Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Anderton address at Malone Wartime Papers launch

Hon Jim Anderton Progressive leader

5.45 PM Monday, National Library, Wellington


This year, as every year, a large crowd gathered at ANZAC Cove to remember what was done there by New Zealanders and Australians.

The crowds are specially large for the major anniversaries.

In this year's service, there was stillness and not a few tears as the crowd was read a short letter written by Colonel Malone to his wife:

My Sweetheart

In less than two hours we move off to a valley, where we will be up all night and tomorrow in readiness for a big attack which will start from tomorrow night.

Everything promises well and victory should rest with us.

God grant it so and that our casualties will not be too heavy.

I expect to go through all right but my dear wife if anything untoward happens to me there are our dear children to be brought up.

You know how I love and have loved you, and we have had many years of great happiness together. If at anytime in the past I seemed absorbed in "affairs", it was that I might make proper provision for you and the children. That was due from me.

It is true perhaps that I overdid it somewhat. I believe now that I did, but did not see it at the time. I regret very much now that it was so and that I lost more happiness than I need have done.

You must forgive me; forgive also anything unkindly or hard that I may have said or done in the past.

I have made a will and it is in the office in Stratford. I think it was justly drawn. Anyway I intended it so to be.

I hope and think that the provision for you and the children will keep you and them in ease and comfort. I know you will never forget or let the dear children do so.

I am prepared for death and hope that God will have forgiven me all my sins.

My desire for life - so that I may see and be with you again - could not be greater but I have only done what every man was bound to do in our country's need.

It has been a great consolation to me that you approved my action; the sacrifice was really yours. May you be consoled and rewarded by our dear Lord.

Your loving husband

Wm G Malone

This letter expresses the dignity, simplicity and immense courage of Col. William Malone.

There, for all to see, is his toughness, his compassion, his duty and his love.

We can sense the deep and complex emotions he is feeling and the gruff attempts he had made to stifle them.

Here was a man contemplating his mortality.

And in doing so he found that the one thing that really mattered to him was his love for his family and concern for them.

The letter was dated 5 August, 1915.

Within 2 days Malone was on top of Chunuk Bair.

He must have looked down from there at the gleaming waters of the Dardenelles, the military prize the Gallipoli campaign sought.

And then within hours he was dead.

Every year now, thousands of New Zealanders make the pilgrimage to Chunuk Bair.

We stand on that same hilltop and contemplate the soldiers who died there, and on their way up to there.

We go there to honour them.

We think of the sons and brothers, fathers and husbands who were there.

We see them as New Zealanders.

And we feel the long, tight braid connecting us to them.

As the letter from Colonel Malone shows, the papers of the time bring alive to us that moment in the savage cradle of New Zealand's national identity.

Colonel Malone was a New Zealand hero.

Today, ninety years too late, we are finally recognising his heroism with a plaque at parliament.

We need our heroes.

Colonel Malone was one of New Zealand's.

I am very proud that his name is growing in stature with the passing years.

The publication of his papers will ensure his memory and the memory of the New Zealanders who served with him will continue to shape our nation's history.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>


BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>


Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>


State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>





Featured InfoPages