stephens, David ‘” Awkward humility”: The speeches of the Hon Brendan Nelson AO: Part I: Thrice more with feeling‘, Honest History, 11 October 2016 The article analyses ten speeches from 2007 to 2016 regarding their structure, recurring themes and sets

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Honest History highlights reel: Nick Dyrenfurth’s Mateship: A Very Australian History

‘Honest History highlights reel: Nick Dyrenfurth’s Mateship: A Very Australian History’, Honest History, 11 October 2016  Nick Dyrenfurth’s book Mateship: A Very Australian History, was published by Scribe in 2015. This highlights reel picks out some key paragraphs. We used

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (13): DVA materials help children today debate conscription then

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (13): DVA materials help children today debate conscription then’, Honest History, 11 October 2016 updated Update 21 October 2016:  Queensland Government Anzac Centenary website has a useful summary on conscription in 1916. The Divided Sunburnt

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Honest History goes to the pictures: movie and TV reviews from the Honest History archives

Quite early in the Honest History project we realised that it was important to review movies and television series that came within our areas of interest. (We even explained why we were doing it.) Practically (due to resource limitations), this

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (12): The conscription battle hots up

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (12): The conscription battle hots up – 100 years ago’, Honest History, 30 September 2016 The Divided Sunburnt Country series Our intrepid researcher, Steve Flora, has worked his way through the National Library’s excellent Trove

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Dando-Collins, Stephen: The Hero Maker: A Biography of Paul Brickhill

Dando-Collins, Stephen The Hero Maker: A Biography of Paul Brickhill, Penguin Random House, Melbourne & Sydney, 2016 In The Hero Maker, award-winning historical author and biographer Stephen Dando-Collins exposes the contradictions of one of Australia’s most successful, but troubled, writers.

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Paul Brickhill: chronicler of bombers, busters and a great escape (review of Dando-Collins biography)

‘Paul Brickhill: chronicler of bombers, busters and a great escape’ (review of Dando-Collins biography), Honest History, 22 September 2016 John Myrtle* reviews The Hero Maker: A Biography of Paul Brickhill by Stephen Dando-Collins In the 1950s Australian-born Paul Brickhill wrote

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Koopman, Catharina: Campo 78 – the WWII Aussie camp in Abruzzo

Catharina Koopman* ‘Campo 78 – the WWII Aussie camp in Abruzzo‘, Dante Alighieri Society, Canberra, 29 June 2016 A review of the bilingual book, Campo 78: The Aussie Camp, by Gabriella Di Mattia (Accademia degli Agghiacciati, Sulmona, Italy, 2015). The

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Woods, Martin: Where are Our Boys? How Newsmaps Won the Great War

Woods, Martin Where are Our Boys? How Newsmaps Won the Great War, National Library of Australia Publishing, Canberra, 2016 A selection of maps from the National Library’s collection along with detailed explanatory text. The war produced more maps than any

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Fighting against the tide? (review of Martin Woods on World War I maps)

‘Fighting against the tide?’ (review of Martin Woods on World War I maps), Honest History, 15 September 2016 Peter Stanley reviews Martin Woods, Where are Our Boys? How Newsmaps Won the Great War The National Library of Australia, uniquely now

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Broinowski, Alison: Review note: What was all that about? Abe Forsythe’s Down Under

Broinowski, Alison ‘Review note: What was all that about? Abe Forsythe’s Down Under’, Honest History, 12 September 2016 A longer version of this article, taking up more general issues to do with Afghanistan, is here on Pearls and Irritations. A

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Stephens, David: We go to Rio: questioning received war history

Stephens, David ‘We go to Rio: questioning received war history’, Teaching History (History Teachers’ Association of New South Wales), 50, 3, September 2016, pp. 4-6 Pdf accessible here made available by courtesy of HTANSW, which holds copyright. Anzac may be

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (11): The Case for Universal Service

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (11): The Case for Universal Service‘, Honest History, 8 September 2016 The Divided Sunburnt Country series   When Prime Minister WM Hughes announced the first conscription referendum there was already plenty of literature in circulation

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Turnbull, Noel: Leadership in the face of Anzackery

Turnbull, Noel ‘Leadership in the face of Anzackery’, Noel Turnbull (blog) 29 August 2016 Another to add to our series ‘Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context‘. The author has been a journalist, academic, public relations consultant, and

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Diamadis, Panoyiotis: Friendships are based on truths: looking again at the crime of crimes (Hellenic genocides 1914-22)

Diamadis, Panayiotis ‘Friendships are based on truths: looking again at the crime of crimes’, Honest History, 30 August 2016 Analysis of recent press articles on the genocides of the indigenous Hellenes, Armenians and Assyrians of the Ottoman Turkish Empire. Two

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Friendships are based on truths: looking again at the crime of crimes (Hellenic genocides 1914-22)

Panayiotis Diamadis ‘Friendships are based on truths: looking again at the crime of crimes’, Honest History, 30 August 2016 In recent weeks, there have been three major pieces published in The Australian and the Daily Telegraph (Sydney) on the genocides

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Lord Northcliffe (egged on by Keith Murdoch) talks up the Anzacs after Pozieres: Honest History document

‘“These young giants from the furthest corner of the earth”: Lord Northcliffe (egged on by Keith Murdoch) talks up the Anzacs after Pozières: Honest History document’, Honest History, 30 August 2016 The document below is taken from The Sun (Sydney)

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From the Honest History archives: ‘Defining Moments’ at the National Museum of Australia (September 2014 and since)

Honest History has tracked the ‘Defining Moments’ project at the National Museum of Australia pretty much since it began. The project was an expression of the NMA’s claim to be ‘Where our stories live’ – ‘stories’ plural – which we

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (10): Prime Minister Hughes announces the first conscription referendum, 100 years ago today

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (10): Prime Minister Hughes announces the first conscription referendum, 100 years ago today’, Honest History, 30 August 2016 The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series Just after 3.53 pm on Wednesday, 30 August 1916, on a cold

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Hell No! We Won’t Go anti-conscription project goes to the Australian War Memorial

Australia’s Vietnam War had many facets, some of which we explored in our recent Honest History series. One of these facets, local Australian opposition to the war and to conscription, gets some coverage in the galleries at the Australian War

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Bach, Willy: A “kick in the guts”? A final look at Long Tan

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series Willy Bach ‘A “kick in the guts”? A final look at Long Tan’, Honest History, 30 August 2016 I am happy to say there were others who

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Butler, Richard: Nuclear disarmament – Australia’s profound and cynical failure

Butler, Richard ‘Nuclear disarmament – Australia’s profound and cynical failure‘, Pearls and Irritations, 23 August 2016 updated The author looks at Australia’s distinguished history in nuclear disarmament negotiations, before commenting on the recent decision by Australia to insist that there

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Moses, John: The fallacy of Presentism in Australian history

Moses, John ‘The fallacy of Presentism in Australian history‘, Honest History, 23 August 2016 The paper seeks to illustrate that historiography can be misused for promoting political agendas. It uses examples from Marxism-Leninism, particularly in the then East Germany and

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ABC Conversations with Richard Fidler: Liz Tynan on the secret history of Maralinga

ABC Local Radio ‘Liz Tynan on the secret history of Maralinga‘, Conversations with Richard Fidler, 9 August 2016 The ABC (actually Sarah Kanowski) talked to science journalist Elizabeth Tynan (49 minutes) about her book on the British nuclear tests at

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (9): Billy Hughes girds his loins for the conscription battle

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series On 31 July 1916, Prime Minister WM Hughes returned to Australia (Fremantle) after six months in Britain and Europe, where he had raised Australia’s profile in Allied war councils. He spoke at the Melbourne Town

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Viet Thanh Nguyen : Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series ________________________________ Viet Thanh Nguyen Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War, Harvard University Press, Cambridge MA, 2016 This is the final post in our series

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From the Honest History archives: People who turn up – nurses in Vietnam (June 2016)

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series ________________________ This week’s commemoration of Australia’s Vietnam War (hanging off the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan) underlines that history is made by those who

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Stephens, David: We need to talk about how we commemorate our wars in other people’s countries – and our own

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series _______________________________ David Stephens ‘We need to talk about how we commemorate our wars in other people’s countries – and our own’, Honest History, 18 August 2016 updated

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Broinowski, Richard: The Battle of Long Tan turns fifty – but not without a hitch

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series Richard Broinowski ‘The Battle of Long Tan turns fifty – but not without a hitch’, Honest History, 18 August 2016 updated An article by Mark Schliebs in

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From the Honest History archives: What happened to Australians after the Vietnam War (June 2015)?

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series _____________________________ Parades, recognition and misremembering Part of the narrative of Australia’s Vietnam War in the more than 40 years since our commitment ended has been that Australian

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (8): Jennie Scott Griffiths: ‘She Fought Where She Stood’

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series Victoria Haskins writes in her Anzac Her Story blog about Jennie Scott Griffiths, born in Texas in 1875, mother of ten children, newspaper editor, and anti-war campaigner in World War I Australia and just after

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From the Honest History archives: Agent Orange – Vietnam scourge of soldiers and civilians alike (March 2015, March 2016)

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series   Honest History has published a number of posts on the effects of Agent Orange, the chemical defoliant used by United States forces during the Vietnam War.

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Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: Honest History series

‘Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: an Honest History series’, Honest History, 15 August 2016 updated UPDATE 11.45 am FRIDAY: Still difficulties with access. UPDATE 6.00 AM THURSDAY: Restricted access to be allowed. STOP PRESS: Cancellation of

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From the Honest History archives: 1965-75 another Vietnam: unseen images of the war from the winning side (February 2016)

Australia’s Vietnam War – and keeping it in context: others in the series   This post shows the Vietnam War from the other side, with pictures (curated by Alex Q. Arbuckle for Mashable) by Vietnamese photographers of civilians, militia and

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Lamperd, Ruth: Families speak about military loved ones lost and how we failed them

Lamperd, Ruth ‘Families speak about military loved ones lost and how we failed them‘, Sunday Herald-Sun, 13 August 2016 The story reveals 41 military personnel and veterans died this year from suicide, the same as the number of Australians who

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From the Honest History archives: Hiroshima 1945; Managing Hiroshima

Update 31 August 2016: an article on The Millions website commemorating the 70th anniversary of the publication in The New Yorker of John Hersey’s long article Hiroshima. The anniversary of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings tends to creep up on

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (7): An overview of the 1916-17 conscription referenda

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series Michael Hamel-Green wrote in Green Left Weekly earlier this year an article called ‘When Australia voted no to war: the 1916-17 conscription referenda‘. The article is a useful brief introduction to the conscription struggle, an

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From the Honest History archives: Wounded and damaged soldiers then and now (November 2014)

Between the centenary of Fromelles and Pozières it seems appropriate to re-run a small collection Honest History put together late in 2014 on the physical effects of war on the men and women who fight it. The collection was provoked

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Piggott, Michael: Charles Bean’s legacy: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016

Piggott, Michael ‘“Charles Bean’s legacy”: UNSW Canberra conference, July 2016‘, Honest History, 2 August 2016 Update 6 August 2016: Peter Stanley, Honest History professor, Research Professor at UNSW Canberra, and a curator of the Bean exhibition, writes about the exhibition.

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Stanley, Peter: Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (6): ‘I didn’t raise my son to be a soldier’: pacifists

Stanley, Peter ‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (6): “I didn’t raise my son to be a soldier”: pacifists’, Honest History, 19 July 2016 This is an extract from Chapter 23 of John Connor, Peter Stanley & Peter Yule, The War

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From the Honest History archives: Alison Broinowski from October 2013 on Iraq 2003 and war powers reform

In the wake of the Chilcot report and recognising its relevance for Australia, we are re-running a perspicacious October 2013 piece from Alison Broinowski (vice president of both Honest History and Australians for War Powers Reform). Called ‘The streaker’s defence:

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Pennell, Catriona & Mark Sheehan: Official World War I memorial rituals could create a generation uncritical of the conflict

Pennell, Catriona & Mark Sheehan ‘Official World War I memorial rituals could create a generation uncritical of the conflict‘, The Conversation, 12 July 2016 A New Zealand-United Kingdom co-written article with some Australian input from Christina Spittel of UNSW Canberra

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Sherratt, Tim: Investigating the Hansard black hole

Sherratt, Tim ‘Investigating the Hansard black hole‘, Tim Sherratt: Research Notebook, 29 May, 10 July 2016 Not about the Budget black hole this time but about deficiencies in the ParlInfo search engine which countless people have used for research in

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (5): Catholic and Protestant schooling in Gippsland

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series This series focuses on the home front and asks whether issues at home were actually the big stories of the Great War, especially of the years 1916-18. We have seen already how national issues like

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Chilcot lessons for Australia as well as for powerful friends: Honest History miscellany

After seven years, Sir John Chilcot has reported on how the United Kingdom found itself in Iraq in 2003 and what it all meant. Chilcot’s report considers the actions and words of British Prime Minister Blair, United States President George

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Broinowski, Alison: What are we willing to fight for? (review of James Brown)

Broinowski, Alison ‘What are we willing to fight for?‘, Independent Australia, 3 July 2016 Honest History Vice President, Alison Broinowski, reviews Firing Line: Australia’s Path to War Quarterly Essay 62 by James Brown (Anzac’s Long Shadow) and expands upon the

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Sharpe, Matthew: Battle of the Somme and the death of martial glory

Sharpe, Matthew ‘Friday Essay: The Battle of the Somme and the death of martial glory‘, The Conversation, 1 July 2016 Commemorating the death today 100 years ago of over 19 000 British soldiers in a stupid venture. The generals learnt

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Öztürk, Özgür: Gallipoli campaign: a symbolic battleground

Öztürk, Özgür ‘Gallipoli campaign: a symbolic battleground‘, Geliboluyuanlamak (Understanding Gallipoli), 24 June 2016 This is an essay from a Turkish MA student on the blog of Dr Tuncay Yilmazer, a Turkish specialist in the Ottoman Empire and the Great War.

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Online Gem No. 10: Official histories of Australia at war

‘Online Gem No. 10: Official histories of Australia at war’, Honest History, 29 June 2016 Over the past century Australian governments have commissioned six separate series of official war histories, one for each of the major conflicts in which Australia

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Review note: Irish Easter Rising commemoration has lessons for Australia

‘Review note: Irish Easter Rising commemoration has lessons for Australia’, Honest History, 23 June 2016 I am just one-eighth Irish and by no means an expert in being Irish or in Irish history. But Honest History’s recent collecting of material

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (4): AIF enlistment starts to fall

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series One hundred years ago this month, as Anzac troops settled in on the Western Front – 600 had been killed by the end of June, enlistments in the AIF dropped to their lowest monthly total

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Brayley, Annabelle: Our Vietnam Nurses

Brayley, Annabelle Our Vietnam Nurses, Penguin, Sydney, 2016 When Australia joined the Vietnam War, civilian and military nurses were there to save lives and comfort the wounded. With spirit and good humour, they worked hard and held strong, even though

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Our Vietnam nurses’ stories should have been told before this (review of Brayley)

‘Our Vietnam nurses’ stories should have been told before this’ (review of Brayley), Honest History, 15 June 2016 Pamela Burton reviews Annabelle Brayley’s Our Vietnam Nurses. It is refreshing to read stories of heroism by those who travel to war

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James Brown’s Quarterly Essay, Firing Line: Australia’s Path to War, launching in June and July

James Brown’s Quarterly Essay, Firing Line: Australia’s Path to War, is launching during June and July in Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and Sydney. Dates from 16 June and bookings are required in all venues. Details. James Brown investigates Australia at war.

