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Apr 22, 2010

The PR campaigns driving Anzac Day

For many Anzac Day is a solemn day of remembrance, but much of what Australians believe about it have been products more of recent PR and propaganda than of memory, writes Noel Turnbull.


In Alan Bennett’s play The History Boys one of the characters says: “The best way to forget something is to commemorate it.” Nothing exemplifies that more than the way that Anzac Day commemoration has resulted in Australians either forgetting what they knew about Gallipoli, or never learning the truth.

For many returned servicemen and women and their families Anzac Day is a solemn day of remembrance, but much of what Australians believe about it, and what images and ideas it inspires, have been products more of recent PR and propaganda than of memory.

Alec Campbell, socialist, trade unionist, republican and the last Australian who served at Gallipoli, was almost deified by John Howard. Brendan Nelson wanted all Australian schools to teach “values” through the prism of  John Simpson Kirkpatrick, (the famous Simpson and his donkey) who, it is generally agreed, was a drinker and a brawler; jumped ship and came to Australia as an illegal immigrant; was a bit of a slacker at times and probably acquired the donkey as a way of avoiding working with anyone else; was in favour of a revolution to “clear out millionaires and dukes”; and, had enlisted so that he could get back to his family in Britain.

These realities were conveniently omitted from the Howard-Nelson version of history, although it is tempting to think school kids would be better off learning about the Campbell and Kirkpatrick values than some other ones stuffed down their throats.

The basic facts about Gallipoli are also well-known, but seemingly feature little in either Anzac iconography or political rhetoric. For a start Australia suffered 8709 casualties at Gallipoli (Department of Veterans Affairs Anzac website) compared with 86,692 Turks, 21,255 Britains and 9798 French.

There were also 1358 Indians and  49 Newfoundland casualties. Gallipoli has been a battleground for millennia and its modern significance is probably mainly due to Kemal Ataturk’s role there, and subsequently in modern Turkey. Yet Australians have been persuaded to believe that its significance is primarily Australian through a process that framed the event as a founding national event; promoted it as a unique opportunity to express Australian patriotism; and then commercialised it through tourism and other activities.

The legend was shaped from the very beginning by British journalist Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett;  Australian war historian C.E.W. Bean; Sir Keith Murdoch; and C.J.Dennis in The Sentimental Bloke.

But why it has became newly iconic after being in long-term decline from the 1960s is a puzzle. Ken Inglis’ view of Anzac as providing something sacred for a secular society is persuasive. Inge Clendinnen is right to remind us of the significance of his work just as Henry Reynolds and Marilyn Lake are right to ask why we celebrate Anzac Day and not our pioneering role in unionism, social welfare and women’s suffrage.

But the full picture is impossible to grasp without considering the expensive and well-planned PR programs designed to help us remember Anzac Day in a particular way.

The long-term decline was reversed from the 1990s, first, by Bob Hawke at the Anzac Day 75th  anniversary. It was then consolidated with the Australian Remembers campaign in 1994-95 to mark the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II. And it culminated in the Howard government’s deification of the digger and militarism.

While the speeches, events and commemorations were the public face of a memorial campaign, behind them all were PR and marketing campaigns. The Australia Remembers campaign was run by the minister for veterans affairs, Con Sciacca, his chief-of-staff Greg Rudd, John Engledow, deputy head of an Australia Remembers Taskforce and Peter Thomas as a roving ambassador.

Peter Thomas, a former army officer, and an experienced PR practitioner who had headed Telstra PR, said in a case study summary of the campaign that it was “possibly the last opportunity for many veterans, servicemen and servicewomen to be honoured. These people, and those who served but are no longer with us, have a special place in the history of Australia. They are an enduring beacon for us all”.

And many of us who worked on the campaign sincerely believed that. Yet there is little doubt that there was also political calculation involved — and it was fairly easy for some of us to believe in the Australia Remembers and the Labor cause at the same time.

Traditionally the RSL leadership (although many ordinary diggers were on the left) were strong supporters of Empire, Crown, conservatism and strongly anti-Labor. Australia Remembers gave the ALP the opportunity to re-position itself as the patriotic party — which it had always been but which conservatives had managed to frame as otherwise.

Later state ALPs adopted similar tactics. Victorian ALP veterans affairs adviser and Vietnam vet John Phillips played a brilliant role in building bridges with ex-service people and the RSL, working to get a better deal for veterans and using skilful commemorative tactics to re-position the Bracks and Brumby governments among veterans.

Australia Remembers used the full gamut of PR activities — particularly at grassroots level. Grants were made to local communities to conduct events including community events around local Anzac Day services that, instead of the main Anzac Day March, became (and continue to be) the focal point of Anzac Day services around the country.

Forty years ago there were fewer and fewer marchers and fewer and fewer onlookers. After the Australia Remembers campaign there were thousands of small community events involving hundreds of thousands of people across Australia.

Many of the campaign elements — re-enactments, commercial tie-ups, events — were standard PR techniques that tapped into the patriotism that had been kindled as part of the 1988 Bicentennial celebrations; the 75th Anzac Day anniversary; and gave local people an opportunity to develop forms of commemoration distinctive to their community.

They also, unfortunately, produced a platform for the new nationalism; distrust of foreigners and refugees; and, the military adventurism of the Howard government.

All the techniques used in the US to promote war — farewells for troops; the concept that criticising the wars was wrong because it was disloyal to “our troops”; symbolic visits to the troops in combat zones — were also used by the Howard government. The Australian military now even employs brand managers just like fast-food companies.

However, the US efforts are far more comprehensive simply because the US military employs more PR people than any other organisation in the world.

As long as wars go on, politicians continue to think of new ways to commemorate them, new PR gestures, and new ways to “honour” those who served. People I served with in Vietnam are still fighting to get better health and pension entitlements, but we have now been awarded more medals in the past 10 years than we were awarded for serving in the first place.

With every one of these additional postwar decorations we were all given the opportunity of having presented them by our local MP or getting them through the post. Most chose Australia Post.

Ritual declaration of interest: My former firm provided a contractor (at cost) to Australia Remembers, I worked on the campaign as a volunteer, I am a returned serviceman but, as a good republican, am more likely to celebrate Oliver Cromwell’s birthday on April 25 than Anzac Day.


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128 thoughts on “The PR campaigns driving Anzac Day

  1. Holden Back

    Thankyou for putting some meat on the bones of my suspicions. All of this activity to shore up the tradition will of course be conveniently unmentioned in any discussion of its centrality in Australian life. You unfairly mentioned facts.

  2. Victoria Campbell

    Any reason for leaving out the other half of ANZAC in this story? More than 2700 New Zealanders were killed in this useless battle. Interesting the use of the word ‘celebrate’ in the eighth paragraph but unfortunately it’s the operative word for ANZAC nowadays – school kids with Australian flags on their cheeks saying ‘Happy ANZAC Day’ to the TV cameras. Puke.

  3. Skepticus Autartikus

    Heh. They got nowhere with the bourgeois phoneys Reynolds, Lake, and the other superannuated Commie “historians” so they’d try another tack. At last this bloke has a bit more personal credibility. But still as clueless about social dynamics. Hint, hint. The government is the follower on this one, not the leader. 😉

  4. Graeme Orr

    More French died at Gallipoli?? I had no idea. Thanks for this Noel; it is reminds me of my uncles, WWII volunteers all, who all rejected the one-size-fits-all RSL approach to commemoration.

    Remembrance day – with its accent on the lot of soldiers in all wars, everywhere, has a meaning that needs no mythologising, and no narrative of putting one battle above all others.

    Jingo-heads like ‘Skepticus’ can keep their myths of ‘diggerism’. Militarisation of Australian history has political purposes, as it has everywhere. It’s especially dodgy in Australia, which is the only continent to never face a real war on home soil.

  5. Skepticus Autartikus

    Graeme, the only politicking here is – as usual – the ageing marxist academics and their interminable culture wars. Nobody’s listening anymore. They lost. Give it a rest.

  6. AJK

    Do you really think the ex Service community give a hoot what pollies, journos and academics have to say about the way we remember our losses, victories and deceased friends?
    The only opinions that matter are the ones Veterans share among themselves.
    If you are not part of that group, why bother to make you understand, because the chances to really listen are well and truly past. AJK

  7. Graeme Orr

    Skepticus, you are anything but skeptical. Spend some time with school kids for instance and you’ll see that genuine interest in Anzac day lies only with an minority.

    I’m not interested in political correctness, left wing or right wing. Imagine if State governments and education departments pumped up say Labour Day (winning the 8 hour day was no less an ‘Australian’ achievement as fighting overseas). Or the Queens birthday. We’d ask questions.

  8. davidk

    Good piece.

