Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Dunne Speaks - Anzac Day

Dunne Speaks - Anzac Day

24 April 2014

Tomorrow morning, rain or shine, thousands of New Zealanders will gather at dawn and throughout the morning to commemorate the disastrous Allied landings at ANZAC Cove, on the Gallipoli Peninsula, nearly 100 years ago.

They will do so not to recognise an outstanding victory – because it was most obviously not that – nor to glorify the abysmal tragedy that is war, but to acknowledge humble service and dedication, at ANZAC Cove, and through a near century of subsequent efforts, military and non-military, of generations of Defence Forces.

For some, there will be a family connection – maybe a parent, but increasingly more likely a grandparent, or great grandparent, who was there that morning. For others, it will be an occasion to commemorate the service of those in World War 11, Korea, Malaya, Vietnam, or more recently Afghanistan.

But for many, ANZAC Day will be about none of these. It may not even be about recognising the service of any loved one in the defence of New Zealand. Yet they will be there, dignified, sombre and respectful because ANZAC Day has transcended from commemoration of a particular event, as important and symbolic as that of itself properly is, to an occasion for all of us to remember and reflect the notion of service and our national commitment to freedom. That is what brings New Zealanders of all ages and backgrounds together on this special day, and is why what we loftily describe as the ANZAC Spirit (I doubt there was ever such a thing on the Peninsula on those awful days in 1915 where grim survival would have been the primary objective) will prevail.

As specific memories and connections inevitably fade, ANZAC Day around the world seems to prosper. The romanticised notion of the hell that was Gallipoli has forged a strong enduring streak within New Zealanders and Australians of determination, raw courage, stoicism in the face of adversity, and service to colleagues and country that has shaped the character of our two nations ever since.

That is the lasting significance of ANZAC Day and why it will flourish into the future. But establishing the template for the building of a nation a century later, would have been the last thing on the minds of those young, innocent and terrified soldiers as they tried to storm those inhospitable cliffs on that grey morning 99 years ago. They were focused simply on doing the immediate job in front of them, nothing more or less, certainly with no sense of greatness in mind, but just getting on with it, as anyone around them would. That is why they are such special heroes and their legacy a proud one for us to embrace.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Housing Issues: Homelessness On The Horizon For Baby Boomers

Baby Boomers who have held down jobs and contributed to the well-being of New Zealand through their taxes may yet become homeless in late middle age or early retirement without urgent Government action, says The Salvation Army. More>>


Treasury Has Doubts On Christchurch Rebuild And... Auditor-General Follows Up On EQC

Despite the improvements made, EQC could still learn better from complaints and improve its customer focus and interactions... Although the programme is nearing completion, EQC needs to provide the best service possible for the home owners whose homes are still to be repaired. More>>


Man Who Banned 'Into The River' Out The Door: Appointments To The Film And Literature Board Of Review

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne has announced seven appointments to the Film and Literature Board of Review... “The new members of the Board... will provide a strong mix of skills and experience to help the Board carry out its functions, while representing a cross-section of society.” More>>


Climate Marches: New Zealanders March For Solutions Not Pollution

Ahead of the UN Climate Summit in Paris more than 15,000 New Zealanders have taken part in the Peoples Climate march in Auckland, kicking off the largest climate mobilisation the world has ever seen... More>>


Labour: Little Announces New Shadow Cabinet

“Labour had an impressive intake of fresh faces after last year’s election and newest MPs have now had a year to show what they’re made of. This reshuffle rewards hard work and continues my drive to renew our Caucus line up." More>>


Because Reasons: Someone Reckons David Seymour Is Politician Of The Year

Trans Tasman's 11th annual Roll Call has thrown a curve ball this year, ignoring the likes of John Key, Bill English, and Winston Peters to pick its politician of the year from the ranks of the new generation. More>>


Whaling: NZ Deeply Disappointed By Japan's Decision

“New Zealand is strongly opposed to whaling in the Southern Ocean. We call on Japan to take heed of the 2014 International Court of Justice decision and international scientific advice concerning their whaling activities.” More>>


Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news