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Peter Leahy

Lieutenant-General Peter Leahy retired from the Australian army in July 2008 having concluded his 37 year military career with six years as Chief of Army. Within a year he was on the boards of Codan and Electro Optic Systems (EOS). More recently, EOS has been exporting its weapon systems to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates while the Yemen war has raged despite multiple reports of war crimes by these countries and a situation in Yemen which the UN has called the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe.

Peter Cosgrove

Peter Cosgrove was in the Australian Army for forty years, a career that culminated in the top job, Chief of the Defence Force. After retiring from the Defence Force, and before his appointment as Governor-General, Cosgrove developed a portfolio of directorships, which included a previously unrevealed appointment, six years on the Australian board of Leonardo, an Italian multinational and world top 10 arms manufacturer. Leonardo was part of the consortium supplying the ADF with 47 new multi-role helicopters, a project that commenced while Cosgrove was CDF.

Tony Fraser

Tony Fraser was in the Australian Army for 34 years, including a final stint in Defence’s weapons buying arm as Head of Helicopter Systems. From there he exited to industry, leading Finmeccanica’s Australian operation (now Leonardo) then moving to Airbus Australia. Both corporations were in the consortium supplying Defence with $3.5 billion of new helicopters. In November 2018, Fraser moved back into government as the Head of Defence’s weapons buying group.

Jim McDowell

After 37 years in military industry, Jim McDowell moved from BAE Systems Saudi Arabia onto the board of the Australian Nuclear Science Technology Organisation. He was also given $1.5 million in Defence contracts, joined the boards of various military industry companies, and was made Chancellor of UniSA, which has extensive research links with military industry. He is now Chief Executive, Department of the Premier and Cabinet, SA, “The Defence State”.

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Gutless Wonders: when will politicians demonstrate the accountability they foist on the rest of us?

Gutless Wonders: when will politicians demonstrate the accountability they foist on the rest of us?

From Robodebt to Ruby Princess, politicians are past masters at ducking responsibility, though busy prosecuting their perceived foes. Will they stop at nothing to avoid being accountable, asks Elizabeth Minter. Taxpayers are on the hook for $3 million in court costs fighting whistleblowers, and threatened High Court action to stop a federal employee giving evidence to the Ruby Princess Inquiry. All the while, in the absence of a federal anti-corruption commission, the political scandals unfold, and pass without consequence.

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