When Australian troops stormed Z Beach in the pre-dawn darkness of 25 April 1915, it was the culmination of one of the most complex and daunting operations in the history of warfare - a seaborne assault on a heavily fortified shore, defended by a well-prepared and forewarned enemy. To add to the difficulty, the assault was planned and executed in just 36 days. The risks were enormous, and the death toll on the beach at ANZAC Cove could have been catastrophic - as it was with the British landings further south. Yet the ANZACs had been allowed to organise their own assault, and their ingenuity, intelligence-gathering and willingness to do the unorthodox allowed them to seize a foothold and fulfil the task they had been set by their commanders. All too often the scale of that task and the successful way the ANZACs approached it have been overshadowed by events later in the campaign.
Hugh Dolan, a former intelligence officer in the Australian military, has minutely re-examined the assault itself, giving a day-by-day account of the build-up to the landing that shows a very different side to the Gallipoli story.
Soft cover, 464 pages.