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Post Traumatic Stress - PSD


Chapter 7- Post Traumatic Stress - PSD


It is unbelievable for the Liberal-Country Coalition to have placed Australian troops in life-threatening circumstances as they did for their political point-scoring. To have done this while trading with the enemy, using so many young lives here in AustraliaNew Zealand and the USA as collateral damage, is a betrayal of the worse possible kind.

Possibly worse is Australia's bureaucrats continued to trade with China for so long after being aware China was assisting North Vietnam (the enemy) while that enemy was killing our youths and the youths of our allies. 

However, one thing must never be forgotten: The Hon. Malcolm Fraser, Prime Minister of Australia, bridged a gap that the South Vietnamese has always praised Mr Fraser and the government for helping them have a life of meaning. 

 The Fraser legacy - refugees, asylum seekers and ... - ParlInfo shows

Enter Post Traumatic Stress - PSD

So chronic and serious were my telephone faults in early 1993, (see Evidence - Australian Federal Police Investigations) that Telstra threatened (the first of two series of threats) that I had to register my ongoing telephone/faxing problems with their outside lawyers or they would refuse to regard my complaints as genuine.

By July/August 1993, the communications regulator was becoming concerned at Telstra’s approach to our complaints; particularly their continual use of outside solicitors. In October 1993, while the regulator was negotiating with Telstra for a commercial settlement proposal to be put in place for the COT members, the regulator’s chairman made it clear to Telstra’s commercial division that the regulator would not be happy if Telstra’s solicitors were used in future COT matters. This request was ignored however and Telstra continued to insist that I register my complaints through their solicitors until 28 January 1994.

Later, when Telstra submitted their defence of my arbitration, I learned that Telstra’s solicitors also acted as Telstra’s defence counsel. By this time, I was able to provide the arbitrator with clear proof that Telstra had provided incorrect written statements to the regulator and me, with regard to incidents that occurred between January and August of 1993. The arbitrator would not investigate this information.

On 18 August 1993, The Hon David Hawker MP again wrote to me, noting:

“Further to your conversations with my electorate staff last week and today I am enclosing a copy of the correspondence I have received from Mr Harvey Parker, Group Managing Director of Commercial and Consumer division of Telecom.

“I wrote to him outlining the problems of a number of Telecom customers in the Western Districts, including the extensive problems you have been experiencing.” (See Arbitrator File No/77 and Arbitrator File No/82)

Absent Justice - My Story

Children's lives could be at risk

Comments made from the Herald Sun newspaper dated 30 August 1993, confirm just how damaging some of these newspaper articles were to my already ailing business with statements like:

“The Royal Children’s Hospital has told a holiday camp operators in Portland that it cannot send chronically ill children there because of Telecom’s poor phone service. The hospital has banned trips after fears that the children’s lives could be at risk in a medical emergency if the telephone service to the Portland camp continued to malfunction”.

The centre’s stand follows letters from schools, community groups, companies and individuals who have complained about the phone service at Portland’s Cape Bridgewater Holiday camp.”

Youths from the Royal Children’s Centre for Adolescent Health, who were suffering from “chronic illnesses”, visited the camp earlier this year.   

Group leader Ms Louise Rolls said in a letter to the camp the faulty phones had endangered lives and the hospital would not return to the camp unless the phone service could be guaranteed” (Arbitrator File No/90)

On page 11 in the government's secret findings dated 4 March 1994 (see AUSTEL’s Adverse Findings), concerning the Children's Hospital saga it is noted:

"... the camp experienced major problems with incoming and outgoing calls causing stress  to parents children and the hospital. During one medical emergency had to contact Portland Base Hospital via Smith’s Facsimile line". 

After I received the above letter from the children’s hospital, I attempted to telephone a Melbourne clinical psychologist Dr Burnard for support, only to have my conversation with his receptionist interrupted three times by my ongoing telephone faults. On each occasion, as was previously expereiced by the youths from the Children's Hospital: the phone conversation dropped out within one or two minutes. Later I received a letter from his office, saying:

 “I am writing to you to confirm details of telephone conversation difficulties experienced between this office and our residence mid-morning this day, 5 May 1993. At approximately 11.30 am today Mr Alan Smith telephoned this office requesting to speak with Don Burnard. Mr Burnard was not available to take his call. During this time the telephone cut out three times. Each time Mr Smith telephoned back to continue the call “. 

“All of these clients have been subjected to persistent environmental stress as a result of constant pressure in their business and erratic patterns of change in the functioning of their telephones which were essential to the success of their businesses."

I later discussed with Dr Burnard using one of the two Telstra telephone boxes located outside Portland Post Office (20 Kilometres away) that my China flash-backs had surfaced again. At Dr Burnard's suggestion, I contacted a local Portland psychologist to discuss how the stress of my ongoing telephone problems had regenerated my Red China flashbacks. 

It was therefore, important to mention here Dr Burnard and Ms Davis's assessment of the stress we COT Cases had suffered due to the constant pressure of trying to run a telephone-dependent business without a telephone.  This stress brought back my Red Guard - The Peoples of the Republic of China flashbacks, and therefore, it was necessary to introduce my Peoples Republic of China issues on this website (see Chapter 2 - Viet Cong - Australian Wheat

Here I was in mid 1993 five years after I purchased the business and nothing had changed either with my business or the businesses operated by the other three COT Cases. 

