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Wednesday, 14 April 1915

Senator McDOUGALL (NEW SOUTH WALES) - Has the attention of the Minister of Defencebeen drawn to a statement by the ex-Governor of German New Guinea, published in the New York Times, reprinted in the Sydney Daily Telegraph of8th April, and headed -

New Guinea Rulers Saved by a "Bluff." - Germanex-Governor of Settlement tells how he Dictated Terms to Australians. - Got Safe Conduct Home. - With Handful of Whites and Native Police, Dr. Haber Parleyed for Days with Invading Force.

I do not propose to read the whole of the report, but in one part a most serious charge is made against our forces, which I think should be inquired into -

We did not entrench at Toma. We just waited to see what was going to happen. In a few days they bombarded one of the sea coast places with 6-in. guns, firing GO shots, in spite of the fact that the manager of the Forsythe company, owners of one of the big plantations, had assured the Australian officers that the only inhabitants left in the place were a white woman with three children, plantation managers and native workmen.

Will the Minister make inquiries into this matter and find out the facts, so that this charge can be denied to the world ?

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