Friday, February 29, 2008

Vale Peter McGregor

I'm stunned and very sad. I met Peter McGregor recently, in his home in Newcastle in September when I was involved with the APEC demo Ghost Dance. He was as lovely and sweet a bloke as I could hope to meet, and most hospitable; we corresponded by email in recent months. He fought for human justice for more than 35 years. He's taken his life.

"Peter McGregor, a veteran antiwar activist, was frog-marched out of the event by two plainclothes police officers for interrupting a keynote address by the Howard government’s attorney-general, Philip Ruddock.

"As Ruddock began his speech, 'The law as a preventative weapon against terrorism,' McGregor rose from his seat in the second row, turned to the audience and said: 'Why are you welcoming this man? He is a war criminal.' Before he could say more, he was grabbed and bundled out of the auditorium, despite objections from this correspondent and other delegates."

The last email I received from him, in December, said, in part:

Thanks again for your support, & sorry it's another long one, but this is the latest - & perhaps my last on this protest... Please read Michael Head's article "Australian legal academics accept arrest of antiwar colleague" at & let me know of anything your do/write/etc. of this protest, but also whatever you are up to... Rather that steadying a leaking & rotten boat, by supporting each other we can rock it... Hey ! We could even help sink it !
Love & rage, peter

Obituary of a great man

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Blogger SME said...

Very sad. The world could use more folks like him, not fewer. Sometimes, it seems, the people who see how things should be take the weight of their world on their shoulders and are crushed by the rest of us.

Requiesat in pace, Mr. McGregor.

2:17 PM  

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