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Voices of Gallipoli

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Barry Rees View Drop Down

Joined: 12 Sep 2010
Location: Haverfordwest
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    Posted: 12 Sep 2010 at 21:02
Voices of Gallipoli, by Maurice Shadbolt, published by Hodder and Stoughton 1988.

After research in official documents, memoirs, war histories and diaries, Shadbolt talked to the tiny and diminishing band of NZ Gallipoli Vetrens. Most of them, by then in their eighties and nineties, had never told their stories before and knew that this may be their last chance to talk.

Shadbolt tells the stories of 12 such men in this book, with an overview of the campaign.

This extract, from John Skinner, a Sergeant in the Otago Infantry Battalion, gives a flavour of their feelings about the Turks (after talking about shooting at the vultures circling the dead):

"As for the Turks, and killing them, the longer we were on Gallipoli, the less bitter front-line soldiers became towards them. We had our job and they had theirs. They had their ups and downs and casualties like us. They likewise had to live with decomposing dead, and the flies breeding among the dead, and swarming over us too, into our mouths and noses and eyes, making sleep impossible in the front line. We and the Turks were in exactly the same unfortunate position. Not that we felt sorry for them. If we'd felt sorry for them we'd have felt sorry for ourselves."
Kind regards

Barry Rees

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