Good morning to everyone on this important Australian day.
This morning I will be attending the pre-dawn breakfast as a guest of a friend who has recently returned from Afghanistan. In Afghanistan she was called upon to fire a rocket launcher (bazooka to lay people), and needed to take a loaded rifle to the toilet no matter the time of day or night. I will be accompanied by other good friends who have spent a large chunk of their working life in the army, serving for all Australians.
I will be celebrating their return with them, and thinking of the hardships that Australian soldiers have faced from the Boer War in 1899, as colonial soldiers, through to today.
I am proud that my grandfather returned safely from World War 11 after being a prisoner of war in Changi, and I am equally pleased that my generation is the first to have avoided conscription, or a national service due to the outbreak of a large scale war. Our troops serving abroad and peacekeeping operations have allowed Australians the freedom to be safe from conflicts which erupt elsewhere. For this I am truly grateful.
Thank you to all.
Enjoy the day.
The image above is one I constructed from a series of images I took at the local 2006 dawn service.