New moves towards Australian Iraq inquiry

by Andrew Mason

A group of leading Australians have now started a campaign to gain a full inquiry into their country’s participation in the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Their reasoning for this move has been set out in a newly published booklet – Why Did We Go to War in Iraq? A call for an Australian inquiry, and the group has commissioned a comprehensive website to make their case and launch a wider appeal aimed at gaining support for their movement, the Iraq War Inquiry Group.

The membership of the group, according to their ‘who we are’ page, currently includes:

•Paul Barratt, former Deputy Secretary, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade; former Secretary, Department of Defence
•Rod Barton, former Director of Intelligence (Science and Technology), Defence Intelligence Organisation; former UN Weapons Inspector in Iraq.
•Dr Alison Broinowski, former diplomat; Visiting Fellow, Department of Asian Studies, ANU; Honorary Research Fellow, University of Wollongong
•Adjunct Professor Richard Broinowski, Media and Communications, University of Sydney; former diplomat.
•Michelle Fahy, editor and writer
•Andrew Farran, International Lawyer; Business Consultant. Formerly with Departments of External Affairs and Defence, and Law Faculty Monash University
•General (ret’d) Peter Gration, former Chief of the Australian Defence Force
•Dr Jenny Grounds, President, Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia)
•Professor John Langmore, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Melbourne; former MP for Fraser; former director of UN Division of Social Policy and Development, and representative of the ILO to the UN
•Edward Santow, CEO, Public Interest Advocacy Centre
•Lt Gen (ret’d) John Sanderson, former Chief of the Australian Army, and former Governor of WA.
•Professor Gerry Simpson, Professor of International Law, University of Melbourne
•Professor Richard Tanter, School of Social and Political Studies, University of Melbourne; Senior Research Associate, Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability
•Professor Ramesh Thakur, Professor of International Relations, Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University; Adjunct Professor, Institute for Ethics, Governance and Law, Griffith University; former United Nations Assistant Secretary-General
•Dr Sue Wareham, Vice-President, Medical Association for Prevention of War
•Garry Woodard, former ambassador; Senior Fellow, Dept of Politics, University of Melbourne
•Tim Wright, Australian director, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons

2 comments to this article

  1. Bobm

    on August 17, 2012 at 4:45 pm -

    Here is the Sydney Morning Herald report on this proposal:
    What is most striking about the nay-sayers’ stance is that it is suggested that “lessons have been learned”, and there are more important things to worry about, now; but these lessons are undefined…
    A crucial comment refers to the capacity of the PM [Australian, here] to go to war without proper parliamentary scrutiny, an issue that Chilcot is itching to address, unless I entirely misjudge the man.
    Interesting that “Bini” is getting flustered over cognate matters:

  2. chris lamb

    on August 18, 2012 at 9:42 am -

    On the question of Australian investigations/reports on the 2003 Iraq invasion, here is one from 2004 which looks at the role of the Australian intelligence agencies in assessing Iraqi WMD. It contains some interesting material about failures in intelligence-