I must jump to the SENATE official Hansard – Parliament of Australia, 1997 because after Telstra technicians left their briefcase at my premises (see below) without realizing it at that time, the contents of the briefcase triggered the return of my PSD and from that time onwards, after I was forced under threat from Telstra that if I did not register my phone faults with their lawyer, Denise McBurnie of Freehill Hollingdale & Page Telstra would not investigate my complaints.

Absent Justice - Australian Senate

In fact, figures running into the billions have also been quoted.

Starting on page 5163, this link > SENATE official Hansard – Parliament of Australia, shows Telstra employees rorted millions upon millions of dollars from Telstra shareholders: i.e., the government and Australian citizens, who then owned Telstra. The pressure Senators Alston and Boswell applied, for a Senate investigation into the Casualties of Telstra (COT cases) phone fiascos, was one of the reasons Telstra agreed to settle the COT cases’ issues in a proposed Fast Track Settlement Proposal signed by Telstra and the four claimants in the third week of November 1993. Telstra, it seemed, could not afford a further investigation into its operation: NSW was not the only state where this rorting, and others, was taking place. Many people made threats against the COT cases because our persistence, in order to gain fully functional phone systems, was about to expose other unethical behaviour at Telstra, including at management level. The fact that both the Telstra CEO and board knew millions upon millions of dollars (again, see 5163 of SENATE official Hansard) were being unlawfully syphoned from the government coffers is unbelievable. In fact, figures running into the billions have also been quoted.

Perhaps even more unbelievable is that the COT cases received no recognition, from either the government or Telstra, for our stand for honesty and truth; instead, we have been treated in the worst possible way, labelled as vexatious litigants and our lives have been ruined, simply because we believed that what we were doing would eventually benefit all Australians.

COT members pleaded with the Telecommunication Industry Ombudsman (TIO) not to force us into arbitration with Telstra whilst Telstra was under investigation by the Australian Federal Police for unauthorised interception of COT cases’ telephone conversations – this was undemocratic. The TIO ignored our concerns. What we did not know, was that the TIO and arbitrator had secretly agreed with Telstra to use their drafted arbitration agreement and NOT the independent agreement the government was assured would be used to assess our matters. Even worse, although the arbitrator wrote to the TIO, advising him the arbitration agreement was not credible to use in the arbitrations, it was still used. This letter from the arbitrator was then concealed from the claimants during their designated appeal processes, regardless of its value.

Even before the arbitrator brought down his first deliberation, both he and the TIO were warned, on 18 April 1995, that there were “forces at work” derailing the arbitrations see Prologue / Chapter 1 - The collusion continues. They both ignored this written advice. This letter to the TIO, from the arbitration project manager, was also concealed from the claimants during the same designated appeal process.

Absent Justice - 12 Remedies Persued - 2

Stand-over tactics and threats used against the COT cases

Both Telstra’s 14 April 1994 letter, to the Australian Federal Police (AFP), that admits at least one Telstra employee was intercepting my telephone conversations, and my 9 September 1994 response, concerning this unauthorised interception over an extended period, are now stamped “Protected AFP” material. The > SENATE official Hansard clearly refers to Telstra’s conduct, stand-over tactics and threats towards the COT cases. The Senate Hansard, AFP transcripts (of conversations with me concerning these threats) and the Commonwealth Ombudsman’s records, all confirm Telstra carried out those threats against me; yet neither the arbitrator nor the TIO addressed this during my arbitration. Why has no one ever addressed this unethical conduct publicly? Why is there no record, in the arbitrator’s award, exposing these threats? Why was Telstra allowed to make these threats and commit similar unlawful acts against the COT cases during their arbitrations? Neither the TIO nor arbitrator came to my aid or demanded answers to why a corporation can take control over arbitrations in a government-endorsed process. This has been the hardest thing for the COT cases to accept, after having given so much to the people of Australia.

Worse, however, the day before the Senate committee uncovered this COT Strategy , they also told under oath, on 24 June 1997 see:- pages 36 and 38 Senate - Parliament of Australia/from an ex-Telstra employee and then-Whistle-blower, Lindsay White, that, while he was assessing the relevance of the technical information which had been requested by the COT claimants, he advised the Committee that:

Mr White "In the first induction - and I was one of the early ones, and probably the earliest in the Freehill's (Telstra’s Lawyers) area - there were five complaints. They were Garms, Gill and Smith, and Dawson and Schorer. My induction briefing was that we - we being Telecom - had to stop these people to stop the floodgates being opened."

Senator O’Chee then asked Mr White - "What, stop them reasonably or stop them at all costs - or what?"

Mr White responded by saying - "The words used to me in the early days were we had to stop these people at all costs".

Senator Schacht also asked Mr White - "Can you tell me who, at the induction briefing, said 'stopped at all costs" .(See Front Page Part One File No/6)

It is clear from Mr White's statement he identified me as one of the five COT claimants that Telstra had singled out to be ‘stopped at all costs’ from proving their my against Telstra’. One of the named Peter's in this Senate Hansard is the same Peter who swore under oath, in his witness statement to the arbitrator that the testing at my business premises had met all of AUSTEL’s specifications, when it is clear from  that Telstra’s own Customer Call Analysis System (CCAS) data for 29 September 1994 show NONE of the mandatory required 20-tests calls to each of my service lines 055 267 267055 267230 and 055 267260 were generated into my business and held open for the required period of 120-seconds for each completed call. In simple words, the SVT process at my business was not carried out according to the government communications regulatory mandatory specifications. Telstra is fully aware Peter (on page 38 of this Hansard) received advice from AUSTEL, on 11 October and 16 November 1994, regarding the Service Verification Tests (SVT) being grossly deficient. AUSTEL demanded Telstra advise what it intended doing about this deficiency see Telstra's Falsified SVT Report). No second SVT tests ever took place at my business during my arbitration. However, in November 2002 (eight months after I sold the business) Telstra tested the business for the new owners, concluded the wiring, cabling and the Telstra-installed infrastructure was corroded and the whole holiday camp was rewired.

