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Chapter 7- Vietnam-Vietcong


Absent Justice - My Story - Parliament House Canberra

You might well ask after clicking on to Vietnam what has Australia’s past trading with Communist China during the Vietnam has to do with the my Telstra story?

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

For Australia's bureaucrats to have 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 is my reason for raising the Vietnam War in my COT story.

It shows there is another side to Australia’s public servants, who act as a law unto themselves as they did during the Vietnam War and later when controlling the government-endorsed arbitrations. 

I have completed this part of my COT story many times only to find I have missed essential issues. So the introduction to the website gets bigger and bigger until I rewrite it again with the full intention of keeping it short. But how can you keep this tragic episode short? Well, below is my hundredth attempt.

But the disregard for the Liberal Coalition Government's unconscionable conduct towards its citizens goes back even before the COT arbitrations of 1994 to 1999. This deception and immoral behaviour began before the Vietnam War when Robert Menzie's and Harold Holt's Liberal Coalition Government forced the young two-year conscripts to go to war in Vietnam to fight alongside our New Zealand and USA brothers. They were also dying and being maimed by North Vietnamese Communist Army alongside the Vietcong Guerrilla.

To fully observe the depth of what I am saying on this website concerning Australia's powerfull corrupt Liberal Coalition Government, please try and place yourself in the shoes of the mother's and father's whose son if his conscription number was drawn out of the army-hat he was literally forced to go to fight in Vietnam while the Liberal Government Ministers stayed home and reaped the payment the profiteering from trading with The Peoples Republic of China. 

These pages show nothing had changed since the 1960s when Australian bureaucrats advised the government that trading with The People’s Republic of China during the Vietnam War when China was assisting the North Vietnamese in killing and maiming as many Australian, New Zealand, and USA troops as possible, it was OK. 

Did these bureaucrats believe our soldiers and those of New Zealand and the USA were collateral damage?  Despite Australian politicians warning Australia's Establishment that it was wrong and immoral to continue this practice of trading with the enemy Australia still closed her eyes to this very immoral trading.

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 Australia, New Zealand and the USA, 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.

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 selling wheat to Communist China [The Peoples Rupublic of China] who was then sending it on to our enemies in North Vietnam; better known as the Viet-cong. Amazingly, in 2023 Kim Beasly is now Chairman of the Australian War Memorial Council,

(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."

Did these public servants, like some public servants from 2005 to 2007 who received kickbacks worth millions of dollars during the Saddam Hussein Australian Wheat Board (AWB) grain scandal, receive similar kickbacks? 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.

This sacrifice by Australia, New Zealand and the USA has been forgotten by China  

1 July 2021 — The editorial in The Australian Financial Review of August 28, 1967, argues why Australia's position on wheat sales to China was rational. ( › World › Asia - How Australia defied US to sell wheat to a famine-starved China

While the Financial Review might argue that supplying wheat to a starving China saved many Chinese lives, one must also ask how many Australian, New Zealand and USA lives were lost after Australia's wheat went into the bellies of the North Vietnam - Vietcong soldiers who, after eating that wheat went out into the jungle to kill as many troops as they could.


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


Image of vietcong guerilla


Image of vietcong guerilla

 More images

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 Press.

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

In 1967, not 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 not informed we were bound for The People's 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 the conditions, I was told we were 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. 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 comrades if deemed necessary. Red Guards were everywhere: on the wharves, on our ship, at the hospital entrance, and 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:

"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. I eventually wrote, “I hate America and its invasion of North Vietnam,” and narrowly managed to leave with my ship.

Absent Justice - The Peoples Republic of China

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 was brought in. The Australian Commonwealth Police (now the Australian Federal Police) interviewed me concerning my anti-America/pro-communism words written while under house-arrest. I gave them a copy of my handwritten letter to the Hon Malcolm Fraser, the then-Minister for the Army. This letter 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, knowing the possibility that after eating a bowl of Australian wheat, the Viet Cong guerrillas went out on patrol and killed or maimed conscripted Australian, New Zealand and US soldiers?

MS Hopepeak - Absent Justice The press also interviewed me and said my experience in China was an important news story. When the story was printed, however, it was only a tiny 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 transparently investigated my claims. Not once did any government official ask me how I discovered China was sending Australian wheat to Vietnam. What happened to my written account provided to the Commonwealth Police on what I experienced at the hands of the Red Guards or what I had observed in detention?

