- Michael Joseph Savage, prime minister of New Zealand during WWII, made a famous speech declaring his tiny country's support for their old colonial ally, Great Britain, upon the UK's declaration of war on Germany. Even more impressive, he made this speech from his deathbed:
With gratitude for the past and confidence in the future we range ourselves without fear beside Britain. Where she goes, we go; where she stands, we stand. We are only a small and young nation, but we march with a union of hearts and souls to a common destiny.
- Nelson Mandela, at the Rivonia Trial. Bonus points for being said from the dock, where he thought he faced the death penalty:
Africans want to be paid a living wage. Africans want to perform work which they are capable of doing, and not work which the Government declares them to be capable of. Africans want to be allowed to live where they obtain work, and not be endorsed out of an area because they were not born there. Africans want to be allowed to own land in places where they work, and not to be obliged to live in rented houses which they can never call their own. Africans want to be part of the general population, and not confined to living in their own ghettoes. African men want to have their wives and children to live with them where they work, and not be forced into an unnatural existence in men's hostels. African women want to be with their menfolk and not be left permanently widowed in the Reserves. Africans want to be allowed out after eleven o'clock at night and not to be confined to their rooms like little children. Africans want to be allowed to travel in their own country and to seek work where they want to and not where the Labor Bureau tells them to. Africans want a just share in the whole of South Africa; they want security and a stake in society.Above all, we want equal political rights, because without them our disabilities will be permanent. I know this sounds revolutionary to the whites in this country, because the majority of voters will be Africans. This makes the white man fear democracy.But this fear cannot be allowed to stand in the way of the only solution which will guarantee racial harmony and freedom for all. It is not true that the enfranchisement of all will result in racial domination. Political division, based on color, is entirely artificial and, when it disappears, so will the domination of one color group by another. The ANC has spent half a century fighting against racialism. When it triumphs it will not change that policy.This then is what the ANC is fighting. Their struggle is a truly national one. It is a struggle of the African people, inspired by their own suffering and their own experience. It is a struggle for the right to live.During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.
- Ihlya Ehrenburg was a Soviet propagandist who was widely loved by frontline Red Army soldiers. When you read one of his articles, given to Soviet ground forces as a radio address and through the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper, you begin to understand just why the Germans hated the Soviet Union, and just why they were so terrified of them. It really is chilling reading: "Do not count days; do not count miles. Count only the number of Germans you have killed. Kill the German - this is your old mother's prayer. Kill the German - this is what your children beg. Kill the German - this is the cry of your Russian earth. Do not waver. Do not let up. Kill."note
Here are excerpts form three letters found on killed Germans.Superintendent Reinhardt writes to Lieutenant Otto von Schirach:"The French were taken to the factory. I've chosen six Russians from the Minsk Region. They are much more enduring than the French. Only one of them died, the rest continue to work in the field and on the farm. Their upkeep costs absolutely nothing, so we don't have to worry that these beasts, whose children could be killing our soldiers right now, eat German bread. Yesterday I lightly punished two Russian bastards who secretly drank skim milk that was for the pigs..."Matheas Zimlich writes to his brother, Gefreiter Heinrich Zimlich:"In Leiden there is a camp for Russians where you can see them. They don't fear weapons, but we talk to them with a good whipping..."A certain Otto Essmann writes to Lieutenant Helmut Weigand:"We have some captive Russians here. These freaks eat worms, they eat from the rubbish bin. I saw them eat grass. And to think these are humans!.."These slavers want to turn our people into slaves. They bring Russians to their country, mock them, drive them to madness with hunger, to the point of eating grass and worms, and a filthy German with a rotten cigar in his mouth philosophises: "Are these even people?.."We know everything. We remember everything. We understand: Germans are not people. Henceforth, the word "German" is the deadliest curse. Henceforth, the word "German" discharges rifles. We shall not talk. We shall not resent. We shall kill. If you haven't killed a single German in a day, your day is wasted. If you think your comrade will kill your German for you, you underestimate the threat. If you don't kill a German, the German will kill you. He will take all yours and he will torture them in his damned Germany. If you can't kill a German with a bullet, kill him with a bayonet. If all is calm on your part of the front, if you are waiting for the battle, kill a German before the battle. If you let a German live, the German will hang a Russian man and disgrace a Russian woman. If you've already killed a German, kill another one — there's nothing more amusing for us than German corpses.Don't count days. Don't count miles. Count only the Germans you've killed.Kill the German! — begs your old motherKill the German! — prays your childKill the German! — cries your Russian landDon't miss.Don't let up.Kill!