  9. adrian

    Excellent article which deserves a wider audience.

  10. Daniel

    One day SkeptAutart will actually construct an argument and present it with words. I look forward to that day.

  11. Skepticus Autartikus

    Graeme if you cannot see that the writer of this article was a stooge for Keating’s culture wars, who is now pissed off that all that money Keating spent on trying to have Kakoda replace Gallipoli was wasted, then you are just another sucker.

  12. Jahm Mitt

    I actually do not like the RSL nor the people who constitute it’s membership. I do not like the fact that the excuse that they and the guillable public at large use, of “just cause I was in a war” somehow makes them as individuals – as gold plated standards for anything.

    I have met so many of them who are absolute cretins as people, who take everything they can get, think of no one but themselves and who back stab everyone they can in the process, while they hang out in their stinking surrepticious cliques.

    They moan, “Seeing the young people of today – I don’t think they were worth fighting for” -and yet lets look at who failed to set the example?

    And yet – trot out the old mantra of, “Sinna war mate”, and they they get stuck up on an instant pillar of sacred cow’dness.

    The people of the RSL did not lead the charge against Howard and Abbot and Co., for rigging another fake, tax payer funded, corporate war for oil – and give him and his ministers a sound thrashing with their walking sticks – and to run them out of parliament.

    They did nothing – except play lick arse and kiss arse in the clubby etiquette of the “preprogrammed social norms”.

    As far as being “Great Saviours of the Empire” – let us not forget – while they like the other side, were dumb enough to be herded like cattle into the troop ships, all of them were and still are too stupid and gutless to say NO, and to stand up against the mind game players of religion and politics.

    And none of them are smart enough to build a peace memorial.

  13. Skepticus Autartikus

    Graeme and Daniel

    I might also remind you that it was precisely court historians like Reynolds, Lake, and the other white middle-class baby-boomer taxpayer-supported commies who contribute chapters to their offensively unscholarly book, who were the ones behind all the Keating era culture war nonsense that since been shown to be myth built on their lies and fabrications.

    Lake’s entire chapter comes from her supposed abilities as a mind-reader and sorceress of blog comments from The Age.

    I mean come on, wake up people. This crowd are money-grubbing intellectual low-lives.

  14. EngineeringReality

    Good article.

    I had began to wonder over the last 5-10 years why Anzac Day and not Remembrance Day (11 Nov) was getting all the limelight and almost rabid attention and a crazed, fanatical following that began to feel false, forced and distastefully nationalistic.

    If you mentioned anything against or questioned Anzac Day you were likely to be attacked with a zeal to be envied by the most enthusiastic Spanish Inquisitor.

    The media has a huge role in shaping those in our society with the most malleable opinions and mood – you know the ones – those who watch programs like ACA and Today Tonight and believe what they are watching is true. A sizable portion of the population is susceptible to being significantly influenced by popular media and advertising – and it is this sector of the population who the PR campaign resonates with the most.

    Don’t get me wrong – I am not discounting the deaths and loss of our servicemen – but the reality of Gallipoli being a military mistake and failure of the British general staff and the senseless sacrifice of the thousands of servicemen on both sides for the sake of diversions is what should be remembered.

    Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it. Those who change history are doomed also.

  15. bakerboy

    Howard used the veterans and the current ADF to further his political influence. It really did get a bit out of hand during his tenure. I am an ex ADF officer with 20 plus years service and I have also worked in the Dept of Veterans’ Affairs. It was a real eye opener. While no one would begrudge fair treatment of vets, some of them are clear rorters of the system. Some have even been sent to jail for defrauding the Commonwelath. I myself discovered a vet who was rorting the system and had his little earner stopped in its tracks.
    Anzac Day is becoming a celebration of jingoism thanks to Howard. We really need to tone it down and spend our resources on helping those vets and their families who REALLY need assistance

  16. Pete WN

    Good information on Simpson & his donkey.

    Comparisons exist with the US deification of Columbus, who lied to spanish investors about ‘rivers of gold’ so as to procure funds for his expedition to the Americas and had to come back with slaves instead; resulting in the brutal genocide of a number of tribes. This guy gets tributes?

    I will remember the veterans and victims of war (both sides), not the myths of “ANZAC Day”.

  17. Mark Drummond

    AJK – Did you read the article? This is a returned serviceman making the point.

    Instead of spending millions on ANZAC Day celebrations how about we spend the money on veterans and helping their families? Now that’d be an honourable way of remembering their service….

  18. Skepticus Autartikus


    Sorry, but the article is about KEATING’s millions trying to manipulate public feeling; not Howard’s.

  19. bakerboy

    Skepticus – Howard took it to an art form.

  20. Skepticus Autartikus


    Ah, the guy who wrote the article is talking about the millions spent on Keating’s culture wars and the author’s OWN complicity in them. Please read.

  21. Michael Rogers

    In times of uncertainty with global markets shifting, it is always wise policy to keep on good terms with the people who have access to the nation’s military arsenal. Commemoration and celebration of real or imagined military traditions and culture is insurance that the ruling class believes they can bank on.

    Labelling the military’s forebears as imperialist dupes engaged in a futile and mismanaged sideshow aimed at propping up Czarist Russia is not the way to go for the privileged classes should they need a soldier to help one day maintain their privilege.

  22. Skepticus Autartikus

    As you clearly either cannot or will not read, the article is about Keating’s 1994/5 year long multi-million dollar campaign to substitute Kakoda for Gallipoli. Called Australia Remembers Keating and his team – including this article’s author – spent the entire year, hundreds of personnel and millions of dollars trying to propagandize WWII over WWI by lying that Australia was only saved from Japanese invasion by Kakoda. Curiously nobody has attacked Keating for his use of bogus history to vilify the Japanese. 😉

    Shills like Lake and Reynolds did very well financially as Keating’s court historians. 😉

  23. bakerboy

    Skepticus – pls have a Bex and a lie down. Yes, Keating, quite rightly, pointed out that Gallipoli had nothing about defending Australia but Kokoda did (albeit in a fairly small way). Remember, Keating arranged for the repatriation and burial of our ‘Unknown Soldier’ in 1993, where a WW1 soldier’s body was officially buried at the War Memorial in Canberra. BTW, I went to that funeral and placed a red rose on the coffin before it was sealed in the floor of the memorial. Sure, Keating wanted to give more prominence to WW2 but you can’t hold him responsible for the ongoing culture wars between various history academics who can never agree on anything.

  24. Skepticus Autartikus


    Then please tell those above you have no problem with governments funding Anzac Day celebrations!

  25. Cripes...

    Ahoy, embittered republican academics and fellow left wing travellers. Once again, with annual regularity, we see your shallow pre-Anzac Day rhetoric with the same old hackneyed clichés and serial denigration of past Australian valour.

    Before the Gallipoli landings, the new nations of Australia and New Zealand were almost unknown to the world. The fact is, however, the international debut of both countries was quickly and adroitly accomplished by the intrepid spirit, stoic endurance and cheerful fortitude of Anzac Diggers.

    Their reputation for ingenuity, flexibility and droll humour in the face of adversity gave strength to future generations caught in similar harrowing circumstances. I’m thinking of Tobruk, El Alamein, Kokoda, Burma Railway, Kapyong, Long Tan and many, many other crises.

    Today’s service personnel are carrying forward the traditions first forged by Australians who suffered the hardships of Gallipoli. Those same qualities are now enhancing the honour and reputation of our modern Diggers in current theatres of conflict.

    Lest We Forget.

  26. Daniel

    “Ahoy, embittered republican academics and fellow left wing travellers. Once again, with annual regularity, we see your shallow pre-Anzac Day rhetoric with the same old hackneyed clichés and serial denigration of past Australian valour.”


    Also thanks for expanding your point a little more, Skepticus. It actually makes sense now.

  27. Skepticus Autartikus

    Well Daniel thank you. I am sorry if I have appeared obtuse thus far, but it was never my intention. Perhaps folks really are blind to just how conned they are by the likes of Reynolds and Lake. And just how rich the blood suckers are. 😉

  28. alan tidwell

    I run the Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. We commemorate the ANZAC tradition annually with an address (never actually falling on ANZAC day due to speaker availability). While we have tapped into the military side of the tradition, we have also tried to broaden the commemoration to speak about the ANZAC spirit of comradeship, perseverance, and bravery can be applied in other walks of life. So, while Shaune Lakin, formerly of the Australian War Memorial, did do an excellent lecture on photographic history of the landing at Gallipoli, we’ve also had former NZ PM Helen Clark relate the ANZAC spirit to fighting world poverty. Our other speakers have been a mix of military and others including David Malouf, Tom Keneally, Peter Weir, Peter Cosgrove, Alexander Downer, and Jim Bolger from NZ. Personally, I very much want Barry Humphries to do the next one, because he has a familial connection to Gallipoli, but I think the event would also provide an opportunity for political and social commentary.

