Chief of Navy Speeches: Naval Historical Society of Australia Website Launch


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22 February 2018

Chief of Navy Address at the Naval Historical Society of Australia Website Launch
Sydney, NSW

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen.

Good Afternoon.

I am honoured to be here today.

I would first like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we meet, the Eora people, both past and present and to acknowledge the contribution made by indigenous men and women who have contributed to the Defence of Australia in times of peace and war.

Lessons learned from past conflicts — often at great cost — need to be preserved in our history. More importantly, these lessons need to be used to stay ahead of potential adversaries in the future.

If we expect our Sailors to fight and, in some cases, die for our country, the very least we can do as a Navy and a nation is to remember them and their sacrifices.

The stories of the past can inspire current and future generations of Australian sailors to rise to any situation because they are standing on the shoulders of those who have gone before and persevered against the odds.

Our history can also help the broader community understand what the Navy has done for our nation, how Navy is currently serving the national interest, and, most importantly, what the Navy will do for Australia in the future.

It is for these reasons that I, as the patron of the Naval Historical Society of Australia, have the distinct honour of launching the Society’s new website.

This new website is an important addition to the resources already available online, to enable the public to explore and learn about more than 200 years of naval history though over 2000 articles and numerous other resources.

In particular the detailed histories of 15 historically significant sites including the island on which we gather today — the first Naval Dockyard of the Royal Australian Navy — are an outstanding addition to our understanding of the contributions that the naval enterprise has made to the economic and social development of Australia.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank the Department of Environment and Energy, and the Committee and members of the Naval Historical Society of Australia for their support in producing this website.

Your efforts in making Australia’s naval history more accessible is greatly appreciated.

Thank you.