- This speech is very often misquoted and made look like Ehrenburg was claiming that Germans were actually inferior to Russians and encouraging Soviet soldiers to commit atrocities. The full text of the speech, however, shows that it is not the case:
- Empress Theodora during the Nika Revolt (532). We don't know exactly what she said, but it was something like: "My lords, the present occasion is too serious to allow me to follow the convention that a woman should not speak in a man's council. Those whose interests are threatened by extreme danger should think only of the wisest course of action, not of conventions. In my opinion, flight is not the right course, even if it should bring us to safety. It is impossible for a person, having been born into this world, not to die; but for one who has reigned it is intolerable to be a fugitive. May I never be deprived of this purple robe, and may I never see the day when those who meet me do not call me empress. If you wish to save yourself, my lord, there is no difficulty. We are rich; over there is the sea, and yonder are the ships. Yet reflect for a moment whether, when you have once escaped to a place of security, you would not gladly exchange such safety for death. As for me, I agree with the adage that the royal purple is the noblest shroud." And yes, she did convince Justinian to fight and win.
- Boudicca's final speech to her army (60) has been verbally passed down as such: "But now, it is not as a woman descended from noble ancestry, but as one of the people that I am avenging lost freedom, my scourged , and marked body, the outraged chastity of my daughters. Roman lust has gone so far that not our very person, nor even age or virginity, are left unpolluted. But heaven is on the side of a righteous vengeance; a legion which dared to fight has perished; the rest are hiding themselves in their camp, or are thinking anxiously of flight. They will not sustain even the din and the shout of so many thousands, much less our charge and our blows. If you weigh well the strength of the armies, and the causes of the war, you will see that in this battle you must conquer or die. This is a woman's resolve; as for men, they may live and be slaves, and captive." Her army lost, however.
"Ignore the racket made by these savages. There are more women than men in their ranks. They are not soldiers - they're not even properly equipped. We've beaten them before and when they see our weapons and feel our spirit, they'll crack. Stick together. Throw the javelins, then push forward: knock them down with your shields and finish them off with your swords. Forget about plunder. Just win and you'll have everything."
- By contrast opposing Roman general Gaius Suetonius Paulinus's rousing speech was less rousing but more on the practical side:
- French Revolution general Jean-Baptiste Jourdan at the Battle of Fleurus (1794):
"Retreat ? No retreat today ! Victory or Death !"
- This trope was essentially Cicero's job. All it took was a series of rousing speeches from this man to have the conspirator Catiline executed without a trial.
- Abraham Lincoln: "Four score and seven years ago..."
- Frederick the Great to his fleeing Prussian troops at the Battle of Kolin in 1757 : "Ihr verfluchten Racker, wollt ihr denn ewig leben?" (roughly: "You damned bastards, do you want to live forever?")
- The U.S. Marines in World War I, having just arrived on the Western Front, were sent into battle through retreating French troops. After being implored to retreat with them, one of the Marine officers offered: 'Retreat? Hell no, we just got here!' (the attribution as to which officer offered the quote is sketchy though).
- Queen Elizabeth I (1588, defeat of the Spanish armada): "My loving people, we have been persuaded by some, that are careful of our safety, to take heed how we commit ourselves to armed multitudes, for fear of treachery; but I assure you, I do not desire to live to distrust my faithful and loving people. Let tyrants fear; I have always so behaved myself that, under God, I have placed my chiefest strength and safeguard in the loyal hearts and good will of my subjects. And therefore I am come amongst you at this time, not as for my recreation or sport, but being resolved, in the midst and heat of the battle, to live or die amongst you all; to lay down, for my God, and for my kingdom, and for my people, my honor and my blood, even the dust. I know I have but the body of a weak and feeble woman; but I have the heart of a king, and of a king of England, too; and think foul scorn that Parma or Spain, or any prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realms: to which, rather than any dishonor should grow by me, I myself will take up arms; I myself will be your general, judge, and rewarder of every one of your virtues in the field. I know already, by your forwardness, that you have deserved rewards and crowns; and we do assure you, on the word of a prince, they shall be duly paid you. In the mean my lieutenant general shall be in my stead, than whom never prince commanded a more noble and worthy subject; not doubting by your obedience to my general, by your concord in the camp, and by your valor in the field, we shall shortly have a famous victory over the enemies of my God, of my kingdom, and of my people."