    Anyway, thanks for the article.

  29. Skepticus Autartikus


    You are tapping into precisely the same psycho-historical threads the Australians do. It is only the Lake/Mckenna/Reynolds gold-diggers who so unethically propagandize this lie that we do it as some genuflection to “militarism.” FFS, as everybody who goes to services, and contributes to commemorations around the day, the emphasis is the exact opposite of militaristic celebration.

    They should be ashamed of themselves for trying to propagandize otherwise.

  30. Cripes...

    Keating’s cowards are still trying to denigrate customs held dear, by the last four generations of Australians, to simply show gratitude on Anzac Day for suffering and sacrifice made for them.

  31. SBH

    hey skep, are you a returned soldier or just spuiking for someone else?

  32. alan tidwell


    I don’t have a dog in this fight. We mark ANZAC the tradition and move on. We have other fish to fry. Personally, I don’t know Henry Reynolds, but certainly think he’s a top notch scholar. As for Marilyn, I’ve met her a few times and found her very cordial and thoughtful. I’ll leave the fight to others.

  33. Elan


    Septicarse: God! you do go on don’t you?

    ” People I served with in Vietnam are still fighting to get better health and pension entitlements, but we have now been awarded more medals in the past 10 years than we were awarded for serving in the first place.”

    This really cracked me up Noel! Thanks for the belly laugh!

    (Says it all, doesn’t it?)

  34. Davo

    Cripes: you know we lost at Gallipoli? That troops were sent over, not by British order, but by Australian failures of leadership? That troops were evacuated under cover of night, and that the whole shebang landed at the wrong beach?

  35. Davo

    and that should be ‘over the top, not … ‘not ‘over, not’

  36. noel turnbull

    My apologies for leaving out the NZ figures. An error which was not deliberate but sloppy nevertheless. Haven’t checked for a while but think the NZ figures are higher on a per capita basis than the Australian – as the Australian are when compared with Britain, France and the Indian casualties. Newfoundland casualties in the entire war could be, I suspect, higher on a per capita basis than any other country. As for Skeptikus – has he served overseas? His heroic ferocity would have been most useful in many situations.

    Noel Turnbull

  37. campers

    What really gets to me the most about this weird timewarp we pass through into Victorian-Edwardian Britain every April is the shameless way Australian schoolkids are being sucked into it all – with a lot of curriculum help from the historical wing of the AWM, DVA and ADF.

    I’m sorry, but I find it immensely distressing to see nine-year-olds on the news wearing rows of military medals over their school uniforms and parroting platitudes about how ‘we wouldn’t be here’ without the sacrifice of the Anzacs. (Like, where else would we be exactly – a Japanese salt mine?)

    It’s truly reprehensible to be feeding young minds with this kind of anachronistic – and ultimately dangerous – mythology. You would think we were raising them to live in a pukka sahb imperial outpost rather than a 21st century liberal democracy.

  38. SBH

    Cripes, I’m with you ANZAC day is a time to look back over our whole history and remember the sacrifice of past conflicts. Its past time to commemorate the great unrecognised Australian military actions, you know where we shot all those Aborigines?

  39. Cripes...

    Time to get with the program, fellas; don’t want the kids to suss you out. The missus spotted it years ago; that explains those veiled glances of disappointed contempt.

  40. Helix Union

    Hello Professor Turnbull,
    Thanks for your piece. PR has been a big piece of the War Business since Russells reports from the Crimea.

    On ANZAC Day I take some time to reflect on friends and family who have served from Gallipoli to Pozieres, the North Atlantic, Crete, Syria, Kokoda, Siam Railway and Vietnam, to mention a few locales.

    Without getting into the political rights and wrongs of those conflicts and the dubious use of the lives of young men (mostly) to gain political advantage….I find the evolution of ANZAC Emotional Manipulation Inc such as the ‘traditional’ game between Essendon and Collingwood on ANZAC Day to be a tad obscene.

    I have been to Gallipoli…..there but for an accident of birth go any of us…..then we have politicians like Howard who have used glorification of the service and sacrifice of those young men to further their own agenda.

    It seems fairly common that any one who has been at the sharp end of the soldiering business are often emotionally scarred for life and are least likely to be in the glory and bunting aspect of what are very private memories and feelings.

    If our former Dear Leader……Mr. Howard was ever fully investigated he might find himself at the sharp end of an ICC indictment rather than doing the rounds of Wollstonecraft in the patriotic tracksuit, as a prospective ICC VP.

    Finally Professor Turnbull, I concur with your Republican sentiment and even with the idea of the disposal of the next to last Stuart King……with few Paddy’s in the family woodpile makes the idea of celebrating Oliver Cromwell’s birthday with any vigor a tad problematic.

    Best Regards

    Nicholas Union.

  41. Skepticus Autartikus

    Yeah well all you suckers should read up on the millions that go the lies spread by Lake, Reynolds about “terra nullius,” “genocide” etc.

  42. Cripes...

    Many who have posted their shallow comments here, in ignorance, fear or hold in contempt what they don’t understand. During the Great War, the Irish poet, Katharine Tynan wrote evocative verses that convey attitudes, thoughts and feelings unimagined today:

    Flower of Youth

    Lest Heaven be thronged with grey-beards hoary,
    God, who made boys for His delight,
    Stoops in a day of grief and glory
    And calls them in, in from the night.
    When they come trooping from the war
    Our skies have many a new gold star.
    Heaven’s thronged with gay and careless faces,
    New-waked from dreams of dreadful things,
    They walk in green and pleasant places
    And by the crystal water-springs
    Who dreamt of dying and the slain,
    And the fierce thirst and the strong pain.
    Dear boys! They shall be young for ever.
    The Son of God was once a boy.
    They run and leap by a clear river
    And of their youth they have great joy.
    God who made boys so clean and good
    Smiles with the eyes of fatherhood.
    Now Heaven is by the young invaded;
    Their laughter’s in the House of God.
    Stainless and simple as He made it
    God keeps the heart o’ the boy unflawed.
    The old wise Saints look on and smile,
    They are so young and without guile.
    Oh, if the sonless mothers weeping,
    And widowed girls could look inside
    The glory that hath them in keeping
    Who went to the Great War and died,
    They would rise and put their mourning off,
    And say: “Thank God, he has enough!”

  43. Helix Union

    Regarding the glorification of militarism as practiced by John Howard.

    I had to get in for another chop……when it comes to JWH’s political love child Tony Abbott.

    Seemingly unconnected recent policy thought bubbles…….

    Oh we can send more troops to Afghanistan if the USA asks us.

    No dole for people under 30.

    …….now join those dots……..if the young people don’t want to go and slug it out in the mines in WA……….where can they get a job, b/c there is no dole?

    The ADF…the military.

    A bit of Fremantle AFL coach Mark Harvey’s solution……bit of discipline…..stand up straight there boy!

    …….I challenge Mr. Harvey to put his own children in the firing line, or keep his mouth shut about matters of which he has little understanding.

    A GAME of football is not a battle…..it is a GAME that goes for two hours……where a player may sustain an injury without such being too serious (with apologies to Neil Sachse)…….there is a hot shower and every one goes home. Footballers are brave……that is not in question…but it aint a war.

    In a real battle……maiming, brutalisation of a human spirit for life, mutilation, death
    ……to name but a few of the pleasures of combat. And it is yet to be presented true to life and death on celluloid…..unless one has been in it…..one has absolutely no idea.

    Many of ‘the grunts’ in the US military….the chaps at the sharp end….generally come from the lower rungs of the socio-economic ladder of opportunity (sorry Mr. Latham), a slightly more subtle form of conscription. Keeps the sons of the proper people who are at university or within a corporate structure out of harms way.

    If Rudd and his ilk think Abbott is making policy on the run……think again.

    More Red Poppies as the Flower of Australian Youth?

    Nicholas Union.

  44. Holden Back

    So Skepticus you’re simply saying this is a competition over manufactured claims of authenticity for particular public ritual? Which doesn’t have much to do with personal and family needs to remember privately?

  45. campers

    To Cripes and Skepticus et al … If you believe that those who criticise the annual mawkish PR extravaganza that Anzac has become do so simply out of ignorance, then try reading a bit about the real truth of Australians’ reaction to WWI.

