The Armed Forces personnel that fought in the Falkland War are often understated, suggesting they were only doing their job. I can assure you, we find your service and sacrifice in defending our country and our values truly remarkable Grahame Morris MP
Opening remarks commemorating the Falklands War 40th Anniversary, Seaham, Saturday 11 June, 2022:
Thank you to everyone for attending the 40th Remembrance Anniversary of the Falklands War.
Can I thank David McKenna for organising today’s service, Father Kennedy and the standard-bearers from the Royal British Legion and the Royal Artillery Association.
Can I give special thanks to Joe Walker, who made a remarkable film about his service in the Falklands War.
I was very moved when Joe spoke of his comrades, those he served with and those who did not return.
We are very fortunate to be joined by members of the South Atlantic Association, who have travelled from all over the country to be here today.
Liberating the Falkland Islands was a dangerous and daring mission, with 30,000 sailors, marines, soldiers, airmen and merchant mariners sent over 8,000 miles away at a moment’s notice.
We are here to commemorate and honour the great collective effort of our Armed Forces in defending the Falkland Islands as well as paying our respects to the 255 British personnel who sadly lost their lives, of whom 86 were Royal Navy, 124 Army, 27 Royal Marines, six Merchant Navy, four Royal Fleet Auxiliary and eight Hong Kong sailors.
Our support and commitment to the Falkland Islands is unequivocal
We are steadfast in our principles and upholding the right of self-determination for the Falkland Islanders, who 40 years ago had their peace and security shattered by a belligerent military junta in Argentina.
The Falklands War not only transformed our country, it did not only liberate the Falkland Islands, but four days after British Forces liberated Port Stanley, President Galtieri was forced from office, and Argentina was put on course for a return to civilian rule and the restoration of democracy.
The legacy left by the Falklands War is one of strengthening democracy, upholding international law, and protecting and expanding human rights, for the Falkland Islanders but also within South America.
A conflict between the UK and Argentina over the Falkland Islands remains, but through the service and sacrifice of our Armed Forces, you have ensured that war and conflict will never overturn diplomacy and democracy for the Falkland Islands.
The Armed Forces personnel that fought in the Falkland War are often understated, suggesting they were only doing their job.
I would like to assure those present from the South Atlantic Association here today, we find your service and sacrifice in defending our country and our values truly remarkable.
Thank you for your service to our country.”
Photographs courtesy of East Durham Veterans Trust.