Even in 2022, this part of my life seems to be in sections and not complete. I know there are hours, perhaps a half-day here and there, that I cannot piece together or fully remember. It seems my trip to China and then Japan comes back in stages, not complete. Even Japan where I relaxed after the events that happened is a haze. 

For this part of my story, I shall tell it after my ex-wife Faye had been gone for four years, just before I met Shelia Hawkins in the Society Restaurant in Bourke Street, Melbourne. The first meeting of the COT Cases. Shelia's restaurant had been suffering from phone problems, and these issues had been picked up by the talkback radio show Deryn Hinch. From that radio show, I contacted Sheila, and we agreed to meet to discuss our mutual phone complaints. 

THE COT STORY - was about to begin. 

Absent Justice - Intruder

Local Portland police files will record the date their Sergeant Frank ------ (who our now know professionally) visited the holiday camp after I confronted an intruder. This was the same time I was pushing the advertising for the singles club weekends, 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 1 am. At first, I thought perhaps the glove box in my ute had somehow dropped open, and it was that light that I could see. As I got closer to the morning, I discovered a four-wheel-drive vehicle parked and a person standing under the overhanging branches of a couple of giant 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 entirely plausible, 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 the Victorian and South Australian wildlife authorities investigating 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? What was he waiting to see if he wasn’t a fishing inspector waiting to catch abalone poachers?

Whenever a school group was in attendance, I did a security check various times during the night or my overnight staff did the same. I notified teachers and group leaders that I often was in my office when the light was on. Many a cup of tea or coffee was shared with a school teacher or a group member on night duty.  

But on this occasion, this particular intruder brought back 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, while Australian, New Zealand and USA troops fought and died in the war against the North Vietnamese and the Viet Cong. Nothing made sense to me then, or still does in 2018

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

During my 1994/95 arbitration, I supplied the Australian Federal Police ( Australian Federal Police Investigations - Chapter 1 - Hacked documents and Australian Federal Police Investigations several Australian newspaper articles concerning two separate telephone conversations I had with The Hon Malcolm Fraser. Mr Fraser reported to the media only what he thought was important concerning Telstra's phone bugging issues and nothing else. 

“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 in Telstra Corporation thought it 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 never 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 happening to Australia’s wheat once it left Australia’s shores (see The People’s Republic of China segment on google).


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 Australia, New 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. 

I believe every Australian should be advised to read a full two-page mainstream media release prepared by an independent historian on the history of China and Taiwan. What the west should be shown is to take sides in any war between these two nations is asking them to take sides in a civil war like that experienced back in the USA, North against the South, 

After the release of this two-page newspaper size history on China and Taiwan, if a referendum was held in Australia, the result of its finding might shock Australian politicians into taking a stern look at the way China is today towards the west even though the west stopped them starving to death in the 1960s during the great famine.

What we in the west sacrificed to help China is beyond all belief. 

However, one thing must never be forgotten, and that is that The Hon Malcolm Fraser, Prime Minister of Australia, bridged a gap that the South Vietnamese has never failed as the following government documents

It is however, most important we pay tribute to one of Australia's finest Prime Minister's that Australia has ever had, a compassionate man as well as a politician (see and  Download PDFDownload PDF.  

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

Absent Justice Ebook

Read Alan’s book
‘Absent Justice’

Alan Smith’s book shows us corruption, fraud and deception perpetrated against fellow Australian citizens by the then government owned Telstra Corporation and the use of an 'arbitration confidentiality gag clause,' which is still being used in 2022 to cover up the many crimes committed by Telstra during their arbitration defence of the COT Cases in 1994 to 1998.

This book is asking the government why are these crimes committed by Telstra being concealed under a gag clause?


All of the main events as quoted in this unbelievable true crime story are supported by copies of the original freedom of Information documents on Alan's website (see Absent Justice Book 2)

Without those documents, most people would really struggle to believe that public officials and their lawyers committed the illegal offences they did.

Using the acquired evidence that can be downloaded from is possibly a world first.


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“…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

“…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

“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

“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.”

The Hon David Hawker MP

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

– Edmund Burke