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Thursday, 25 February 1971

Senator CAVANAGH (South Australia) - Mr Deputy President, at question time yesterday I stated that it was my intention this evening to raise the failure of the Government to answer a number of questions that I have placed on the notice paper. Those questions have been there for more than a week. Whilst I recognise that that is not a long time for questions on notice to remain unanswered,I believe it is a long time because of the importance of the problem into which the questions seek to delve.

I gave notice at question time yesterday of my intention to raise this matter tonight if answers were not provided, in the hope that the Government would recognise the importance of this matter and would supply some answers to me today so that I would not need to raise this matter during this adjournment debate. Unfortunately, that has not happened.

As I outline the case I think that honourable senators will see the importance of it. If the allegations which my questions seek to probe are correct, a threat to many people in Australia is demonstrated. If the allegations bear scrutiny and have substance; many accusations against the Government and the Australian administration are illustrated. Therefore in the hope that, recognising the importance of this matter, the Government will do one of two things - that is, either answer the questions because the answers to the questions are easily obtainable or-

Senator Wright - The answers are being processed. They will be provided as soon as they can be. They relate to long distant matters and we have not had a reasonable time to formulate the answers yet. The honourable senator should not anticipate the answers to these questions by speaking on the adjournment debate.

Senator CAVANAGH - I appreciate the Minister's apology. I am sure that when the Minister sees the nature of the questions he shall see that there is no foundation in the information that has been given to him to the effect that the processing of these answers will lake time. The answers that are necessary to show the validity or otherwise of the accusations made can be supplied in half a day.

As everyone knows, my questions refer to the deaths of Dr Bogle and Mrs Chandler, whose bodies were found at Lane Cove. Sydney, on New Years Day 1963. One will see the nature of the matter that concerns me by referring to the series of articles which appeared in the Sydney Daily Mirror' on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. Those articles were written by Geoffrey Chandler, who was the husband of the woman found dead on the occasion that 1 have mentioned. In these articles, Geoffrey Chandler outlines further information that he has received as to the cause of the death of his wife. In the second article which appeared in the Daily Mirror' on Tuesday of this week, he poses 3 questions. Having posed the 3 questions, he says: 'I know that the answer to those vital questions is yes'. When honourable senators hear the questions of which this man says he knows the answers are in the affirmative they will appreciate the seriousness of the accusations. The questions were:

1.   Was the subject of Bogle's death a matter for discussion at a specially convened meeting of theFederal Cabinet in March.1963? This was before the opening of the inquest (in May) and at a time when police investigations were at fever pilch.

2.   Was the case further discussed later that year in Canberra by the Attorney-General, several leading members of the Federal Government and a leading member of the judiciary?

The author says that he knows that the answer to both those questions is yes. According to Geoffrey Chandler's statement, he knows that the answer is yes. Perhaps this is not unreasonable. There was a discussion by leading members who asked why this discussion was held.

Senator Byrne - The answer is yes, or he says that the answer is yes?

Senator CAVANAGH - It states: 'I know that the answer to these three vital questions is yes'. I want an examination of this subject for the purpose of seeing what confidence we can have in statements by Geoffrey Chandler and also what reliance we can place on the statements contained in a book. The third question - I ask honourable senators to listen to this - was in these terms:

Was a directive given by the Federal Government to all State police forces that the interest of national security could best be served by the police not discovering who was responsible for Bogle's death.

Consider the seriousness of this question, if it is based on fact.

Senator Little - The Government of the day in New South Wales should have known the truth or otherwise of that.

