Blogging the Bookshelf

Blogging my bookshelf – one book at a time

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Entries Tagged as 'Australian History'

Menzies and the Red Ensign – “Recollections of a Bleeding Heart” – Don Watson

March 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on Menzies and the Red Ensign – “Recollections of a Bleeding Heart” – Don Watson · Australian, Australiana, Communism, Conservative Politics, History

No-one manipulated symbols better than Menzies, including the Australian flag which he made official by an act of parliament without referendum or public debate. In the half century preceding, three flags had flown in Australia’s name in peace and war—the Union Jack, the Defaced Red Ensign and the Defaced Blue Ensign. The Blue Ensign had […]

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The Australian and American Continents – “Recollections of a Bleeding Heart” – Don Watson

March 12th, 2012 · Comments Off on The Australian and American Continents – “Recollections of a Bleeding Heart” – Don Watson · Australian, Australiana, History

(Keating) made the point that Australians and Americans had both inherited continents, the ‘gift outright’ as the American poet Robert Frost called it. ‘[A]t first we were still England’s colonials. In time we gave ourselves to our new countries and the people and the land became one,’ Frost wrote. There was in there an echo […]

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So Why Didn’t an Australian Kill Hitler? – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 16th, 2012 · Comments Off on So Why Didn’t an Australian Kill Hitler? – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, War, WW1, WW2

The Luftwaffe bombed (Fromelles) on 27 May 1940, destroying some buildings when British ammunition trucks parked there were hit and exploded. The following day the Germans occupied the town once again. Then things went along uneventfully until 25 June, when France surrendered to the Germans. That very day, Chancellor Adolf Hitler, the former humble lance-corporal […]

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Don’t Forget me Cobber – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 16th, 2012 · Comments Off on Don’t Forget me Cobber – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, War, WW1

Bean highlights the work of one of the rescuers, 40 year old Victorian farmer, Sergeant Simon Fraser of the 57th Battalion, and quotes from a letter Fraser later wrote him: “It was no light work getting in with a heavy weight on you back, especially if he had a broken leg or arm and no […]

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Groaning Wounded – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 16th, 2012 · Comments Off on Groaning Wounded – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, Humanism, Philosophy, War, WW1

The reality was that, from midnight on the day of the battle, the flow of casualties had swamped the capacity of the medical staff and the stretcher-bearers and the front-line trenches were chock full of the wounded and dying… While the front lines were a confusion of wounded and dying, many more still lay exposed […]

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5533 Casualties – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on 5533 Casualties – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, War, WW1

On the afternoon of 20 July, the battalions which had attacked the previous evening gathered near their divisional headquarters and their losses were chillingly clear. Each of the three Australian brigades lost more than 1700 men, either killed, wounded, missing or captured. In one terrifying night the Australians suffered a total of 5533 casualties – […]

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No Man’s Land – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 15th, 2012 · 1 Comment · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, War, WW1

In one remarkable attempt to reach safety, a group of eleven men of the 8th Brigade, under the leadership of Captain Frank Krinks, decided to make a run for it as a group, vowing to stay and help any of their number who found trouble. Having decided to leave their weapons and rely on a […]

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We Prefer to be Killed by Germans – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay

January 15th, 2012 · Comments Off on We Prefer to be Killed by Germans – “Fromelles” – Patrick Lindsay · Anzac, Australian, Australiana, History, War, WW1

When they realised they were being shelled by their own guns, the Diggers reacted sharply, as Hugh Knyvett recalled: ‘Our first message… was very polite ‘ we preferred to be killed by the Germans, thank you’… two of our officers being killed, our next message was worded very differently, and we told them that ‘if […]

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“Goodbye Babylon: Further Journeys in Time and Politics” – Bob Ellis  It’s worth noting here that Chifley’s motives here weren’t Imperial, he was motivated by fraternal solidarity with the reforming Labour government then in power in the UK.

September 17th, 2011 · Comments Off on “Goodbye Babylon: Further Journeys in Time and Politics” – Bob Ellis  It’s worth noting here that Chifley’s motives here weren’t Imperial, he was motivated by fraternal solidarity with the reforming Labour government then in power in the UK. · Australian, Australiana, Campaigning, History, Policy, Politics, Progressive Politics, Uncategorized

(Chifley’s) most fatal flaw, I think, was his (and Curtin’s) belief that the frugal way of living they both had endured through all their years of battling childhoods and union struggle was all the Australian people should reasonably and properly hope for, and happily, obediently vote for, and they would cop food-rationing, and petrol-rationing, and […]

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On Labor Leadership – “Goodbye Babylon: Further Journeys in Time and Politics” – Bob Ellis 

September 16th, 2011 · Comments Off on On Labor Leadership – “Goodbye Babylon: Further Journeys in Time and Politics” – Bob Ellis  · Australian, Australian Labor Party, Australiana, History, Leadership, Politics, Quotes

A woman a Chifley’s funeral asserted “I know Mr Chifley’s in Heaven, because Labor Leaders have their hell on earth.

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