Speech to the 4th Hussars given by the Right Hon. Winston Churchill
February 1, 1943
Extract from Onwards to Victory: War Speeches of Winston Churchill
The last time I saw the 4th Hussars was during the dark days in the Western Desert. Since then there has been hard fighting for all of you. I watched on the map which the War Office makes every day for the War Cabinet your positions in that grim fighting. This Regiment was here, was there, was apparently everywhere. You were constantly in the picture.
What a change there has been in the past few months! Rommel, who was just about to advance, has been hurled back fifteen or sixteen hundred miles, and will be harried by the Eighth Army, that great Desert Army, to the end. The First Army, too, is on the other side.
I cannot doubt that within a reasonable time the whole pack of Germans and Italians will be driven into the sea, and Africa relieved. One continent will then be freed from the enemy. Egypt has been defended and secured against attack.
In all this dramatic story you have played your part, but the Germans have suffered even greater losses than those you inflicted on them in Egypt. In the recent battles in Russia we have seen how grievous those losses are, for the German army has had more maimed and killed at the hands of the Russians than they lost in the whole of the last war. The German army entered Russia already haggard and worn, and they are still suffering. They have received very grave injuries, which I daresay will prove mortal.
During my visit to North Africa I have seen those powerful armies of British and American troops. We have poured half a million men into that area. And that is not all. They will soon be turning North, across the Mediterranean, carrying the war to a tense climax.
I am glad to see so many of you carrying on the fine traditions of the Regiment, for it has many glorious traditions. Those who now have the honour to carry on have added names to those famous battles of the past. The battle honours which you have won in this war will be treasured by those of the Regiment who come after you. I give you the heartiest wishes for your future. You will not weary or falter.
From the bottom of my heart I thank you. God bless you.
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