Ex-Oz PM signed off on secret US plan to fire missile at Australia: Documents
Canberra: Former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser signed off on a secret US plan to test MX missiles by firing them from California to the coast of Australia, it has emerged.
Details of the extraordinary plan, signed off by the most senior members of the Federal Government, have been revealed in Cabinet papers released by the National Archives.
Titled "United States Proposal Regarding Test Launch of MX Missiles", the file was marked "SECRET" and was presented to Cabinet by the defence minister James Killen.
The file reveled that in June 1981 Cabinet had decided, after a verbal briefing from Fraser, that there was "no objection in principle to the United States proposal," news.com.au reports.
Fraser had outlined the US proposal "for two test launchings of the new MX missile to the Tasman Sea off Cape Pillar".
According to the report, the US wanted the first launch no later than the first half of 1984. A second launch was planned for 26 weeks after the first.
Australian Cabinet was told to keep details of the missile tests under wraps because "early announcement would allow time for activists to try to gather support and plan protests".
"The US will need to consider countries along the flight path of the missile and whether an early announcement in Australia and the US would create problems with, for example, Fiji or New Zealand," the file stated.
"Consultation with the Tasmanian government would be necessary before a statement by the Commonwealth Government. It would be preferable for the matter not to become an election issue in either the Tasmanian state elections or federal elections," it added.
According to the report, "the committee had agreed there was no objection in principle but there would need to be further consultations on "the details of the firings and, closer to the time, close attention to the details".
However, in 1985, the then PM Bob Hawke withdrew support for the missile tests after a meeting with US Secretary of State George Shultz, the report said.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- I eat beef, can somebody stop me?: Kiren Rijiju hits back at Naqvi
- Delhi: Visually impaired boy scores 91.4% in CBSE 12th Board exams
- MP: 14-year-old boy works as bonded labour since 2009
- UP: Man chops off wife's nose, hair for dowry
- Heat ave continues in India, death toll climbs to over 1,400
- Zee Media Exclusive: The plight of yoga expert Tejaswi Sharma
- Megastar Amitabh Bachchan slapped with Rs 1 crore notice
- Kenyan lawyer offers to marry Barack Obama's daughter Malia
- Woman denied flat in Mumbai for being a Muslim
- 4 Indians in Forbes' 100 most powerful women list
- Gujjar stir: HC asks Rajasthan govt to clear rail track, roads
- Maggi likely to face ban in India!
- Salman Khan accident files burnt in Mantralaya fire
- AIB: The 'Third Gender's right to dignity'
- Gujjar stir: HC asks Rajasthan govt to clear rail track, roads- Part II
- CBSE Class 10 (Class X Board) Result 2015 on cbse.nic.in, cbseresults.nic.in at 2 pm
- mahresult.nic.in updated with MSBSHSE Maharashtra HSC Class XII Result 2015
- Manmohan Singh defends himself on 2G charge, slams Modi govt for 'carbon copy' schemes
- Sonia Gandhi 'unconstitutional authority' during UPA: PM Narendra Modi
- Hours after attacking NDA govt, Manmohan Singh meets PM Narendra Modi
- Check cbseresults.nic.in, cbse.in for CBSE Class 10 X Board Result at 2 pm
- PMO website revamped, now send e-mail to PM Modi directly
- GUJCET Results 2015 declared on gseb.org
- Pakistan break Team India's long-standing ODI record at home soil
- Centre moves SC against Delhi HC order on LG's powers; hearing on Friday
- Gujjar agitation: Centre sending additional forces to vacate rail tracks, say sources
- Islamic State attracts young recruits with free honeymoon, stipend for family
- MSBSHSE Class XII HSC results 2015: Maharashtra Class 12th Board results declared on mahresult.nic.in
- Rahul Gandhi takes another dig at NDA govt, says Manmohan gave lessons on economy to PM Modi
- Former Bihar CM Jitan Ram Manjhi meets PM Modi, triggers tie-up speculation