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RSL members miffed as PM mentions Soldier On

The ABC has a story today that some RSL members who heard the prime minister’s speech to the RSL National Conference were upset that he mentioned the work of veterans’ organisation, Soldier On. A reading of the PM’s speech shows

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Stephens, David: Keepers of the flame: making war memorial councils more representative

Stephens, David ‘Keepers of the flame: why do the people who control our war memorials look so different from the rest of us and why does this matter?’ Honest History, 7 June 2016 This article analyses the composition of the

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Dow, Aisha: Thousands face mental scars from modern war service

Dow, Aisha ‘Thousands face mental scars from modern war service‘, The Age, 5 June 2016 Like the generations before them, many of today’s returned soldiers are facing enormous challenges adapting back to everyday life. Forty-one Australians serving in the Australian

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A quick skim through some subscription journals: review note

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Cashen, Phil: Ireland, Empire and Irish-Australians

Cashen, Phil ‘Ireland, Empire and Irish-Australians‘, Shire at War, 4 June 2016 Microcosm in Yarram, Gippsland, Victoria, of tensions playing out across Australia. The article briefly outlines the movement towards Irish Home Rule, which stalled with the outbreak of war

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Keepers of the flame: making war memorial councils more representative

David Stephens ‘Keepers of the flame: why do the people who control our war memorials look so different from the rest of us and why does this matter?’ Honest History, 7 June 2016 Contents The Australian War Memorial Act 1980

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18: a new series from Honest History

‘Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18: a new series from Honest History’, Honest History, 7 June 2016 updated   Dorothea Mackellar in theatrical costume, 1918 (Wikimedia Commons/SLNSW) In 1904, Dorothea Mackellar, then aged 19, wrote her poem ‘My country’, which included

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (3): trade unions and Irish Australians

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series ___________________ By 1916 trade unions were pretty well established in Australia and so, for that matter, were people whose families came from Ireland. Catholics from Ireland probably tended to support the labour side in politics

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Hill, Anthony: For Love of Country

Hill, Anthony For Love of Country, Penguin Viking, Melbourne, 2016 At the close of the First World War, and after surviving a gas attack on the Western Front, Captain Walter Eddison moved his family from war-ravaged Britain to start a

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For love of country in war and peace (review of Anthony Hill)

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Moyal, Ann: Churchill and Gallipoli: a personal commentary

Moyal, Ann ‘Churchill and Gallipoli: a personal commentary‘, Honest History, 7 June 2016 Australian historian, Ann Moyal, knew Winston Churchill in his later life. Here she reflects on the letters Churchill wrote in 1915-16 to his wife, Clementine, and juxtaposes

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Churchill and Gallipoli: a personal commentary

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Divided sunburnt country: Australia 1916-18 (2): the War Census

The ‘Divided sunburnt country’ series ________________ In 1915 Australians took part in a special census, called the War Census, ostensibly to help organise the country’s resources for total war but effectively to prepare for the introduction of conscription for war

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Wolf, Charlie & Athol Bittley: AFL club songs ranked by ambition and boastfulness

Wolf, Charlie & Athol Bittley ‘AFL club songs ranked by ambition and boastfulness‘, Thermocow, 27 May 2016 Now that we’ve got your attention … This article on a comedy blog is just a bit of fun but go beyond the

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Divided sunburnt country (1): Australia 1916-18: recruiting in Gippsland

This post is by way of being a ‘soft launch’ for a new Honest History series. We are using the series to explore a crucial question: whether what happened at home in Australia during the Great War was actually more

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Honest History sends copy of Alternative Guide to Australian War Memorial to every member of Memorial Council

Which word should we use to describe what happened on 25 April 1915: ‘landing’ or ‘invasion’? Why do we refer to dead soldiers as ‘the fallen’? Does the ‘freedom’ we are said to have fought for in our many wars

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Babkenian, Vicken & Peter Stanley: Armenia, Australia and the Great War

Babkenian, Vicken & Peter Stanley Armenia, Australia and the Great War, NewSouth, Sydney, 2016; available electronically Australian civilians worked for decades supporting the survivors and orphans of the Armenian Genocide. 24 April 1915 marks the beginning of two great epics

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Babkenian, Vicken & Peter Stanley: ‘Armenian propaganda uses the ANZAC’ [sic]: A response

Babkenian, Vicken & Peter Stanley ‘”Armenian propaganda uses the ANZAC [sic]”: A response’, Honest History, 19 May 2016 The Australian Turkish Advocacy Alliance (ATA-A) website has published a review of Armenia, Australia and the Great War, by Vicken Babkenian and

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Who speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians? (review of Babkenian and Stanley)

‘Who speaks today of the annihilation of the Armenians?’ (review of Babkenian and Stanley), Honest History, 19 May 2016 Gareth Knapman reviews Armenia, Australia and the Great War by Vicken Babkenian and Peter Stanley ‘Who, after all, speaks today of

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Newton, Douglas: The Centenary of the Great War – and Anzac (five articles)

Newton, Douglas ‘The Centenary of the Great War – and Anzac‘, Pearls and Irritations, 7 May 2016 This overview article links to four others on changing war aims during the Great War and lost opportunities for peace 1914-18. As well

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Douglas Newton confronts the really important questions about war

‘Douglas Newton confronts the really important questions about war’, Honest History, 16 May 2016 David Stephens reviews five articles by Douglas Newton that take us ‘behind the scenes’ in the Great War. The piece also appears in John Menadue’s blog,

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Snyder, Timothy: Poland vs history (Australian comparisons not far beneath)

Snyder, Timothy ‘Poland vs history‘, New York Review of Books, 3 May 2016 updated In its exhibitions, the Museum of the Second World War [in Gdańsk, Poland] promised to tell the story of the 1930s and 1940s in an entirely

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ABC Radio National Big Ideas: Shell shock: a century of silence

ABC Radio National ‘Shell shock: a century of silence‘, Big Ideas, 25 April 2016 The affects and significance of shell shock have been underplayed for a century, according to Yale emeritus professor, Jay Winter. (Professor Winter is also associated with

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Their Great War and ours: the commemorative view from Europe

There was an interesting presentation at UNSW Canberra yesterday from Professor Oliver Janz of the Free University of Berlin. It brought out some differences between the way World War I is being commemorated in Germany, France and the United Kingdom.

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Frame, Tom, ed.: Anzac Day: Then & Now

Frame, Tom, ed. Anzac Day: Then & Now, NewSouth, Sydney, 2016 John Connor, Jeff Doyle, Tom Frame, Michael Gladwin, Jeffrey Grey, Carolyn Holbrook, Ken Inglis, Gareth Knapman, John A. Moses, Heather Neilson, Robert Nichols, Christina Spittel and Peter Stanley explore

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Honest History: Honest History’s Alternative Guide to the Australian War Memorial

Honest History ‘Honest History’s Alternative Guide to the Australian War Memorial‘, Honest History, 26 April 2016 updated Update 1 November 2016: the Alternative Guide has been downloaded 1672 times since Anzac Day although the War Memorial Council has said it

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Anzac Day then and now – and probably for the future (review of Frame anthology)

‘Anzac Day then and now – and probably for the future’ (review of Frame anthology), Honest History, 26 April 2016 Paddy Gourley reviews Anzac Day: Then & Now, edited by Tom Frame. This book has been produced by the Australian

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Across the sea to Ireland: Australians and the Easter Rising 1916 – highlights reel

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Review note: Vietnam – the war that made us what?

‘Review note: Vietnam – the war that made us what?’ Honest History, 26 April 2016 SBS showed a three-part series on the Vietnam War, Vietnam: The War that Made Australia (now on video), which had an unusually narrow focus and

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Alomes, Stephen: Our national folly: war romance and the Australian national imaginary

Alomes, Stephen ‘Our national folly: war romance and the Australian national imaginary‘, Anne-Marie Hede & Ruth Rentchsler, ed., Reflections on ANZAC Day: From One Millennium to the Next, Heidelberg Press, Heidelberg, Vic., 2010, pp. 89-105 (text made available by the

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Gilpin Faust, Drew: Two wars and the long twentieth century

Gilpin Faust, Drew ‘Two wars and the long twentieth century‘, New Yorker, 13 March 2015 Honest History just found this one but it is a useful comparison of the American Civil War and the Great War in terms of the

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Reynolds, Henry: Unnecessary Wars

Reynolds, Henry Unnecessary Wars, NewSouth, Sydney, 2016 ‘Australian governments find it easy to go to war. Their leaders seem to be able to withdraw with a calm conscience, answerable neither to God nor humanity.’ Australia lost 600 men in the

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101st anniversary of the Armenian Genocide: Honest History miscellany

‘101st anniversary of the Armenian Genocide: another April date that today’s Australians overlook’, Honest History, 6 April 2016 updated Update 5 November 2016: new material is in this book about killings at Izmit; a movie about the Genocide. _________________ The

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Invasion, massacre and the Queen’s uniform: Honest History miscellany

‘Invasion, massacre and the Queen’s uniform: Honest History miscellany’, Honest History, 4 April 2016 updated This little collection pulls together a few threads relating to the following: the event of 1788 and afterwards that some of us call ‘white settlement’

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Five Inside Stories and four Conversations: Honest History miscellany

‘Five Inside Stories and four Conversations: Honest History miscellany’, Honest History, 22 March 2016 updated Recent update on the Reef 20 April 2016: ABC report on the extent of bleaching, including map, showing particularly the extreme position in the northern

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Edwell, Penny: Review note: First World War Commemoration and Memory Conference, IWM North

Penny Edwell* ‘Review note: First World War Commemoration and Memory Conference, IWM North’, Honest History, 17 March 2016 Organised by the Imperial War Museum North Postgraduate and Early Career Researchers Network (FWW Network), the First World War: Commemoration and Memory

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Bird, Jacqueline: In the matter of Agent Orange: Vietnam veterans versus the Australian War Memorial

Bird, Jacqueline* ‘In the matter of Agent Orange: Vietnam veterans versus the Australian War Memorial‘, Honest History, 15 March 2016 A detailed account of more than twenty years of history, leading up to the agreement by the Australian War Memorial

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Walsh, Michael JK & Andrekos Varnava, ed.: Australia and the Great War

Walsh, Michael JK & Andrekos Varnava, ed. Australia and the Great War: Identity, Memory and Mythology, MUP Academic, Carlton, 2016 Australia and the Great War explores both the immediate and long-term consequences of the war on this complex relationship, looking in

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In the matter of Agent Orange: Vietnam veterans versus the Australian War Memorial

Jacqueline Bird ‘In the matter of Agent Orange: Vietnam veterans versus the Australian War Memorial’, Honest History, 15 March 2016 * CONTENTS Opening comments Initial reaction to FB Smith’s work The 2008 trigger at the War Memorial The case against

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After the Fall: Singapore conference on World War I (review of Walsh and Varnava)

‘After the Fall: Singapore conference on World War I’, Honest History, 15 March 2016 David Stephens reviews Australia and the Great War: Identity, Memory and Mythology, edited by Michael JK Walsh and Andrekos Varnava Conference papers that wait too long

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PM’s remembrance rhetoric and alleged DVA performance: a fascinating juxtaposition

Two events in the last week juxtaposed enlightened commemorative rhetoric and complaints about bureaucracy. The rhetoric came from the prime minister on 26 February, opening the new Soldier On Robert Poate Reintegration and Recovery Centre in Canberra. It is critical

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Fathi, Romain: ‘A piece of Australia in France’: Anzac Day at Villers-Bretonneux

Fathi, Romain ‘”A piece of Australia in France”: Australian authorities and the commemoration of Anzac Day at Villers-Bretonneux in the last decade’, Shanti Sumartojo & Ben Wellings, ed. Nation, Memory and Great War Communication, Peter Lang, Bern & Oxford, 2014,

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In the wake of the White Paper: does arms spending lead to war?

With the release of the Defence White Paper today, we are reposting a paper that we first posted in November 2014. The paper asks the question, ‘Does arms spending lead to war?’ The summary of our paper is here and

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Daley, Paul: Cultural institutions crisis and history being militarised

Daley, Paul ‘Our major cultural institutions are in crisis – and our history is being militarised‘, Guardian Australia, 22 February 2016 updated ‘What price do we put on a nation’s memory? And what should that memory recall?’ Analyses the current

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Bombing of Darwin remembered – in context

Update 10 March 2016: a new book by Brett Bowden on the bombing of Darwin ________________ The new Minister for the Centenary of Anzac, Dan Tehan MP, has issued his first media release. It marks the 74th anniversary today of

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Arbuckle, Alex Q.: 1965-1975 another Vietnam: unseen images of the war from the winning side

Arbuckle, Alex Q. ‘1965-1975 another Vietnam: unseen images of the war from the winning side‘, Mashable, 5 February 2016 Next month, 8 March, is the 50th anniversary of the Australian government’s announcement that its  commitment to the Vietnam War would

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McConnel, James & Peter Stanley: Australia fights Britain over Fromelles

McConnel, James & Peter Stanley ‘Fromelles: Australia picks a fresh fight with Britain over a 100-year-old battle‘, The Conversation, 10 February 2016 Riffs off Australian officials’ decision to exclude the families of British soldiers from attending the Fromelles commemoration in

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Smaal, Yorick: Sex, soldiers and the South Pacific

Smaal, Yorick Sex, Soldiers and the South Pacific: Queer Identities in Australia in the Second World War, Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2015 Sex, Soldiers and the South Pacific, 1939-45 explores the queer dynamics of war across the Australia and forward bases

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Sex, soldiers and the South Pacific (review of Smaal)

‘Sex, soldiers and the South Pacific (review of Smaal)’, Honest History, 8 February 2016 Diane Bell* reviews Yorick Smaal’s Sex, Soldiers and the South Pacific, 1939-45: Queer Identities in Australia in the Second World War Note: The cover of the

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Review note: Stephens and Seal’s Remembering the Wars

‘Review note: Stephens and Seal’s Remembering the Wars: Commemoration in Western Australian Communities‘, Honest History, 6 February 2016 Anyone who’s spent time in country Australia will have noticed the centrality of a war memorial to nearly every community. Recently, memorials

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Fitzkrieg halted at New Directions in War and History Conference, Canberra

About 70 people attended this conference at ANU on 4-5 February, jointly run by the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at ANU and the Australian Centre for the Study of Armed Conflict and Society at UNSW Canberra. Front-line conference wranglers

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Singing country: the importance of the song On every Anzac Day

David Stephens ‘Singing country: the musical legacy of David Morrison, Australian of the Year – and a straw in the wind at the Australian War Memorial?’, Honest History, 2 February 2016 Before David Morrison became Australian of the Year he

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‘Visitation’ numbers at the Australian War Memorial since 1991: is this joint really jumpin’?

