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World War I

Much of the Australian ethos of ‘mateship’ and honour has been carved from the trauma of World War I. Legends surrounding the Anzacs, Gallipoli, the Battle of Beersheba and the Australian Light Horse Brigade originated from this war.Of the approximately 413 000 Australian servicemen who fought in the conflict, many did not return. The last Australian veteran of World War I has passed away, and yet we still honour those who gave service in this war on Anzac Day, the 25th of April, every year.

As cited on the Australian War Memorial website, 38.7 per cent per cent of the total male population of Australia aged between 18 and 44 enlisted to fight in World War I. With a casualty rate of almost 65 per cent, the Australian casualty rate proportionate to total embarkations was the highest of the war.

How were Indigenous veterans treated upon their return from service?

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John Lovett

Recommended for Year 9, 10 and 11. John talks about his father's experience of fighting in World War I in the 15th Machine Gun Battalion in 1917 and his bitter experience of not being honoured upon his return to Australia.

Watch the video