This is the same Peter who somehow had the power to direct a Government Regulator regarding who they could release this known faulty SVT information to and who they could not release it to even though the Government Regulator (AUSTEL) knew that the inaccurate SVT results were being used to support Telstra’s arbitration defence of at least four COT Cases claims (which included me)

This same Peter refused to conduct any sort of testing at my premises. Both Peter and David Reid (an ex-Telstra technician, and now with Lane Telecommunications) were present to investigate on-site telecommunication arbitration information. Lindsay White, whistleblower, admitted, under oath to senators, that Peter said I was to be stopped – at all cost – from proving my claim. Peter was able to pressure David Reid, part of the allegedly independent arbitration resource unit, not to test my three service lines that were experiencing ONGOING problems when they visited my business on 6 April 1995. From what happened on this day, it is apparent the government-endorsed arbitration process was designed – NOT to assist the COT cases in proving their claims – but to destroy the credibility of the COT cases’ claims in order to sell off the Telstra network, no matter how degraded the arbitration process found it was.

After viewing the Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp (SVT) CCAS data dated 29 September 1994 (see Telstra's Falsified SVT Report) Brian Hodge, B Tech, MBA (B.C. Telecommunications), on 27 July 2007, prepared a report and on page 23, (see File - 486 AS-CAV Exhibit 470 to 486 concludes:

"It is my opinion that the reports submitted to Austel on this testing programme was flawed, erroneous, fictitious, fraudulent & fabricated, as it is clear that no such testing has taken place as Telstra’s own call charge system DOES NOT record any such activities. Therefore the results are flawed or did not occur"   

Didn't the statements made under oath by Lindsay White to the Senate Estimates Committee on 24 June 1997, mean anything at all regarding the advice he received from this Peter that we FIVE COT cases had to be stopped at all cost from proving issues such as the falsified arbitration SVT witness statements to the arbitrator (see Telstra's Falsified SVT Report)?

Absent Justice -  Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp and Residence

The phone system in Cape Bridgewater was corrupted 

In February 1988, when I started to operate the Cape Bridgewater holiday camp and convention centre, doing business via the internet and email was not an option, the landline phone system was the only way to stay in operation. In my case, I employed phone booking agents in both country Victoria and Melbourne and South Australia. AUSTEL, the then government communications regulator and my Federal Member of Parliament, The Hon David Hawker MP, were aware that even those added lifelines did little to help me survive at Cape Bridgewater. Those three booking agents themselves often wrote of the problems they had with relaying phone calls back to me of people which me to confirm their bookings. That is how bad the phone system was in Cape Bridgewater.

There were approximately 120 residents living in Cape Bridgewater when I took over the holiday camp, which equated to sixty families plus their teenage children who spent more time on the phone than their mums and dads. The RAX unmanned roadside switching station had eight final selectors, so if four lines were being used at any one time between those 120-plus residences that left only four vacant lines available to ring in or out for the remaining 116 residences in holiday time then no calls over several days was a regular occurrence.

The process of doing business on the internet or via email had not started to come into its own until the late 1990s. The old landline and sending mail via Australia Post were all that was available to me which from 1980s to 1995 was the only accomodation centre in Cape Bridgewater.  Had we COT Cases been operating our companies during the period where emails and online advice was so readily available, then the phone and faxing problems we suffered would not have affected our business losses as they did. We did not get an efficient mobile phone system into Cape Bridgewater until 2004 and even then drop-outs were a common occurance.  

If you have ever experienced ongoing telephone problems, either on your landline or mobile phone, then you will understand why I sometimes feel I have lived through a nightmare — I experienced several different types of problems, recorded messages telling incoming callers the business was not connected, or when it did connect withing ten to fifteen seconds, the line would go dead.

My life did seem as if it was dead until Aladdin arrived on the 3 June 1993.  

Absent Justice - My Story - The Briefcase Affair

Ericsson AXE faulty telephone exchange equipment (1)

On 3 June 1993. after two Telstra technical consultants inadvertantly left in my office, a briefcase. I found that Aladdin had left behind his treasures: the Ericsson Briefcase Saga was about to unfold i.e. Telstra had knowingly misled and deceived me and tAUSTEL, the then Australian Communications Regulator during my first settlement on 11 December 1992 (See Front Page Part Two 2-B)

The briefcase was not locked, and I opened it to find out it belonged to Mr Macintosh. There was no phone number, so I was obliged to wait for business hours the next day to track him down. But what there was in the briefcase was a file titled ‘SMITH, CAPE BRIDGEWATER’ - AXE - problems ongoing - this has been a major AXE problem. After five gruelling years fighting the evasive monolith of Telstra, being told various lies along the way, here was possibly the truth, from an inside perspective.

