Fractured Notes On The Fractured Life
Of David Greason
A Propaganda Text Is Born
When David Greason published his I Was A Teenage Fascist (Fitzroy: Gribble,1994), it was regarded as the inside story on the Australian ‘Right’ for the years 1976-82. Here was David Greason, repentant of his sins, telling us all about the weaknesses, foibles and dirty secrets of the patriotic movement. An extreme-rightist militant had supposedly changed sides - and stepped into the liberal light.
The book was launched by the ‘Leader of the Opposition’ in Victoria. It had rave-reviews in the media. Greason appeared on television and radio. Justice Marcus Einfeld shook his hand and recommended the book. Before too long, Greason, a part-time columnist for Australia-Israel Review, was able to rise to be its deputy-editor, and smear patriotic groups whenever he chose. After all, he was an ‘expert’. The Left announced Greason to be the man with the facts. The Trotskyite Green Left Weekly paper reviewed his book, and freely quoted him. The mono-neurons of the International Socialist Organisation (ISO) had already accepted his ‘guidance’ in various protests against ‘racist groups’ in the years 1992-3, so they too endorsed the book.
We know now (see P. Giannopoulos’s pamphlet on this site) that Greason’s story was extensively plagiarised from the work of Cold War Communist Party of Australia defector, Cecil Herbert Sharpley. Greason plagiarised Sharpley for dialogue, theme and description, ie. in some sections, he merely changed the time, place and politics. There were also other sources for his plagiarism. The curious should go to the Giannopoulos document. Basically: the Greason book was an intellectual fraud.
Our task here is different. We want to know what drove Greason into his dramatic conversion.
We want to determine whether a certain period in his personal history coloured his thoughts, such that his versions of events are inevitably – faulty. We will examine whether David Greason has any credibility at all. We are persuaded that his sojourn in Sydney from November 1981 until early 1983 tells us everything we want to know. Events are recorded in short and explanative narratives. These short narratives expose the essential untruthfulness of whole blocks of Greason’s text and demonstrate how anti-racism, the liberal core ideological concept, is always served by an arsenal of falsity.
The Teenage Fascist story was more than a personal tale dished up as ‘anti-racist’ propaganda. It was a script directed at persons prominent in one way or another in Nationalist, patriotic and anti-immigration organizations. It was calculated to discredit people in the then-present, by cooking up a tale or two from the past. It was also intended that the patriotic cause overall – be discredited. If the ‘cause’ at issue was whacko when Greason was involved, then it could hardly be credible in 1994, could it? Quite frankly, to answer Greason’s falsities point by point would serve very little purpose, even if it could be done, and allowing too that our readers were very patient . However, it seems the ultimate aim of the book was to create Greason as an ‘expert’ and allow him to appear in the media to criticise a number of organizations in the period 1994-1998. It is this which must be criticised trenchantly.
"Two can play that game" of getting personal with chosen targets. In our case, it is a matter of simply telling the truth. By making the truth about Greason’s past freely available, we cut off his utility in the present.
Not that he has much utility in the cause of liberal ‘anti-racism’ these days. After that little 1998 debacle when he published in Australia-Israel Review a list of 1700 names/addresses of One Nation Party members, he was quietly pushed from the limelight. The affair blew the Jewish community into rival fractions on the issue of such ‘anti-racist’ intimidation. Nonetheless, Greason will inevitably reappear in some capacity. His book will continue to be quoted as an accurate biographical work that exposed the racist perverts of its day.
This pamphlet is composed by a few persons. The authors of this pamphlet (with the exception of one person) necessarily remain – anonymous. It should not be assumed that those quoted are necessarily the anonymous authors.
1. The Train To Manchester.
As David Greason told the story (to an official of the old Melbourne National Action movement, one day in early 1984, and as he strolled the street with his male lover), he was walking the streets of Melbourne late one evening in "mid-1983". He was pulled over by police who politely asked him where he was going. "I’m going to get a train home". "Where’s home?", asked the police officer. "Manchester", he replied. Upon further inquiry, he confirmed that he meant Manchester – England.
Subsequent to this exchange, David Greason spent some time in a Melbourne psychiatric institution. This fact is well known in various quarters, but was unknown to the Left (until we told them!). It was unknown to most journalists and was one of Australia-Israel Review’s prize secrets. Even today, Australia-Israel Review says not a word about Greason’s stint in the ‘bin’. It was certainly unknown to the well-meaning geese who fell in behind his lead in the early 1990’s, when he went into the streets as an anti-racist militant, in the company of the International Socialist Organisation . And needless to say, Dave is silent about it.
