Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Declaration of World War One was birth of nation

RSA National Media Release
30 July 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Declaration of World War One was birth of nation

On 4 August 2014, New Zealand will commemorate the centenary of Great Britain’s declaration of war on Germany and the beginning of New Zealand’s involvement in World War One.

RSA National President, Don McIver, says that 100 years ago few New Zealanders could have imagined the magnitude of the trauma to come, or the lasting impact it would have on our nation.

“103,000 New Zealand men and women served overseas during WWI. Many who volunteered when the war was first declared, believed they were about to embark on a great adventure and told their loved ones they’d be home by Christmas,” Mr McIver says.

“Four years later, by the close of the war, more than 18,000 New Zealanders had fallen and we had lost 5% of our men of military age. Many of those who returned had trouble reintegrating back into society after the horrors of war. The price of international peace and security was massive for a small and pioneering country such as we were then.”

Britain’s declaration of war marks not only the beginning of New Zealand’s involvement in WWI as part of the British Empire, but also the birth of New Zealand as a nation.

“Our national identity is built upon our military heritage. For the first time in our history we travelled en masse through foreign lands, interacting with men and women of different nations under the immense pressure of war. We were tested and we discovered the bonds that make us unique. New Zealand gained a sense of self,” says Mr McIver.

“Today the RSA champions the values that held us together during war and built our society after. Compassion, comradeship, courage and commitment are the Anzac values that we as Kiwis continue to identify with.”

RSAs across the country are working with their communities on a wide range of local events and services to commemorate the outbreak of WWI, from re-enactments of troops leaving for the war in Wairarapa and Nelson, to an exhibition of over 5,000 memorabilia items donated by Rangiora RSA to their local museum.

Mr McIver believes it’s fitting that people draw together to remember their local stories of bravery and sacrifice in the ways which are most meaningful to them.

“The RSA feels honoured to help communities and families pay tribute to those that put their lives at risk safeguarding and protecting our freedom.”

In the first national service of the WWI centenary period, Mr McIver will recite The Ode at a ceremony held on Parliament Grounds, where the announcement of the declaration of war was made to a crowd of over 10,000 New Zealanders in 1914.

“The simple words of The Ode continue to stir emotions and reinforce to all that the sacrifices our men and women made will not be forgotten. We will remember them.”

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

RLWC 2017 Draw: New Zealand Set For A Festival Of Rugby League

New Zealand Rugby League fans will have the chance to see the Kiwis in action against the best in the Pacific region for the Rugby League World Cup 2017, as announced today at the Official Tournament Draw. More>>

ALSO:

Non-Pokemon News: Magical Park A Safer Augmented Reality For Younger Audiences

Since May, Wellington City Council has been trialling a new app, Magical Park, in collaboration with the game’s New Zealand developer Geo AR Games, in parks around the city. Magical Park uses GPS technology to get users moving around the park to play within a set boundary. More>>

'Erroneous': Pokemon App Makers On Huge Privacy Flaw

We recently discovered that the Pokémon Go account creation process on iOS erroneously requests full access permission for the user's Google account... More>>

ALSO:

Te Wiki O Te Reo: Te Reo Māori Is For All New Zealanders — Minister

Minister for Māori Development Te Ururoa Flavell welcomes the start of Māori Language Week today and invites all New Zealanders to give speaking te reo Māori a go. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news