The first thing that rang bells was a document which revealed Telstra knew that the Ericsson AXE RVA fault they recorded in March 1992 had actually lasted for at least eight months — not the three weeks that was the basis of their settlement pay-out. Dated 24/7/92, and with my phone number in the top right corner, the document referred to my complaint that people ringing my number over an 8 month period received ‘service disconnected’ message telling the caller my line was not connected.  The final sentence reads: ‘Network investigation should have been brought in as fault has gone on for 8 months'.

I copied about one-third of this briefcase before my copying machine died. That information was sent to the AUSTEL.

The information I provided to AUSTEL (via this briefcase) confirmed Ericsson and Telstra were fully aware the AXE Ericsson lock-up faults were a problem worldwide, affecting 15 to 50 per cent of all calls generated through this AXE exchange equipment.(see Misleading Deceptive Conduct File No 4-D and 4-E). File 10-B Evidence File No/10-A to 10-f  shows other countries around the globe were removing the AXE equipment from their exchanges or had removed it from their network and yet Telstra was still promoting it as effective.. This fault was locking up the line after the last call had terminated. This fault was causing massive billing problems and stopping any in-coming call to that service line from connecting until the line released itself..   

Thousands upon thousands of Telstra customers Australia wide had been wrongly billed since the instalation of this Ericsson AXE equipment which in my case, had been installed in August 1991, with the problems still apparent in 2002. Other countries around the world were removing or had removed it from their exchanges (see File 10-B Evidence File No/10-A to 10-f ), and Australia was still denying to the arbitrator there was ever a problem with that equipment. Lies told by Telstra so as to minmize their liability to the COT Cases.

Telstra's lawyer Denise McBurnie from Freehill Hollingdale & Page, told me one thing when the briefcase documents said another.

These false and incorrect responses are what drove me almost around the twist. How could Telstra tell their lawyers between June 1993 to January 1994, something they knew the left briefcase at my premises showed I had been right from the very beginning in 1988?

What were Telstra and Freehill's trying to achieve?

Ericsson AXE faulty telephone exchange equipment (2)

“Our local technicians believe that Mr Smith is correct in raising complaints about incoming callers to his number receiving a Recorded Voice Announcement saying that the number is disconnected.

“They believe that it is a problem that is occurring in increasing numbers as more and more customers are connected to AXE.” (See False Witness Statement File No 3-A)

When the COT Cases exposed this Ericsson AXE call loss rate to AUSTEL (the then government communications regulator) AUSTEL (now ACMA) instigated an investigation into these AXE exchange faults and uncovered some 120,000 COT-type complaints were being experienced around Australia. Exhibit (Introduction File No/8-A to 8-C), shows AUSTEL’s Chairman Robin Davey received a letter from Telstra’s Group General Manager, suggesting he alter that finding:

For example, at point 4 on page 3, Telstra writes:

“The Report, when commenting on the number of customers with Cot-type problems, refers to a research study undertaken by Telecom at Austel’s request.  The Report extrapolates from those results and infers that the number of customers so affected could be as high as 120,000.

However, at point 2 on page 1 of Telstra’s letter 9 April 1994, Telstra writes:

“In relation to point 4, you have agreed to withdraw the reference in the Report to the potential existence of 120,000 COT-type customers and replace it with a reference to the potential existence of “some hundreds” of COT-type customers”.

The fact that on this occasion on 9 April 1994 Telstra (the defendants) were able to pressure the Government Regulator to change their original findings in the formal April 1994 AUSTEL COT Case report is alarming, to say the least. Worse, is that when AUSTEL released it into the public domain the report states AUSTEL only uncovered 50 or more COT-type complaints.

50 COT-type customer AXE complaints in comparison to 120,000 COT-type customer AXE complaints is one hell of a lie told by the government to its citizens who voted them into power.

This indeed has to be the worse type of systemic government corruption that has been used against Australian citizens who were trying to improve Australia's telecommunications network. Was this the type of corruption Julian Assange warned the COT Cases about?

These are the same Ericsson AXE exchange complaints I raised with Denise McBurnie of Freehill Hollingdale & Page, Telstra's lawyer to whom I had to register my ongoing telephone complaints (in writing) or Telstra would not investigate. As can be seen from below, the Senate found Telstra had indeed adopted the COT Cases Stratagy so as the conceal the more relevant technical documents from the COT Cases (see below).

Then a document arrived that made be sit up and ask: did Telstra know what I had discussed with the former Prime Minister of Australia? Had they been monitoring my telephone calls even before I purchased the holiday camp? Had I been a marked man since my arrival back in Australia on 18 September 1967?

I did not know at this time period in 1993 and 1994, that the ongoing threats made by Telstra and  their lawyers were starting the flashbabcks of my experiences in China to once again raise their ugly heads. 

 The threats and bullying by Telstra and their lawyers caused two blackouts. One blackout landed me in the Portland hospital for 5-days.

Absent Justice - My Story - Senator Ron Boswell

Threats caried out 

Like the threats made by Telstra and their lawyers that if I did not register my phone complaints with Denise McBurnie of Freehill Hollingdale & Page then my ongoing telephone faults would not be investigated the (non addressed threats and harrassment issues (see pages 82 to 88, Introduction File No/9 threats were made and carried out during my 1994 government-endorsed arbitration process because I continued to assist the Australian Federal Police AFP with their investigations into the phone and fax interception issues which the Minister for Commuications Michael Lee MP had raised with the AFP on my behalf.

