Launch of Law, Politics and Intelligence: A Life of Robert Hope
ASPI is delighted to invite you to attend the launch of Law, politics and intelligence: A life of Robert Hope by Dr Peter Edwards AM. The book will be launched by the Hon Margaret Stone AO, Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security.
Justice Robert Marsden Hope presided over two landmark royal commissions into Australia’s intelligence and security agencies in the 1970s and 1980s. Since then, there has been considerable comment on issues surrounding these agencies, including the powers they have been granted under more than 70 new pieces of national security legislation; the scope of the new Department of Home Affairs; police raids on the ABC offices and a News Corp journalist’s home; the role of the parliamentary committee on intelligence and security; and the prosecutions of ‘Witness K’ and his lawyer. These and other issues all come back to the age-old question: how does a society strike the right balance between national security and civil liberties?
Peter Edwards’s new book, Law, politics and intelligence: A life of Robert Hope, offers a historian’s perspective. Hope was commissioned by prime ministers Gough Whitlam, Malcolm Fraser and Bob Hawke to conduct three major inquiries, two of which were royal commissions, that transformed the structure, legislation, roles and doctrines of the intelligence agencies, establishing the framework within which they operated, with bi-partisan support, until 2017. Edwards argues that it is only by examining the principles and structures that Hope laid down that we can understand what is currently at stake.
Peter Edwards has published extensively, mostly on Australian foreign, defence and strategic policies and policymaking. His other books include Australia and the Vietnam War and Arthur Tange: Last of the Mandarins. His books have won several awards.
A drinks and canape reception will conclude the event.