Name: Remembering Gallipoli
Subtitle: President McAleese's Great War Crusade
Author: Walsh, Pat
Category: Irish Collection
Publisher: Athol Books
ISBN: 978 1 903497 24 3
Contents: The Irish President Mrs. Mary McAleese pays an official visit to Turkey to unveil a memorial to the Irish who died in the British invasion at Gallipoli in 1915. Such a visit is an unusual departure for Ireland, given the historical perspective of the independent Irish State.
Gallipoli is quite a famous battle in Ireland and many people know that there was Irish participation in it. However, the Irish participation at Gallipoli has never been commemorated in the same way that, for example, Australians and New Zealanders have marked it. However, tours organized from Ireland, to coincide with the visit of Mrs. McAleese, have advertised themselves as 'The Gallipoli Pilgrimage'—a phrase with religious meaning, borrowed from previous Australian commemorations.
There is a view in Australia that their participation in the Gallipoli landings was a major milestone in the forging of the Australian nation. Paul Keating, the former Premier, caused something of a controversy a few years ago when he dissented from this view and remarked:
"Gallipoli was shocking for us… Dragged into service by the imperial government in an ill-conceived and poorly executed campaign, we were cut to ribbons and dispatched. In some respects we are still at it; not at the suffering and the dying, but still turning up at Gallipoli… we still go on as though the nation was born again or even was redeemed there. This is utter and complete nonsense. For these reasons I have never been to Gallipoli and I never will" (The Age, October 31, 2008).
Whether Australia was born at Gallipoli or not, the same cannot be said of Ireland and the Irish participation in the assault on Turkey......
A Belfast Magazine, No. 37
Extracts: No online extracts available at this time.
Errata: No online errata available at this time.
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