Page 180 ERC&A, from the official Australian Senate Hansard, dated 29 November 1994, reports Senator Ron Boswell asking Telstra’s legal directorate:

“Why did Telecom advise the Commonwealth Ombudsman that Telecom withheld FOI documents from Alan Smith because Alan Smith provided Telecom FOI documents to the Australian Federal Police during their investigation?”

After receiving a hollow response from Telstra, which the senator, the AFP and I all knew was utterly false, the senator states:

“…Why would Telecom withhold vital documents from the AFP? Also, why would Telecom penalise COT members for providing documents to the AFP which substantiate that Telecom had conducted unauthorised interceptions of COT members’ communications and subsequently dealt in the intercepted information by providing that information to Telecom’s external legal advisers and others?” (See Senate Evidence File No 31)

Thus, the threats became a reality. What is so appalling about the withholding of relevant documents is that no one in the TIO office or government has ever investigated the disastrous impact this had on my overall submission to the arbitrator. The arbitrator and the government (who at the time fully owned Telstra) should have initiated an investigation into why an Australian citizen, who assisted the AFP in their investigations into unlawful interception of telephone conversations, was so severely disadvantaged during a civil arbitration.

The stress of being forced into a highly legalistic government-endorsed arbitration in an attempt to have our ongoing telephone problems fixed was trying enough. But to be told by the same government we had to sign our arbitration agreements while the Australian Federal Police (AFP) was investigating Telstra for the unauthorized interception of our telephone conversation as well as our fax lines which we needed to use so as to fax our arbitration claims to the arbitrator brought the COT Cases to breaking point.

No one cared. We were trapped and was at the mercy of those in the Establishment that saw a mammoth superrannuated carree in the offering if they closed their eyes to what was happening to the COT Cases.  

As I have explained in the body of this AFP segment, before the COT cased signed their arbitration agreements in April 1994, the government communications regulator AUSTEL [their represemnntatives] met with the COTs advising them that Telstra employees had been intercepting private and business telephone conversations and/or hacking into information faxed through Telstra's network. This was later confirmed after the completion of these arbitrations in January 1999 (see Scandrett & Associates Pty Ltd report Open Letter File No/12, and File No/13) shows. As discussed throughout the following seven chapters the AFP and AUSTEL found the Telstra Corporation had indeed intercepted my telephone conversations over an extended period (see Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1. 

During the second AFP interview with me at my business on 26 September 1994 (see Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1 transcripts of that interviewhile show at question 81 - Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1 I told the AFP that John McMahon had told me of the documents AUSTEL had uncovered confirmed beyond all doubt that my phone conversations had been bugged over an extended period. It was then that the AFP asked me as question 81 Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1:

AFP  "Did John McMahon ever describe the document that he'd spoken to you where it had been identified to him about live monitoring?

Answer. "No, no never".

AFP: "Okay. That, that document that you, that you might be referring to, or John McMahon may be referring to we do have a copy of it".   

Answer: "Right"

AFP: "However, because it's been provided to us by Telecom, I'm, I won't show it to you".

Answer: "You can't yeah I understand".

AFP: "But it does identify the fact that, that you were live monitored for a period of time. Se we're quite satisfied that, there are other references to it"

The AFP have still not made Telstra accountable for this phone bugging and fax hacking.

My legs gave way by the end of December 1994, with five months of my arbitration still in progress.

Hacking-Julian Assange File No 20). The hand-written notes in the right-hand column of this CCAS data include against dates, the names of people that I telephoned and/or faxed e.g., 31 January 1994, GM (Golden Messenger), AUSTEL and the Ombudsman. In one instance, the name Faye Smith appears when I phoned my ex-wife. This reflects the many statements on this website regarding Telstra’s secret surveillance of their own employees in 1990, because here is Telstra using similar tactics in January 1994 while they were in a litigation process with me.

My AFP interview transcript on 26 September 1994 describes Telstra recording who I phoned or faxed, and when. The AFP believed Telstra monitored my calls because the people they recorded were associated with the COT issues. Pages 3-5 of the AFP transcript, together with other documents I provided to the AFP between February and November 1994, prove that Telstra had listened in on private conversations prior to and during my government-endorsed arbitration

This document does not state Adelaide or a specific location, only Melbourne. I used to visit both Melbourne and South Australia on a regular basis from 1991 to 1993. Did Telstra even know where I stayed and who with? Let us not forget, I was not under suspicion of committing any crime let alone a serious one, nor was I suspected of being a terrorist. So why were the communications carrier and/or their government minders interested in my contacts and movements? When I showed File No 22 to Margaret (my office assistant) she advised me that she had not spoken to anyone about leaving the holiday camp (which was at 5.30pm just as described in this Telstra memo).A 12 August 1993 letter (see Hacking-Julian Assange File No 20) from Ms Rita Espinoza from a singles club to me, describes the constant engaged signal she experienced when trying to book a weekend during April and May 1993. A Telstra FOI document (see File No 22) dated 17 June 1993, refers to the same Rita Espinoza and her friend Elise Stenoya. Not only does this document record the personal phone numbers of these two ladies, but it also confirms Telstra was fully aware of when my office assistant left the business while I was away.

