On ANZAC day: Some overlooked realities behind the ANZAC myth.

Today is Anzac Day, commemorating the date of the landing of Anzac forces at Gallipoli on 25th April 1915.

While it is customary to remember the sacrifices made by a generation of young men in wartime, celebrating bravery and heroism, there is an aspect that is always ignored.

When we say ‘lest we forget’, we choose not to remember some very uncomfortable things.

What Does Glorifying The ANZAC Myth Say About Our Attitudes To Violent Men Today? by Nick Irving



30 thoughts on “On ANZAC day: Some overlooked realities behind the ANZAC myth.

  1. That’s always the question, isn’t it ?: how can we maintain our self-congratulatory belief that we are a “Christian nation,” while we train, and justify, and command our citizens to kill ?

    Few Christians are sufficiently radical in their faith to accept the simple answer: we can’t.

    (When you read this, by the way, welcome back !)

  2. Wow.

    Especially to the varicose veins and the thread of venereal disease… etc. (i.e. violence). I obviously don’t (since I’ve never been there) experience the sentiment in the air for ANZAC Day, but that is a seriously grave, or at least curious, matter — that the day overshadows other holidays/special days.

    Very interesting article, including the observation that the face of the soldier is a golden-haired, white man. It’s hard to get people to recognize that means anything other than that such men are awesome.

  3. “Welcome” back, Onesimus!

    I don’t know if you’ll think this is tangential,
    but I was annoyed Huckabee considered it appropriate
    to use the term “oldest profession in the world.”

    ( [I don’t think the article shares that he said it.]
    It’s in the recording. It’s like when people say slaves had jobs or lodging.)

    Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) made an ill-timed analogy Wednesday on Fox News, invoking the idea of “kissing a woman leaning away from you” the same day host Bill O’Reilly was fired by Fox News over sexual harassment allegations.

    Speaking on Fox’s “The Factor” ……

  4. These are somewhat related to the general topic (two more along the lines of abuse of females and then one from the viewpoint — with which I agree — that we want to honor and respect, and pay, without trickery — our service men and women). One comment (from me) on the brief mention in one of the videos that someone involved with the photo scandal brought up the idea of “what you get” when women are in the military: Every Republican running to be the nominee for President this time around said they were in favor of requiring young women to sign up for the draft. That was not Republican in the past (for a long time); apparently, that’s over. But of course the women should suffer for the current policy, anyway, of allowing women in.

    Sen. Gillibrand on photo scandal: ‘No accountability in this…
    Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., says she was not satisfied with the answers she received from the Commandant at the Armed Services hearing on the nude photo scandal. Duration: 7:23

    Rep. Speier wants action, not words from Marine leaders —
    Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., introduced legislation to protect the privacy of service members in the wake of the nude photo scandal in the Marines. Duration: 6:21

    ‘Troop Tax’ For GI Bill Sparks Outrage —
    Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America CEO Paul Rieckhoff tells Greta Van Susteren the proposal is “a whole new level of stupid out of Washington.” Duration: 3:51

  5. http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/330215-trump-declines-to-call-mass-killings-of-armenians-a-genocide
    Politics and Culture: The Promise —
    Christian Bale, Oscar Isaac and John Prendergast join
    Hardball to discuss their new movie The Promise on Armenian genocide. Duration: 9:12

    This topic seems to coincide in timing each year.

  6. Thanks for the “welcome back” Steve.

    I believe the myth of the “Christian nation” that effectively justifies the stance of “Christian” patriotism is among the more serious deceptions in the church today.

    While I was away I watched a few videos by a Christian teacher – most of which were very interesting and had a lot of good teaching – but the one I was most interested in watching was a big disappointment. It was about the differences between identifying ourselves with a nation as compared to the Kingdom of God. Sadly, while the teacher and his interview subject stressed that believers should identify with the Kingdom of God, they also justified pride in one’s nation (particularly their own USA).

    I would suggest that NONE of our nations deserve our pride and allegiance. A look back into national history shows there is no room for national pride that would be consistent with following Jesus.