We do not say here that psychiatric treatment in the past implies that David Greason is ‘unwell’ now, or ‘unwell’ when he wrote his book. No, but we would suggest that this experience reasonably determined his aversion to his subject. It would colour his interpretations of events and persons. If one thing comes through clearly in Teenage Fascist, it is the author’s overwhelming sense of ‘guilt’. He has disavowed his previous ideology (whatever precisely that was) and is ashamed of it. If he was in psychiatric care, the process by which he reintegrated his fractured personality (see below), would be decisive. Did he transfer his maladies to others? Is this why so much of Teenage Fascist was simply – untrue or plagiarised?
2. The Phone Rings – And Dave Decides To Move To Sydney.
In 1981, Dave Greason lived in Melbourne. He had been associated with the Australian League Of Rights and People Against Communism (1976-78), the National Front of Australia (1978-79) and Australian National Alliance (1979-81). He had returned to Britain in 1977 and spent a little time with the British National Front. In 1981, the Australian Nationalist scene was in flux, and the birth of Australian National Action (ANA) was not to occur til April 1982. The Melbourne picture was not promising for the new Nationalist perspective and Greason was one of a small circle of people who did what they could. That much of his account, is true.
In I Was A Teenage Fascist (hereafter – TF), Greason records (TF 266) that he was in the Public Service when he: "went off on sick leave and I was seeing the department psychologist and doing aptitude tests and I had this idea … I could pull off the shirker’s bonanza, put my hand up and say ‘sorry I’ve been driven completely mad … and get pensioned off."
In fact, Greason had a peculiar malady. Each time his office phone rang, he lost control of his bladder. Pavlov's dog had to run to the toilet, and sometimes he didn’t make it.
It was late 1981, and this sad loss of bladder control was symptomatic of a breakdown in Greason’s life. In TF, Greason would have us believe that he progressively became disillusioned with his comrades in Melbourne and later in Sydney. In fact, he became overborne by existence: one girlfriend (platonic) chose the company of another man, while another (platonic) chose a woman. Greason’s sex-life, as TF suggests at more than one point, was to that stage at least – autosexual. His lack of any emotional outlet other than ‘release’ in the company of political persons says a lot, more about a troubled youth than any sort of politics. Greason’s experience might be regarded as an indictment of Australia’s drift into social desert conditions. But let us not get too philosophic about it.
Greason also tells us that (TF 262-3) he was disturbed by the fact that a Melbourne anarchist – Ted Murphy – had exposed in the student press in mid 1981, the ‘fact’ that the Nationalist ideology was a species of fascism, perhaps not neo-nazism, but fascism nonetheless. Greason said he had hoped we could get away from the ‘fascist’ tag. The tale sounded credible, but the truth was different. In fact, Greason had thrown a brick into Murphy’s home and (luckily) the shattering glass just missed Murphy and his female companion. Greason was struck by his foolishness as he told one Nationalist. He had almost injured someone for no reason other than: "I regarded Murphy as an idiot and stirrer". Guilt played upon his mind. Yes, Greason was annoyed by Murphy’s article, but that was never his point. Around mid 1981, Greason said to Melbourne Nationalists that he would write a book; he would look into ways to build Nationalism while avoiding the label of fascism. A worthy project, if he had ever really intended to write it or even research it. The idea of writing a book was a long-time-coming, and of course, TF is his book.
Greason decided he needed a change of scene and in late October 1981, advised the Nationalists that he intended to move to Sydney.
3. "Don’t Argue, Just Call Them Nazis."
In mid-November 1981, Saleam was in Melbourne .There was a meeting between Saleam, Greason and Melbourne Nationalist organizer, Eugene Donnini. The discussion was meaningless to this pamphlet, save for one phase. The three discussed (among other things) the tactics the opposition should employ to deal with any Nationalist movement. Greason said the best propaganda solution was: never argue or debate, don’t discuss our views rationally in the street-papers etc., don’t run campaigns against our ideas where it can be helped; just repeat over and over, and in every way possible, that we were "Nazis" or "neo-nazis". Donnini and Saleam concurred. Given the British and U.S. experience, this position was undoubtedly correct. History has shown since that "neo-nazism" is the classic term of abuse. It has been used for years in the media, the Left and the ‘anti-racist’ organizations.
Greason has not erred from employing this discourse as his function as an ‘anti-racist’ journalist, amply shows. His articles in Australia-Israel Review and his campaigns side by side with the Trotskyites, reveal this to be his fundamental line of approach.
