The Deputy Minister of National Defense Mr. Nikolaos Hardaliasconcluding his official visit to Australia, attended today, Saturday 29 October 2022, representing the Greek Government and the Ministry of National Defence, in events to celebrate the 82nd National Anniversary of the 1940 Epic, which were held by the Greek Community of Australia in Adelaide, with the honorable presence of the Honorable Euzonon of the Presidential Guard, as below:
First, he went to the Monument to the Unknown Soldier where he attended the Memorial Mass, officiating of Theophilastos Bishop of Sinop, Mr. Siluanou and laid a wreath.
In the context of the event, Mr. Hardalias delivered the following speech:
“It is with deep respect and reverence that I stand today at the Australian War Memorial to pay tribute to the fallen of the Australian Armed Forces. May they rest in peace and may their memory forever be a shining example of the best that your nation and the Western world in general has to offer.
But I am also overcome with feelings of honor and pride. Honored because this year I had the opportunity to celebrate NO Day, one of the most important Greek national anniversaries, in a country whose brave soldiers fought alongside ours in many battles, including the Second World War. And pride, because today I see the leventas of the Presidential Guard, our Euzones, honoring, so far from home, heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice. As Thucydides also said, the grave of famous men is everywhere, and their names are not only preserved in inscriptions in their homeland, but their memory is also preserved in foreign countries, more in the memory and hearts of people than in written monuments and in the graves.
Ladies and gentlemen, the dangers and devastation of war cannot be precisely defined and should never be underestimated. However, we must recognize that in the life of nations, few international events can form such strong bonds as those forged during the common struggle in the trenches. In Athens, on the Monument to the Unknown Soldier, our national cenotaph dedicated to the anonymous Greek soldiers killed during the wars, there are engraved the words Crete, El Alamein and Korea. Bloody battlefields, where Greeks and Australians laid down their lives together, in a selfless and patriotic struggle for the high ideals of freedom, democracy and brotherhood among nations. And let us not forget the brave ANZAC warriors who served on Lemnos during the Gallipoli Campaign of 1915-16, against the authoritarian and genocidal Ottoman Empire. Through their hardships and sacrifices, they laid the foundations of today’s unshakable bonds between our nations.
Dear audience, we could talk for hours about the battles where our Armed Forces fought side by side, and still we would not have time to say even half of it. If we just take a look at the map and see the distance that separates our countries, this is really unexpected at first glance. But as we know all too well, mileage is insignificant when shared principles and values are at stake, and where there are ideals worth fighting for.
In closing, I would once again like to thank the Foundation for Hellenic Studies for hosting the Presidential Guard in Adelaide. I congratulate you on your role in the development and promotion of Greek-Australian culture and urge you to continue in the same direction.
It is with awe and respect that I stand in front of the Monument to the Unknown Soldier here in Adelaide.
Because the blood toll of Australian Heroes in the battles against totalitarianism and tyranny and in favor of Democracy and Freedom, in every corner of the planet remains special!
In Crete, in Korea, in El Alamein, Greek and Australian fighters fought side by side for the same ideals, the same principles, the same values.
Their memory is forever!
May only gratitude and respect accompany their souls and may their example be forever an absolute example of self-sacrifice and heroism.
My dear compatriots, we leave Australia today back to the Motherland full of unique, special feelings of pride for what you offer, represent here, 13,500 kilometers away.
Thank you! We thank you! See you soon!
Long live Greece!
Long live Australia!”
The Vice-Admiral was also present Efthymios Mikros PN Director of the Military Office of the Presidency of the Republic as representative of the Presidency of the Republic, the Minister of Infrastructure & Transport and (Minister) of Energy & Mines Mr. Tom Koutsantonisthe Minister of Arts, Consumer Affairs & Entrepreneurship, Small & Family Businesses, etc. Andrea MichaelsMr. Pedrick Adrian as a representative of the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Federal Member of Parliament Mr. Steve Georganas, the State Members of Parliament etc. Connie Bonaros, Irene Pnevmatikos, Olivia Savvas and David Pisanithe Consul General of Greece in Adelaide Mr. George Psiachasthe Greek Adjutant Defense Colonel Ioannis Fasianosthe President of the Hellenic Foundation and former Minister of Education of South Australia Mr. Greg Crafter, the President of Multicultural Affairs mr. Andriana Christopoulos, Presidents and representatives of Homogeneous Associations and Schools, as well as Greeks of the Diaspora.
Then, in view of the official event for the 200th anniversary of the birth of Georgios Tramundanas (George Tramountanas), the 180 years since his arrival in South Australia as the first Greek Homogeneus, as well as the unveiling of his bust and that of his wife Lydia, the Deputy Minister of National Defense visited the Migration Museum. George Tramoudanas was born in Lemnos in 1822, from where he immigrated with his brother Theodoros to South Australia 180 years ago, in 1842. He lived, worked and raised his family with the English woman Lydia Vosper based in South Australia. He died at the age of 89 in 1911.
Afterwards, Mr. Hardalias toured the Museum premises, where important exhibits highlighting immigration to South Australia from countries all over the world are hosted.
Also present were the Consul General of Greece in Adelaide, Mr. Georgios Psiachas, the Greek Adjutant of Defense Colonel Ioannis Fasianos, the President of the Historical Association of South Australia, Ms. Elisabeth Ho and the President of the company “Tramountana North Association” and descendant of the first immigrant Georgios Tramountana, Mr. Ray North.
First Appeared at: defence247.gr