Firstly, During WW I, the Biggest casualties suffered by ANZAC troops were Fromelles (over 5000 casualties in a single battle) and Pozieres.
BTW the tactics and Command decisions were all British Army staff…with predictable results to all troops involved…By mid 1917, the independance of Field commanders of Aussie Battalions and Divisions were making itself felt…they were achieving their objectives, sometimes over-running their end points to capture further Rear line German Positions, so much so that by 1918, General Monash was in Command of the Australian Corps on the Western front ( the Black Day of the German Army, 8 August, was due to the meticulous Planning by all levels of Australian Command, right down to Platoon level…even the Germans (Ludendorff) admitted that the disaster which befell the German Army in August 1918, was due in no small part to the Preparation of the Australian troops.
Further in WW II, the North African Campaign was mostly fought by ANZAC troops early on, as they were “on their way” to England in 1940, but were “Waylaid” halfway there, due to the Fall of France, and the Italian Advance onto Egypt in June 1940.
Again, the Australians were under their own Divisional Commanders, only the British Higher Command in Cairo had overall control.
When the Japanese attacked in 1941, the Australian Government Recalled the Australian Divisions in North Africa, to defend Australia…the 8th Division was sent to defend the undefendable Singapore; and was totally Lost.
The 7th and 9th Divisions were diverted in mid-Ocean to Burma by Churchill, and the Australian PM, Curtin refused this order, and got the two divisions home to Australia, whence they defeated the Japanese in New Guinea after a Two year struggle ( 1942-44). So much for “British control of the Australian Forces”. And don’t confuse the constitutional Position of HM Queen Elisabeth II of Australia( our Constitional Head-of-State) with the British Government.
To be exact, Australia has been independant from the UK in matters of Law and Policy since the Act of Westminster (1931-- finally enacted 1942) and subsequent " separation" acts after WW II; In any case, these pieces of legal documents were simply establishing what was already “de-facto” since 1901, where the Australian Defence Forces abolished the death penalty for Military offences-- after the Breaker Morant execution in South Africa, and determined that all Australian Military personell would be subject to the Defence Act 1903,(Cth) and NOT the Army Act 1881 (UK). As a result, NO Australian was executed by Military Court-martial during WW I or II, unlike a large(relatively) number of British soldiers.
So , Mr Green, Get Your Facts Straight; whilst the British like to think they actually “Ran” the War, it was actually handled by others without so much as a “by your leave”.
And don’t think I am a Rabid OzzieOzzie Australian…My ancestry is Romano-Celtic, and my forebears fought with the Allies in WW I,(Italo-Austrian Campaign) and against the Communists in WW II (Russia and Yugoslavia); some Descendants are even now serving in the Middle East ( with their NATO units); or been in “the wrong side” of the Falklands War.
I myself served in a (now LH) Mounted Infantry Unit, with distinguised WW I war honours,(Palestine) for several years; since my time, it has been re-activated to full Regular status, and has just finished a tour of both Iraq and Afghanistan ( 2/14LH (QMI)).
Even in WW I, The Australian LH divisions in Palestine were under Australian command (Harry Chauvel, a French Huguenot descendant from South East Qld; even the Yorkshire Yeomanry in Palestine were under his command ( as well as being seconded to Col. Lawrence for Lawrence’s MG sections and RR Armoured Cars).
And as to the high casualties of British (UK) Troops on the Western front, these were more due to the command inefficencies and incompetence than to anything else…which Australian, New Zealand and Canadian independance of thought and action overcame by the end of 1916…One has only to read the unit diaries and records of the time, and study the combat reports of Both sides…yes the Germans were quite perspicacious about the abilities of their opponents on the Western front…They rated “colonial” Troops the worst situation to be against; and in the Colonial eptithet they included both White (European) and Black (French African) Troops; and of course, the Legion Etrangere; followed in order by the French and British on a mixed Unit by unit basis, with the other allies (Belgium, Portugal etc) as the lowest on the “effectiveness” list. ( even though some German Intel reports in the middle of 1916 still rated the Australians as little better than the British (English) Troops, this soon changed as the " planning" instituted by Monash and his colleagues began to take effect on Australian Operations.). This is simply, British and French Line troops were “predictable”; Colonials were " unpredictable" and sometimes “downright crazy”.
The Americans were added by the Germans to “the Colonials” late in the War, once they too had “accustomed” themselves to the meatgrinder that was Trench Warfare.
Put that in yer pipe and smoke it!!!
RIP Div. Alpina Cuneense, Ansa del Don, Russia 1942
RIP Battaglione “M”, Bersaglieri, ( 8 Div,3 batt), Piedicolle-Selva di Tarnovo, Slovenia, 1945.