    The war was so deeply unpopular among the Australian population that anti-war and anti-conscription rallies in Melbourne and Sydney drew up to 100,000 people – out of a population of only 3 million. The Hughes government became so desperate about declining enlistment and public anger towards the war that it passed the most draconian censorship act of any Allied nation at the time – or since. The act saw anti-conscription and anti-war gatherings banned, protestors jailed and deported, houses searched for anti-war material (including songs like ‘I didn’t raise my son to be a soldier), and anti-war speakers pulled from platforms and beaten. Not one, but two, conscription referendums were defeated in 1916 and 1917, saving the lives of at least another 50,000 young Australian men who would have been sent to the killing fields of Europe had the Yes vote won.

    Of course, all of this has been suppressed from the Australian narrative and from virtually every Australian history syllabus – and THAT is the real lie of our Anzac history.

  46. Cripes...

    CAMPERS and others,

    If you had bothered to check your sources, you’d know that the primary argument for the NO vote, strongly supported by the troops overseas, was the proposition that men who don’t join the fight voluntarily, may be less reliable on the front line.

    That argument produced the successful NO vote.

  47. SBH

    Oh Cripes that’s crap, a large part of the no vote was Irish Australians not wanting to fight for the English empire.

  48. westral

    I see Anzac Day as the day where a lot of people who never did anything or Australia glory in the exploits of others. It’s like the “I’ve been to Anzac Cove for the service” brigade. Very easy to do when no-one is firing at you.

  49. scottyea

    “People I served with in Vietnam are still fighting to get better health and pension entitlements, but we have now been awarded more medals in the past 10 years than we were awarded for serving in the first place.”
    Politicians are charlatans and thieves. full stop.

  50. napoleon dynamite

    I think this is an interesting article, one of the better ones from Crikey. I agree with the pretense of the article, but I love the role that our ANZAC tradition plays in contemporary Australia.

    However, I’d like to see an article that is directed at the cowards that chucked red paint, urine and spat at returning Vietnam solidiers during the 70’s. One of our greatest national shames, in my humble opinion.

    These people should be named and shamed in the same way that paedophiles are….

  51. Cripes...


    I see from your comment to me that you haven’t checked historical sources before voicing an opinion.

    During the public debates that preceded the conscription referendums, a noisy participant was an outspoken rhetorician and religious conservative from Ireland, Daniel Mannix, then current Roman Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne. He vociferously preached that as the conflict was a European trade war, it was wrong to conscript men to fight for such a cause.

    Although respected by most who shared his Roman Catholicism, many other Australians considered Mannix an incendiary traitor whose arrogant belligerence and divisive influence was to set Catholic and Protestant relations back decades.

    That Mannix was an Irishman, didn’t influence many of Irish birth in Australia to adopt all his wider beliefs about the war. The recorded facts indicate that the relatively small minority of those in Australia who were born in Ireland, did support participation in the Great War, as did most people of the British Empire.

  52. Daniel

    “He vociferously preached that as the conflict was a European trade war”

    Basically true.

  53. campers

    ”The recorded facts indicate that the relatively small minority of those in Australia who were born in Ireland, did support participation in the Great War, as did most people of the British Empire.’

    I’d love to know where those ‘recorded’ facts are kept – the AWM museum perhaps? Or the history wing of the DVA or ADF?

    C’mon now, Cripes, Australian anti-war and anti-conscription records from WWI were censored and destroyed, and their writers and speakers officially persecuted, with such draconian force that the true story of Australia’s real attitudes to WWI can never be properly told. However, the fact that both conscription referendums were defeated is proof that support for the war was far less than we’ve been led to believe.

    Also, constitutionally, Hughes could have introduced conscription without any referendum at all. The reason he had to hold them was because he would have faced a full scale revolt from the ALP, the unions and his own government if he had dared to push conscription through without the people’s consent.

    Another major anti-war player was the Women’s Peace Army – a coalition of several women’s organisations that wielded a great deal of influence over the general conscription debate – similar to the Save Our Sons movement during the Vietnam War.

    Archbishop Mannix did play an important role in all of this – but by far the most persuasive argument in both the anti-war and anti-conscription campaigns was the dubious morality of coercing young Australian men into a war with nations on the other side of the world that Australia’s had no quarrel with. In that respect, nothing has changed.

  54. Venise Alstergren

    It is criminal to hear the cries that Australian soldiers die for us.

    It is just no so. In WWI they died to support England. In WWII they died for England, and belatedly they died for Oz in fighting the Japanese. In Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan it was all to support the United States.

    Paid PR types like CRIPES are fighting a rear-guard action to sustain the Hallowed Digger, facing Impossible Odds routine.

    People like him long for the past when Australians were even less educated than they are today. Mercifully, it is doubtful the world will ever again tolerate another world war, we shall be spared WWIII.

    The old diggers are just fading away. Yes, the old guard loves to quote the numbers of children and young adults who attend the ANZAC day marches. What else are they going to do on a Saturday before going to sport?

    By the time the last Digger has fallen off his perch Oz may have discovered we are a country in our own right, not a surrogate child of ‘Mother’ England or a second-hand piece of American chewing gum.

    Australian history is not just made up of places like the Somme, Ypres, Milne Bay, Kokoda. We have a youthful history of our own that future students should be aware of. Our very own history and not some other nation’s disastrous mistakes.

    Why the push to make ANZAC day our National Day? Why should we celebrate the death of an empire, English or American?

    Other countries lost far more troops thanks to Churchill’s vainglorious mistakes than did we. Also, celebrating death is a pretty tawdry foundation for a national day.

    CRIPES: you can reiterate and you want that we are remembering men who died for Oz. But you know, and I know they died for foreign countries. I fail to see anything glorious about that.

    Also, CRIPES, you are showing all the signs of Colonel Blimpism. Flinging adjectives around with the same lack of care as a blind field-gunner trying to find the tank in front of him

  55. SBH

    And based on accounts at the time Cripes the ‘many others’ were largely protestants. Hughes stokes those sectarian fires and passed draconian legislation to stymie debate and anti-consciptionist polemic. Your characterisation does not recognise the broad coalition othat formed behind the anti-conscription votes. you want to remove the beam from your own eye first cobber.

    Like Venise, I’ll rejoice the day no one marches again. It will mean we’ve sent no one to war for a lifetime.

  56. Sausage Maker

    Why do people get sucked into talking about the partisan and inflammatory comments by people like CRIPES and Skepticus Autartikus? Its like most of you only discovered internet forums 6 weeks ago. This has being going on for … however old Usenet is.

    Don’t fall into their trap of responding to their outrageous comments.

    When I was a young child I was taught at school that Anzac was about the soldiers who had died while fighting in the Australian military. It was also about honouring Australian soldiers who server but the emphasis was those who died. As time has gone on its more about the glorification of those at Gallipoli, as if no other battle where Australians served mattered.

    For me Anzac is not the flag, patriotism, the so called “Anzac spirit” or even Australia. Its purely remember those who died in war. It doesn’t matter if it was a just war or not.

  57. Elan

    “In WWI they died to support England. In WWII they died for England,……”

    Not true.

    That actually is an insult to Australia Venise, not ‘England’ .

    World War 1-11 were precisely that. World wars. The suggestion that Allies like Australia would not support Great Britain (a difference) is ludicrous.

    I have WAY more trouble with us or the UK for that matter, involving itself in ‘private’ wars for gain. The Allies fought against Nazism. These two stoushes were literally for a ‘free world’.

    Not a perfect one I know, but that was the aim.

    Crucially the loss of Australian lives were for the freedom of Australia, and the world,-they did NOT fight for their ‘British masters’.

    They fought with GB and with her Allies.

    (And my Pa respected Australian military men to the bloody hilt).

  58. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: We must be reading from different song sheets.

    How did Australia fighting for England help Australia?

    You may not see this point. Do you not believe we fought for America?

    The only time Australians fought for their real mother country was in the Pacific and the countries north of Australia.

    What you father thought is irrelevant to the point I am trying to make.

    Can you not see this futile celebration of war is just another form of the outdated colonial mentality? You are not a stupid person, of course you understand.

    Good night


  59. Cripes...


    I’m not just picking on you, this advice is also is for the other uninformed commentators on this topic:

    You will have some credibility if you read a little basic history before you venture an opinion. You won’t need bombast to make your point if the facts support your argument.

  60. Elan

    “How did Australia fighting for England help Australia?”

    Venal, you are getting a little tedious.

    Now: READ what I said, and I’ll discuss it further.

    And boy! Do I want to discuss it further!!

    “Can you not see this futile celebration of war is just another form of the outdated colonial mentality? ….”

    ‘Celebration’ of war??? WHAT!?! You really need your sleep don’t you??

    And do not make another remark about my father.

    We will talk tomorrow.

  61. SBH

    Good advice Cripes go have a read and develop a broader view about the affect irish nationalism had on the debate. I don’t say the issues you’ve raised didn’t happen but they had less significance than you make out. And don’t go assuming people are ill-informed because they disagree with you or you’ll look like a bonehead.

