WORLD WAR I (1914-1918)• Australia recommended the importance of world peace throughdiplomatic measure instead of military combats. However, to look formilitary alliances for national security was also needed.• World War 1 started mid 1914 and ended 11 November 1918. It is alsoknown as the Great War and the First World War, fought between theAllied Forces and Central Powers.• Australia didn’t have any concern in it but war initiated to form self-governing colonies to federate as one nation and resulted the DefenceAct.• First World War began when Britain and Germany went to war (August1914). Prime Minister Andrew Fisher pledged full support for Britain.Alliances: partnership among countries Allied Forces: troops of the alliances
• Although there was opposition to Australia entering thisEuropean war, but British patriotic fervour resulted thousandsof men volunteering to help their ‘Mother Country’. Theoutbreak of war was greeted with great enthusiasm.• Besides, the need to support Britain fulfilled the agreement tohelp defend each other. It was significant since German andJapanese imperialism had spread widely and getting closer.They had colonized parts of Australia’s nearest neighbors.• Australia’s military contribution was extremely high.Approximately 420 000 men joined AIF, the AustralianImperial Force in which entirely a volunteer army. Incombination with New Zealand troops, the military forceknown as ANZAC.
• Australia suffered enormous casualties in the First World War especiallyat the battle in the Western Front. From a population of fewer than fivemillion, over 400 000 men joined military service, over 60,000 werekilled and 156,000 wounded, gassed, or taken prisoner.• Despite the brutalities of war in Europe, Australians are more familiarwith the battle at Gallipoli, Turkey (April to December 1915) to capturethe peninsula from the Turks to open the Dardanelle Straits to Alliedshipping. This campaign gave birth to the ‘Anzac Legend’.• After the battle of Gallipoli the number of volunteers fell away. Therewas conscription issue that divided the country bitterly into ‘pro’ and‘anti-conscription’.Casualties: people injured, killed, captured or missing in a military engagement Gassed: Attack with gasShipping: moving goods and materials by ship to one country conscription: compulsory military service
• The federal government made a propaganda campaign to raisesupport for the British Empire, led by the Labour Prime Minister,William ‘Billy’ Hudges. However , it was victories for the anti-conscriptionists because of the female vote such as mothers, wives andsweethearts who supported the ‘No” campaign.• The effects of World War I and the conscription issue resulted in socialand political turmoil. There were class differences and sectarian dividesbetween Irish Catholics and Protestants that became extremely bitter.• It also splits the labour party. Pro-British or pro-conscriptionistsformed the ‘Nationalist Party’. On the other hand, the Labour Partythat anti-conscriptionists attracted more socialists, pacifists andCatholics.Sectarian: a member of religious group Pacifist: who Opposed to war
• Along with Irish-Catholics and unionists, the Labour Party became moreoutspoken against the war and argued that it was a ‘trade’ war amongstimperialist nations of Europe.• Even though Bill Hudges support for the empire, he strictly defendedAustralia’s right to be treated as an independent nation at the VersaillesPeace Conference in Paris (January 1919).• Significantly, Hudges was able to gain the German colonies in the Pacific,which were mandated to Australia. Australia also became one of afounding member of the League of Nations.• After World War I, Australia started to loosen its ties with ‘MotherEngland’. However, patriotic imperial sentiments were still part of thecomplex issue in Australian society.Sectarian: a member of religious group Pacifist: who Opposed to war
WORLD WAR II (1939-1945)WAR IN EUROPE AND WAR IN THE PACIFIC• The war was fought between the Allied Nations (a group ofcountries that included Great Britain, the United States ofAmerica, Australia and New Zealand) against the Axis powers –spearheaded by Germany, Italy and Japan.• Although Australia gained ‘separate nation status’ as a memberof the League of Nations, it has no option but to accept andfollow the foreign policy of Britain. So that when Britain declaredwar on Germany ( 3 September 1939 ), Australia is also at war.• The First World War was still fresh in Australian memories,resulted great loss of life and also reduction in money spent ondefence. So, they were ill-prepared for this new war and lessenthusiastic about fighting Britain’s war.
