Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
A time to remember: a message from John Forrest, Member for Mallee.

Download PDFDownload PDF

John Forrest MP The Nationals Member for Mallee

Phone (03) 5021 5987 Fax (03) 5023 3274

Thursday, 30 October 2008

A TIME TO REMEMBER - A message from John Forrest, Member for Mallee.

November 11, is an opportunity for all Australians to acknowledge that the wonderful democracy we have, which is the envy of the world, has not come cheaply.

Remembrance Day was first known as Armistice Day when, at 11am on 11, November 1918, the guns of the Western Front fell silent after more than four years of war.

This day reminds us of a conflict which saw huge numbers of our sons and daughters pay the ultimate sacrifice.

The sad reflection is that within a generation, the world was at it again. It is therefore vital for new generations to never forget.

We, as Australians, have always been prepared to defend the principles of which we are proud. These are liberty, freedom of speech and compliance with the rule of law. Remembering spurs us on, as individuals, to do what we can to have a peaceful world for us all to live in.

On Armistice Day in 1918, the German invaders, having suffered heavy defeats, accepted the allied terms of unconditional surrender.

This first modern world conflict, 90 years ago, had brought about the mobilisation of over 70 million people and left 9 million to13 million dead, perhaps as many as one-third of them with no known grave.

The two minutes silence observed by millions of Australians on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month each year, attained even greater significance at the end of the Second World War. It was then the Australian and British governments agreed to change the name to Remembrance Day because Armistice Day was no longer an appropriate title for a day which would commemorate all our war dead to the present day.

This year also marks the finding of HMAS Sydney, sunk with the loss of all 645 crew off the Western Australian coast on November 19, 1941.

We observe this day with reverence. Lest we forget.

Mr Forrest can be contacted on 0428 500 186.