Walt Secord backs posthumous promotion of Sir John Monash to Field Marshal

October 20, 2019 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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NSW Shadow Treasurer and NSW Parliamentary Friends of Israel deputy chair Walt Secord has thrown his support behind a plan to posthumously elevate Sir John Monash to Field Marshal.

Sir John Monash

Walt Secord was speaking in a condolence motion in the NSW Parliament on Former Deputy Prime Minister Tim Fischer, who died on August 22 at the age of 73.

Sir John Monash died in October 1931 in Melbourne.

Mr Fischer had been at the forefront of the push to recognise Sir John Monash.

A number of other prominent Australians have supported the call for the elevation of Sir John Monash including then-Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten. In 2018, then-Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull formally rejected the suggestion when proposed by Mr Fischer.

Mr Secord said that Mr Fischer had “an encyclopedic knowledge of Australia at war and was at the forefront of the push to give the appropriate recognition to Sir John Monash, arguably Australia’s greatest soldier and a prominent member of the Melbourne Jewish community.”

Walt Secord

“Monash is considered to be one of the best Allied generals of the First World War. Sir John Monash rose to the rank of lieutenant general by the end of World War I and was knighted in August 1918 by King George V outside Villers Bretonneux, a village in western France. He was the last person to be knighted on the battlefield. Despite the royal acclamation, some of Sir John Monash’s relatives and his historical champions believe he was denied greater military recognition to field marshal because of powerful and influential people, including the then Prime Minister Billy Hughes. Sir John Monash’s biographers also contend that his Jewish origins were counted against him,” Mr Secord told State Parliament.

“Regardless of the reasons for Sir John Monash not receiving the recognition he deserved during his lifetime, Tim Fischer was part of the move to have him posthumously promoted to the supreme army rank of field marshal. As the Deputy Chair of the NSW Parliamentary Friends of Israel, I lend my support to the calls by Tim Fischer and others to posthumously and properly recognise Sir John Monash.”

Comments

2 Responses to “Walt Secord backs posthumous promotion of Sir John Monash to Field Marshal”
  1. Adrian Jackson says:

    Ridiculous proposal by Mr Scord and is he slow on the uptake as the Defence Department has said quite rightly no more posthumous promotion will occur after the late Tim Fischer’s campaign failed. I will explain how the army ranks system work here too.

    Monash, as well as Chauvel, were promoted to Lt Gen during WW1, which is corps commander rank, and both knighted too.

    Monash was promoted, as a civilian, to general in the late 1920’s at the instance of Chauvel when PM Scullin was to promote Chauvel as he was still active in the Army and chief of the Australian peace time forces. Both were promoted to General because of Chauvel intervention.

    A Maj Gen commands a division (9 infantry battalions plus other arms and services) while a Lt Gen commands a Corps (3 division usually). Chauvel commanded the Desert Mounted Corps in Palestine and Syria while Monash commanded the Australian Corps near the end of WW1 in France/Belgium.

    Chauvel was promoted first to Lt Gen rank and the first Australian to command a Corps too but I don’t hear called to promote him to FM.

    A General commands an Army (3 Corps or 9 divisions)) and not even Monash’s larger Australian Corp of 5 divisions was the size of an Army. As for field marshal rank a FM commands a number of armies and only nations like Germany, Russia, Britain, France and USA had forces that large in WW1.

  2. ben gershon says:

    His record is his legacy.

    It speaks for all time .nothing else is needed

    ben

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