Chasing the Norm

Australian academic and blogger on politics, international relations, and culture

ANZAC’s Long Shadow

ANZAC’s Long Shadow: The Cost of Our National Obsession
by James BrownBrown - ANZACs

This is an excellent book. Short, sharply written, but giving a depth and expansiveness to a question which is often written off as simple or straightforward in newspaper op-eds.

It is perhaps telling that it took a former military officer to write this book. Such is the odd nature of Australia’s relationship with its military. As James demonstrates we have been failing our troops for too long, both in our understanding of what we ask them to do in our name, and in the support we provide for them when they get home. Yet, we spend hundreds of millions commemorating those who died nearly a century ago, and refuse to even discuss the possibility of failure or misuse of our military.

Like Ross Garnaut’s Dog Days, this is what i’d term a citizenship book (and props to their co-publisher, Redback for what is shaping up to be an important series). A book that I wish all citizens would read and think about (certainly it is engaging enough that all could) and then form part of the wider public debate.

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