David Stephens ‘“Visitation” numbers at the Australian War Memorial since 1991: is this joint really jumpin’?’ Honest History, 2 February 2016 The title of this piece needs some explanation. First, ‘visitation’. The author thought this word meant the visit of

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Stephens, David: Singing country: the importance of the song On every Anzac Day

Stephens, David ‘Singing country: the musical legacy of David Morrison, Australian of the Year – and a straw in the wind at the Australian War Memorial?’, Honest History, 2 February 2016 The article looks at the story behind the song

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Stephens, David: ‘Visitation’ numbers at the Australian War Memorial since 1991

Stephens, David ‘“Visitation” numbers at the Australian War Memorial since 1991: is this joint really jumpin’?’ Honest History, 2 February 2016 In this article we analyse 25 years of War Memorial visitor statistics and seven years of statistics for the

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High Commissioner Fisher talks up the war, January 1916: highlights reel

‘High Commissioner Fisher talks up the war, January 1916: Honest History highlights reel’, Honest History, 2 February 2016 Andrew Fisher left the Australian prime ministership on 30 October 1915 and, with his family, travelled to London to take up the

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Uyar, Mesut: Gallipoli ceasefire May 1915

Uyar, Mesut ‘Who called for a ceasefire? Gallipoli 1915‘, Wartime (Australian War Memorial) 73, Summer 2016, pp. 54-59 (pdf supplied by author) The author argues that the ceasefire of 24 May was needed, tricky to negotiate and raised issues of

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Pilger, John: Australia’s day for secrets, flags and cowards

Pilger, John ‘Australia’s day for secrets, flags and cowards‘, New Matilda, 23 January 2016 The original Australians are the oldest human presence. To the European invaders, they did not exist because their continent had been declared terra nullius: empty land. To

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Dean, Peter J.: Complexity and limitations of Australian army biography

Dean, Peter J. ‘Commemoration, memory, and forgotten histories: complexity and limitations of Australian army biography‘, War and Society, 29, 2, October 2010, pp. 118-36 Addresses the question ‘how far has biography been utilized in understanding the history of the Australian

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Connor, John, Peter Stanley & Peter Yule: World War I at home

Connor, John, Peter Stanley & Peter Yule The War at Home: The Centenary History of Australia and the Great War Volume 4, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2015 The War at Home interprets the experience of the Australian people during the

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Walsh, Nick: Kokoda Track

Walsh, Nick Kokoda Track, The author, 2nd edition, Melbourne 2012 This little book (70 pages, a dozen photographs, two clear maps) was written by a veteran who is now 101 years of age. It reminds us that, beneath the bulk

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FitzSimons, Peter: Fromelles and Pozières: In the Trenches of Hell

FitzSimons, Peter Fromelles and Pozières: In the Trenches of Hell, Random House, Sydney, 2015; electronic version available On 19 July 1916, 7000 Australian soldiers – in the first major action of the AIF on the Western Front – attacked entrenched

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The Fitzkrieg reaches Fromelles and Pozières (review of FitzSimons)

‘The Fitzkrieg reaches Fromelles and Pozières’, Honest History, 11 January 2016 David Stephens reviews Peter FitzSimons’ Fromelles and Pozières: In the Trenches of Hell. This is a better book than this reviewer expected. He edited a trenchant but balanced review

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Stephens, David: A century since we stole quietly away

Stephens, David ‘A century since we stole quietly away‘, Honest History, 23 December 2015 updated Marks the centenary of the evacuation of ANZAC troops from Gallipoli and describes the commemorative ceremony at the Australian War Memorial. Anzac remains, according to

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A century since we stole quietly away

David Stephens ‘A century since we stole quietly away’, Honest History, 23 December 2015 To judge from Trove (the National Library’s newspaper database) the first news of the successful evacuation from Gallipoli arrived in time for the evening editions of

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Honest History Christmas miscellany 2015: lots to read and ponder

‘Honest History Christmas miscellany 2015: lots to read and ponder’, Honest History, 20 December 2015 Christmas often brings a reckoning and it is the same in our compact little enterprise. We would have loved to have afforded some of the

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Cahill, Rowan: two poets (Denis Kevans & Henry Weston Pryce) – review essay

Rowan Cahill ‘Two poets (Denis Kevans and Henry Weston Pryce), war and a manuscript: a review essay’, Honest History, 17 December 2015 In the Special Collections of the Australian Defence Force Academy’s (ADFA) Academic Library is a manuscript by poet

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Appleby, Gabrielle: what say do our elected representatives have in going to war?

Appleby, Gabrielle ‘What say do our elected representatives have in going to war?‘ The Conversation, 10 December 2015 The authorisation of military force is one of the most serious and consequential powers that governments possess. This power should be exercised

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Powell, Graeme with Stuart Macintyre: Land of opportunity (Post-War Reconstruction archives)

Powell, Graeme with Stuart Macintyre Land of Opportunity: Australia’s Post-War Reconstruction, National Archives of Australia, Canberra, 2015 This is 336 pages (30 chapters) of guidance to the files of the National Archives of Australia on a crucial decade of Australia’s

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Vatsikopoulos, Helen: Australian women war reporters (review of Baker)

Vatsikopoulos, Helen ‘Australian Women War Reporters review: how female journalists made it to battle‘, Sydney Morning Herald, 2 December 2015 Reviews Jeannine Baker’s Australian Women War Reporters: Boer War to Vietnam. Australian women journalists might have been granted equal pay

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Vladiv-Glover, Slobodanka, ed.: Miles Franklin writings from the Balkans war

Vladiv-Glover, Slobodanka (Millicent), ed. ‘Writings from the Balkan Theatre of War by Miles Franklin (Extracted from the Archives of the Mitchell Library)’, Transcultural Studies: A Series in Interdisciplinary Research, Special Issue: The Serbs and Miles Franklin in World War I

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Bell, Diane: Miles Franklin and the Serbs still matter: a review essay

Diane Bell* ‘Miles Franklin and the Serbs still matter: a review essay’, Honest History, 1 December 2015 [Publication details of the work reviewed: Vladiv-Glover, Slobodanka. (Editor). (2014). ‘Writings from the Balkan Theatre of War by Miles Franklin (Extracted from the Archives

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Going to the Flicks, Brisbane, November 1915

‘Going to the Flicks, Brisbane, November 1915: highlights reel’, Honest History, 1 December 2015 Brisbane Courier 26 November 1915 26 November 1915 was a Friday and it was the final night of the ‘stirring military program’ at the Strand Theatre

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Eales, Robert: Morant, the expendable icon & other Boer War resources

Eales, Robert ‘Morant, the expendable icon‘ (and other Boer War resources), Boer War Topics (website) Myth-busting in relation to the Boer War has not been common in Australia. Robert Eales is originally from South Africa and has researched the war

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Daley, Paul: Vietnam veteran who never really returned

Daley, Paul ‘“He should have died”: the Vietnam veteran who never really returned‘, Guardian Australia, 25 November 2015 Partly a review of historian Michael McKernan’s memoir (When this Thing Happened) about his brother-in-law, Joe Stawyskyj, a national servicemen, injured for

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Beaumont, Joan, Lachlan Grant & Aaron Pegram; ed.: Beyond surrender: POWs

Beaumont, Joan, Lachlan Grant & Aaron Pegram, ed. Beyond Surrender: Australian Prisoners of War in the Twentieth Century, Melbourne University Press, Carlton Vic. 2015; available electronically Over the twentieth century 35,000 Australians suffered as prisoners of war in conflicts ranging

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Fitting POWs into our skewed Anzac legend (review of Beyond Surrender)

‘Fitting POWs into our skewed Anzac legend’ (review of Beyond Surrender), Honest History, 25 November 2015 Kristen Alexander* reviews Beyond Surrender: Australian Prisoners of War in the Twentieth Century, edited by Joan Beaumont, Lachlan Grant and Aaron Pegram _____________________ As

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Henry, Adam : Nation-state, killing and death

Henry, Adam ‘The nation-state, killing and death‘, Library of Social Science Guest Newsletter, 7 October 2015 The author examines some paradoxes and hypocrisies in how nations, even ‘modern’ nations, rationalise their involvement with war. Despite the fact that graphic images

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White, Hugh: importance of self-reliance in defence

White, Hugh ‘Principle of self-reliance more important now than it has ever been‘, Sydney Morning Herald, 24 November 2015 The article looks at the implications of the government announcement that the Defence White Paper will not now be released until

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Tognolini, John: History Man’s Past; Brothers

Tognolini, John A History Man’s Past & Other People’s Stories: A Shared Memoir. Part One: Other People’s Wars, The author, Wellington, NSW, 2015; Brothers, Part One: Gallipoli 1915, The author, Wellington, NSW, 2015 The first book draws upon the author’s interviews

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A history man’s view of war (review of Tognolini)

‘A history man’s view of war’, Honest History, 18 November 2015 Derek Abbott* reviews A History Man’s Past & Other People’s Stories: A Shared Memoir. Part One: Other People’s Wars and Brothers, Part One: Gallipoli 1915, both by John Tognolini.

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Nelson, Robert: honour those who refused to go to war

Nelson, Robert ‘We should honour those who refused to go to war‘, Age, 11 November 2015 The author considers who and what is worthy of remembrance, noting the recently published book World War One: a History in 100 Stories. The

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Wellings, Ben: conscription referendums made our Great War different

Wellings, Ben ‘Only the conscription referendums made Australia’s Great War experience different‘, The Conversation, 10 November 2015 ‘Relegating the global and transnational dimensions and reiterating familiar – if erroneous – national narratives’, the author argues, ‘creates distortions in the image

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Hassan, Toni: what’s the War Memorial good for?

Hassan, Toni ‘The War Memorial: what’s it good for?‘ Age, 6 November 2015 Also in other Fairfax papers, this piece takes up themes common in Honest History: the Australian War Memorial shies away from recognising the Frontier Wars, it plays

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The first Anzac Day? Adelaide 1915: highlights reel

‘The first Anzac Day? Adelaide 1915: highlights reel’, Honest History, 13 October 2015 This year, 2015, as surely everyone knows now, is one hundred years since the Gallipoli landing/invasion, 25 April 1915, popularised as ‘Anzac’. But when was the first

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Online gem No.3: Canberra’s 1940 air crash

Online gem No. 3: Canberra’s 1940 air crash (13 October 2015) On the morning of 13 August 1940 a Hudson A16-97 aircraft flying from Melbourne to Canberra crashed on the eastern approaches to Canberra’s airport. All ten people on board

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War correspondents: Canberra memorial; resources on HH site

Update 25 October 2015: extract from Jeannine Baker’s Australian Women War Reporters: Boer War to Vietnam Update 26 September 2015: more from Nicholas Stuart and Gai Brodtmann MP. Update 25 September 2015: Helen Vatsikopoulos writes. A cheeky reflection from Mark

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Victoria, Brian: war remembrance in Japan (two parts)

Victoria, Brian ‘War remembrance in Japan’s Buddhist cemeteries, Part I: Kannon hears the cries of war‘, Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, Vol. 13, Issue 31, No. 3, August 3, 2015; ‘Part II: Transforming war criminals into Martyrs: “true words” on Mt.

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Stephens, David: three Canberra art exhibitions (review)

Stephens, David ‘Less twaddling by the lake: three art exhibitions in Canberra‘, Honest History, 16 September 2015 A review of Reality in flames at the Australian War Memorial, Heroes and villians: William Strutt’s Australia at the National Library of Australia

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Less twaddling by the lake: three Canberra art exhibitions

David Stephens ‘Less twaddling by the lake: three art exhibitions in Canberra’, Honest History, 16 September 2015 The three exhibitions covered in this review offer a multi-hued picture of parts of our history. The first show, Reality in flames, has

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 2 June 1915

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 2 June 1915 Our final insight into expatriate missionary life in the Ottoman Empire of 1915. Previous editions: 28 April, 5 May 1915, 12 May 1915, 19 May 1915, 26 May 1915. Again, thanks to Vicken Babkenian for unearthing

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Summers, Julie: Fashion on the ration: style in the Second World War

Summers, Julie Fashion on the Ration: Style in the Second World War, Profile Books, London, 2015 From the young woman who avoided the dreaded ‘forces bloomers’ by making knickers from military-issue silk maps, to Vogue’s indomitable editor Audrey Withers, who

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Radojevic, Mira & Ljubodrag Dimic: Serbia in the Great War

Radojević, Mira & Ljubodrag Dimić Serbia in the Great War 1914-1918: a Short History, Srpska knjizevna zadruga (Serbian Literary Cooperative), Belgrade, 2nd edition, 2014 Serbia in the Great War 1914-1918 is a book of facts based on well-known sources and documents. Affirming

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Gluckstein, Donny, ed.: Fighting on all fronts

Gluckstein, Donny, ed. Fighting on All Fronts: Popular Resistance in the Second World War, Bookmarks, London, 2015 Collection of ten articles and introduction. Fighting on All Fronts brings together ten writers to take up the story of popular resistance. The

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Stephens, David: Freedom and the Australian War Memorial: is Honest History not a force for good?

Stephens, David ‘Freedom and the Australian War Memorial: is Honest History not a force for good?‘, Honest History, 1 September 2015 Honest History’s secretary and editor traces the often fraught relationship between Honest History and the Australian War Memorial, which

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Freedom and the Australian War Memorial: is Honest History not a force for good?