- On Omaha Beach on D-Day, Col. George Taylor got his troops off the beach by saying, "There are two kinds of people who are staying on this beach; the dead and those who are going to die! Now let's get the hell out of here!"
- The Patton Speech: "No bastard ever won a war, by dying for his country. He won it, by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."
- Winston Churchill's speeches during World War II. The man was a master of the Rousing Speech.
I hope that any of my friends and colleagues, or former colleagues, who are affected by the political reconstruction, will make allowance, all allowance, for any lack of ceremony with which it has been necessary to act. I would say to the House, as I said to those who have joined this government: "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat."We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many long months of struggle and of suffering. You ask, what is our policy? I can say: It is to wage war, by sea, land and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us; to wage war against a monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark, lamentable catalogue of human crime. That is our policy. You ask, what is our aim?I can answer in one word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of all error, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival. Let that be realised; no survival for the British Empire, no survival for all that the British Empire has stood for, no survival for the urge and impulse of the ages, that mankind will move forward towards its goal. But I take up my task with buoyancy and hope. I feel sure that our cause will not be suffered to fail among men. At this time I feel entitled to claim the aid of all, and I say, "come then, let us go forward together with our united strength."
- May 13, 1940:
"I have, myself, full confidence that if all do their duty, if nothing is neglected, and if the best arrangements are made, as they are being made, we shall prove ourselves once again able to defend our Island home, to ride out the storm of war, and to outlive the menace of tyranny, if necessary for years, if necessary alone.At any rate, that is what we are going to try to do. That is the resolve of His Majesty's Government-every man of them. That is the will of Parliament and the nation.The British Empire and the French Republic, linked together in their cause and in their need, will defend to the death their native soil, aiding each other like good comrades to the utmost of their strength.Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail.We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old."
- June 4, 1940:
But as it is, I am happy to inform the House that our fighter strength is stronger at the present time relatively to the Germans, who have suffered terrible losses, than it has ever been; and consequently we believe ourselves possessed of the capacity to continue the war in the air under better conditions than we have ever experienced before. I look forward confidently to the exploits of our fighter pilots—these splendid men, this brilliant youth—who will have the glory of saving their native land, their island home, and all they love, from the most deadly of all attacks. ...What General Weygand called the Battle of France is over. I expect that the Battle of Britain is about to begin. Upon this battle depends the survival of Christian civilization. Upon it depends our own British life, and the long continuity of our institutions and our Empire. The whole fury and might of the enemy must very soon be turned on us.Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this Island or lose the war. If we can stand up to him, all Europe may be free and the life of the world may move forward into broad, sunlit uplands. But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new Dark Age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science.Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, This was their finest hour.
- June 18, 1940:
- De Gaulle, this same June 18, 1940. His government surrendered after the hero of the previous war, Pétain, was put to power. He was a brigadier general in London, with no army, with no navy, with no air force. His country was clearly on the track of fallen powers, however the war ended. For everyone else, it would have been the end of the fight. For him... it was only the beginning. When he finished his job, he managed not only to regain everything lost, but to make sure his country was still among the great powers (all the while pissing off a large bunch of his allies).
