In the first decade of this century we came closer to being replaced within out homeland than we ever have before.
What has been done to us we allowed to be done. In the past, our people stood together and faced down war, plague and hardship. This time we neither stood together nor faced up the the threat before us, indeed, most of our people surrendered and laid down their children's future, their children's heritage, for temporary comfort and for fear of a word.
In the past we have always survived what our country faced, yet because this time we surrendered, for the first time in a thousand years, it is by no means certain that we will survive what has overtaken us in the last ten years.
We are a wounded people, we are an occupied people and most dangerously we are a disunited people.
Has it all been bad? For myself, this has been the first decade I spent as an orphan, and yet it was the first I spent entirely as a wife and mother, for it was only in the final years of the previous decade that I was either. Personally it was ten years which brought me unbearable grief, but also great joy. Yet I don't think my country felt much joy.
What of the future? We are embarking upon a decade during which our people will face what may be the greatest challenge we have ever faced, not only because the threat is so huge, but also because we have never before been so damaged. But we must face the challenge, and we must defeat it, for if we have not done so by the end on the next decade, then the chance may be lost forever.
I believe we can prevail, we are a brave, resourceful and determined people, when we decide to be. We have been lost for a while, yet we can still find our way back. There are signs that the slumbering lion within the souls of our people is stirring and he can still awake in time, it remains only for us to call to him.
I wish you all a peaceful and joyous new year, but remember, we stand on the cusp of history, where we stand in ten year from now will determine whether our history is over, or whether we as a people will have faced down a deadly foe and emerged, harmed certainly, scarred without question, wiser we hope, but still as a nation, intact and with a future.
Be brave, for we can, and must, succeed.