Absent Justice - Intruder

Local Portland police files will have on record the date their Sergeant visited the holiday camp after I confronted an intruder. This was about the same time I was pushing the advertising for the singles club weekends, which was a great way for single people to meet and socialise. I noticed a small light in the distance in the early hours of one morning, just after 1am. At first, I thought perhaps the glove box in my ute had somehow dropped open and it was that light, which I could see. As I got closer to the light, I discovered a four-wheel-drive vehicle parked and a person standing under the overhanging branches of a couple of large cypress trees on my property. I picked up an axe from a nearby woodpile as I passed. The person got into the car before I reached the trees. I walked up to the car and yanked the car door open. With my axe in the other hand, I demanded that this person identify himself and his purpose. I was particularly intrigued as there were no guests staying at the camp that night. The man, startled and confused by an angry man waving an axe at him, stammered that he was a fishing inspector waiting to catch abalone poachers. This answer seemed quite plausible to me, so I let him drive away. However, I lodged a report with the Portland police later that morning, just in case there was more to this than seemed at first.

A few days after the police sergeant visited the camp to discuss the intruder issue, the same sergeant phoned me to arrange a second visit. He did not want to discuss his investigation into the fishing inspector story on the phone. The sergeant arrived within the hour and explained that he had checked with both the Victorian and South Australian wildlife authorities who were in charge of investigations into fishing and abalone-poaching matters. Neither of them had authorised an investigator to be on my land and if they had, they would have notified me first. Why had this man been standing under the cypress tree? If he wasn’t a fishing inspector waiting to catch abalone poachers, then what was he waiting to catch?

This information recalled memories of my time in the People’s Republic of China, my confrontation with the Red Guards and to the Sydney newspaper reporter in September 1967 warning me that I would be a “marked man” for insisting that Australia should not be selling wheat to the People’s Republic of China while Mao Zedong supported North Vietnam. Australian troops were fighting and dying in the war against the North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong. Nothing made sense to me.

I couldn’t clear my mind of that episode or the feeling that there had to be a link between those two events: the secret eavesdropping on my personal affairs carried out by this government-owned telecommunications carrier and this still-unidentified man on my property. I arrived back in Australia from the People’s Republic of China (lucky to have escaped with my life) on 18 September 1967. At that time, I was interviewed by the Australian Commonwealth Police (now the AFP) and I gave them a copy of a letter I had written to the Hon Malcolm Fraser, who was then the Minister for the Army. I asked the police to be sure he received it. However, I have never had a response to that letter.

Absent Justice - Hon Malcolm Fraser

On 15 April 1994, 27 years later, the Herald Sun, an Australian newspaper reported:

“FORMER prime minister Malcolm Fraser yesterday demanded Telecom explain why his name appears in a restricted internal memo.

“Mr Fraser’s request follows the release of a damning government report this week which criticised Telecom for recording conversations without customer permission.

“Mr Fraser said Mr Alan Smith, of the Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp near Portland, phoned him early last year seeking advice on a long-running dispute with Telecom which Mr Fraser could not help.” (See Senate Evidence File No/53)

Who within the Telstra Corporation thought it was important to note that I had telephoned Malcolm Fraser? Is my conversation with the former prime minister on one of the nine audio tapes AUSTEL provided to the Australian Federal Police, but refused to supply copies to the COT cases? I was, at no time, suspected of committing a crime or being a possible risk to Australia’s national security.

As mentioned above, I even went as far as reporting in writing to both the Hon Malcolm Fraser and the then Commonwealth Police what was really happening to Australia’s wheat once it left Australia’s shores (see The People’s Republic of China segment on google). I have always acted in a responsible way even when the other side in my case Telstra’s (the defendants in government-endorsed arbitration), acted outside of the law as our Hacking -Julian Assange and Australian Federal Police Investigations two pages show.  So why was I and the other COT Cases subjected to this hacking into our telephone conversations and our faxes as they travelled through Telstra’s network?

Absent Justice - The Peoples Republic of China

The biggest problem I find myself faced with at 78-years of age is this – what is the best and most transparent way to put together a true and accurate account of what I experienced, way back between 28 June 1967 and 18 September 1967, as a crew member on an English ship loaded with Aussie wheat, as we sailed to The Peoples Republic of China, while Australia, New Zealand and the USA had troops fighting in North Vietnam. These troops were being slaughtered and maimed by the Vietcong, with those Vietcong having had their bellies filled with Australian wheat?  Back then, once I had arrived back in Australia, I just knew that I had a duty to report all the horrifying things I had witnessed in China to the Australian Government to the best of my ability.

Did the public servants in Australia take all steps to ensure Australian-made products were not travelling to hostile countries, as communist China was in the 1960/and 70s? Did any of Australia’s government bureaucrats inform our government that Mao was supplying, North Korea and North Vietnam with free grain, prior to the loading of the MS Hope Peak? Were these public servants aware, like some later public servants, from 2005 to 2007, who received middlemen kickbacks worth millions of dollars during the Saddam Hussein Australian Wheat Board (AWB) grain scandal? Although AWB, and by extension the Australian Government, was not the only entity to be implicated in the oil-for-food scandal, this unthinkable act earned notoriety in Australian political consciousness.

So, when I got back to Australia on 18 September 1967, by the skin of my back teeth,  I pleaded in a hand-written letter to the then-Minister for the Army, Malcolm Fraser (who later became Australia's 22nd Prime Minister from 1975 to 1983), to stop sending wheat to The Peoples Republic of China, who was then sending it on to North Vietnam while we were still at war with North Vietnam.  Sadly, all my pleas were ignored, and, once again, the same ship (with a different crew) filled up with wheat again and headed back to trading with the enemy. At the same time, our young service members, along with those from New Zealand and the USA, were left, once again, to be killed and maimed, not just by the Vietcong guerrillas but also by those Australians whose greed for money seriously surpassed any idea of right and wrong.

