Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard   

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Friday, 5 December 1986
Page: 3525


Senator Sir JOHN CARRICK(3.42) —I have not had time to do more than glance at the recommendations in the `Review of material relating to the entry of suspected war criminals into Australia' report and some of its sections. It is a very comprehensive report. Nevertheless, from what I have seen, I find the report precisely what I would expect from such a fine Australian, such a fine lawyer and such a man of dedication and integrity as Mr Andrew Menzies. In common with my colleagues, for a very considerable time I have been greatly concerned by a number of trends in this regard in Australia. I have been deeply concerned that, over a period of some six years or more, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation has been running campaigns on this question of nazi war criminals.

I would have no argument if, in general terms, the ABC had made assertions that nazi war criminals may have come into Australia at particular times. That in itself would have been a logical argument and one that one would expect in a situation that I remember very well-the immediate post-war years and the period in which, as Mr Menzies said, 170,000 displaced persons, most of them from pitiable and very bad circumstances, came to Australia. The great majority of them have become fine citizens and fine parents of generations of Australians. What concerned me enormously was that the ABC made specific mentions of names and made a series of allegations, repeating them over a number of programs. I was even more concerned by the situation that a Minister in the New South Wales Parliament, assisted by his Government, embarked upon a campaign of denigration of individuals, naming them specifically. I am specifically concerned that in this Parliament, the Australian Labor Party, as well as the Labor Party in the New South Wales Parliament, saw fit to name names.

I rise today to commend the report itself and the finding that there should be investigations of some 70 persons out of 170,000. I commend the report because it has cleared the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation and the intelligence services of Australia and overseas of any sense of conspiracy that has been talked about. I commend the report because it has cleared both Liberal and Labor governments of any sense of connivance with other governments overseas in some idea that we might protect some nazi war criminals against international communism. I commend the report because it got rid of any thought that there was any conspiracy at all. That is very clear. The allegations that have been made from time to time have been proven wrong. I commend the report especially because it has taken upon itself to look at the names of a number of people who were named by the ABC and who had been typified as nazi war criminals. The report has said that there is no such evidence. It mentions, for example, Mr Rover, whom I do not know, Dr Megay, whom I remember as a Federal president of the Hungarian Association in the early post-war years. It also mentions specifically a Slovene named Lyenko Urbanchich whose name is frequently-

Debate interrupted.