It is actually a quite rewarding strategy. Greason learned it in part from his ‘examination’ of the 1977-79 campaign of the ‘Anti-Nazi League’ in Britain as directed at the then National Front. While there were certainly other factors in the political defeat of the NF in this period, the "Nazi" baiting of the Trotskyite-operated Anti-Nazi League was a significant factor in the political decline of the NF. Greason also identified how, whenever Nationalists were active, pocket neo-nazis were trotted out to make lunatic statements that were then published side-by-side with reports of Nationalist action. He now uses the same technique.
4. "I’m The Best Thief In Town."
Around November 20 1981, Greason arrived in Sydney.
The personal life-style adopted by Greason during his period in Sydney suggested psychological decay.
The story told in TF is one where Greason will admit to adolescent problems, but essentially wants the reader to believe that he became gradually aware of the moral and political shortcomings of Nationalists and other patriots, and that he was ultimately compelled to confront his own internal demon. Of course, this account was untrue.
In the period from November 1981 until July 1982, at which time the National Action organization severed its relationship with Greason (thereby cutting him adrift from the whole Right scene), it should not be assumed, as TF implies, that he was in continuous contact with the Nationalists and played any substantial role in the evolution of this new politics. Quite the contrary. His contact with Nationalist and patriotic groups was episodic and only a part of the frenetic activity in which he engaged.
Greason’s chief activity involved stealing books in considerable quantity from Glebe Books, Bob Gould’s bookshops and the Socialist Party’s ‘New Era’ in George Street. As he said it: "I’m the best thief in town". Greason would sell his treasure to second hand dealers. He called it all "revolutionary expropriations". He spent some of the money on a rather busty English (non-political) girl who happened to work in one of his target bookshops. Sadly, she wasn’t interested in him either. He spent money on long overseas phone calls (to the British National Front) and photocopying at the State Library.
The young ‘fascist’ lived in a series of share-houses, meeting his rent with difficulty whilst trying to travel about. He was pathetic. His words in TF on this occasion are truthful, and we record them. He described himself as: "fat, spotty, sexually and socially inept, no money, no job, no self-esteem, polyester shirts, always desperate for a fuck…"
Greason also collected "files" on those who he regarded as enemies. The Left featured heavily there and some of that information was indeed passed onto the Nationalists. However, as he told ‘Shane’, he considered the Left rather hopeless and unable to invent any new ideology to challenge the system. Yet, he was intrigued by how they managed to publish newspapers and maintain bookshops. This was a secret he wanted to probe. It had something to do with "commitment" he told another. Greason also investigated the ISO. He regarded them as "easily hyped up idiots", a description he undoubtedly carried over into his scheme to direct them at Nationalists and other patriots. The Trotskyites should not imagine that his contempt for them has ever dissipated.
5. "Bite The Pillow, Bitch."
In TF (154), Greason recounts a story. He says that Nationalists would sit around discussing ex-Australian Nazi party activists like "Gary Mangan", and generally doing nothing. His words were:
".this meant talking wistfully about someone we knew (often some alcoholic NSPA type like Gary Mangan who didn’t care any more).."
This tale is a curiosity as shall become apparent, and this story is integrally linked to yet another of Greason’s fairy-tales (that somehow there was a link between the 1970’s form of neo-nazism and Australian patriotic organizations and ideology). The truth nonetheless - is startling. Let us untangle the lies, and then, get to the truth, bearing in mind as we go that these words about Mangan express a bitterness seemingly without purpose.
In TF (269), Greason recounts a story of Saleam meeting in the street with the Australian neo-nazi chief of the 1970’s, Cass Young. They get on famously and repair somewhere for a friendly chat. Greason sees it all.
The truth however, was very different and involved a matter of no little relevance to the secret history of the political police, Australian Zionists and rightist politics. Certainly, Greason cannot (indeed must not) say how it was he came to meet Young, nor record what was discussed. His masters at Australia-Israel Review wouldn’t have approved at all.
In November 1981, Saleam accidentally came upon Young in a hotel in the Broadway area of Sydney. Young told the inside story of the National Socialist Party of Australia (NSPA) in the years 1971-3. The facts appear on this site in the documents Lessons For Nationalists and in Chapter Two of The Other Radicalism. Young told how he forged an arrangement with Zionist leader Abraham Cykiert to harass left-wing militants. He said his campaign of violence was encouraged by the Special Branch although he would not say exactly what Special Branch ordered. He said he eventually had to get out of Melbourne because of ASIO pressure related to the attempt of the Labor government to uncover the links between political police agencies and anti-communists such as the Nazi party. He steadfastly denied giving the Nazi membership files to ASIO or Special Branch (something about which he lied and as now revealed in released NSW Special Branch files).