• However, as Japan’s moves in Southeast Asia, Australiadecided to support Britain and to assure stability in thePacific. Australias involvement in the Second World Warannounced on every national and commercial radio stationin Australia by Prime Minister Robert Gordon Menzies (3September 1939).• Almost a million Australians, both men and women, servedin the Second World War. They fought in campaigns againstGermany and Italy in Europe, the Mediterranean and NorthAfrica, also against Japan in south-east Asia and other partsof the Pacific.
Australia at war 3 September 1939 Libya and the Siege of Tobruk 1941 Greece and Crete April-May 1941 Syria and Lebanon June 1941 Malaya December 1941 to Moresby May 1942 Australia under attack 1940-1945 Coral Sea, Kokoda,Milne Bay May-Sept 1942 El-Alamein Oct-Nov 1942 The Australian Homefront 1939-1945 The Coastwatchers 1941-1945 Australian Prisoners at War1940-1945 Little-known Operations 1939-1945 Papua 1942-1943 The Japanese RetreatMarch 1943-Jan 1944 War at Sea 1939-1945 Air War Europe 1939-1945 Last Battles: Bougainville, Borneo,New Britain, New Guinea 1944-1945 Victory: 8 May 1945/15 August 1945
• As Japan bombing of Pearl Harbour and attacks on the other Pacificislands, Australia tried to avoid war with Japan through diplomacy butit against Britain’s wishes. Therefore, Australia had no option but toseek alliance with the United States of America.• This decision was timely because after the fall of Singapore Japan beganthe air raids on Northern Australia bombing Darwin and Broome andused submarines to attack Sidney Harbour.• Australia traditional family life changed dramatically when a largenumbers of females involved in civilian and military occupations.• Although Australians did not undervalue the military importance of theAmerican, there were tensions developed between them as thousands ofyoung women fell into short affairs or marriages with American theyhardly knew.
• Australians also disliked Americans received a higher salary than them.Australian felt that their war efforts were not as well-known asAmerican for their behaviour.• The social conflict between Australians and Americans developed intoviolent brawls, such as the ‘Battle of Brisbane’ (November 1942).However, both countries had to unite in their fight against Japan.• In 1942 Australia adopted the statue of Westminster that gave thecountry greater control of its foreign policy. This Act is a major turningpoint in British and Australian relations.• The military campaign in Papua and New Guinea, the battle along theKokoda Track that lost many young conscripts has become a nationallegend.
• 8 000 Australian soldiers and civilians who became Japanese prisoners-of –war (POWs) died at the hands of Japanese. The World War II havehad the largest impact on society in Australia history.• Post-World War II Australia reinforced its defence ties with Britain andThe United States of America from the spread of communism and theCold War.• The ANZUS Treaty was formed in 1951 when united Australia, NewZealand, and the United States joined to establish security in the Asia-Pacific to promote pro-Western, non-communist countries in theregion.• Australian’s willingness to cooperate that allowed Britain to carry outatomic tests in remote region in this country devastated so manyAboriginal groups and Australian servicemen.
• Australia troops have also been sent to British and American operations to fightJapanese such as in Malayan, Indonesia, Vietnam, the Gulf Crisis, Afghanistanand Iraq.• Australia’s defence ties also involve security concerns to drug trafficking,international crime, illegal immigration, environmental issues and terrorism.• Anzac Day has been a significant yearly event in Australia to commemorateheroes who were killed in wars (the Battle of Gallipoli) Since 25 April 1916.• The spirit of the ANZACs became a part of the Australian ethos as symbolicrituals of historical reflection, nationalistic sentiments, male and communitybonding, and universal ideals of love and not war.• All cites have a central Anzac park and in almost every Australian town arefound war memorials as a reminder of their loved ones who died in war , warefforts, and the impact wars have had on Australian society.