Leslie Bull Allen: Australian Hero /// 50

Leslie Bull Allen: orphan, pig farmer, day laborer, hero.

Seventeen: that’s how many wounded and helpless men were saved from direct modern combat by Bull Allen – a man beyond measure. Bull braved dangers that actually drove him insane. The thing is: he didn’t have to do it. He volunteered to do the impossible. There are those who say heroes aren’t real; they never really existed. But today’s show proves them all wrong. Leslie Bull Allen is a real hero. Hundreds of Americans and Australians are alive today because of his actions. We can say with Faramir: “Australia must be a truly great realm where pig farmers are held in high honor.” Here is a man who braved machine gun fire and Bushido ethics to save the lives of Americans he never met before. Here is a man who bit his tongue and did his duty no matter the cost. Here is a hero.

It’s all here and it’s all for free on Battlecast – the world’s foremost podcast on war and its sociopolitical impact.

Today’s episode is a partial sequel to episode 16 on the battle of Kokoda. You can find it here.

Download episode 50: here.


After the war, Bull Allen worked as a day laborer and farmer
Bull Allen’s Silver Star
The area around Wau saw heavy fighting
As did the area around Mount Tambu


The New Guinea offensives by David Dexter. See especially volume VI.

Hell’s battlefield: the Australians in New Guinea in World War II by Phillip Bradley

All the King’s enemies: a history of the 2/5th Australian Infantry Battalion by S. Trigellis-Smith

New Guinea: The Allied jungle campaign in World War II by Jon Diamond

The Encyclopaedia of Australia’s Battles: “Battle of Wau.” by Dudley McCarthy. Edited by Chris Clark. 

The Ghost Mountain boys: Their epic march and the terrifying battle for New Guinea by James Campbell

War at the end of the world: Douglas MacArthur and the forgotten fight for New Guinea, 1942-1945 by James Duffy. 

A military history of Australia by Jeffrey Grey

A concise history of Australia by Stuart Macintyre

The Cambridge history of Japan by Peter Duus

Hirohito’s war: The Pacific War, 1941–1945 by Francis Pike

A bastard of a place: The Australians in Papua by Peter Brune

Operations of the Imperial Japanese Armed Forces in the Papua New Guinea theater during World War II by Kengoro Tanaka

The rising sun: The decline and fall of the Japanese Empire, 1936-1945 by John Toland

Into the rising sun by Patrick K. O’donnell

To Salamaua by Phillip Bradley

John Moremon, ‘Allen, Leslie Charles (Clarence) (1916–1982)’, Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/allen-leslie-charles-clarence-12130/text21731, published first in hardcopy 2007.

The Herald Sun. “Obituaries: Jean Elizabeth Allen.” April 16, 2008.

“Bull Allen” https://cv.vic.gov.au/stories/a-diverse-state/bull-allen/ 

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