War correspondents honoured in new memorial

The Australian War Memorial today unveiled a new memorial to war correspondents.

The launch coincided with the 100th Anniversary of Keith Murdoch’s ‘Gallipoli letter’ to the then Australian Prime Minister Andrew Fisher, for the first time letting the Australian public know about what was truly going on in that disastrous campaign.

Unveiling the memorial, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said:

“The greatest role of war correspondents, indeed of all journalists, is to stand up to the powerful – to hold up the truth to power.

“It is often said that in war the first casualty is the truth and it is the war correspondents that have to tell the truth, often in the face of considerable criticism.

“It takes courage for any journalist, for any correspondent, to stand up to big businesses, to vested interests, to governments and never more so in a time of war, when all of the arguments of patriotism can be levelled, inveighed against a journalist who seeks to tell the truth.

“Our democracy depends not just on the politicians, not just on the judges, it depends on the armed services defending our freedoms but it depends vitally on a free press; on a free and courageous press; on free and courageous correspondents who are not cowed by governments and by big vested interests.”

Listen to The World Today’s report on the memorial here.

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