Senator CAVANAGH - I f what I am submitting can be established as bona fide there is no mystery about Bogle's death, and many members of the New South Wales police force know that. Honourable senators are interjecting butI should like to develop my own case. 1 hope that what I say in the course of this debate will open up a discussion and not be merely one speech in the adjournment debate. If interjections are made just to ridicule what 1 am saying I shall ignore them, but if any honourable senator wants enlightenment on the subject or to hear more about how I view this matter I shall be happy to answer his interjection. Geoffrey Chandler says that he has formed an opinion different from the opinion he held originally because some anonymous person has been telephoning him at night and telling him things about the case. He says that he gathers that this person is in fear oE his life, that he has not heard from him for months and that he may not still be alive. He said that this man, who speaks in a guttural voice, over a period of 6 months has told him many things and that he has heard the complete story, with the exception of a few loose ends. lt might be suggested that the source of this information does not give validity to Geoffrey Chandler's story, that therefore we cannot accept the story as authentic and must deal with it lightly. But what he has said is consistent with a book which was written and published by Catherine R. Dalton. Copies of that book have been distributed to honourable senators. The story is so consistent that if. one is correct, and if we can place any reliance on one, then there is a case that the Government has to answer. The book 'Without Hardware' by Catherine R. Dalton is, right from the beginning, either an informative, interesting revelation of the operations of foreign agents in Australia - if one can place any reliance on her story this distresses one and leaves one in fear - or it must be the rambling of a mentally deranged person against whom some action should be taken. Let us examine the matter for the purpose of seeing what validity we should give to this book by Catherine R. Dalton who submits a theory that, with the investigation of atomic expansion after the Second World War, a tripartite agreement was entered into at Quebec between Canada, Great Britain and the United States for the exchange of information on atomic energy, chemical and biological warfare, and rocketry.

The agreement, which was a secret agreement, contained conditions whereby one country could establish a security force in another country, which was a party to the agreement, in order to protect the first country's interest, and the security force operating in the other country was not liable to report to the authorities of the country in which it was operating. Australia was not accepted as a party to this agreement because America was doubtful of Australia's security in its defence establishments. In 1949, when Chifley introduced the security service in

Australia under Mr Justice Reed of the South Australian Supreme Court, he established the conditions under which Australia could, and in fact did, become a party to this secret agreement. This gave the right to another country to establish a foreign force in Australia for the purpose of protecting the interests of that country. If anyone involved became a danger to the operations of another country, then under this international agreement it was quite right for that country to take action against the particular individual, and it is claimed that Dr Bogle, because of his scientific activities and his transfer to America, became a danger to American operations in Australia, and bis killing was a justifiable killing.

If we can establish the fact that we should listen to what Mrs Dalton says, then there is no secret about the murder of Dr Bogie or Mrs Chandler. We would know not only the chemical that Dr Bogle was killed with - and there would be medical opinion to substantiate it - but also who killed him. The name of the person who killed him would be available, and all the mystery surrounding this particular question would be cleared up. Mrs Dalton, in order to substantiate her bona fides, has given in her book and subsequently in conversation many instances where she has reported that particular things would happen and the things did happen. She was able to do this not because of any clairvoyance on her part but because she was operating and working among a section of the community which was engaged in sabotage and connected wilh security forces in Australia. All the information she possessed came from individuals and she claims that it was no dream. She cites cases where she was given warnings. The Minister could well inform the Senate whether such things have happened.

Let us look at question No. 850 which I have posed to the Minister representing the Attorney-General. It is as follows-

Did the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation assist an Australian citizen and a central European diplomat to leave Australia within 24 hours of the discovery of the bodies of the late Dr Bogle and Mrs Chandler at Lane Cove. New South Wales, on New Years Day 1963; if so. would a description of the Australian resemble the description, given in evidence at the subsequent inquest, of a man seen running from Lane Cove.

I do not think that it would take a great deal of time to findout whether the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation did assist 2 individuals to leave Australia within 24 hours of the discovery of the bodies. A visit to the library will give a description of the man seen running from the scene of the incident. In April 1965 Mrs Catherine R. Dalton claims she informed the honourable member for Hughes (Mr Les Johnson) of an attack upon naval vessels at Garden Island intended for 8th May 1965. On the same day Mrs Dalton telephoned a person on the staff of the Attorney-General's Department, requesting the names of security officers in Sydney whom she could contact and advise of the intended attack. As a result of the advice received. Mrs Dalton visited 2 security men in Sydney. 1 have deleted all names although 1 think in her book she gives the name of one of them. The name is available if it is of any interest to the Government and can be made available.