David Stephens ‘Freedom and the Australian War Memorial: is Honest History not a force for good?’, Honest History, 1 September 2015 Communication has always been central to warfare. Carrier pigeons, flags, field telephones, Mel Gibson rushing through the trenches in

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Finding a thing to wear during World War II (review of Julie Summers)

‘Finding a thing to wear during World War II’, Honest History, 1 September 2015 Janet Wilson* reviews Fashion on the Ration: Style in the Second World War by Julie Summers This book accompanied an exhibition at the Imperial War Museum

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Redressing historical inadequacies? review of two books on two wars

‘Redressing historical inadequacies?’ Honest History, 1 September 2015 Derek Abbott* reviews Serbia in the Great War 1914-1918, by Mira Radojevic and Ljubodrag Dimic, and Fighting on All Fronts: Popular Resistance in the Second World War, edited by Donny Gluckstein. These

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 26 May 1915

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 26 May 1915 More insights into expatriate missionary life in the Ottoman Empire of 1915. Previous editions: 28 April, 5 May 1915, 12 May 1915, 19 May 1915. In this edition: [Translated from Ikdam:] While the English papers

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Taylor, Alan: Syria’s children (photographs)

Taylor, Alan ‘Syria’s children‘, The Atlantic, 27 August 2015 Contains 35 photographs of the effects of the war in Syria on children. It must be a question for countries contemplating involvement whether this will make things on the ground better

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Australia. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade: Armenian genocide FOI documents

Australia. Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade FOI disclosure log reference nos 15/25024 and others, Freedom of Information This material was disclosed under FOI to Vache Kahramanian on behalf of the Armenian National Committee of Australia. Reference number 15/25024 is

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Furst, David, Tomas Munita et al: walking in war’s path

Furst, David, Tomas Munita, Jodi Rudoren, Isabel Kershner, Jon Huang, Sergio Pecanha ‘Walking in war’s path‘, New York Times, 22 August 2015 We don’t normally feature the Gaza Strip on Honest History but this is an exceptional piece of reportage

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Banivanua Mar, Tracey: Pacific people and war in Pacific

Banivanua Mar, Tracey ‘Remember the Pacific’s people when we remember the war in the Pacific‘, The Conversation, 19 August 2015 Summarises the story of war in the Pacific from the point-of-view of the people who lived there and had to

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Broinowski, Alison: mission creep into Syria

Broinowski, Alison ‘Borderless war or, when you get in a hole, stop digging‘, Pearls and Irritations, 15 August 2015 The United States has formally asked for Australian involvement in Syria. Honest History vice president had already posted this article on

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 19 May 2015

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 19 May 1915 We continue these insights into expatriate missionary life in the Ottoman Empire of 1915, presenting a different, English-language, view of the Dardanelles campaign. Previous editions: 28 April, 5 May 1915, 12 May

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Review note: Stuart Macintyre’s Australia’s Boldest Experiment

‘Review note: Stuart Macintyre’s Australia’s Boldest Experiment‘, Honest History, 19 August 2015 updated World War I is far enough back for spruikers of a particular view of it to extract bits selectively from, say, the ambivalent Charles Bean and impress

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Reality of war deja vu, including Long Tan 49

We presented these items in our e-Newsletter no. 28 earlier in the month on the 70th anniversary of Hiroshima-Nagasaki (and the 100th anniversary of Lone Pine). We wanted to run them through again. Also, given today’s 49th anniversary of Long

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VP Day 70th anniversary: miscellany

‘VP Day 70th anniversary: Honest History miscellany’, Honest History, 16 August 2015 Anniversary Yesterday was the 70th anniversary of the surrender of Japan in 1945, commemorated as Victory in the Pacific Day. ABC News provided a comprehensive round-up. Geraldine Doogue

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Bowers, Mike: Anzac Cove and Gallipoli – interactive

Bowers, Mike ‘Anzac Cove and Gallipoli: then and now – interactive‘, Guardian Australia, 25 April 2015 We missed it earlier but are running it now as it, briefly, won an award, until it was realised there had been a mistake.

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Spurling, Tom & JM Webb: World War I and Australian science

Spurling, Tom & John Mark Webb ‘The Great War brought us tragedy but it also birthed Australian science‘, The Conversation, 13 August 2013 Shows how the war enabled Australia to embrace science and technology innovation in a national way. Traces

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 12 May 1915

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 12 May 1915 We continue our presentation of these fascinating insights into expatriate missionary life in the Ottoman Empire of 1915. Previous editions: 28 April, 5 May 1915. Our colleague, Vicken Babkenian, who has sourced

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Rollo, Stuart: anti-semitic slogans on WWI memorial

Rollo, Stuart ‘In the most unlikely of places, anti-semitic tropes find new life‘, New Matilda, 11 August 2015 The author notes slogans ‘Victims of the Rothschilds’ on signs at the Light Horse Interchange, a war memorial road exchange at Eastern

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Sparrow, Jeff: owning up to our black history

Sparrow, Jeff ‘If black lives really matter in Australia, it’s time we owned up to our history’, Guardian Australia, 7 August 2015 Weaves together Adam Goodes, the ‘Black Lives Matter’ campaign in the United States, the treatment of Pacific Islander

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Wilfred Burchett in Hiroshima: highlights reel

‘Wilfred Burchett in Hiroshima: highlights reel’, Honest History, 9 August 2015 Today is the 70th anniversary of the dropping of an atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan. By the end of 1945 up to 80 000 people in Nagasaki had died

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Hiroshima-Nagasaki and Lone Pine: miscellany

‘Hiroshima-Nagasaki and Lone Pine: miscellany’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 Battle of Lone Pine (Battle of Kanlı Sırt), 6-10 August 1915 Bombing of Hiroshima, 6 August 1945 Bombing of Nagasaki, 9 August 1945 (Images warning) Update 12 August 2015: a

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Stephens, David: And the children went: Hands on History at the War Memorial

Stephens, David ‘“And the children went”: Hands on History at the Australian War Memorial‘, Honest History, 4 August 2015 A description of a ‘Hands on History’ session for school children on holidays, leading in to an assessment of how the

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Heaton, Barbara Carol: coal miners during World War II

Heaton, Barbara Carol* ‘A history of unrest and turmoil: coal miners during World War II’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 An examination of coal mining in wartime, drawing heavily on resources collected by former mining official, Jim Comerford, and now

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And the children went: Hands on History at the War Memorial

David Stephens ‘”And the children went”: Hands on History at the Australian War Memorial in the school holidays’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 During the last school holidays, the Australian War Memorial ran some ‘Hands on History’ sessions for children.

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Coal miners during World War II

Barbara Carol Heaton* ‘A history of unrest and turmoil: coal miners during World War II’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 Controversy continues over the role of militant unions in Australia during World War II. While the sharpest focus has been

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War Census 1915 (Part II)

‘The War Census of 1915: Honest History highlights reel (Part II)’, Honest History, 4 August 2015 War worries are added to by the census, which probes into the pockets and the soul of every citizen, asking him in plain print

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Buckley, Ian: Australia’s foreign wars, Boer to Iraq

Buckley, Ian ‘Australia’s foreign wars: origins, costs, future?! and other essays‘, Honest History, 4 August 2015 While we have categorised this as one post, it actually links to a trove of articles by this deep-thinking now 90-year-old. The articles link

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Four takes on war and how to look at it

We wanted to run these again, particularly a week ahead of the simultaneous (pretty much) anniversaries of Lone Pine and Hiroshima. The first two items put our war history in perspective; the third might look like an easy mark but

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If not the Bush then what?

These four quotes from our Whizzbangs collection suggest that, while the Bush may have made us, we’ve moved on to drier country. We ignite Whizzbangs in our monthly newsletters. Before. ‘It is easy enough to see why men went to the

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Menadue, John: militarisation the new norm

Menadue, John ‘Militarisation, the new norm‘, Pearls and Irritations, 27 July 2015 Menadue, distinguished former senior public servant, writes on his blog about the increasing militarisation of Australia, through the creation of the Australian Border Force, military vice-regal appointments, warlike

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 5 May 1915

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 5 May 2015 This is the complete edition for the date shown of an English language weekly newsletter published by the American missionaries in Constantinople. The issues from 1915 provide great insight from the ‘other side’

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Kalagian Blunt, Ashley: life after genocide

Kalagian Blunt, Ashley ‘Life after genocide: legacies of a shattered culture‘, Griffith Review, July 2015 A Canadian-Armenian now living in Australia examines her heritage and touches on Australian connections as well. She notes how the Armenian genocide provided lessons for

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Australian War Memorial: Reality in Flames

Australian War Memorial Reality in Flames: Modern Australian Art & the Second World War Opened on 3 July 2015, this is ‘the first exhibition dedicated exclusively to exploring how Australian modernist artists responded creatively to the Second World War’. Modern

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Robertson, Tim: foreign fighter with Anzac spirit

Robertson, Tim ‘Foreign fighter with the “Anzac spirit”‘, Eureka Street, 12 July 2015 Brief article on Reece Harding, killed fighting with Kurdish Peshmerga forces against Islamic State. Harding was technically in breach of Australian law, though Robertson describes the factors

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ANZUS-China miscellany

‘ANZUS-China miscellany’, Honest History, 17 July 2015 Update 18 July 2015: Chinese Ambassador Ma attempts to reassure Australia about China’s benign intentions. _____________________________ Recently Honest History collected some material on China-Japan-Australia-US relations and ran it under the heading ‘Spratlyswatch’. While

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Broinowski, Alison: Toxic warfare (Agent Orange)

Broinowski, Alison ‘Toxic warfare: Agent Orange revisited‘, Honest History, 16 July 2015 The article comments on the decision by the Australian War Memorial Council to commission a further volume on the medical aspects of the Vietnam War. Also relevant are

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Toxic warfare: revisiting Agent Orange

Alison Broinowski ‘Toxic warfare: revisiting Agent Orange’, Honest History, 16 July 2015 Soon after the Australian War Memorial announced that three new histories of the wars in East Timor, Afghanistan, and Iraq (to 2014) are to be written in the

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Bible House, Constantinople: The Orient, 28 April 1915

Bible House, Constantinople The Orient, 28 April 1915 An unusual post for Honest History but a fascinating one, this is the complete edition for the date shown of an English language weekly newsletter published by the American missionaries in Constantinople. The

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Broinowski, Alison: Officially acceptable war history

Broinowski, Alison ‘Officially acceptable war history‘, Honest History, 11 July 2015 The article discusses the projected official histories of the Australian involvements in East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq. Dr Broinowski is Vice President of Honest History and of Australians for

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Officially acceptable war history

Alison Broinowski ‘Officially acceptable war history’, Honest History, 11 July 2015 The government is soon to announce who will write the official history of Australia’s three latest military interventions in East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq. The Minister for Veterans’ Affairs,

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Halloran, Neil: Fallen of World War II

Halloran, Neil ‘The fallen of World War II‘, Vimeo, 4 May 2015 Fifteen minute interactive video illustrating comparative deaths, military and civilian, by country. Comparisons with other wars. Should be compulsory viewing for Australians fixated on our national figures. David

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Rasmussen, Sune Engel: Afghanistan legacy

Rasmussen, Sune Engel ‘All that remains: our questionable legacy in Afghanistan‘, Sydney Morning Herald ‘Good Weekend’, 4 July 2015 Article by a Kabul-based Danish journalist, which notes the growing strength of the Taliban since Australia left Oruzgan province. On the

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Tooze, Adam: Deluge, Great War and remaking global order

Tooze, Adam The Deluge: the Great War and the Remaking of Global Order 1916-1931, Allen Lane, London, 2014; electronic version available; US edition has different title Adam Tooze’s panoramic new book tells a radical, new story of the struggle for

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Terzis, Gillian: hashtag activism and online grief

Terzis, Gillian ‘Death trends: hashtag activism and the rise of online grief‘, Kill Your Darlings, July 2015 Our constant connection to the news and to the opinions of others means that grief can easily become a viral phenomenon … I

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Deluge: Great War and remaking global order

‘Deluge: Great War and remaking global order’, Honest History, 7 July 2015 Adam Tooze’s book is reviewed by Derek Abbott* ________________ The causes of World War I are the source of seemingly endless debate. From Prussian military hubris or German

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Buckley, Ian: lessons of the Boer War

Buckley, Ian ‘A case history: Britain, Empire decline, and the origins of WW1, or, might the lessons of the Boer War have saved the day?‘ Honest History, 7 July 2015 Boer women and children in a British concentration camp during

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Little, Daniel & Donkin, Chris: Vietnam draft numbers

Little, Daniel & Donkin, Chris ‘The numbers reveal the government didn’t play “god” with the Vietnam draft‘, The Conversation, 2 July 2015 Despite the claims of former conscript and former deputy prime minister, Tim Fischer, mathematical analysis suggests that the

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War Census 1915 (Part I)

‘The War Census of 1915: Honest History highlights reel (Part I)’, Honest History, 7 July 2015 Some historians and observers say that Gallipoli saw the birth of the Australian nation as men flocked to the colours. Others argue that the

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War powers reform book launched

Update 13 August 2015: extracts in Pearls and Irritations John Menadue’s blog Pearls and Irritations reprints the chapters by Michael McKinley on ‘Alliance ideology, the myth of sacrifice and the national security culture‘ and the late Malcolm Fraser on ‘We

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Kerkhove, Ray: Fortified frontiers and white and black tactics

Kerkhove, Ray ‘Barriers and bastions: fortified frontiers and white and black tactics: paper presented at “Our shared history: resistance and reconciliation”, CQU seminar, Noosa, 11 June 2015‘, Honest History, 22 June 2015 Nineteenth century Australia had fortifications erected to protect

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O’Brien, Patricia: Anzacs in the Pacific

O’Brien, Patricia ‘The ANZACs in the Pacific – myths in Empire‘, Australian Outlook, 12 June 2015 Notes the 1914 actions by New Zealand in Samoa and Australia in New Guinea and how they developed into post-war colonialism. The end of

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Sheralyn Rose responds to Honest History

‘Sheralyn Rose responds to Honest History highlights reel’, Honest History, 18 June 2015 Dr Sheralyn Rose, the wife of a Vietnam veteran, has responded to our highlights reel on Vietnam mythbusting. Rather than ask her to provide this material as

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Vietnam Veterans’ Federation responds to Honest History

‘Vietnam Veterans’ Federation responds to Honest History highlights reel’, Honest History, 12 June 2015 The Vietnam Veterans’ Federation through its national research officer, Graham Walker, has responded to our highlights reel on Vietnam mythbusting. Rather than ask Graham Walker to

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Dapin, Mark: The Nashos’ War

Dapin, Mark The Nashos’ War: Australia’s National Servicemen and Vietnam, Penguin Viking, Melbourne, 2014 [O]ur ideas of national service contain strange contradictions and inaccuracies: that the draft was unpopular but militarily necessary; that the nashos in Vietnam all volunteered to

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Anzac and Anzackery: Kogarah speech

David Stephens ‘Anzac and Anzackery: speech to Kogarah Historical Society, 14 May 2015′, Honest History, 9 June 2015 I acknowledge the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of this land, and their elders past and present. I

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Mythbusting about Vietnam: highlights reel

‘Mythbusting about Australians returned from Vietnam: Honest History highlights reel’, Honest History, 9 June 2015 updated UPDATE 14 July 2015: further volume planned on medical aspects of Vietnam War service. Comment by Alison Broinowski. UPDATE 18 June 2015: Dr Sheralyn

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Jeune Barbarine: sexual slavery and prostitution in Egypt circa 1914

Raden Dunbar ‘”Jeune Barbarine”: sexual slavery and prostitution in Egypt circa 1914′, Honest History, 9 June 2015 This photograph, ‘Jeune Barbarine’, is of a Berber girl from the Barbary Coast of North Africa. It was made in Egypt shortly before

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Review note: accessing three special editions

‘Review note: accessing three special editions’, Honest History, 9 June 2015 The title of this note is chosen deliberately: while, like any review, this one will do some assessing it is also concerned with accessing – with how the reader

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Buckley, Ian: learning from Adam Smith

Buckley, Ian ‘Learning from Adam Smith: help at hand today‘, Honest History, 9 June 2015 Buckley contests the view that Adam Smith argued ‘that unalloyed selfishness aimed solely at the maximisation of production, trade and profit is in the best

