The Pope's Battalions

Fitzgerald, Ross The Pope's Battalions. University of Queensland Press, 2003.

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Author Fitzgerald, Ross
Title The Pope's Battalions
Publisher University of Queensland Press
Publication year 2003
Subjects 430101 History - Australian
360101 Australian Government and Politics
Abstract/Summary This is chapter 1 of The Pope's Battalions by Ross Fitzgerald. A prophet whose confident prophecies were frequently proved wrong, B. A. Santamaria profoundly affected 20th century Australian political life. Although he rarely gave interviews and never held elected office, Santamaria became widely known through his regular commentaries in the Australian and in his magazine News Weekly. The Pope's Battalions considers Santamaria's role and influence from the late 1930s - when he was a young Catholic Actionist in Melbourne - to his death in 1998. This prominent Cold War warrior founded the secretive National Civic Council and was the brains behind the Democratic Labor Party. His militant political Catholicism was central to the traumatic mid-1950s split in the ALP which kept the party out of office until the 1970s. Building on his battle against Communist influence in the trade unions, Santamaria boldly attempted to capture the ALP and transform it into a European-style Christian Democrat party. The ensuing split was disastrous, demoralising the ALP, and casting Santamaria out of the Labor fold for all time. Whitlam's electoral victories finally put out the lights for the DLP, and Santamaria thereafter found new dragons to fight, including secular humanism, feminism, permissiveness and the decline of the family. To the end he maintained his unflagging, if sometimes contradictory, opposition to both Communism and capitalism.
Keyword Fitzgerald
Australian Labor Party
B. A. (Bartholomew Augustine)
Democratic Labor Party
Australian politics
Australian government
Catholic Church
Additional Notes This is chapter 1 of this title. To buy the book through the UQ Bookshop, click on the link above and follow the instructions.

Document type: Book
Collection: UQ Press - books, book chapters and bibliographies
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Created: Tue, 22 Nov 2005, 10:00:00 EST by Paul Boland