In October I blogged on Jim Cairns, the doyen of the left and hero to the Anti-Vietnam war protesters. Wayne Wood, at Troppo Armadillo obviously a member of one of the above groups, took me to task for blaming all Vietnam Veterans ills on Cairns. Wayne muddies the waters with this statement.
Jim Cairns was an average politician who, after spending so long in opposition and without any useful role models, cocked up his stint as Treasurer and did pretty much what any of us would have done if a Junie wiggled her bum in our face. To try and make anything more out of Cairns’s life is simply beating up the sad tale of what can happen to an otherwise smart bloke when he tries to live out his sexual fantasy.All of the left-wing and most of Australia’s apathetic, ‘Commercial TV news educated’ populace ignores the basic unpleasant truth of Cairn’s life. ..otherwise smart bloke living out sexual fantasies is one thing but being a communist, wanting and pursuing a communist victory in Vietnam to the disadvantage (read death and wounds) of Australians and being Deputy PM while also the President of the World Peace Council is another matter entirely. I have no problem with Wayne it’s just that he is symptomatic of Australians who ignored the truth on the Anti-Vietnam campaign. Disagree? – No worries; the right to dissent? It’s yours; March through Melbourne’s streets in protest using your given rights to peaceful assembly? -Go for it. Act as Chairman of the Local Soviet Union Peace body while Deputy PM? uh uh. Not on. Travel to the USSR and give them moral support and encourage more arms to kill fellow Australians? No – not included in our given rights. Invite a delegation of North Vietnamese industrial leaders to Australia while our wounded are still recovering in hospital? Likewise – very tacky. John Ballantine, in this morning’s Australian Inquirer does a good job of outing Cairns and his Soviet sympathies
In November 1970, on returning from a visit to the Soviet Union, he declared he had found no more suppression of civil rights in Russia than in many aspects of Australian life.What a startling statement. In November 1970 I was on patrol in Vietnam along with thousands of other Aussies. Cairns would have been an Opposition front bencher that year. How cute.
The Melbourne congress subsequently evolved into a more permanent body called the Congress for International Co-operation and Disarmament. Under Cairns and Goldbloom’s leadership, the CICD played a big part in mobilising the vast nationwide anti-war protest movement that became known as the Vietnam moratorium. It made history on May 8, 1970, when 75,000 protesters – one of Australia’s biggest public demonstrations – occupied the streets of Melbourne, bringing the city to a standstill.The only group to receive advantage from the Moratoriums were the communists. The only group to be disadvantaged – the Digger. Do I have an axe to grind? You betcha! Will I forgive and forget? No way.