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In 1941, Australian and Allied forces sought to defend Egypt and the Suez Canal from the German and Italian Axis forces. To achieve this, it was vital that the Allies hold the fortified port of Tobruk on the Libyan coast.

British and Commonwealth forces successfully captured the Tobruk fortress and held it against besieging Axis troops for eight months. With the Allies’ extensive network of trenches and underground tunnels, Nazi propagandist William Joyce tried to discredit them by labelling them as the’ Rats of Tobruk.’ This nickname was reclaimed by the defending soldiers who wore the name with pride.  

2015 Australians At War - Tobruk 50c Uncirculated

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The Australia at War series features 18 coins that reflect the nation’s pride in our brave servicemen and women.

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In 1941, Australian and Allied forces sought to defend Egypt and the Suez Canal from the German and Italian Axis forces. To achieve this, it was vital that the Allies hold the fortified port of Tobruk on the Libyan coast.

British and Commonwealth forces successfully captured the Tobruk fortress and held it against besieging Axis troops for eight months. With the Allies’ extensive network of trenches and underground tunnels, Nazi propagandist William Joyce tried to discredit them by labelling them as the’ Rats of Tobruk.’ This nickname was reclaimed by the defending soldiers who wore the name with pride.