    Interesting point, one incendary Irish traitor that was locked up for opposing conscription (for reasons completely untramelled Skep or cripes contributions – he favoured peace over war) was John Curtin. This traitor refused repeated demands of the colonial masters to send troops to Burma to defend the empire and recalled troops from Europe to defend Australia. Bloody como.

  62. Cripes...


    Referring to your last comment, if you don’t want to “look like a bonehead” (your words), best follow your own advice and develop an unbiased historical perspective.

    For your information: John Joseph Ambrose Curtin was born in Creswick, Victoria, on the 8th of January, 1885.

    As Prime Minister, John Curtin strongly supported compulsory conscription, extending legislation that sent military forces to fight thousands of kilometres from Australia.

    “I ask every Australian, man and woman, to go about their allotted task with full vigour and courage… We shall hold this country and keep it as a citadel for the British speaking race and as a place where civilization will persist”.

  63. SBH

    Cripes, a little bit of learning is a dangerous thing.

    Yeah (types with tired resignation at the dull dull stupidity and pedantic rigidty of some people) I know he was born in Creswick but like me who was also born in Australia, he had a deep cultural and emotional association and identification with the land of his fathers. You’ve got a very narrow view and You reject any attempt to broaden it. That malaise affects a lot of the boneheaded support for our annual celebration of the death cult of ANZAC.

  64. Elan

    I read a letter recently from an elderly man, that says it all in my opinion.

    He wrote that many years ago, such a day was acknowledged to highlight the futility of war. To make sure that what happened would never happen again. He said that todays ANZAC day glorifies– (I will NOT use the work celebration- my FiL is disgusted by any suggestion that he ‘celebrates’ this day)–the nationalistic fervour of war. He believes that it is xenophobic in nature, and that that is deliberately driven by Government/s.

    I agree.

    And I do not see that as conflicting with anything I’ve said.

  65. Cripes...


    Yes, it’s that “deep cultural and emotional association and identification” (your words) with the old country that has given multiculturalism it’s negative reputation, facilitating foreign nationalist passions and importing deep cultural, racial and religious divisions that are being forced into a widening sector of Australian society.

    Well, SBH, it’s not just that folk are disturbed and frightened by the daily incidents of ethnic gang violence in capital cities. Serbian and Croatian bloodshed and riots at recent tennis and soccer events are but a minor example of the negative side of the “deep cultural and emotional association and identification” so dear to you. It’s a failure of government immigration policies which do not first ensure that all those encouraged to emigrate are likely to embrace and absorb the essential new values needed to successfully join modern Australian society.

    If people choose to migrate for the opportunities of a new life, they must leave the baggage of the old life behind them and step forward towards the new way.

  66. Leo Braun

    “Ahoy, embittered republican academics and fellow left wing travellers. Once again, with annual regularity, we see your shallow pre-Anzac Day rhetoric with the same old hackneyed clichés and serial denigration of past Australian valour”!

    • Avowed passionately Cripes who evidently missed an opportunity to credit the Anzacs with the ultimately carved zionist enclave in Palestine (signifying birth of a nation). Nevermind the expendable lives loss at Gallipoli as Britain, France, Russia, Italy and Greece conspired jointly with Australia and New Zealand in 1915 to pursue elders of zion cabal … http://blogs.crikey.com.au/croakey/2009/09/24/for-another-view-on-prostate-cancer-screening/#comment-830

    Well, manifestly there are none so blind as those who refuse to see the reality. Pertaining to the brainwashed category, who know not what they are unable to know, yet incessantly toying at collecting items of the ignorant intellect. Ever expanding the darkness of their cave!

    No wonder for a dismal failure to catch a sight of the common denominator treachery in the Ghetto Australis. Noted for casualties zionist era of universal deceit. Courtesy of the jellyback spiteful pollies flair to corral public opinion. Even duped casteless Jews, driven always into unthinking conformity for a sole purpose to deflect focus from the actual evildoers totalitarian ideology consequences … http://blogs.crikey.com.au/croakey/2009/12/03/what-rights-do-cancer-patients-have/#comment-1615

    So how about to have a glimpse at the contours zionist seat of power? Prominent of the Senate and Legislative Assembly benches array, resembling Ü shaped silhouette. Moulded into significant menorah image (with a shamash — House Speaker’s throne placed at the helm). When such a candlestick symbol was quoted as given by God to the children of Israel (no wonder zionist state of Israel in its search for the legitimacy symbol, had chosen precisely such a sacrosanct insignia) … http://ericmatic.free.fr/sitefolder/images/houserepresentative_JPG.jpg

  67. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: I’m so sorry to disappoint you, but at Uni war history was my strongest subject.

    ELAN: Now don’t go haring off in a huff. I said nothing about your father, I merely assumed that as you speak of him in the past tense that he is no longer with you. Also passing on what someone else has said is not germane to what you think.

  68. Venise Alstergren

    LEO BRAUN: I have all the time in the world for Jews, but none whatsoever for Israel. Especially for Israel with Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister.

    The contempt with which Israel treats the Palestinians is equalled only by the contempt with which the Germany of WWII showed towards the Jews.

    That’s all, I don’t wish to comment further.

  69. Elan

    ‘Haring off in a huff’ is not my forté and you know it!

    What you thoughtI was doing, was quoting the Pater making a remark of colonial condescension! You did didn’t you?? Because this ‘fighting for England’ thing is a sensitive point.

    As to what is not germane;-I’lldecide that thanks. I know exactly why I quoted that, and it was not to condescend or to show what a thoroughly good chap the old man was. It was for another reason entirely, and you missed that because you chose not to see it.

    If you take a look at your post of 27-10.55pm. you respondedwith the fighting for ‘England’ thing- again.

    Because it has more impact in the ‘colonial master’ theory, than does saying GB. I said GB, because the Irish/English/Welsh/and Scottish fought.

    England is the target though, so you went straight back to that.

    You then referred to the ‘futile celebration of war’!! Where in the hell did I say that we should celebrate it??

    How can war be celebrated?! WHY are words being put into mouths?

    Because it suits the purpose of the argument!

    Your post made no sense. It still doesn’t, because it was a response to me, yet did not respond to anything I said!

  70. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: Well I did say we were reading from different song sheets!

  71. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: You are sounding dangerously close to One Nation speak, or to League of Rights speak.

    I’m not trying to be nasty, but over the years it has been my experience that the majority of Australians-for all I know it could be a universal thing-who aspire to the greatest patriots are in fact right-wing racists.

    If you wish to retain any credibility on your cheer-squad pro-ANZAC stoush, you should restrain the racist bit.

  72. Elan

    Thanks for the laugh Venise!!

  73. Graeme Orr

    Elan: ‘World War 1-11 were precisely that. World wars. The suggestion that Allies like Australia would not support Great Britain (a difference) is ludicrous.’

    They were world wars precisely because they were founded on imperial power and ambitions (on all sides).

    I’m not trying to be revisionist: Australia had barely developed a foreign policy of its own before some time into WWII, and the majority, mainstream view was to see British blood and interests AS ours (just note how Chifley, post-war, risked his own government and Australian economic recovery to help keep Britain going).

    Even then – resisiting fascism in WWII and (possibly, arguably) Afghanistan – I can’t think of a hot conflict that we’ve been involved in that was both just and in our strategic interest. And those two requirements are pre-reqs for forcing young men to risk it al in the name of ‘war’…

  74. SBH

    Oh sorry cripes, I get it now. you’re just an old fashioned tory r*cist.

  75. Venise Alstergren

    SBH: Is there any way you could petition Crikey to have a different avatar? It’s just that you and ELAN have the same avatar and some times you agree with each other, at other times you are very much against each other. And both of you frequently address me

    This makes it difficult for me as I always seem to be going through my e-mails at top speed. Added to which my typing skills are virtually non-existent, plus my not getting to my computer until 1500hrs, all make it very difficult for me to reply to, and give enough attention to your worthy comments.

    For example it is now 1955hrs and I started at 15000hrs. I’m due to have something to eat. After that I’ll have to continue working until I have at least got through my Crikey e-mails, let alone my non-Crikey ones.

    SBH: Occasionally you get huffy and assume other people are trying to put you down. This is far from being my intention. If you could get Crikey to change either you, or ELAN’S avatar it would ameliorate my work load hugely.

    Thank you for your attention.

  76. Elan

    Graeme Orr:

    “They were world wars precisely because they were founded on imperial power and ambitions (on all sides). “

    I know. But that changes nothing in my view. There was little choice but to go to war.

    The alternative was that one imperial power could have taken complete control of most of the globe,-and that power had a lousy attitude to some colours and creeds!

    Having taken the decision to go to war-what were Commonwealth (a touchy subject, but one that must be discussed) countries supposed to do?

