So, finally, there may be some light let into the fog that has blocked off the RSL and its activities for many years.
I have no knowledge of the alleged financial problems but I am well aware of the stuck-in-the-past (WW1) attitude of the RSL as we know it. I have accumulated a file inches thick over the past few years asking for recognition of WW2 servicemen and particularly New Guinea but – alas RSL thoughts start and end with The Western Front and Gallipoli and the March. To my requests that more recognition be given to activities in WW2 such as a Day for those activities especially in New Guinea, I have had a standard reply:   Änzac Day covers all servicemen, to which I have replied “ask any child in the street what Anzac (Day) means and they will   tell you Gallipoli”. They don’t even think about North Africa, Greece, Crete, Syria and finally, and so importantly regarding the possible invasion of Australia – New Guinea.
It was salt on the wounds to hear an American Admiral on ship celebrating The Battle of the Coral Sea refer to heading off the invasion of Australia…a history that local historians and the RSL have been trying to re-write for over 65 years selling the fact that there was no suggestion of a possible invasion.. Amazing – the Japanese had fought from their islands right down through SE Asia and then New Guinea – up and down the Owen Stanley Ranges – to….what? sit in Port Moresby – well that’s what the RSL and local historians would have us believe but obviously the American Navy doesn’t think that.
So – good on the investigators – they may bring the RSL up to date and into the 21st century.