EDITORIAL: Why the world needs the Anzac Day message as war rages in Europe

Headshot of Liam Croy
Liam CroyAlbany Advertiser
A Company 11/28th Batallion's Cpl Jeremy Cullen. 
Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser
Camera IconA Company 11/28th Batallion's Cpl Jeremy Cullen. Laurie Benson Albany Advertiser Credit: Laurie Benson/Albany Advertiser

On Anzac Day two years ago, when COVID-19 had turned our city into a ghost town, we took to our driveways and remembered those who fought for our freedom.

This year, WA is gradually emerging from the constraints of COVID — and so too are our commemorative services.

Albany’s dawn service, held under the historic Desert Mounted Corps Memorial, is a particularly moving occasion.

The memorial depicts an Australian defending a New Zealand soldier who is standing beside his wounded horse.

It is a poignant, visceral reminder of the unbreakable bonds between the two nations.

As dawn breaks, the crowd atop Mt Clarence will be asked to turn to King George Sound, where flares will be fired and wreaths dropped into the ocean.

It is a tradition that stretches back generations.

With the red flares hovering over the sound, where the Anzac convoys gathered in 1914, the presence of the Anzacs hangs heavy over our city.

So many of those who left from Albany for World War I did not make it home.

After the dawn service, thousands of people will gather in the CBD for the Anzac Day march and commemorative service at Anzac Peace Park.

This year, the crowd will observe a minute’s silence in light of the horrors unfolding in Ukraine.

Anzac Day is a sombre occasion, but it is one that serves several important purposes.

Most importantly, of course, it honours the men and women who served in our defence forces.

But it also acts as a reminder of the tragedy of war — a message the world needs right now.

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