    At that time, ties to GB were very close. How would it have been if Australia had not joined the allies? She would have stuck out like a sore thumb.

    So she joined the allied forces. For GB?? Really?

    Surely Australia was part of the allied opposition to Nazism? Because she was a Commonwealth country is a factor in supporting GB, but not the factor?

    I do not believe that Oz went to war for GB,- so I phoned FiL about this earlier, and he insists that he and his colleagues went to war to prevent Nazism. He bristled at the perception that it was for Britain, but then again Pop is an avowed Republican!!!

    I concede I know little of Chifley and post-war decisions. I have been in Oz 33 years, and picked up from then.

    As to your last para. it’s where I came in. I do not see the global wars as not being in Australia’s interest. Australia is not immune to global machinations just because it’s tucked down here. It would ultimately have suffered if Germany had won the war.

    Or are you suggesting that Australia would ultimately accept Nazism?

    I have no wish to inflame here,-I am simply asking the question.

  77. Elan

    Venise, how do I get my own avatar?

    Step by step would be handy….!

  78. Cripes...


    You really need to get a life. Please forgive my bluntness, but your daily schedule, as you describe it, prompts me to offer this gratuitous advice. Be less attentive to our Crikey comments. Much of the time most of us are not really that fair dinkum. We’re here for the laughs. The rest of us are just fair dinkum ratbags. Bit sad really.

    Get out there, away from the computer. Be social with real people, face to face. Forget us jaded Crikey (virtual) drongos. Good luck.

  79. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: Don’t be patronising. Also I suggest you start reading FDOTM to see whether or not I have a sense of humour.

    I may have to work at it, but it gives me enormous pleasure to enjoy the comments from FDOTM, and to find inglorious and noxious weeds like you.

    Whatever I say to people like you may not change your thinking, but your replies reveal volumes about the far right lunacy spouted by juveniles such as your self.

    Why do you think I don’t get to the computer until 1500hrs? It’s because I am mixing with people, and hopefully, doing some work.

    Good night pea brain.

  80. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: I’ll do my best.

    There are two ways you could do it.

    1) The avatar you’re using at present was allotted to you by Crikey-they must have a limited number for each image which is how you ended up with the same one as SBH. You could get in touch with them and request a change.

    2) Or draw or produce a photo which will look good even when scaled down in miniature. I guess you’d have to scan it.

    Then you have to get in touch with Gravatar, google it as I’ve forgotten the address. And follow the instructions.

    I drew my Chinese ‘Good Luck’ symbol at 17.5cms square and reduced it down as small as poss then Crikey automatically reduced it to the correct size.

    Or you could just ask the others. Someone with technical smarts will be able to help you.

    Hope that was helpful.



  81. SBH

    I thought a brain scan had determined elan and I should share an avatar

  82. Elan

    Gravatar it is. Piece of cake………………………………….{@@}.

    SBH what do you mean ‘a’ brain scan. Surely we need two?

    Awwwww gawd! I need cocoa!

  83. Cripes...


    Ouch! Really touched a raw nerve there. In response to your comment, I should point out that work is not “getting out”. Well, you’re fortunate to be home from the workplace by 1500hrs. So, you rush home to industriously work at your important Crikey business, hardly slowing for a bite to eat. Most commendable, but really not much of a life. Well, if you won’t go out, let me to recommend you go to bed early to allow time to read a little history. Your Crikey comments indicate some revision is sorely needed. Enjoy!

  84. Elan

    Cripes little poppet, enough already. We all have our little stoushes,-so Brownies Honour, I’m not taking the moral high ground!

    If we’re here for the laughs, then be a good boy and allow that to occur!

    You know; I know, that each of us does what we damn well want to within reason. If that means staying on the Crikey site until one gets bum sores…fine! It’s a personal choice.


  85. SBH

    There’s those who would argue mine wouldn’t show much Elan

    I know Venise, I’m working on it but I know you weren’t having a shot. One thing I have learned is not to get between you and Elan when the blood is up, I just get torched (I think the young people say ‘flamed’ but who can keep up). Elan and my current disagreement is really only about Garrett’s level of responsibility.

    I did try to change my gravatar but in the end got confused.

  86. Elan

    I did take a look at Gravatar. It looks OK to me. Sort of square on the screen with various bits of information…

    I suppose I should contact admin. Not because of sharing an avatar, but because I quite fancy getting my own you-beaut one!

    Two things: Gravatar says that the avatar selected through them is the avatar ‘you take with you to different sites’. I don’t want the thing to follow me around!!

    And: perhaps?? Is a personalised avatar the domain of the paid up only?

    I’m just getting over Justin Be..Beib.. Beiber??, and now I have to cope with this.

    It’s too much.

  87. Venise Alstergren

    SBH: I think you have commented at First Dog On the Moon. I’d be inclined to go back there and ask ‘Can anyone help me with this avatar business?’ This site is a veritable hot bed of technos. Also, they’ll explain it much better than I did.



  88. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: You touched a raw nerve? ROTF and LOL. Obviously you haven’t read me when someone does touch a nerve. Ask SBH or ELAN, our paths have crossed, yet you notice we all talk to each other.

    I’m truly touched by your solicitous concern for my health and my happiness. I don’t know what I’ve done to merit such gallantry. Especially from someone who is so learned about war history, and so eager to inform everyone else.

    Kindness such as yours is a rare, rare thing these days. Truly, you are a modern day gentleman-the sort of man found at the Court of England’s King Arthur. If they ever find whether or not this court existed or not. Avalon or the bush, I guess.

    I’m sweeping you a low curtsy of thanks, Sir Gwain.

  89. Venise Alstergren

    @ELAN @SBH: Look what I’ve just learned at the FDOTM site…






  90. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: Re the avatar, and not wanting it to follow you around.

    It doesn’t follow me overseas, but have found it to surface on one or two Oz sites. Cheers.

  91. Elan

    Makes frantic dash to FDOTM site! >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> //
    (, “)


  92. Elan

    Damn!! My ‘sprinting’ man did not post as I typed it!

  93. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: Hehehehehehe.

    I don’t know if it makes a difference, but I use a Mac and have noticed that Crikey symbols translate with ease to my machine.

    Did you try a ‘:’ plus a ‘)’ this should give you a smiling face= 🙂 For a frowning face ‘:’
    plus ‘(‘ = 🙁

  94. Cripes...


    A little of your own medicine is good for you, so if you can dish it out, you best be able to swallow it. Enjoy!

  95. Elan

    No Venise. My grand-son gave me a small book on all sorts of texting jargon/how to text ‘pictures’ using keyboard symbols etc.,

    He thought it would make me cool!

    I did it very carefully, and it looked good but posted on two different lines!

    Look, I know this is dumb, but how do I get into FDOTM, I can’t find it??

  96. Cripes...

    Extract from the 2010 Anzac Day address, at Gallipoli Peninsula, by Gov. Gen. Quentin Brice, AC:

    ‘Friends, I speak to you this morning as Australia’s first woman Governor-General and Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Forces.

    I speak to you – as I do to our troops, sailors and pilots — all of our people – as a mother and grandmother, and ordinary Australian.

    Anzac Day is all the things I have spoken of, but, at its heart, is love.
    Love of every kind

    Love of nation,
    of service,
    of family.

    The love we give and the love we allow ourselves to receive.’

  97. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: Oh, certainly I’m happy to cop it. It’s just, over the three years I’ve been here, I’m used to copping it from people of a certain intellectual standard.

    A standard which you have yet to arrive at. 😉 😕 🙁

  98. Venise Alstergren

    ELAN: Go to the top of this page. At the top there is a large ‘Crikey’ sign in the top centre of the page.

    Below this there is a black band going across the page. ‘First dog on the Moon’ appears within the band, next to the word s ‘FREE TRIAL”.

    Underneath this appears the heading ‘The PR campaigns driving Anzac Day”

    Let’s know how you go with this.



  99. Venise Alstergren

    MODERATOR: WTF? Whenever someone insults me that’s fine by Crikey. Yet, when I endeavour to give as good as I get. I get moderated.

    It has happened far too often to me. Why is Crikey so unfair to me?

  100. Venise Alstergren

    CRIPES: This is my last comment. I’ve just reread the GG’s comment + the fact that it was quoted by you. Now I am recovering after having thrown up.

  101. Cripes...


    Well, no wonder the esteemed moderator looks at you askance. I recommend you read a good honest autobiography about an Anzac’s story: Bert Facey’s “A Fortunate Life”. Enjoy!

