|Richard Butler AC|
25th Governor of Tasmania
3 October 2003 – 9 August 2004
|Monarch||Queen Elizabeth II|
|Preceded by||Sir Guy Green|
|Succeeded by||William Cox|
|Born||May 13, 1942 |
Coolah, New South Wales, Australia
|Spouse||Dr Jennifer Grey (formerly married to Senator Susan Ryan)|
|Alma mater||University of Sydney|
Australian National University
Richard William Butler AC (born 13 May 1942) served as an Australian diplomat, United Nations weapons inspector, and Governor of Tasmania. Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia on 14 February 1975 "for the purpose of according recognition The Governor of Tasmania is the representative in the Australian state of Tasmania of Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia. Events 42 BC - First Battle of Philippi: Triumvirs Mark Antony and Octavian fight an indecisive battle with Caesar's Year 2003 ( MMIII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. Events 48 BC - Caesar's civil war: Battle of Pharsalus - Julius Caesar decisively defeats Pompey at Pharsalus "MMIV" redirects here For the Modest Mouse album see " Baron von Bullshit Rides Again " For the ship see RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Context States headed by Elizabeth II William John Ellis Cox, AC, RFD, ED, QC (born 1 April 1936, Hobart, Tasmania) was Governor of The Hon Sir Guy Stephen Montague Green AC, KBE, CVO (born July 26, 1937) was the Governor of Tasmania William John Ellis Cox, AC, RFD, ED, QC (born 1 April 1936, Hobart, Tasmania) was Governor of Events 1497 - Pope Alexander VI excommunicates Girolamo Savonarola. Year 1942 ( MCMXLII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Coolah ( is a town with about 1082 people in the central northern part of New South Wales, Australia in Warrumbungle Shire. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. Susan Maree Ryan AO (b 10 October 1942) is an Australian educator who served as a Senator for the Australian Capital Territory Alma mater is Latin for "nourishing mother" It was used in Ancient Rome as a title for the mother Goddess, and in Medieval The University of Sydney (informally Sydney Uni or USyd) is the oldest university in Australia The Australian National University, commonly abbreviated to ANU, is a public Research university situated in Canberra, Australia. Diplomacy is the art and practice of conducting Negotiations between representatives of groups or states Order of Australia is an order of chivalry established by Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia on 14 February 1975 "for the purpose of according recognition Events 1497 - Pope Alexander VI excommunicates Girolamo Savonarola. Year 1942 ( MCMXLII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. The United Nations ( UN) is an International organization whose stated aims are to facilitate cooperation in International law, International security The Governor of Tasmania is the representative in the Australian state of Tasmania of Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia.
Butler was born in Coolah in rural New South Wales. Coolah ( is a town with about 1082 people in the central northern part of New South Wales, Australia in Warrumbungle Shire. He grew up in Sydney and was educated at Sydney University and the Australian National University, Canberra. Sydney (ˈsɪdniː is the most populous city in Australia, with a Metropolitan area population of approximately 4 The University of Sydney (informally Sydney Uni or USyd) is the oldest university in Australia The Australian National University, commonly abbreviated to ANU, is a public Research university situated in Canberra, Australia. Canberra ( is the capital city of Australia With a population of over 340000 it is Australia's largest inland City. He joined the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs in 1965, and served in a number of postings until 1975, when he resigned to become Principal Private Secretary to the Leader of the Opposition, Gough Whitlam, who had recently been dismissed as Prime Minister. Year 1965 ( MCMLXV) was a Common year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar of the 1965 Gregorian calendar. Year 1975 ( MCMLXXV) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Edward Gough Whitlam, AC, QC (born 11 July 1916 known as Gough Whitlam (ˈɡɒf goff is an Australian former politician and 21st This article is about the government position For other uses see Prime Minister (disambiguation.
