Rod Kemp’s certain appointment to Paris — this is confirmed by Crikey’s own correspondent deep in the bowels of DFAT — is causing ructions in the stellar department . Senior diplomats (including the mole) are wondering if they will ever get another posting.  We understand the current ambassador in Paris, the very efficient and beautifully French speaking Penny Wensley, is as non-plussed as Peter Woolcott and John Dauth before him (who also had to vacate for a senator).  Howard isn’t as restricted in announcing this appointment as he is with Amanda, who just wont budge; Kemp was saying last year he’d see out his full term but then had a volte-face, as the French say. There’s no doubt, our mole reports, that the French have been approached to accept the Kemp nomination and he, like his colleagues, wonder just what it is that Rod has done to warrant the appointment.  We do know that Alexander Downer had to read about Amanda’s appointment in Crikey and we wonder if he’s been told about the Kemp outrage — the mole’s word, not ours.  The three political appointments — Hill, Vanstone and now Kemp — are bad enough, but considering the experience and efficiency of those professionals shunted out to make room for the Howard appointees makes it all the worse. The feeling of declassement pervading DFAT is one of, shall we say, desagrement.

Get Crikey for $1 a week.

Lockdowns are over and BBQs are back! At last, we get to talk to people in real life. But conversation topics outside COVID are so thin on the ground.

Join Crikey and we’ll give you something to talk about. Get your first 12 weeks for $12 to get stories, analysis and BBQ stoppers you won’t see anywhere else.

Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
12 weeks for just $12.