100 Years of Mateship - a bond forged under fire
On 4 July 2018 Australia and the United States of America celebrated the first 100 Years of Mateship.
The date marked the 100th anniversary of the first time our troops fought side by side in an offensive action, at the Battle of Hamel on France’s Western Front. They fought under the command of one of Australia’s most revered military leaders, General Sir John Monash.
The battle plan devised by General Monash was radical for its time – it marked the first time tanks had been used as protection on a battlefield for the advancing infantry and the first time aircraft had been deployed to drop ammunition to ground troops.
General Monash predicted that the offensive would last for 90 minutes. Incredibly it took the Allied forces just 93 minutes to secure victory and turned the tide against the Germans on the Western Front.
Since that day, which helped turn the tide of the First World War, Australian and American soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen and women have served alongside one another in every major conflict. This is symbolic of the deep and enduring bond, mutual respect and close co-operation that exists between Australia and the United States.
MATESHIP: THE NEXT 100 YEARS (BEYOND THE BATTLEFIELD)
The relationship between Australia and the United States is unique in its breadth, depth and length, and is characterised by genuine cultural affinity and a spirit of collaboration.
The two countries’ contemporary relationship encompasses many shared fields of endeavour; including defence and security cooperation, extensive trade and investment links creating jobs for Australians and Americans, cultural exchanges, sporting rivalry, education participation, research and development, and tourism.
There is no doubt that the mateship between Australia and the United States will further develop and strengthen over the next hundred years.
Key highlights of the AU-US relationship:
- Over 10,000 Australian companies sell to or operate in the United States
- Australian companies employ an estimated 180,000 people in the United States
- Australian companies invested an estimated US $20.9 billion on new capital projects in the US between January 2003 and February 2017
- Over 1.3 million Australian tourists visit the United States each year
- Australian visitors spend over US $8.7 billion in the US, supporting thousands of jobs across all 50 states
- Australia has around 500 defence personnel and their families posted in the United States
- Australia’s defence presence in the US is spread across over 30 states
- Our 75 year old intelligence sharing relationship has helped make both our countries safer and more secure.
- Australia produces almost 4% of new knowledge to the world, with only 0.3% of the population
- Nearly 40,000 joint scientific publications between AU and the US between 2010-14
- The US is Australia’s largest research collaborator
- Australia is the seventh most popular study abroad destination for US students
- The US is one of the most popular outbound destinations for Australian students
- Australian athletes are increasingly making their presence felt across professional sports leagues in the United States – most notably the NBA and NFL – as well as in college sports
- Australia has a strong track record of hosting major sporting events including: 2000 Olympics, the Rugby World Cup, the ICC Cricket World Cup, the Asian Football Cup and Netball World Cup
- Australia is a crucial partner to the United States’ space program. Our facilities helped with the Apollo 11 moon landing and remain vital to space exploration today
- Today, US marines are stationed in Darwin in Australia’s north, and our servicemen and women are working together in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.