In 1983 the next Australian Labor Party Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, appointed him as Australia's Permanent Representative on Disarmament to the United Nations in Geneva. Year 1983 ( MCMLXXXIII) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays the 1983 Gregorian calendar) Robert James Lee (Bob Hawke, AC (born 9 December 1929 was the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia and longest serving Australian Labor Party Prime Minister Geneva (Genève is the second-most populous city in Switzerland (after Zürich) and is the most populous city of Romandy (the French -speaking He was next appointed Australian Ambassador to Thailand, and played a major part in the Cambodian peace settlement, working closely with then Foreign Minister Gareth Evans. The Kingdom of Thailand (ˈtaɪlænd ราชอาณาจักรไทย, râːtɕʰa-ʔaːnaːtɕɑ̀k-tʰɑj The Kingdom of Cambodia ( formerly known as Kampuchea (, transliterated: Preăh Réachéanachâkr Kâmpŭchea) is a country in South East Gareth Evans may refer to Gareth Evans (philosopher, philosopher at Oxford University and student of Michael Dummett Gareth Evans (politician He was Australian Ambassador to the United Nations from 1992 to 1997. The United Nations ( UN) is an International organization whose stated aims are to facilitate cooperation in International law, International security Year 1992 ( MCMXCII) was a Leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1992 Gregorian calendar) Year 1997 ( MCMXCVII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1997 Gregorian calendar
In 1997 Butler was appointed Chairman of the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM), the UN weapons inspection organisation in Iraq, in succession to Rolf Ekéus. Year 1997 ( MCMXCVII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display full 1997 Gregorian calendar United Nations Special Commission ( UNSCOM) was an inspection regime created by the United Nations to ensure Iraq 's compliance with policies concerning For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Iraq topics. Rolf Ekéus (born 1935 is a Swedish Diplomat. From 1978 to 1983 he was a representative to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva, and he In this role he antagonised both the Iraqi regime and the United States, and was frequently described as arrogant and aggressive. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan rebuked him for using "undiplomatic" language about then Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein. Kofi Atta Annan, GCMG (born 8 April 1938 is a Ghanaian Diplomat who served as the seventh Secretary-General of the United Nations Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti ( Arabic: ar صدام حسين عبد المجيد التكريتي --> April 28 1937 &ndash December 30
While at UNSCOM Butler frequently argued that Saddam had undisclosed weapons of mass destruction. A weapon of mass destruction ( WMD) is a weapon which can kill large numbers of humans and/or cause great damage to man-made structures (e In a 1999 speech he said:
He also accused Iraq of actively concealing its weapons and obstructing UNSCOM's work:
In a 1999 interview he said:
In 1998 Iraq accused Butler and other UNSCOM officials of acting as spies for the United States, but the UNSCOM weapons inspectors were not expelled from the country by Iraq as has often been reported (and as George W. Year 1998 ( MCMXCVIII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display full 1998 Gregorian calendar) Bush alleged in his infamous "axis of evil" speech). Rather, according to Butler himself in his book Saddam Defiant (2000), it was U. S. Ambassador Peter Burleigh, acting on instructions from Washington, who suggested Butler pull his team from Iraq in order to protect them from the forthcoming U. S. and British airstrikes. A number of media reports in the United States suggested that there was some substance to the spying allegations and to the charge that he was tailoring UNSCOM's findings to suit the United States. Eric Fournier, a French diplomat who served as Butler's deputy at UNSCOM in 1998, told an Australian journalist, Christopher Kremmer, that the US bombing of Iraq in 1998 -- which made the UNSCOM mission untenable -- occurred "because Richard Butler reported that the Iraqis had not cooperated with inspections, even though more than three hundred had taken place in a few weeks and only a handful had been a problem. Three out of three hundred did not go perfectly smoothly. . . the report, drafted like that, was a good excuse for some members of the Security Council to take action".  Fournier also told Kremmer that Butler at one point sounded positive about closing the disarmament issue. But then he received a call from the state department who weren’t happy with a positive outcome in Iraq.
Both the Washington Post and the Boston Globe, citing anonymous sources, said that Butler had known of and co-operated with a US electronic eavesdropping operation that allowed intelligence agents to monitor military communications in Iraq. The Washington Post is the largest and most circulated Newspaper in Washington D The Boston Globe (and Boston Sunday Globe) is the most widely circulated daily Newspaper in Boston and in New England, This was confirmed by UNSCOM insider Rod Barton on Australian television in February 2005. This intelligence was used to target US air attacks on Iraq.