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War dances and real wars: Honest History First Peoples miscellany

‘War dances and real wars: Honest History First Peoples miscellany’, Honest History, 7 June 2015 Update 8 June 2015: Helen Davidson writes about Wayne Quilliam’s photographs of and interviews with the women of Indigenous Australia. Quilliam’s exhibition opens at UN

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Edwards, Peter: Australia and the Vietnam War

Edwards, Peter Australia and the Vietnam War, NewSouth and the Australian War Memorial, Sydney, 2014 The Vietnam War was Australia’s longest and most controversial military commitment of the twentieth century, ending in humiliation for the United States and its allies

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Stephens, David: Anzac and Anzackery (Kogarah speech)

Stephens, David ‘Anzac and Anzackery: speech to Kogarah Historical Society, 14 May 2015‘, Honest History, 9 June 2015 Honest History’s secretary speaks on the contrast between an Anzac ideal and the bloated caricature that is ‘Anzackery’. There are many resources

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Keys, Richard: The ‘Great’ War

Keys, Richard ‘The “Great” War‘, Honest History, 2 June 2015 Retired film curator Richard Keys sums up the Great War from his point of view a century on, where he detects bellicose tendencies again in today’s Australia. Read more …

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The ‘Great’ War

Richard Keys* ‘The “Great” War’, Honest History, 2 June 2015 Brendan Nelson shamefully described the Australian War Memorial as holding the soul of Australia. Julia Gillard said Gallipoli defined us as a nation. With the government spending millions on Anzac

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Ackland, Richard: Mass surveillance and servants of the state

Ackland, Richard ‘Mass surveillance makes us servants of the state: that’s chilling‘, Guardian Australia, 26 May 2015 Text of the PEN Free Voices lecture at the Sydney Writers Festival, 24 May 2015. There were more than 50 comments. Censorship, control

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Crispin, Judith: In Noah’s country (post-genocide Armenia)

Crispin, Judith In Noah’s Country: a Roadtrip through Post-Genocide Armenia, T & G Publishing, Sydney, 2015 Australian history has been bound up with that of Armenia and the Armenians since 24 April 1915, which saw the beginning of the archetypal

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Their centenary country: Honest History First Peoples miscellany

‘Their centenary country: Honest History First Peoples miscellany’, Honest History, 20 May 2015 and updated (Note: this article contains references to Indigenous people who have died.) Updates: More from Frank Brennan. A further article from Nolan Hunter on recognition. Roslyn

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Broinowski, Alison: Australians for War Powers Reform initiative

Broinowski, Alison, et al ‘Australians for War Powers Reform initiative‘, PerthIndyMedia, 11 May 2015 Alison Broinowski is with AWPR, is Honest History’s vice president and the co-editor of a book shortly to be published, How Does Australia Go to War?,

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Rees, Peter: Bearing witness (CEW Bean)

Rees, Peter Bearing Witness: the Remarkable Life of CEW Bean, Australia’s Greatest War Correspondent, Allen & Unwin, Crows Nest, NSW, 2015 A full biography of the man known as CEW Bean – war correspondent and official historian of World War

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Ronaldson, Michael: Ministerial statement Anzac centenary 2015

Ronaldson, Senator Michael ‘Ministerial statement on the centenary of Anzac and Anzac Day 2015‘, Minister’s Web Site, 13 May 2015 Statement tabled in the Senate, along with ministerial remarks. This is the third such statement and it reports on the

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War whizzbangs in the month of Anzac

Whizzbangs are Honest History’s miscellany of briefs from past and present, to stir up the entrenched and focus the mind. During April 2015 most of them had a war angle. Centenary. ‘Peace is not merely an absence of war. Peace

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40 years on, reflections on the fall of Saigon: Honest History list

’40 years on, reflections on the fall of Saigon: Honest History list’, Honest History, 18 May 2015 STOP PRESS: 8.00pm, 19 May: Sam Bateman of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute asks whether the US knows what it is doing sending

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Gray, Don: Australian military and Anzac

Gray, Don ‘The Australian military and Anzac‘, Honest History, 17 May 2015 Former soldier, Don Gray, makes some points about commercialisation of Anzac, Anzac Day sport, the reasons soldiers serve and the entitlements they should expect. The next area I

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Australian military and Anzac

Don Gray* ‘The Australian military and Anzac’, Honest History, 17 May 2015 This article is intended as a supplement to the recent article by David Stephens, ‘Rebooting Anzac for the next century’. That timely article questions the hyperbole and jingoism

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China, the US and Australia: Honest History Factsheet

’18 months of China, the United States and Australia: Honest History Factsheet’, Honest History, 16 May 2015 (updated) UPDATE 22 June 2015: James Laurenceson and Hannah Bretherton discuss the ACRI poll (see below 3 June) and other aspects. ‘What does

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Newton, Douglas: Two Anzac speeches 2015

Newton, Douglas ‘Two Anzac speeches 2015’, Honest History, 12 May 2015 Douglas Newton spoke on 22 April 2015 at Petersham Town Hall, Sydney, to a meeting of the Gallipoli Centenary Peace Campaign, based in Marrickville. The speech covered respect for

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Anzac Day talk at Crows Nest Uniting Church (Douglas Newton)

Douglas Newton ‘Anzac Day talk at Crows Nest Uniting Church, 26 April 2015, Honest History, 12 May 2015 (Note: this is one of two related speeches) 1. Respect The Great War was such a sprawling catastrophe that I am sure

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Gallipoli Centenary Peace Campaign Talk (Douglas Newton)

Douglas Newton ‘Gallipoli Centenary Peace Campaign Talk: Petersham Town Hall, 22 April 2015’, Honest History, 12 May 2015 (Note: one of two related speeches) 1. Respect At the outset I should say that I do not presume to tell anyone

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Dunbar, Raden: Secrets of the Anzacs – Great War VD

Dunbar, Raden The Secrets of the Anzacs: the Untold Story of Venereal Disease in the Australian Army, 1914-1919, Scribe, Brunswick, Vic., 2014 During World War I, about 60 000 soldiers of the Australian Imperial Force were treated for venereal diseases,

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La nef des fous: review of Dunbar’s Secrets of the Anzacs

‘La nef des fous: review of Dunbar’s Secrets of the Anzacs‘, Honest History, 12 May 2015 Diane Bell* reviews Raden Dunbar, The Secrets of the ANZACS: the Untold Story of Venereal Disease in the Australian Army, 1914-1919. (La nef des

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Philpott, William: Attrition: Fighting the First World War

Philpott, William Attrition: Fighting the First World War, Little Brown, London, 2014 The First World War was too big to be grasped by its participants. In the retelling of their war in the competing memories of leaders and commanders, and

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War in the long run

‘War in the long run’, Honest History, 12 May 2015 Derek Abbott* reviews William Philpott’s Attrition: Fighting the First World War The historiography of World War I is a bitterly contested area: a necessary war to defeat Prussian militarism; a

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McQueen, Humphrey: Spanish flu pandemic Australia 1912-19

McQueen, Humphrey ‘The “Spanish” influenza pandemic in Australia, 1912-19’, Jill Roe, ed., Social Policy in Australia: some Perspectives 1901-1975, Cassell Australia, Stanmore NSW, 1976, pp. 131-147 (pdf of out-of-copyright material made available by the author) This article was originally delivered

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Faber, David: Anzac Day, Gallipoli and Great War: futurological retrospective

Faber, David ‘Anzac Day, Gallipoli and the Great War: a futurological retrospective‘, Honest History, 7 May 2015 The author takes a tour d’horizon of the world of 1914-15 with sallies forward to the world of today. He touches on imperialism,

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Anzac Day, Gallipoli and Great War: futurological retrospective

David Faber* ‘Anzac Day, Gallipoli and the Great War: a futurological retrospective’, Honest History, 7 May 2015 Why are we liable/to die for survival?/Why is our nation/fighting? Mick Hucknell, ‘Simply Red’, 2011 The end of the soldier is not, as

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Reid, David: Reconciliation, please, but don’t mention the war

Reid, David ‘Reconciliation, please, but don’t mention the war‘, Honest History, 6 May 2015 Canberran David Reid recalls a family history incident and reflects on how we remember some of our wars but not others. The magical but as yet

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Reconciliation, please, but don’t mention the war

David Reid* ‘Reconciliation, please, but don’t mention the war’, Honest History, 6 May 2015 I pen this as a descendant of a Scottish surgeon who came by ship to Terra Australis 195 years ago. His son, who arrived with him

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Anzac-ed out 2015

Willy Bach ‘Anzac-ed out 2015’, Honest History, 5 May 2015 As we know…. They shall grow not old, Lives cut short Terminated Denied parenthood Pleasure, creativity Reflection Grandchildren as we that are left grow old: Lamely, sullenly Prematurely Age shall

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Bach, Willy: Anzac-ed out 2015

Bach, Willy ‘Anzac-ed out 2015‘, Honest History, 5 May 2015 Willy Bach is a postgraduate research student, School of History, University of Queensland. He says this poem was written ‘in response to the tidal wave of ANZAC promotion’. He has

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Anderson, Fay: we censor war photography in Australia

Anderson, Fay ‘We censor war photography in Australia – more’s the pity‘, The Conversation, 4 May 2015 You may have noticed we recently marked the centenary of Anzac. One hundred years after Gallipoli, we are seeing photographs of telegenic young

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Medical Association for Prevention of War: Statement in commemoration of WWI

Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia) ‘Statement in commemoration of World War I‘, MAPW, 27 April 2015 The Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia) commemorates World War 1, including the Gallipoli landings of 25 April 1915, with a

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Waugh, Maxwell N.: Soldier boys

Waugh, Maxwell N. Soldier Boys: the Militarisation of Australian and New Zealand Schools for World War I, Melbourne Books, Melbourne, 2014 A form of compulsory cadet training was the norm in Australasian schools from 1910, unlike any other part of

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Reynolds, Jonathan T., ed.: 30-second twentieth century

Reynolds, Jonathan T., ed. 30-Second Twentieth Century: the 50 Most Significant Ideas and Events, each Explained in Half a Minute, Pier 9, Sydney, 2015 Twentieth Century presents a unique approach to modern history, condensing 100 years of innovation and art,

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ABC News 24 One-plus-One: with Clare Wright

ABC TV ‘Clare Wright‘, ABC News 24 One-plus-One, 24 April 2015 (video only) Historian Clare Wright talks with Jane Hutcheon about her early life, her early work on women in the liquor industry, her Stella Prize-winning book The Forgotten Rebels

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Yanikdag, Yucel: politics of Gallipoli – Turkish view

Yanikdag, Yucel ‘The battle of Gallipoli: the politics of remembering and forgetting in Turkey‘, Comillas Journal of International Relations [Madrid], 2, 2015, pp. 99-115 Differences in the competing versions of public memory for the Battle of Gallipoli have become more

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Sentiment, thought and jingoism in war commemoration

We ran this post as a ‘highlights reel‘ back in September and we have quoted it a number of times since. It says such profound things about commemoration we thought it was worth running again at a time which Minister

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Honest History list: Armenian genocide

UPDATE 29 July 2015: Ashley Kalagian Blunt writes about coming to terms with the genocide in Canada and Australia. UPDATE 18 June 2015: Nikki Marczak writes on how what is happening today in the Middle East repeats many historical events

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Schultz, Julianne, Peter Cochrane, et al.: Enduring legacies

Schultz, Julianne, Peter Cochrane, et al. ‘Enduring legacies‘, Griffith Review, 48, 2015; available online to subscribers Update 7 May 2015: Honest History attended a discussion at the National Library with about 150 others. Julianne Schultz, editor of this volume, wrangled

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Investing our legacies

‘Investing our legacies’, Honest History, 16 April 2015 David Stephens reviews Griffith Review 48, ‘Enduring legacies’, edited by Julianne Schultz and Peter Cochrane The title of this excellent collection is, at one level, obvious but, at another, full of possibilities.

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ABC Four Corners: Anzac to Afghanistan

ABC TV ‘Anzac to Afghanistan’, Four Corners, 13 April 2015 Chris Masters intersperses interviews with Gallipoli veterans from 1988 and Afghanistan veterans from recent years, noting the similarities and differences in their experience. Also contributing are James Brown, author of

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Then and now: two sad affairs

Then and now: two sad affairs, Honest History, 15 April 2015 Alison Broinowski reviews the Four Corners episode, ‘Anzac to Afghanistan‘ Fran Kelly is off to join the re-invasion at Gallipoli next week. So the count-down begins and pent-up excitement

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Babkenian, Vicken: Gallipoli’s inconvenient ‘other side’

Babkenian, Vicken ‘Gallipoli’s inconvenient “other side”‘, Pearls and Irritations, 10 April 2015 The author is an independent scholar at the Australian Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Sydney. The article examines the history of the Armenian genocide, looking at the

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Bearlin, Margaret et al: Women’s power to stop war

Bearlin, Margaret with the assistance of Cynthia James and Mary Ziesak ‘Women’s power to stop war: Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom 1915 to 2015‘, Honest History, 14 April 2015 The article marks the centenary of the International Congress

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Women’s power to stop war

Margaret Bearlin in association with Cynthia James and Mary Ziesak ‘Women’s power to stop war: Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom 1915 to 2015’, Honest History, 14 April 2015 2015 marks not only the centenary of Anzac; it is

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Neuhaus, Susan & Sharon Mascall-Dare: Not for Glory

Neuhaus, Susan & Sharon Mascall-Dare Not for Glory: a Century of Service by Medical Women to the Australian Army and its Allies, Boolarong Press, Brisbane, 2014 From the trenches of the Western Front to the ricefields and jungles of South-east

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Medical women at war: Not for Glory reviewed

‘Medical women in war’, Honest History, 14 April 2015 Carolyn Holbrook reviews Susan J. Neuhaus and Sharon Mascall-Dare, Not for Glory: a Century of Service by Medical Women to the Australian Army and its Allies When Dr Agnes Bennett tried

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Hemming, Judy & Michael McKinley: Anzac’s wars

Hemming, Judy & Michael McKinley ‘Anzac’s wars: remembering and its resistances‘, Honest History, 10 April 2015 The authors look at recent decisions in Australian and New Zealand defence policy in the light of their shared and occasionally diverging history. The

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Anzac’s wars: remembering and its resistances

Judy Hemming & Michael McKinley ‘Anzac’s wars: remembering and its resistances’, Honest History, 10 April 2015 A prefatory comment This paper speaks of the regional responses by Australia and New Zealand to certain major wars. This does not imply that

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Moses, John A.: Conflict endemic to the human condition?

Moses, John A. ‘Conflict endemic to the human condition? A note‘, Honest History, 8 April 2015 The author discusses German war aims in the decades leading up to 1914, in passing comparing the analysis of Fritz Fischer with those of

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Conflict endemic to the human condition?