The leaders who, for many years, have been at the head of the French armies have formed a government. This government, alleging the defeat of our armies, has made contact with the enemy in order to stop the fighting. It is true, we were, we are, overwhelmed by the mechanical, ground and air forces of the enemy. Infinitely more than their number, it is the tanks, the aeroplanes, the tactics of the Germans which are causing us to retreat. It was the tanks, the aeroplanes, the tactics of the Germans that surprised our leaders to the point of bringing them to where they are today.But has the last word been said? Must hope disappear? Is defeat final? No!Believe me, I who am speaking to you with full knowledge of the facts, and who tell you that nothing is lost for France. The same means that overcame us can bring us victory one day. For France is not alone! She is not alone! She is not alone! She has a vast Empire behind her. She can align with the British Empire that holds the sea and continues the fight. She can, like England, use without limit the immense industry of the United States.This war is not limited to the unfortunate territory of our country. This war is not over as a result of the Battle of France. This war is a worldwide war. All the mistakes, all the delays, all the suffering, do not alter the fact that there are, in the world, all the means necessary to crush our enemies one day. Vanquished today by mechanical force, in the future we will be able to overcome by a superior mechanical force. The fate of the world depends on it.I, General de Gaulle, currently in London, invite the officers and the French soldiers who are located in British territory or who might end up here, with their weapons or without their weapons, I invite the engineers and the specialised workers of the armament industries who are located in British territory or who might end up here, to put themselves in contact with me.Whatever happens, the flame of the French resistance must not be extinguished and will not be extinguished. Tomorrow, as today, I will speak on the radio from London.
- Franklin Delano Roosevelt
This is preeminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today. This great Nation will endure as it has endured, will revive and will prosper. So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself — nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. In every dark hour of our national life a leadership of frankness and vigor has met with that understanding and support of the people themselves which is essential to victory.Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan....Yesterday the Japanese Government also launched an attack against Malaya. Last night Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong. Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam. Last night Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands. Last night the Japanese attacked Wake Island. This morning the Japanese attacked Midway Island.Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves.Always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us. No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again.Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounded determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.
- March 4, 1933:
- Paratrooper Joseph Beyrle, the only soldier known to have served with both US and Soviet armies, relates how the female commander of his Soviet tank battalion (possibly Aleksandra Samusenko) would always use the same stirring phrase, followed by her troops enthusiastic "UH-RAAAAAH!" When Beyrle asked for a translation it turned out to be: "Follow my ass as if you can have it!"
- Martin Luther King, on the 26th of August, 1963:
We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children. ...And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.I have a dream today!I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of "interposition" and "nullification" — one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.I have a dream today!
- And on April 3, 1968, the day before he was kiled:
And then I got to Memphis. And some began to say the threats, or talk about the threats that were out. What would happen to me from some of our sick white brothers? Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it doesn't matter with me now. Because I've been to the mountaintop. And I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the promised land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land. So I'm happy, tonight. I'm not worried about anything. I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.
- Jim Valvano at the 1993 ESPY Awards. After being diagnosed with bone cancer in June of 1992 and discovering it had metastasized the following month, he was awarded the Arthur Ashe Courage and Humanitarian Award at the inaugural edition of the ESPYs. In his acceptance speech (with most of his ESPN co-workers in or near tears), he announced the creation of the "V Foundation", which would be dedicated to finding a cure for cancer, and that its motto would be his famous quotation, "Don't give up. Don't ever give up." At one point, the teleprompter flashed that he had 30 seconds to wrap it up, at which point he said, "They got that screen up there flashing 30 seconds, like I care about that screen. I got tumors all over my body and I'm worried about some guy in the back going 30 seconds." The conclusion:
Valvano: Cancer can take away all of my physical abilities. It cannot touch my mind, it cannot touch my heart, and it cannot touch my soul. And those three things are going to carry on forever. I thank you and God bless you all.
- The 1993 ESPYs were held on March 3. Valvano died April 28, 1993, at the age of 47.
- There was a bit of Defictionalization with the example from Knute Rockne: All-American listed under Film. The actor giving the speech was Ronald Reagan, and he was so effective at giving the speech in the first take, the other actors became so fired up that they just charged towards the door. The problem was, it was just a set, and the group of actors playing the team tore down the whole set in their charge. It had to be rebuilt for an additional take.
You volunteered to die for your country, and now you have the chance do it! ~Union General Charles Smith, during the American Civil War.
- George Washington was really good at these.