    Using Australia as an example. It is a nation founded on the dispossession, oppression and murder of its original inhabitants. And it is a nation that has consistently followed others into wars for causes that had no real relevance to its own national security; leading to the deaths of 10s of 1000s of its own citizens as well as the citizens of other nations.
    A quite recent example was the invasion of Iraq in 2003 – that in addition to the deaths of countless Iraqi citizens and the decimation of the Christian community in Iraq, it has effectively led to the most serious destabilising of large areas of the middle east and helped give birth to IS.

  7. Yeah, I would say I’m not a passivist (personally, nor in terms of a nation). But I don’t think we should claim we do what we do because we are Christian; it’s not like only Christians can ever do something good. (And we know Christians have done a lot bad. Do we rationalise then the “nobody is perfect” mantra — but only for Christians or some Christians, and more recently maybe for Jews too?)

    And self-defense doesn’t have to be good in a greater sense
    like liberating the concentration camps during WWII.

    But how often is that what we’re doing?

  8. Hi Marleen,

    Occasionally war may be inescapable for a nation, but while the cause may be just, the resulting methods often aren’t.

    WWII was conducted for good reason, opposing Hitler’s aggressive agenda that included the massacre of millions of Jews. However, opposing Hitler by wiping out cities and killing 100s of 1000s of civilians shows the corruptive effects of large scale violence, where such things become acceptable actions to achieve a desired goal. (Justifying it by saying Hitler did it first isn’t a valid argument).

  9. Absolutely, saying Hitler did it first isn’t a valid argument.

    And right now I’m very concerned because the president in my country tends to criticise, vociferously, other people (for something they may have or, usually, may not have and often observably have not done) to then go on to be found doing those things himself with no observable shame or embarrassment or remorse or even acknowledgement of any contradiction. It’s like he’s laying groundwork, for how terrible he intends to be (not in fact caring whatsoever what someone might or might not do wrong but what he gets). So, when he (years before being President) insisted that Obama shouldn’t do certain things like get involved in Syria because that would cause a third world war, I think he only wanted to save starting WWIII for himself.

  10. I think he only wanted to save starting WWIII for himself.

    And he seems to be doing his best to achieve that – not only his response regarding Syria, but his bull-at-a-gate approach to North Korea.

    Coincidentally I started reading about the Korean War a few weeks before the current situation became so tense.

  11. Even if he doesn’t quite start World War Three, I think he’s capitalising on the power of having the potential to start conflagration anywhere — to get himself out of debt with Russia, with China, and so on. Meanwhile, he is likely invested in the (industrial actual) creation of armaments.

    We spent a bunch of money on some activity in Syria and didn’t take out their chemical weapons. And didn’t do anything about the leader who supposedly used them, or the Russian enablers.

    Also see this recent occurrence.

    Why is Trump propping up an autocrat?
    Trump’s congratulatory call to Turkish president Recep Erdoğan makes
    a lot more sense when you hear what he told Steve Bannon. Duration: 4:13

  12. Marleen, Joel Richardson seems to have a lot to say about Erdoğan and Turkey in his “The Underground” videos. He was particularly concerned about support for Erdoğan coming from the Trump administration in a video I saw recently.
    I’ve only recently started to look through them all so can’t recommend (or otherwise) any specific video. Out of the few I’ve watched I’ve found Richardson makes some interesting observations. (Although I’m disappointed with some things he says – he tends to occasionally veer into partisan political thinking at times).
    Here’s the link to his site if you want to have a look through the 68 episodes for yourself.


  13. He’s the one I quoted recently as saying, “Pay attention, Christians.”

    I didn’t name him (or draw a focus to his name) at that time.

    The best light to put on his imploring to pay attention
    is not that he means of himself, all eyes on me.
    Also, he clearly indicates he has a primary* view… or
    generally that he’s not saying he’s got it all figured out for folks.

    But he does have interesting observations. Last time I was listening to
    him, I linked over to a site that had many videos (I think the same ones) hooked
    together. So I just “turned it on” and didn’t have to keep starting a new one after the other.
    I wonder if that was the YouTube channel he mentions in one video, and says someone else runs it.