  102. SBH

    Again cripes with the assumptions. OK your a maudlin narrow minded nationalist. What good company your in, Tojo, Wilhelm II, Franco, Mussolini, and so on. People like you, the people pandered to by Bryce’s infantile subjugation to the myth of glorious death are too small minded to think beyond the nationalist veiwpoint. your the kind of people who get young men killed.

  103. SBH

    my apologies, ‘you are’ not ‘your’

  104. Elan

    Nicely put SBH.

    Dealing with Craps is becoming boring.

  105. Leo Braun

    “I have all the time in the world for Jews, but none whatsoever for Israel. Especially for Israel with Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister”! Who celebrated apparently Israeli anniversary of independence in unison with the duped Aussies, glorifying Anzacs attainment: birth of a nation in the Holy Land … http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/04/22/come-in-spinner-the-pr-campaigns-driving-anzac-day/#comment-70182

    Certainly, Aussies faced one of the bloodiest in zionist instigated calamities (embarked-on to attain the foothold in Palestine). Revered ever since as a sacrosanct bloodletting by the blind-leading-blind dill-flock of adherents to the illusory lies. So let’s us draw the line, at last to expose skilled deceivers, proficient to spin bogus history legends. Contrary to the authentic history annals, leading to the orchestrated WWI. Not before zionists embarked on the relentless lobbying the Imperial Russia which insisted not to have a slightest influence with the Turks (Judeo ruling class) who saw Russia as their enemy.

    Still, there was a slim glimpse of hope to convince the recalcitrant Sultan of Turkey in granting an autonomous statelet in Palestine to the zionists in return for taking care of the mounting debts by Turkey to the insatiable bankers. But it soon became quite apparent that all the hopes were unrealistic as Jew born Abdul Hamid knew perfectly well that the initial zionst foothold autonomy to culminate ultimately as an independent entity. At the time when a besieged Sultan was adamant to hold onto his threatened empire.

    So with the zionists without any army, they were gifted nonetheless with the astounding brainpower. Care to recall their plot, utilising Lawrence of Arabia? Set to deceive naive Arabs, who sought independence while fighting courageously against the Turks! In the meantime Chaim Weizmann spun intrigues in London, in unison with Vladimir Jabotinsky in Russia scored Tsarist accord towards the call-up of a volunteer Russian Jew Legion. Ultimately helping the coalition of the willing connivers in taking Palestine by force. As thousands young Russian Jew dissidents (still Russian citizens) in Britain were threatened with deportation by the Home Secretary Herbert Samuel, if they didn’t volunteer to British Army.

    Yet in spite of all the intimidation tactics by Brits, Russian Jew dissidents wouldn’t fight for the Tsar, nor for his sly allies. So much for the zionist perceived Jew legion volunteers idea, turning into embarrassment, if not for the irony strike in making such a scheme into reality. Courtesy of the asinine Turks (actually an inside zionist job) to expel all the Russian Jews from Palestine as enemy aliens. Who joined in turn thousands of young Russian Jew dissidents in Britain.

    Still unwilling to fight for the Tsar, however their indoctrinated zionist ideology led them to follow Yosef Trumpeldor (Jabotinsky’s co thinker) into Zion Mule Corps with Brits at Gallipoli. Later Jabotinsky proudly boasted on how such Mule Corps, courtesy of Petersburg anti-Semites aid, led to the conspired goal’s fruition: “It was that donkey battalion from Alexandria to open doors to the Whitehall offices”!

  106. Elan

    It’s as simple as that!!

  107. Cripes...

    Australians in Russia, 1918-19

    The initial allied involvement in north Russia was a reaction to the withdrawal of Russia from the war following the Bolshevik seizure of power in October, 1917. The cessation of fighting in the west would not only allow the Germans to transfer large numbers of troops to the western front, but the terms of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk also permitted German occupation of large areas of European Russia. Within these territories were huge stocks of military equipment, most of it supplied by the allies. In particular, there were large stocks of such supplies in the northern ports of Murmansk and Archangel, and the allies were concerned that these should not fall into German hands. The expedition ultimately failed to have much impact on the Bolshevik forces, and was evacuated from Murmansk on 12 October, 1919.

    The role of allied soldiers in the intervention was varied, and allied advisers were to be found all over Russia. This was true even of the small Australian contingent. An Australian naval vessel, HMAS Swan, conducted a reconnaissance in the territory of the Don Cossacks in December, 1918.

    All Australians who volunteered were first discharged from the AIF and re-enlisted in the British army as private soldiers for one year. The AIF authorities relinquished control and responsibility for the men while they were part of the relief force, but undertook to repatriate them to Australia after they returned to Britain from Russia.

    The 100-120 Australians volunteers had several reasons for doing so. The pay offered was more than twice that in the AIF. Some had arrived as reinforcements in Britain too late to see any fighting, and wanted to experience active service before returning to Australia. Others were decorated veterans of the campaigns on Gallipoli and the western front, and some at least were motivated by a desire to see Russia, confident that any fighting would be far less arduous than that which they had already experienced. Some of this group undoubtedly did not feel able to ‘settle down’ after their war experience, and may well have seen service in the relief force as a means of further postponing the return to civilian life which many viewed with apprehension.

    Interestingly, there appears to have been no overt political motivation among those who volunteered. All reports indicate that the former AIF men scattered throughout the relief force conducted themselves well, two with great distinction in north Russia, each awarded the Victoria Cross.

  108. Venise Alstergren

    LEO BRAUN: If you are going to quote me please don’t half do it. I wrote…

    “I have all the time in the world for Jews, but none whatsoever for Israel. Especially with Benjamin Netanyahu as Prime Minister.

    “The contempt with which Israel treats the Palestinians is equalled only by the contempt with which the Germany of WWII showed towards the Jews. ”

    By which I mean what a pity that Israel brain-washed the population into justifying the taking of land-illegally-on the amazing statement taken from such a perverted source of history, written by scribes, at the behest of their illiterate customers, spread over at least 5-8 thousand years that Israel had been given to the Jews by God. How stupid do you think God is?

    The above does, of course, refer to the Old Testament.

    There must be many Oz soldiers busily turning in their graves to see how the totally racist and non-democratic state of Israel re-writes history to suit itself.

  109. Leo Braun

    Speaking of the legacy of my people, one mustn’t reach the forgone conclusion before exploring A Great History of a Great People, the most authoritative and comprehensive history of the Jews. Containing astounding eye opener to many! Astute readers to learn apropos, courtesy of the American Jewish Committee revelations. Discovered on page 308: “The position of our co-religionists in Russia grows increasingly deplorable, and recent advices from that country indicate that there is little likelihood of any relief being afforded. The situation is of the gravest. It may be doubted whether Jewry has ever confronted a greater crisis since the overthrow of the Jewish state by the Roman Empire. Not even the horrible persecutions of the times of the Crusades or the expulsion from Spain and Portugal affected so large a mass of our co-religionists”!

    “Russia has since 1890 adopted a deliberate plan to expel or exterminate six millions of its people for no other reason than that they refuse to become members of the Greek Church, but prefer to remain Jews. To carry out this purpose, it has used several methods. Wholesale assassinations, called pogroms, have been employed in order to arouse the religious fanaticism, the greed and the savagery of the needy, the ignorant and the depraved among the Russian people. Horrible as these pogroms are, their effects are trivial compared with those which have followed other methods countenanced by that Government”.

    “The Jewish inhabitants of the congested Pale of Settlement are being harassed by restrictions on their ordinary activities, by practical denial to a serious extent of the right to educate their children, and by having thrust upon them by force, large numbers of their co-religionists who had previously settled in other places within the Empire and had there been usefully employed. By this insidious process, the Russian Government wickedly and artificially creates unnatural conditions that enable it to twist economic and social laws into the service of persecution, and it believes that by their operation the ultimate expulsion or destruction of the Jews of Russia is assured”.

  110. Cripes...

    AIF in Jerusalem

    The renown Australian Mounted Division, during the Third Battle of Gaza, made the famous charge at Beersheba to capture the vital wells before they could be destroyed by the Turks and Germans. This was the last of history’s great cavalry charges. After pursuing the enemy to Jerusalem, units of the Australian Mounted Division became he first mounted troops to enter Jerusalem in December 1917.

    During he following year, it participated in the final breakthrough against the Turks and engaged in a high speed pursuit to Damascus, becoming the first allied troops to enter the city. Between 19 September 1918 and 2 October 1918, the division captured 31,335 prisoners.

  111. Leo Braun

    “Friends, I speak to you this morning as Australia’s first woman Governor-General and
    Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Forces. I speak to you – as I do to our troops, sailors and pilots – all of our people – as a mother and grandmother, and ordinaryAustralian. Anzac Day is all the things I have spoken of, but, at its heart, is love”!

