Letters to the Editor
Volume 48 Number 2

Opposition to a war

Dennis Callaghan writes about his role fighting in Vietnam in 1968 (ANU Reporter, Autumn 2017).
At that time, hundreds of thousands of other Australians marched against the invasion of Vietnam. I and many other ANU students proudly joined in those protests.
The Labor Leader of the Opposition, Arthur Calwell, in one of the finest speeches in Australia’s political history, fiercely attacked the invasion of Vietnam while offering unqualified support for Australian servicemen. As Arthur Calwell accurately predicted, the war was a complete failure and was catastrophic for the people of Vietnam.
Dennis Callaghan writes that he was appalled to read that an ANU student supported the National Liberation Front. Contrary to Dennis Callaghan’s view I, like Arthur Calwell, see no inconsistency between opposition to an immoral and unjust war and support for members of the Australian Defence Forces.
Ernst Willheim, LLM ‘69


The caption to the photograph of former ASIO Director-General Harvey Barnett (ANU Reporter, Autumn 2017) says it was taken in 1951. Plainly, this is wrong – in 1951 Bennett was 26 years old. From the subsequent number plate in the photo I would guess the photo dates from the mid-1980s.
Stephen Brown, LLB ’65, Forrest, ACT
(Well-spotted, photo was taken in 1981.)

Mount Stromlo

I am an ANU graduate and thus from time to time receive the ANU Reporter. In the latest issue (Vol 47, No 4) I was interested to read the article about the reopening of the visitor centre at Mt Stromlo as it has some similarities with the public-facing work that we do here at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, UK.
It was also interesting to read the article about the fishing boat turned WW2 raider vessel Krait. I was the inaugural Director of the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour, Sydney.
Krait is owned by the Australian War Memorial but since 1987 it has been cared for and displayed at ANMM in Sydney. I was surprised that Ross Peake’s article made no reference to this.
Regretfully I suspect that your readers will assume that the vessel has long since been broken up or otherwise destroyed whereas, in reality, it’s still in the water and can be seen and boarded by the public.
Dr Kevin Fewster, Director, Royal Museums, Greenwich