    * This has to do with prophetic outlook. He is definitely NOT preterist. And he sees Mecca as Mystery Babylon.

  14. Correction: He said, in an agitated manner (like looking down on people),

    That’s in the particular video* I think you’re referring to when he’s concerned about the Trump administration (but only because of Michael Flynn) and Turkey (and Thanksgiving). It’s kinda sad, because he says it’s “a miracle” that someone (Trump) is (was) talking about “draining the swamp.” Well then, it was a false “miracle” or false sign — a wonder to people who couldn’t see through what Trump was doing.

    * There are probably at least two, though, because he refers also to another one on Turkey prior.

  15. My point in quoting him was to show that this person who was being recommended (Joel Richardson) was an example of someone who does look at and comment on the news — despite the recommender’s repeated pushing to not care about current events in news, because of the implication rather that we should focus on higher things. (A curiosity how said recommended teacher got anything to talk about in that regard. He just “knew” like from the mouth of God that Flynn argued for Turkey in a newspaper?)

    How does the teacher decide the U.S.A. or New York isn’t Babylon, but Mecca is? He bases it on his sense of things from being informed to some extent over his lifetime and through unnamed current news sources. He has also done some traveling, so he may have some first-hand knowledge of Muslim countries; I don’t think that’s his primary experience with world and political, especially governmental, information (in my/his country or in Muslim countries either). [Wherever he gets his news, he was behind.]

    Strange that one of his main reasons for not being a preterist is that it’s not good character to promote — the typical middle-aged man who trades in his wife for a younger model. But still, yippee that Hillary is getting beat. (Hillary not winning is not the point here; yippee for Trump winning is the problem.) By the way, there was corruption with the Clintons (especially Bill), but there were also lies made up about them (especially her). And a “5%” figure on their charity (true or not) doesn’t fix Trump’s.

    I think the guy is not only caught up in partisan politics, but generational experience. His generational politics he brings up is my generational experience, too, but it can be overcome. It’s interesting also… because the video I was listening to just before re-listening to the Thanksgiving one (they are not contiguous on the list) was one with a guest about the younger generation being tired of their parent’s habits, but in the context of prophetic prediction or sensationalism or marketing. There’s a blind spot.

  16. he sees Mecca as Mystery Babylon

    I suspect he’s on the wrong track there.
    Presumably his main reason for thinking that is because of his conviction that the antichrist and his kingdom will be Muslim.

    Personally I think other cities under Muslim control would be more likely. Why not Istanbul, considering his focus on Turkey? The former Constantinople, and Byzantium.
    Or one of my favourite candidates Dubai – location of a new “tower of Babel”, and have you seen those manmade Islands created to form a map of the world? A city of great wealth and excess if there ever was one; which perhaps fits the description in Revelation of a place of “excessive luxuries”.

    Both of those possibilities seem more likely to me than Mecca – both having a kind of international link to the rest of the world; Istanbul literally bridges east and west; Europe and Asia.

    However, I recognise that my options are no less speculation than Richardson’s, and having not heard his arguments for Mecca, he might yet convince me he’s not as wrong as I currently think.

  17. I think he does well in presenting why he’s thinking what he’s thinking in terms of how he’s reading the Bible, and how that compares to/contrasts with other people’s (scholars’/teachers’/writers’) viewpoints (some anyway) generally. And he brings in empathy and what seems ethically right or nourishing. You can take it all in and figure out if you agree, disagree, or are just taking in food for thought. (That’s how I approach any teacher or presenter, but it seems to be his style overall.) I find him to be worthy of the hearing, a sober teacher who is along the line of encouraging you to think for yourself based on being rational; that’s how I see him, even though the sessions are recorded and mostly all him. One video [well, actually two, but I saw one] I appreciated was him going into quite some detail to show how a so-called current prophecy going around (which I hadn’t heard of and didn’t really care about) had no merit. It had something to do with astronomy, and he went out of his way to be specific. He started this one by apologising for having been too sloppy in his rejection earlier.

  18. I do get tired of hearing “liberal” and “conservative” and Evangelical and Protestant.

  19. I do get tired of hearing “liberal” and “conservative” and Evangelical and Protestant.


    Oh, and “left.”