Saleam told Greason of this conversation some time afterwards and that Young said he regularly attended the hotel. Apparently, Greason went there time after time, looking for Young. Finally, in January 1982, when he just happened to be in Saleam's company, he found Young. Young repeated the story. Greason was dumbstruck.
Within days, Greason informed Saleam by phone that he wanted to complete certain research on the Nazis. He understood from previous discussions with certain Nationalists that Gary Mangan, another ex-NSPA member, also had information on the political police. He went to hunt Mangan down. He found him. The account in TF refers to Mangan disparagingly as a broken-down drunk. We must now ask: why the hate?
In 1987, Mangan contacted Saleam. His motive in coming forward to provide an account of certain matters regarding the Nazi party, political violence in Queensland and so forth, might have been related to the fact that he committed suicide a few weeks afterwards. Was Mangan clearing away a small piece of unfinished business?
In this discussion, Mangan claimed that he had indeed met Greason in mid-late February 1982. He said Greason stayed with him for several days, almost a week. During that time, he said, they engaged in homosexual intercourse. Mangan’s bi-sexuality was well-known to most rightist activists who had ever heard of him and must have been already known to Greason.. Mangan laughed about the ‘affair’ and said, "you know, bite the pillow bitch..". Mangan had heard of Greason’s ‘conversion’ to Trotskyism and said he thought that was not out of character. "He seemed really confused." Where are we left? Greason, whose account of his sexuality implies that he was virginal in 1982, was possibly introduced to ‘sex’, in a homosexual encounter with a former ‘Nazi stormtrooper’.
Would this explain both the reference to Mangan and the untruthful discussion of the Young meeting (which instigated the contact with Mangan)? There is also the endless references to the Nazi party in TF which we need to place in perspective.
Of course, there is only Mangan’s word of this affair and Mangan is dead. We cannot thence say it is a matter open to formal ‘proof’, if we were challenged to ‘prove’ it. Hence we shall argue the case only at the level of possibility. We shall leave it to Greason, if he wishes, to take up the matter.
6. "Can Fascists Be Gay?"
Greason took to drinking in Darlinhurst bars in early 1982. Around this time, he asked several Nationalists: "can fascists be gay?". What did he mean?
Well, Greason was obviously debating with himself whether he could adopt a certain sexuality usually held out of favour within ‘Right’ circles. But still participate in this politics.
Given too that Greason would invent the most outrageous stories of his heterosexual accomplishments, it would seem he was heading in the ‘alternative’ direction.
It is probably that Greason’s sexuality helped mould the political course he ultimately followed. If he required acceptance, he would have to get it in the company of those who were politically – liberal.
To reject or to choose a type of politics upon the basis of ‘sexual preference’ scarcely implies the subject has any essential credibility.
6. "Those Niggers Are F…. White Women. Well, Burn, Baby Burn!….(!)"
In March 1982, Greason was conspiring to fire-bomb a Kings Cross disco known as ‘The Persian Room’.
It seems he had been wandering the Cross when one evening, he struck up a meeting with another ‘Dave’ then involved in preparatory organizing for a new Nationalist movement.
The two went to drink in a sleazy dive called The Persian Room. It seems there were a number of black men (either Negroes or Africans) in the bar. They were, in Greason’s words "chatting up a couple of sluts". This scene infuriated Greason and he contacted a few Nationalists. "Those niggers are f … white women. Well burn, baby, burn". But to one person (‘Dave’) Greason said he had a plan to turn his words into action.
Greason’s plan was to set off a petrol bomb in the Persian Room and throw another device into the stairwell on the way out. He would then slip into the crowd. He needed a confederate to help distract people and he mooted his scheme to ‘Dave’ and then to another comrade, ‘Mark’. The latter just didn’t take him seriously in any way at all, although ‘Dave’ reported subsequently that Greason’s scheme for the incendiary reached an "advanced stage". ‘Dave’ quietly excused himself from the plan.