John A. Moses ‘Conflict endemic to the human condition? A note’, Honest History, 8 April 2015 The ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus (c. 535-475 BC) commented on war as follows: ‘We must know that war is common to all, and strife

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van Weringh, Ilja: historiography resources

van Weringh, Ilja ‘Van Weringh’s library‘, Diigo Collection of historiographical links with particular reference to start of World War I but other great material also.

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Grey, Jeffrey, ed.: Great War centenary history

Grey, Jeffrey, ed. The Centenary History of Australia and the Great War, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2014-16 Five volume set, including Australia and the War in the Air (Volume 1) by Michael Molkentin, reviewed by Kristen Alexander, The War

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Getting war death numbers in context has long been a problem

Australian military deaths in the Boer War 1899-1902: 606; Boer civilian deaths, mostly women and children in concentration camps, 27 927, plus an unknown number of black Africans.

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Death cults were around in 1914

‘Whatever cult of the fallen was invented afterwards to invoke the Australian people’s perpetual care for the Anzacs in death, their neglect of them in life was starkly revealed in the plunge into war in July-August 1914. Constantly confronted, as

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Honest History list: Alan Seymour

Alan Seymour, author of The One Day of the Year, has died at the age of 87, more than five decades after his play asked important questions about Australians’ attitude to Anzac Day. While a new production was playing at

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Daley, Paul: Indigenous Diggers and Anzackery

Daley, Paul ‘Indigenous Diggers and the new age of Anzackery‘, Meanjin, 2 April 1915 Contrasts the commemorative festival with the treatment of an atypical Indigenous Digger, caught between cultures. The opening paragraphs are a good summary of the history of

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Honest History list: taking pictures

There have been a few interesting items recently on photography and things on screens so we cobbled together this list along with a few things that were on the site already. It’s the sort of thing we do at Honest

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Stevens, David: In all respects ready: Australia’s navy in World War One

Stevens, David In All Respects Ready: Australia’s Navy in World War One, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2014 When the newly built Australian fleet sailed into Sydney for the first time in October 1913, it was portrayed as a sign

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Great War navy

‘Great War navy’, Honest History, 27 March 2015 Alan Stephens* reviews In All Respects Ready: Australia’s Navy in World War One, by David Stevens Late last year Australia embarked on an extraordinarily extensive and costly five-year commemoration of ‘100 Years

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Broinowski, Alison: ANZUS minus NZ, again?

Broinowski, Alison ‘ANZUS minus NZ, again?‘ Honest History, 25 March 2015 Considers Trans-Tasman efforts to get into the war in Iraq, particularly current New Zealand actions. Dr Broinowski is a committee member of Honest History and of Australians for War

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ANZUS minus NZ, again?

‘ANZUS minus NZ, again?’ Honest History, 26 March 2015 Alison Broinowski keeps up with Trans-Tasman manoeuvres Tony Abbott’s visit to New Zealand on 26 February was carefully coordinated with John Key’s announcement of a Kiwi military deployment to Iraq (see

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ABC Four Corners: Bringing the war home

ABC TV ‘Bringing the war home‘, Four Corners, 9 March 2015 Article by Quentin McDermott and Mary Fallon, transcript and video of story about after-effects of war service in Iraq and Afghanistan. ‘As Australia prepares to send more troops to

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Bach, Willy: Agent Orange in Vietnam

Bach, Willy Britain, Australia, the United States and Agent Orange in the Indochina Wars: Re-defining Chemical-Biological Warfare: research paper (6 March 2015) This article re-examines the sanitised history of Agent Orange and other defoliants used in the Indochina War between

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What Kemal (probably, possibly) did: Ataturk’s letter

The Gallipoli 1915: a century on conference last week heard mentions of the famous ‘Atatürk letter’. We have a number of relevant references on the Honest History website, some of them incorporating research that others may not have done. These

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Oppenheimer, Melanie: 100 years of Red Cross

Oppenheimer, Melanie The Power of Humanity: 100 Years of Australian Red Cross, Harper Collins, Sydney, 2014 This is the story of everyday Australians. It is a history of people helping people across “generations, united by a common passion and commitment

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Berzins, Hannah: Lest we forget the Frontier Wars

Berzins, Hannah ‘Lest we forget the Frontier Wars‘, Vimeo (video, 2014) The 2o minute video describes massacres at Murdering Island and Poison Waterholes Creek, near Narrandera, NSW, and considers how such events, and the Frontier Wars generally, should be commemorated.

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Brasch, Sarah: Our national cathedral? Last Post at the Memorial

Sarah Brasch ‘Our national cathedral?‘ Honest History, 15 March 2015 Describes the Last Post ceremony held almost every evening at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. The author finds the ceremony ‘has a liturgy all of its own and a

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Our national cathedral?

‘Our national cathedral?’ Honest History, 15 March 2015 Sarah Brasch* attends the Last Post ceremony at the Australian War Memorial Unlike Washington DC, Canberra does not have a National Cathedral. But since 17 April 2013 our capital has had something

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ABC RN Saturday Extra: Military anniversaries

ABC Radio National ‘Military anniversaries‘, Saturday Extra, 14 March 2015 Geraldine Doogue talks with Peter Stanley about anniversaries occurring in 2015. The dates commemorated are 1815, 1915, 1940, 1945 and 1975, as well as one non-military, 1215. An event of

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Hazlehurst, Cameron: ten journeys to Cameron’s Farm

Hazlehurst, Cameron Ten Journeys to Cameron’s Farm: an Australian Tragedy, ANU E-press, Canberra, 2013 A book on the 1940 Canberra air disaster and the lives leading up to it of its victims, including three Cabinet Ministers and the Chief of

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Deery, Phillip & Julie Kimber, ed.: Fighting against War

Deery, Phillip & Julie Kimber, ed. Fighting against War: Peace Activism in the Twentieth Century, Leftbank Press/Australian Society for the Study of Labour History, Melbourne, 2015 The book includes 15 of the papers delivered at the 14th Biennial Labour History

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Robertson, Emily: Propaganda at home (Australia)

Robertson, Emily ‘Propaganda at home (Australia)‘, Ute Daniel et al., ed., 1914-1918 Online: International Encyclopedia of the First World War, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, 2015 Australian government propaganda was subordinate to state and federal recruiting bodies and thus was mainly tasked with maintaining

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Thompson, Janna: Assault on the life of a people

Thompson, Janna ‘An assault on the life of a people‘, Inside Story, 23 February 2015 Almost one hundred years ago, in the midst of the first world war, Ottoman officials forced Armenian people living in Anatolia to leave their homes

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Review note: ‘These are our stories’ – Defining Moments at NMA

‘Review note: “These are our stories” – Defining Moments at the National Museum of Australia’, Honest History, 3 March 2015 Cultural institutions tell stories. At the entrance to the National Museum of Australia, on its promontory on Canberra’s Lake Burley

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Military-industrial complex has suburban reach: Honest History Factsheet

Update 20 June 2016: Canadian example of how an arms manufacturer manipulates the local employment angle. __________________ Since the days of muskets and Gatling guns Australian forces have used weapons built somewhere else. In the modern era, being locked into

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Laugesen, Amanda: Furphies and Whizz-bangs

Laugesen, Amanda Furphies and Whizz-bangs: Anzac Slang from the Great War, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, 2014 Furphies and Whizz-bangs: Anzac Slang from the Great War tells the story of the First World War through an examination of the slang used

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Words in the trenches: Anzac slang reviewed

‘Words in the trenches: Anzac slang reviewed’, Honest History, 3 March 2015 Paul Daley, author and journalist with Guardian Australia, reviews Furphies and Whizz-bangs: Anzac Slang from the Great War, by Amanda Laugesen ‘Mate, I’m tellin’ yer the point blank

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Burdens of battle

‘Men killed, and died, because they were embarrassed not to. It was what had brought them to the war in the first place, nothing positive, no dreams of glory or honor, just to avoid the blush of dishonor. They died

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Auschwitz

The stuff of memory. ‘We survivors do not want our past to be our children’s future.’ (Roman Kent, Auschwitz survivor, at 70th anniversary commemoration) Breadth of vision. Number of items in Australian War Memorial collections tagged ‘Gallipoli’: 13352; number of items tagged

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North, David: The Russian Revolution and the Unfinished Twentieth Century

North, David The Russian Revolution and the Unfinished Twentieth Century, Mehring Books, Strawberry Hills, NSW, 2014; e-book available One hundred years after the outbreak of World War I and the Russian Revolution, none of the problems of the twentieth century—devastating

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Russian Revolution, world history and Australia

‘The Russian Revolution, world history and Australia’, Honest History, 18 February 2015 David Stephens reviews David North’s The Russian Revolution and the Unfinished Twentieth Century (and notes the same author’s In Defense of Leon Trotsky) Elsewhere on this website historians

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Newton’s Hell-Bent reviewed

Rod Olsen reviews Douglas Newton’s Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap into the Great War ‘War is nothing but a continuation of politics with the admixture of other means.’ (Clausewitz) ‘War is unlike life … It’s a denial of everything you learn life

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Kerkhove, Ray: Aboriginal guerilla tactics Southern Queensland 1843-55

Kerkhove, Ray ‘A different mode of war? Aboriginal “guerilla tactics” in defining the “Black War” of Southern Queensland 1843-1855: a paper presented July 2014 AHA Conference, University of Queensland, Brisbane’, Honest History, 3 February 2015 Frontier violence and Indigenous resistance

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Exponential

The catalogue of the National Library of Australia (NLA) records that during the 1970s just 51 personal narratives of the Great War were published. That number grew to 98 during the 1980s; there were 153 published during the 1990s and 215

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Stephens, David: ADFA presentation on teaching children about war

David Stephens ‘Top down, bottom up, or bit by bit? Teaching children about war: paper to ADFA Summer School, 21 January 2015‘, Honest History, 21 January 2015 These are notes of a presentation to the UNSW Canberra ADFA Summer School

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Highlights reel: James Fallows on US military has Australian relevance

‘Highlights reel: James Fallows on “The tragedy of the American military”‘, Honest History, 14 January 2015 This long article in The Atlantic, January-February 2015, examines American attitudes to the military but makes points applicable to Australia, given the long-running change

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Keneally, Thomas: Australians: Flappers to Vietnam

Keneally, Thomas Australians: Flappers to Vietnam, Allen & Unwin, Crows Nest, NSW, 2014 This is the third volume in the novelist-historian’s take on Australia. Volume 1; volume 2. It looks at behavioural change, consumerism and nascent left and right wing

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Keneally’s Australians Volume 3 reviewed

‘Australians: Flappers to Vietnam reviewed’, Honest History, 18 December 2014 David Stephens reviews Thomas Keneally’s Australians: Flappers to Vietnam, the third volume in the author’s history of Australia. See Volume 1 and Volume 2. This is a fascinating but flawed

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Stanley, Peter: Who are the liars? Response to Colebatch

Stanley, Peter ‘“Who are the liars?” A response to Hal Colebatch’s Australia’s Secret War‘, Honest History, 17 December 2014 Professor Stanley closely analyses Dr Colebatch’s book, joint winner of the Prime Minister’s Prize for Australian History 2014. Professor Stanley concludes

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Who are the liars? Response to Colebatch

Peter Stanley ‘”Who are the liars?” A response to Hal Colebatch’s Australia’s Secret War’, Honest History, 17 December 2014 Hal Colebatch asks in Quadrant Online, ‘So, Professor Stanley, Who Are the Liars?’ Er, no one, I answer. Who says that

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Colebatching: a previous joint winner on the PM’s award

Peter Stanley, Honest History President and previous joint winner of the Prime Minister’s Award for History, has written on The Drum about the work of the most recent joint winner, Hal GP Colebatch (Australia’s Secret War). Colebatch’s Australia’s Secret War

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Horn, Jonathan: Let’s not equate players with Anzacs

Horn, Jonathan ‘Sport is brutal – but let’s not equate players with Anzacs‘, Guardian Australia, 10 September 2014 Describes how sports team ‘channel’ the Australian Digger, quoting Mick Malthouse, Steve Waugh, Alan Bond and Michael Clarke – and Ben Roberts-Smith

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Davidson, Jim: Sport with guns

Davidson, Jim ‘Sport with guns‘, Meanjin, 67, 4, Summer 2008, pp.10-13 Suggests that Australia’s ‘celebration of the military’ has addled our consciousness, in the way that, according to Patrick White, sport had done. ‘The two things are connected. Under John

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Newton, Douglas: Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap into the Great War

Newton, Douglas Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap into the Great War, Scribe, Brunswick, Vic, 2014 Most histories of Australia’s Great War rush their readers into the trenches. This history is very different. For the first time, it examines events closely, even hour-by-hour,

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Bongiorno, Frank: Douglas Newton’s Hell-Bent launched

Frank Bongiorno ‘Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap into the Great War, by Douglas Newton, Scribe, 2014: Canberra Launch, Australian National University, 28 November 2014’, Honest History, 7 December 2014 There is a powerful myth concerning the way Australia behaves in international affairs.

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NAIDOC Week 2014: Trojan Horse or diversion?

This post replaces an earlier collection of material related to NAIDOC. The original post was unable to be updated for technical reasons, so we have created a new post with a new title where we intend to place related material

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Stephens, David: Do spiffing war yarns persist?

Stephens, David ‘Empire sun has set but do spiffing war yarns persist?‘ Honest History, 2 December 2014 This analytical piece compares WH Fitchett’s 1897 Deeds that Won the Empire: Historic Battle Scenes with Audacity: Stories of Heroic Australians in Wartime,

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Do spiffing war yarns persist?

David Stephens ‘Empire sun has set but do spiffing war yarns persist?’ Honest History, 2 December 2014 Some talk of Alexander And some of Hercules Of Hector and Lysander And such great names as these. But of all the world’s

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Miscellany: militarisation still marching?

Honest History continually collects resources to add to our growing database on the theme of ‘not only Anzac but also (lots of other strands of Australian history)’. Of course, our interest – and the times – being what they are

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Wounded and damaged soldiers then and now: Honest History Factsheet

This small collection highlights the trauma that is associated with all wars in all eras in all countries. It was provoked by an article in The Independent highlighting the photographs made by Bryan Adams of wounded British soldiers from Afghanistan.

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Honest History list: Remembrance Day analysed

These articles, some new, some already on our website, raise some important aspects of Remembrance Day, once Armistice Day, always ‘the eleventh day of the eleventh month – and at the eleventh hour’, one of the earliest mantras many of

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Socialist Alternative: War! What For?

Socialist Alternative War? What For? an Anti-War Centenary Newspaper, Socialist Alternative, Carlton South, Vic., 2014 The presentation and use of history during the centenary of the Great War should involve the exposure of conflicting, evidence-based interpretations. This publication from Socialist

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Cahill, Rowan: Future of history

Cahill, Rowan ‘The future of history‘, Overland, 29 October 2014 Considers former prime minister John Howard’s book on former prime minister Robert Menzies (The Menzies Era) and moves on to remarks about current politics. Cahill says the book is ‘an

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Sheedy, Chris: For queen & country

Sheedy, Chris ‘For queen & country‘, Canberra Times, 31 October 2014 Useful corrective to the ‘other people’s wars’ argument about Australia’s entry into World War I. Quotes at length from historian, Craig Stockings, about how most Australians of 1914 saw

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Stephens, David: does arms spending lead to war?

