Waltzing Matilda: The Secret History of Australia's Favourite Song

Waltzing Matilda: The Secret History of Australia's Favourite Song

Waltzing Matilda: The Secret History of Australia's Favourite Song

Waltzing Matilda: The Secret History of Australia's Favourite Song

Excerpt

THE BATTLE OF MUAR was the last major battle in the Malayan campaign in 1942. During the vicious fighting on 20 January the Australian soldiers of 2/29th were fighting near Parit Sulong along the Muar Road. Japanese soldiers with six heavy machine-guns had pinned down ‘C’ Company of the 2/19th, who were under intense attack, with mounting dead and wounded. Lieutenant William Picken Carr led a forward attack through a swamp with a platoon from the 2/29th and reached a point within sixty yards of the machine-guns. Under orders to divert gunfire from the 2/19th, who were being slaughtered, they were ordered to charge—the attack was impossible. Carr and his men rose as one and charged the enemy guns, all singing ‘Waltzing Matilda’. They were mown down.

This made a lasting impression on the Japanese soldiers, who would many times speak of the Australian soldiers . . .

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