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1991 - Mr Major’s Address to the 7th Armoured Division in Kuwait

Below is the text of Mr Major’s address to the 7th Armoured Division in Kuwait on Wednesday 6th March 1991.


PRIME MINISTER:

I must say it is jolly nice to be back and thank you very much for what you have done over the last few months, it has been an absolutely fabulous job. I do not think it could have been better done and the general impression back home, and I think it is the right impression, is that this has been one of the most remarkable military episodes ever, it has been a copy book exercise, it was brilliantly planned, it was brilliantly done and I would just like you to know how very proud at home everyone is of the way that you performed and the way you operated over the period of the last few months. Everything else for months has been pretty much wiped off the media and wiped off the press. There are 56 million people back home, all of whom are thorough experts in the Gulf war, all of whom know intimately what you have been doing and I can promise you every single one of them is very proud of what you have done and I am very grateful to you for doing it.

Let me just pass on two or three bits of information you just may vaguely be interested in. The first is we will not keep you out here a day longer than we have to, the sooner we can get you back home we will do so, I cannot tell you precisely when that will be, but I do give you my word there will be no undue delay about it. The second thing which will be of no interest to you whatsoever I know is there will be some leave when you get back home, though what you will do after you have had so long in the sun out here I cannot myself immediately imagine. The other piece of news I think you may be interested in, though from the media's point of view it is not to be reported just yet and I hope they will respect that, is that we will get a number of our prisoners of war back sometime later on today and that is all going extremely well.

So I just really want to say in conclusion, for I would like to stop and have a chat rather than make speeches at you, that it has been a most remarkable exercise, everybody is thrilled with it, I am delighted to be here and saying that to you and I hope when we get home I will have another chance to see you all there.

Thank you all very much indeed.