Anzac Day public holiday is awesome. It’s a nationwide holiday which everyone gets off work. But what is an anzac anyway? Some kind of small beetle? No, it’s a member of the Australian or New Zealand armed forces.
The day starts with a dawn service, especially for veterans, followed by a full day of drinking and remembering. If that’s not an oxymoron. For the next few years this is even more important as the Great War (1914-1918) passes out of living memory.
For the ANZACs the First World War is synonymous with Gallipoli. The Gallipoli Campaign, also known as the Dardanelles Campaign, the Battle of Gallipoli, or the Battle of Çanakkale (in Turkish). The allied forces of Russia, Britain and France, which also comprised a lot of Australian and NZ troops attempted a Naval invasion and amphibious landing of the peninsular with the view of capturing the capital of the Ottoman Empire, Constantinople (Istanbul).
They failed. It took 8 months of bitter fighting and masses of casualties on both sides for the Ottoman Empire to win their victory. The attempt was abandoned and the allied forces withdrawn to Egypt, but not before over nearly 200,000 men were either killed wounded or taken prisoner.