ANZAC Day 2015

April 25th, 2015

It is ANZAC Day today in Australia. We are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the landing of Gallipoli.

As I reflect on ANZAC Day this year I am reminded that the ANZAC legend is all about helping others. Our soldiers left our shores to help other nations fight against those who would try to take what was not theirs.

Our troops took a stand against bullies. This tradition continues today in helping the people of Iraq, Afghanistan and in other peace keeping missions around the world.

Below is some information about ANZAC Day.

When is Anzac Day?

Anzac Day falls on the 25th of April each year. The 25th of April was officially named Anzac Day in 1916.

What does ‘ANZAC’ stand for?

‘ANZAC’ stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps.

On the 25th of April 1915, Australian and New Zealand soldiers formed part of the allied expedition that set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula. These became known as Anzacs and the pride they took in that name continues to this day.

Why is this day special to Australians?

On the morning of 25 April 1915, the Anzacs set out to capture the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open the Dardanelles to the allied navies. The objective was to capture Constantinople (now Istanbul in Turkey), the capital of the Ottoman Empire, and an ally of Germany.

The Anzacs landed on Gallipoli and met fierce resistance from the Ottoman Turkish defenders. Their plan to knock Turkey out of the war quickly became a stalemate, and the campaign dragged on for eight months.

At the end of 1915, the allied forces were evacuated. Both sides suffered heavy casualties and endured great hardships. Over 8,000 Australian soldiers were killed. News of the landing on Gallipoli and the events that followed had a profound impact on Australians at home. The 25th of April soon became the day on which Australians remember the sacrifice of those who had died in the war.

The Anzacs were courageous and although the Gallipoli campaign failed in its military objectives, the Australian and New Zealand actions during the campaign left us all a powerful legacy.

What does Anzac Day mean today?

With the coming of the Second World War, Anzac Day also served to commemorate the lives of Australians who died in that war. The meaning of Anzac Day today includes the remembrance of all Australians killed in military operations.