My brave fellows, you have done all I asked you to do, and more than can be reasonably expected; but your country is at stake, your wives, your houses and all that you hold dear. You have worn yourselves out with fatigues and hardships, but we know not how to spare you. If you will consent to stay one month longer, you will render that service to the cause of liberty, and to your country, which you probably can never do under any other circumstances.
- January 3, 1777:
The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves; whether they are to have any property they can call their own; whether their houses and farms are to be pillaged and destroyed, and themselves consigned to a state of wretchedness from which no human efforts will deliver them. The fate of unborn millions will now depend, under God, on the courage and conduct of this army. Our cruel and unrelenting enemy leaves us only the choice of brave resistance, or the most abject submission. We have, therefore, to resolve to conquer or die.Our own Country’s Honor all call upon us for a vigorous and manly exertion, and if we now shamefully fail, we shall become infamous to the whole world. Let us therefore rely upon the goodness of the Cause, and the aid of the supreme Being, in whose hands Victory is, to animate and encourage us to great and noble Actions—The Eyes of all our Countrymen are now upon us, and we shall have their blessings, and praises, if happily we are the instruments of saving them from the Tyranny meditated against them. Let us therefore animate and encourage each other, and shew the whole world, that a Freeman contending for Liberty on his own ground is superior to any slavish mercenary on earth.
- August 27 1776:
My Lords, I rejoice that the grave has not closed upon me; that I am still alive to lift up my voice against the dismemberment of this ancient and most noble monarchy! Pressed down as I am by the hand of infirmity, I am little able to assist my country in this most perilous conjuncture; but, my Lords, while I have sense and memory, I will never consent to deprive the royal offspring of the House of Brunswick, the heirs of the Princess Sophia, of their fairest inheritance. Where is the man that will dare to advise such a measure? My Lords, his Majesty succeeded to an empire as great in extent as its reputation was unsullied. Shall we tarnish the lustre of this nation by an ignominious surrender of its rights and fairest possessions? Shall this great kingdom, that has survived, whole and entire, the Danish depredations, the Scottish inroads, and the Norman conquest; that has stood the threatened invasion of the Spanish Armada, now fall prostrate before the House of Bourbon? Surely, my Lords, this nation is no longer what it was! Shall a people, that seventeen years ago was the terror of the world, now stoop so low as to tell its ancient inveterate enemy, take all we have, only give us peace? It is impossible! ...My Lords, any state is better than despair. Let us at least make one effort; and if we must fall, let us fall like men!
- From the other side, the Earl of Chatham gave one of the most savage, rousing, and awe-inspiring speeches in House of Commons history during the Revolutionary War. It was so powerful, and he was so old, that he died of a stroke soon after:
- Say what you will about /b/, but when they get stirred to righteousness it's a sight to behold, as in this message about rescuing a young Anoynmous from his insane mother:
"Any of you ever watch the Rambo movies? Because that's what this is. Sure, we're going in guns blazing, fucking up anyone who gets in our way, but by God this is a rescue mission. We've got a /b/rother behind enemy lines who needs our help! This woman is batshit insane and we can't let her continue fucking with him like this. She wanted to ABORT HER TEENAGE SON because he was viewing pornography. She tells him he's a rapist because he likes girls. She tells him that "his kind" are responsible for everything wrong in the world. She tells him that he is worthless and inferior. This is unacceptable to me as an Anonymous, it is unacceptable to me as a man, and it is unacceptable to me as a decent human being. Do what you have to do - tell the son, tell the ex, tell social services, but we are going to get our man out alive."
- If you've watched Apollo13, you probably remember Flight Director Gene Kranz's "Failure is not an option!" speech. The real Gene Kranz didn't say this specific line during the mission, but if you read his memoir to find out what he actually said, the sentiment is exactly the same:
Okay, listen up. When you leave this room, you must leave believing that this crew is coming home. I don't give a damn about the odds and I don't give a damn that we've never done anything like this before. Flight Control will never lose an American in space. You've got to believe, your people have got to believe, that this crew is coming home. Now let's get going!
- Shakespeare's Henry V gave two memorable Rousing Speeches:
Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead.
