Program News

Egyptian radio show - 16th Feb 2015 - interview with Dr Mark Johnston, Australians in Egypt, both on the battlefield and in their interactions with Egyptians

Jerry Guirguis interview Dr Mark Johnston,  is one of Australia’s leading authorities on the Second World War. Author of 10 books on this topic, including Alamein: the Australian Story, with Peter Stanley and Anzacs in the Middle East: Australian soldiers, their allies and the local people in World War II.


He has visited Egypt twice on research visits, currently writing his 11th book on a company of Australian soldiers who fought in Libya, Egypt, New Guinea and Borneo in World War II.    Tonight, Mark will be speaking to us about Australians in Egypt, both on the battlefield and in their interactions with Egyptians, here on 96.5FM - the Egyptian radio show [ Monday 16th February 2015, 6:30pm Melbourne ].


I am indebted to the support of the Australian Army History Unit, especially. 

Dr Andrew Richardson
Australian Army History Unit               


Shrine of Remembrance Melbourne    


Australian War Memorial                     


                        We have the following list of guests to be interviewed over the next months;

  9th Feb 2015 - Professor Peter Stanley [ UNSW ]

16th Feb 2015 – Dr Mark Johnston

                  23rd Feb 2015 – Paul Daley

                   2nd Mar 2015 – Light Horse Museum – Nar Nar Goon Vic.

                  9th Mar 2015 - Egyptian Minister for International Cooperation

                  9th  Mar 2015 - Malek Triki [ world War one through Arabs Eyes

                16th Mar 2015 - Egypt Assistant Foreign Minister - Mohamed Khairat 

                23rd Mar 2015 - H.E. Barney Riley - New Zealand Ambassador to Egypt

                30th Mar 2015 - H.E. Dr Ralph King - Australian Ambassador to Egypt


     25th Apr 2015 - Anzac day dawn service Cairo Egypt [ Anzac-Egypt 2015 Tour attending ]



Anzac-Egypt 2015 Tour [ please contact Jerry Guirguis  [email protected]


This year, on 25ht April 21015, the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) will commemorate it’s Centenary, Anzac was a First World War army corps of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force that was formed in Egypt in 1915, our radio station [ 95.5FM – Egyptian radio show, Melbourne Australia, English Edition ] have been covering the Anzac Day Dawn service that's held in Cairo Egypt with our Australian Ambassador [ Dr Ralph King ] since 2013.   


This year 2015, we understand it will be New Zealand - Egypt Embassy’s turn to host the Centenary of Anzac, we are in the process of putting the final stages of our tour, to visit Egypt and attend the dawn service on 25th April 2015 [ ANZAC – Egypt 2015 tour ], held at the Cairo Commonwealth Grave Cemetery -


Fly out Saturday 18th April 2015 – leave Cairo-Egypt Friday 1st May 2015

6:30pm – Our 1st special guests tonight is Dr Mark Johnston




Hi and welcome, can we start with ......................

            Churchill: "This is not the end" (nov. 1942)                                     

                Oct 23 1942 – 12 days offensive


WW II specialist, 10+1 book on its way;


2002 Co-Authors -  Alamein :  the Australian Story (Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2002

                                Authors : Dr Peter Stanley from  [ UNSW  ] and Dr Mark Johnston


2012 – Jill Edwards - El Alamein and the Struggle for North Africa, edited by Jill Edwards, published in 2012 by the American University in Cairo Press.

                        Jill Edwards speaks about the Battle of El Alamein on the occasion of its 70th anniversary



Q1] What’s correlation between your book of 2002 and Jill’s 2012?

            It came out of a book that Mark Johnston and Peter Stanley published in 2002 – Alamein: the Australian Story (Oxford University Press, Melbourne, 2002)


Q2] When did you and Peter Visit Egypt ?

            You visited Egypt twice on research with Peter Stanley [ interviewed, just last week on 9th Feb 2015 here on 96.5FM – Egyptian radio show ].


Q3]  Anzacs in the Middle East: Australian soldiers, their allies and the local people in World War II.

            A chapter of this book is about Australians in Egypt, both on the battlefield and in their interactions with the Egyptians.

