1986-87 Hawke Government Cabinet Papers Released

Cabinet Papers from the Hawke government’s second and third terms of 1986-87 have been released by the National Archives.

Hawke Cabinet

Former Senator Gareth Evans, a Cabinet minister of the time, described the Hawke government, then in its fourth and fifth years, as a “government pretty much at the top of its form”.

Evans was Minister for Resources and Energy in the second Hawke government until 1987 and Minister for Transport and Communications after the government’s re-election for a third term on July 11, 1987. Now Honorary Professorial Fellow at the Australian National University, Evans spoke at the release of the Cabinet Papers and took questions from journalists.

Dr. Jim Stokes, National Archives historical consultant, presented a paper on the background to the political events of 1986-87. The full text and audio appears below.

  • National Archives – 1986 and 1987 Cabinet Papers
  • Listen to introductions from Len Marsden and Senator George Brandis at the Cabinet Papers release (8m)

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Text of remarks by Gareth Evans at the National Archives release of the 1986-87 Cabinet Papers.

Evans

  • Listen to Gareth Evans (21m)

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  • Listen to Gareth Evans respond to questions (26m)

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Thank you very much Len Marsden – and especially to Jim Stokes for a terrifically professional career: every best wish for the future after a fabulous contribution to this enterprise for so long. [Read more…]


Gareth Evans Maintains The Rage

By Michelle Grattan, University of Canberra

Sir John Kerr was the worst of Australia’s Governors-General and his legacy was to delay the emergence of an Australian republic, former Labor minister Gareth Evans will tell a seminar today.

Professor Evans will say that Sir John, who dismissed Gough Whitlam from the prime ministership, had a “catastrophic” tenure.

It was not marked by dignity, competence or effectiveness. He showed “far less dispassionate non-partisanship than any politician incumbent of the office [of Governor General].”

Professor Evans, Chancellor of the Australian National University, will open the seminar on “Values and Visions of Australia’s Governors-General,” at ANU. [Read more…]


Gillard Releases National Security Strategy

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has released the government’s National Security Strategy.

In a speech at the Australian National University, Gillard said the strategy “highlights the dramatic economic and strategic shift towards the Asia-Pacific region and provides a blueprint for national security over the next decade”.

Gillard

  • Listen to former Foreign Minister Gareth Evans introduce Gillard (5m)

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  • Listen to Gillard’s speech

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  • Download: Strong and Secure: A Strategy for Australia’s National Security (PDF)

Gillard said, “we are transitioning from one decade, the decade of 9/11, to a post 9/11 era where some risks and challenges endure and others are evolving rapidly.”

The National Security document says the key national security risks faced by Australia are:

  • Espionage and foreign interference
  • Instability in developing and fragile states
  • Malicious cyber activity
  • Proliferation of weapons of mass destruction
  • Serious and organised crime
  • State-based conflict or coercion significantly affecting Australia’s industries
  • Terrorism and violent extremism

Media release from Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

A Strategy for Australia’s National Security

Australia’s first National Security Strategy highlights the dramatic economic and strategic shift towards the Asia-Pacific region and provides a blueprint for national security over the next decade.

Complementing the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper, the National Security Strategy will ensure Australia takes advantage of the opportunities of the Asian Century whilst focussing national security efforts on the risks and challenges that come with change in the region. [Read more…]


Laurie Oakes, Cheryl Kernot And The Unreported Story

For some years now, Australian media outlets have refused to report widespread rumours concerning the private life of Cheryl Kernot.

KernotThis claim is made by Laurie Oakes in an article in today’s edition of The Bulletin.

Oakes refers to the publication this week of Kernot’s book, Speaking For Myself Again, a title the veteran Canberra journalist says should be Making Excuses For Myself Again. [Read more…]


Whoops… Gareth Evans Booked for Drink Driving

Gareth EvansFormer Foreign Minister and Deputy Opposition Leader, Gareth Evans, was booked for exceeding Victoria’s drink driving laws last night.