She had the interview with 2 security officers in New South Wales. She gave them the circumstances of the proposed attack at Garden Island a month hence, on 8th May 1965. On the 7th and 8th May 1965 she claims the Garden Island naval depot was closed for the stated reason of research purposes. The engine rooms of the vessels that Mrs Dalton named to the security officers were searched, without the discovery of any suspicious material. On 8th May 1965 there was a near collision of a United States submarine with a group of Australian naval vessels - on the very date she stated. On 10th May 1965 there was a collision at Garden Island resulting in damage to 4 Australian naval vessels. 1 have looked this up in the 'Sydney Morning Herald* and can find no report on the incident. Were there incident's at Garden Island on the 8th and 10th May? Was Garden Island closed down for research purposes or other purposes on the 7th and 8th May? Did Mrs Dalton interview 2 security officers in Sydney on. the date she staled? How long will it take to find this information? It is so unimportant to the Minister that it has already taken a week and he is not in a position to give the information at this stage.

Subsequently Mrs Dalton interviewed the Naval Intelligence and asked why 4 boats were docked together on that particular occasion to make them a perfect shot for a miniature Pearl Harbour at Garden Island. The officer said that he knew nothing about a threatened attack or a threatened explosion on the naval vessels. How long would it take to find this information? Tf the Government had any desire to clear itself of the serious accusations made in this book it could clear up this matter within a day or so. One gets some feeling that something may happen and it is a coincidence. But it is not a coincidence when it happens time and time again. Mrs Dalton went to the sergeant on duty at Government House to notify him of the imminent danger to the life of a senior politician. Seven and a half hours later a gun was fired in the face of Arthur Calwell in Sydney. This was the second occasion. She would have told the individual had the man she normally deals with at Government House been on duty, but he was not there. His name is available. It can be checked.

Herclaim is that she went and told the officer at Government House that the life of a senior politician in Sydney was in imminent danger 74 hours before Arthur Calwell was shot. The man who shot Arthur Calwell was found to be a mental defective and,I think was gaoled or locked away. Nevertheless, there was someone on a second occasion who we think was just a fanatic or someone who wanted to be important. The membership of the Nazi Party of Australia, which was behind the move, is known and has been stated by Mrs Dalton. Following the shooting of Arthur Calwell, on Mrs Dalton's version the Federal Attorney-General instructed a sergeant of police in New South Wales, who was a representative of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation in that State, to make an investigation. That sergeant was a member of the Nazi Party in Australia in 1943. Is this impossible of investigation? Does it take a week to find out whether Mrs Dalton did convey the information to the sergeant on duty at Government House? A ring on the telephone would provide verification or otherwise.

Let us see the other things that could be checked very quickly. In question No. 853 1 asked:

Was a Sydney police sergeant detailed to investigatethe sudden death of Dr Alfred Conlon in 1961?

Dr Conlonhad been medical adviser to our Prime Minister, John Curtin, and Field-Marshal Blarney. He died suddenly of a heart complaint, as his death certificate would show. But obviously the New South Wales police had sufficient suspicion to cause them to make an inquiry. The pertinent question that I asked was:

Was this investigation terminated on instructions from the then Commissioner of the Commonwealth Police; if so, why?