Of course, back then, we didn’t have computers or emails or any of the other electronics that we all have now and oh, how I wish that had all been available, believe me, because then I would have done what people like Julian Assange and Edward Snowdon have done, two men who also, clearly, believe the government must be honest with their citizens. 

Transcripts from my interview with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) 26th September 1994 (see Australian Federal Police Investigation File No/1), confirm that the AFP were alarmed that Telstra had gathered private information about me including documenting on internal Telstra records the names of the people who I had telephoned on a daily basis, including my telephone calls to Malcolm Fraser. Why did Telstra have me under electronic surveillance? 

If you are doubtful about my claims on this website, please just take a look at the people currently involved in protest marches, here in Australia, for various reasons because there you will find the older Aussie generations marching along beside an array of young Aussies, all of them, from the youngest to the oldest, visibly supporting the movement to bring Julian Assange home.

Please read after this page, the following Unprecedented Deception under the heading Communist China. 

hy didn't our government bureaucrats listen to me on my return from The Peoples Republic of China on 18 September 1967. Australia was feeding our enemy at the time they were supporting the North Vietnamese?  

Communist China in 1967

The following segment concerning my stint in The Peoples Republic of China has been slotted in here as one of the many reasons I am supporting the release of Julian Assange. No one investigated my claims. Not once did any government official ask me how I discovered China was sending Australian wheat to Vietnam, even though the President of the United States of America, L.B Johnson, had branded Australia two faced (see How Australia defied US to sell wheat to a famine-starved China - › rld › Asia),

Political favours, special awards, contracts for giant building projects, and the list goes on is how the corrupt system of government operates. These corrupt bureaucrats' selling Australian wheat to the Peoples Republic of China is only part of the story.

The following three statements taken from a report prepared by Australia's Kim Beasly MP on 4 September 1965 only tells part of this tragic episode concerning Australia's wheat deals

(see  Vol. 87 No. 4462 (4 Sep 1965) - National Library of Australia › nla.obj-702601569 

"The Department of External Affairs has recently published an "Information Handbook entitled "Studies on Vietnam" .  It established the fact that the Vietcong are equipped with Chinese arms and ammunition"

If it is right to ask Australian youth to risk everything in Vietnam it is wrong to supply their enemies"

Australian trade commssioners do not so readily see that our Chinese trade in war materials finances our own distruction. NDr do they see so clearly that the wheat trade does the same thing."  

by T Zhu2021 — touched the Chinese and Russian grain markets in the 1960s, earlier than ... Australia to China was being sent straight on to North Vietnam.


Image of vietcong guerilla
Image of vietcong guerilla
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Vietcong guerilla
"Viet Cong (VC), in full Viet Nam Cong San, English Vietnamese Communists, the guerrilla force that, with the support of the North Vietnamese Army, fought against South Vietnam (late 1950s–1975) and the United States (early 1960s–1973). The name is said to have first been used by South Vietnamese President NGO Dinh DIEM to Belittl the rebels" (

When I commenced writing My Story – Warts and All and this website, I told the full story – I didn’t leave bits out to avoid embarrassing myself. To tell all of my COT story, I had to go back in time to show how the phone faults affected my wellbeing and needed to cover some details regarding an incident involving China.

In 1967, many Australians supported America’s fight against communism in Vietnam. In June 1967, I signed onto the MS Hope Peak, a merchant ship crewed by British and West Indian seaman (see British Seamans Record Book R744269 Open Letter to PM File No 1 Alan Smiths Seaman). I was informed we were bound for for the Peoples Republic of China. A British Seamen’s Union representative informed me the MS Hope Peak was bound for Canada, but the following day, after I signed on board and accepted conditions, I was told we were REALLY bound for the People’s Republic of China; I was sailing out of Australia with a cargo of wheat heading to China.

The crew was horrified that Australia was trading and selling wheat to the People’s Republic of China. At the time, Mao Zedong’s communist government supported the North Vietnamese communists and authorised the supply of armoury, technical knowledge and financial assistance to them. Australian troops were among those dying in the conflict with the Viet Cong. Nothing made sense to the crew, or me.

I became ill during the voyage and needed medical care when we berthed. The briefing we received from the skipper was that Mao’s guards were LAW; they were authorised to beat even their own comrades if deemed necessary. Red Guards were everywhere: on the wharves, on our ship and at the entrance to the hospital as well as in the wards. When I refused to accept a non-sterile needle in my arm, the two Red Guards escorting me kept yelling at the shipping agent, who only spoke broken English, and I was arrested for refusing to comply and placed under guard.

While writing my third letter to the People’s Republic of China (previous letters were rejected), the skipper advised me this was my last opportunity. I told him I could not write what he was telling me to, which was “I am a US aggressor and a supporter of Chiang Kai-shek and the Chinese Nationalist Party.” However, I also knew the Red Guards could shoot me at will if I did not obey: they had implied this over the last few days when a Red Guard with a rifle in hand would wake me half-hourly ‘to see if I was asleep’. I believed my death was imminent.