Stephens, David ‘Does arms spending lead to war?‘ Honest History, 4 November 2014 and updated The article compares defence spending as a proportion of gross domestic product – the proportion has been around two per cent for more than 50

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Does arms spending lead to war?

David Stephens ‘Does arms spending lead to war?’ Honest History, 4 November 2014 The concepts of Australian defence spending as a proportion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and as a proportion of total expenditure are both well-known. The former particularly

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Paul Daley on the NMA’s defining moments

Paul Daley writes in the Guardian Australia in praise of the National Museum of Australia’s list of defining moments in our history and of its initiative in seeking public comments. He quotes the prime minister’s remarks opening the exhibition, questions

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University of SA: Hawke lecture series

University of South Australia Annual Hawke Lecture Series Podcasts, audios, some transcripts, some papers from the following wide-ranging speakers and topics going backwards from 2014 to 1998: Hugh White on comparisons between 1914 and 2014; Elizabeth Blackburn on biology and

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Columbans: Way of Peace materials

St Columbans Mission Society The Way of Peace: Anzac Centenary Edition (1915-2015) A set of discussion and action sheets enabling Christian reflection and response during the Anzac centenary and beyond. The materials cover growing a culture of peace, power and

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Beaumont, Joan, et al.: ANU Archives annual lectures

Beaumont, Joan, et al. ANU Archives Annual Lectures The ANU Archives and the Friends of the Noel Butlin Archives Centre sponsor an annual lecture in Canberra and podcasts or vodcasts of recent ones are available. They include: 2014 Professor Joan Beaumont,

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Diamadis, Panayiotis: Broken Hill and Syria

Diamadis, Panayiotis ‘History repeating: from the Battle of Broken Hill to the sands of Syria‘, The Conversation, 3 October 2014 Compares the events surrounding the attack by two Afghans on picnickers at Broken Hill on New Year’s Day 1915 with

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Review note: a ‘non-khaki’ view of Australia

‘A “non-khaki view” of Australia: “defining moments” matched against Honest History themes’, Honest History, 7 October 2014 updated Background The National Museum of Australia has put together 100 ‘defining moments’ in Australian history. The aim is ‘to stimulate a public discussion

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Holt, Stephen: An unlikely leftist

Holt, Stephen ‘An unlikely leftist: Douglas Berneville-Claye‘, Honest History, 7 October 2014 A case study in dishonest history at the personal level, which speaks to both the irresistible attraction of wartime fame and the inevitability of exposure by the forces

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Douglas Berneville-Claye: unlikely leftist

Holt, Stephen ‘An unlikely leftist: Douglas Berneville-Claye’, Honest History, 7 October 2014 Domestic opposition to Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam War in the 1960s and early 1970s was a potent force. The opposition was a mass movement which attracted idiosyncratic

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Lest We Forget collection reviewed

‘Lest We Forget comes out of the West’, Honest History, 7 October 2014 Paddy Gourley* reviews Bobbie Oliver & Sue Summers, ed., Lest We Forget? Marginalised Aspects of Australia at War and Peace, Black Swan Press, Curtin University, Perth, WA,

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Rudd, Kevin: WWI centenary lessons

Rudd, Kevin ‘Centenary lessons: twentieth century Europe & twenty-first century Asia‘, Horizons (Centre for International Relations and Sustainable Development), September 2014 Based on a lecture delivered in Berlin in May 2014. In this important year of international reflection on the

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Highlights reel: Elizabeth Samet on soldiers dying in vain

‘Highlights reel: Elizabeth Samet on soldiers dying in vain’, Honest History, 23 September 2014 and updated Elizabeth Samet teaches English to first-year cadets at the United States Military Academy at West Point. In a recent article in Foreign Policy she

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PM and President: the usual channels

Following are some statements by Prime Minister Abbott and then President George W. Bush, announcing action against terror groups and ‘jihadists’. ‘Regrettably, around the world and in this country itself, there are people who would do us harm. There are

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Seal, Graham: Inventing Anzac

Seal, Graham Inventing Anzac: The Digger and Modern Mythology, University of Queensland Press, St Lucia, 2004 Anzac and the digger lie at the centre of Australian national identity. Separate but intertwined, their respective traditions have generated and maintained a potent

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Review note: more Great War miscellany

‘Review note: more Great War miscellany’, Honest History, 7 September 2014 This is a further round-up of recent (and recently discovered) writing on Anzac and World War I. Earlier ones are accessible here. We are trying to do no more

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McQueen, Humphrey: Review Other Side of Frontier

McQueen, Humphrey ‘Part III: Review of Reynolds The Other Side of the Frontier (1981)’, Honest History, 2 September 2014 Henry Reynolds’s The Other Side of the Frontier: An Interpretation of the Aboriginal Response to the Invasion and Settlement of Australia,

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McQueen, Humphrey: Preface to The Black Resistance

McQueen, Humphrey ‘Part II: Preface to The Black Resistance (1977)’, Honest History, 2 September 2014 The publication of the lecture in Part I stimulated a group of students to widen and deepen the sketch in the lecture. This became Fergus

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McQueen, Humphrey: Defending Australia from the Pink Peril

McQueen, Humphrey ‘Part I: Defending Australia from the Pink Peril (1973)’, Honest History, 2 September 2014 From a lecture given in Australian History III, Australian National University, July 1973. It was later printed in Woroni (ANU) 16 July 1973, then

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McQueen, Humphrey: Pioneering writing on Frontier Wars

McQueen, Humphrey ‘The real battle for Australia: pioneering writing on the Frontier Wars (Parts I-III)’, Honest History, 2 September 2014 Introduction by David Stephens With the co-operation of the author, we have collected here three pieces of writing by historian

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Honest History list: wartime spin

One hundred years ago today, 1 September 1914, this item appeared in The Brisbane Courier: THE BRITISH FORCES. OFFICIAL V. OTHER REPORTS. A REASSURING STATEMENT. LONDON, Sunday Night The Government Press Bureau states that its account of the fortunes of

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Buch, Neville: Fighting the Great War

Buch, Neville ‘Why this war in this way? A note on the Great War’, Honest History, 28 August 2014 The question of whether World War I can be justified, either at the time, or looking back now, has overshadowed the

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Black Diggers and Frontier Wars

Honest History has a number of resources on these related issues. This article provoked by NAIDOC Week 2014 includes links to a number of articles discussing both the Frontier Wars and the rediscovered role of Indigenous servicemen. Peter Stanley gave

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Stillman, Sarah: Hiroshima and trauma

Stillman, Sarah ‘Hiroshima and the inheritance of trauma‘, New Yorker, 12 August 2014 In recent years, a public-health hypothesis has emerged that one of the world’s most poorly understood pandemics isn’t a conventional virus—like H1N1, say, or some hemorrhagic fever.

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DVA: Timeline: Australians at war 1901-2000

Department of Veterans’ Affairs ‘Timeline: Australians at war 1901-2000‘, Researching Gallipoli Concise timeline in 20 pages, illustrated. The years of World War I and 1945 alone receive a page each. Links to other parts of DVA’s historical resources.

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Lest we abuse their memory

‘Lest we abuse their memory’, Honest History, 7 August 2014 Richard Thwaites* reviews Shanti Sumartojo and Ben Wellings, ed., Nation, Memory and Great War Commemoration: Mobilizing the Past in Europe, Australia and New Zealand, Peter Lang, Bern, 2014 The powerful

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Retracing Kokoda: in defence of historical revisionism

Anthony Cooper ‘Retracing Kokoda: in defence of historical revisionism’, Honest History, 4 August 2014 Somehow, ‘revisionism’ in military history has been turned by some people into a dirty word. Since when did the self-evidently rational process of ‘revising’ or ‘reviewing’

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December in Kabul, 1841

In December 1841, the British Envoy in Kabul, Sir William McNaghten, wrote to his superior, Lord Auckland, in these terms, as the British occupying force prepared to leave Afghanistan. ‘We shall part with the Afghans as friends, and I feel

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The small print on Veterans’ Affairs

Administrative history throws up interesting stories. Here’s one. The Department of Veterans’ Affairs has been involved in commemorations since 1990, implementing such notable enterprises as Australia Remembers in 1995, Saluting their Service after that, and now the Anzac Centenary Local

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Our martial tradition

Conflict, it seems, is part of the human condition, and we must always be ready for it… This exhibition … shows the continuity of our martial tradition and of our national character. Tony Abbott, as Opposition Leader, speaking at the

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Woodrow Wilson wonders what he has done

Woodrow Wilson was puzzled at the exultant reaction to his April 1917 speech to Congress asking for a declaration of war. ‘My message tonight was a message of death for our young men… How strange it seems to applaud that.’

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Britain’s biggest error?

‘Britain entering first world war was “biggest error in modern history”” (English historian Niall Ferguson; attracting 800 comments) ‘If war breaks out, it will be the greatest catastrophe the world has ever seen’. (British Foreign Secretary, Sir Edward Grey, 1914,

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Afghanistan at Australian War Memorial

The Australian War Memorial has mounted a new exhibition, Afghanistan: the Australian story. Director Brendan Nelson has recognised the need to get the balance right between depicting past and current wars and this exhibition delivers on that commitment. The exhibition,

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Wellings, Ben & Shanti Sumartojo, ed.: Nation, memory and Great War commemoration

Sumartojo, Shanti & Ben Wellings, ed. Nation, Memory and Great War Commemoration: Mobilizing the Past in Europe, Australia and New Zealand, Peter Lang, Oxford, 2014 Sixteen contributors discuss aspects of how Great War commemoration has developed in a range of

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The cornerstone

Military history provides the foundation for Army training, education, esprit de corps, and decisionmaking. The lessons of the past form the doctrines of the future. These lessons are not based on poorly recorded or understood events. History is a way

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Bastian, Peter: Andrew Fisher

Bastian, Peter Andrew Fisher: an Underestimated Man, University of New South Wales Press, Sydney, 2009 Hoping to set the record straight, this biography asks why one of Australia’s greatest reformers has sunk into obscurity. Calling for a reevaluation of Andew Fisher’s career,

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Highlights reel: and the war came

‘Highlights reel: ‘and the war came’, Honest History, 4 August 2014 Hobart Regatta photos from the Weekly Courier newspaper, January 1914 (Flickr Commons/Tasmanian Archive and Heritage Office) This highlights reel takes extracts from Australian press editorials and other published material

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Cooper, Anthony: Kokoda revised

Cooper, Anthony ‘Retracing Kokoda: in defence of historical revisionism‘, Honest History, 4 August 2014 Critics of revisionism in history, including military history, assume that there is only one version of the story. But historians should interpret evidence and new evidence

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Soviet World War II posters at the Australian War Memorial

At a time when events in the Ukraine have brought to the fore attitudes to the role of Russia in world affairs, the Australian War Memorial happens to be hosting a number of talks highlighting Soviet World War II propaganda

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Review note: Great War miscellany

‘Review note: Great War miscellany’, Honest History, 18 July 2014 This is our third roundup of the embarrassment of riches coming to our attention in the World War I centenary period. It is a bit broader in sweep than our

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Arango, Tim: Gallipoli and national identities

Arango, Tim ‘At Gallipoli, a campaign that laid ground for national identities‘, New York Times, 26 June 2014 An American views the Gallipoli legacy from both Turkish and Australian perspectives. He interviews Rupert Murdoch on the role of his father,

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Highlights reel: HB Higgins on militarism

‘Highlights reel: HB Higgins on militarism’, Honest History, 11 July 2014 There may be a generational aspect to intellectual endeavour among public men and women. Whether it is because statesmen (very few stateswomen then) at the turn of the twentieth

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Stanley, Peter: NAIDOC Week 2014 ADFA address

Stanley, Peter ‘NAIDOC Week 2014 address at Australian Defence Force Academy, 10 July 2014, Honest History, 10 July 2014 Ladies and gentlemen, colleagues. I’m honoured to have been asked to speak today and, in doing so, I acknowledge the traditional

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Commemorating our warriors – all of them

NAIDOC Week sees two important articles about the need to comprehensively commemorate all who have shed blood for their country. Paul Daley writes in the Guardian Australia that it is ‘inconsistent to celebrate Indigenous Australians’ service in Imperial armies while

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MAPW et al: Enduring effects of war

Medical Association for Prevention of War, Act for Peace & History Teachers’ Association of Victoria The Enduring Effects of War: Introduction, MAPW, Act for Peace and HTAV, Melbourne, 2014 Comprehensive (125 pages) and realistic lesson materials (pdf with links) prepared

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War heroes and Boys’ Own adventures

David Stephens writes in Independent Australia about how the mateship of service life and the poignancy of service deaths obscures the pointlessness of ‘sacrifice’ when there is no connection to the national interest. Hero worship of the military also gets

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Stephens, David: Conservative commemoration

Stephens, David ‘Anzac Centenary Local Grants: conservative commemoration’, Honest History, 30 June 2014 This note comments on the statistics set out in Honest History Factsheet No. 2 on the Anzac Centenary Local Grants Program. Ken Inglis says in his book

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Common interests of Germany and Great Britain: 100 years ago today

Around about now, the focus on matters 100 years ago is very sharp. There is even a statue of Gavrilo Princip being unveiled in Sarajevo. Our own small contribution is to draw attention to an opinion piece in the Sydney

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Noonan, David: recounting WWI casualties

Noonan, David Those We Forget: Recounting Australian Casualties of the First World War, Melbourne University Publishing, Carlton, Vic., 2014 The book argues that ‘official Australian casualty statistics suffered by the men of the Australian Imperial Force in the First World

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Review note: Australian war correspondents and war historians

‘Review note: Australian war correspondents and war historians’, Honest History, 20 June 2014 and updated CEW Bean, the eminent war historian, began as a war correspondent. His work is represented by selections from his diary, the Official History, and the

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Oliver, Bobbie & Sue Summers, ed.: marginalised remembrance

Oliver, Bobbie & Sue Summers, ed. Lest We Forget? Marginalised Aspects of Australia at War and Peace, Black Swan Press, Curtin University, Perth, WA, 2014 The book asks what is being remembered and what is being forgotten within our war

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Greig, Andrew: Taming war

Greig, Andrew Taming War: Culture and Technology for Peace, Peace Power Press, Avalon Beach, NSW, 2007 War is a very poor way to settle differences. Most of us know it’s stupid, but war goes on. It seems a shame that

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Peacebus: Frontier Wars 2014

Peacebus ‘Lest we forget the Frontier Wars 2014: report of the fourth annual “Lest we forget the Frontier Wars” March @ the Australian War Memorial, 25 April 2014‘, Peacebus, 1 June 2014 Describes and illustrates demonstration held to commemorate the

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Blinkered commemoration at the Australian War Memorial

