Published 20 March 2003

At this difficult moment in our nation's history, I would like to express my pride in you, the British service and civilian personnel deployed in the Gulf and in the vital supporting roles in this country and further afield.

I have every confidence in your professionalism and commitment as you face the challenges before you. Especially for those of you now waiting to go into action, may your mission be swift and decisive, your courage steady and true, and your conduct in the highest traditions of your service both in waging war and bringing peace.

My thoughts are with you all, and with your families and friends who wait at home for news and pray for your safe return.

ELIZABETH R.