Evans registered 0.074 when stopped in the Melbourne suburb of Kew. He was given an on-the-spot fine of $300 and had his licence automatically suspended for 6 months.

Evans is due to take up a new appointment as Chief Executive of the International Crisis Group early in the new year. Presumably, he will not need a driving licence in Brussels.


The Forgotten Poll: By-Election in Holt

Largely overlooked in today’s focus on the two referendums is the by-election in the Dandenong-based federal electorate of Holt.

The by-election has been caused by the resignation of Gareth Evans who recently failed in his bid to become Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, UNESCO.

The Labor Party holds Holt with a margin of 15.11%. Gareth Evans secured a primary vote of 59.78% at the October 1998 election. He obtained 65.11% of the two-party-preferred vote.

The Liberal Party is not contesting the by-election.



Gareth Evans: Politics And The Media Circus

This is the full text of a speech given by Gareth Evans, then Deputy Leader of the Opposition, to the Australian Institute of Political Science (AIPS) 65th Anniversary Dinner in Sydney.

Gareth EvansThe organisers of tonight’s 65th Anniversary Dinner were on to something in making the specific theme of this evening the relationship between politics and the media. We needed something to divert us from the orgy of self-congratulation in which Institute members would otherwise have indulged, and this topic was well calculated to provide it.

I don’t want to spend much time making self-evident points about the inherent importance of the media to the political process – although this is the soothing and stroking part that won’t get me into any trouble! Whether we like it or not – and most political practitioners have very mixed views on the subject, probably varying with the number of bruises we are currently nursing – it’s impossible to imagine a democratic polity being conducted in this or any other country around the world without the media. [Read more…]


Gareth Evans On ALP Philosophy

This is the Introduction to Chapter 1 of the ALP’s Draft National Platform by Gareth Evans.

Evans is the ALP’s Deputy Leader. The ALP Platform is under consideration at the party’s National Conference in Hobart.

One of the most extraordinary and marvellous things about this Labor Party and movement of ours throughout our long history has been our capacity to renew ourselves.

We started out as essentially a rural-based workingman’s party in the early decades; became a mainstream industrial labour party in the 1930s and 40s and 50s; and became in turn a more self consciously broad-based social democratic party in the 1960s and 70s. [Read more…]


Kernot Quits Democrats To Join Labor

Senator Cheryl Kernot defected from the Australian Democrats to join the ALP on October 15, 1997.

Kernot resigned as leader of the Democrats, as a member of the party, and from the Senate.

She said she stood ready to contest a Liberal-held marginal seat for the ALP. At the 1998 federal election, Kernot narrowly won election to the Queensland electorate of Dickson. She was defeated at the 2004 election.

Transcript of Cheryl Kernot’s resignation press conference.

Cheryl KernotI have called this press conference today to inform you of my decision to resign as Leader of the Australian Democrats, and as a member of both the party and the Senate.

I fully appreciate this decision will come as a shock to members of a party I have served for 17 years. But it is a decision which, in the past 18 months, has grown unavoidable for two reasons. One, my personal and growing sense of outrage at the damage being done to Australia by the Howard Government. And two, my concern that from my position in the Senate I had a limited capacity to minimise that damage.

The change of Government in 1996 and the actions of the Howard administration since, especially the first Costello Budget, have been a defining episode for me. I have reached the conclusion that, for me, the imperative at the next Federal election lies not in battling to extract a share of the third party vote to keep balance of power in the Senate. [Read more…]


Kim Beazley’s ALP Shadow Ministry 1996

Following the defeat of the Keating government in March 1996, Kim Beazley was elected leader of the ALP on March 19, 1996.

  1. The Hon. Kim Christian Beazley MP
    Leader of the Opposition
  2. The Hon. Gareth John Evans QC, MP
    Deputy Leader of the Opposition
    Shadow Treasurer
  3. Senator the Hon. John Philip Faulkner
    Leader of the Opposition in the Senate
    Shadow Minister for Social Security
  4. Senator the Hon. Nicholas John Sherry
    Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate
    Shadow Minister for Finance and Superannuation
  5. [Read more…]