As mercurially as everything else Greason did in the period, he dropped the idea of racial terrorism
Just after this incident, Greason was living in Darley Street St. Peters in a ‘share house’. He shared with two homosexuals and a ‘straight’ male. A visitor to the home was Don Dunstan, homosexual ex-Premier of South Australia. Dunstan was occasionally in company with an American Negro male who shared the shower with him – and one of the inhabitants in the house. Greason dropped the fire-bomb routine to ponder over the prospects of raising cash for his new book – by a little exercise of blackmail. That scheme never matured either. The house in question must have stayed a fertile subject for reflection in the mind of our ‘fascist’, since, as his story goes, he decided there on a new course of political action – and founded National Action. Needless to say, this story is yet another lie.
So, where are we left with the fire-bomb story? Does it show that persons whom are described as ‘racists’ are those who suffer from some sort of sexual frustration that takes the form of envying black males? Well, Greason doesn’t tell us this story, which really, he should have. Yet, if he had, it might have shown the workings of his mind. Might it not be the case that the stereotypical madcap racist – was actually Greason?
7. Greason Claims To Found National Action.
In TF (274-5) Greason tells us that one "Sunday afternoon" in March 1982, he and three other persons, casually founded the National Action movement. Yet, on another page (276), he refers to the group being launched in February and then it holds a formal-foundation on April 25 1982.
The story that Greason founded National Action, has been repeated by the Trotskyites. Of course, it was a good story and was meant not only to establish Greason’s credentials as a ‘defector’, but to demean genuine Nationalists as being involved in a movement actually founded by a liberal ‘defector’. Indeed!
In truth, Greason did attend a meeting in February 1982 where a decision was made by seventeen persons to establish a new Nationalist organization. A committee of three persons (excluding Greason) was deputised to lay the plans, and the movement was duly established on ANZAC day 1982. In his book, Greason glosses over that latter meeting – because he was not there.
On ANZAC day 1982, Greason was on a Hare Krshna property in northern New South Wales, living his secret life, wandering from group to group. "I went to the Hares after being at the Orange People ashram. They said I should go with them and I did. It’s the sort of thing that happens to me", he said. Greason returned to Sydney in early May – for a "date" with a girl from the pro-Moscow Socialist Party of Australia. That didn’t prosper either. At least National Action – did!
8. "A Mars Bar And A Coke."
When Greason resided in Sydney, his diet and his hygiene deteriorated. His hours varied and a nocturnal life-style developed.
Greason’s staples were "a Mars Bar and a Coke" – and sometimes salty chips in some quantity. The young ‘fascist’ became rotund. He cut a strange figure. His room in any number of share houses was littered with Coca Cola cans and bottles, chocolate wrappers of all sorts and half-eaten serves of chips. This scene reappears in TF (156)– as a description of the living habits of someone else. Invariably, his co-tenants would throw him out.
No wonder. His clothes would be filthy and sometimes the great revolutionary didn’t bath. Greason said of such criticism: "Che was not a Gucci radical", meaning he had a licence to be decidedly unappealing. Or was it he thought he was a little like – Che?
Throughout the Sydney sojourn any number of Nationalists (and other patriots) could expect long telephone calls from Greason, with in-depth quizzing about the history of organizations and individuals. If a joke was passed, Greason might subsequently confront a person, at the level of near-hysteria, trying to confirm whether the target of the joke had done the thing laughed about. When Greason started hanging around the Theosophical Society, one Canadian wag told him that the founders of the Australian National Alliance believed that they were the reincarnations of historical figures from the French Revolution. "I couldn’t resist: the bloke seemed as mad as a rabbit in his search to see if Theosophy could be used in the political struggle. I helped him along". In TF (284-287) Greason goes to town about that, pondering whether "we" had a "hidden agenda", and ‘cleverly’ attributes this "bizarre" revelation - to someone else. Of course, in this conversation, the person admits to Greason’s charge. And finally, Saleam, of all people confirms it all for him, shattering the last of his illusions. His friends for years are now – loonies of the first order.
The essential madness of Greason shows up here. He has learned that these loonies, reincarnations of French revolutionary figures, communicated via a Ouija board with the dead, yet in TF (16) Greason records his interest in Ouija boards, and playing at length with one. We can make the inevitable conclusion.
9. "I Think He’s Mad"
In TF (274), Greason refers to a female person with some derision, someone he’s met and who was sharing at the home of a Nationalist.
The woman spent some time in Greason’s company being probed by her and quietly harassed. She reported to Saleam: "I think he’s mad".
It was the first time the question of Greason’s sanity had been squarely raised. It was February 1982.
Greason stayed in the premises for two days while he assisted with the artwork for a Nationalist paper. It was at that time he made a contribution to Nationalist agitation, suggesting a poster on the issue of Japanese imperialism, featuring soldiers in 1942 garb and businessmen in 1982 suits. We cannot say Greason never did anything for Nationalism.
