John Curtin

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John Joseph Curtin (8 January 18855 July 1945), Australian politician and 14th Prime Minister of Australia, led Australia when the Australian mainland came under direct military threat during the Japanese advance in World War II. He is widely regarded as one of the country's greatest Prime Ministers.

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  • Be assured of the calibre of our national character. This war may see the end of much that we have painfully and slowly built in our 150 years of existence. But even though all of it go, there will still be Australians fighting on Australian soil until the turning point be reached, and we will advance over blackened ruins, through blasted and fire-swepted cities, across scorched plains, until we drive the enemy into the sea.
  • Captaining the government of a nation is a bit more exacting than captain of a football team. I know for I've done both.
  • If I liken the Pacific War to a football match, I can say to you that the first half is over, we have kicked off after the interval, and we are going to carry the ball into enemy territory for a smashing victory.
  • This country shall remain forever the home of the descendants of those people who came here in peace in order to establish in the South Seas an outpost of the British race.
  • We Australians have imperishable traditions. We shall maintain them. We shall vindicate them. We shall hold this country and keep it as a citadel for the British-speaking race and as a place where civilization will persist.
  • We cannot measure the cost of this terrible war in money and material things. I doubt if there can be any spiritual assessment of the loss.

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