Cultural diversity in the Australian Imperial Force

During the First World War, the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) – the military formation that the country sent to the war – reflected Australia’s ethnic make-up. Most of the more than 420,000 men who volunteered were of British origin, but just as men of other nationalities could be found across the country, so too could they be found in the AIF. They brought their own accents, cultures and habits to a predominantly Anglo-Saxon force and, being mostly European, blended in. The AIF was a brotherhood that admitted men from diverse backgrounds. Their bond, born of the most intense experience, transcended ethnicity.

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