Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Thursday that the government would appoint a special investigator to work with police and prosecutors to oversee referrals by Justice Brereton. The appointment recognizes the limitations of the evidence gathered by the Inspector General.
Mr Morrison also said that any soldiers subject to the charges necessary to face the consequences and it is important to hold accountable those “who have responsibility for the environment in which these Australians have served” .
Mr Morrison said the Australian Defense Forces personnel should be very proud and it was important that not all members were tarnished by the report. But he said the high standards and respect for the ADF “require us to deal with honest and brutal truths.” Mr Morrison said Australia needs “a deep respect for justice and the rule of law”.
Mr Roberts-Smith, who denies wrongdoing and has started libel proceedings against him Age and Herold, will be among the SAS numbers referred to the special investigator, special forces sources said.
On Thursday evening, Mr Roberts-Smith released a statement falsely claiming that a “member of the media” had induced the police force to commit his alleged war crimes. Indeed, Air Chief Marshal Binskin referred Mr Roberts-Smith to AFP following an earlier referral received by the Defense Chief for alleged criminal conduct of Justice Brereton’s VC recipient.
Mr Roberts-Smith’s statement also attempted to dismiss Justice Brereton’s investigation as being based on “rumors” despite the senior judge conducting more than 350 oath interviews and examining thousands of classified information. He welcomed the announcement by Mr Morrison and Secretary of Defense Linda Reynolds and said it was “encouraging” that the matter was being investigated by a dedicated investigative agency.
Another telling aspect of the evidence gathered was, according to defense sources, that it was allegations of war crimes committed and covered up by senior and junior soldiers, rather than officers. However, officers and the leadership of the defense forces have been rigorously scrutinized to enable a culture in which allegedly criminal acts are normalized.
The debate over how responsibility for alleged war crimes should be shared is already dividing the special forces. Former and serving members variously accuse the cliques of soldiers who allegedly perpetrated them, the officers who failed to respond to warning signs or promoted cultural malaise, and the defense and political leaders who even use the military coalition’s strategy to ” Capture and Killing ”as the prospect of victory in Afghanistan vanished.
Mr Morrison and Senator Reynolds did not rule out the dissolution of the SAS, but senior defense officials, including the youngest chief of the special forces, Maj. Gen. Adam Findlay, have made a strong signal that it will not. Part of the reason for the reform, and not the dissolution, of the SAS lies in the fact that it was SAS whistleblowers, including several Afghan war veterans, who exposed the inspector general’s wrongdoing.
General Campbell is halfway through implementing reforms that are based on maintaining the elite regiment.
In anticipation of this, Mr. Morrison will appoint either a senior attorney or a retired judge as the country’s special war crimes investigator. The investigator will be based at the Home Office, along with attorneys and state and state detectives overseeing the ongoing investigation and referral of criminal charges to the Commonwealth Attorney.
The government has also announced the creation of a new independent oversight body to drive cultural change within the ADF and implement the recommendations of the Brereton report.
Senator Reynolds said the board of directors would be set up so “accountability and transparency are outside the ADF chain of command and outside of government.”
In a separate press conference on Thursday, media mogul Kerry Stokes was asked why he was supporting Mr Roberts-Smith, whom he hired as an executive at Channel Seven in 2015.
“Mr. Roberts-Smith is a valued manager who has excelled and achieved great results in Queensland that we are all proud of,” said Mr. Stokes.
“He has a defamation process against various media. It is not my business to comment on this. And the fact that he was recognized … I don’t think that’s in question. ”
Start your day informed
Our Morning Edition newsletter is a curated guide to the most important and interesting stories, analysis, and insights. Register for Der Sydney Morning Herald‘s newsletter here, Ageis here, Brisbane Times, here and todayis here
Nick McKenzie is an investigative reporter for The Age. He has won nine Walkley Awards and has worked in politics, business, foreign and defense, human rights, criminal justice, and social affairs.
Gold Walkley Award Winning Journalist and Author. He was the first Australian journalist to be embedded in special forces in Afghanistan.
Anthony is the foreign affairs and national security correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.
These were the details of the news Ten SAS soldiers are under investigation by war crimes investigators for... for this day. We hope that we have succeeded by giving you the full details and information. To follow all our news, you can subscribe to the alerts system or to one of our different systems to provide you with all that is new.
It is also worth noting that the original news has been published and is available at de24.news and the editorial team at AlKhaleej Today has confirmed it and it has been modified, and it may have been completely transferred or quoted from it and you can read and follow this news from its main source.