When Australia entered the First World War in 1914, the Army Medical Services (AMS) had only recently been brought together after the federation of the Australian colonies in 1901. Like the rest of the 1st Australian Imperial Force (AIF), the AMS was largely an untested organisation of volunteers based on a small cadre of professionals. The prime function of the AMS was to maintain fit and healthy troops at the front or during operations, and to return the sick and injured to duty as soon as possible.In many respects the Gallipoli campaign was a doomed undertaking. The seeds of ultimate defeat in December 1915 were the risks that attended a hugely ambitious, complex, and large-scale amphibious operation - the landings on well-defended shores on the Gallipoli peninsula, under cover of darkness.Underlying the execution of the Dardanelles campaign were factors wholly outside the control of the Australian AMS.This book explores the complexities and mistakes of a campaign of this unparalled complexity and scale through the eyes of the infant Australian Army Medical Corps.
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