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Location - South east Europe/Middle East; Capital - Ankara; Population - 50 million; Currency - Turkish Lire MORE TURKEY

From Istanbul I took one of the long but very informative day-tours of Gallipoli, a major World War I battlefield - April 2019.


turkeynote3The 5 Lire note, with Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, founder of modern day Turkey










turkey1261After a 5hr drive from Istanbul we arrived in Eceabat on the waters of the Dardanelles, and gateway to Gallipoli


turkey1262The Gallipoli Campaign, or Dardanelles Campaign, took place in 1915 and pitted the Allies - principally British, Australians, New Zealanders, Indians, Canadians and Sri Lankans - against the Ottomans (Turks). The Allies aimed to capture the Dardanelles and Bosphorus, a major supply line to Russia, as well as Constantinople (Istanbul) thereby weakening the Ottoman Empire.

The campaign ended in humiliating defeat for the Allies, including one of its commanders Winston Churchill. Conversely it was seen as a great victory for the Ottoman Turks and one Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, a campaign commander and future president of Turkey - Eceabat


turkey1263Our first stop was Beach Cemetery - Gallipoli














turkey1266 Over 390 Commonwealth soldiers are buried or commemorated at Beach Cemetery, including Australian John Simpson - Gallipoli















turkey1268A lone beach bunker below Beach Cemetery - Gallipoli


turkey1272An Anzac Cove plaque overlooking the Aegean Sea, a few kms as the crow flies from the Dardanelles on the other side of the narrow Gallipoli Peninsula, and from the Dardanelles onwards to Constantinople and the Black Sea and Russia - Gallipoli


turkey1274Anzac Cove and surrounding beaches were the site of the Allied landings on 25 April 1915, later to be met by resistance from Mustafa Kemal's forces - Gallipoli















turkey1275The Ari Burnu Memorial displays the words of Ataturk from 1934: 'Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives.. You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us.. They have become our sons as well' - Gallipoli














turkey1279Close to the Ari Burnu Memorial is Ari Burnu Cemetery where Allied troops also landed - Gallipoli


turkey1288Although landings occurred in April 1915 the campaign began in February 1915 with a naval assault, and continued until January 1916. 120,000 died or went missing, close to 50% on either side, and over 220,0000 wounded. Sickness, such as typhoid and dysentery, accounted for many thousands more - Gallipoli


turkey1289Wreaths laid for Anzac Day, commemorated on 25 April - Gallipoli














turkey1291The Mehmetcik Statue is a monument dedicated to 'Little Mehmet', who rescued a wounded New Zealand soldier - Gallipoli















turkey1294In just four days from 6 August 1915 7,000 men died at Lone Pine when Australian troops captured this hill from Turkish forces - Gallipoli


turkey1295The central memorial at Lone Pine Cemetery - Gallipoli


turkey1297A serpentine guest at Lone Pine Cemetery - Gallipoli















turkey1299This groove in the land is what remains of a battlefield trench - Gallipoli















turkey1302Further trenches along the hill ridge - Gallipoli


turkey1305There's also Turkish cemeteries and memorials dedicated to the Ottoman soldiers - Gallipoli


turkey1308 The 57th Regiment Cemetery is the resting place of Turkish soldiers of Mustafa Kemal's 57th regiment, many of whom died repelling the assaults - Gallipoli














turkey1312A statue of Huseyin Kacmaz who died in 1994, the last known Turkish survivor of the Gallipoli Campaign - Gallipoli
















turkey1314We continued to the Nek, a location made famous by the 1981 film Gallipoli with Mel Gibson. Australian troops went 'over the top' and were killed in their hundreds before ever reaching enemy lines - Gallipoli


turkey1317There's a great view of the beaches and coastline from the Nek - Gallipoli


turkey1323The calm waters of the Aegean Sea from the Nek - Gallipoli
















turkey1325I think this was a water tank from the campaign - Gallipoli
















turkey1326Most of the Gallipoli peninsula is a protected national park with much greenery and vegetation - Gallipoli


turkey1327The tour's final site was Chunuk Bair, the Allied forces original main target and where 30,000 soldiers died in just five days in August 1915. On the right is a memorial to New Zealand soldiers - Gallipoli


turkey1329A statue of Mustafa Kemal, later to be known as Ataturk, the founder and first president of the Republic of Turkey in 1923 - Gallipoli















turkey1333Walking through reconstructed trenches at Chunuk Bair - Gallipoli
















turkey1334Two of five stone tablets at Chunuk Bair which detail the August 1915 battle - Gallipoli


turkey1335One of the Chunuk Bair Mehmet Memorials - Gallipoli




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