Butler admitted that foreign intelligence agencies were being used to locate Iraqi WMD but denied allegations that he colluded with the U. S. to access Saddam Hussein's private channel via "piggybacking" UNSCOM. He also stated that foreign intelligence activities decreased during 1998.  He was publicly supported by Kofi Annan, but Annan was reported to be privately seeking Butler's resignation, which occurred a few months later. After leaving UNSCOM in 1999 Butler was a Diplomat-in-Residence at the Council of Foreign Relations. Year 1999 ( MCMXCIX) was a Common year starting on Friday (link will display full 1999 Gregorian calendar) The Council on Foreign Relations ( CFR) is an American Nonpartisan foreign policy membership organization founded in 1921 and based at 58 East 68th Street (at
During the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Butler, despite his earlier criticism of Saddam Hussein, opposed the US-led invasion and Australian participation in it. The 2003 invasion of Iraq, from March 20 to May 1 2003 was spearheaded by the United States, backed by British forces and smaller contingents from Australia In July 2003 he called for the resignations of Prime Minister John Howard and Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, who he said had misled the Australian people over the war. Year 2003 ( MMIII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. See also Howard Government John Winston Howard AC (born 26 July 1939 was the 25th Prime Minister of Australia from 11 March Alexander John Gosse Downer (born 9 September 1951 is an Australian Liberal politician who was Foreign Minister of Australia from March 1996 to December
In August 2003 the Labor Premier Jim Bacon announced the appointment of Butler as Governor of Tasmania for a five-year term. Year 2003 ( MMIII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. James Alexander Bacon AC ( 15 May 1950 - 20 June 2004) was Premier of Tasmania from 1998 to 2004 The Governor of Tasmania is the representative in the Australian state of Tasmania of Elizabeth II, Queen of Australia. He was sworn in on 3 October. Events 42 BC - First Battle of Philippi: Triumvirs Mark Antony and Octavian fight an indecisive battle with Caesar's Although the office is largely ceremonial, Butler was paid an annual salary of A$370,000, higher than that for any other Australian state Governor, and higher even than the Governor-General's salary. The term governor general or governor-general refers to a vice-regal representative of a Monarch in an independent realm or a major colonial circonscription His appointment was criticised on the grounds that he was not Tasmanian by either birth or association, that he was too closely identified with the Labor Party, and that he was a republican, and thus not a suitable person to represent the Queen of Australia, Elizabeth II, in Tasmania. Republicanism is the Ideology of governing a nation as a Republic, with an emphasis on Liberty, Rule of law, Popular sovereignty TalkCommonewalth realm.-->The monarchy For the ship see RMS Queen Elizabeth 2 Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Context States headed by Elizabeth II
Butler sought to ease such fears by saying: "I will give no gratuitous offence to any monarchist. It would be pointless and offensive to do so. The day will come when the next part of the Australian story will be told, but in the meantime we get on with our story today and the process of building and making Tasmania grow. "
He added: "I hope my international knowledge, my contacts, my experience in the global environment will enable me to make a contribution to the growing international awareness of Tasmania. "
He married Dr Jennifer Grey, his third wife, the day after he was sworn in as Governor (many thought for pension reasons), and commenced his term by leaving for a three-week overseas honeymoon. Many observers felt this was an inappropriate way to show his commitment to the people of Tasmania.
Criticisms of various kinds continued thereafter. When Butler broke with established vice-regal convention against public comment on domestic and international affairs, the Premier (Paul Lennon, who had replaced Jim Bacon in February 2004), specifically requested him to refrain from doing so. Paul Anthony Lennon (born 8 October 1955)is an Australian Labor Party politician
In early August 2004, the Tasmanian Liberal Opposition Leader, Rene Hidding, withdrew his support for Butler, and a federal Labor Member of Parliament, Harry Quick, also criticised him. The Liberal Party of Australia is an Australian political party. Marinus Theodoor "Rene" Hidding (born 5 February 1953) is an Australian politician The Parliaments of the Australian states and territories are legislative bodies within the federal framework of the Commonwealth of Australia. Harry Vernon Quick (born 28 June 1941) is an Australian politician In the same week, three long-serving staff members at Government House resigned. They did not reveal their reasons. It was reported that the head of the Premier's Department Linda Hornsey, who herself had been responsible for 'vetting' Butler's background before his appointment, told one of the staff members to resign or be sacked, but at whose instigation this is not known.
These departures occurred while Butler was once again on leave, this time for two weeks, during which time he made three public appearances in performances of Samuel Barber's Lincoln Portrait (a work for speaker and orchestra) with the Sydney Symphony. Samuel Osborne Barber II ( March 9, 1910 – January 23, 1981) was an American Composer of Orchestral, Opera, Lincoln Portrait is an Orchestral work written by the American composer Aaron Copland. The Sydney Symphony is a Symphony orchestra based in Sydney, Australia. Reporters tried to speak to Butler while on his way to rehearsals of this work, but were told to leave him and his wife alone as they were "on holiday". He was nevertheless billed for the performance as "The Hon Richard Butler, Governor of Tasmania".
