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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume II

241 — The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom to the Prime Minister of New Zealand

26 May 1943

Your telegram of 21 May (No. 239).

The farsighted decision of the Parliament of New Zealand, given almost unanimously under your outstanding and courageous leadership, to leave the 2nd New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the Mediterranean area, has filled me and my colleagues with gratitude and admiration and will, I know, be received with lively pleasure by their comrades-in-arms in Africa. This characteristic response will have results of high importance to the common cause of the United Nations. The loyalty and courage of New Zealand, which is so dear to all of us, have never shone so brightly as in these grim years of war, especially during the last year when you have been threatened in your homeland by Japan. The (proportion ?) and greatness of your determination that your Division should continue to play its part in the liberation of Europe will only fully be seen when facts which now must be secret can be made public.

page 217

But, in the meantime, let me, while sending you my heartfelt thanks and appreciation, reaffirm the pledge I have so often given, and which I repeated in my speech to Congress, that the Mother Country will wage unflinching and relentless war against Japan, side by side with the United Nations, to our fullest capacity in accordance with the best strategic employment, while there is breath in our bodies and while blood flows in our veins.

With reference to the last paragraph of your telegram of 21 May, I am very happy to give you the assurance for which you ask.