Anzac Day commemorations in France
25 April 2018
Anzac Day 2018 marks 100 years since the battle widely regarded as the turning point of World War One.
The Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin, delivered the Call to Remembrance during the Dawn Service at the Australian National Memorial which now stands on the site of the Second Battle of Villers Bretonneux.
“The Allies feared 1918 would bring defeat but as Anzac Day dawned, the decisive actions of the Australian 13 and 15 Brigades had surrounded the village of Villers Bretonneux bringing news of a stunning victory that effectively ended the German spring offensive,” Air Chief Marshal Binskin said.
Later today, the Chief of the Defence Force will recite the Ode on behalf of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) at Bullecourt before addressing the Australian service at the Digger Memorial where he will remember the significant losses suffered by the Australian Imperial Force (AIF).
“As the months stretched into years, the platoon mates became family and the loss of comrades was deeply felt.
“Sadly, another 10,000 Australian lives were lost between April 1918 and the Armistice in November that year. Despite the heavy toll, those months were an enormous source of pride for the Australians who played an important role in the Allied victory.”
With more than 2,300 ADF personnel deployed on operations today, the traditional Dawn Service was repeated at day break around the world including the Middle East region and historic sites throughout Europe.
In the final year of the Anzac Centenary commemorations, Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin said our current service men and women know the true meaning of Anzac Day.
“For many, it is a time for solemn reflection on the sacrifices of all those who went before them. For others, it is an opportunity to remember mates lost in service to our nation.”
Imagery will be available at https://images.defence.gov.au/S20180800
Defence Media (02) 6127 1999, media [at] defence.gov.au