Monday, 25 April 2011


Today is the anniversary of the ANZAC landing at Gallipoli, Turkey and the start of the first major battle of the ANZACs during World War I. Australians and New Zealanders mark today as a national day of remembrance to commemorate all those who died and served in military operations for their countries.

As Balikpapan is the location of a major amphibious landing site from World War II, and where the last major ANZAC engagement in World War II took place, I went along to the dawn service with some Australian friends.

It was a short but moving occasion, with Callum playing reveille on the pipes, and Jim and Adam both giving readings with Jim's daughter Jade helping to lay a wreath. What really made it poignant was where the event was held - in the Chevron compound on top of Pasir Ridge which, at the time of the invasion, was known as Hill 87 and was a important Japanese stronghold and the location of the main defensive garrison in Balikpapan.

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