First, let us give thanks to all those who made this great victory possible. Dawn breaks today on a newly reclaimed Gondor only because of the great sacrifices made by the hobbits, dwarves, ents, and elves. It is due to their dedication and bravery that we will now see the King elect Aragorn ascend the throne. But we the stewards of Gondor — despite being the most grateful of public servants — are concerned. For some of the ideas expressed by you, the hobbits, dwarves, ents, and elves are very loud and also varied. And although the hobbits, dwarves, ents, and elves delivered us a victory by overcoming unprecedented obstacles and adversity — we the stewards are nervous about their vision — though as always, we are grateful for their work.
We know we have not been perfect. And yes, we could have done a better job of not allowing the charlatan Sarumon to come to power, but we must live and let live. Let our bygones be bygones. For that is the past, and are we not here to discuss the future similar to the past? Keeping a steady ship! That is what we Gondor-ians are known for. Like the White Tree of Nimloth, we are too deeply rooted in our past to start moving about willy nilly now.
Because we feel we stand at a precipice. Despite the great war, we did not win it all. Although Sarumon may soon be gone, the true blight of Mordor, Sauron won his battle, and will continue to influence us from his barren wasteland. We gnash our teeth at his very name! But we will choose not to focus on the negative. Because win or lose, nothing will make us change our tactics.
But this is not about us — it is about you! Yes, from the Northern shores of Anfalas, to the Anduin’s fertile delta soil, to the lofty White Mountains — it is you who saved us, and it is you to whom belongs our eternal gratitude. To the hobbits who left their beloved Shire! To the dwarves who armed us! To the ancient ents who traveled far to be by our side! And to the elves, who have been working for centuries, tirelessly. We were nervous when Aragorn chose Arwen, but her mixed heritage proved advantageous when the elves overwhelming delivered! What we lack in our listening, we make up for in our dependence on you to carry us home. Some of you have even worked within our ranks, and we almost always list you in our dedications!
But the orcs are now temporarily defeated, retreating to their safe spaces. They are plotting, scheming, and we expect more battles to come. We often think of the founders, who wrote of Gondor as a great city on a hill. Although none of the founders were a hobbit, dwarf, ent, or elf — that does not diminish their relevance to you now. We the stewards take solace in their vision. Because we know if given the choice between the orcs and we stewards — you, the hobbits, dwarves, ents, and elves will always choose us. So it is not your vision that we need, but only your loyalty. Thank you.