||Issue No. 274||29 July 2005|
The Heart of the Matter
Interview: Battle Stations
Unions: The Workers, United
Politics: The Lost Weekend
Industrial: Truth or Dare
History: A Class Act
Economics: The Numbers Game
International: Blonde Ambition
Training: The Trade Off
Review: Bore of the Worlds
Poetry: The Beaters Medley
The Locker Room
Poetry in motion
Losing the faith
HT Lee was a left wing ALP activist for over 30 years. In the 1970's and 80's he was in the thick of factional wars in inner Sydney, often accompanying future MP's Peter Baldwin and Peter Crawford door knocking.
Marian Wilkinson, in her definitive biography on Graham Richardson "The Fixer", made much of the bravery of HT Lee. The diminutive HT won plaudits from Wilkinson for his courage- being involved in more than one angry confrontation with colourful local ALP identities such as Tom Domican. HT by all accounts didn't take a backward step during such confrontations.
HT Lee worked loyally for many years for the CFMEU. He edited the CFMEU journal "UNITY" managing its transformation from Pravda style broadsheet to a full colour glossy magazine.
1999 saw what was arguably HT's finest moment. He was in East Timor in the chaos before and immediately after the referendum that ultimately resulted in that nations independence.
HT worked as a freelance journalist in Dili during these dangerous days. He did innumerable radio interviews with Australian radio stations, expressing a compassionate perspective on the apocalypse engulfing the East Timorese people and advocating UN intervention.
HT was on the last Hercules of evacuees out of the UN compound in Dili. A magnificent photo he took of a crying local boy was run on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald and the Age. HT maintained an active interest and involvement in the East Timor solidarity movement for the rest of his life.
A few years later HT assisted in the production of a documentary DVD about the unfairness of oil and gas royalties between Australia and East Timor in the "Timor Gap". The documentary was central to educating the Australian people on the issue. The recent settling of this issue -providing a fairer distribution of oil and gas royalties- will have been of immense satisfaction to HT.
Over the last few years HT Lee was also active in support of the Burmese people. He made repeated trips to Thailand to work with and for Burmese refugees on the Thai/Burma border.
A memorial service for HT will be held next Tuesday August 2nd at Le Pine, 716 High Street Thornbury (Melbourne) at 9:30AM, followed by a lunch at Sukhothai Restaurant in High Street Northcote.
Anyone seeking further information about the memorial service or lunch can call Neil on 0407 057 081.
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