In peace there's nothing so becomes a man
As modest stillness and humility:
But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
Then imitate the action of the tiger;
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
Disguise fair nature with hard-favour'd rage;
Then lend the eye a terrible aspect;
Let pry through the portage of the head
Like the brass cannon; let the brow o'erwhelm it
As fearfully as doth a galled rock
O'erhang and jutty his confounded base,
Hold hard the breath and bend up every spirit
To his full height. On, on, you noblest English.
Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof!
Fathers that, like so many Alexanders,
Have in these parts from morn till even fought
And sheathed their swords for lack of argument:
Dishonour not your mothers; now attest
That those whom you call'd fathers did beget you.
Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
And teach them how to war. And you, good yeoman,
Whose limbs were made in England, show us here
The mettle of your pasture; let us swear
That you are worth your breeding; which I doubt not;
For there is none of you so mean and base,
That hath not noble lustre in your eyes.
I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:
Follow your spirit, and upon this charge
Cry 'God for Harry, England, and Saint George!'If we are mark'd to die, we are enow
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires:
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England:
God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more, methinks, would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made
And crowns for convoy put into his purse:
We would not die in that man's company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is called the feast of Crispian:
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian:'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars.
And say 'These wounds I had on Crispin's day.'
Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember with advantages
What feats he did that day: then shall our names.
Familiar in his mouth as household words
Harry the king, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remember'd;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.
The Collectors blindside their targets. Hit and run. As powerful as they are, they're cowards. They've never had to stand and fight the best of us — that's you.
I don't know if they can feel fear, but we're damned sure going to give them the opportunity. Hit them hard! One way or another, it ends here!
The Collectors, the Reapers... they aren't a threat to us. They're a threat to everything — everyone. Those are the lives we're fighting for. That's the scale.
It's been a long journey, and no one's coming out without scars. But it all comes down to this moment. We win or lost it all in the next few moments. Make me proud. Make yourselves proud.
Selendis: This is the hour of truth, noble templar! Let the enemy know the wrath of Aiur's champions!
Artanis: My brethren, hear me, for there is little time left. All that remains of our race, our civilization, are those that stand beside you now. Trust in each other. Strike as one will. Let our last stand burn a memory so bright we will be remembered forever. En taro Tassadar!
I love holocausts. I love blitzkriegs. I love defensive lines. I love sieges, charges, I love mop-up operations, and retreats.
Wars across prairies, in streets, in trenches, in grasslands, in frozen tundras, through deserts, on the sea, in the air, I love every act of war that can occur upon this earth.
I love blasting the enemy to smithereens with artillery salvos that thunder across the lines of battle.
My heart leaps with joy whenever a soldier is tossed high into the air and cut to pieces by well placed sniper rounds.
And there is nothing like a tank operator using a Tiger 88 to destroy enemy tanks. And the feeling that comes when a soldier runs screaming from his blazing tank only to be mowed down by heavy machine gun fire, is such an exquisite feeling.
Like when ranks of infantry brandish their bayonets rushing into the enemy line. It moves me deep within my heart to watch a fresh recruit stabbing over and over into the bloated chest of a long-dead enemy.
The sight of deserters being strung up from a street lamp is an irresistible pleasure. And there is nothing more arousing, than the sounds made by prisoners of war dropping like flies, screaming in agony as they're mowed down by ear piercing schmeissers!
When a band of pitiful resistance fighters makes their final stands with nothing but small arms, only to have their city smashed to atoms block by block by 4.8 ton bombshells, I'm in ecstasy.
I love it when my forces are ravaged by a Russian armored division. It's so sad to see towns and villages that were supposed to be defended at all costs, being laid to waste, their women and children being raped, and killed.
I love to be squashed under the heel of the British and American war machines. The humiliation, as my men crawl around like vermin, ducking the Jabo flying overhead.
Gentlemen... All I ask for is war, a war so grand as to make Hell itself tremble. Gentlemen, I ask you as fellow brothers in arms, what is it you really want? Do you wish for further war as I do? Do you wish for a merciless, bloody war? A war whose fury is built with iron, and lightning, and fire? Do you ask for war to sweep in like a tempest, leaving not even ravens to scavenge, from this Earth!?"
