Battle of Messines
  • Battle of Messines

Battle of Messines Aust Army Campaign Series no18


The Battle of Messines 1917 by Craig Deayton

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Australian Army Campaign Series


On 7 June 1917, the British Second Army launched its attack on Messines Ridge, detonating 19 giant mines beneath the German front-line positions. By the end of the day, one of the strongest positions on the Western Front had fallen, a place of such importance that the Germans had pledged to hold it at any cost. It was the greatest British victory in three years of war. The first two years of the First World War had represented an almost unending catalogue of disaster for the Australians.

Messines was the first time that Major General John Monash would command the newly formed 3rd Division in battle. The 3rd Division  came into the line alongside the battle-scarred 4th Australian Division which was badly mauled at Bullecourt just six weeks earlier in one of the worst Australian defeats of the war.

The fighting at Messines would descend into unimaginable savagery, a lethal and sometimes hand-to- hand affair of bayonets, clubs, bombs and incessant machine- gun fire, described by one Australian as ‘72 hours of Hell’. After their string of bloody defeats over 1915 and 1916, Messines would be the ultimate test for the Australians.

Data sheet

Book Condition:
Outer Cover on Book:
Soft Cover
Total Pages:
Popular Australian Army Campaign Series
Dimensions in mm :
245mm x 170mm

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