Thousands pay tribute on ANZAC Day around the country

Thousands pay tribute on ANZAC Day around the country

Venkat Raman

Auckland, April 25, 2019

Anzac Service in Wellington this morning (RNZ Photo by Ana Tovey)

Thousands of New Zealanders have been paying tribute to the brave soldiers who fought and perished at Gallipoli during the First World War.

New Zealanders remember New Zealand and Australian soldiers who have sacrificed, sometimes with their lives, in war and serves as a reminder of the tragedy of such conflict.

It is the 104th Anniversary of the Gallipoli landings during the First World War.

ANZAC 2018 marked a number of battles on the Western Front culminating in the Armistice which was signed in November 1918.

There were 30,000 New Zealanders who died in both world wars.

Subdued Ceremonies

ANZAC Services are another victim of the terrorist attack in Christchurch on March 15, 2019.

Returned and Services Association (RSA) had announced that two-thirds of Anzac Day services have been canned and that there would be only 26 services across the region, down from 84 in 2018.

Decisions to cancel or consolidate services had been made following discussions with the police and the RSA.

Day of Significance

Anzac Day is a national day of remembrance in New Zealand and Australia that commemorates all Australians and New Zealanders who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations to protect us and our country.

The word ‘Anzac’ is a part of the culture of New Zealanders and Australians.

When Britain declared war on Germany on August 4, 1914, it was committing not only its own men, but those of its Empire.

The five ‘Dominions,’ namely, Australia, Canada, Newfoundland (which joined with Canada in 1949), New Zealand and South Africa, were self-governing but had no power over foreign policy. Most entered the war willingly, proud to go to the aid of the empire, often pictured as a lion with its cubs.

But as the war dragged on and their young men died in droves, they pressed for more say in its conduct and, after it ended, more control over their destinies. The men who came home often found that fighting for Britain had, paradoxically, made them feel more distant from it. A century later, many historians see the first world war as the former dominions’ ‘War of Independence.”

As former MP Peter Dunne wrote, “In the wake of another ANZAC Day and the rekindling of national spirit it always engenders, it is timely to consider our current relationships with those whom we have joined historically in the struggle for what we now routinely describe as the liberties and freedoms we enjoy today.

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