These are pictures I took in Sydney, Australia, in 2009.
Written in the concrete wall is
TO THE HORSES OF THE DESERT MOUNTED CORPS
to the gallant horses who carried them
over Sinai Desert into Palestine
1915 - 1918
They suffered wounds, thirst, hunger and
weakness almost beyond endurance but never failed.
They did not come home. [*]
We will never forget them.
There is also a plaque in the ground, unveiled on October 31, 2007,
"commemorating the 90th anniversary of the charge at Beersheba which took place at 4.30 pm on Wednesday 31 October 1917.
The success of the charge led to an earlier conclusion of the Desert Campaign in the Middle East in World War I.
In memory of
the gallant men and horses of the 4th and 12th Light Horse Regiments that took part in the charge and those that made the supreme sacrifice."
* Over 29,000 horses were shipped to the Middle East for the war but at war's end, they could not be returned to Australia. See what was done with them here.
I tell you all this because October 31, 2012 will be the 95th anniversary.
The Australian Embassy in Tel Aviv kindly sent me the invitation partially copied below.
If anyone can attend, the Embassy would like you to RSVP by tomorrow.
I hope to be there for these very special events.
Be’er Sheva Commemoration
Annual Memorial Service
Wednesday 31 October 2012
The Australian Embassy and the Municipality of Be’er Sheva invite you to the commemoration of the 95th anniversary of the battle of Be’er Sheva. The commemoration marks the fall of the Ottoman controlled city of Be’er Sheva to British and ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) troops on 31 October 1917. The historic charge of the 4th Light Horse Brigade of the Australian Mounted Division played a critical part in this major battle.
The service will take place at the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery
at 10:30 on 31 October. (Ha’atzmaut St. Be’er Sheva)
Other commemorative events:
8:45 Refreshments and morning tea
9:30 Tribute to the Australian Light Horse Brigade
Park of the Australian Soldier
(Abba Ahimeir St. Be’er Sheva)
Enquiries: Mr Peter Adler, Pratt Foundation
11:30 Commemoration service
Turkish Memorial Monument
(Tuviyahu St. Be’er Sheva)
Enquiries: Ms Malka Reisner, Be'ersheva Municipality 08 6463910
Society for the Heritage of WWI
15:00 Re-enactment of the charge of the Australian Light Horse
Enquiries: Mr Ezra Pimental, Society for the Heritage of World War One - 054 9413155
Be'ersheva Archaelogy Museum
12:00 - 15:00 Temporary exhibition by Sgt. Thomas Henry Ivers, an artist who served in the Australian Light Horse
The Archaeology Museum
(60 HaAtzmaut St)
Enquiries: Mr Goel Drory, Museum Curator - 052 2767113
Kinneret Academic College
16:00 Ceremony in Honour of The Australian Light Horsemen at the Battle of Semakh
(Kinneret College, the Sea of Galilee near the historic Semakh Train Station)Enquiries: Mr Ziv Ofir, Deputy CEO, Kinneret Academic College
Dear readers, see also Beersheva's Park of the Australian Soldier
and about this month's re-enactment: The Light Horsemen Ride Again.
I hope to bring photos of the war cemetery for Taphophile Tragics in two weeks.