Very well. Then krieg is what you shall have. We are a clenched fist, ready to strike down all who oppose us, with our might. But.. After enduring over half a century wallowing in the darkness, for us, a simple *ordinary* war will no longer be sufficient. We need a MASSIVE war! A war beyond any other that man's history has never known!
We are but a single battalion.. The remnants of of defeated army numbering less than a thousand strong. However, I believe that each of you old warriors is worth a thousand of their sickly soft children! We represent a force that could easily defeat an army of a million and one men! It is time for them to awake the ones who sent us screaming into oblivion, and who now lie sleeping. Let's drag them out of bed by the hair, and remind them of what we are! We will remind them of what it feels like to live in fear. We will remind them of the sound our jackboots make against their throats. We will remind them, that there are more things between Heaven and Hell than are dreamt of in their philosophy.
Our Kampfgruppe of one thousand vampires will burn this world down to ash. Yes, my friends! Soon, Europe's charred remains will illuminate the night sky! I have brought you all back just as I promised I would. Back to our favorite battlefield. Back to our beloved war!
At last, the sea lion has crossed the ocean and is heading up the hill! Attention soldiers of the Millennium battalion, this is a message from your commander:
Friends...let's bring them Hell."
I've just been informed that our mid-range military bases at Beta Durani and Proxima Three have fallen to the Minbari advance. We've lost contact with Io and must conclude that they, too, have fallen to an advance force.
Our military intelligence believes that the Minbari intend to bypass Mars and hit Earth directly, and the attack may come at any time.
We have continued to broadcast our surrender and a plea for mercy, and they have not responded. We therefore can only conclude that we stand at the twilight of the human race.
In order to buy more time for our evacuation transports to leave Earth, we ask for the support of every ship capable of fighting, to take part in a last defense of our homeworld. We will not lie to you - we do not believe that survival is a possibility. We believe that anyone who joins this battle... will never come home. But for every ten minutes we can delay the military advance, several hundred more civilians may have a chance to escape to neutral territory. Though Earth may fall, the human race must have a chance to continue elsewhere.
No greater sacrifice has ever been asked of a people, but I ask you now: to step forward one last time - one last battle to hold the line against the night.
May God go with you all.
The Immortal Emperor is with us, and we are invincible.
His soldiers will strike you down. His war machines will crush you under their treads. His mighty guns will bring the very sky crashing down upon you. You cannot win. The Emperor has given us his greatest weapon to wield, so make yourselves ready.
We are the First Kronus Regiment, and today is our Victory Day!
- The rousing speech is practically Ulfric Stormcloak's stock-in-trade in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
"I fight for the men I've held in my arms, dying on foreign soil! I fight for their wives and children, whose names I heard whispered in their last breaths! I fight for we few who did come home, only to find our country full of strangers wearing familiar faces! I fight for my people, impoverished to pay the debts of an Empire too weak to rule them, yet brands them criminals for wanting to rule themselves! I fight so that all the fighting I've already done hasn't been for nothing! I fight...because I must.""This is it, men! It's time to make this city ours! We come to this moment carried by the sacrifices and courage of our fellows. Those who have fallen. And those still bearing the shields to our right. On this day our enemy will know the fullness of our determination, the true depth of our anger, and the exalted righteousness of our cause! The gods are watching! The spirits of our ancestors are stirring! And men under suns yet to dawn will be transformed by what we do here today! Fear neither pain, nor darkness. For Sovngarde awaits those who die with weapons in their hands, and courage in their hearts! We now fight our way to Castle Dour to cut the head off the Legion itself. And in that moment, the gods will look down and see Skyrim as she was meant to be. Full of Nords who are mighty, powerful, and free! Ready now! Everyone, with me! For the sons and daughters of Skyrim! RAAAAAARGH!"
- Aaron Kimball, President of the New California Republic before the battle of Hoover Dam:
''Thank you, my fellow Californians, who have come so far to answer the call to service put forth by the republic. It is for you that I have come here, and it is because of you that I am able to do so. We enjoy our privileges because you take the greatest of risks and are prepared to make the most noble of sacrifices. It is because of men and women like Private First Class Jeremy Watson that Nevada and the New California Republic remain free and secure.