If a telephone call was made to the Commonwealth Police they would say either: This is true' or 'This is a lie'. They could exonerate the Government. It would brand Mrs Dalton as not knowing what she was talking about if the Minister could come back after making a telephone call and say: 'There is no validity in the accusation'. Silence would suggest that the Government has not the answer;

On 5th October 1966 Mrs Dalton visited Parliament House and put it on written record that an attempt upon the safety of Parliament House could be expected in about a month's time. In a month's time a person was apprehended on the front steps of Parliament House with a sawn-off shot gun in a brief case. Whether that warning was given can be ascertained within this building. Mrs Dalton's information was that the man apprehended was a cover-up for the exit of a person who intended to enter Parliament House by the unguarded back kitchen door and to leave Parliament House by the front door, depositing explosives as he went through. The man she named as having that intention was arrested the previous day in Sydney as a mental defective and locked away. Here again we see information that the warning was given and that it was given to witnesses who can be checked on.

The next question is one that the Minister representing the Minister for the Army could well take up. It is question No. 855 and is directed to him. The claim is that a large number of machine guns - I believe that the number was 88 - were stolen from the Ingleburn Army camp and that 14 of the guns were found later at a karate gymnasium conducted by a Hungarian.

Senator Greenwood - Does the allegation say when this occurred?

Senator CAVANAGH - My question does not, but the information as to when it occurred is available. The Hungarian was arrested and charged. Fourteen of the 88 guns were found. Mrs Dalton left Canberra and rode a motor scooter to Sydney for the purpose of putting certain statements to the solicitor representing the Hungarian. She states in her book that it was agreed in a conversation with the prosecutor that a charge of theft would not be preferred against the individual in return for the suppression of evidence that she was prepared to give that he was the holder of a forged invitation to attend a New Year's Eve party at Government House, Canberra. It was discovered afterwards that the man had received the invitation from a senior member of the Citizen Military Forces in Canberra. The accommodation of the Sydney entertainer and the friend of the Hungarian was searched by police in an attempt to find the forged invitation to the Government House party.

I am also asking the Minister- I think he could easily reply - whether a number of machine guns were stolen from the Ingleburn Army camp. We have had no reply to that question yet.' I do not know whether the Minister for Works was speaking on behalf of the Minister for the Army when he interjected earlier. I also ask whether it is a fact that these guns were not entered on the quartermaster's manuscript and as a result any disappearance of these guns would not have to be accounted for. That is the allegation.. The. Minister could easily answer this allegation because obviously the police record of the investigation into the theft would have shown whether the guns were entered on the records of the Department of the Army.

The home of Mrs Dalton was raided and searched by Commonwealth police in December 1967. The Commissioner of Police, who authorised the raid, informed the officers making the raid that the search was necessary as Mrs Dalton was expecting at any moment a serious attack upon a senior politician and that the search was for further information.Can this not be checked overnight? Was the search made? Was the instruction given to the officers because Mrs Dalton knew about an impending attack upon a senior politician? Mrs Dalton visited the Commonwealth police headquarters on 17th December 1967 and was told to get out of the place by the Deputy Chief of Police. She returned again to police headquarters on 19th December, repeating her warning and producing certain photostat documents as evidence that there was imminent danger to a senior politician. At about Christmas time our then Prime Minister disappeared. If what Mr Dalton says is true, she did not give only one isolated warning. An opportunity has been given to the Minister to say whether the allegations are true, but after more than a week he has not replied.

If the allegations are true the Government does not have a reply. If the Government did not issue a warning to police that it would be better in the interest of the security of Australia not to find the murderers of Dr Bogle, there is a danger to any active political supporter in Australia from the foreign forces operating here today. If they are not true, some action should be taken against such a publication. One can only assume from the refusal of the Government over this period of time to exonerate itself from, these serious allegations that there must be some validity in the charges. We are still waiting for a reply from the Government.

I have on the notice paper a further question about -Harold Holt but I understand that Senator Keeffe has made a long study about the disappearance of Harold Holt and is preparing some submissions on this case. As soon as he has completed his investigations he will follow in telling what he knows about that case. But as a result of publicity, I have received numerous letters. Possibly some of them have come from cranks or neurotic persons. But it is obvious that a big section of the Australian community - accepts that a further inquiry is needed into the Bogie case, and does not accept the official report on 'the disappearance of the late Harold Holt.

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