The Defenders of Tobruk. Photograph dated 5 September 1941 showing guards at 9th Division Rear HQ at Tobruk (negative by Frank Hurley).AWM007494
Some of Australia's first major battles of the Second World War were the actions and campaigns fought in the Middle East and the Mediterranean, where the three Australian services were in action throughout 1941. For eight months, from April until December 1941, Australian and British troops defiantly held the fortress of Tobruk in western Libya.
Seventy years later, to accompany the 2011 exhibition The Rats of Tobruk the Education team at the Memorial prepared a blog, featuring diary entries of two men who were there: Chaplain Owen Thomas Cosgriff and Warrant Officer Class II Arthur Francis Bryant, as well as extracts from the letters of Captain Edmund Crawford Lecky MBE. Every day the team uploaded the diary entries and extracts from the letters written on that day's date in 1941. More information on the Siege of Tobruk.
The following blog provides information about the action that took place over an eight-month period in and around Tobruk. It also highlights the conditions of war and provides personal insight into the lives, personalities, and achievements of individuals who experienced it. This blog, therefore, is dedicated to those men who were there, to those who came home, and to those who never left. Here's to the Rats of Tobruk!