How motivated were the Australian, Canadian and NZ soldiers in the British army during the two world wars? Did they feel that their homeland was under threat or did they have problem understanding why they were fighting a war oceans away?

There must also have been some people with German ancestry or ethnicity that could be conscripted, what happened to them?

  • 2
    As written, this is going to be difficult to give a concise answer to. Motivation isn't something that is measureable and not every soldier will have the same level of motivation (or lack of) as his comrades. The situation was also different in WW2 as the named countries all faced a more direct threat from Japan.
    – Steve Bird
    Jan 7, 2019 at 10:13
  • 3
    I know there was a fair bit of consternation in Australia, particularly after Japan declared war and moved into the neighboring islands, while the bulk of their own fighting men were stuck in North Africa. Canada, OTOH, probably never felt personally endangered, owing to their status as "America's Hat".
    – T.E.D.
    Jan 7, 2019 at 14:38
  • Are you asking about the motivations of Canadian, Australian and New Zealand soldiers in the British Army in WWII or the motivations of Canadian, Australin, and New Zealand soldiers in the Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand armies during WWII?,
    – MAGolding
    Jan 7, 2019 at 19:58
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    As so often I think critics who would close this question could be more flexible and allow answers from which readers could learn something even if the question is large one. At that date many Australians, Canadians and New Zealanders were immigrants born in Britain and probably still felt partly British. Australian historian LA Carlyon said in his book 'Gallipoli' that about a third of 'Australian' troops in that campaign had been born in Britain. Even second or third generation immigrants could see being both 'Australian' or 'Canadian' and 'British' as compatible.
    – Timothy
    Jan 10, 2019 at 21:48
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    Further to my comment above, Australian, Canadian & New Zealand troops frequently performed so well in many theatres of the Wars (the Canadians capturing Vimy Ridge in the First World War as one example) that it is hard to believe that they were not committed to fight on the side of Britain. That is not the whole story, there were tensions and the 'Dominions' as they were called were in the process of becoming fully separate nations, but except for e.g. some Irish and German immigrants in those countries most accepted it as natural that their armies served as part of the British Empire forces
    – Timothy
    Jan 10, 2019 at 22:01