When asked for his view of the growing public controversy about Butler's performance and behaviour as Governor, the Prime Minister John Howard said he would not comment on a matter reserved for state authorities, but he nevertheless made the point, repeatedly, that "this was not my appointment". The Prime Minister of Australia is the Head of government of the Commonwealth of Australia, holding office on commission from the Governor-General. See also Howard Government John Winston Howard AC (born 26 July 1939 was the 25th Prime Minister of Australia from 11 March (However, a few days later he expressed the view that the appointment had always been "inappropriate" given Mr Butler's anti-monarchist stance. )
On the evening of 9 August, after a three-hour meeting with Lennon to discuss the issues, Butler tendered his resignation with immediate effect. Events 48 BC - Caesar's civil war: Battle of Pharsalus - Julius Caesar decisively defeats Pompey at Pharsalus It was agreed that he and his wife could remain at Government House until 3 September. Events 36 BC - In the Battle of Naulochus, Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa, Admiral of Octavian, defeats Sextus Pompeius Butler then issued a press release, referring to "malicious" attacks on him and his wife. "It is with great sadness that I take this decision," he said in the statement. "I have always acted with the best interests of the state at heart and, consistent with that, I felt bound to make this decision. "
The real reasons for Butler's resignation remained a mystery, but it is believed that the Premier ultimately decided that 'enough is enough', as the governorship, far from being a unifying office above party politics, was constantly on the front page. Butler's supporters held he had been hounded from office by monarchists and the Murdoch press. is gay Bold text' Keith Rupert Murdoch', AC, KCSG (born Melbourne, March 11 1931 usually known as Rupert Murdoch, is an Australian-American It is true that the Murdoch-owned Hobart newspaper The Mercury ran a series of articles critical of Butler's performance in the lead-up to his resignation. is gay Bold text' Keith Rupert Murdoch', AC, KCSG (born Melbourne, March 11 1931 usually known as Rupert Murdoch, is an Australian-American The Mercury is a daily Newspaper, published in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia, by Davies Brothers Pty Ltd part of News Limited These aired such matters as his lengthy honeymoon, his alleged inability to get on with staff, and his allegedly arrogant and patronising manner.
On 5 August The Mercury carried an article reporting the University of Tasmania political scientist Richard Herr as saying that "recent goings-on at Government House appeared inconsistent with legislation attached to the office of Governor. Events 642 - Battle of Maserfield - Penda of Mercia defeats and kills Oswald of Bernicia. The University of Tasmania (also abbreviated as UTAS UTas or Tas Uni is an Australian University, with three campuses in Tasmania. " Some of the matters raised included an alleged breach of protocol with the welcome of the Botswanan High Commissioner and a luncheon given for him, at which Dr Jennifer Butler officiated. The Republic of Botswana (Lefatshe la Botswana is a Landlocked nation in Southern Africa. High Commissioner is the title of various high-ranking special executive positions held by a commission of appointment The point was made that the wife of a governor has no status in her own right during the governor's absence, and that this function should have been hosted by the Lieutenant-Governor the Hon William (Bill) Cox. A Lieutenant Governor is a high officer of state whose precise role and rank vary by jurisdiction William John Ellis Cox, AC, RFD, ED, QC (born 1 April 1936, Hobart, Tasmania) was Governor of
Writers at the Australian online news and opinion website Crikey. Crikey is an independent Australian electronic magazine comprising an open access website and an email newsletter available to subscribers com. au offered several explanations for the crisis. One writer said: "It appears that News Ltd (the Murdoch publishing company) has an agenda to have him removed, and seem to be very poorly informed. News Corporation (often abbreviated to News Corp) (,,) is one of the world's largest media conglomerate companies by Market capitalisation For example in today's Mercury, they are on the case again saying that the three top aides have resigned because the place is a shambles. Well, that is not true. "
This writer continued: "What is the Mercury's agenda, and what exactly is its motivation, that would make a good story. Ask about the get-Butler memo doing the rounds in News Ltd, and ask where did it originate, the answer could be surprising. "
Another writer at Crikey. com. au, however, described Butler as "a rude and arrogant bore, not able to get on with his staff, let alone his constituents. " This writer quoted Dr Richard Herr from the University of Tasmania as saying that there were "real legal and constitution queries over the things Butler is doing. The University of Tasmania (also abbreviated as UTAS UTas or Tas Uni is an Australian University, with three campuses in Tasmania. " These included "changes to the office instigated by the Butlers [that] may amount to conventional and constitutional impropriety. "
Upon Butler's resignation, the Lieutenant-Governor and the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Tasmania, the Hon William (Bill) Cox, was appointed Acting Governor. The Chief Justice in many countries is the name for the presiding member of a Supreme Court in Commonwealth or other countries with an Anglo-Saxon justice system based on English The Supreme Court of Tasmania is the highest State Court in the Australian State of Tasmania. He quickly set about restoring the dignity of the office, and was later that year appointed Governor.
The day after Butler's resignation, the Premier Paul Lennon said that he had offered Butler an ex gratia payment of A$650,000 in compensation for the loss of four years' expected income from the remainder of his five-year term. Ex gratia (sometimes ex-gratia) is Latin (lit by favour and is most often used in a Legal context This payment, which was not constitutionally required, was widely criticised in the press and by the Tasmanian Opposition. Both the Prime Minister, John Howard and the federal Opposition Leader, Mark Latham, were critical of the payment, which Latham described as "sickening. See also Howard Government John Winston Howard AC (born 26 July 1939 was the 25th Prime Minister of Australia from 11 March Mark William Latham (born 28 February 1961) a former Australian politician was leader of the Federal Parliamentary Australian Labor Party "
Sir Guy Green
|Governor of Tasmania|
2003 – 2004