Coda: On finally realising the game is up
Recent Notes 2: Enga locks down

Recent Notes 1: On Recent Notes


Soon after I ceased publishing daily articles on the already economy-size PNG Attitude,  I realised (1) I should not bail on people commenting on the 17,000 plus pieces on the website, and (2) I could offer occasional items that readers, and I, found relevant to PNG/Australia in my reading. Recent Comments is not particularly labour-intensive and can serve a useful purpose.

Typepad statistics tell me that between 750 and 1,000 people are still visiting the site each day so I've now resolved to leave the door open for information longer than a comment but much shorter than an essay. Recent Notes is it. So read on.  Bel bilong mi i stap iet.


Writing in, Ian Anderson says that, with the death of Dr Peter McCawley AM, "Australia – and the Asia-Pacific region more broadly – has just lost one of its most gifted development economists". Dr McCawley died peacefully in Canberra  on 18 July, having had cancer for some time. In addition to other senior appointments, Dr McCawley was economic adviser to two senior Federal ministers, Bill Hayden in 1974-75 and John Kerin in 1991. You can read Ian Anderson's eulogy here.


Tony Gentile of the Pacific Islands Monthly Association, writes that Emeritus Professor Grant McCall  died unexpectedly on 22 July of acute heart failure at St George Hospital in Sydney.  Professor McCall, an anthropologist,  had been a strong supporter of PIM with regular attendance at its lunches and providing the magazine with information on his research activities in the Pacific when he was travelling.  "I have also known Grant through his membership of the Friends of the La Perouse Museum over many years," Tony says.


In 1971 General Idi Amin, supported by the British and Israeli governments, overthrew the democratically-elected government of Ugandan President Milton Obote.  Alex Mitchell was the first reporter to interview Amin, later exposing his crimes in a documentary for Britain’s Granada Television.

Now a prolific author, Alex's new book, Idi Amin: The Man Who Stole Uganda,  tells the story of one of the most hair-raising assignments of his long career – including the swimming race he lost to Amin to secure the interview and the mad dash to the airport after it.

The book provides Alex's reflections on the dark workings of latter-day colonialism. It will be published next month in paperback and is available for $25 including postage within Australia by emailing Judith White here. Overseas readers can use the same email and Judith promises to reply within 24 hours. Alex also publishes a lively blog, which you can link to here.


Self-described "avid bowhunter" Michael Luxford, a member of the Australian Bowhunters Association  recently came across an October 2010 article in PNG Attitude while "researching for hunting outfitters in New Guinea". The article, Bowhunting Adventure up the Fly,

Michael says that PNG Safaris was operated by Bruce Alexander, who was considered an outfitter who organised "what was surely an amazing hunting and cultural experience". Michael hasn't been able to find any information about PNG Safaris and Alexander and hopes that a reader could inform him if they're still in operation and how to contact them. And, if not, "are there other operations who take people sustainable deer hunting."


A few years back our Tumby Bay correspondent, Phil Fitzpatrick, did some voluntary work with the former Curator of Anthropology at the South Australia Museum. "The work  resulted in a couple of publications," says Phil, who recently came across a colourful 94-page PDF presentation, written in 2018, titled New Guinea: What I Did and What I Saw.

"Because my father fought at Sattelberg in the hills west of Finschhafen in 1943," Barry writes, "I became fascinated by New Guinea and read avidly. After studying anthropology at the University of Sydney I went to PNG as an Education Officer in 1962. I asked to be posted to Telefomin, where I lived from 1962-65.

"In 1965 I participated in the three-month Australian Star Mountains Expedition. We walked from Telefomin to the southern side of the Star Mountains, climbed the highest peaks (c. 4,000 metres) and returned in separate parties by two routes to Telefomin." It's hard to describe Michael's presentation in a few words, but it is an absolutely wonderful record of the art, artefacts and people he came across during his time in PNG. 


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Slim Kaikai

Wan Bel.... Kaikai bilong tingting. Yumi flowya em bai goya nating truya. Full support.

Thinking Out Loud Now.

I reckon a lot of 'umiyetya' would like to encourage you and us to somehow continue....ya.

What you have created is very hard to believe is finishing.

Tenkyu tru Slim, emi gutpela tingting. Sapos dispela bikpela sik ibagarpim mi i pinis, mi ken. Tasol nau mi no nap - KJ

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)