I have been too busy this weekend to gather thoughts or links in memory of My Friends Down Under. Though tardy, it is with heartfelt, enduring gratitude that I post a few links in their honour.
Kae’s Bloodnut Blog:
They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
Brian and Bobbie:
It is recorded that just before the first troops landed that day, they stood with heads uncovered and bowed while a prayer was offered over them, for victory and for Divine blessing. As I was reflecting on this, I came across an article which said “But ANZAC stood, and still stands for reckless valour in a good cause, for enterprise, resourcefulness, fidelity, comradeship and endurance that will never own defeat.”
Reckless valour in a good cause. That’s not a foolhardy valour but a boldness in the face of the enemy which takes no account of personal cost. It is unconcerned about consequence but courageous, daring, and heroic – victory at any cost.
Andrew Bolt, in the update:
I just got home from my annual pilgrimage to the ANZAC day dawn service at Hellfire Pass in Kanchanaburi province in Thailand. There was a remarkably large turn out of Aussies there this year in view of the troubles in Thailand right now.
As usual, museum curator Bill Slaype and his Thai team did a magnificent job of organising the event.
I arrived at 4.30 am and the cutting was already crowded with Australians of all ages. 5 POW’s were present this year, including the indomitable West Australian Bill Haskell. The forest steps and paths leading down from the magnificent museum in to the pass, was lit by bamboo oil lamps in the trees. Every one present was given a candle in a bamboo candle holder which adds to the poignancy of the occasion.
It serves to remind all that what we do is dangerous on a good day and we didn’t stop doing it after Gallipoli. There is always media comments to effect that the old soldiers are dying off and this will eventually reduce ANZAC Day attendances. In reality the numbers continue ton increase both in New Zealand and Australia because we remain active in armed conflicts and will continue to do so. We are not just remembering those who died in the two media approved wars, but in all wars and even in “peace time”.
Thank you, God, for allowing us such Men as these. We will NOT forget.