I see that Gough Whitlam, Prime Minister of Australia from 1972 – 75, died earlier this week. He was famously sacked by the Governor-General, Sir John Kerr. The official reason was that the House of Representatives in Canberra, which Whitlam’s Labour Party did not control, refused to pass a budget. But like much official history this is probably poppycock.
Whitlam was deposed 24 hours before he was due to reveal in Parliament the existence of an extensive CIA network in Australia, ranging from a powerful listening station to a list of agents right through government. Sir John Kerr was a CIA man and he made sure that Whitlam was ousted. It ain’t just Slavs, Arabs and Central American peasants who will have their leaders chosen for them.
Now don’t get me wrong. Whitlam was a man of the Left. His one good act was to remove Australian troops from Vietnam, but this was more than outweighed by his many other follies, the worst of which being final burial of the White Australia policy. So on balance it was a Good Thing to get rid, but it’s always necessary to get the record straight.