Nothing that follows is to dishonour the bravery and sacrifice of the young Australians who suffered and died in World War I.
However if we are to avoid repeating such disasters we need a larger and clearer perspective than we have been getting from much of the commentary, official and unofficial, marking the centenary of the war.
The Australian nation was not forged at Gallipoli or any other foreign battlefield. There was already a vigorous nation by 1913.
How should non-Aboriginal Australians relate to our indigenous people and their culture? Should we bother? What should we “do” about Aboriginal “problems”?
I have learnt over a longish life that when we get to the essence of seemingly difficult or intractable issues there can be simple answers. Simple, though not necessarily easy. Challenging perhaps, but ways forward can be readily identified. So it is proving with my own, fairly recent experience with Aboriginal culture and people.