The Sydney Morning Herald, April 14, 1977, p. 2.
LONDON, Wednesday. — If the Australian Government is not prepared to do anything about uranium mining, then Lang Hancock will.
This is the message the West Australian iron ore magnate is spreading in London on one of his rare visits — a business trip, combined with a new phase in his pro-nuclear campaign.
Mr Hancock, 67, told AAP that he invited the father of the H-bomb, Dr Edward Teller, to speak in Australia on the need for Australian mining and export of uranium and development of nuclear power.
Mr Hancock said he had proposed to the Prime Minister, Mr Fraser, that Dr Teller should be invited to address both Houses of Federal Parliament, but the Prime Minister had replied that “protocol would be outraged.”
So instead, Dr Teller is to address both Houses of the Queensland State Parliament on May 10.
“The whole press gallery will have to be there, whether they like it or not, and the politicians will have to take notice.”
“Fraser is impotent,” Mr Hancock declared with typical bluntness. “The only political leader worth feeding in Australia is Joh Bjelke-Petersen and he agreed that Dr Teller should address the Queensland Parliament.”
Dr Teller, 69, now an American citizen, has already visited Australia at Mr Hancock’s invitation to speak on the use of nuclear explosions in iron ore mining.
Mr Hancock’s plans in that direction have so far been fruitless, although he believes that if Mr Gorton had stayed as Prime Minister they might have succeeded.
But this time, Mr Hancock hopes, Dr Teller’s arguments in Brisbane and possibly other venues around Australia will “demonstrate to the Australian people that uranium mining and nuclear power are not only safe, but essential for the industrial and domestic future of the country.”
Mr Hancock flew to London on Saturday night for a brief visit after a whirlwind Middle East tour. He leaves for home today — flying Concorde to Bahrain where his private jet will be waiting for the flight back to Australia.
The man who says the Australian Government has “no role whatsoever” to play in the development of the country, blames “the communist controlled unions” for the present ban on uranium exports.
And they are supported, he says, by “a monologue of propaganda and lies from the econuts.”
“They understand that mining is the jugular vein of Australia. The Government doesn’t understand it.”
But if a referendum on the issue were to be held now, Mr Hancock believes there would be an overwhelming majority in favour of mining and export.
That would please him — although ultimately, he says, Australia itself go in for nuclear power, including, possibly, enrichment.
“If we delay we’ll be left in the cold. Every Australian is going to lose desperately if we don’t use nuclear power. We’ll have to walk.”
Mr Hancock emphasises that his crusade for uranium is not one resulting from any personal financial involvement.
His main field remains iron ore, and as far as he knows there is no uranium in any of the land over which he has interests.
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