Greason said yet again about this time that he was planning a "book" on the Right. Then it was a "book to expose the failure of the Left". He was also planning the infiltration of the pro-Moscow Socialist Party and made enquiries about joining the Catholic priesthood. The people with whom Greason claims to have been intimately involved began at this moment not to wish to associate with him. Is that why TF places Greason at the centre of everything?
The woman against whom Greason railed (above) suggested Greason had been staring at her as she slept and may have stolen her underwear. Such pastimes should have been more ‘interesting’ than pseudo-political posturings. We hope Greason was doing these things. At least it showed an interest – in women.
10. Greason Opts Out.
In mid June 1982, Greason abruptly decided that the National Action group would only benefit if he took charge of it. At TF (276-7), we have a different time frame for the sort of drive referred to; here, Greason pre-dates it to a time before he ‘founds’ National Action. However, we put it in its proper location, with Greason grasping one-more-time to be some sort of big fish in the then-small pond of then-Right politics. Or any politics.
In May 1982, Greason had been hard to locate at his ‘home’. It is possible he had been busy trying to infiltrate the Socialist Labour League, a cultic Trotskyite group that casually relieved its youthful supporters of large sums of cash. Or he might have been back with the Orange People for the free meals.
Greason approached various persons. He said that he had been thinking hard about changing line to make it all more palatable to the public (that part of TF is true!), but that he knew how to do it. He said he had participated in a few of National Action’s activities to establish his credibility and to show up the leaders as incompetents and ideological dinosaurs (like when he disrupted a meeting at which Malcolm Fraser spoke). He said that if he was elevated to its committee and made its chairman, things would "move quickly".
The members of the group weren’t interested and told him so. They had long decided that Greason was ‘mad’ and of no account. Some documents, books and office equipment stored (for nominal rent) in a premises rented for a brief period by Greason, were removed. This incident led to a confrontation, somewhat floridly and inaccurately decribed (what’s new?) in TF. It was Greason’s reply to the suggestion he was "mad", which is of relevance. He said words like: "only when we get a synthesis of just about every main ideology into a really popular programme will you idiots get anywhere." In Greason’s mind, all ideologies had blurred and were basically "cons and tricks" (his words). Similarly, all organizations were just platforms for the realisation of some personal fantasy. Does this later explain Greason’s 1990’s work for rabid capitalist magazines and newspapers, his friendship with globalizers like Phil Ruthven and so on? When there’s no ‘faith’ any more, there’s always money.
Greason told ‘Dave’ that he was going to leave the political scene. He was "disillusioned", he said. There was still a hope he could find his way, or write that book. But being told he was no longer welcome around the National Action group was the final act of a long drama in the mind of our teenage fascist. He had "nowhere to go". He was told by ‘Dave’ that he should go home to his parents. Greason said he hated his father as much as he hated Saleam and "people like Eric Butler". ‘Dave’ went away thinking that Greason had identified these persons as substitute fathers or family members. Is TF therefore a work dealing with psychological disorder? There can be little doubt, when it is read critically from this perspective, that Greason’s political hates arise from a dysfunctional family and migrant experience. In this sense, we strongly recommend his book.
11. Greason Robs The Bank.
In late July 1982, Greason committed fraud and avoided arrest by the misplaced intervention of Saleam.
In his dealings with the National Action organization in the period around June 1982, Greason befriended ‘Dave’. Somehow he contrived a situation where documents were presented to the Westpac (or Bank of New South Wales at ‘Anchor House’ George Street, Sydney) that purportedly established him as a signatory to an account operated by the Nationalists.
On a day in the second week of July 1982, Saleam presented a cheque for cashing at the bank. Rather than the account being in credit to the sum of $100, it was in the red to some $90. As the matter was being discussed with management, in came the young fascist – with another cheque – this time for $100. Greason was "grabbed" by security and the matter hung in the balance. The manager was told that Greason was "unbalanced", and with our teenage fascist on the verge of tears in front of all, he was released. Needless to say Greason, despite his promise, never made good with the money.
As ‘Alan’ put it as he proceeded to a meeting to confront Greason in 1984: "Who knows? Saleam should have let him go down."
If that had been the course of events, the ‘reformed fascist’ might never have come into being. The book thief would have been convicted of ‘uttering’ and his career as an honest victim of bad company would have been a non-event.