The angry skipper reiterated that I would be shot if I did not say what they wanted me to say. I eventually wrote, “I hate America and its invasion of North Vietnam,” and narrowly managed to leave with my ship.

I would be a “marked man” - a noted communist

On arrival back in Australia in September 1967, the ship’s crew was paid off and a new crew brought in. The Australian Commonwealth Police (now the Australian Federal Police) interviewed me concerning my anti-America/pro-communism words written while under arrest. I gave them a copy of my handwritten letter to the Hon Malcolm Fraser, the then-Minister for Army. This letter clearly advised Mr Fraser that Australia’s grain was being used to assist North Vietnam in their war campaign against Australia, New Zealand and the USA. I asked the police to be sure Mr Fraser received this letter; however, I never received a response and Australia continued to supply grain to the People’s Republic of China, aware some of it was going to North Vietnam. After eating a bowl of Australian wheat, how many Viet Cong guerrillas went out on patrol and killed or maimed conscripted Australian, New Zealand and US soldiers?

The press also interviewed me and said my experience in China was a major news story. When the story was printed, however, it was only a very small article. The journalist said my side of the story had been “pulled”, that I would now be a marked man and that the government would have put a black mark against my name, noting me as a communist sympathiser – a ‘Commie’.

In the Australian Establishment back in the 1960s, who operated the scales to balance whose lives were the more important to save, the starving Chinese or the Aussie, Kiwi and USA troops fighting a war they did not want to fight?

No one transparantly investigated my claims. Not once did any government official ask me how I discovered China was sending Australian wheat to Vietnam, even though the President of the United States of America, L.B Johnson, had branded Australia two faced.

In January 2015, I provided official documentation to the office of the Prime Minister of Australia confirming, on 28 June 1967, in Melbourne, I signed onto a ship MS Hopepeak, crewed by British and West Indian seaman. A British Seaman's Union representative informed me that the vessel was bound for Canada.

MS Hopepeak - Absent Justice

I was NOT informed the ship was bound for The Peoples Repubic of China. It was only the following day, after I had signed articles (see British Seamans Record Book R744269 Open Letter to PM File No 1 Alan Smiths Seaman), that I was informed we were bound for for the Peoples Republic of China. 


it was vital for me to discuss the China issues at the beginning of my story so that the reader might compare what I am saying about Australia's Establishment is closer to the truth than what Australia's  politicians want to admit. 

It is unbelievable for the Liberal-Country Coalition to have placed Australian troops in the life-threatening circumstances as they did for their political point-scoring To have done this while trading with the enemy, using so many young lives here in AustraliaNew Zealand and the USA as collateral damage, is a betrayal of the worse possible kind.

Possibly worse is the fact that Australia's bureaucrats continued to trade with China for so long after being aware China was assisting North Vietnam (the enemy) while that enemy was killing our youths and the youths of our allies. 

However, one thing must never be forgotten and that is the The Hon Macolm Fraser Prime Minister of Australia bridged a gap that the South Vietnamese has never forgotten as the folowing government documents show The Fraser legacy - refugees, asylum seekers and ... - ParlInfo show


Absent Justice Ebook

Read Alan’s book

My name is Alan Smith. This is the story of my battle with a telecommunications giant and the Australian Government, a battle that has twisted and turned, since 1992, through elected governments, government departments, regulatory bodies, the judiciary, and the Australian telecommunications giant, Telstra, or Telecom, as it was known when this story started. The quest for justice continues to this day.

Other independent business people similarly affected by poor telecommunications have joined me on my journey. We are known as the Casualties of Telstra, or the COT cases. All we wanted was for the government owned telecommunications carrier Telstra to admit there was problems, and fix them.

Worse, we had been tricked into signing a confidentiality clause that has hampered all of our efforts since to have our claims transparently investigated.

What do you think? Are we imagining it or has there really been massive corruption and collusion on the part of public servants, politicians, regulatory bodies and Telstra themselves, to protect Telstra to the detriment of it's customers?

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“A number of people seem to be experiencing some or all of the problems which you have outlined to me. …

“I trust that your meeting tomorrow with Senators Alston and Boswell is a profitable one.”

Hon David Hawker MP

“…the very large number of persons that had been forced into an arbitration process and have been obliged to settle as a result of the sheer weight that Telstra has brought to bear on them as a consequence where they have faced financial ruin if they did not settle…”

Senator Carr

“Only I know from personal experience that your story is true, otherwise I would find it difficult to believe. I was amazed and impressed with the thorough, detailed work you have done in your efforts to find justice”

Sister Burke

“I am writing in reference to your article in last Friday’s Herald-Sun (2nd April 1993) about phone difficulties experienced by businesses.

I wish to confirm that I have had problems trying to contact Cape Bridgewater Holiday Camp over the past 2 years.

I also experienced problems while trying to organise our family camp for September this year. On numerous occasions I have rung from both this business number 053 424 675 and also my home number and received no response – a dead line.

I rang around the end of February (1993) and twice was subjected to a piercing noise similar to a fax. I reported this incident to Telstra who got the same noise when testing.”

Cathy Lindsey

“…your persistence to bring about improvements to Telecom’s country services. I regret that it was at such a high personal cost.”

Hon David Hawker

“Only I know from personal experience that your story is true, otherwise I would find it difficult to believe. I was amazed and impressed with the thorough, detailed work you have done in your efforts to find justice”

Sister Burke

“All that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”

– Edmund Burke