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Mafia influence and the Whitlam government.

The death of Mr. Al Grassby in April 2005 has elicited wide-spread public comments on his Mafia ties. Mr. Grassby, the architect of "multiculturalism" and non-assimilation in Australia, was an influential member of the Whitlam government, being the Minister for Immigration.

Mr. Bruce Provost, a retired National Crime Authority senior investigator, has recently indicated that he had no doubt that the Whitlam government Minister was paid to commit crimes and do favours for Calabrian Mafia members operating in Australia and that the National Crime Authority bowed to political pressure not to fully investigate his Mafia links. He indicated that there had been more than enough intelligence on Mr. Grassby to warrant a full-scale investigation but that he had been held back by the N.C.A. (1)

A Herald Sun report indicated inter alia:

--Giafranco Tizzoni, a Mafia supergrass, identified Mr. Grassby as being at the beck and call of Calabrian crime heads.

--Mr. Grassby had, for example, sponsored to Australia a Mafia member who had been convicted of killing police by exploding a hand grenade in a Calabrian police station.

--One of Mr. Grassby's closest associates was Toni Sergei, the man identified in court and in Parliament as the Mafia leader who ordered the execution of a member of parliament, Mr. Donald Mackay.

--Mr. Grassby was closely connected with marijuana growers in Griffith.

--The Mafia funded Mr. Grassby's election campaigns, in consideration of the abuse by him of his Ministerial powers. (2)

Mr. Provost indicated that the denial of resources and narrow terms of reference prevented him from carrying out a full investigation of Mr. Grassby, and that Mr. Grassby had used his influence over Labor governments in New South Wales and Canberra to restrict any enquiry. In 1987, for example, Mr. Provost had been sent abroad for four weeks, not being permitted to return until polling day (when the Hawke government was reelected), thus preventing him from charging Mr. Grassby before the election with conspiring to pervert the course of justice. When Mr. Grassby was subsequently charged, critical evidence was withheld from the court.

Mr. Gary Sturgess, who became the architect of the N.S.W. Independent Commission against Corruption, supported Mr. Provost's account, and described Mr. Grassby's support of the Calabrian Mafia as despicable and disgusting.

In retrospect the membership of the Whitlam government can, with some few exceptions, be seen to be a rogues' gallery. Critical ministers included Mr. Al Grassby (a corrupt Mafia figure), Dr. Jim Cairns (a Soviet agent of influence (3)), Mr. Lionel Murphy (who consorted with criminals and who secretly assisted the Yugoslav secret service) and Mr. Rex Connor (who involved that government in corrupt financial dealings).

At the centre of his government was Mr. Gough Whitlam himself. There has been a regrettable tendency for Labor enthusiasts not to acknowledge the great defects of his government or his own even greater personal defects. An independent observer could hardly deny that Mr. Whitlam is not a psychologically balanced person and that his profound psychological defects made him singularly unfitted for any leadership role, or, indeed, for any responsible role. His manic behaviour upon the steps of Parliament House when he was dismissed in 1975 and on subsequent occasions ought to be accepted by all as a conclusive indication of his defects. (4)

The Labor Party has always engaged in the mythologising of key leaders and in a search for authentic heroes. It has found none. The controversial Dr. Bert Evatt was revealed to have been increasingly insane during his public life, and a ruthless and cynical self-promoter. The Lionel Murphy myth has failed on the disclosure of his criminal activities. The promotion of John Curtin, en faute de mieux, has been unsuccessful, as Curtin has been progressively disclosed to have been weak, bibulous and vacillating and to have consciously permitted Australian defence forces abroad to be effectively betrayed by left-wing unions on the waterfront who prevented the shipment of munitions, equipment and urgently needed supplies to them.

The time has come for members of the Labor Party to recognise that Mr. Whitlam was not a hero, but a cause of shame: an irresponsible megalomaniac whose manic propensities are clearly evident in television and video footage of him at critical times in his political career. The parallels with Dr. Bert Evatt are close. The difference is that Dr. Evatt never became Prime Minister so as to enable his manic designs to be perpetrated on his country, as they were on his party, which he kept out of office for twenty years. But Mr. Whitlam did become Prime Minister, and the most unbalanced that Australia has ever had.

(1.) Keith Moor, "Grassby Crimes Cover-up", The Herald Sun, 9 May 2005. This article is an example of objective and high-quality journalism that is unfortunately lacking in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald, where the journalistic staff are almost without exception partisan supporters of the Labor Party.

(2.) For example, Mr. Grassby circulated a document known by him to be false, in which it was alleged that the murderer of Mr. Mackay was his wife, and not a Mafia hit-man.

(3.) A detailed analysis of Dr. Cairns was published in National Observer, April 2005, Issue 64 at pages 52-63.

(4.) Any residual doubts about Mr. Whitlam's lack of honesty are dispelled by Sir David Smith's account "Setting the Record Straight", published in National Observer, April 2005, Issue 64, at pages 10-24.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Edward Gough Whitlam, political aspects of Australia
Publication:National Observer - Australia and World Affairs
Article Type:Editorial
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Dec 22, 2005
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