    • Articulated melodramatically GG! What surely didn’t fool me and many other aware citizens. Who footed the bill of $700,000 for 18-day junket tour to 10 African countries by the high profile performer, Ms Quentin Bryce. Essentially exploiting GG position to bewitch African rulers and thus gain support for Australia’s bid to secure a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council. Nevermind the incurred cost to the fleeced taxpayers, whatever it takes to ensure the unchallenged zionist junta conquests over dead bodies.

    Condoned by the jellyback spiteful pollies of the chosen gene-pool, under representative democracy slogans allure. Eager as ever to jump on the gravy-train and above all the Rudd govt facilitated junket tours to the Holy Land. Whilst the usurped citizens in the Ghetto Australis were driven always into unthinking conformity for a sole purpose to deflect focus from the actual evildoers totalitarian ideology consequences! Celebrated annually by the upper echelons of power on the Jewish New Year (Rosh ha Shana). Camouflaged in the smart state by the “River Fire” extravaganza, at the taxpayers expense!

  112. Cripes...


    Please don’t take offence, but the histrionic tone of what you have to say does seem excessively intense. This approach does tend to irritate and alienate. A more relaxed manner of delivery will help get your message across. Thanks.

  113. Venise Alstergren

    LEO BRAUN: the minute you admit that Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians is appalling, the greater the chances of you receiving some replies.

    Surely you don’t want someone as brain-dead as CRIPES as your only friend?

  114. Cripes...


    I am appalled to note the blackmail attempt in a comment to you by VENISE ALSTERGREN who appears to feel that this forum is about making friends.

    If the sad world of VENISE ALSTERGREN revolves around composing comments to post on Crikey, it has apparently led down the crooked path to being a serial offender of the forum moderator.

    LEO BRAUN, forum friends are for the lame or the lost. Say what you must; shock us, outrage us, but give us some crunchy grist for our mill!

  115. Venise Alstergren

    CRAPS: You have managed something of extreme difficulty. You are so far up your fundamental orifice you have turned yourself inside out.

    Well done!

    On your tomb stone it will be written. “Hear lies the only man who, when he farted, the wind came out his mouth”.

  116. Cripes...

    Elegant eloquence.

  117. Venise Alstergren

    “Here” Not Hear. Para three…..

  118. Leo Braun

    Venise Alstergren: “The contempt with which Israel treats the Palestinians is equalled only by the contempt with which the Germany of WWII showed towards the Jews”! Accordingly, Gestapo had discussed with Ginsburg how to promote and expand the illegal Jewish immigration into Palestine, against the will of the British mandate enforcers.

    That summer, Eichmann met in Vienna with an another Mossad representative, Bar-Gilead, who requested permission to set-up training camps for the prospective emigrants, so that they could be prepared for the hard labour in Palestine. As a result in consultation with Berlin, Eichmann was granted permission to supply all that was needed to facilitate the zionist training program. Consequently, Pina Ginsburg in Berlin, in close collaboration with the Nazi Reich set-up training camps, purportedly to streamline the emigration of the disenfranchised German Jews to Palestine.

    Thus thanks to the elders of zion ingenuity knack, Nazis found a final solution to the nagging problem while the imperialist zionists succeeded in skewing the demographics of the ravaged
    Palestine towards the Jewish majority. Simultaneously as a selective rounding-up of the targeted German Jews became viable due to the distinctive Jew physiognomies. Accordingly, Haganah commander Feivel Polkes dispatched to Berlin his proficient head-hunters on the mission to spot a Jew in exchange for moreover Nazi resources release towards the zionist colonisation of Palestine.

  119. Leo Braun

    • “Many who have posted their shallow comments here, in ignorance, fear or hold in contempt what they don’t understand”! Finally woke up to recognise their conditioned existence under fanatical tribe’s hegemony. Where since the beginning “us versus them” mentality was sewn. No wonder bewitched hearts swelled with pride: “Our land is the homeland”, gullible Aussies thought. Whereas all other places simply were a foreign land. “We are the chosen people”, zionist demagogues insisted. The only ones worthy of our nation’s concern; if bombs fall on Afghanistan, Iraq, Beirut or Gaza, and the Orientals human rights are violated but it makes our lives better, it’s of little concern to us.

    I myself am not a nationalist Jew, who thinks that the world would be better off, without the fascist zionism. Same applies to the neurotic militarism and the obsessive devout devotions, because religion is opium of the conditioned masses. Fanatical nationalism and indoctrinated religions have been more detrimental to the humanity on the whole, than any other vicious force, imaginable. Whilst our Jew lesser brethren were scapegoated always as a collateral human shield, to deflect focus from the actual evildoers committed crimes against the humanity. Taboo for discussion in galut (amoral world outside Israel). How else fascist zionists to enforce blind-leading-blind dill-flock’s adherence in the commandeered kehilots?

    So much for the wishful thinking that all the Jews mattered equally, when in fact our Jew lesser brethren were not the almighty chosen lot. Although sharing ancestor in common with the Jew peers of the realm, yet having descended via “inferior” lineage. Ever since exploited for millenniums as a collateral human shield. Where instead of zionism being the hope of the Jews, our blood has been political salvation of the fascist zionism. With a prima facie case to answer for the diabolical Pale of Settlement.

    Denoting burning stake of the final solution!

    What meant to culminate with the six millions burnt offering to the insatiable Yahweh, purportedly obligatory before aliyah to proceed. No wonder religiously indoctrinated fanatics were deeply divided as to the scriptural legitimacy in a treyf creation Jewish utopia in Palestine. In the meantime gigantic internment with several millions of Jews lasted for 130 years, during 1791-1917 period, in anticipation of the sacrificial inferno to come. Hence the immense significance attributed to the holocaust.

  120. Cripes...


    Great comment. We live and we learn.

    I’m out of my depth here, so I’ll confine my participation to reading comments from others.

  121. Elan

    Papa don’t preach..

    Just post.

  122. Venise Alstergren

    LEO BRAUN: Like CRAPS I’m feeling a little out of my depth here. ELAN said it better. ‘Don’t preach’.

    Although your para two on 5 May ’10 @ 11.48am makes a lot of sense.

  123. Leo Braun

    “We have a youthful history of our own that future students should be aware of. Our very own history and not some other nation’s disastrous mistakes. Why the push to make ANZAC day our National Day? Why should we celebrate the death of an empire, English or American”? [Venise Alstergren]

    • Actually, duped Aussies glorified Anzacs attainment: birth of a nation in the Holy Land. Whilst the commandeered kehilots downunder were indoctrinated to believe that of a greater ethical importance was to condemn the prejudices against one’s own people, than that against the all others. Apparently precluded in their own countries from asking imperative questions in the zionist era of universal deceit. Yet not a day passing by, without a zionist lobby, newspaper, television or radio pundit to ask: “Is it good for the Jews”?

    Due to the innate affinity, naturally felt by the Jews, who belonged to the same species. Indicative of the authentic source, Jewish people intuitive connection, inherited naturally at birth. Sadly, exploited for the wrong reasons! No wonder none ever was able to run for political office, unless subscribed to the taboo for discussion ethos. As clannish inhabitants in the insular communes were indoctrinated (not unlike the exclusive brethren) as supposedly being descendants of the wandering Jew tribes. Who find no rest outside the native land, their ancestors were expelled from. Hence they followed zionist teachings as perpetual wanderers in a quest of aliyah to eretz Israel.

  124. Leo Braun

    Apparently with the blessing of the fully fanged Labor icons like the terribly biased Michael Danby MP. Adamant to surpass his political counterpart’s precedent, whatever it takes. No wonder, ill conditioned folks in the insular communes ignored principal allegiance to Oz, while this awesome land of plenty was exploited as a surrogate incubator by the countless organisations. Whose core objective has been always aliyah to eretz Israel.

    Idealised as the highest aspiration of the tzioni Jew to achieve by abandoning Australian diaspora (exile / galut / galus). Where in this context the raison detre of the (patriotic) tzioni Jews is to support unconditionally rogue regime in Israel, through the sponsored junket tours, biased education, fierce propaganda, geared-up pogroms of the “self-hating” Jews, financial contributions and obviously continuous migration.

  125. Leo Braun

    Thus commandeered tzioni communes in diaspora became a “legitimate embodiment” of the Jewish people, whilst the average unaffiliated or independent Jew being shunned as norm. Not mentioning our targeted conscientious objectors (blacklisted for life on unemployable’s heap). Written off, as the “self-hating” Jew outcasts. How else staunch zionists to enforce blind-leading-blind dill-flock’s adherence?

    As competing forces jostled for power over shtetl’s disinfo, in reflection on the avant-garde Galus Australis, launched censoring zionist site in June 2009 by the splinter group who abandoned the sinking “Sensible Jew“, which reared its head into prominence in May 2009.

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