David Stephens writes in Fairfax media 10 June 2o14 about the parochial approach taken by the Australian War Memorial to commemoration, despite the possibilities offered by its legislation for a broader perspective. The hard copy in the Canberra Times 11

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Review note: more Anzac miscellany 2014

‘Review note: more Anzac miscellany 2014’, Honest History, 24 May 2014 Honest History’s David Stephens has an article on Australian Independent Media Network, ‘Five arguments for downsizing Anzac‘, which reworks his speeches at the Canberra Peace Convergence and at a

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Review note: Battle of Indigenous warriors

‘Review note: the Battle of the Indigenous warriors’, Honest History, 24 May 2014 and updated A notable element of the Anzac centenary is the attention being paid to the stories of Indigenous soldiers wearing the King’s uniform in the two

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Gardiner, Eric: Headless pines (war Penguins)

Gardiner, Eric ‘Headless pines‘, Meanjin, 73, 2, June 2014 Review by a Meanjin intern of the ‘War Popular Penguins‘ (Patsy Adam-Smith, The Anzacs; Ernst Jünger, Storm of Steel; George Walter, The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry; Frederic Manning, The Middle Parts of

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Ball, Martin: Pro patria mori

Ball, Martin ‘Pro patria mori’, Meanjin, 63, 3, Spring 2004, pp. 3-12 Often in times of war, art and literature can become part of a number of forces that legitimate or sugar-coat warfare. In this essay, the author discusses first

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Wadham, Ben: Camouflage and national identity

Wadham, Ben ‘Camouflage and national identity’, Honest History, 22 May 2014 Tropes of sacrifice, duty and honour that mark the birth of a nation are like camouflage that seeks to hide the truth from the viewer. But in this case,

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Gilbertson, Ashleigh: Singapore Conference 2014

Gilbertson, Ashleigh ‘A different kind of imperial war: conference report: The British Empire and the Great War: Colonial Societies/Cultural Responses, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, 19-22 February 2014’, Honest History, 22 May 2014 315 Gilbertson A different kind of imperial war

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Jacobs, Genevieve: Anzac Day at Wallendbeen

Jacobs, Genevieve ‘Anzac Day at Wallendbeen’, Honest History, 22 May 2014 Genevieve Jacobs gave the 2014 Anzac Day address at Wallendbeen, NSW (population 316). She is a presenter with ABC Local Radio, Canberra. 310 Jacobs Wallendbeen The speech questions high

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Review note: Anzac miscellany 2014

‘Review note: Anzac miscellany 2014’, Honest History, 30 April 2014 Anzac Day and the period surrounding it always produces reflective pieces, as well as colour supplements and, increasingly, promotional links to football games. In 2014, 99 years on, the number

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Maloney, Shane & Chris Grosz: Franz Ferdinand and platypus

Maloney, Shane & Chris Grosz ‘Archduke Franz Ferdinand & the platypus‘, The Monthly, May 2011 Whimsically explores the visit to Australia in 1893 of the unfortunate Archduke, noting his penchant for barbecued meat and for shooting large amounts of wildlife,

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Manne, Robert: Unlikely radical Malcolm Fraser

Manne, Robert ‘An unlikely radical‘, Sydney Morning Herald, 26 April 2014 Lengthy article based on interview with former prime minister, Malcolm Fraser, about his forthcoming book, Dangerous Allies. Fraser believes Australia should cut all military ties to the United States.

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ABC: Moral Compass on war and peace

ABC The Moral Compass, 27 April 2014 Geraldine Doogue talks with James Brown, author and former soldier, Leslie Cannold, ethicist, Ken Doolan, National President of the RSL, and Peter Stanley, social-military historian and President, Honest History, on issues to do

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Stephens, David: Parochial commemoration

Stephens, David ‘Parochial commemoration of war‘, Pearls and Irritations [John Menadue’s blog], 23 April 2014 Guest blog arguing that the Australian War Memorial narrowly defines its own legislation with the result that the Memorial ‘is missing many opportunities to expand

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Abbott, Tony: Anzac Day 2014

Abbott, Tony Address to the Anzac Day national ceremony, Canberra, Friday, 25 April 2014 As someone who has never served in the armed forces, never faced a shot fired in anger, and never lost close family members in war, I

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Rose, James: Family at war

Rose, James ‘A family at war‘, Age, 14 April 2014 Raises issues about whether the final say in commemorating a dead service person rests with the state (represented in this case by the Australian War Memorial), supported by service organisations

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Teaching children about war

Update 9 June 2015: Simpson Prize and Audacity The Simpson Prize question for 2016 continues the welcome recent trend to ask proper history questions of Year 9 and 10 students but the nomination of the war-sanitising Audacity for a Children’s

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Poole, RJ: Anzac speech Lismore 2014

Poole, RJ ‘Anzac Speech, 25 April 2014, Remembering and Healing service, Lismore’, Honest History, 30 April 2014 I think it’s appropriate that we honour those Australians who have died in a theatre of conflict – and I think it’s right

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Stephens, David: Remembering and Healing in Lismore

Stephens, David ‘Alternative Anzac: Remembering and Healing in Lismore models a peaceful world’, Honest History, 30 April 2014 (updated 27 June 2014) If you live in Canberra and have never been further north on the New South Wales coast than

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Oswald, Bruce & Waddell, Jim, ed.: Military lawyers

Oswald, Bruce & Waddell, Jim, ed. Justice in Arms: Military Lawyers in the Australian Army’s First Hundred Years, Big Sky, Newport, NSW, 2014 Describes the work of Army legal officers in Australia and in expeditionary operations from the Boer War

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Dean, Peter, ed.: Australia 1943

Dean, Peter, ed. Australia 1943: the Liberation of New Guinea, Cambridge University Press, Port Melbourne, 2013 Includes chapters on the strategies of both sides and on army, navy and air operations in the Pacific and New Guinea. Authors include Dean,

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Hemming, Judy & Michael McKinley: Psychopathology of drones

Hemming, Judy & Michael McKinley ‘Expanding space, compressing time and the psychopathology of drones: paper presented to the 55th Annual Convention Panel TD 49 The International Studies Association, 27 March 2014, Toronto, Canada’ The paper 268 Hemming McKinley Toronto ISAPaper

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Sluga, Glenda: Historians’ war

Sluga, Glenda ‘Historians’ war’, Honest History, 30 March 2014 256 Sluga Historians War Christopher Clark, expatriate Australian historian based at Cambridge, has aroused great interest in Europe with his new book, The Sleepwalkers, tracing how the nations of Europe moved

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Beaumont, Joan, et al: Asia today – 1914 redux?

Beaumont, Joan, Evelyn Goh, Michael Wesley, Hugh White, ‘Asia today – 1914 redux?’ ANU School of International Political and Strategic Studies seminar, Canberra, 18 March 2014 Notes of the seminar were prepared by David Stephens. Read more… 258 Asia Today

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Webb, Carolyn: Female doctors in World War I

Webb, Carolyn ‘Maverick female war doctors battled exclusion’, The Age, 15 March 2014 The article Maverick female war doctors battled exclusion-1 (text here) describes the work during World War I of Dr Vera Scantlebury (later Scantlebury-Brown), originally of Melbourne, in

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Hannaford, Scott: Silent war

Hannaford, Scott ‘The silent war‘, Canberra Times, 8 February 2014 Article and interactive material on the experiences of Australian veterans of the war in Afghanistan. While the technology of war has ‘advanced’ much of the evidence recounted could be applied

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Daley, Paul: Indigenous remains

Daley, Paul ‘Restless indigenous remains‘, Meanjin, 73, 1, March 2014 The author explores the storage facilities of the National Museum of Australia and writes about the implications for the way we treat the dead from our wars, overseas and at

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Morrison, David: Welcome home parade

Morrison, David ‘Welcome Home Parade for 2nd Cavalry Regiment Task Group and Combined Team – Uruzgan Four and Five: Lieutenant General David Morrison, AO, Chief of Army Darwin, 1 March 2014‘ LTGEN Morrison spoke on the 113th anniversary of the founding

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Green, Michael: Once were warriors

Green, Michael ‘Once were warriors‘, The Age, 5 February 2014 Looks at moves in Melbourne to commemorate two Indigenous warriors, hung in 1842 for killing two white men. The City Council has agreed to a memorial but needs to decide

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Watson, Don: Over the top

Watson, Don ‘Lest we go over the top‘, The Monthly, February 2014 ‘The experience of war very much depends’, the author says, ‘on where one happens to be standing at the time.’ Front line soldiers, generals, writers and politicians all

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Abbott, Tony: Darwin welcome home

Abbott, Tony Remarks at the 1st Brigade Welcome Home Reception, Parliament House, Darwin, 1 March 2014 The Prime Minister noted that the Afghanistan commitment had been inconclusive militarily but praised the social contribution made by Australian forces. Thanks to you,

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Wadham, Ben: Militarisation and hate

Wadham, Ben ‘Yumi and Ben: the militarisation of Australia and the democratisation of hate‘, The Conversation, 6 March 2012 Analyses the sexist and racist reaction to the insulting remarks made by a television personality about a Victoria Cross winner. The

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Brown, James: Anzac’s Long Shadow

Brown, James Anzac’s Long Shadow: The Cost of Our National Obsession, Black Inc, Melbourne, 2014; also available electronically “A century ago we got it wrong. We sent thousands of young Australians on a military operation that was barely more than

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Powell, Damian X.: Remembrance Day

Powell, Damian X. ‘Remembrance Day: memories and values in Australia since 1918’, Paper (edited text) read to the Royal Historical Society of Victoria on 18 November 2003 (later published as ‘Remembrance Day: memories and values in Australia since 1918’, Victorian

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Blaxland, John: Australian flag

Blaxland, John ‘Flying the flag for a fresh start‘, Canberra Times, 1 February 2014 Few realise that the overwhelming majority of Australia’s 102,000 war dead fought and died for the British Empire under Britain’s Union Jack as their national flag.

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Hughes Henry, Adam: Nationalism, politics, history and war

Hughes Henry, Adam ‘Nationalism, politics, history and war’, Australian Rationalist, 74, Winter, 2006, pp. 23-38 The article ranges widely, addressing the remembrance of war, death in conflict as a righteous sacrifice, war criminality, the distortion of history through the filter

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O’Lincoln, Tom: Kokoda and Anzac

O’Lincoln, Tom ‘Can Kokoda challenge Anzac?’ Paper delivered to conference The Pacific War 1941-45, Heritage, Legacies and Culture, Monash University at Caulfield, 6 December 2011 233 Can Kokoda challenge Anzac (pdf provided by author) The author argues that veneration of

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Stanley, Peter: Anzac’s Long Shadow highlights a national obsession

Stanley, Peter Honest History’s President, Professor Peter Stanley, reviews and reflects on James Brown’s new book, Anzac’s Long Shadow. James Brown, Anzac’s Long Shadow: The Cost of Our National Obsession, Black Inc, Melbourne, 2014, $19.99; also available electronically James Brown,

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Stanley, Peter: Anzac’s Long Shadow highlights a national obsession

Stanley, Peter ‘Anzac’s Long Shadow highlights a national obsession’ Honest History President, Professor Peter Stanley, reviews James Brown’s book (published 11 February 2014) and finds parallels with the attitudes of Honest History to the way in which Australia is approaching

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Jauncey meets Mephistopheles (18 February 2014)

In November 2013 I presented a keynote address to the biennial conference convened by the energetic Narratives of War Research Group of the University of South Australia. In it I compared Australia’s memory of war with that of various countries

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Hughes Henry, Adam: Boer war

Hughes Henry, Adam ‘Australian nationalism and the lost lessons of the Boer War‘, Journal of the Australian War Memorial, 34, June 2001 In the jingoism of the time [of the Boer War] can be seen the paradoxical nature of Australian

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Stephens, David: Hugh White on Australians and war

Stephens, David ‘Hugh White on Australians and war’, Honest History, 5 February 2014, updated Hugh White is Professor of Strategic Studies at the Australian National University and a former senior public servant in the Department of Defence. Here he considers

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Hyland, Tom: Afghanistan not reported or understood

Hyland, Tom ‘The worst-reported and least understood foreign conflict in Australian history‘, Inside Story, 22 January 2014 Review of Don’t Mention the War: The Australian Defence Force, the Media and the Afghan Conflict by  Kevin Foster. The reviewer notes that

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Evans, RJW: Greatest catastrophe

Evans, RJW ‘The greatest catastrophe the world has seen‘, New York Review of Books, 6 February 2014 Extended review of six books on the beginnings of World War I. The authors are Margaret Macmillan, Charles Emmerson, Sean McMeekin (two titles),

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Colebatch, Hal GP: Australia’s secret war

Colebatch, Hal GP Australia’s Secret War: How Unions Sabotaged our Troops in World War II, Quadrant Books, Balmain, NSW, 2013 Describes strikes and other industrial action on the waterfront during the war, its impact on the war effort and the

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Daley, Paul: Black diggers

Daley, Paul ‘Black diggers: challenging Anzac myths‘, Guardian Australia, 14 January 2014 Looks at the stories of black servicemen during World War I, in the context of a new play ‘Black Diggers’. About 400 Indigenous Australians joined up. Notes that

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Prior, Robin: Great War debate

Prior, Robin ‘The first world war and Australia – oh, what a loopy debate‘, Guardian Australia, 10 January 2014 Political considerations have swamped evidence-based consideration of the beginnings and course of World War I. Looking at the debate on various aspects

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Twomey, Christina: Trauma and Anzac reinvigoration

Christina Twomey writes in the December 2013 issue of History Australia arguing that changing ideas about trauma and victimhood, emerging from the 1980s, played an important and insufficiently recognised role in the reinvigoration of Anzac for contemporary times. The recasting

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Brissenden, Michael: Afghanistan media coverage

Brissenden, Michael ‘Afghanistan: the war we hardly knew‘, ABC The Drum, 14 November 2013 Discusses Department of Defence attitudes to media coverage of the war in Afghanistan. Attracted 145 comments. The culture of secrecy that has built up over recent

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Jauncey considers Keating on Remembrance Day (19 November 2013)

Paul Keating’s Remembrance Day speech 2013 marked the twentieth anniversary of his Unknown Australian Soldier speech at the Australian War Memorial in 1993. The tomb and the surrounding area at the Memorial has now been refurbished to include explicit recognition

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Cahill, Rowan: Khaki future?

Cahill, Rowan ‘A khaki future?‘ Overland, 1 October 2013 Brief history of Australia’s ‘martial and warlike’ history from 1788, noting military rule by the New South Wales Corps in the first days of settlement, through preparations for World War I,

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Keating, Paul: Remembrance Day 2013

Keating, Paul ‘Paul Keating’s address at the Australian War Memorial 2013: we are too wise to be cannon fodder again‘, Sydney Morning Herald, 11 November 2013 Speech (official text here) marking 2oth anniversary of Keating’s speech as Prime Minister at

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White, Hugh: Primal fears, primal ambitions

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