    These are supposed to be zinger words.

    Yes, they’ve all become meaningless words that are no longer relevant to the concepts they originally described. I find they are mostly used as shortcuts to avoid intelligent, rational and MORAL assessment.

    A great number of Christians tend to describe themselves as politically “conservative” – and yet look at the ideology behind “conservative” political parties and you usually find favour being shown to the rich and disdain for poor – as if riches indicate God’s blessings and poverty is a result of laziness or immoral lifestyles.

  20. Another word that has lost meaning is “Christian”.
    Even the qualifying description of “born again Christian” has become equally distanced from what it was originally intended to identify.

  21. I don’t mean the words shouldn’t ever be used. But it’s a habit (almost hallowed) to use “left” as shorthand where one doesn’t have to think things through or explain. Just immediately jump to “bad.”

    Clinging to Protestant and Evangelical is curious too, because Joel has to instruct that “The Reformation” led to people automatically assuming Rome/the Vatican has to be Babylon/the anti-Christ.

    By the way, one detail to share for anyone who wants to consider it is that the anti-Christ doesn’t have to originate from the city that is — or will be — Mystery Babylon. And… one more tidbit for now:

    This I heard somewhere else, not from Joel. I’ve heard it also long ago, but was reminded recently. Someplace in Russia is sometimes referred to as the “third Rome” — St. Petersburg maybe.

  22. http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/russians-behind-payments-for-flynn-s-work-for-turkey-report-929675843593
    Rachel Maddow highlights the details of a new report from Politico into the people behind disgraced former Trump NSA Mike Flynn’s foreign agent work for Turkey which found not Turks but Russians.
    Duration: 23:36

    (Little note: Even if it’s not Turks but Russians behind Flynn,
    it was still nevertheless Trump who said he himself has a “conflict of interest”
    in Turkey … on top of all his positive statements about Putin.)

    I’m not sure why Greta is calling it a secret vote,
    but I’m perplexed at the outcome.

    There’s another zinger word: “feminist.”

    And the following video touches on “race baiting.”

    Rev. Al Sharpton: O’Reilly promoted white nationalism
    Sharpton reflects on his adversarial relationship with the cable news host,
    who was ousted from Fox News after two decades … Duration: 4:35

    Trump puts a salesman in charge of the draft
    Donald Trump appoints a former state senator and marketer
    with no military service as Director of the Selective Service System. Duration: 3:28

    The dangers of lauding Trump’s aggression
    Much of the press is lauding Donald Trump as ‘presidential’ for
    his recent bombings and missile launches – and Trump is eating it up. Duration: 2:22

  23. [* In case (per above): I should add that I didn’t hear Joel use the terms “feminist” or “race baiting.”]

    The first three links below are helpful maps.








    Gallipoli: Why do Australians celebrate a military disaster?



    http://www.allaboutturkey.com/gelibolu.htm (Gallipoli)

  24. Back to Joel Richardson, I couldn’t figure out (even though he explained a little bit) why he was bothered that Turkey is against Iran and Syria — or their leaders — or cause them trouble.

    According to Israeli officials, the jet will be able to outsmart Russian S-300 missiles, which are stationed in both Syria and Iran. ……

  25. Here’s an aspect, with which I agree, of Joel Richardson’s disdain for Turkey’s leadership.

    Turkey’s Kurdish Agenda
    By Dr. Binoy Kampmark
    April 27, 2017
    Region: Middle East & North Africa

    And here’s an aspect of our own (culturally speaking) ridiculousness.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/25/business/chobani-alex-jones.html?ribbon-ad-idx=10&rref=business/media&module=Ribbon&version=context&region=Header&action=click&contentCollection=Media&pgtype=article&_r=0 Hamdi Ulukaya

    Mystifies me why “the right” doesn’t complain about Trump bringing in or using foreign workers [and products].

  26. I apologize; Hamdi Ulukaya is not the author of that one article, as it might appear. I meant to make
    a sentence there. He is the subject of both NYT articles, the person being harassed by conspiracists.

Comments are closed.