Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 20 May 1920

Mr SPEAKER (Hon W Elliot Johnson - I have pleasure in presenting the resolution as passed by the House of Representatives in similar terms to that read by the President of the Senate.

ADMIRAL GRANT.- Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, and honorable gentlemen, - On behalf of the Royal Australian Navy, and of the merchant service, I ask you to convey to the Commonwealth Parliament our great thanks for the high honour which has been conferred upon the Service, and which will be greatly appreciated by all ranks and ratings. The Navy is merelyan instrument of government for carrying out the will of the people, and the will of the people in the recent great war was the will to win. Without that magnificent spirit we could not have accomplished anything. The Commonwealth Government may rest assured that if the Royal Australian Navy is again called upon to protect the country, it will maintain the high traditions of the great Services of which it is an important and acknowledged part.

Lieut-General Sir HENRY CHAUVEL. - Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, and honorable gentlemen, - On behalf of those soldiers who served in Gallipoli, Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Mesopotamia, and on behalf of the Army Medical Corps and the Army Nursing Service who served in those theatres and in India and Salonika, and of all those Auxiliary Services and organizations which did so much for our soldiers, both at home and abroad, I thank you. I appreciate very much the resolution that has been passed by both, Houses of the Parliament.By reason of the gratitude shown by the nation, our soldiers will soon forget the hardships they have endured, but I trust they will never forget our gallant comrades who lost their lives in the cause of freedom and justice. We are most deeply grateful for the confidence you have placed in us, and for the terms in which your appreciation of our services has been expressed.

Lieut.-General Sir JOHN MONASH. - Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, and honorable gentlemen, - As representative of the Australian ImperialForce who served in the European theatre of war, I desire, through you, Mr. President, and you, Mr. Speaker, to express to your respective honorable Houses, our sincere thanks for the resolutions of 4th May and 5th May, which have just been presented to us. No greater honour can come to any man, or any body of men,. than to receive at the hands of the Parliament public recognition for services rendered to the State, and such recognition compensates for every sacrifice and every endeavour. May I be permitted on this occasion to say a word or two about thetroops which it was my privilege to lead in theWestern theatre of war during the period of their greeatest achievements? No commander in war in the whole range of history could have been better served. The Divisional Generals, the Brigadiers of Artillery and Infantry, the heads of Auxiliary Services and Departments, and the numerous Staffs rendered notable service with most wholehearted devotion. They brought to their daily tasks a fortitude, a resolution, and an industry which was always exemplary. Australia owes much to these men, in the palms of whose hands lay the national honour and prestige and the well-being of her soldiers. But all of these men will, like myself, be the first to acknowledge that the foundation of all their achievements lay in the superb spirit and performance of the troops themselves. It was the regimental officers, the noncommissioned officers, the men in the ranks - the gunner, the sapper, the airmen, the signaller, and the infantry soldier - who bore the heat and burden of the day. These men underwent untold privations and sacrifices, and won for us the battles that we planned. They have gained for themselves a place in history which none can challenge.

But there were many other workers whose efforts contributed in no small measure to the success of the troops. First and foremost, must come the splendid medical services, and the devoted men and women who staffed them. Noblaze of publicity illuminated their work, but they have nevertheless earned for themselves a crown of glory.

I am glad also that the resolutions of. your honorable Houses referred to the services and sacrifices of the people of Australia. The men and women of the Australian Imperial Force will never forget how much they owe to the generous help and support of the Australian public, or to those splendid organizations which took upon themselves the heavy task of bringing to the troops in the field and in the depots the succour, comfort, and consolation for which the Australian people had furnished the means. I allude to the AustralianRed Cross, the Australian

Comforts Fund, and the Australian Young Men's Christian Association.

On behalf of all these activities working together in France, Belgium, and England, in the common purpose of achieving final victory over our enemies, I again tender our respectful thanks to Parliament for the tribute which has been paid to them to-night.

The proceedings then terminated.

Suggest corrections