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The trenches are packed with debris, like the Gully. The same awful stench
pervades everything, and the flies swarm in millions. In one corner seven
Turks, with their rifles across their knees, are sitting together. One man
has his arm round the neck of his friend and a smile on his face, as if they
had been cracking a joke when death overwhelmed them. All now have the
appearance of being merely asleep, for of the seven I only see one who shows
any outward injury.
"The uncensored Dardanelles", (London 1928), Ellis Ashmead-Bartlett, p. 143.
The loss of five lines of trenches on Gully Spur stung them (*) into a series of desperate counter-attacks in the Gully Ravine area, and between June 28th and July 5th they suffered the staggering number of over 16.000 casualties. Hamilton refused a Turk request for an armistice to bury their dead, as the local commanders considered that the Turks were more worried by the effect on the morale of their troops attacking over the bodies of their comrades then by any humanitarian considerations. Over 10.000 Turks had been killed in the area, and nothing at Anzac compared with the dreadful scenes on either side of Gully Ravine. In the 1960’s the piles of grinning skulls are everywhere to be found on the Spur and in the Ravine; in the scrub one only has to kick the ground
to send a cloud of bones scuffling through the dust. "the mangled
bodies of the dead, unburied, half-buried, or partially dug up by shells, under
the fierce heat, with loathsome clouds of flies, could only be dealt with by
fire", a chaplain attached to the 52nd division has written. The valley with its
heaps of rotting refuse, its burning pyres and sickening stench, was a
“Gallipoli”, Robert Rhodes James, p. 230-231
(*) the Turks
Last updated : 20/08/07
"Dead Turks in trench - June 1915", picture reproduced from "The uncensored Darda-nelles", (London 1928), Ellis Ashmead - Bartlett, p. 144.