Consensus defies Bush Doctrine

A letter to the Australian public

WE, the undersigned, are former Governor-General, Prime Ministers, Leader of the Opposition, Chiefs of the Defence Force and other holders of senior military office, including the current President of the Returned and Services League of Australia.

We either represented opposing sides of politics or were appointed to our positions by governments of differing persuasions.

We would hold varying views on many issues in the public arena but we join in writing this letter because we share a deeply held conviction on a matter which we believe is of the most profound importance.

We put this conviction directly and unequivocally: it would constitute a failure of the duty of government to protect the integrity and ensure the security of our nation to commit any Australian forces in support of a United States military offensive against Iraq without the backing of a specific United Nations Security Council resolution.

  • Bill Hayden AC, Governor-General of Australia, 1989-1996
  • The Hon E.G. Whitlam AC QC, Prime Minister of Australia, 1972-75
  • The Rt Hon J.M. Fraser AC, Prime Minister of Australia, 1975-1983
  • The Hon R.J. Hawke AC, Prime Minister of Australia, 1983-1991
  • Dr John Hewson, Leader of the Opposition, 1990-1994
  • General Peter Gration AC OBE, Chief of the Australian Defence Force, 1987-1993
  • Admiral Alan Beaumont AC, Chief of the Australian Defence Force, 1993-1995
  • Admiral Mike Hudson AC, Chief of the Australian Naval Staff, 1985-1991
  • Major General Peter Phillips AO MC, National President of the Returned and Services League of Australia.

This letter was published in Australia's major newspapers on 26 September 2002.


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