Author(s): Geoffrey Robertson, QC
Christopher Hitchens described Geoffrey Robertson as 'the greatest living Australian' and the satirical magazine Private Eye calls him 'an Australian who has had a vowel transplant'. Just before he was to cross-examine Princess Diana, the London Times complained that he was 'anti-establishment, republican and Australian' - in ascending order of horror. Internationally recognised as one of the world's leading human rights lawyers and as an intellectual inspiration for the global justice movement, he regularly boomerangs back from leading Europe's largest civil liberties practice to the land of his birth and his youth. Just as his Hypotheticals dazzled television audiences, so the speeches and essays collected in this book provoke, disturb and entertain. Here you will find new heroes in our history, such as the schoolteacher who stopped Ned Kelly's planned terrorist atrocity at Glenrowan, and the squadron leader who led 'the few' - the airmen who held the Japanese at bay after the fall of Singapore. There are insights into Australian education, the story of wrongly jailed Aboriginal mother Nancy Young, encounters with Vaclav Havel, Rupert Murdoch, Michael Kirby, John Mortimer and Julian Assange, the transcript of a previously banned Hypothetical, reflections on worldwide problems such as torture, terrorism and the Catholic church, and much else besides. With his trademark intelligence, humour and humanity, Robertson's expatriate (but not ex-patriot) vision picks the real winners and losers in the Australian race.
Geoffrey Robertson Q.C. is founder and head of the world's largest human rights practice, in London. He has prosecuted Hastings Banda, defended Julian Assange and acted for Human Rights Watch in the proceedings against General Pinochet. He served as the first president of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (which indicted Charles Taylor) and as a 'distinguished jurist' member of the UN's Internal Justice Council. He has argued landmark cases at the European Court of Human Rights and The Hague war crimes tribunals, and has held office of Recorder (part-time judge) for many years in London. His books include Crimes Against Humanity u The Struggle for Global Justice; The Tyrannicide Brief (the story of how Cromwell's lawyers mounted the first trial of a head of state; Statute of Liberty and an acclaimed memoir, The Justice Game. He is a Master of the Middle Temple and a Visiting Professor at the New College of the Humanities. In 2011 he was awarded the New York Bar Association's prize in international policy and law.