Message from Minister for Veteran’s Affairs Warren Snowdon
Australians will once again pause on April 25 and reflect on almost a century since thousands of young Australian and New Zealand soldiers landed under heavy gunfire on a remote beach on the Gallipoli Peninsula. That day those men forged the ANZAC legend, one that will be forever written into our nation’s history, Each year, for almost 100 years now, we have honoured their courage and sacrifice, all Australians pay their respect to those 8,700 brave soldiers who died during the Gallipoli campaign, and the more than 102,000 Australians who have died in the service of their country. Across Australia this Anzac Day, people will stop in silence and think back to the landing at Anzac Cove, and all those who died in the First World War and reflect on what it means to them. They will also think on our history of military service, they will look up at those names on a town cenotaph or a roll of honour, and give quiet thanks for the sacrifices made in the past to deliver us the free Australia which we love today. Thanks will also be offered up to those who took on the duty of defending our nation and returned home. We recognise the service and sacrifice of our war veterans, putting their lives on the line and enduring everything war threw at them. To those who bear the physical and mental scars of war we will be forever grateful. It is clear to me that our Anzac tradition is as important now as it was in the days when it was forged. It is the spirit of Anzac which has been handed down to our current ser ving Defence Force members, our men and women in uniform work day-in day-out to uphold those traditions.
Mateship, courage and duty are each an impor tant par t of the Anzac Spirit and I have seen these first hand in the actions and dedication shown by our ser ving ADF members, whether deployed into conf lict zones overseas, or working in disaster areas within Australia, to those who turn out
before sunrise each Anzac Day to pay tribute to their forebears. I encourage all Australians to reflect and remember this Anzac Day on the sacrifices made in the past and those still being made today. Lest We Forget.
ANZAC CENTENARY GOES FAR BEYOND ANZAC DAY From 2014 to 2018 Australia will commemorate the Anzac Centenary – 100 years since our nation’s involvement in the First World War. During this time we will remember not only the Anzacs who served at Gallipoli and the Western Front, but all Australian servicemen and women who have served in wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations. The Anzac Centenary is about respectfully honouring all men and women of the Australian Defence Force – past and present – while creating a lasting legacy for all Australians. The Anzac Centenary is a program of national significance and at the first meeting of the Anzac Centenary Advisory Board on 14 October 2011, the Board resolved that a motif for the Anzac Centenary should be developed for consideration by Government. The Board is comprised of eminent Australians, including business and community leaders and chaired by Air Chief Marshal Angus Houston, AC, AFC (Ret’d) – former Chief of the Defence Force.
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The development of a motif was also proposed by the National Commission on the Commemoration of the Anzac Centenary, which included former Prime Ministers the Right Honourable Malcolm Fraser, PC, AC, CH and the Honourable Bob Hawke, AC. In its report to Government the Commission recommended “…an instantly recognisable motif…that conveys an overall theme should be attached to the centenary program.” Highly-regarded motifs have been developed for similar programs such as the 1995 commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the end of the Second World War Australia Remembers. Any motif representing the commemorative period needs to have wide resonance, be readily understood by a broad cross section of the community and appropriately reflect the significance of the Centenary. Consultation was held in both regional parts of the country along with capital cities, and consisted of the public, current serving personnel and veterans.
The Last Post magazine - Autumn 2012 - Anzac Day Special