One Hundred Years Since WW1 Armistice

One Hundred Years Since WW1 Armistice

PM&C
Friday, 09 November 2018

Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

Poster featuring three men in military uniform and one woman in nursing uniform below which is a poppy the words Remembrance Day 11 November 2018.

Sunday 11 November marks 100 years since the ‘guns fell silent’, bringing to an end the First World War (1914-18).

After years of warfare, and with their armies about to collapse, the German leaders signed an armistice.

‘In the four years of the war more than 330,000 Australians had served overseas, and more than 60,000 of them had died. The social effects of these losses cast a long shadow over the post-war decades.’

On 13 November 1918, acting Prime Minister and Treasurer Mr Watt addressed the House of Representatives. He read his response to a letter received from King George V. It included the following:

‘In this hour of our greatest triumph we earnestly desire, above all else, to associate ourselves with Your Majesty in the sacred duty of paying homage to the memory of our dead heroes, who laid down their lives in the cause of humanity.’

On the eve of the Centenary of Armistice (10 November), a light beam will be projected from the Australian War Memorial’s parapet to Parliament House of Australia in Canberra.

The beam of light represents the connection between the political freedoms Australians enjoy through parliamentary democracy and ‘those who serve and protect these freedoms in war and peacekeeping operations in our region and around the world.’

On 11 November each year, Australians are invited to observe one minute of silence at 11am and remember ‘those who have died or suffered in all wars and armed conflicts’.

In addition, ceremonies will be held across Australia with crowds gathering at state and territory war memorials, in Returned Serviceman League halls and at cenotaphs in regional towns and rural communities.

Such annual gatherings and ceremonies are needed, ‘Lest We Forget’.

Read more about Remembrance Day and the Centenary of Armistice at the Australian War Memorial website.