Born in a tin shack on the outskirts of One Pine, Jeremy Watson never had it easy. His father worked as a caravan guard on the Short Loop, and his mother, like many Californians, braved the ruins of the Old World as a prospector. They suffered through water shortages, raider attacks, and the Brotherhood War. Like our mighty Sierra Nevadas, they endured. But the time came when they could no longer shoulder the burden alone. Twelve years ago, they called out for help, and the republic heard them.
Troopers and rangers, just like you, answered the clarion call. Men and women stepped forward to say, "I will carry the weight." And at Owen's Lake, we made true on our promise, driving out the raider tribes to establish a lasting peace in the eastern Sierra Nevadas. We carried the weight, and though we left behind many of our brothers and sisters on that battlefield, it did not break us.
Ten years ago, Chief Elise met with representatives of the Desert Rangers to discuss terms of what would become the Ranger Unification Treaty. The treaty was more than a resolution to welcome the Desert Rangers into the republic. It was a covenant to protect southern Nevada against Caesar's Legion and the tyranny of his regime.
There are some back home who ask me, "But who are we protecting? What is Nevada to us?" Sometimes we forget that the light of our society shines beyond our borders. Sometimes we take those privileges for granted that our forebears fought so hard to achieve. We must always remember that wherever Californians stand, we carry our principles with us: equal respect, representation, and protection under the laws of a just republic. This was the same fire that burned in the heart of the Old World that preceded us. We are the heirs of that civilization, torchbearers eastward of the Pacific, into the darkness of this wasted land.
When the republic called on the men and women of California to carry that fire across the Mojave, Jeremy Watson answered. You answered. Together, you carried the weight. And when PFC Watson's platoon came under attack at Forlorn Hope, he took the greatest risk, not only for his fellow Californians, but for California itself. He was prepared to make the most noble of sacrifices, to defend the principles of our republic, even here, on Nevada soil.
His actions are a beacon to all of us who stand here today in tribute to his valor. Private First Class Jeremy Watson, on behalf of the senate and people of the New California Republic, it is my honor to present you with the Star of Sierra Madre.
Not far from this spot, a monument stands as a tribute to the sacrifice made by those who came before us, the men and women who fulfilled the promise we made to the Desert Rangers. Its back is inscribed with the names of the troopers and rangers who carried the weight. And because they made the most noble of sacrifices, it did not break us.
Four years ago, we held this dam. Four years ago, we carried the weight. Four years ago, we drew a line through the Mojave as clear as the Colorado River, a line that Caesar cannot cross. Today, you stand here with our brothers and sisters to hold that line. Today, you honor all Californians by carrying that weight. Today, you are the waves of the Pacific, pushing ever eastward. You are the sequoias rising from the Sierra Nevadas, defiant and enduring. You are the great western light of California, torchbearers in the darkness, living reminders of all that is best in our republic."
Forty Inspirational Speeches in Two Minutes(Follow along on YouTube...)
- "Will you fight?!" "No! We will run. And we will live." "Shame on you. This could be the greatest night of our lives, but you're going to let it be the worst. And I guarantee a week won't go by in your life you won't regret walking out, letting them get the best of you. Well, I'm not going home. We've come too far! And I'm going to stay right here and fight for this lost cause. A day may come when the courage of men fails... but it is not this day. The line must be drawn here. This far, no further! I'm not saying it's going to be easy; You're going to work harder than you ever worked before. But that's fine, we'll just get tougher with it! If a person grits his teeth and shows real determination, failure is not an option. That's how winning is done! Believe me when I say, We can break this army here And win just one for the Gipper. But I say to you what every warrior has known since the beginning of time: You've got to get mad. I mean plum mad dog mean. If you would be free men, then you must fight to fulfill that promise! Let us cut out their living guts One inch at a time, And they will know what we can do! Let no man forget how menacing we are. We are lions! You're like a big bear, man! This is your time! Seize the day, Never surrender, victory or death, that's the Chicago Way! Who's with me? Clap! Clap! Don't let Tink die! Clap! Alright! Let's fly! And gentlemen in England now abed shall know my name is the Lord when I tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our Independence Day!"