            Tell us about it ?




            Anzacs in the Middle East is a compelling exploration of the experiences of soldiers who fought in the Middle East during World War II. Spurred by a sense of        adventure and duty, they set sail to countries of   which they knew very little. The book examines the relationships between Australians and their allies and also how          they related to the local people: Greeks, Egyptians, Syrians, Lebanese and Palestinians.     Mark Johnston draws on extensive research to provide a new perspective on             the famous campaigns at Tobruk and Alamein, as well as significant but less familiar battles at Bardia, Retimo and Damascus.        Featuring first-hand accounts and            stories from the front line, the book discovers the true nature of the 'larrikin Australian' and is a must-read for anyone interested in Australia's military history. This        book is a companion volume to Mark Johnston's previous books, At the Front Line and Fighting the Enemy.



Q4] the 11th book - ?????

            The book is about a company of Australian soldiers who fought in Libya, Egypt, New Guinea and Borneo in World War II.


Nov 1914 – Australian Imperial Force, arrive in Egypt and set up camp and start their military training at Mena – Cairo

28th Jan 1915 – a skirmish/battle at Suez Canal

2nd April 1915 – another skirmish / FIRST WASSA

Anzac Cove, Turkey, April 25, 1915.
Second Wassa, Egypt, July 31, 1915.
Um Rakhum, Egypt, December 13, 1915.
Gebel Medwa, Egypt, December 25, 1915.




1916 – Sinai theatre

Halazin, Egypt, January 23, 1916.

The Jifjafa Raid, Sinai, April 10 to 14, 1916

El Qatiya, Sinai, April 23, 1916  

Romani, Sinai, August 4 to 5, 1916.

Bir el Abd, Sinai, August 9, 1916.
El Mazar, Sinai, September 17, 1916.

Maghara, October 15, 1916
El Arish, Sinai, December 20, 1916.
Magdhaba, Sinai, December 23, 1916.



1917 – Palestine theatre

Rafa, Sinai, January 9, 1917.
Baghdad, Mesopotomia, March 11, 1917.
First Gaza, Palestine, March 26 to 27, 1917.
Second Gaza, Palestine, April 19, 1917.
El Auja, Palestine, May 23, 1917

Third Ypres, Belgium, September till to November, 1917.
El Buggar Ridge, Palestine, October 27, 1917.

Beersheba, Palestine, October 31, 1917.
Khuweilfe, Palestine, November 1 to 8, 1917.

Third Gaza, Palestine, November 6, 1917 to January 2, 1918. 

Tel es Sheria, Palestine, November 7, 1917.

Huj, Palestine, November 8, 1917

Ayun Kara, Palestine, November 14, 1917.   

Amwas, Palestine, Sunday, November 18, 1917.

Bald Hill, Palestine, November 27 to December 5, 1917

El Burj, Palestine, December 1, 1917.

Balin, Harith and Kuddin, Palestine, Thursday, December 27, 1917.





1918 – Palestine/Jordon/Syria theatres

First Amman, Palestine, March 27 to 30, 1918.
Es Salt, Jordan, April 30 to May 3, 1918.
Abu Tellul, Palestine, July 14, 1918.
Megiddo, Palestine, September 19 to 21, 1918.
Nablus, Palestine, September 20, 1918.
Wady Fara, Palestine, September 21, 1918.
Second Jordan, Jordan, September 25, 1918.
Semakh, Palestine, September 25, 1918.

Jisr Benat Yakub, Palestine, September 27, 1918.

Ziza, Jordan, September 28, 1918.
Kuneitra & Sasa, Syria, September 29, 1918.
Kaukab, Syria, September 30, 1918.
Damascus, Syria, October 1, 1918.

Khan Kusseir, Syria, October 2, 1918.

Aleppo, Syria, October 26, 1918.  

Surafend, Palestine, 10 December 1918  



The Egyptian Rebellion, Egypt, 13 March to 10 April 1919 






Jerry Guirguis                                                


96.5FM – Egyptian radio show                      

0400 718 817                                         

studio : 03 9457 1718



You can listen to this interview by going to [ ]


CD copy of this interview can be requested by email to:  [ [email protected] ]


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