On conscription, Menzies and Curtin

Gerard Henderson writes: Re. “Hendo fluffs it again” (Monday)

It’s great to know that David Salter reads my Weekend Australian  column. Contrary to Mr Salter’s view, I stand by my claim that, in 1964, Robert Menzies was the first and only prime minister to implement “conscription for overseas military service”.

It is true that, in January 1943, Labor prime minister John Curtin announced a limited form of conscription. In his official war history The Government and the People: 1942-1945, Paul Hasluck described this decision as amounting to “conscription for overseas service within the limits of the South-West Pacific Area and, as Curtin subsequently explained, for the war only”.

This was a very limited geographic area and part of a defence of Australia strategy.  The Curtin government never contemplated sending Australian conscripts overseas outside of what it regarded as the Australian theatre of war. However, the Menzies government did precisely this in the mid-1960s.

On the Amber Harrison case

Les Heimann writes: Re. “The Turnbull connection: judge in the Amber Harrison case keeps powerful company” (Monday)

I write this not knowing the result of the Amber Harrison judgement although I am certain it will not favour Harrison.

All this is absolutely appalling. Why do we accept a bunch of wicked white hairs clubbing a woman scorned simply because she fought back? 

Equally mean and dirty are the type who put on the front page the plight of AFL executives, their girlfriends, wives and children. Shame on these purveyors of dirt and misery. Private sexual liaisons are simply none of anyone else’s business — particularly when it harms the innocent families and when all the men and women are open eyed about what they are doing. Absolutely NOT the same as Amber Harrison. What a sorry bunch of hypocrites.

Peter Fray

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