12. Lost In Bohemia.
In the period from August 1982 until early 1983, Greason lived in Darlinghurst and surrounding suburbs. When he moved from a flat in Parramatta Road Lewisham in August, he simply ‘disappeared’.
His life in this phase was not recorded in TF. He does not explain much at all before he is getting ready to speak up about the rightist extremists in late 1983. So who was he associating with? What happened?
As best as we can trace it, Greason’s life in the period to early 1983 hit rock bottom.
He lived on unemployment benefits and moved in with homosexuals and/or marginal people. It was an odyssey. One witness said he took to drugs, but that is unsubstantiated. Another said, he knew him as a partner for well-heeled men, but that too has no corroborative source. Perhaps our teenage-fascist might enlighten us, but don’t hold your breath.
Being lost in bohemia was the beginning of a rebirth. Greason, at age 21, saw his life as meaningless. As an English migrant from a poorer family, he couldn't hope for much. His work career hadn’t been meritorious. He hated everyone he knew – and most of them were political people from the ‘Right’ side of politics. They were to blame.
In September 1982, Saleam and ‘Shane’ had been contacted by Greason who wanted to meet them at the ‘French’s Wine Bar’ in Darlinghurst. The meeting took place and Greason passed over $100 of some $400 that he had borrowed. The youth was less than heroic, pale, sniffling, distracted. He said that he was "wandering about". He nearly ran out of the door and into the night.
Greason had already started to sabotage those he didn’t like during his Sydney period – and they weren’t all in the National Action group either. He struck out at a neo-nazi con- man called Graeme Royce, damaging his property and making harassment calls. He stole books and money from the British-Israel World Federation. The Left (as we noted with the bookshop thefts) was hardly immune either; but Greason reserved a special hate for the Maoist communists, stealing books and property left outside their premises and cash from the cash drawer during a ‘visit’ to discuss politics. Amusingly, he urinated into a car driven by Al Grassby outside a meeting venue, not so much because Grassby was a multiculturalist liberal, but because the man couldn’t get his facts right about a "list of racist organizations". Greason had been to Grassby’s office to "correct" him but to no avail. The ‘hates’ formed in this period stayed with him and doubtlessly motivate him whenever an ‘anti-racist’ article is being prepared. What an ‘expert’!
13. "Tell A Jew What He Wants To Hear…"
As Greason told several Nationalists, he had once worked for the Melbourne Jewish Times. He liked it there, working in the office. His favourite "targets" (his words) were older Jewish ladies, sometimes from families who were placed in Nazi concentration camps or who were ‘Holocaust survivors’.
Greason would chat up the staff and customers. He would express his "interest in your experiences under the Nazis", a line of approach that would inevitably lead to paid, expensive lunches. As Greason told ‘Bob’: "tell a Jew what he wants to hear and you’ll have your hand in his pocket". It is a course of action that continued with Australia-Israel Review at least on one level: Greason ‘confirms’ their line and rises accordingly. Would this be an example of "the old double-dealing" as Greason put it in TF?
Part of Greason’s ‘success’ as an anti-racist has been to add his ‘facts’ to the prejudices of his Trotskyite and Jewish audiences. It definitely paid off. Yet, Greason may not have ever been totally frank with the Jewish organizations he later worked for.
And now a special story just for Michael Danby, Labor M.P., and for the boys at Australia-Israel Review.
It is a matter of history that Danby was a student activist at Melbourne University in the 1970’s, a Zionist, in a university where Maoist communists and Trotskyites (Trotskyites were not then as philosemitic as they have become), were very active. Danby got the reputation – rightly or wrongly – for being an informant for the Federal Police. So, one happy day in 1976, he was brutally bashed by Maoists in broad daylight. Greason always claimed to have actually witnessed the bashing. He said: "I saw it; I could have shouted out, ran for police, even run over and started screaming, but I didn’t. I just thought, ah well, so what, it’s only Danby".
Greason can tell Danby this is untrue. Yet, Danby isn’t silly. He’ll know it’s true. When Greason changed sides, he was in many ways the old "double-dealer" he always was. He may well have told people like Danby a lot of things, some true and some false, about the ‘Right’ scene. It’s unlikely he confessed this. We all suspect that Dave would have felt that warm inner glow from having a very-guilty-secret like this one, as he talked over political strategy with the staff at Australia-Israel Review.
14. The Case Of ‘Basil Recht’: A Proof Of Special Input And Purpose
TF (288,292) drops a hint, a suggestion, to those in the know, that he has had some special input into his book and is operating a secret agenda. This was always part of Greason’s method.
