“November 11th marks one of the most significant and solemn days in Canada. On this Remembrance Day, I join millions of Canadians in communities across the country as we honour veterans and members of the Canadian Armed Forces. It is due to the sacrifices of these brave men and women that we enjoy the freedoms we hold dear. This year is particularly significant, both because of the historic milestones reached, and recent tragic events in Ottawa and Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu.
“The year 2014 marks the centennial anniversary of the beginning of the First World War, and the seventy-fifth anniversary of the beginning of the Second World War. Tens of millions, military and civilians alike, perished in these terrible conflicts, and so we remember them.
“This year we are also commemorating the closing of a significant chapter in Canadian history. In March, we saw the return of the final Canadian Armed Forces personnel serving in Afghanistan. Canada’s mission in Afghanistan saw more than 40,000 members serve. Accordingly, the dates of mission – Afghanistan (2001–2014) – are among the new inscriptions unveiled at today’s rededication of the National War Memorial.
“Our Canadian Armed Forces remain undeterred in their mission to protect Canada and Canadians, on overseas operations – and here at home.
“This ethic of service and sacrifice continues, as today’s Canadian Armed Forces join our allies in support of the people of Iraq, in their fight against the terrorist group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, in our work in Central and Eastern Europe as part of NATO assurance measures, and in daily domestic and international work undertaken by the men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces. In honour of all our veterans, past, present and future, we give them our eternal gratitude.
“Lest we forget.”