Howard not attending NZ national service. 24/04/2005. ABC News Online:
The Prime Minister John Howard will attend a barbeque with Australian soldiers, rather than go to New Zealand's national service at Chunuk Bair in Gallipoli tomorrow. New Zealand's Prime Minister Helen Clark is planning to attend the Australian service on Anzac Day at Lone Pine..
Apparently Howard will be the first PM to ever miss the New Zealand ANZAC service. Personally I was under the impression that there was some kind of connection between Australia and New Zealand, perhaps that's why we call it ANZAC Day and not AAC day. Something about an Australian and New Zealand Army Corp. Something about two nations honouring the fallen in a terrible battle at Gallipoli.
Perhaps I'm making too much of it (and don't think I didn't see the potential jokes about Aussies and their barbeques...). I just think our PM should be there when New Zealand holds its service, just as the New Zealand PM will be there when Australia holds its ANZAC service. Although Gallipoli was a defining moment in Australian history, we cannot forget that it was a combined force which landed on those beaches.
Although given that a certain American fast food chain sees ANZAC Day as a chance to associate its product with decorated veterans, perhaps we have bigger problems.