He mentions a character ‘Basil Recht’ at a Nationalist meeting and he describes in detail a supposed outrage perpetrated against him by this person – his expulsion from the world of Nationalist politics.
Yet, there was never any such person as ‘Basil Recht’. Greason has not made a mistake either, as the name given is a certain ‘play’ upon the actual name of a person known to him at the time..
Greason’s book is full of stories about all sorts of people under their true names. So why give dear old ‘Basil’ such a pseudonym?
Had Greason some pressing legal reason for this sleight of hand, he could have said something in the text to the effect that he was doing this for this purpose. But no, Greason did not do that.
We shall offer the reader our hypothesis. ‘Recht’ was recruited by the New South Wales Police Special Branch as an informant in March 1985. ‘Recht’ provided information against (mainly, but not exclusively) National Action and a certain Brisbane Nationalist group. There is a real possibility that he was, in conjunction with the activities of a foreign country in Australia, an informant for ASIO. Greason protected ‘Recht’ because ‘Recht’ was on the same side! We must ask therefore: how does Greason know?
It would be our conclusion that, just as Greason was ‘debriefed’ by the Federal Police around October 1983, for whatever he could say about a swathe of patriotic groups, so he has been privy to ‘intelligence’ information over the years. Working at Australia-Israel Review, would make that rather – inevitable. We were also advised that Greason was spoken to by the New South Wales Special Branch in 1989; the Branch was fishing for ‘clues’ on how to combat National Action. He was an inspiration for a major smear article in The Bulletin in March 1989, an article which criticised a number of patriotic groups and persons at a time when ASIO/Special Branch was moving against them.
Greason’s casual mention of ‘Basil Recht’ suggests to us that broader issue. Did Greason approach the Federal Police or was it the other way round back there in 1983? It is significant in the history of Nationalist and patriotic politics that persons in the situation like Greason inevitably are found and value extracted. We must also wonder who suggested Greason ‘come out’ in the National Times early in 1984 as a critic of the Nationalists, and ask how it was he passed over into the company of the screamers at the International Socialist Organisation for a grand ‘anti-racist’ speaking tour tour in May-June 1984? Did Greason think of it all himself?
Somehow, when we deal with the teenage fascist, there is a suggestion of the black operation lurking in the background.
15. The Problem Of Historical Accuracy: What To Do About David Greason?
There is no longer any real reason why the patriotic movement should be concerned with Greason’s utility as a viable originator of smear. Nonetheless, it still follows that occasional journalism written to ‘the script’ is possible and organizations and individuals could be ambushed. So, what to do? Basically, we must finish the job. Once falsehood is put into circulation, it can be built upon and re-marketed. It must be answered, but in a way that serves the cause and does not side-track it.
At the start of this pamphlet we said , there is usually very little sense, when faced with a fraud like Greason, to answer his fabrications point by point. It is better to provide the counter-picture. The enemy fights to delegitimize Australian Nationalism and patriotism. We struggle to proclaim its validity and truth. What are we seeing on the Greason question?
Essentially, there was no storyline of any worth, either in Greason’s Teenage Fascist or in his journalism, because, as the Giannopoulos pamphlet proved, and as this pamphlet demonstrates, Greason is a fraud and a purveyor of false stories. He was at one point of his life, fundamentally psychologically disturbed, and once ‘reconstructed’, set out to maintain his new persona by serving the opposite cause to the one he had supposedly served. One must sing for one’s supper. It is open to conclude also that Greason’s appreciation of the ‘Right’ groups he joined was adolescent, and if there is any value in discussing the attraction some politics may exercise over the very young, it is only at that level anything Greason could say has any ‘value’ at all. And even then, one must be careful.
Greason could one day reappear on the anti-racist circuit, when he finally returns from Britain, or even if he stays there and scribbles for the Jewish Board of Deputies/MI-5 rag – Searchlight magazine. But Greason is now a mere fading actor upon the stage of anti-racism.
Our politics, just like the politics of the liberal Establishment, must show no deference towards those who challenge it. By gutting Greason, we show there is no ‘market’ in peddling rubbish. Most importantly, we show to the professional lie-peddlers like those at Australia-Israel Review that the issue for public comment is that they used Greason. Our charge is that this magazine knew the essential truth all the way along and, at the very least, has known the full story for four years. So why no ‘retractions’, no ‘self-criticisms’? Rather, they just soldier on to the next phase of the struggle. It is a worthy attribute patriots should emulate.
One liar-propagandist down, ten thousand to go!